Another old post from Otherworldly Encounters (20th July, 2012). I’m getting ready to have a month break, so i thought I’d put up some old material to tie you all over !
“Lets face it, we all poop. Just like bunnies and pussies and cows and horses and just about every other animal – we poop ! If we’re lucky at least once a day ! We know it when we can’t poop and we know it when we poop too
much. Regular pooping is a blessing ! And if you’ve ever had chilli bum, bad abdominal cramps, constipation or severe diarrhea, you know what your poop chute feels like. But how about the rest of the trouble-free poop time ?
I suspect that most people find pooping a choir ! Some people might even enjoy it ! But the reality is, however we feel about this animal necessity, we will all spend a long part of our life pooping ! If you’re average poop time per day is 10 minutes, over a life span of 80 years that equates to 4,866.67 hours 202.78 days or 28.97 weeks (more than half a year). For many people, 10 minutes a day is equivalent to half of meditation standard time (20 minutes for most westerners).
I wonder what most people ‘do’ while they are pooping ? Well past experience in using other people’s toilets, public toilets and time spent in boarding school tells me that lots of people read magazines and books while pooping (and I guess lots of people now play with their e-toys while pooping), lots of people pick their nose, some weird souls masturbate while in ”the poop zone’, while some sing. My guess is that most people day-dream and spend a lot of their ”poop time” thinking about the past or the future. In the past myself have been guilty of day dreaming and reading my favourite novels and non fiction. But I wonder – how many people just poop ?
Pooping may well be the most spiritually enlightening activity that we can do !!!
Remember in an earlier post I suggested that many enlightened masters talking about engaging fully with what we are doing – when you pass through a door, go through completely. Well I think it is the same with pooping and all activities that fill our day. Pooping allows us the perfect opportunity to experience being, while doing. In time, if we are able to master poop meditation, we will find ourselves more at rest, more settled and at peace and energized by the experience of pooping. The poop station might well be a small window in our day when we can drop everything (excuse pun – actually quite funny I reckon – and be with what is. Pooping gives us a unique opportunity to still the mind and experience the full embodiment of presence – or in other words, pooping allows us the opportunity to ‘feel’ fully present in our bodies.
So here are my tips on how to practice enlightened pooping :
- Initially it maybe helpful to break your pooping experience into steps :
- You enter the poop zone
- You undo your belt and or button
- Unzip your pants and pull down
- Pull down undies (unless free snaker like me)
- Sit and wait
- Maybe wait some more
- Maybe poop some more
- Maybe wee
- Take toilet paper and do whatever you do with it
- Wipe poop chute and anything extra
- Stand up
- Pull up undies or not
- Pull up pants
- Tuck in clothes (ladies don’t forget that dress – I have many memories of dresses hanging out of undies !
- Do up zip
- Do up button and or belt
- Walk to hand basin
- Pick up soap
- Turn on tap
- Rub soap on hands
- Wash Hands
- Turn off tap
- Dry hands
- Leave the poop zone.
- With each step, feel the experience. Feel it in the body.
- Notice what you are feeling both somatically (in the body) and emotionally
- Feel the body talking as you poop
- Listen to the body as you poop
- Notice each unique sensation – including the breath and the heart beat
- Feel the life force as you poop
- Do not label any experience with words
- Watch the mind – if it strays with thoughts or day dreams, gently bring it back to pooping
- Fully engage with each small act
- Be patient and go easy on yourself
- If pain arises sit with the pain – allow it to be, allow it to speak to you – enter the pain fully.
- Enjoy pooping. Pooping means that you are alive.
I don’t want to sound like a weird kind of bestial pervert or anything like that but next time you see an animal pooping (I’m thinking here of my cat) just watch for a moment. Most animals (but not all) poop with deep concentration (though I have seen cows poop, eat, talk and burp at the same time ). See if you can learn from how animals engage with the mundane act of pooping.
Pooping presents us with a daily (or multi-daily) opportunity to be fully present to the moment and to experience being fully in the body. Why waste the opportunity.
Buddha talked about 4 positions for meditation – lying down, sitting, standing up and walking. Pooping gives us a chance to practice meditation and mindfulness in 3 of those positions. Why not give it a go ? No need to force yourself to sit down and meditate for 20 minutes or 3 hours or a full week long retreat, when you have 10 minutes a day to get in practice for the rest of your life. After all, real meditation and mindfulness begins, when we get off the cushion and continue the act of living.”