2×4 Zen (a lesson in lessons)

Note: Getting this one can potentially save you a world of pain.

A 2×4 is a piece of wood. It is the basic building block of residential construction.

Zen is a kind of spiritual self-help program.

Here’s how 2×4 Zen works:

Let’s say there is some lesson, some information you need to understand, a message to receive; something you need to learn or a life change that you need to make. Well, first the Universe gives it to you gently.

It says, “Hey Kid! Did you hear about suchandsuch?”

Now you may or may not pay a lot of attention to this message, and may simply hurry on with your busy day.

A few days later you might be talking to someone and out of the blue they say, “Hey Kid! Did you hear about suchandsuch?”

Now you may think it quite odd that for no apparent reason suchandsuch is mentioned in your presence once again. Then you get on with your busy day. A couple of weeks later you visit your long lost cousin that you haven’t seen in ages. As you are catching up she reaches into her handbag and pulls out a book, “SUCHANDSUCH REVEALED”.

Now, maybe you forgot your reading glasses, or maybe you really just don’t want to think about suchandsuch at all, but let’s say that somehow you miss the cue.

The Universe has been lobbing you softballs up until now, at worst a paper airplane to the side of the head. And if you do not pay attention, one day the Universe is going to WHUP you upside that thick skull of yours. But before it does that it might just give you a CLOSE CALL.

We’ve all had that close call. The one that starts, “It’s a miracle anyone survived that fillintheblank”.

THAT is the whistle of the 2×4 coming through the air to whup your sorry you-know-what. Do yourself a favor. Learn to duck. Quickly.

Hopefully you agree with me that paying attention, that “listening” is way better than getting whupped with a 2×4!

“OK. That’s great”, you might say. “But how do I pay attention more? I have a busy schedule. If I pay attention any harder I’ll give myself a migraine!”

My immune system buffer signals me this way. First I begin to feel very small. I breathe in little panting breaths and my face goes pale. Then I begin to feel panicked and claustrophobic and my focus becomes very narrow.

My wife and I have a key phrase we use when this happens.

If I say, “Shit! I gotta get out of here quick.”

Then she says, “I got it honey. Why don’t you wait for me in the car?”

Life should ALWAYS run so smoothly.