Posted by: aspicco | June 25, 2014

Psychics + Mediums + What I Understand: Part 1

Ever since I was a young child, I was curious about people who identified themselves as psychics and mediums. Regardless of all the scientific dismissing of their skills, it seemed pretty obvious to me that there was ample proof that some of these people were genuine. And so, over the course of the past 50+ years I have done my own research. I am not a scientist. What I have written below is not intended as any kind of scientific proof, but merely sharing the things I have observed, the background material I have read about the phenomena, and the ongoing conclusions I have come to about the topic.

 Predicting the Future

When I have gotten readings from psychics, it has usually been a mix of current information about me that helps verify the psychics’ skills, and information about upcoming events in my life. Generally speaking, when I have connected well with the psychic, about 75% of the information about the future has been correct. So, what is the psychic connecting to? Where is this information coming from? Why don’t all the predictions come true? Do we have free will, or are we merely fated?

I think all of us are much bigger than we realize. I think deep inside us, whether you want to call it the subconscious or your “inner self” or your soul, we are already planning our future. And I believe on some level, we have already set things in motion. So I think what psychics tap into are our deeply embedded future plans.

I have seen people essentially negate the psychic predictions they were told, when they were repelled by them and did not want them to manifest. I do not believe anything in the future is locked in stone. As an example, suppose I am driving from New York to Los Angeles, and along the way I make a turn that will take me to Miami. Suppose that when I start seeing palm trees I pull over and consult a psychic. And the psychic tells me “in two days you will be in Miami.” Now, I have a couple of choices here. I can keep driving the road I am on, and in two days I get to Miami and say “Wow! That psychic was right!” Or, I can say to myself “but I don’t want to go to Miami” and reset my travel plans. That is an example to me of how people respond to psychic readings. Either you accept them and the future will manifest as you have already set it up, or you decide to change your future. I believe the future is a very flexible place. So I think the further a psychic tries to read ahead, the more fuzzy things become, because there are more and more variables entering the picture.

I also suspect if a person is “lost” or has no idea what to do next, or where their life is going, then a psychic’s reading will be limited at best. After all if a psychic is reading the potential future you are creating, and you aren’t actively, mentally, spiritually creating a future, but just drifting along aimlessly, what is there for a psychic to predict?

So really, the way I see it, all a psychic can tap into is what you are already creating… and you still have the free will to change it.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •
I have recently begun a co-hosted internet radio show called “What’s Your Sign? I Have Your Number” with Sharita Star, fellow astrologer and also a numerologist. It is on the HeyZ Radio Network on Monday evenings from 7pm to 9pm at

We discuss astrology, numerology and have assorted guests, ranging from fellow astrologers to psychics, mediums, entertainers, tarot card experts, reiki masters and all things metaphysical.

If you have any trouble listening, go to the Chat Room on their website when the show is on the air, and you can listen there. If the sound gets spotty during the broadcast, refresh your browser.

We are working on creating an archive of previous shows.

Posted by: aspicco | June 17, 2014

All Of Us Are Creative. Every Day. (Yes, You Too)

“Creativity” is a word that has, in my opinion, lost some of its meaning over the years. When people use a phrase like “creative types,” I imagine, in many of our minds, we picture painters, writers, filmmakers, actors and musicians. Maybe some of us think of the cutting edge scientists, too, like an Einstein. And yes, they are creative, but so is everyone else.

Creativity is much more than just arts and sciences. The two planets in astrology associated with creativity are Venus and Neptune. Yes, Venus is tilted a little more toward the arts and beauty, but Neptune adds another element to the concept of creativity. Neptune is also steeped in spirituality and intuition. Creativity is an intuitive process. I consider it very unlikely that a person will be creative using a logical, linear system. Most creativity usually has some kind of an unexpected “aha” moment.

Any time we are confronted with a problem and we come up with a new solution, we are being creative. Any time we come up with an idea and figure out a way to reach the goal, we are being creative. And this applies even at the most basic levels of life. You are planning a dinner. Two more guests than expected show up. One way or another, you find a way around the problem. Perhaps you order delivery, or perhaps you raid your closet and whip up a couple of extra side. I’m sure anyone reading this can come up with many examples of suddenly having to creatively change the situation.

