Inner Peace w/ Dr. Reese
Aug. 23, 2020

Mastering Death w/ Don Miguel Ruiz Jr.

Mastering Death w/ Don Miguel Ruiz Jr.

In episode # 62, Dr. Reese talks with spiritual author, Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. They discuss the time his famous Dad told him as a young man that he has to master death in order to learn how to live. They also shine the light on conquering fear, the day he began to see life as-is, his relationship with his wife, his favorite meditation, his personal definition of his father's 4 Agreements, his apprenticeship to his Toltec grandmother and more. In addition, Don Miguel Jr breaks down in detail, the 5 levels of attachment. 

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Transcript

Dr. Reese (00:00:19):
Thank you for coming on to inner peace podcast.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:01:38):
Oh, thank you so much, Dr. Ruiz, how was everything with

Dr. Reese (00:01:40):
You? Everything is great. Your story is so fascinating to me. Uh, I read that when you were a younger teenager, uh, you were an apprentice for your dad and your grandmother who obviously are, you know, part of the toll tech wisdom tradition.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:01:59):
Mm-hmm <affirmative>

Dr. Reese (00:02:00):
What did you learn at that early age?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:02:04):
A lot of things. Um, you can say that my grandmother was always the spiritual, uh, figurehead of the family ever since I was all my life. She was always a master. So my father was her apprentice for many years. So I remember Dr. Me galleries. I remember apprentice Mees, and I know Dr. Uh, Don me galleries. Yeah, but, uh, mostly it was love. You know, you can say that I grew up in juxtapositions comp in contrast, I, I lived in San Diego, California, but I went to school in Tijuana, Mexico. I, uh, there was spirituality in my house house yet. I started, I studied the international baccalaureate and I studied very much academics and studied at university of California, San Diego. My father is a medical doctor. My uncle's a medical doctor. My aunt is a psychiatrist. My uncle's an oncologist. My mom is a dentist.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:03:08):
There's a lot of Western medicine doctors, my family. And then you have my grandmother. Who's a spiritual healer, a faith healer and my grandfather as well. So I grew up with two languages, English and Spanish. I learned how to navigate Tijuana. I learned how to navigate in San Diego. And to me, that was the, the jinx of it. You know, it's like the, the thing that allowed me to understand the world, you know, my father and my uncles would have patience and they would send them to my grandmother, Sarita for faith healing. And in turn, my grandmother would have some of her patients and she send them over to my uncles and my father so they can heal them. And not one of views, like it wasn't a narrow, uh, perception. It has to be this way. It has to be that way. Right? All instruments are in, are available to us.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:04:03):
If we are able to recognize what instruments we need. So at that point we don't discriminate based on the ideology or preferences. Humanity has created all these beautiful traditions that allows us to heal from the wounds that traditional love left in our heart, as well as to heal physically and mentally and emotionally. So for me, that is one of the essence I've learned from watching the interaction of my family, but mostly love, you know, we loved each other, you know, I paid attention to my grandmother because I loved her. I paid attention to my father because I loved him. They bombarded me with a lot of information and a lot of it is very useful. Some of it is not relevant to my life and some of them, I just don't remember. And there's things that I very, very much remember. So it's one of those things that I engaged in the apprenticeship because I like spending time with my family. So to me, that's the main lesson. When you

Dr. Reese (00:05:05):
Were old enough, did your dad tell you to go master death

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:05:10):
That becoming alive? Yes. Yeah. At the, at the very top of the pyramid of the sun, uh, I was 24 years old, 2020, exactly. 20 years ago, roughly around this time, uh, June or July. And, uh, it was at the apex of a journey. My father always held back during my apprenticeship when I was at school. So this was the first trip I had gone to when I was not a student. I graduated the year prior and he really pushed me. And I learned quite a bit. I, I was able to let go of a lot of filters. So when he said that to me, it's a moment where you realize that growing up, you had death as your biggest fear, but it turns out that the biggest fear is life.

Dr. Reese (00:05:58):
Right?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:05:58):
Right. So having a confidence in yourself to make a choice and to respect yourself to experience those consequences is nobody else's fault. I'm the one who said yes. So you can say that at that moment, I, my father really pushed and taught me for the first time in my life. You can say, and then came coming home. I had to reconstruct the whole thing, reconstruct the whole dream and little by little, I thought I was still up here, but little by little, I just came, crashing down, complete crash. And I started all over again. And that was intense. But looking back on it, very beautiful. I lost someone. I loved very much mm-hmm <affirmative> and my father had a massive heart attack and the bubble that I created for myself burst. And at that moment, that's when that lesson really came alive, it's it's, this is my life. How do I want to live it? How do I want to engage it? Right. So that was for me, the, what happened in that summer of 2000? Yeah, 2000.

Dr. Reese (00:07:05):
Yeah. Usually you hear of stories of a dad, like, I don't know, teaching their kid how to farm or, you know, get into the family carpentry business or whatever it is. Right. And he's telling you master death <laugh>

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:07:20):
But in a way it's the same thing, you know,

Dr. Reese (00:07:23):
Same, same concept, right?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:07:24):
Yeah. It's it's my, my grandmother practiced the tradition. My father practiced it. My grandmother's father practiced it. My great grandfather then IIA practiced it. We all rebelled against a tradition and eventually life found a way for us to learn.

Dr. Reese (00:07:40):
Yeah. And anyone on the spiritual path knows that, you know, death, you know, has to become your best friend. It's a, it's a part of life. And you know, that's probably the most important moment we'll ever have in our life is that last moment. And if we can master that, then we learn how to live.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:08:01):
Well, it's, it is the moment where you realize that we only go back to where all our ancestors go have gone before. Mm. And it's a moment where you realize that everything is precious. It's the thing that makes you accept that one day, I will not be animating this body that I won't be animating this mind. Mm-hmm <affirmative> thus what we have is this moment. So what am I gonna do? Am I gonna waste the rest of my life? Worried about a moment that's going to come, or, or am I going to use and enjoy this moment? It's, it's a moment where I accept not only my mortality, but the mortality of everyone in my life and also accept that every relationship ends. So if we already accept that every relationship ends, why are we gonna waste our time for a moment that's going to come. I'm going to enjoy when life is saying yes to me at this very moment. And that moment, not only do we conquer death, we come to peace with it, which is really what conquering is. We're conquering our fear and whatever projection we have of it. And that's what we master. We master our own fear of it.

