Week #3 – Principles are universal

“It is evident, therefore, that all we have to do is let our light shine; the more energy we can radiate, the more rapidly shall we be enabled to transmute undesirable conditions into sources of pleasure and profit.” – Charles Haanel

So for some time now I’ve been learning how to create and publish low- and no-content books.  You know, like grownup coloring books, journals, workbooks.  Going to be expanding now into activity books, like mazes and find-its and other fun stuff like that!

It’s been a blast learning about the publishing world.  And the lady I’ve been learning from is absolutely amazing.  I’m a member of her mastermind group, and she recently forwarded a theory she’d been working on.

In essence, if you were to turn on the tap to fill a glass with water, and the glass begins to overflow, turning off the tap because letting it run is wasteful is an example of scarcity thinking.  If you’re thinking properly, she says, you get a bigger glass.  As each glass fills, you pass it around so everyone can have a drink.  When there’s nobody else to take a glass, and the one you’re holding begins to overflow, you get a bucket.  When that fills, get a barrel.  And then when the barrel overflows, you get a firehose and start spreading that water around.

I know she’s never studied Haanel – I asked her.  And yet, her own self-development has led her to the same ideas.  Like in Og, “…experience is comparable to fashion; an action that proved successful today will be unworkable and impractical tomorrow. Only principles endure and these I now possess…”

Amazing what connections you can make, once eyes and ears and mind are open!

Week 2 – What is a thought?

Now be perfectly still as before, but inhibit all thought. This will give you control over all thoughts of care, worry, and fear, and will enable you to entertain only the kind of thoughts you desire.”

Okay.  No thinking.  I can do that.  How hard can it be?


Inhibit all thought.  Drat, I should have taken off my shoes.  The edges of the soles are not comfortable.  Stop.  Inhibit all thought.  Owwwwww, there’s a metal sliver digging into my kneeeeeeee.  Stop it!  No thinking.  Silence.  The sound of birds chirping.  Firefly, meowing and pawing at the door.  Go away, kitten…  “Pen-pineapple-apple-pen, i have a pen, i have an apple…”
Blast it.  Thanks a lot, Becky, now I have an earworm.


Okay, comfortable  clothes, comfortably seated, start the timer and…  No thinking.  Heartbeat.  Breathing.  Silence, peace.  Oh, how lovely…  Wait.  Was that a thought?  Crap!  Even if it wasn’t, that was!  Well, I’ll be all right if I just don’t…  “apple pen, pineapple pen, ahhhhh!  Pen-pineapple-apple-pen…”


Okay, so, it’s obvious what the exercise is intended to do, right?  I mean, our world without is created by our world within, and the world within is controlled by our thought, specifically the habits of thought within our subconscious mind.  But until we can control the thoughts that get in, our subconscious is going to be contaminated by all the stray bits we’ve allowed in while we weren’t watching.


Is hearing the sound of birds, and dry leaves rattling in the breeze a thought?  Is is thinking, to focus on breathing and feeling the rhythm of a heartbeat?  What about hearing music – not lyrics, but only music – inside your head?  Is that thinking?

Google defines thought as being “an idea or opinion produced by thinking or occurring suddenly in the mind” and has a second definition of “the action or process of thinking.”  Which is… not helpful at all, really.

What is a thought?  And how does it differ from awareness?

Week 1 – A more detailed map

A September sunrise

A September sunrise

Week one again!  It’s thrilling – I’ve missed the webinars, the wisdom, the automatic companionship with other MKMMA members.  It’s intimidating – working full time plus, in addition to a daily photographic project and related blog, will I remain faithful to the exercises?  Haven’t always been so, in the past when my schedule was easier, though I’ve muddled through, muddled through.

And it’s promising.  Because it’s a human truth that if you don’t know where you’re going, then

  1. any road will get you there, and
  2. you won’t actually know when you’ve arrived.

After two years of asking myself, over and over, what do I want?, two years of retraining myself to believe that I can have what I truly and deeply want, the answer is crystallizing.  I know myself better now, understand more of what my gift to the world actually is… and how to most effectively give it away.

The Northern Lights

The Northern Lights under the Big Dipper

And to think the realization had its roots in a chance comment of mine, that once I wouId have paid no attention to, a comment I wouldn’t have been in a position to even make, if not for the past two years of studying Haanel and Og and Emerson.

Since January the 1st, I’ve been taking pictures of the sunrise from the eastern overlook of Barn Bluff in Red Wing, MN.  Barn Bluff is a local landmark overlooking the mighty Mississippi; from the easternmost point of the bluff, you can see for ten-twelve miles – which is a feat in southeast Minnesota, let me tell you!  By the end of the year I’ll have photos of 366 consecutive sunrises, all from the same spot!

And word’s been getting around; I was recently interviewed by a writer from the Rochester Post-Bulletin about the project.  One of the questions he asked was why.  Why the project, why Barn Bluff, why every single sunrise for a year.

“I want to show people how pretty the world is,” was what I said.

It was a flippant, off-the-cuff answer meant to sound good for the interview… and yet it resonated with every layer of my being, from conscious to subconscious.  _MG_0682The voice of my deepest self seized an unguarded moment and spoke clearly.  We miss so much of beauty, particularly in our own back yards, because we never look up from our technology and stress and hectic schedules long enough to notice what’s right there – the liquid ice sculpture of a dew-covered spiderweb in the morning sunlight;  the first flowers of spring, poking up through a late snow; the constantly-shifting, fathomless patterns in the clouds on a stormy day; a baby’s laugh; the warm and steady rumble of a cat’s purr.

Beauty everywhere.

Time to get all these new realizations down in my DMP!