Open Mouth Already A Mistake


In Zen, it is said, “open mouth, already a mistake.”

The words a teacher uses are not truth but pointers to truth. If someone believes what a teacher is saying, they have missed the point! What is being pointed to, here, now, are not concepts to be believed but truths to be realized. When the teacher uses words to point, some people take a good and honest look for themselves, see, recognize and realize the truth. Others argue about concepts! And that is when the teacher realizes once again, “open mouth, already a mistake.” And yet their realization happened because of the compassion and patience of their own teachers, and so compassion and patience keeps them making the same mistake over and over again. And sometimes a light suddenly flashes on, shines brightly and makes all the mistakes well worth while!

Zen also suggests we not mistake the finger for the moon it point to.


The Thymus Thump — A Powerful Way to Enhance Your Health and Happiness

Do you enjoy being healthy, happy, and successful? If so, it is useful to be aware that your entire body/mind system is permeated by a matrix of conscious energy or life force that affects every aspect of your life. This radiant life force has been given different names by different cultures. It is known as chi or qi in China, ki in Japan, and prana in India. The ancient Greeks called it pneuma. But no matter what it is called, this matrix of conscious energy underlies our behavioral, cognitive, neurological, and chemical responses to life.
When this life force is strong and balanced, we feel good and have a positive attitude towards our selves, our lives, and other people. We are life positive. When this life force is weak or imbalanced, we feel dis-eased and apathetic. We are life negative.
There are many ways to cultivate and balance the radiant life force. Yoga, meditation, chi kung, and tai chi chuan are Eastern ways that have existed for thousands of years. More recently, the West has contributed new ways of cultivating and balancing the radiant life force through the techniques of energy psychology.
The pioneers in energy psychology were psychiatrist Dr. John Diamond and psychologist Dr. Roger Callahan, who drew upon the principles of acupuncture and kinesiology to develop techniques that would enable individuals to directly affect the flow of energy in their body/mind system. They discovered that when we tap on certain energy points located on different areas of our body, negative emotions, fears, phobias, and painful memories can be dissolved and released from the body/mind system. When these disturbances are released, we feel good and negative behaviors and attitudes dissipate to be replaced by a new enthusiasm for life.
The treatment protocols of energy psychology are often easy, enjoyable, fast acting and thorough. One of the simplest yet powerful techniques of energy psychology is known as the Thymus Thump.
The thymus gland is the immune system’s source of T cells, specialized white blood cells that defend our bodies against disease processes, including viral infections and cancer.
Dr. Diamond discovered that, in addition to its significance to immune function, the thymus is “the master switch” of the entire energy matrix of the body/mind system. According to Dr. Diamond, the strength of our thymus is an indicator of our will to be well. High-thymus types are positive people who respond with strength and courage to life’s difficulties. The primary positive thymus attributes are faith, trust, gratitude and courage. Low-thymus types tend to be more negative and passive, with lower levels of functioning. Their primary attributes are fear, hate, and envy.
The good news is that it is easy to activate the thymus and thus our life energy with the Thymus Thump. I recommend practicing this technique first thing in the morning to activate your life energy and balance your body/mind system for a positive, healthy, and successful day. It can also be practiced throughout the day whenever you need energy, strength or focus. But don’t overdo it and cause soreness or inflammation on the sternum. A few times a day is enough. Here is how the Thymus Thump is done.
1. Locate the area of the thymus by finding the notch at the bottom of the throat created by the collarbones and sternum. From this point move down the sternum about 2 to 3 inches. The sternum acts as the head of a drum, sending vibrational energy into the thymus.
2. Using either hand, place all five fingertips together and begin thumping on the sternum over the thymus. The thumping should be firm enough to make your voice vibrate if you were talking, yet not uncomfortable. Breathe deeply from the diaphragm! Use deep inhalation and long exhalation. Slow, deep breathing helps circulate the radiant life force.
3. Dr. Diamond found that thumping with a waltz beat rhythm, 1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3, makes the technique even more effective.
4. While thumping, mentally affirm Yes! to yourself, Yes! to life, Yes! to this moment, Yes! to any difficulty you may be facing during the day.
5. Dr. David Hawkins, a psychiatrist involved in energy psychology, recommends smiling while doing the Thymus Thump. Research shows that just smiling has a very positive impact on the body/mind system. Smiling while thumping your thymus makes this technique even more powerful.
6. Continue the Thymus Thump, Yes! affirmation, deep breathing, and smiling for 30 to 60 seconds or so. Use your intuition to discover the right length of time for you. As you thump, be aware of the flow of radiant life force throughout your body/mind system!
7. Enjoy your new energy and positive attitude towards life. Your aura of positive energy will flow out and positively affect those around you. Happiness is contagious.
(Tom Thompson is an Energy Diagnosis and Treatment Methods Certified Practitioner,  hypnotherapist and facilitator of Conscious Living at The Awakened Heart Center for Conscious Living in Pittsboro, NC. He may be reached at 910-692-0995 or

Free Thinking Allowed



Human beings are herd animals – some of my students don’t like being called herd animals so they have asked me to say we are social beings instead.     Very few humans develop any real capacity to  think intelligently for themselves. Most humans pretty much think, feel and do what they are programmed to think, feel and do by family, religion, school, government, business, media, the news, the internet and the Kardashians. Oh- yes! We mustn’t forget FaceBook.

There is a high price to be paid if you wander too far afield from the herd, questioning all of the accepted assumptions and beliefs. Ask Socrates, Galileo, Bruno, Mansur al-Hallaj, Jesus, King, Leary, Reich and Gandhi. Free thinkers have never been popular in society and often end up killed or put in prison.  Perhaps it is better to have what the brujo Don Juan Matus calls “controlled folly,” and become invisible within the herd. Just blend in so no one notices you can actually use the higher capacities of your brain above and beyond the lower brain’s on-going tennis match between fear and desire and the illusion of control.

Studies have indicated that we think about 60,000 thoughts a day. Over 90% of them we have thought before. And about 70% (42,000) are fear-based and negative. Maybe we are not herd animals. Maybe we are just frightened computer simulations constantly replaying the same programs over and over again,  hoping to find some way out.

Choice-less Awareness.

Everyone who comes to our Sunday Morning Satsang at The Yoga Garden PBO comes by their own choice – as much as there is a choice.  It is always suggested that everyone hold an attitude of open-minded skepticism. Everyone is free to agree or disagree with anything presented. Or to simply be honest and abide in ” only don’t know.” This is zen mind, beginner’s mind, or shoshin. The great zen master Shunryu Suzuki said,“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.”

Since we spend most of our time in silence at the end of each satsang, this tends to drive away the spiritual thrill seekers who are out shopping for more methods, techniques, beliefs and philosophies. Silence is the barrier gate, the  gate-less gate one has to pass through to attend Satsang. Satsang is silence.

What do you think about all of this? If in fact you do think and aren’t just running feedback loops in your head. By think, I mean using your intelligence and intuition to inquire deeply into the natural koans of our lives. To question everything and look again with fresh eyes. To be prepared to live in constant wonder, delight and astonishment. If you feel this is what is happening for you, welcome to satsang!