Dr. Reese (00:09:10):
Right. Right. I love how you use the word animate because this is where the term animal comes from. Animal animate, animal animate, just a little gem there for the listeners. We are animated. Aren't we, if you go back 20 years ago, like you said, that's a little bit after your, your father's famous book came out the four agreements

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:09:34):
Three years after.

Dr. Reese (00:09:36):
Yeah. That book really took off in the spiritual community. When did you realize like, oh, my dad is, you know, a player in this game. So to speak.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:09:50):
When I first the book in 1997, I read two chapters and I put the book down. It was my dad telling me what to do over again. And I didn't pick it up again. I was in 1997, I was 21 years old and I didn't pick it up again until I was 27, 28 years old.

Dr. Reese (00:10:07):
Ah,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:10:08):
So at that moment, it's basically, that's when I started really applying it in my life. It's when I really started engaging it. So I think it was more 27. So at that moment, my father was, I don't know, it's like, it never really hit me that he was a player in all this until, until his heart attack, really? Because at that moment he was in the, his, he had already been with Oprah and, uh, in the form that they talked about him in his book, uh, Ellen and my Oprah talked about him. Mm-hmm <affirmative>, but my father never really held himself in that way. Like even to this very day, you know, we don't really act like we like that. It's just, we, we give, we, we have an opportunity to work, you know, when I've, when I released a book and it hits number one, whatever, I just see it as my opportunity to continue to work.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:11:04):
It's some something my father always approached it, you know, it's, it's one of those things that we know that people project onto us, whatever they want to project and it's our temptation to believe it. Mm. So for us, we're just living our life. We have an opportunity to share our tradition with other people and using control folly. We know the projection that people project of us is not the truth. And if I believe it, then I'm gonna use that image to domesticate myself in it. And I was, you can say that a problem I had when I was younger, I really believed in those images, you can say that I used the four agreements as the four conditions. And I used it to domesticate myself, pretending to be something I am not. So at that moment I learned, and I became aware that Dommy gal's Jr doesn't exist.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:11:58):
I exist my father in the same way, my brother in the same way. Right. So for us, it's, it's fun to play in that world. And it's fun to see the response, you know, when we engage, but every single moment is just an opportunity, an opportunity to share an opportunity to experience. So, yeah, that's, that's how we see it for us. You know, we, we know we are a form of celebrity, but a celebrity that we are only celebrities when we hit a stage, as soon as we leave that stage, we're no longer celebrities. Right? In fact, the book is more popular than us and that's the way we want it. The book always has to be more popular than us.

Dr. Reese (00:12:45):
Right? The name for agreements is a very popular title. Mm-hmm <affirmative>

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:12:51):
Yeah.

Dr. Reese (00:12:53):
When was the first time in your life when you directly experienced the fact that you are not your mind, you are not your body, you are not your story. You're something else. Did you have an experience

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:13:09):
June, 2000, June, July, 2000. That's uh, that same, that same journey. It's a moment where you can say, if I'm gonna use spiritual terms, I'm gonna use them. Um, my, I shifted my assemblage point and all of a sudden, every filter went away for a brief moment in time. And I saw life as is. And what came the crashing down of that image came not at that moment, but months, months later, when I came back, when I came back home and I went to live in Berkeley again, and, and little by little, I felt everything fall apart in the sense that that image of who I thought I was doesn't exist. And that's when I realized, you know, I had that moment where that image of my myself was just an Hmm. So, but it started with that moment. You know, it, it, it's interesting to, to see is that you reach a certain moment, a moment of clarity, a moment of whatever you experience life as is, and it's beautiful.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:14:18):
And then you think you're there yet. You think that you're automatic, that you don't have to do any more work, but it's not true. Life will always throw a curve. Oh, life will go, always go up in cycles. And that's where you realize that you're always changing. As soon as you define yourself with a, an identity or a symbol or a name, that name no longer represents you because it's no longer representing the truth. So when you realize that, that I don't need to find myself through an identity with a definition, I can know myself through the experience of being me. I'm always changing. I'm always shifting. I'm always living life. And that's what makes me change. You know, right now I'm 44 years old and a few months I'll be 45 years old. Uh, right now we're going through all this thing. That's happening in the world.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:15:11):
And at AF on the other side, I'll be a different person because I've ex I will experience life in a totally different way. I know that because I'm already a different person from where I was at the beginning of this year. Hmm. And so on and so forth. So I'm always changing. So if I tried to hold on to an image of who I was or what it is, well, that's when suffering happens, because I'm holding onto what is known when I'm holding onto the past. In the past. There's no longer the truth because life no longer lives in the past. Right. You know, makes it a moment.

Dr. Reese (00:15:44):
Right. Were you doing a lot of meditation back then or?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:15:49):
No, my meditation is running. Um, I run marathons and half marathons and

Dr. Reese (00:15:55):
Oh, wow.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:15:56):
Around a mile three or mile four. I enjoy the feeling when my mind surrenders and all that exists. This my body, my <affirmative> my body, my, my breath, my, the course, the, the cars of course. Cause you have to pay attention to the cars.

Dr. Reese (00:16:12):
Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:16:13):
But it is the moment where I stop thinking of what I'm doing and I know what I'm doing. Some people might call it the runners high. Some people call it being present or the zone. But for me, that's my favorite meditation, which is to run

Dr. Reese (00:16:29):
Very cool.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:16:30):
Now, nowadays I've added kickboxing to that. I enjoy, I enjoy the feeling of my movement, of my body,

Dr. Reese (00:16:36):
Right? At the end of the day, it comes down. It comes down to the centering the mind anyway. So meditation could be anything

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:16:43):
It's being present.

