Inner  Frontier
Fourth Way Spiritual Practice


Inner Work

For week of January 11, 2016

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The Doorway Exercise

(Presence Trigger 4)

To remind us to reawaken into presence, we can work to form certain simple, positive habits. One such is to come into presence every time we walk through a doorway. It sounds and is simple. But it requires a sustained effort of active and self-cognizant intention to get to the point where doorways do remind us to be present.

The exercise is this: as we walk through a doorway, we bring our attention into being in our body and into being here as our self. We let the doorway remove the fog of half-awareness and random thoughts that usually surrounds us. As we walk through the doorway, it is as if we were walking through a curtain of energy that shimmers right through us and reinvigorates our contact with our body.

The difficulty is that doorways come upon us unannounced and that we pass through them rather quickly. So we might remember about the doorway exercise only after passing through. This is unlike, for example, eating presence, wherein we might remember to be present at any time during the extended period of the meal and then be able to work on presence for some of the remainder of the mealtime.

Doorways are too quick for that. We need to be alert and aware of the doorway as a trigger for presence before we reach it. Nevertheless, if we remember about the exercise after passing through a doorway, we can just turn to presence right then. The important thing is to be present and to work on being present more. Doorways can help us with that.

The doorway exercise can teach us valuable lessons. For example, we can be in a room, knowing that soon we will walk out the door and intending to be present when we do so. Then by the time we actually move toward and into the doorway, we have lost contact with that intention to be present and forgotten the exercise. This shows our distractibility. It shows how easily our intentions evaporate. It shows that to make an intention effective, we need to get fully behind it. So we try again and maybe the next time we do remember to be present at the door. And this shows the value of persevering.

Each morning, we set our intention to work on this doorway exercise that day. Even if we remember it very few times, or even just once, it will be of value. If we persevere, doorways can become a frequent trigger for us to be present.

For this week, please practice being present whenever you pass through a doorway. Be in your body as the one who is walking through that doorway.


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