To know me personally is to know that I am an information junkie. Curious about practically everything under the sun, I spend a lot of my time reading, researching, talking to strangers, and doing anything I can to better understand the world around me and the people in it. Particularly interesting to me are things that have to do with the human condition and spirit. Because of this intense desire to understand, I've studied all the major religions, have embraced the New Age philosophy, and am dipping my toes into quantum physics and the different ancient civilizations and their spiritual traditions.
My newest venture down the rabbit hole of spiritual philosophies has taken me to the land of Hawaii (thank you Sharon-Ann Riley for planting that seed) and to what I thought was an ancient spiritual tradition but has, after additional research, turned out to be a philosophy developed by a man by the name of Max Freedom Long inspired by the spiritual practices of ancient Hawaiian kahunas. This philosophy is named Huna.
Huna is built on seven principles and while all of them are worth exploring, (to do so click here) there is one in particular that I'd like to share with you. The third principle of Huna is called Makia and it speaks to something I confirm on a daily basis and the general idea behind this post. Makia states:
Energy flows where attention goes
In essence, Makia tells us that whatever we spend most of our conscious and unconscious time thinking of, will grow in our individual reality.
Before you allow yourself to get skeptical or claim that this is too 'woo woo' (special shout out to all my pragmatist friends reading this), I invite you take a moment to do an exercise with me. Let's take as an example something that you would like to accomplish...
When you have that goal in mind, take a minute to analyze what your energy around that goal is like at the present moment and how it likely affects the possible outcome. Chances are your energy could be described with one of the three F's:
Focused- You've thought about it and you have a plan. You feel good about it and are fully engaged in the process of achieved said goal. You feel pumped and have moved from thinking to doing because your thoughts and actions are aligned and the transition is seamless. You see progress and this pushes you to keep going.
Fuzzy - You know what you want but your thoughts on how to get there are scattered. This also happens when you have a general idea of what you want but don't take the time to really develop a concrete vision. In either scenario, you can't seem to get any clarity on how to move forward and because of it you feel everywhere and nowhere at the same time. Your thoughts aren't committed and neither are your actions. You see mixed results and because of it your motivation falters and further feeds the cycle of uncertainty.
Failing - You are so busy focused on what you don't want that you actually haven't given any thought, energy, or action to what you do. The energy that your expending is in essence, failing you and counter-productive. Needless to say your results are sub-optimal and you're likely not very satisfied because of it. The more your energy is focused on what you don't want, the less space and energy you have to focus on what you do and start building from there.
So what would happen if we apply this principle to our lives in general? What sort of implications would it have?
Well, for starters the good news. We are more powerful than we give ourselves credit for. All we need to do is focus, align, and do! This is good.
Because our attention drives our thoughts and our thoughts, as insignificant, meaningless, or fleeting as they may be are still consequential. Part of the limited amount of energy that we have available for creating our lives and future is spent on them. There is a definite trade off.
If we spend all day stuck to our phones busy looking at what other people are doing with their lives (or at least what they want us to think) and ignore our own real life journeys in the meantime, we're going to create more of exactly that. Less living and more browsing.
If we allow our society to shape and influence our thought patterns because we choose to passively participate and just go with the flow, if we spend countless hours of our lives watching guilty pleasure shows, if we keep indulging in selfiemania and counting likes on Instagram, we will end up being a product of it all whether we want to or not. I know I don't need to convince anyone on why that's a scary thought.
So yes, participate, by all means go to brunch. If you do though, do yourself a favor and leave your phone at home and take your brain with you.
If you can't find a brunch that refuses to accept your phone as a new appendage and requires you to be intellectually present and engaged in thoughtful and productive conversation, come to ours! We promise you can still have your mimosa. Can't promise there won't be a hangover but your brain and soul will leave adequately nourished and you might leave with a new friend or two. ;)
(Philip Glass is one of the most compelling composers alive. He was recently in DC and I'm super bummed I didn't get the chance to meet him. The man is a genius. This particular piece to me is a perfect example of what beautifully focused energy can accomplish in music. It's decisive but organic, it's a technical masterpiece but beautifully emotive as well. Needless to say, I'm a fan.)