Dr. Reese (00:16:45):
Meditation could be drinking tea like in Zen tradition, right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:16:49):
And enjoying every flavor, all the aroma and being present for that. Whoa,

Dr. Reese (00:16:54):
There was once, uh, <laugh>, I'm going back to, uh, a discourse I heard from OSHA one time, and this is in the seventies and ACI or a, someone was asking a question and they're like, I think I'm sitting because I smoke cigarettes and this, that, and the other. And he says, well, you're not. He says, well, you're hurting your body, but just be present. If you're gonna do it, be present, make a corner in your room and have a little smoking shrine if you want. <laugh>. Yeah. As long as you be present doing your bad quote, unquote thing, just be present.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:17:38):
And if adopt that to everything in life, then we can meditate. When we're working. We can meditate when we're, uh, swimming, when we're creating art. When we're singing, when we're in the shower, when we are holding our Beloved's hand, we, when we are even watching TV, you know, when we're completely in this very moment where our mind is not in the past or in using our memory, right? Or we're not in the future using our imagination, we are at this press a moment where silence is perceiving the function in our tradition, the function of the mind is to dream, to dream is to perceive and to project. So I perceive 360 degrees around me with my eyes, with my ears, with every single nerve ending that surrounds my body. But at the same time, as you're hearing me, I'm projecting right now, I'm feeling my diaphragm with air, letting the air go through my traia through the vocal chords in my throat to make through the muscles in my mouth to make sounds in English.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:18:43):
I am projecting what I'm perceiving in my mind, but at the same time that which I perceive in my mind is also a projection. Every single thought I have. So let's imagine you're reading a book. Each paragraph represents a thought, and of course, there's chapters representing a different stage. You may be in your own story, but each paragraph represents a thought you have now at the end of a thought or end of a paragraph, there's a period. Heather Marman, your friend uses that when you have a thought and you don't, you're not liking it. Be able to put a period at the end to end the thought and redirect your attention. That's beautiful. That's nice. Mm. So here's the thing. There's a space in the paragraph between that last period and the first capital letter that first capital represents the beginning of the next thought.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:19:43):
So at that period, you can either continue to that next paragraph, continue to the chapter, or you can just shift and start a whole new chapter. But here's the thing. This base between the thoughts, this actual perception, it's called silence. When I'm no longer projecting onto the world. My narration, my explanation, my knowledge, I am perceiving. I am perceiving the world around me in order to perceive it requires me not to project mm-hmm <affirmative>. So I can be in the middle of Manhattan. I can be in the middle of Mexico city or Tokyo or any loud boisterous capital, huge city. And there will be silence because you learn to elongate that space between thoughts and in that silence one, you don't get in the way of yourself, but you get to listen and hear what's around you. You can call this awareness, you're aware of your environment.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:20:57):
And as you are aware of your environment, you know how to engage that environment. Well, you can also do that within yourself. All of a sudden stop the story of who you are and get to experience what it feels like to be in your body without the need to describe it without the need to narrate it without the need to encapsulate it in a Def in a symbol with a definition, a concept you just are, and that silence you can be in anything. So kind of like OSHA was describing. You would take that corner of that cigarette and you'd be present, which means enjoy the experience of that, which you're perceiving without a judgment coming in to narrate or describe it. Yeah. And that, because if you do that, you're no longer really present. You're paying attention to your mind. And when that happens, well, then you're completing your mind. You're completely in your own creation.

Dr. Reese (00:22:05):
Mm well put isn't it interesting or fun even how the basics of spirituality and liberation is really the same and all this different traditions, you know, there might be, there might be some differences, but the, the, the core basics are the same thing all around

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:22:33):
Mm-hmm <affirmative>

Dr. Reese (00:22:33):
Whether it's teachings from Jesus or Buddha or Lazu, or your father OSHA, it's like the basics. The core basics are the, are the same. Tell me about the toll tech tradition, because some people may not be familiar with it. It's an ancient south American tradition. Mexican tradition been around, you know, centuries ago, right? Mm-hmm <affirmative> can you explain more to the listeners? What the toll tech tradition is?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:23:06):
The word toll tech is a natal word. That means artists in English, in fact, to tech or to Spanish or in English. It's just now adaptation of the word artist. If I translate the phrase, the total art of transformation into 100% English, it means the artist path of transformation. I am an artist and the canvas for my work of art is my life and the instruments I'm going to use to create that work of art. It's gonna be my body. It's gonna be my mind. It's gonna be my will. My intent. I can create the most perfect nightmare. I can create the most perfect harmonious dream. That's what, when I say I'm a tech, I'm actually saying I'm an artist. Mm. As the civilization, it ceases to exist over 500 years ago, either with expansion of the AEC empire or the Spanish empire, which means at that moment, it became an oral tradition.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:24:08):
Now people in Mexico and south, Southeast United States, the desert, uh, many traditions there have Totex, which means it was not just a civilization, but every community in meso America had Totex as well as all around the world. When, when we adapt and translate the word, every single community has artists. And that's what the oral tradition comes from in our tradition. It's like, there are people in Mexico that practice it exactly as it was 500 years ago, because it was taught from generation to generation. Then there's people like my family that adapts it with each generation. If I quote my grandmother, if you practice a total tradition, the way I or your father do, you're killing the tradition you put into practice. All that you've learned and life becomes your teacher with the consequences of the choices you make and from learning from those consequences, you will use your own words to describe 'em that's oh, she says that's how I'll know if you describe verbatim the four agreements, for example, then I'll know you haven't really applied it.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:25:23):
You've done a good job reading the book, but you haven't really applied it. So you start applying it. And for example, after some time I've learned that being Impec with the word, the word is an empty symbol, whose definition is subject to agreement. Every word we use in our vocabulary is an empty symbol whose definition is subject to agreement. But a word has a meaning because we define it with our intent. So be impeccable with your intent, because it's your intent. It gives power to the word, the same energy you use to move your legs, to move your arms is the same energy we use to create a thought. And at the root of every belief we have in our belief system, there is a, yes, it gives a power. That's why we know it's intent or will. So be impeccable with your intent. And I remember saying this to my father and I says, good.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:26:14):
That's exactly what I meant. And he go, but since you changed it, then we change it one more time, be impeccable with yourself, because it is you who's giving power to your word. Another example would be don't believe your assumptions, because I realize that an assumption is a pro a missing piece of information or a projection of a story that I project onto life. For example, my favorite instrument that I like to use to describe what the, uh, make an assumption is, is the gestalt principle of closure. The gestalt principle of closure says, if you draw a circle and you don't close it, the mine has capacity to project that missing part. If you draw two sides of a triangle, but you don't draw that third line, the mind has capacity to project that, that third line, they use it in abstract thought, a thought in psychology and many other things.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:27:09):
And, and literature is called reading between the lines that missing part. The reason why we project onto it is that the mind needs to know when we don't have all the information, we do our best to fill in the missing gap. So what we do there is that we want to see the world in some way, we will project all a certain what if onto what we know. And it makes us think that we know the hope, but it's just our story. So don't make assumptions basically means don't project your story onto the world when you don't have the full information, applying that in my life. Well, then let me adapt. It don't believe your assumption because it's easy to note in order to use an assumption with discipline is to always know that it's my creation. I created it when I forget that I created it is because I want to believe it.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:28:09):
So I believe it right. And what's dangerous about that is that I take action. Want I take action. There's consequences that may reflect life, or may not. And you know, you can ask yourself how many of my emotional wounds were created because I made an assumption out of a situation. So because of that, I changed it to don't believe your assumption. Don't take things personal. For example, for me, it took me a long time to realize that I do take things personal. So I adapted it to realize that to not take things personal is to not assume responsibility for someone else's will that I am only responsible to the tips of my fingers. And now that it's what not taking things personal is I don't assume responsibility for someone else's will, nor someone else's perception. I am only responsible for my own. I'm responsible for my actions.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:29:08):
I'm responsible for how I perceive life. Now, everything I just shared is me applying what I learned from my father and my grandmother, and applied it in a way that resonates with me, right? Otherwise I could have just repeated everything verbatim like a parakeet, but it doesn't mean that I actually know what I'm talking about. Right? I very much a good reader, but once you actually apply it, then all of a sudden, the lessons really begin to unfold because they stop being conceptual and they start being practical. And that's the whole point of the book, the practical guide to your own personal freedom,

