Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 07/19/2017

The Advantages of Discomfort

It seems to me that minor physical sufferings have a truly salutary effect on both body and mind. Over the past month I have been reducing my consumption of food and begun to observe Islamic style days on Mondays and Thursdays. The treaty of the days of the week I limit myself to two meals a day, skipping breakfast so as not to miss a dinner with my family. More than the physical benefits I have often found myself with more energy and a more reverential attitude. At times, during fasting, it almost seems like a large, silent space opens up inside where I can see things in greater contrast and finer details. 

Another thing I have taken up I’d the practice of cold showers. I had found in the past that I was inclined to waste lots of water while indulging in the pleasant sensations. When the water is frigid I have no such compulsion and I use only water is necessary to clean the body. 

It’s little things like this that help to invigorate my practice and, at the very least, leave me feeling clean and ready to give my best to it. Surely, these types of petit renunciations aren’t for everyone and may even seem silly but such are my predilections. 

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Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.