One of the most basic areas of creativity in most people’s lives is raising children. Probably nothing will challenge your linear, logical sense of order and structure than a child asking questions, or simply behaving in some curious way. And your child is your creation. Together, you and someone else literally physically created your child, or, if you adopted, you are still shaping and creating. Interactions with children tend to be fairly creative. Just ask a schoolteacher. In astrology, the fifth house is the house of your children. It is also the house associated with “creative self-expression.” That is a fascinating combination to me.

And even on the job, all of us are constantly confronted with things that require our creativity. How do you get sales up? How do you finish a project on time? How do you form a functioning team with the other people in your department? How do you work around shortages?

Essentially, what I’m putting forth is, we are all creative all the time. And when we stop being creative, we all begin to complain that our life is in a rut, or that we are going “nowhere.” Every day in every way we are constantly creating our lives and our reality. I know many of us, myself included, often want to blame circumstances or other people for our lives heading in a direction we didn’t want it to, but really we have so much more latitude than we realize. There is always a solution to any problem. It may not be an easy one, it may not be a smooth one, but there is always a solution. We just need to realize how creative we actually are. Look around. We have had a major hand in creating everything around us. And we can create many, many more things.

Create the life you want.

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •
I have recently begun a co-hosted internet radio show called “What’s Your Sign? I Have Your Number” with Sharita Star, fellow astrologer and also a numerologist. It is on the HeyZ Radio Network on Monday evenings from 7pm to 9pm at

We discuss astrology, numerology and have assorted guests, ranging from fellow astrologers to psychics, mediums, entertainers, tarot card experts, reiki masters and all things metaphysical.

If you have any trouble listening, go to the Chat Room on their website when the show is on the air, and you can listen there. If the sound gets spotty during the broadcast, refresh your browser.

We are working on creating an archive of previous shows.

Posted by: aspicco | May 27, 2014

Reiki + Me + A Surprising Experience on the Train

This past weekend I was on a train with my wife, and we heard a sound I first thought was someone’s very unusual laughing, but it didn’t quite sound right. A few seats ahead of us, a young woman slumped against her boyfriend. He called her name a few times. She was having a seizure.

The next few moments were a little confusing, but people flocked to the couple; someone ran and got the conductor. 911 was called. There would be a medical team meeting the train at the next stop.

I have no medical first aid training, so I closed my eyes and focused on sending her reiki energy. I was listening to the conversational hubbub all around, but in my mind’s eye all I could see was a bright red blob of color. I could hear people trying to talk to her, but she wasn’t responding. Two young doctors were located in another car. I don’t know what they did for her, but after a few moments she was responding to questions. And as I continued sending her reiki, I noticed behind my closed eyelids the red blob of color was becoming pinker, and lighter, until it was an off white. The change in color seemed to coincide with her alertness and awareness. Then, we were at the next train station, the EMT technicians entered the train, and after a short while, with her boyfriend helping her walk, they all exited. I was impressed in general by the outpouring of concern and care for this woman. Anyone that could pitched in, did, and in a gentle and genuine way.

The vision of the changing blob of color in my mind was, I think, kind of a psychic reading or impression. I believe the color changed to reflect her state of health. I know my reiki master would probably disapprove of this, as he is very strict traditionalist in the practice of reiki, and has always discouraged doing any psychic reading of the person you are reiki-ing. As I understand him, he feels all attention and intent should be focused on channeling the reiki energy. I understand his reasons, but I did not choose to see the changing blob of color, so I’m giving myself a pass.

But something else happened, something that surprised me. I found myself feeling great waves of emotion afterwards. My eyes welled up with tears. My wife looked at me and asked, “Are you okay?” I tried to answer but I felt if I started to speak I would’ve started sobbing, and it seemed inappropriate, but I was able to choke out the words “I can’t talk. I’m okay.” These feelings continued for several minutes, as the train pulled away from the station and we continued on our way.

