Alcohol & Cigarettes: the body’s cry for moments of stillness.

by Sue Kira, Naturopath, Gold Coast, Australia. 

When I am with clients who are suffering from fatigue, we discuss the things that may have been draining their energy.

Some share with me how they like to have a glass of wine or two at the end of each day to wind down. It can make the difference between them saying to their kids, “Ok it’s bath time darlings”, rather than angrily blurting out “get in the bath you little monsters or I’ll…!”

All they want is some peace and quiet at the end of the day. How often have we used a glass of wine, a cigarette or even a cup of tea or coffee to sit quietly and unwind? That moment when you have a sip of the drink, or drag on the cigarette and you are totally focused on the moment; think about it…the long drag in and then exhale with relief, or the sip, swallow and the ‘ahhhh’ as you breathe out with ‘relief’ and relaxation.

I realised that what people often miss when they give up these things is the time to simply relax and just ‘be’, because our bodies really crave moments of stillness.

I remembered how I did the same thing. These moments are our search for stillness, but the substances we choose to use actually take us away from true stillness. The caffeine in tea and coffee, the sugar in alcohol, and the nicotine in cigarettes, all make us racy, running faster inside than our natural rhythm.

At other times I would stop on my way home from work and just sit by the river to relax before going home to the family. It was a moment just for me; a moment of stillness to reflect and just ‘be’.

I chat with my clients about how easy it is to create moments of stillness that don’t have to be harmful to the body. By creating a space for ourselves of only a few minutes to sit, close our eyes, breathe very gently and feel our body, feet and eyes relaxing and our hands resting on our thighs, we can feel an absolute presence with ourselves. And then, by gently opening our eyes, we can hold that feeling of gentleness and presence and continue to be with ourselves.

When we share a few minutes of doing this together in the clinic, they are often amazed at how lovely they can feel in a very short time without substances, tapes or any cost and how they can do this at any time, even with their eyes open.

We may also discuss how being calm and present with children can bring them to gentleness and calmness. Some have noticed that when they are ‘actively present’ with their kids by maintaining eye contact and really connecting ‘with’ them, they are lovely and calm and less aggressive. They have also noticed that when they are stressed and cranky, the kids are harder to be with, which makes things worse for all.

While there is no need to speak about esoteric ways and esoteric healing or the fact that I learnt how to access stillness and presence through Universal Medicine, Serge Benhayon and the many wonderful esoteric practitioners that I have had the pleasure to spend time with, it has been a deeply profound experience for me and for my clients to feel how easily we can feel this way any time we choose.

579 thoughts on “Alcohol & Cigarettes: the body’s cry for moments of stillness.

  1. “I realised that what people often miss when they give up these things is the time to simply relax and just ‘be’, because our bodies really crave moments of stillness.” I find Esoteric Yoga supports me with connecting with my stillness. Hard to believe that many years ago I thought the odd cigarette or drink performed the same!

  2. I am struck by the phrase a moment of stillness, in the way that we have mistaken a moment of numbness and relief from a tension in our bodies for a connection to our inner essence of stillness.

  3. I actually love moments of stillness, where you just can feel your breath and how gently it goes in and out and how our bodies don’t actually need to be tense and how our whole body actually has a pulse to it – it reminds me life is so simple and it’s a bit like it gives me a fresh platform for the rest of the day.

  4. After experiencing many times the positive calming and reconnecting effects of simply taking a few minutes to close my eyes and breathe gently, I am now wondering why we avoid taking this time for ourselves more often? Could it be because we are letting outside pressures to go constantly prove ourselves to others to influence how and when we make the space to connect with ourselves?

  5. When we live in a hectic way or have chaotic days, we can feel at the end of the day that we deserve a rest and with that often comes a reward. But what if there is no switch off time, and we choose to live a better daily rhythm, then we don’t need the chill out either. We can rest without checking out.

  6. When I allow myself to have moments of stillness the experience is so beautiful that there is no way that I would want alcohol or cigarettes to interrupt the experience. The more I experience the exquisiteness of stillness the less I want to put poisons like cigarettes and alcohol into my body.

  7. Experience a moment of stillness and connection, and you wonder ‘how on earth have I missed this?’ its so stunningly beautiful it seems inconceivable that you will ever forget. And yet you do – a lot! This incongruous behaviour illustrates so clear that there is a part of us that steers is towards fear and away from settlement, harmony and Love. The more we face up to this fact, the simpler it is to choose truth. Thank you Sue for this moment.

  8. Sue coming up to 5 years ago I first read your blog and its still so relevant today, for how we are with ourselves, the quality and the movements we made in stillness ripple out and can be felt by all. I know with my daughter how different she is based on how I am.

  9. If, at the end of the day we are needing a substance of some sort to take the edge off our day, one that will prime us for what lies ahead in the evening, it would make sense to take a long and very honest look at how we have been living and working. Unfortunately, many people do not want to take this honest look as what they see might be saying that the way they are living and working is not supporting them, thus the drink is the quickest way to dull how they are feeling. By not allowing ourselves to feel we know that we won’t be asked to change and life will unfold as it always has.

  10. It is very natural for us to want to experience moments of stillness and presence, but we seem to do everything to fight or avoid this beautiful offering. If we begin to embrace this quality in our lives it certainly is life changing in many ways.

  11. It can be an impulse for repose and it can be an impulse to numb ourselves and it can be both in my experience.

  12. ‘By creating a space for ourselves of only a few minutes to sit, close our eyes, breathe very gently and feel our body, feet and eyes relaxing and our hands resting on our thighs, we can feel an absolute presence with ourselves. And then, by gently opening our eyes, we can hold that feeling of gentleness and presence and continue to be with ourselves.’ I must admit this is how I chose to say goodbye to smoking cigarettes a long time ago. This practice though, can be done just in order to be with ourselves again, free of outside influences, whatever they may be. Practised daily or even more frequently this supports us to support ourselves on all sorts of levels and we get to appreciate ourselves and become more caring and loving. We become more solid in ourselves and more able to face life’s challenges.

  13. Stillness is built in to the flow of the universe. It is inherent to our rhythm, and when understood, connected with, experience, felt, and lived, it supports us in everything.

  14. Our lungs represent our connection with divinity – the ‘breath of God’ we breathe into our body and out again, which helps to establish the rhythm and flow of life. When we live out of sync to this, we create a divide and then sensing this loss we seek to fill this self-created ‘void’ with a ‘false breath’, be that via the cigarette smoke we inhale or the food, music, thoughts, beliefs and ideals we ingest and let govern our life and thus validate the separation from our true and divine selves we have thus chosen.

  15. It is about shifting the way we use things – and looking at how we can build up more stillness in our bodies without putting things into them. I love what is shared here about taking time to just connect – to be present – to give ourselves space rather than simply going to substances to numb us. It is an experiment that is there to be had with our own bodies – a way of empowering ourselves to surrender to the wisdom our bodies naturally hold.

  16. Having moments of stillness to just be and feel deeply are what keep me supported in the day from checking out and reacting to the workplace and the wider world.

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