The most exhilarating and mystically exciting part of the day ‘work hard’ begins after breakfast. Although working hard might not sound particularly exciting, if you do it with the right intent at this time, your mind, chi and the cosmos itself, can move forward in unison. You can feel the rush of being fast-tracked to mystical and material success, and it just doesn’t get better than that. Well, in fact it does, because the qualities associated with your spleen and heart also shine now. Your spleen is responsible for mental activities, for focus, clarity of thought and fluid communication; your heart, the emperor, is the seat of intelligence and love, and the home of your soul. If you are working purposefully now, the orbs, the divine consciousness of these organs, can go about their mystical business, combine their spectacular assets, and light the ‘fire of destiny’. You’ll glide through that next mysterious destiny gateway before you know it.
If this doesn’t sound like your usual morning, you’re not alone. Not many people would describe the hours after breakfast as the fire of destiny time, but every morning could, and should, feel this way for all of us. Success is the theme, and we are all born to achieve this. The Daoist ‘success sages’ cottoned on to this thousands of years ago. They discovered that we all have a purpose on earth, a ‘contract with Heaven’, something we signed up to do here, and to be successful we have to fulfill the contract and find our cosmic self. So they developed a lifestyle of alignment with Dao that keeps you in touch with the mystical, so that you know what your destiny is, and simultaneously develops your organs so that they can provide the cognitive and other functions needed for you to follow your destiny. It’s a fantastic and comprehensive lifestyle success package, and it comes with a free 24/7 support line.
See, there’s success and then there’s success. If, like me, you were a fan of the success books, you’ll be familiar with those tales of people who work day and night and move relentlessly forward overcoming all obstacles, until they finally achieve their goals. They force themselves to succeed through sheer willpower and the willingness to make whatever sacrifices necessary. But, as I learned the hard way, you can read every success book out there (and I did – Donald Trump’s, Think Big and Kick Ass, was a favorite), follow all the advice but just end up unhappy, unsuccessful and out-of-synch with your true self and your destiny. Having said that, there’s plenty of cross-overs between success theories and the Daoist system, such as getting up early, exercising and working hardest in the morning, they are just missing the chi factor, the mystical aspect and the cosmic support component (a small oversight really!).
Success, whether mystical or material, is hard work. Robert Kiyosaki, a renowned success guru, said you need the ‘three Bs’ – backbone, brains and balls – to be successful, which is a pretty accurate summary. But he didn’t explain where to get these from if you’re not one of the lucky yang types who retain those qualities into adulthood (as most success gurus do). With the Daoist system though, you can generate and ‘borrow the power’ (as they say in the martial art of Tai-chi) that you need for this. We are all already networked into the great chi-matrix in the sky (via our acupuncture meridians) and, as chi is energy, intelligence and consciousness, we can download both power and purpose. As explained in my book, The Perfect Day Plan, where I looked at each organ individually, ‘backbone’ is willpower and it comes from strong kidneys, ‘brain’ is the mental activities and mind control, and this comes from a healthy spleen, and those ‘balls’, which for me represent spiritual determination, come from knowing your cosmic self so that fear doesn’t stop you from pursuing your destiny. We can all develop this set of assets by working with chi and aligning.
The Daoist system is geared towards mystical success. This is considered the precursor of material success because once you have the mystical part sorted, fortune follows you. Alignment and chi-work gets things rolling, but I like to add in mystical affirmations using visualisations around a particular meridian (the UB) and acupuncture point (GB30). The UB (Urinary Bladder) meridian runs all the way from your eyebrows down your back, to your toes. It empowers and embodies backbone, brain and spiritual balls. GB30 (Gall Bladder 30, Huantiao) is a seriously trippy acupuncture point. One of the twelve celestial star points, it is a vortex point, an opening to other realities. Metaphysically, it is associated with taking the leap from the mundane to the mystical. So, if you got your day off to a mystical start by doing your breathing and chi practice, thus getting in touch with your cosmic self, then embedded this knowledge in your body during your nourishing breakfast, you are now primed for mystical affirmations. So, after you finish eating, sit still for five minutes. Visualise power rolling up that UB channel, up your spine from the base, over the top of your head and down the centre of your forehead to the point of your third eye. Now project your mystical vision for the day ahead with a spleen-heart affirmation: “I am my mystical vision, my perceiving agent is my spirit”. This is that ‘right intent’ I mentioned earlier. It means you are going to go about your business in the mundane world but you are going to keep one foot in the mystical.