My wife and I discussed what happened. I said I wondered if I was picking up the woman’s emotions about her seizure. The feeling I had was one of “No… no, no… not again… not now.” The woman seemed quite young, perhaps 18 or 19 years old. When the medical help had asked the boyfriend if he had ever seen her have a seizure prior to now, he said yes.

I’m writing this particular blog post because I am a little surprised and a little confused. I have been reiki-ing people for 2 1/2 to 3 years now, and although I have picked up impressions from them as I was reiki-ing them, I have never had the emotional response I had this past weekend. So I am asking other Reiki practitioners or any other healers, to please offer any feedback about what I experienced, and what their experiences have been in similar situations.

Thanking you in advance…

• • • • • • • • • • • • • •
I have recently begun a co-hosted internet radio show called “What’s Your Sign? I Have Your Number” with Sharita Star, fellow astrologer and also a numerologist. It is on the HeyZ Radio Network on Monday evenings from 7pm to 9pm at

We discuss astrology, numerology and have assorted guests, ranging from fellow astrologers to psychics, mediums, entertainers, tarot card experts, reiki masters and all things metaphysical.

If you have any trouble listening, go to the Chat Room on their website when the show is on the air, and you can listen there. If the sound gets spotty during the broadcast, refresh your browser.

We are working on creating an archive of previous shows.

In astrology, traditionally the 7th house, the house of Libra, was the house of marriage, though these days it tends to be referred to as the house of one-to-one relationships, including marriage, partnership and close personal friendships. It is also the house of open enemies, yet no mention is made of love or romance. What is to be made of that? And Libra, an air sign, is in an intellectual element, not an emotional one. Libra is also a male, positive and yang oriented sign.

Historically speaking, for millennia, marriages were viewed as business contracts. In some cultures, marriages were arranged almost as early as birth, and if things worked out well, maybe you ended up loving your spouse and were loved in return. Or else marriage partners were chosen for practical reasons. Could the man & woman form an efficient unit in a farming household? Did they each fulfill the roles they were expected to perform?

Romantic love as a component of a marriage is a relatively modern creation. The term “romance” itself originates with the medieval ideal of chivalry and even then, half the tales of knights and ladies-in-waiting involve star-crossed lovers married to other partners. Not a hopeful situation, and hardly a partnership, though certainly dramatic.

The house of romance is the 5th house, the house of Leo. “Romance” is, curiously, not directly connected to “marriage” and “one-to-one relationships.” This house also includes creative self-expression, pleasure and children. And Leo is a fire sign, and fire is about the need to act, to do, and to accomplish. It certainly adds some fire to the concept of romance and pleasure. But Leo is also a male, positive and yang oriented sign. Still no watery emotions.

But if romance is connected to children, then that leads us to the 4th house, the house of Cancer, which includes home, mother, and childhood (along with the kitchen & the roots of one’s psyche). But this seems more like the results of romance, not romantic love itself. But Cancer is a water sign, the element of emotions, and it is a female, negative, yin oriented sign, and more prone to being receptive instead of assertive.

We do have one obvious sign and house to address: Scorpio, associated with the 8th house. Scorpio is a water sign, and a very passionate one. We have all heard stories of intense, emotionally driven Scorpios. The 8th house is also connected with the concept of partnerships, but this is about what you get from your partners, not necessarily an equal balance here. It connects you to your partner’s resources, not yours. And, of course, this is also known as the house of sex, death and rebirth/renewal. These are subjects connected to love and relationships, but this is the primal stuff. This is about sex as both a primordial deep-seated connection between two people, and sex as part of the endless cycle of death and rebirth.

So what do I draw from all this? One-to-one relationships are complex. They involve thought, emotion, and action. They involve female and male energy, receptivity and assertiveness, and yin and yang. They involve birth, death, creative self-expression, pleasure, practicality and reciprocity. I discussed 5 signs and houses out of 12, and I could make a case for a couple of other signs and houses that bringing additional components to the one-to-one mix. So one-to-one relationships take up more than half our lives, especially in the modern world, a world where there is much more interactions with other people than ever before.

