My Latest Obsession: The Diamond Cutter

In my yoga teacher training, we read a book called The Diamond Cutter. The book is on using Buddhist traditions in your business. The book talks about a “Circle Day.” One day during the work week where you don’t do any work. You stay home, meditate, eat light, healthy foods, light exercise, take a nap, help others, etc. You don’t do any work related to your business. No emails, no phone calls. It’s said to increase your productivity the rest of the week and may help you get insights on your business and life. Can you imagine ever doing this?

I thought it was easy for the author, Geshe Michael, to write about this. Sure, he has a stressful job in the Diamond District, but he doesn’t have a wife or kids. The funny thing is that I have not been able to stop thinking about this. I posted on Facebook and a few other message boards. I talked to my teacher about this, especially on how impossible it would be to incorporate this in my own life.  She suggested that I take one day while the girls are in school, say 9-3, as my Circle Day.

I thought that Thursdays would be a good day to do this. Today is Thursday. Did I do it? No. I’ve been trying to get an appointment with someone. The only day she could do it was today. I had to say yes. Yeah, yeah, mistake number one.  Geshe Michael says  you have to be firm on the Day. Clearly, I am not firm.

Can you imagine taking a Circle Day?

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6 thoughts on “My Latest Obsession: The Diamond Cutter

  1. I am currently in my Circle Day right now. I spent the first half of the day in silence, just had my first meal and am now trying to decide what and how I can do an activity with a master for the next part of the day.

    I have my own business and no kids, so I am able to do this. But I would say, is there anyone in the world who has kids who has done this or anything like it (take time away from them)? I think if you allow yourself to come up with a creative solution, you’ll find one.

  2. Derek, thank you for your comment. I never did take a Circle Day. My teacher had recommended taking whatever hours my daughters had off from school one day a week. I will admit that I am not such a fan of Geshe Michael after last Spring’s events. As a yogi, I try my best to forgive and not judge, but I’m having a hard time with it.

    I wish you the best of luck. Thank you so much for taking the time to read my blog post and for commenting.

    Judie

  3. Derek, I’m talking about the tragedy that happened last April: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/06/us/mysterious-yoga-retreat-ends-in-a-grisly-death.html?pagewanted=all

    I cannot help but think it’s a bit strange that he had a spiritual partnership with Lama Christie: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/15/garden/15buddhists.html?pagewanted=all. They could not be separated by 15 feet. I have heard things (maybe rumors, maybe truth, I don’t know) about their relationship that did not sit well with me.

    Again, I know/feel that I am being judgmental. I’m not enlightened. But the more I read about Geshe Michael, the more uncomfortable I became. I did reach out to my yoga teacher who was the one who had us read so much of his work during our training but she never returned my calls.

    I had heard from another yoga teacher that Lama Murat took off his robes after the April events. I did a quick google search and didn’t find anything.

    This is another article about Geshe Michael: http://www.nypost.com/pagesixmag/issues/20100211/Monk+y+Business+Controversial+NYC+guru+Michael+Roach

    It is the NY Post, so I take everything with a bit of salt. But whenever there’s smoke, there is fire.

    I was not aware of any of this prior to April. I never googled him or thought to question my teacher. I was very inspired by The Diamond Cutter and was in the middle of reading another book when I read about the death of Ian. I cannot finish the book.

    I would love to hear your thoughts on this Derek. I know some say “take the teachings, not the teacher” but I have a hard time swallowing that.

  4. Thank you. I think it’s a great reminder that you always check in with yourself and not completely rely on another person for instruction. Every human is subject to straying. In other words, think for yourself. Not ever being 15 feet from your partner, and for that matter Buddhism not ordaining women are things that don’t make sense to me.

    So as with all religions and such, there are some universal truths that are wonderful to help us get more connected to each other and become more aware of the patterns of our human mind, and there are some parts that really have nothing to do with it. Those things are surely created by some part of a human mind that is still anchored in its limits.

    As for the Circle Day, I like to try things. I think it could be something I like for the time being. As long as it helps me be a better person and better business person. If it does that, I’ll continue with it. Or perhaps not, and find something else to explore!!

    Important not to dismiss certain ideas because one man made some mistakes or went off course. The Diamond Cutter book has helped me be a better person. That’s most important. O, and to always learn from many people. It helps you see the universal truths and notice what feels right and wrong. I see this in business too – I’ll be learning from one business guru for a while, but then when I start learning from another and go back to the first one, I see deeper connections and different perspectives.

  5. Derek, thank you for your points and for the reminder to trust myself.

    I’m heading to India next weekend. Perhaps I will return with a different perspective on life in general. Namaste.

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