You’re next, Mr Paradiso!
Today I took another glass jar to town with me, it fit just snugly in my bag. I put in the glass container on my way to work. Â When I came home from work, I took the spent fluorescent tubes to the supermarket. Â (Yesterday it was the fluorescent bulbs, known here as saving bulbs since they use much less energy and last longer. Â Well, supposedly they last longer. I don’t see much difference myself – I have changed most of them during these three years I’ve lived here, which is perhaps twice the life of ordinary incandescent bulbs.)
My point today – as if I had not made it before – is that I try to do this each workday. Â Perhaps not both of them, but at least get something out of the house every day (not counting the ordinary trash). Â Hopefully it will become second nature eventually. Â My first nature is to drag things to the cave. Â Thinking back to the home where I grew up, there is no doubt that I am descended from packrats. Â Actually, now that I live in a house that is vaguely similar to the type of house I grew up in (albeit newer), the similarity is striking. Â A living room that is halfway presentable, and several other rooms absolutely stacked with all kinds of objects, but mostly those related to learning somehow. Â Yes, I have grown up to become my parents, only fewer in number.
More immediately, however, the inspiration for the (work-)daily activity probably comes from the book Integral Life Practice. Â It is quite insistent that one practice each of the four core modules every day – even if only for one minute! It actually has various 5-minute and 1-minute exercises scattered throughout. Â If you are busy – or, more likely, if you make yourself busy because you really don’t like one of the modules (such as body, in my case) – you can still not with any shred of dignity or integrity claim that you don’t have 1 minute free over the course of 24 hours.
Michael Mackenzie at Project Meditation says much the same thing. Â If you can’t meditate more than 5 minutes, then meditate 5 minutes. Â It is far better to do so every day than to start skipping days. Â And Bill Harris at Centerpointe Research Institute compares using their product (Holosync) to brushing one’s teeth. Â (Although I certainly would not brush my teeth continually for half an hour, much less the whole hour recommended for Holosync. Â I can see what he means though.)
So that is what I do now to deal with something that is contrary to my nature. Â One jar at a time, or a few light bulbs, or an old CD. Â It may be only five minutes, pitiful or ridiculous depending on your view. Â But if I don’t forget it and don’t fall out of the practice, Â sooner or later I should become a changed person. Â And even if not, there will be hundreds fewer objects in the house than it would otherwise have been, if I live here another year.