George Adie on the Morning Preparation (Wednesday 2 November 1988, Pt I)

My immediate difficulty seems to be in the preparation in the morning,” said Gill. “What it comes back to is not starting the day in the right way. There’s not the right valuation of the time, not a proper sense of importance of the time there is for the preparation.”

“Maybe you want to take a few steps beforehand,” responded Mr Adie. “Use some water before you start, so you get really awake. This is a precious time of the day. See that it is right, that the chair is suitable, and start with a good DO. Now you’ve got half an hour to yourself. Wonderful. Your half hour. Push back all the other things. No worries in that half-hour, just work, intelligent work.”

“Teach yourself. If you were showing somebody else how to do something in an office, you wouldn’t let them start with a mess. You’d show them how to get everything they needed ready, and have them be clear about what they were doing and why. Do that for yourself.”

“Know why you start with your body, or which order you do things in. There is a value in doing it in the same order, because it saves your having to think about which order. On the other hand, it has the danger of becoming automatic. So perhaps you could just make some slight difference in the order. Anything that awakens you. I want to be able to come to the various stages. I want to be able suddenly to feel my body firmer and lighter, more based, more well-based. And I want to be able to breathe deeper, and have more resonance; and be balanced, not negative. I want to sense it and feel. Be serious and not miserable. Come to such a state.”

Perhaps the excellence of this answer prompted Janine to ask a question about the preparation which Mr Adie had taken on Friday morning for the women’s work. As I recall, this was when they met to bake the bread for the weekend. “I had quite a different attitude to the sensation. It was as if the body needed to sense itself”, she said.

Mr Adie replied: “In the sitting, when we’re like that, you are relieved of the work of thinking: “Now, shall I go there or there or there?” You are relieved of that, and it is much easier. When you are by yourself you have to conduct it yourself. And you have the choice of following habitually or not quite habitually. You have to follow according to what you need, best. You have to be aware of yourself from the word go, to a certain extent.”

“Your body should be following your instruction. You have to issue the instruction. Your head has to issue the instruction, so maybe I have to start there more.”

“When someone else is taking it, and I am following, then my head has to follow and hear, and it’s much easier. When you’re by yourself your head has to give the instruction, which means it has to be awakened.”

“It is very interesting to see which will come first, the sensation or the feeling, and how it will go. If I am sufficiently interested, everything is there almost, almost, immediately. But not always.”

“Also, it’s quite possible if you have the time to do, for five minutes first, a physical movement – half a yoga to get the body moving. I move my body very much, and get into tiny little parts, every kind of movement.”

There followed some words and sounds which I could not make out, but which evidently expressed some sort of physical manoeuvring.

“So it’s all alive,” Mr Adie continued. “That’s the yoga. Alright. There’s sensation everywhere, now I bring it in, otherwise I go like that, and it’s all stiff, but now it’s all got to move. So I want to be mobile, and suddenly this lung works, then this one. I have been forced to study all of that because of certain inner arrangements, but it has served me in very good stead. In order to get it all working I have to take the time to ensure it is all operating.”

“When we’re by ourselves, we have the chance of being by ourselves, it’s a marvellous possibility. But of course there are these dreams, dreams, dreams. Then I am not present. I want to be present. Nothing I want so much as to be present. Just that.”

He paused a moment, and added: “And also to look on myself and to see what I express.”

The third question, from Rick, was related. he said that he had been alone on Sunday and wanted to come to a fresh place in himself. After half an hour he had started to come in touch with what he needed. He came to what he felt he needed: to see and to change how he is noisy at home and plays the fool. It annoys his wife because it upsets the children, and he wanted to have more planned moments at work. It was quite definite, but half an hour later was all lost.

Yes, but you saw it. You couldn’t expect to suddenly have just one half hour or an hour and then correct all that. Because you had done that, you then saw it, and probably mitigated it slightly. That’s the way.”

“But one does a small amount of work and expects everything in return. You are in the habit of this and that. It isn’t suddenly going to stop because of one thing. Is it not similar to what someone earlier was saying: that he has taken a decision, but it goes on grinding out a repetition in thought without ceasing, instead of getting the benefit of it? See? But repeat it, repeat it.”

Joseph Azize, 17 January 2019


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