Radical Discontinuity to Change Your Life and the World

In Toltec teachings, this is also called "not-doing".  It's the act of doing something in a different way, just to break old patterns so your brain, and soul, doesn't get stuck in a rut.  Taking a different route, dancing for no reason, making a different choice for something in which you usually make the same choice.  This keeps your brain fresh and happy, and also has been known to ward off memory issues, especially later in life.  But most of all?  It it helps you to see things in a new light and by doing so, you can change, and heal, your entire life.

The greatest way to practice this act is to pay attention to your automatic negative thoughts and disrupt them by thinking in a new way.  My mother taught me to think terrible thoughts about strangers.  To see a fat person wearing booty shorts, or someone with a seven color mohawk, or even just seeing someone wearing ill-fitting clothes.  I would automatically think "Oh god" and I sometimes I would even say it out loud to the people I was with.  But then one day I realized those words were not mine, they were my mothers.  And who was I without her thoughts in my head?  So, I challenged my brain to think in new ways.  I would see a fat person wearing short-shorts and while I would notice, I forced myself to see the person in a new way.  "I wish I had her confidence, she looks at home in her skin.  That's a wonderful way to live.  My goal is to be like that."  And eventually, those thoughts became normal, and even later than that, I stopped noticing people who look different from me all together.  

Once you've changed the way you react to something and it becomes a new pattern, you should pick a different pattern to change.  But not only that, you should be choosing new patterns every single day to challenge.  What do you do in the same way all the time?  Today, choose something different.  It doesn't have to be a huge thing, it just needs to be new.  This keeps your brain, and your soul, fresh and happy.  

Another great way to challenge your patterns in a way that will actually change your entire life is to learn to see other humans as reflections of your own bias.  They aren't, but to realize what you think about them is.  And when you can see that, you can fully accept others who are different from you as the same as you.  Even if they are very, very different.  This is the Buddhist way.  How to do that is to follow the first four parts of the eightfold path, which are right understanding, right thinking, right speech, and right action.  Because when you understand other humans and why they do the things they do (read Don Miguel Ruiz's "The Voice of Knowledge" to learn that), you can think about them properly, speak to them properly, and treat them properly.  It also teaches you to understand yourself properly. so you can think about yourself properly, speak about yourself properly, and treat yourself properly.  To me, this act is the ultimate radical discontinuity.  To challenge the entire system of the human race.  This single act can cure racism, sexism, political divides, and can even, combat homelessness.  We all think that it's natural to automatically think negative things about other people, but it's simply not true.  It's just a pattern that humanity has created for itself without anyone ever questioning it.  So, we all just follow that pattern like little the automatons as assume we are.  But it's time to disrupt that pattern and challenge it.  Because if we can, we can change the entire world.  

Or just us.  But then again, we can change the world by starting with us.  I hate Pedo Jackson, but his song, starting with the "man in the mirror" applies here.  We can't change anyone else without first changing us.  

"Not-doing" is a far more simple act, though.  It's disrupting your day to day patterns so your brain doesn't get stale.  But you can do both.  You can change your daily patterns, as well as global patterns at the same time.  You can do big things with little things, as well as little things with little things.  But they all add up.  If you want to heal and grow and change, then consider disrupting your daily patterns as a way to reinvigorate your soul.  Pick a new cup to use for breakfast.  Do something backwards.  Eat something different for a meal where you'd normally choose the same thing.  Change your thought patterns.  

Change your understanding, your thoughts, your speech, and your actions, change your life.  

And the world.  

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