No man (or woman) is an island. We all need each other, and we all affect each other, all the time. Remember that as you go about your day.

I will, too.


• • • • • • • • • • • • • •
I have recently begun a co-hosted internet radio show called “What’s Your Sign? I Have Your Number” with Sharita Star, fellow astrologer and also a numerologist. It is on the HeyZ Radio Network on Monday evenings from 7pm to 9pm at

We discuss astrology, numerology and have assorted guests, ranging from fellow astrologers to psychics, mediums, entertainers, tarot card experts, reiki masters and all things metaphysical.

If you have any trouble listening, go to the Chat Room on their website and you can listen there.

This is a quickly-written blog to try to drive home some clear fresh perspective on this topic. I covered this a little more in depth a few weeks ago ( but it seems to me there is a certain low-level madness or hysteria developing about it as it approaches.

Any Grand Cross (sometimes also referred to as a Grand Square) symbolizes a great amount of available potential energy, that really needs to be expressed. The transiting Grand Cross, the one we are experiencing at its peak for the next two weeks, is indicating a lot of potential energy available worldwide for new changes, new ideas and growth & evolution. Some people may feel this more intensely than others, but that is what this one is about. This can be a good time to take steps to make positive changes, and finalize them.

Can this Grand Cross be a problem? Well sure. People make mountains out of molehills all the time. Every day some people take blessings and turn them into curses. That’s part of what free will is about… not always the best use of free will… but this is what some people do. It takes work to steer things in a self-sabotaging path. It takes resistance and maybe a dose of fear, too. But this is not the most likely scenario. Most things in nature flow well, when we let them.

In any event, this Grand Cross will fade by late April as Mars moves out of orb with Jupiter, Uranus & Pluto. And yes, the effects will linger. Ideally if you are making positive changes, you will want the effects to linger, right? Take charge. This is your life. Be open and flexible, try something new, move forward.

And keep in mind, anyone born during these two weeks will have that Grand Cross in their natal chart. These children will have to live, tap into, work with, and manifest the symbolism of the Grand Cross throughout their lives. Most of us only deal with a Grand Cross for a few weeks at a time.

The word coincidence is often used to suggest a fluke occurrence. defines is as “a striking occurrence of two or more events at one time apparently by mere chance.” But I don’t buy that. I am a firm believer in synchronicity, and defines that as “the simultaneous occurrence of causally unrelated events and the belief that the simultaneity has meaning beyond mere coincidence.”

I have been guesting on a BlogTalkRadio show off and on for a couple of years now. ( The show consists of about 30+ minutes of chatting on an astrological topic, and then we open the phone lines for several 20-minute-plus off-the-cuff astrology readings for callers. I often ask if they have a particular question to help focus the reading, but some just want a general look at their chart and a look at the near future.

What always impresses me is, the people calling during a particular broadcast usually have similar charts and/or similar questions.

Some examples:

In one show, all four callers inquired about what was going on in their careers. And all four of them had their Sun in the 10th house (the house of career, and public image, among other topics). And oddly enough, all four had Grand Trines to their suns. (That’s three or more planets all trining, or aspecting each other at 120 degrees.) And though they all had different Sun Signs, and different planets forming their Grand Trines, they still all had that 10th house Sun.

In another show, all three callers were, for different reasons in their charts, dealing with their tendencies to be over-compassionate, over-empathetic and ending up being treated as doormats by doing a lot (maybe too much) for other people and too little for themselves. And all three were involved in care taking. One was a nurse, one was a home attendant, and one was spending all her time taking care of her ill relative.

And then there was the show when everyone who called was dealing with Saturn (limitations, focus) transiting their natal Neptune (idealism, spirituality, intuition, creativity) and they all were feeling kind of flat, both a little lost & depressed. It made sense. Saturn transiting Neptune can symbolize that to a person.

I am not trying to prove astrology. I personally know it works from years of practicing it, and seeing the evidence for myself, but if I was a research-oriented person, I am sure I would find reasons for these themed callers… perhaps where the Moon was that evening, or which sign was rising during the show, but it doesn’t matter all that much to me. I just feel it supplies ample evidence that there is “something” that connects us, and echoes throughout us all.

