The Daily Practice
This advice should be adjusted by the practitioner, to suit his or her circumstances.
1. Awake early, preferably a little before sunrise.
2. Wash yourself, and do so mindfully, with an attitude of going before the Gods in purity . Not only do you become physically clean, but the practice speaks to your subconscious through its inherent symbolism and will create a real change in you.
3. During those times of the day when you are performing your Pythagorean practice, attempt to dress in white. White symbolizes purity and sets these times of the day apart from the rest of the day.
4. Take a walk, and do so mindfully, without ruminating or analyzing, but be conscious of your self, your movements, and the sacredness of the Nature in which you “live, move and have your being.” If it’s practical, walk in a place you consider to be particularly sacred.
5. Pray and Meditate. Apollonius recommends praying to the Sun three times a day, in the morning, at midday and in the evening. Pray in a sacred space. If you don’t have what you consider to be a sacred space, use a ritual and make one. Use traditional prayers, such as, The Hymns of Orpheus (with the appropriate incense), prayers of your own, or a combination. It is also appropriate, at the evening prayer time, to say a prayer to the god of the day of the week, for example, Saturn on Saturday. In conjunction with the prayers, meditate. Remember, “Sit down when you worship.”
6. Exercise. I recommend Hatha Yoga, Tai Chi, Distance Running, or my favorite, Wrestling. Remember, “Tis best in every thing to use a mean.”
7. Eat in moderation.
8. If possible associate with other Pythagoreans or mystics from other traditions, and share ideas.
9. Be mindful of Universal Friendship, this includes vegetarianism.
10. Study scripture. I recommend, The Aeneid, The Odyssey, The Upanishads, Plato, Plotinus, The Pythagorean Sourcebook and Libraryand Marcus Aurelius.
11. “Never start on any task without first imploring the blessing of the gods.”
12. “Never let slumber approach thy wearied eyelids, ere thrice you review what this day you did: Wherein have I sinned? What did I? What duty is neglected? All, from the first to the last, review; and if you have erred grieve in your spirit, rejoicing for all that was good.” Do not neglect the “rejoicing for all that was good,” part! Everyone needs to pat themselves on the back now and again.
Written by James McKinnon