Welcome to Mondo Samu - Questions and Answers about my self-work.

Mondō: "questions and answers"; a recorded collection of dialogues between a pupil and teacher.
Samu: Work service; meditation in work.


Saturday, February 5, 2011


I don't have a lot to write about this, but I wanted to take a moment to recognize a milestone.  This blog is about learning from one another, and about my self-work, and to that end I wanted to let everyone know where this path I started down seven months ago this week has led.

Seven months ago, I stepped on a scale and saw - to my utter astonishment - the numbers that FINALLY snapped me awake and made me take action.  Those numbers were 3-4-9.  I've written about this before, so I won't repeat the story, but the short version is I weighed myself before a vacation and was positively stunned to see that I essentially weighed 350 pounds!

That moment came after a number of other factors which, I guess, started with a visit to an old friend's place during which the torture he had put himself through in life culminated, during my visit, with him being rushed to the hospital in congestive heart failure.  That same weekend, one of my other dear friends showed up after no contact for 15 years and was significantly heavier than when I last saw him.  He was always rail thin, so this new obese version of him, was unsettling.  Anyhow, point is, that I decided that weekend that I needed to do something drastic about my weight, but it wasn't until a couple of months later when I stepped on that scale that things clicked in to place and I knew I needed to act fast.

On the second day of that vacation I discovered "Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Living" by Thich Nhat Hanh and Dr. Lilian Cheung.  This book, as I have written here many times and in many ways, illuminated the path that I had started walking down.  It didn't actually make the decision for me, but it showed me the way, once I had decided, to where I wanted to be.

Savor: Mindful Eating, Mindful Life

Today, seven months later, I have lost three fourths of the weight I set out to lose in one year.  With five months still to go on my goal time frame, I have already lost SEVENTY FIVE POUNDS!  I won't go on about that much here as, around the 70 pound mark just recently, I was humbly honored to be featured on the Savor The Book Blog if you want to read about that.

I feel better, I live better, I eat better, I'm happier, my life is changed in countless ways.  My goal is 100 pounds, and then re-evaluation, and I WILL get there.  The truly interesting thing is, however, that I no longer care about that goal.  Sure, I want to achieve it.  Sure I want to be as healthy as possible, but I have already achieved the thing that matters.  I have truly, meaningfully, changed my life!  I make great choices now with regard to food, relationships, health and just my very moment to moment existence!

I do this, every moment of NOW, through MINDFULNESS.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying I'm perfect or my life is perfect, but I've definitely discovered that mindfulness is the key to being truly happy.  I've written many times that if you insert mindfulness in to your life, you will do the single most important thing you can to achieve your goals, because this one act will help all the other things you want to fall in to place.  It's as though your body already knows what to do, and right from wrong, you just have to make your brain get out of the way and mindfulness will do that for you!

At any rate, I am very pleased and proud to be where I am with my journey of weight loss and life improvement and I just wanted to share these thoughts with you.  Please, PLEASE, if you are reading this and have any thoughts, doubts or fears, that you can't lose weight, know that you CAN!  My best recommendation is to start with "Savor", and implement mindfulness. The rest will take care of itself in time.  It reminds me of the ant in that classic Johnny Hart "B.C." Comic Strip, when he kicks a snowflake off a hilltop and it rolls down, picking up mass, and obliterates all the caves and he just says "E=mc2".  Your good choices are the snowflake, and mindfulness is the hill.  You are the ant making the decision to kick the snowflake.



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