Dr. Reese (00:29:47):
Right? It sure is nice and simplified one of your famous books, the five levels of attachment. Hmm we're we're we're so attached to so many things, aren't we? And so your, your book really breaks this down. Can you describe briefly what the five levels are?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:30:08):
My grandmother do my apprenticeship with her. Ask me a question. Do you control knowledge or this knowledge control do that's something my grandmother used to say over and over again, and she would adapt it in different ways. She would say, are you drinking the bottle or is a bottle drinking you or stuff like that? Right. When I was 14 years old, I had no idea what that meant. It just went over my head. So as I got older, it began to understand these concepts. And I was able to answer the question, as I realize in different stages of my awareness or different levels of my own attachment, an attachment is investing of yourself emotionally or energetically or intellectually onto something. That's not a part of you, but you make it a part of you through that emotional investment. Mm that's. What an attachment is. Now, mind you, an attachment is healthy.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:31:01):
It's a healthy thing. We attach ourselves. Or we could say we engage a moment or someone of something. What makes it unhealthy is that when the time comes to let go, we can't because we've, we've, I've attached ourselves so much to it in a sense of who we are that we are afraid to let it go. So with that, let's imagine a Lotus flower called awareness. Let's imagine this flower completely open level one, the authentic self. The answer to my grandmother's question is I am aware that I am alive regardless of what knowledge I have or what I think I am aware that I am this authentic self, and I'm only using the word authentic self only to describe to someone, this awareness of being alive. I am the force that animates this body, that animates this mind. And I'm aware of that. My body, my mind is my creation without me, this body does not exist.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:32:14):
So for as long as I am in this body, this body, this mind is animated level two preference. Let's imagine a flower that engages a moment closing just briefly. And when the moment is over, it opens up again. So open and close, open, and close a pulsating flower, engaging with moments in New York. It might pulse it really fast and up in here in the mountains, it might go a little slow. So the answer to my grandmother's question is I am aware of my authentic self, and I will use knowledge as an instrument by which I navigate the world. It is an instrument that allows me to inform my choices, but I'm the one making a choice. So at this very moment, I'm the youngest I will ever be. I'm the sum of every decision that I've ever made, but at the same time, I'm the youngest I will ever be.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:33:14):
I have my whole life to live. I'm the infinite possibility. And because I can go in any direction in life, whichever path I prefer that I say yes to that is my preference. That's why this level's preference. And when the moment is over, I'm able to disengage level three. Imagine the flower engaging a moment closing ever so briefly. But when the moment is over, it can't open up. It stays there. The answer to my grandmother's question is knowledge and I are one, one of the best ways to attach ourselves to something is to identify ourselves with it.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:33:59):
Because in life, everything flows, everything moves, you know, nothing in life stays, but the only way it can stay is if we make it a part of us. And the easiest way to do that is to identify ourselves with it. Or we can say, we give ourselves an identity and we give ourselves a definition of that identity. Right? We begin to see ourselves as a word that's and we Impec with the word. Right? Right. So knowledge and I are one, the one condition that the dream of the planet has society, community is that I need to know who you are in order for me to know who you are. That allows me to relate to you. I know where you're coming from. It's when, remember where we said the mind needs to know. So an identity is a beautiful thing. From this point of view, it's a be, it's a thing that allows me to honor my ancestors to honor my preferences, to honor my culture, to honor the things in my life that bring me joy, right?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:35:01):
And it allows me to break the eyes, finding other people who relate to the same likes. You know, we enjoy this. We enjoy that. We like this kind of music. We like the pone. The cur myths. If I say that, some people who hear that will say, yes, I like them too. Some people who are like, well, who are they? Well, you know, that's, our entities will be a little different there, but that's the beauty of an identity. It's it can be a bridge that allows us to create relationships. Now, mind you up to Le this point level one, level two and level three. I'm experiencing love as is. I can respect life as anyone. If I'm a vegan, I can sit down next to someone who's, uh, Atkins, and we can enjoy a dinner together, right? If I'm a tall tech, I can sit next to a Deepak Chopra and then we can enjoy each other's company.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:35:57):
Right? If you know, Christian, you can sit down with someone who's Muslim or Buddhist, and you'll enjoy each other's company, right? It's not an instrument of division. It's just an instrument to identify our relationship. Going back to what you were saying before, you know, all these beautiful traditions, the teachings of Jesus, bud. They all have this common, common thread. Because when we put it into language, we are putting into language, our communion with the divinity, and we will use the words that surround our environment to give it such a such experience. For example, if you go to yoga and yeah, at first you start cranking your neck to look at what the teacher's doing. You're doing the moves, where you are cutting your neck, because you want to see what the teacher's doing. But after some time you don't crank your neck to look up because you already know what certain sounds mean, or, or certain words mean that you will do it downward dog, uh, uh, sun warrior, you know, that kind of thing.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:37:01):
Yeah. Uh it's then you, you start focusing on the movement and then one point you stop thinking about it and you use your breath. And all of a sudden, out of nowhere, your breath allows you to have an experience similar to what you have in breath work, but it's coming with movements and you have a communion with the divine, with divinity, and you, when you come out of it, you're gonna use the words of yoga to describe it, right? So at that point, identity level three, it's our attachment to the need to know the need, to identify the mind needs to know that's the whole purpose of knowledge, knowledge, and I are one level four internalization. Hmm. Once we have an identity, it's actually a slippery slope. Uh, we can begin to use it as an instrument or a model by which I domesticate myself.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:38:00):
For example, in my case, don't mean outreach Jr. In order to be worthy of love, I have to live up to this image of do Miguel rich, Jr. If I need to know for agreements, take things personal. Don't make assumptions, always do your best. I forgot one. Which one is it? Oh no. And I begin to diet type judgment, punishing myself for not knowing this idea, this concept, how can I call myself a to if I don't know this one agreement in my father's book, right? That's supposed to be ancient and all that kind of thing. And all of a sudden the judgment comes in. And at that moment, the telltale signed that I've corrupted. The four agreements by using it to domesticate myself is judging myself or taking things personal, judging myself, or making an assumption, judging myself for the rest of it. At that moment, I've corrupted the four agreements and turned it into the four conditions of our personal freedom.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:38:55):
Mm. At that moment, I use these teachings to domesticate myself to this image of Dom Miguel Ru Jr. It is where domestication a system of reward and punishment by which we model individual comes in, which means is the way we begin to love ourselves conditionally. At this point, a vegan won't share a plate or a table with an Atkins, right? We're gonna be judging each other. We're uh, and religion as well. We are gonna be creating a division because the answer to my grandmother's question here is that knowledge gives me the rules by which I love myself and others. Mm. So at that moment, this is where I begin to love myself conditionally. And that's when everything becomes corrupted, level five fanaticism. Hmm. The answer to my grandma's question is knowledge has complete and total control of who I am. It's the moment where I don't see myself as the authentic self.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:39:59):
I actually see myself doing an identity. I am the person of vacation of an idea. That's more important than my life. And if it's more important than my life, it's definitely more important than yours. It is the moment where I no longer see your humanity, just because I'm not even even able to see my own humanity. So the answer to my grandma's question is knowledge and I, sorry. Knowledge has complete control of me. So at level four, level five, imagine that Lotus flower called awareness closing, ever so tightly to the point where all the pedals become filters, that distort all my perception. And I don't see life as is. I only see what I want to see.

