Archive for December, 2008.

Hope, Recovery, and Your NPR Driveway Moment of the Week

Written by Philip Walter on Dec 29 at 11:23 am.

Inspiration for New Years from BrickhouseBodymind.com

photo credit: KansasPhoto (Patrick)

I hope everyone is having a wonderful holiday season! My wife and I are winding down celebrating Christmas with our families and looking forward to ringing in the New Year together. It’s a great time for getting inspired, of course – the week of the New Year’s beginning – so I thought I would share with you all an inspiring story I heard recently on NPR. Consider it your NPR Driveway Moment of the week. I know I haven’t kept up with posting them much, but I think you’ll enjoy this one.

Jason Crigler – Hope and Recovery

It is a story about a musician – a New York City guitarist named Jason Crigler – who suffered a brain hemorrhage during a concert in Manhattan in 2004. His wife, pregnant at the time with their first child, and the rest of their family were devastated by the grim prognosis given by Jason’s doctors. Even so, they refused to give up on him, and what ensued was an 18-month odyssey, the vast majority of which, Jason has no memory.

During that time, he spent more than a year in the hospital, but finally, thanks to the dogged hopes of his loved ones, he recovered from his injury. The whole saga is documented in an inspiring film called Life. Support. Music. Hearing this story on the way home from work affected me deeply and reminded me of several things we would all do well to keep in mind during the coming year.

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My Other Pet Blog – ADistillationOfSelf.com

Written by Philip Walter on Dec 22 at 10:40 pm.

Project Distillation

A Distillation of … what?

Photo credit: Pål Berge

So, the holidays are coming up, and as most of you probably know, I’ve been hard at work finalizing the recipes, workout plans, stress management techniques, and thought experiments that will make up my book, The Brickhouse Bodymind Blueprint.  That has unfortunately meant fewer posts here at the blog.  Things will return to normal as soon as the book is ready, which with any luck will be the end of January.

Anyway, until then I have started up a new little project.  In addition to being a fun challenge in the web design department, it should give me an outlet for less structured features than those found here, and keep me from becoming a total recluse while I finalize the book.

It will also serve as my workout log.  Those of you who are interested in seeing what my regular physical training regimine actually looks like can do that at this website.  Currently I am trying to shed a final few percentge-points of bodyfat before we take pictures of the exercises that will be featured in my book.  You can read a detailed description of the workout cycle here.

The new website is called A Distillation of Self.  I wrote an introductory post that explains the whole vision in a nutshell.  Also, you can find the best yet description of my personal transformative practice there.  Please don’t hesitate to let me know what ya’ll think of the new site by commenting here or there, or sending me an e-mail at philip(at)brickhousebodymind.com.

Peace and thanks for reading!

One Year of Brickhouse Bodymind!

Written by Philip Walter on Dec 4 at 10:21 pm.

one full year of brickhousebodymind.com has come to a close

photo courtesy of my wife, amy

One year ago yesterday I published the first ever post on BrickhouseBodymind.com. I can’t say the time has flown by, nor has it dragged particularly. Seems like it’s been a year. My goal was to publish one post a week, and I am pleasantly surprised to find I actually managed to hit that goal. This is post number 53, so that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

You are now part of a community of over 1,000 unique visitors who read this site every month, and that number continues to rise, so thanks to all of you for spending time reading my ramblings and watching my videos. Without you all, it would hardly be worth it.

It has certainly been an interesting journey. One that I’ve enjoyed very much indeed. This blog was supposed to do two things: 1) contribute to the growing conversation about the integral model and integral fitness, and 2) keep me motivated and on track toward finishing my book project. The first purpose seems to be fulfilling itself as more and more people stumble upon the site, and with a realistic publication date for my book sometime in January, it looks like the second purpose too is working itself out.

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Do This Now – The Anatomy of Happiness – Part III

Written by Philip Walter on Dec 2 at 7:55 pm.

a new home (to be seen)

photo courtesy of justneal

No long wait this time! It’s Part 3 of my ongoing series of conversations with my longtime friend and yoga teacher, Matt Krepps, about the nature of happiness. I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! Hard to believe it’s December already, huh? I’m deep in the throes of editing my manuscript, still hoping for a January publication date for The Brickhouse Bodymind Blueprint. Even with all that, we managed to get Part 3 together. We’re really driving toward the culmination now. This part addresses the Mechanisms of Personal Perception and Identification.

How exactly do we become aware of external events? How do we make decisions? Is what we perceive to be the present really in the present moment? Given everything that is physically required to do something as simple as move your finger, do you really purport to have control over your actions? Furthermore, do you really want your happiness to depend on your ability to make all those things happen in just the right way and at just the right time?

Here’s a point-by-point synopsis:

  • Intro and recap of Part 2
  • The experiments of Benjamin Libet
  • Happiness as a product of personal volition
  • A stuck perspective = A living death
  • Job’s Body and the Sense of Effort
  • Biotensegrity
  • Were you there when you were seven? Are you here now?

Here’s a link to the pdf – A Course in Consciousness – that we mention several times in this conversation. Here’s the audio file download link, and of course you can use the player below. It runs about 59 minutes.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

This conversation really took some twists and turns, but like Matt said, the purpose of this is to be like a torpedo to the ego. So much of human happiness and consequently the lack of said happiness is tied to personal identification. The ego’s job is to own things and identify with things. That’s how we relate to the world around us. But since all things eventually pass away, the ego sets us up for disappointment. Only when we begin to shift our identification toward that which does not pass away can we hope to find true happiness. Only then do we become fearless, unshakeable, and unbreakable. Only then do we flow as we were always meant to flow.

As Matt points out here in Part 3, this is ultimately a religious discussion, since God – The Great I Am – is “that which does not pass away.” In the final installment, we want to bring together what we have learned in Parts 1-3, and have this religious discussion; but we need your help. Please comment below or e-mail me at philip(at)brickhousebodymind(dot)com if you have any questions, thoughts, etc.

Is there anything else in particular you would like us to address? Are you having trouble digesting the conversations? Do you think we’re crazy – are we wasting our time?

Please let me know.

What is the nature of your religious faith? How do the things we’ve discussed here jive with that faith? How does your faith play into your happiness? How does it help you through difficult times? Does your happiness depend on your ability to make certain things happen in this life?

Until next time, Sit down, Shut up, and Ask yourself what’s True.

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