Finders Keepers

Jim:    Excuse me.  Have you lost something?  I see you around here often.  However, you have me at a disadvantage.  Although I place your face, I don’t know your name.  And, perhaps I can help you find what you’ve lost.  Or perhaps you never had it to begin with.  I’m looking for seekers.  Seekers to become attenders.  And, finally, to become convinced members of the world of Fishing Without Bait.  Convinced that a life without placing definitive expectations on yourself, a life where we aim rather than laser focus, and fail to see the moonwalking bears.  Convinced that walking through life with your eyes wide open is preferable to eyes wide shut.  Convinced you’ve sat on the bench of life long enough and make a decision?  Have an intention to get in the game?  The game of your life?  A game where you make the rules, no one else.  Where we answer to ourselves, and perhaps a higher power – the Divine.  Are you arrogant enough to think that you are the end-all and be-all?  What I’m talking about is Fishing Without Bait.  I’m talking about full-impact mindfulness.  And, if these two concepts have the slightest bit of interest – if they arouse the slightest bit of curiosity in you, listen on as you move from seeker to attender to convinced.  Join me now on a grand road of adventure.  Raise the anchor and unfurl the sails.  There is a strong wind blowing.  And, as Buzz Lightyear would say to infinity and beyond.  Today, as always, I’m joined by my good friend, co-host, and producer of this program, Mr. Mike.  Mr. Mike, you’ve worked hard for a lot of things in your life, have you not?

Mike:    Absolutely.

Jim:    And, how do you intend to keep them?

Mike:    By continuing to work hard to keep them.

Jim:    Mm-hmm.  So, Mike, many people accumulate valuable items throughout their life.  And, of course, one must learn how to determine what is valuable.  People go to great measures to keep what they have, and perhaps spend more time guarding what they have rather than enjoying it – keeping items in a safe, or behind barbed wire, or locked away with locks with a special code.  Well, for those convinced members of our podcast – for those who have begun the metamorphosis from a caterpillar to a butterfly – congratulations.  So, let’s talk today about keeping what we have.  So, Mike, did you ever hear of the saying finders keepers, losers weepers?

Mike:    Oh certainly.  And, it was a wonderful gameshow on Nickelodeon back in the day I enjoyed.

Jim:    What does that phrase mean to you, Mike?

Mike:    It means if I happened upon it, it is mine.  I possess that.

Jim:    Sounds a little selfish at first, doesn’t it?

Mike:    A little bit, yeah.  It’s a little bit of a keepaway, or making your mark on that thing.

Jim:    And, it sounds like you have no concern about others.  However, we’re going to talk today a bit about how to keep some of those benefits – some of those superpowers that perhaps you’ve gained or created from participation in our world, the world of full-impact mindfulness.  So, the first thing I want to talk about, Mike, is repetition, repetition, repetition and repetition.  Referring back to some previous podcasts, how did you learn your spelling words, Mike?

Mike:    Repetition.

Jim:    How did you learn your times tables?

Mike:    Repetition again.

Jim:    So, of course, through repetition.  Now, unfortunately as we’ve discussed before, when we allow ourselves to become tools of technology we become surface thinkers.  Shallow surface thinkers that begin to learn our capacity for creativity and the ability to learn.  However, off the soap box and on with the show.  Repetition makes behaviors, thoughts and feelings become automatic.  And, of course, using new knowledge and tools are awkward and frustrating.  And, sometimes we’re people who believe that well, if at first I don’t succeed, quit.  And, as from the 12-step recovery world, I want to point to uncommon sense becomes common sense.  When we begin to internalize those automatic thoughts on an unconscious level in our mind, we combine instinct and intuition.  We’ve talked many times about adding that combination of synchronicity and serendipity.  Keep in mind that new benefits cause irritation.  Tension and anger.  Things that are unfamiliar.  I think everyone out there knows that we talk straight talk on this program.  Now, everyone open your ears.  Turn off the radio.  Turn off the television.  And, put down your phone.  Hear the words I say loud and clear.  Expect some discomfort.  I think you’ve heard me.  Expect some discomfort.  Well, how much?  That takes us back to choices again.  Remember, pain is a reality.  Suffering is optional.  So, you may want to refer back to some previous podcasts.  So, the first is repetition.  And, when I speak of that, I talk about labeling and describing.  And, I don’t mean occasionally.  I mean multiple times a day.  When I talk about paying attention on purpose, I actually mean stopping, backing away from a situation and opening your eyes.  And, when I talk about having your eyes wide open versus your eyes wide shut I’m talking about seeing with more than your eyes.  I’m talking about seeing with what’s more than tangible.  The second subject I’d like to discuss with you is awareness of ego.  I have a friend of mine who often quotes I’m not much, but I’m all I think about.  Ego is essential for self-esteem and self-concept.  However, when we begin to have unrealistic expectations of our ego we set ourselves up for failure.  We set ourselves up for guilt and shame.  It’s essential to ask yourself questions.  Remember what the Dalai Lama said question everything.  One must learn the rules so we can properly break them.  Learn the cost versus benefits of decision.  Ask yourself where is your voice coming from?  Where is it coming from?  Is it coming from pure ego?  Mike, there are two types of people in this world: Givers and Takers.  Are you familiar with that?

Mike:    Certainly.  I think classically, you think about the givers being people in the community – people in hospitals, the nurses, the charity, the food banks – being the givers.  And, then the takers, I guess we have a little bit more negative of a connotation – the people that only will take things for themselves maybe more selfishly.

Jim:    Sure.  And, when we talk about that, we talk about people who perhaps do some altruistic things like go to a hospital or give away large sums of money.  However, when do they usually do it?  Do they do it in private?  Do they do it alone?  Or do they invite the media?  And, tell the world how important and how great they really are?

Mike:    Right.

Jim:    So, keep in mind, what are we talking about there?  We’re talking about ego.  So, we’re going to talk a bit now – and later in following podcasts – again, about the paradox and oxymoron that says in order to keep it you must give it away.  And, of course, again this comes from the world of 12-step recovery where it says having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps we try to carry this message to alcoholics, however you can put whatever you want in that statement, and to practice these principles in all our affairs.  However, to carry a message, Mike, you have to have one.  Would that be correct?

Mike:    Correct.

Jim:    You have to have the message.  Keep in mind the statement by Lama Thubten Yeshe who said, according to Buddhist psychology, unless you dedicate yourselves to others you will never be happy.  Also, the Bible’s Jesus says whoever tries to keep his life will lose it.  But, whoever loses his life will preserve it.  And, that comes from the Christian Bible, the Book of Luke, Chapter 13, Verse 33.  So, we’ve just reviewed a few basic maintenance tools for keeping what you have.  The message for today is practice, practice, practice, and give it away.  I’ll ask everyone out there – if others observed your life, as if your life were a move, would others want what you have?  Has anyone ever come up to you and asked how do you live like you do?  Could you show me? Come along.  From seekers to attenders to the convinced, I make this call to you to join us.  To Fish Without Bait.  To live your life with full-impact mindfulness.  Join us on our next podcast for continuation and to further adventures of Fishing Without Bait.  Until then, a kindness for yourself and a kindness to another.  Namaste. 

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