I mean, it makes sense, doesn’t it? We all have incidents in our lives when it just seems so unlikely that something happened by “chance.” Maybe we took a route home different than before, and bumped into an old friend? Maybe a friend’s favorite song comes on the radio just before they call you? The synchronicity is, in my eyes, a lot deeper than that, but I think if we can start paying a little more attention to these so-called “happy accidents” (which I believe are anything but) we might find we are all a lot more connected than we consciously notice.

• • • • • • • • •
Starting on Monday, April 14th, 2014, from 7pm to 9pm, I will be co-hosting, with Sharita Star, a new revamped version of the radio show “What’s Your Sign? I Have Your Number” on the Hey Z Radio Network. It will be 2 hours discussing Astrology and Numerology, including interviews and discussions with special guests from the metaphysical world. The goal is helping people open up to more possibilities, increased awareness and having some fun on air. The show was originally Sharita Star’s creation, and after being a guest on her show a number of times, we decided to join together. More details to follow as the debut approaches…

Posted by: aspicco | February 26, 2014

Which Way Is Retrograde?

This past Dec 22nd, 2013, Venus went retrograde, and then it went direct on Jan 31, 2014… but then Mercury went retrograde a few days later on Feb 6 and won’t go direct until Feb 28 but… but then Mars goes retrograde on March 3rd until May 19th… and all of the outer planets (Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune + Pluto) spend a few months every year going retrograde. And Mercury does retrograde 3x a year! What can a poor soul do?

In astrology, “retrograde motion” (Rx) is when it looks like a planet is “backing up” instead of going forward. We know it isn’t really backing up, but planets in retrograde motion often indicate a kind of reversal-of-fortune, based on what the planets symbolize. And if the Rx is directing affecting any of your natal planets, you might feel it a little stronger than others.

Since I have become an astrologer, more and more people are aware of Mercury Rx. I hear people blaming it for all kinds of mishaps. Mercury symbolizes communications, local travel and technology (among other things) and so Mercury Retrograde can bring about dropped phone calls, missed appointments, cancelled plans and maybe some computer issues.

I believe nothing is astrology is doomed to yield bad results, but you do need to work with some things, as they may not flow smoothly unless you are paying attention.

Since the outer planets spend so much time retrograde every year, this post is not concerning itself with them, but is taking a look at the “personal” planets retrograde: Mercury, Venus & Mars.

OK, yes… Venus Rx can symbolize reversals with relationships, and Mars Rx can indicate actions that do not turn out as expected… but there is something else going on when planets retrograde. Many things in life do not happen on a straight path, and retrograde favors those situations. Retrograde favors all the “RE” actions… like REassessing, REpairing, REexamining, REbuilding, REcreating. If you started a project and it went wrong, Mars and/or Mercury Rx are excellent times to re-tackle it, re-write and finish it. If your relationship with someone else (romantic and/or close friend) has hit a snag, then Venus Rx is reassessment time.

And even if you don’t know exactly when a planet goes retrograde, if something in your life is not moving forward no matter how hard you try, it is time to reassess and reexamine… maybe even simply taking a break is all you need to do to see it fresh, but sometimes it has to be torn down and rebuilt from scratch. Maybe… maybe even retreat might be called for. Even seasoned generals know there are times when retreating is the best option all around.

So when the astrological worrywarts start cursing Mercury Rx, (or any other Rx) and blaming it for everything going wrong, take a positive backwards view of things. Maybe plan ahead and leave a little extra time to allow for snafus and mix-ups. Maybe try taking a fresh look at an old problem.

Life can sometimes be like a maze: when you go down the wrong path and end up at a dead end, it’s time to back up and take a fresh route.

Posted by: aspicco | February 11, 2014

The Big Bad Grand Cross is Coming…

Ok… it’s big but not necessarily so bad, but I see a fair number of astrologers these days getting all hot and bothered over it, so I wanted to address it.