Dr. Reese (00:40:45):
Hmm. Well put, so you have children. When do you start passing this stuff down to them? At what age?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:40:54):
Whenever they're interested, if they're ever interested.

Dr. Reese (00:40:57):
Yeah. Well you just hand them a book. I mean, you got between you, your brother, your dad, you, you could hand them a library.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:41:05):
Well, we had them books and with sign, you know, we've, we've signed them and give it to them like more of like a, like a little present to them, like, all right, this is my bookish. I, I give it to you kinda like that's the present we've given them. But what we understand is what more matters most is that one day, if they ever do decide they're gonna open it.

Dr. Reese (00:41:25):
Right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:41:26):
And if they open it, they might answer questions. And at that point we'll answer them. So in this very, yes, we've given them books, but it was more as a gift kinda saying, this is, uh, I wrote this book, I've signed it for you. Here it is. Yeah. And it'll become her lesson and his lesson when they decide to actually read it. Cause that's what I did. Right. My dad gave me his book. I opened, I read it for two chapters <laugh> and it was my dad telling me what to do.

Dr. Reese (00:42:03):
I don't, I don't wanna listen to him right now. <laugh>

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:42:06):
Yeah, because you know, growing up, it's a filter, you know, when people ask me, what's it like to grow up with my father, with my grandmother, even with my father, you know, it's he was my, he was, he was there for me. He enjoyed, you know, we had a lot of fun. He was my, uh, he was my disciplinarian. He gave me advice. He got me out of trouble. He got me into trouble. He did all these great things and it was phenomenal, you know? So for me, you know, it was it's normal. It's when, when, when, when you asked me, like, when did he hit me that he was a, a big hitter or whatever? Um, it's kind of hard for me to say, yes, I recognize that he is popular or that kind of thing. Uh, but for us, when we are around, man, we just talk, you know, we, we mostly talk sports, we talk, right. Uh, he, we talk movies. We talk about the family, we talk about all these things. We rarely talk about teachings. You know, it's, it's, it's all about our, our relationship with what coming, but what common, common ground we have and we share that common ground.

Dr. Reese (00:43:11):
Right? Right. So,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:43:12):
You know, for my kids, you know, they, my wife grew, uh, she grew up Mormon. I grew up Catholic. I grew up, you know, with a total tradition. That's part of the position that I grew up Catholic. I went, I had my first communion and my CISM and all that kind of good stuff. My wife grew up Mormon. So in our house, the fusion of those three traditions are pretty much intertwined. Wow. When we go through Utah, we, we pray, we cross our arms and we do our prayer. We close our eyes and we do the prayer. We, we, we let Howard, uh, lead us in the prayer or whichever elder is there at the table at my home, we do a, you know, uh, we cross our head in our chest. We do the sign of the cross and we say, thank you God. And we start eating, you know? And then those kind of things, you know, I, I, I just, I mentioned the superficial stuff, but my wife and I kept what we resonates with us. And we let go of a lot of stuff that doesn't okay. And my wife and I, the way we see it is that we created a whole new culture.

Dr. Reese (00:44:20):
Right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:44:20):
When, when will they choose the religion? When will they choose the total tradition that is up to them. Yeah. And it's completely their choice.

Dr. Reese (00:44:28):
Sure, sure. So you have another book, the seven secrets to a healthy, happy relationship. So it sounds like you got this thing worked out. I mean, <laugh>, there's a lot of traditions there. You're, you're, you're mixing in and, and, and making it, making it work, making it happen. What would be another tip for someone? I mean, you got seven of them here.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:44:51):
Whenever a couple comes up to me, asks me for advice. I always ask the same question. Do you guys wanna stay together? If they both say yes, the rest is easy because that, yes. Is the motivator by which we cross thresholds. When both of them say, no, that's also easy because they're both saying their truth. The relationship is gone. Its course it's difficult when one says yes. And the other one says, no, at that moment, you're trying to convince someone else to change their yes. And two and no, but that's the thing. Every relationship exists for as long as two people say yes to that relationship, as soon as one changes that yes. And two, a no, that relationship ceases to exist, which means all relationship exists for as long as two people say yes to one another with that free will, you know, my wife, she is, my wife is not my best friend. She's my wife. And what I mean by that is that at a 7.5 billion people living life in this planet at this very moment, maybe closer to 8 billion.

