We hear so often the term, “centering”. I think that most people now know that they need to be “centered”, but so few know what this means. Perhaps the best way to explain for deeper understanding is to describe to you the times that you are not centered.
When you are thinking about what to do next, you are not centered. When you are replaying past events, you are not centered.
It is in the center that we just are. As Baba Ram Das said, just “be here now”. John Barnes teaches, when you are off this center, the center of the “now”, that you are having an out of body experience. How many of us live in the “now”? Let me describe what it is like to be in the “now.”
Imagine you are a master craftsman. Perhaps a coppersmith, or a shoemaker, or a leather-worker, or a stone carver, a dentist, a surgeon, an artist. But for this exercise, I’m going to say coppersmith.
Over breakfast, you cleanse from your mind the day before and all thoughts of managing the business. Then your ritual begins: you put the dishes and cups in the sink, almost as a way of physically putting the mundane in its place. You turn precisely and walk toward the basement door. Each step narrows your focus to the now. You stop in front of the door and reach for your apron. Reaching out for it is like a priest reaching for his vestments.
To you, the apron is holy, for you need it to approach your holiest of holies: the crucible. Each step toward your holy dungeon further quiets your thoughts. Your focus turns inward to holy of holies that we all have within: that part of our mind that speaks in pictures. You see your task for the day. It is a simple hammered copper vase. You have made hundreds like it, but each is different in ways only you know or could detect. You remember each one, for each one was part of your journey to mastery. Each piece of copper speaks to you, especially those pieces you have forged.
You run through your skills, and paint a pathway to bring to substance that which you just envisioned. There starts a voice within, one spoken with thoughts which we then speak to ourselves, a voice that gives us the next step. We then can work for hours, oblivious to the time, oblivious to the world, as we do first this, then that–hearing the instructions one by one.
We all have experienced this place. A place of total concentration. A place where only the minutiae exist. A place of doing only one thing at a time, and being focused on just that one task. A place where yesterday and tomorrow, and even the next minute do not exist. It is almost a dreamlike state, and if someone were to intrude abruptly, something within shatters in the same way a dream bursts and disappears like soap bubble.
This is the place, the ONLY place that a master craftsman works. But that craftsman can be the master of any craft–my above list is just a few. My craft is healing. I don’t heal, but my touch tells the client how to heal herself. When I find the center, all that exists is the point of contact. I reach into my client to find the restrictions. She, centered, is able to let me in. I am in the now, and all that I feel, am aware of, is the fascia I feel, and what it feels like. Then, from that sacred place within, I see the pictures of my task. I then hear in thoughts, not spoken words, the instructions to myself of what to do. It is a steady stream. This place has been called, “intuition”, the right brain, our higher self. This place is the center.
We all have it. It talks to us in different ways depending on what level of energy we have been functioning in. When we are in victim mode, level one, we call this inner voice our conscience. When we are in higher levels, it is our intuition, and at level seven, it is our genius mind, or what Brian Tracy calls our “Super Conscious Mind”.
You might say, “I’ve never experienced that, I have no profession or craft”. But I beg to differ with you. You also enter that place whenever you are totally engaged in your task. You get there while cooking, gardening, building a birdhouse, working on a scrapbook, or knitting. It is the place of the craftsman, the place of mastery–and anything we do with our hands can take us there. It is the place of centering.