Mystical affirmations have the power to get right into the back-end of the system and change the programming. And, we really need this after breakfast because it’s time for the mental activities, the domain of your spleen, and that means it’s time to wrangle with the flighty beast that is your mind. Destiny is hanging by a thread, yet again, because your mind will either support or sabotage your journey. So your mystical success strategy is to get to work, keep moving forward, keep focusing on GB30 (located behind your right hip), the UB channel and your third eye. Your organs will be happy, as they have plenty of chi, and their positive attributes will come forward. Your spleen delivers fierce focus, your thoughts will be directed by your intent to be true your cosmic self, and your will to stay on path, and you’ll automatically be thinking, planning and doing things that are in harmony with your destiny.
This all sounds wonderful, but in reality the morning usually goes more like this: you sleep in and race out the door clutching some of that anti-destiny toast, or get up and straight into either work or distraction (social media), rather than making contact with the mystical. You will be disconnected from your cosmic self, the Dao and your destiny. You are more likely to seek distractions at work with gossip, snacks, coffees, cigarettes and putting things off. But by now your organs will be freaking out, the mystical baton handovers have been interrupted, the orbs are bumping into each other and getting testy, there’s a log-jam of mystical processes. Your spleen, the drama queen of the organs, starts wringing its hands, and instead of fiercely focusing it is jealous, yearning, resenting, procrastinating and worrying. Especially worrying – you’ll worry about the bills, the cat, the kids, the future, the past, the mortgage and all the things that can go wrong. Instead of clarity, focus and direction you are confused about who you are, and what you are doing here. Basically, you’ll fall into being what the Daoists call your ‘acquired self’. This is the opposite of your cosmic self because your thoughts will be ruled by reactive emotions rather than your mystical intent. These precious cosmic purpose hours will be spent engaging with, or countering one reactive pattern with another. Paranoid scenarios loop in your head about who said or did what to you, or what you will say or do to them. Worse still, because your acquired self does what it is supposed to do rather than what you were born to do, you won’t want to follow up on your dreams because it’s just too risky. Your destiny becomes associated with worry.* Your mind has now become ‘the enemy of Dao’.
This is not the plan. In Chinese medicine the mental activities; intent, will and thought, (the cognitive functions) are considered a divine gift. It is only when you ignore your body and forget your place in the universe, that they turn against you – and how! Undirected negative, defeatist and judgmental thoughts can fill your consciousness during the day and buzz around in your head all night, so you can’t sleep. I regularly treat clients who ‘hate their thoughts’, but can’t escape them. This is particularly intense for those who have done drugs like speed or ice, as these have a major impact on the functioning of your spleen and really accelerate the breakdown of cognitive functions. I remember once (after a three day speed-bender) being at work and having to do some photocopying but also feeling so scattered I wanted a cup of coffee, but with no harmony between intention, will and thought, I put the coffee and sugar on the photocopier instead of in a cup. Luckily I caught myself before I added the water. I laugh about it now, but at the time I was shattered and panicked that someone would see what I’d done. I thought I was losing it, and was terrified that I was mad. If my mind was a gift, it was definitely one I wanted to return.
But within destruction lies the seed of creation. In the drug context, although speed or ice can wreak havoc on your spleen and mental activities these drugs first show you the optimum functioning of these; you get a pure experience of ‘directed thought’. There is no gap between plan and action. On ice, you’re instantly and effortlessly doing the cleaning or paperwork or whatever comes to mind. You don’t plan then act, your intention, will and thoughts are perfectly (but artificially) harmonized so it all happens at once. You are ‘being’ not ‘doing’. This is an experience of ‘non-action’, one of the highest states sought after in Daoism. And it is such an extraordinarily satisfying way to function, that people repeat drugs just to recapture it. But the outcome is physical, emotional and spiritual destruction. Following the chi-cycle, however, naturally leads you to these states.