Dr. Reese (00:45:58):
Mm

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:45:59):
She's. The one who's saying yes. And our yes. Has taken us to such a deep level of intimacy with one another that we've created so much together. You know, she, we I've completely opened up to her and she's opened up to me. So that's what I mean by my wife. It's not a power struggle or anything like that. It's just an honor, you know, uh, a word that describes this mutual respect for one another. Hmm. But my wife is only with me because she wants to be with me at any given moment. She can change that. Yes. To a no, my wedding ring only means something for as long as we both say I do. But at any given moment, she can change that. Yes. And to a no, if I do something stupid or if she goes in different ways in life, she's completely free to do anything she wants.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:46:51):
She is free to say yes to the things she wants. She wants to say yes to and no to the things she wants to say no. To, to respect hers, to respect her. No, just as much as her. Yes. Because her no is just as powerful as her. Yes. Hmm. And that's true because I can't give what I do not have in order to give that respect to her. It starts with myself respecting my own. No, just as much as my own. Yes. Right. When the expression goes to love someone, set them free, that means let them be in their own free will. And with that freedom, knowing that they can go in any direction, she wants that she is only here because she wants to be. That's great because I want to be with her too. We're both saying yes at the same time.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:47:38):
And that's what makes that relationship great. Yes. Hurdles will come, you know, a relationship that doesn't have that. Yes. So strong, you know, when the first hurdle comes, you'll break up. So you're dating. It's a relationship that you, you had a mutual attraction, but the, yes, wasn't strong enough to survive those first hurdles. If the yes is strong enough, you're able to survive a few other hurdles and you're in a long committed relationship, but eventually you're gonna get that one hurdle that changes that. Yes. And two and no, my wife and I have been together for 16 years and we've gone through a lot. We've learned how to argue with one another. We've learned to go through all those hurdles. For example, my grandfather used to say, if you're about, if you're about to put your foot in your mouth button, your lip, if you already put your foot in your mouth button, your lip even harder.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:48:39):
<laugh>. So when I was younger, even when my relationship with my wife in our early years, we will get through arguments and ask couples know, you know, eventually you get to know each other so well that you know, which points to touch that will create some pain, but more importantly win you the argument. So we always go down to that place. So one point I'm hearing myself, I'm about to say that stupid thing and something stupid is basically something that's gonna hurt her. I don't have the discipline to stop myself. So what I did, I walked away when she first start, when I first started doing that, she would follow me and boom. There was the argument, right? One day I, we said, honey, love I'm walking away because I'm about to say something stupid. And I don't wanna say it. And basically I don't wanna hurt you.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:49:30):
She says, well, to me, when you walk away, it sounds like you're not taking me. You're not taking me seriously that you're not, you're taking me for granted. And I said, no, honey, that's not what I'm doing. I'm I'm going away because I don't wanna say something stupid. That's gonna make things worse. And I can't stop myself from saying it. So I'm walking away. She says, I hear you, you and I understand, so let's make this promise walk away. But once you diffuse come back and reengage the conversation. Hmm. And it worked when we came back, what happened is that just as I was about to explode emotionally, I was able to calm down. And what happens when you calm down your defenses go down and part of defense is that you don't listen when you're defending yourself, you stop listening. So when the emotion comes down, your defenses come down and all of a sudden the channel of communication is once again, open. So after 16 years of being together, we're able to talk about finances. We're talking about. We're able to talk about raising children, um, holidays and all these things and realize that it has nothing to do with our relationship. When we disagree in finances, it has nothing to do with us.

Dr. Reese (00:50:53):
Hmm.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:50:54):
So little by little, we were able to talk apples to apples, oranges, to oranges. And we weren't crossing the hairs because at one point that's what we were doing. We thought that if we disagreed financially that you don't respect me and this, and it just got convoluted, we cleaned the channels of communication. And what allowed us to clean those channels is that mutual love for one another to, you know what? This is worth, the effort, this relationship is worth the effort. So it's one of those things that in my life, I've had the opportunity to heal. A lot of those wounds that would trigger me to react. You know, she gave, when I wrote this book, the five, uh, the seven secrets to happy, healthy relationships, uh, I just finished healing my relationship with my first love, my high school sweetheart. And my wife gave me such a benefit of the doubt and gave me a lot of respect that allowed me to heal my relationship with my ex. And when she and I healed each other's wounds, the person who benefited was not just she and I, but my wife and her husband, you know, all of a sudden that all wound is no longer there to faster and contaminate my present because that wound was healed. So it's one of those things that when couples ask me about advice, once again, I say, do you guys wanna stay together? If they both say, yes, the rest is easy because that motivator's there to get you through some of the hardest stuff.

Dr. Reese (00:52:22):
And what about if someone just wants to be single? <laugh>

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:52:26):
That's also true.

Dr. Reese (00:52:27):
Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:52:27):
That's the way it goes. You know, that's it, it's one of those things that you learn. It's like, don't get a, don't get a cat. If you want a dog, don't get a dog. If you want a cat, <laugh> be honest with what you want. Yeah. And always give the person no choice. Most of the time, if you say it from the point, I just wanna be single. And if you say it out front, you know, if the people who don't want to be single will say goodbye, but people who like, you know what, I want to be single too. And you know, let's just have fun. That's how you do it. You know, you like a player lies.

Dr. Reese (00:53:01):
Right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:53:01):
And someone who's honest,

Dr. Reese (00:53:03):
Honesty. Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:53:04):
Always comes true and says, this is what I want. This is what I want to experience. If you're okay with it, let's continue. If you're not okay with it. Thank you so much. We respect that person's truth, which is their no.

Dr. Reese (00:53:18):
Right, right. And so, you know, when we come to this realization that we're not our mind and we're not our body, we're not our story. We're not our identifications. Mm-hmm <affirmative> then, you know, we realize that we're in this animated material world and we're on this journey and you are on this journey with another person mm-hmm <affirmative> and some little people, it's an interesting dynamic. You know, they say a lot of masters say, stay in the marketplace, don't go to the Himalaya mountains. Right. Mm-hmm <affirmative>, don't, don't go to a monastery, stay in the marketplace. Mm-hmm <affirmative> when you're married with kids, that's another layer on top of staying in the marketplace.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:54:08):
Yeah. Because it's your reality. It's your present? You know, if you're going to the Himalayas, you're trying to adapt someone else's path, find your own path, find, stay in the marketplace, stay in your family. You know, CTA left his wife and kid. And he knew he did it knowing that his wife and child will be okay. Why? Because CTA was at the advocating, releasing, letting go of his crown, his claim. Hm he's claimed the crown mm-hmm <affirmative> he was a prince

Dr. Reese (00:54:42):
That's right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:54:43):
He lets go of that crown. The next in line is his son. Yeah. So when <inaudible> leaves, his wife and son is because he knew that he was there will be protected, but then you re you know, someone who like car, car act and, and the beat generation that wanted to apply that. Well, they left their wife and son, but they weren't being taken care of. You know, they, they, they made a decision that was true for someone else's life, but it wasn't true for their own.

