Today, as you observe silence, focus your attention on your sense of taste. As you eat focus your attention on flavors and textures. Of course, between your meals, remain silent. When the day is complete, answer these questions:
- What was it like to focus my attention on my sense of taste?
- Am I a person who reacts strongly to the taste of things?
- How do I react to tastes that I don’t particularly enjoy?
- In what way did my sense of taste impact my thoughts, emotions, or spirit?
- How does what I taste affect my physical energy?
Take time to ask yourself the following:
- Of the information I have learned up to now, what stands out as vital?
- What information seems least relevant to my spiritual development?
- Which of the practices seemed to move me spiritually, and which had little impact?
- Of the information I have learned so far, what would be best to review? (take time to do so now)
Focusing my attention on taste actually had an interesting side effect. The concentration on this sense made me very conscious of my body. More conscious, in fact, than any other of our sensory studies so far. I guess I do a fair share of mindless eating and drinking throughout the day. I do tend to take my breakfast and lunch while doing work, and I’m constantly sipping tea while doing a myriad of activities. Even when it comes to dinner, I often spend more time engaged in conversation or–these days anyway–what’s on the television. By focusing on the taste and sensations, I kind of felt like eating became an act of meditation.
Do I react strongly to tastes? Well, I guess I don’t. There’s very few things these days that make my eyes roll in pleasure or that make me cringe in agony. There’s also very little in the ways of foods that I dislike. I’m not crazy about a lot of different things, but I’ll still eat them and get some enjoyment out of the experience. Focusing on what I tasted though made me feel more centered, and I think that I was more responsive and more alert to things for the rest of the day. I don’t think that the tastes changed my energy per se…but I have noticed that eating a large meal or one heavy in carbohydrates does make me feel more sluggish than I think I should be.
I think that definitely the most vital information I’ve learned up to this point was circle casting. Obviously, I’ve cast circle before, but it was really something powerful to do just one step a day and really solidify my practice. I could really concentrate on just one part of the energy movement at a time and repeat it until I thought it was right. I thought that was sheer brilliance, and I’m a little ashamed that breaking down the steps and performing them over time never occurred to me before.
Least relevant? Well, the rapid fire spellwork I thought was a bit much. A spell a day is a bit much, as is all the different protection spells in rapid succession. I’ve always thought that you do one spell and then get out of its way before you decide to throw more gasoline onto the fire. That being said, I really did enjoy the day we created our own spells and had to use components of everything we’d learned up to that point–magical herbs, stones, days of the week, moon phase, magical hours…that went a really long way to helping me lock down some of those meanings. I guess I really should practice spellwork so often. Maybe then I won’t have to refer to my notes and research every time I want to Craft!
I think that the raising energy exercises moved me both the most and the least. Dancing to raise energy was exhilarating, but I had a lot of trouble with the breath control exercise. I probably would get more out of that with additional practice, but it fell pretty flat for me the first time around.
It would probably be best for me to review some of the correspondences again and really commit those to memory. It’s been something I’ve wanted to do for quite some time, and I really should do it.