It might sound paradoxical, but ‘non-action’ is the state we are ultimately aiming to be in for the ‘work hard’ phase of the morning. If we can get to that place of mystical mind-control we really have mystical success. But, like any success, it won’t come overnight, so meanwhile use these four hours to dust off your contract, remember what you are here for and take a bold and fearless step towards your destiny. You need to be fearless because the thing about your contract is, you will get clues to it but you have to start doing it to make these clear. The old adage ‘keep walking and the bridge appears’, applies now, but you can make this a bit easier by getting yourself some basic directions to the bridge first. Yogananda, who also wrote a success book (The Law of Success – another one of my favorites), talked about understanding what you want to do, and what you need to do to achieve it. This is ‘need to do’ time.
So, grab a piece of paper and draw up a table of two vertical columns, write in the left-hand side what it is that you’ve always wanted to do – whether it’s starting a charity, writing a book, making a documentary, becoming a pilot or chef. Then, in the right-hand column, list the steps to practically achieve this; things like taking classes, studying scripts, applying for jobs or building your website. Purposefully do these tasks now. This is you walking forward expecting the bridge to appear, and it will. Because each step you take opens a door or makes a new connection for you. Don’t get sucked-in to the idea that your life will be easy once you get your contract back in front of you, the path to purpose is never smooth, it’s not supposed to be. The idea is to just get stuck into it regardless. A key tenet of Daoism is that getting involved with life on earth is how the Dao realizes itself. We are here to have a go, but to have a go with one foot in the mystical so that we stay on track to destiny and remain healthy and happy.
If you have a day job, but don’t feel it is connected to your destiny, still work hard for these four hours. This moves stagnant chi, creates movement and change becomes easier. Plus you won’t fall into the trap of slacking off in the morning and then trying to catch up on all your work in the afternoon which sets energetic events in train that move you further off path. Even in a job you don’t like or find meaningless, work purposefully and try to remain faithful to your cosmic self in whatever situation you find yourself in. Every time you do this it makes your spirit feel more at home. And the more at home it feels, the more it can pervade all aspects of your life. If you know what you want to do, but feel you can’t make those first moves, it will be due to depletion as well as non-alignment. Following the chi cycle lifestyle (plus nutritional supplements will change this). If you don’t have a job, resist spending the four hours after breakfast watching TV, or lying around listening to music, reading magazines or doing things for entertainment, because you’ll lose focus, motivation, connection with Dao and drift towards your acquired self and misery. Instead, make seeking your cosmic self your job (this is, in fact, everyone’s real job) and seek out books, websites or videos about inspiring people, challenging journeys, amazing super-foods, multi-dimensional universes, martial arts or cutting-edge holistic therapies. The idea is to do purposeful heartfelt things.
Speaking of which, as we are moving to heart time, the seat of knowledge, love and your soul, this is the best time to work on your relationship too. How do you do this? By seeking your cosmic self. We fall in love with each other’s cosmic selves. But over time we all get caught up in the mundane, fall out of alignment, become ‘acquired’ and acquired always wants to get into right and wrong, it is judgmental and reactive. Put two people like that together and relationship issues will naturally arise. Follow the chi-cycle instead and find your cosmic self, because it doesn’t give a toss about right or wrong, it is accepting of everything and everyone, it has the big picture perspective, it knows the cosmic truth. It sees the cosmic self of others. So in January, the month for the new, resolve to find your cosmic self. Wake up tomorrow, get in touch with the mystical, make your breakfast a cosmic dance of chi, work purposefully and look for the buzz of being drawn towards your destiny. Continue the journey into February, the month of love. Team up with your partner and follow the chi-cycle together, be limitless together. The Dao is willing you towards this.
*As an aside, and because I’m treating so many people for anxiety attacks now, worry and anxiety are different. Worry is a backfiring of ‘thought planning’ but anxiety is a baseless dread. Anxiety has nothing to do with the mental processes, so you can’t resolve it with your mind. Metaphysically, anxiety attacks are ‘fire’ out of control. Your internal mystical processes have been so disrupted that the orbs can’t do their job, and the fire that is supposed to be fuelling your destiny is raging out of control in the wrong direction. You resolve anxiety and panic through your body.