Dr. Reese (00:55:17):
Right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:55:18):
So it's, it's always, you have to be present. What is your desire? What is your choice for me? I was working in the film industry for 10 years and I let it go because I didn't wanna be the kind of father that was not there because when you're in the film industry, every job is your last job. So you're always saying yes to every job, which means I wasn't gonna be around. And I want to be a man. Who's who's a father and a husband that's around mm-hmm <affirmative>. So for me, this is the joy right now, coronavirus is happening and we're not working as much as we were before, but I'm really busy. And that's because I've got two kids and I'm doing my very best to helping them. You know, it's like, they're stuck in the house, whatever we go out here and there. But you know, they're 15 and 13, which are, you know, it's like, you

Dr. Reese (00:56:11):
Got teenagers.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:56:12):
They're teenagers, which means they were gonna be in the room anyways. You know's getting them outta the house. Yes. Now I understand all those peoples that I'm just trying to get 'em outta the house. <laugh> and now I totally understand, right? Like totally other side of that, that equation, you know? Right. It's like, for example, it's like here, here's a good one. It's like Peter, Pam, when I was a kid, Peter, Pam was a hero.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:56:39):
He took Wendy and the boys to Neverland and brought 'em back and it showed 'em all this time. I wanna be a lost boy. I want to be a lost boy too. And you grow up with that. And then you hit the teenage years and you stop believing in various, you stop believing in Peter pan. Then you fall in love. You have kids and you can't wait to introduce them to Peter pan. And all of a sudden, your perception of Peter pan changes again, because first it was a hero. Then you're like, eh, he's lame. Then, Hey, let me introduce you. Then you watch him. And then you're realize, wait a minute, Peter pan is a villain. He's going to take my kids away. Yes. Close that window because I don't want them to take em away. He's gonna kick on my kids, get him mean, get em poke. And all of a sudden you understand captain the hook and all of a sudden you can relate. <laugh>

Dr. Reese (00:57:43):
Right. Right.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:57:44):
And that's because now you're seeing it from the point of view of a parent, you can follow and learn from someone else's path, but it's not your path. It's theirs. Apply it in your life and see what resonates, you know, see that choice made sense for him. It may not have been a good one for someone else because you know, that's what happens. What is good for you? What is the life you want to lead? What is the journey you want to experience? Because here's the thing you're not going to live through anyone. Else's point of view. You're not, not gonna know what life is from someone else's body or mind, you know it from you. This is you. Are you gonna be afraid to live life as you? Or are you gonna embrace it? And usually the thing that stops us from enjoying our life from, from our point of view is that someone told us once again, or someone down the line that we're not worthy of that love that we're not worthy of that thing. Look at the way I look, look at the way I have look at the color of my skin. If we believe that, then that's what stops me from enjoying life. And that's what stops from being present in this body, in this mind. So it becomes a singular journey because it is my own journey that I'm healing.

Dr. Reese (00:59:05):
I have your brother, Don Jose coming on the show in a few weeks. Anything I should ask him <laugh>

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:59:13):
Oh, ask him about the, the drum lesson,

Dr. Reese (00:59:16):
The drum lesson.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:59:18):
Yeah.

Dr. Reese (00:59:20):
Something when something, when you were kids.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:59:23):
No, no, it's him as an adult. <laugh> but it's a good lesson and ask and ask him about, about playing music with a bird.

Dr. Reese (00:59:32):
How cool is it to have, you know, family going on, you know, on this journey together, even though you said you guys don't really talk about the teachings and stuff, but you're, you're on the path at the same time. It's, it's, it's like three birds talking, you know, chirping in the, the tree.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (00:59:53):
We talk about it in our presentations. So we hear each other when we're doing presentations, you know? Right. You get to hear the new stuff and the process stuff and the story and the ahas and all that kind of thing. And it's like, we, I get to know my brother and my father in different aspects. That part is fun. And then touring with my brother is fun. It's it's, it's like being the teenage kids again, like going on and looking for record, record stores and coffee shops and things like that. That part is fun. You know, I was like driving around and, uh, uh, and me driving, cuz I like to drive and I seldomly let go of the stream wheel except for a night. Cause I can't see at night. So I give it the begrudgingly. I give it the keys to my brother and I've learned to do that. <laugh> one of the nice things is like I got sick once in one of these tours and my brother took care of me. And that was a beautiful thing. You know, I was like, I'm so used to taking care of everyone that it was nice to feel that my, my brother took care of me. That was a nice memory that was in when we were in Portland, Maine.

Dr. Reese (01:00:53):
Oh, that's gotta be a good thing because you know, being sick sucks, being sick on the road sucks even more. Yeah. You know, very vulnerable state to be sick when you're out, out and about. Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:01:08):
Yeah. And, and it gets it's, it's a little daunting, you know, but he took care of me and that was beautiful, you

Dr. Reese (01:01:15):
Know? Yeah. And you've been here to the Hartford Connecticut before, right? Yes.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:01:21):
Yes. I've been, we've been to Hartford, Connecticut. One of our favorite. Oh, that's another good question. You could talk about one of our favorite places to go is the mark Twain's house. We, we we've, we've done all the tours with like, you know, with the actors we've done, we've done the Butler. We've done the, the, the minister, the Reverend, and we've done. We haven't had, we haven't had one yet with the, with the wife or the daughter, but it's, it's their phenomenal.

Dr. Reese (01:01:49):
Yeah. Mark Twain is the most famous person to ever come out of Hartford. And, uh, I've been in that house. There's an energy in that house.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:01:59):
<laugh> oh God. When we're upstairs in that room, and then we realize that's where he wrote huckleberry thin you go, oh, this the space where hun uncle Berry, Finn, my dad and my brother, like all three of us when we were in that room, all three of us at the same time, when we all three of us got that realization, we're in the room where hu uncle Finn was written.

Dr. Reese (01:02:21):
Oh yeah. But not only that, you were also in the room where mark Twain and Cola Tesla used to play pool.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:02:31):
Oh, nice.

