Podcast Series 2, Episode 9: Lying Still for an Hour

Cat laying down - Lying Still for an Hour Exercise

Lying Still for an Hour

An exercise in stillness, to grow will by gaining mastery over your automatic body movements through Lying Still for an Hour.

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Welcome to a series of podcasts on how to achieve a peaceful and mindful state, by using simple, short exercises. 

Each episode focuses upon a particular element of our being, and will reveal exercises designed to expand our awareness, and build up a gradual sense of inner calm and alertness.


Today, we’re going to talk about an exercise called “Lying Still for an Hour”. 

Another exercise I learned from that fellow in Texas. 

Master your lower centers

This exercise is designed to make you the master of your lower centers.

It is a tough exercise. However, what’s nice about it is, you only need to do it once every few weeks, and while you are doing it, you can do several other exercises: You can do your Objective Prayer; or do I AM’s; you can do the Threefold Attention Exercise; occupy yourself with many of the other exercises that are described in these podcasts.

Lying still for an hour

To properly do the exercise. Lay on your back with some support under you neck. I want you to start the exercise in a somewhat comfortable position.  Set an alarm clock or timer, so you will be notified when the hour has expired.

Then lie perfectly still.

Don’t move.

Your body will want to move.

Don’t let it.

Tell it, “No, no, I am in charge. You are not moving.”

The body may say, “Just a little adjustment, just a teeny bit.”

YouI say back, “No. no, no no, you are okay, it is not death, it is not going to kill you, it is not going to hurt you.”

The body may say, “But it itches.”

You say, “I don’t care, let it itch.” Then, don’t let the body scratch it.

Amazingly the itch will go away because it doesn’t get scratched.

You start to realize that you have some prowess over your body. The body starts to realize that you are serious about this exercise and that its participation is needed.

A story about the “I Am” exercise

I will tell you a funny story about the I AM exercise, which will demonstrate how the body will readily participate when it knows you are serious. 

A student in England, who – when they did their I AM exercise – would always reach an incredible place in themselves. Kind of like making a 10 when they did their I AM exercise – instead of the Where Am I on a Scale From 1 to 10 exercise. And then, one day, they called the guy in Texas and said, “I can’t get my I AM to 10. It lost the oomph. I can’t get it anymore. I don’t know what’s the matter, but I can’t get it anymore. What do I do?  What do I do?””

The guy in Texas said, “That is easy. Do it for 3 days.”

The student said, “What? You are kidding me.”

The Texan said, “Nope, you heard me correctly… do it for 3 days. Sit down with the ‘attitude’ that you are going to sit there for 3 days until you get it back to a 10.”

The student said, “Really?”

The Texan said, “Yep!. Do it with with that much tenacity, and with that much resolve. The resolve that you will sit there for 3 days. Then, do it constantly, steady, for 3 days until you get your I AM where you want it to be.”

The student said, “Well, OK.”  

Then student called back the next day and said, “Well, I did it for 12 hours… and then I did another session for 4 hours; and, I got my I AM back! 

It‘s back! 

I’ve got it! 

It’s back! 

And, it is even better than a 10, it is like I am at an 18.” Wow!

Then the student asked, “Now what do I do?”

Command your own body

The guy in Texas chuckled and said, “Now, it is easy. All you have to do is say to your body, I am going to do an I Am exercise, take your pick: get me to the 18 on the 8th breath; or, I will sit here for 12 hours… your choice.”

And guess what the body will do then? It will say, “Yikes, we don’t want to sit here for 12 hours, we better get there by the 8th breath.” It knows you have the tenacity to sit there for 12 hours, so it musters all the troops and yells, “Come on you guys, we have to get there by the 8th beath.”

And the body does. 

When that student now does their I Am exercise, they say, “It is amazing on the 8th breath I am at a 20. 

So, once you tell the body, “It is your choice. You get me there on 8 breaths or we will spend 12 hours sitting here. Take your pick.” 

When you do, the body will mobilize itself pretty quickly. That is, once you have told body what the requirements are; and, have proven to it that you are capable of sitting there for 12 hours in order to reach your aim… it will comply.

It will say, “We will get you there fast. We don’t want to have to sit here for 12 hours, we will do whatever it takes to bring you to the state you wish to attain.” 

Definiteness of purpose

Definiteness of purpose is very important.

The centers respect definiteness of purpose. 

It is a function of will, where the will is saying I am going to do this; and, since the machine knows that you will, it will give you all the force it has…. It knows that you are serious, because your prior actions have proven that. “I am going to sit here, motionless, for 12 hours if you do not get me to an 18 in 8 breaths.”

And, if the body knows that you will do that, I guarantee you, you are going to get to an 18 in 8 breaths. However, if it knows that you are bluffing…it won’t.

So, put that same tenacity into your Lying Still for an Hour exercise. If you do, your body will readily submit.

As was said, you can do several other exercises while you are lying still: You can do your Objective Prayer; or do I AM’s; you can do the Threefold Attention Exercise; occupy yourself with many of the other exercises that are described in these podcasts.


Okay, that’s the “Lying Still for an Hour” exercise.

Find the Master…. Is it your will, or the will of your body?


Thank you for listening.


Goodbye until next time.

Teachings based upon the works of R. A. Smith and G. I. Gurdjieff.

All material © 2020 THEDOG Publishing

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