Every now and then, 4 or more planets in the sky get into a configuration we refer to as a Grand Cross. This consists of at least two planets on opposite sides of the sky that are 90º from at least two other planets on opposite sides of the sky. If you were to draw a line between these planets, it would form a cross, and so we call it a Grand Cross.

And so, roughly from April 20th to April 27th, 2014, Pluto will be at 13º Capricorn opposing Jupiter at 13º – 14º Cancer, while Uranus will be at 13º Aries opposing Mars at 14º -12º Libra. And Pluto & Jupiter are squaring Uranus & Mars. Now, due to the slow speed of both Pluto & Uranus, the square between them has activated a few times so far and besides getting trigger with the Grand Cross, that square will activate a couple of more times yet.

So let’s look at that square as a starting point. Pluto symbolizes major transformation & change. Uranus symbolizes freedom, new ideas and some chaos. This square has been with us since June 2012 and will be recurring until its last connection in March 2015. Pluto is transformation, Uranus is often surprising change, and over the past couple of years we have had transformative & surprising change in attitudes & laws regarding the rights of homosexuals to marry, and the legal status of marijuana. We have seen a Pope elected that is espousing some remarkably different ideas than the public has come to expect from a Pope. I am sure you can look around you & see more radical transforming changes lately.

But this time around, in April, Jupiter opposing Pluto, and Mars opposing Uranus, will augment the Pluto/Uranus square.. And on the 20th the Moon will be hanging out with Pluto, and on the 27th, it will be next to Uranus. This IS a heady mix. And if you have any planets in your chart at 12º to 16º of a cardinal sign (Aries, Cancer. Libra and Capricorn) you will feel this Grand Cross personally too.

My general advice is, stay as loose and as flexible as possible. Change is afoot and being adaptable is an easier way to adjust to change. And this is deep change, Plutonian change, not just throwing a new coat of paint on something to spruce it up. This is change down in the root systems.

An astrological colleague of mine really put it succinctly and poetically in her blog, which I have extracted and quoted below (italics and bold are mine). “The Cardinal signs are all about control… it comes down to this: if you don’t run your life, someone else will. Be aware that we are going to be dealing with a Cardinal T-square all the way into July 2014. Some may groan, but I see this as a chance to set your life up the way you want it. To work with this energy, your philosophy (Jupiter) may have to change (Uranus), drastically (Pluto). But any effort (Mars) you make to liberate yourself is likely to pay long term dividends. ~ Elsa Panizzon from

Posted by: aspicco | November 27, 2013

Protection from…?

Years ago, when I first began meditating, I was taught to create an energy aura around myself to “protect” myself. Since I was new to the practice, I was not yet inclined to openly question any instructions. In any educational situation, I believe in learning the traditional way first before adapting and customizing anything.

But as the years rolled on, and I learned more spiritual stuff, again that notion of protection turned up. I studied crystals, and was told certain crystals were “protection” from an assortment of things: negative spirits, negative energy, psychic attacks.

After awhile, the term protection started to bother me. I have a natural aversion to anything that seems purely fear-based. Mind you, I have a healthy respect for genuine, in-the-moment fear, because that is usually my intuition telling me there is something to be concerned about it. Listening to that type of fear is helpful, but this ongoing generalized fear and this generic protection, bothered me.

Being a fan of some of the teachings of Taoism, I believe very strongly in the dynamics of opposites that flow together in cycles, like the idea of yin & yang. Astrology also makes use of the ideas of opposites helping to define each other. You can better understand Aries by realizing it is the opposite of Libra, and how they relate to, connect and reflect upon each other. The same holds true for other oppositions like Taurus & Scorpio or Gemini & Sagittarius, etc. And night helps define day, and day, night.

So, I thought, that means protecting myself when there was nothing in the here and now to fear, implies a potential threat. There is, I feel, a law of balances in our lives. Some use the term “karma” to define it. And then I considered some of the teachings of Seth ( He has said “You get what you concentrate on.” Based on the concept of opposites, was I also creating a threat every time I asked for, or created, protection? Was I creating my own demons by using a fear-based concept? And if so, how could I change that?