Dr. Reese (01:02:32):
And you know, I'm a big Tesla guy. I, I, that guy was just amazing. And, and mark Twain is amazing too. And just to have those two amazing, uh, personalities and figures in, in that room,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:02:50):
I better have been a phenomenal, like, like listening to that conversation, you know, but be a fly on the wall on that

Dr. Reese (01:02:55):
One. I gotta get you back out here to Hartford once the, uh, pandemic's over.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:01):
Yeah. Yeah. Well, we like it over there and we, we need to see more of the actors on the, the tour.

Dr. Reese (01:03:07):
Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:07):
We really enjoy it. And then Chris Grosso, our dear friend lives there too.

Dr. Reese (01:03:11):
Yeah. He was just on the podcast.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:14):
Yeah. How's Chris.

Dr. Reese (01:03:15):
Chris is good. Chris is good. We had a, we had a good conversation.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:20):
Nice.

Dr. Reese (01:03:21):
Yeah.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:21):
Yeah. Chris gross is an awesome guy.

Dr. Reese (01:03:24):
Yeah. His episode just came out two weeks ago this, see how everything sinks right up.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:30):
Yeah. That's pretty cool.

Dr. Reese (01:03:32):
Someone just got killed by a shark there.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:36):
Yeah. I just read about that. That's horrible.

Dr. Reese (01:03:38):
Great. White shark. Something you don't hear every day in Maine.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:42):
Yeah, I know. And, and every, that's the worst part. Cause now that you have that and people are gonna have all this fear and anger and just start killing sharks for no reason.

Dr. Reese (01:03:52):
I bet you, she, she was in the present moment

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:03:55):
And she rest in peace.

Dr. Reese (01:03:57):
You know what though? That, that's an interesting topic though, for, for somebody to come across a shark and get killed by this animal. That that's something that doesn't happen to people very often, right?

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:04:14):
No, no. It's just so rare.

Dr. Reese (01:04:16):
What, how does that equate to somebody's journey? Wrong place, wrong time. Just a random,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:04:26):
Yeah. Let, let a moment be a moment. You know, we can create a thousand stories out out of one thing I remember sitting, I was in Santa Monica when an elderly man hit the accelerator instead of the, of the brake and plowed through a farmer's market. Hmm. And it was the first time I ever seen bodies, uh, laying about on the street. You know, there was a body on top of the car. There's a body beneath the car. And the home mob was gonna try to get this older man. And they were saying, and I washed it. You know, my dad, my dad was there and he says, pushed me out. Like, oh, learn, you look at all these people and everything. And then you hear everyone around you and everyone's telling you saying a different story. They're all on the phone saying a different story.

Dr. Reese (01:05:16):
Mm.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:05:17):
The same event, a thousand stories and all true to the person who's telling the story. So we see what we want to see. We distort. We wanna see, so an event happened, this young lady, this woman happened to be in a place that that journey ended. And she's not the only per human who's that happened to everyone, goes through a moment where tragedy happens and you are in the wrong place in the wrong time. Sure. But you want to give it meaning. We like to give it to them and we create meaning and we give it all this definition is what we call spin in the news cycle. They call it spinning. Right? And that's why it makes us so divided. You know, people are spinning a news to make the fit, their

Dr. Reese (01:06:04):
Narrative,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:06:05):
Narrative, their bias or whatnot. But all that happened is just, it's a tragedy in the sense that a young woman's life was lost and I'll tragedy in the sense that eventually more sharks are gonna die from it if they go after them. But it's something to be careful of. But it's, depending on the story we give it, we can narrate it. And here's the thing. As soon as we start narrating the story, it's it stops being about this young woman. And it starts being about us. Who're telling the story, because now we're telling our impact of it.

Dr. Reese (01:06:41):
I remember seeing a YouTube video where this gentleman was talking about how he was a surfer and he got attacked by a shark, great white. And obviously he survived because he's telling the story and he was given the play by play. And he was saying that while he was in the shark's mouth, he remembered surrendering and coming to a place of calm inside of a shark's mouth.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:07:18):
Wow.

Dr. Reese (01:07:20):
And I was like, yeah, man, that's it right there. You know? And I, he survived obviously, but he was ready to die and he was cool with it. He surrendered, you know, his spirituality at his finest right there. <laugh> just surrendering to his final moment under water, inside of a shark's mouth.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:07:42):
And that's the thing you never know. You never know when that moment comes and where you're gonna be at, you know, you never know one, like what my grandma used to say, if you want to make God laugh, tell her your plans. <laugh>, you know, you can, you, you can, you can try your best to plan for something, but life will always have its own plan.

Dr. Reese (01:08:03):
So this little shark story, you know, sort of correlates with earlier on about an hour ago, when we talked about your dad, mm-hmm, <affirmative> telling you to go master death.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:08:15):
Mm-hmm <affirmative>,

Dr. Reese (01:08:16):
That's it right? The surrender. Yeah. The surrender of the moment.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:08:20):
Yeah. Cause you never know what's gonna happen, you know, it's coming and you know, don't know when it comes. So don't take things for granted and enjoy life saying yes to me at this very moment.

Dr. Reese (01:08:32):
And what better way to, to end this conversation then surrendering to death.

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:08:37):
Yeah. Thanks for having me. Thanks for having me on your program and uh, hope you have a lot of fun, Dr. Reese.

Dr. Reese (01:08:44):
Thank you very much. We're gonna, we're gonna get you out here in Hartford when, when we can,

Don Miguel Ruiz Jr. (01:08:49):
It'll be fun. I enjoy, I enjoy being over there. I like, I love running in front of, uh, capital building. It's one of the most beautiful capital buildings I've seen.

Dr. Reese (01:08:58):
<laugh> well, Hartford doesn't have much, but we got mark Twain and we got a nice capital building. <laugh> thank you for coming on. I mean, what a conversation, right? Definitely go to Don Miguel Ruiz, jr.com to check out his worker, just look him up on Amazon. I'm looking forward to talking to his brother and eventually his father as well on this podcast. Be sure to message me through the website or my social media. And let me know what you thought of this talk I had with Don Miguel and be sure to share and like, and do all that good stuff that keeps this flowing and reaching more and more people don't forget. My meditation album and podcast are both available on Spotify, apple music, YouTube, and more. If you're looking for my work, go to Dr. reese.com. That's Dr. Spelled out and I'll talk to you on the next episode.

Speaker 1 (01:09:57):
Thanks for listening to inner peace with Dr. Reese. If this episode opened your heart, feel free to share on social media and tell your loved ones. Also be sure to subscribe. So you never miss episode until next time.