Before starting the Pastamadre project, I studied and worked for 20 years in the field of contemporary art, because one of my biggest drives in life has always been to find the deeper meaning of things.
Whenever I use my hands to create something, whether it is a work of art or a plate of freshly made pasta, I am always investigating the deeper nature of us as human beings and the mystery of life.
A good friend of mine asked me: how do I find myself?
Based on my personal experience I wrote to him a little vademecum for his daily practice, I would like to share it now with you.
Do I want to find out who I am?
Then I begin by observing that I am not only my mind (thoughts), but “I'm” also a body (perceptions/physical feelings) and a heart (emotions).
When I don’t use my mind to deal with what is required at this very moment, the mind (thoughts) mostly travels between the past (memories, regrets, judgments, etc.) and the future (speculation, risk analysis, planning, etc.)
Whenever I “consciously” recall one of these thoughts (positive or negative), I can observe what happens in my body. Each thought triggers an automatic/unconscious sensation in the body based on previous experience. The sensation in the body causes an emotion. A negative thought usually causes feelings of contractions and tensions therefore perceived as negative emotion. A positive thought causes feelings of openness and relaxation therefore is perceived as positive emotion.
If you want to find out who you REALLY are, then it is going never been enough to think about yourself and your life. To know yourself and your true nature you cannot skip the step of observing and investigating your body as well. First do as often as possible a "check in" in the body.
Consciously bring attention to the body from within and notice if you can feel your body from within.
Ask yourself: What do I sense and perceive right now in my body?
DO NOT THINK about the body but FEEL it from within!
What you observe and notice is critical information to understand who you are, how you are conditioned, which automatic patterns-reactions you experience, which are your emotional triggers.
Without that information it is like wanting to build a house without knowing how the materials you want to use work. You “are made” not only of a head, but also of a body and a heart. Look with curiosity at what you discover there.
Observe with kindness.
This is a daily practice. Anywhere, whenever you can is a good moment to do it.
Do it for example while you are engaged in your kitchen, preparing food.
Stop 2 seconds and ask yourself: What do I feel now, at this very moment in my body? Observe what you might notice.
Have a good practice and remember, always with you on the journey!
With much love