A few years ago, I started attending a group meditation that lasted 60 to 90 minutes. The goal was to welcome all sorts of interesting & useful information from our intuitive selves, and any other entities that might be willing to contact us, or speak through us. The first few sessions were a bit chaotic, as everything but the kitchen sink came through, spiritually speaking, but we soon started declaring our intent with each meditation session, and focused the group, and thing went more smoothly.

So I realized there was a way of focusing and selecting energy without the idea of protection. And I wanted to find the right word, so I could frame my request clearly. The word I use these days is “filter.”

It can be difficult at times to maintain a life free of ongoing nameless fear. Sometimes we can be so inculcated with fear-based attitudes from newspapers, television, government & religious warnings, it can be difficult to maintain a daily level of emotional, mental & spiritual flow. These days when I begin to meditate, or do any similar activity, I create a filter around me that permits me to receive the things I need to receive. I believe the choice of words and concepts is important, as it sets intent.

Posted by: aspicco | November 21, 2013

Guest Post/Repost: Doing Nothing

I have never done this before with my blog, but I stumbled across some writing today on Reddit and was impressed. I very lightly edited it for clarity, but I do not know who to attribute as author, because it was posted by someone ID’d as ALooc. So thank you, ALooc…
• • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Doing Nothing

Doing nothing is the wrong concept. You never do nothing, because even when your body is still, your mind is churning and processing information.

I have a strong dislike against “wasting time.” I don’t like myself when I spend time on nonsense. And so I fill all of my day with “constructive things.” My walk to work is filled with podcasts, the time waiting for the food to bake is filled with news articles. While eating I entertain myself with shows or TED talks or whatnot.

The best decision I made in the last few weeks was to stop most of that.

Aristotle recommended taking walks—especially while discussing with another person. And now, walking to work with just my mind, the scenery and passing people as company, I feel more relaxed. I feel serene. I learn to understand myself better, just the way a meditation clears my mind. I mentally plan my evening or reflect on the day—conflicts with the boss, troubles, things I achieved, things I learned. I finally notice the food I’m eating.

The list goes on. I’m not going to stop consuming information and I’m not going to stop using podcasts on some long walks—but I live more consciously, more aware, more relaxed. It’s small changes and suddenly I’m happier and can handle stress better.

I think we all tend to drown our minds—emotions, thoughts, worries, little wins, conversations we had or want to have and much more—we drown all of it in manufactured emotions (reddit, games, tv) or interesting, valuable, but ultimately unnecessary information.

When we say “doing nothing” we confuse ourselves. We are doing things all the time, and our brains never take a break. But when you “do nothing” you finally allow your brain to breathe and process all the things it needs and wants to process. I think all these modern diseases—sleeping problems, stress, depression, short attention spans, even obesity—they have a lot to do with the fact that we don’t allow our brains  to breathe anymore. We bombard them with stuff—either information or, worse, emotion—and in order to handle this stuff, other important tasks—’housekeeping’ tasks such as consolidating memories, reflecting about one’s feelings and health and happiness, planning healthy food, considering how to bring up that issue with the boss—are drowned in a sea of emotion and information. They are drowned in a wonderful wealth of “stuff to process” that ultimately prevents our brains from ensuring their own— our own—mental and physical health.

We are indoctrinated with an idea that time needs to be “spent”. That’s why you wonder what people do when they don’t do all the things you do. I tell you what: they engage with others and, more importantly, with themselves. They learn who they are and what they value. Without any effort their minds plan the future and consolidate memories of the past.

That, I think, is what it means to be truly alive. “The unexamined life is not worth living,” said Socrates. The modern version is maybe this:
The person that lives solely in emotions and information from outside oneself—the person that never pulls out of a messy reality and gives itself over to a mental spa, a time of healing and processing, a time of reflecting, feeling, thinking, seeing, worrying, planning, smiling—that person doesn’t live.

Take a walk. Leave the iPod and your phone at home. Find some trees or a place with a nice view. It’s even okay if you just lie down on the couch or stand in the shower or sit at your desk, with your eyes looking past the screen. Just be you, for a moment. And then watch, carefully, without judgment, all those things that happen in your mind while you “do nothing.”

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