Dan Millman Tastes Enlightenment While Peeling a Grapefruit


Dan Millman

It was a joy to work with Dan Millman on this story for my book, Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything. As Dan’s story illustrates, enlightenment can come at the most unlikely times and in the most unlikely places. Here is an excerpt from Dan’s story, beginning with his bio.

Millman, a former world-champion gymnast, martial arts instructor, and college professor, has for three decades explored the heart of the spiritual traditions. His keynotes, seminars, and trainings present practical ways to live with a peaceful heart and warrior spirit. Millman’s twelve books have inspired millions of readers in twenty-nine languages, and his work has influenced people from all walks of life. His first book, Way of the Peaceful Warrior, was made into a motion picture starring Nick Nolte. Click here to visit Dan’s website.

On an ordinary spring afternoon in 1967, I was sitting on a curb on Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, California, carefully peeling a pink grapefruit I had just purchased from the health food store behind me. In about an hour I would walk, with the help of a cane, down to Harmon Gymnasium to continue my strength-building and rehabilitation program. I was recovering from a badly broken leg, which I had injured in a motorcycle crash a few months before.

I was twenty-one years old, beginning my senior year of college. In that moment, though, I wasn’t thinking of past or future—I was just peeling that grapefruit, sitting on that curb, in a kind of peaceful reverie, watching the wheels of various cars drive by, noticing pieces of litter blowing in the street, and life was okay.

In the next instant, something happened. No sounds, visions, or angelic choirs marked the occasion—yet in an instant, my life shifted as I looked up and noticed that everything was perfect. This “noticing” wasn’t an insight or idea or thought or belief or experience, but a radical shift in worldview, a perceptual breakthrough, unearned and unasked for. This moment of grace arrived in an unguarded moment, in the space of a single breath.

Prior to this rather odd and spontaneous awakening on Telegraph Avenue, if I had heard the phrase, “It’s all perfect,” I might have thought it a good bumper sticker, mantra, or affirmation. But in those moments of openness, that whispered revelation struck like silent thunder, with the force of a tidal wave of transparent truth that turned my life around.

In the decades that would follow, I’d have various experiences generated by fasting, immersive spiritual practices, deep contemplation and meditation—rising bliss, insights about the nature of mind and the universe, a sense of unity with all things. But none of those experiences came close to this awakening to the certainty that everything was perfect exactly the way it was.

The exhaust coming from the cars driving by . . . perfect; the litter blowing in the street . . . perfect; my broken leg now healing . . . perfect; the people walking by . . . all perfect just the way they are. I embraced the whole of creation the way a mother might embrace her child.

If a mugger had attacked me in that moment, it would have been absolutely perfect—and my response would have been too, whatever it might have been. Life no longer had any “wrong” choices—every single one would lead to evolution and wisdom.

I remained aware that, as I sat on the curb, a war was raging in Vietnam, and people everywhere were experiencing joy and despair, life and death, pleasure and pain. Yet I was incapable of seeing, thinking about, perceiving, or imagining anything in creation as less than the perfect process of life unfolding. I knew with a certainty beyond anything I had ever known that all was exactly as it should be, and was happening for our highest good and ultimate well-being.

Click here to view all my posts related to my book, Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything.


If you feel more stressed than blessed . . . if you have more confusion than clarity about how to live your beliefs . . . if you long to live a richer, happier, more meaningful life . . . you will find a wealth of insight and guidance in Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World.

Through God’s Eyes is a road map for living a more peaceful, beautiful life. It’s the only book that explains how dozens of spiritual principles interact, how to weave them together into a cohesive worldview, and how to practically apply this spiritual wisdom to daily life.

Readers everywhere are discovering that when you challenge yourself to look through God’s eyes, the world around you changes, and so do you.

Who will benefit from reading Through God’s Eyes?
Anyone who is on a spiritual path, or wants to be.
Anyone who loves life, or wants to learn how to.
Anyone who is happy, or wants to be happier.

Click here to order your copy of Through God’s Eyes from GodsEyesAmazon.com.
For an inscribed copy, click here to e-mail Phil for information.

Click here to visit the Through God’s Eyes website.

Click on the link below to download a FREE 28-page chapter!

Click here to read endorsements from authors and thought leaders.

Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers.

Click here to ask Phil to add you to his e-mail list for updates on his blog and books.

Here is a two-minute video introduction to Through God’s Eyes.

Like to learn more about Through God’s Eyes? Here is a free 44-page PDF sampler from the book that includes:

• an overview of the book
• the complete table of contents
• the Foreword by Caroline Myss
• my Introduction
• chapter excerpts
• a sample end-of-chapter story
• endorsements from authors and thought leaders

Just click on the link below to download your free PDF sampler!

Schedule a Mastery Mentoring phone session with Phil to learn how to apply principles of spiritual living more effortlessly and effectively. Priced affordably! Click here to e-mail Phil for details.


Phil’s eBook, The Logic of Living a Spiritual Life: Supporting a Life of Faith Through Logic and Reason, is now available for 99 cents.

Order it at GodIsLogical.com.

In this eBook, you’ll find answers to questions like:
• What is the cornerstone of a spiritual life, and why?
• What is the secret to liberating yourself from other people’s judgments and expectations?
• How do you reconcile the “free will vs. Divine Will” conundrum?
• Why is there an exception to “Everything happens for a reason”?

Those who worship logic instead of God are only half right. Not only is it logical to believe in God and to live a faith-based life, the existence of a loving, benevolent God that governs all creation is perhaps the only systematic worldview that explains every aspect of life.

sixty-seconds-coverPhil is also the author of Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything, a collection of 45 inspiring, life-changing stories from prominent authors and thought leaders he interviewed. The roster of storytellers includes Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Neale Donald Walsch, Caroline Myss, Larry Dossey, Rachel Naomi Remen, Bernie Siegel, Dean Ornish, and Christiane Northrup. Sixty Seconds has been translated into four languages: Italian, German, Spanish, and Portuguese. Reading this book is like spending a few minutes face to face with each of the contributors and listening to their personal stories.

Click here to order Sixty Seconds.

Learn more by visiting the official Sixty Seconds website.

Click here to read unsolicited testimonials from readers.

Here is a three-minute video introduction to Sixty Seconds.

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