I grew up in a family where life was a struggle. You had to earn everything. Nothing came easy. I ended up working for an organization that dealt with wars and defense issues. Do you see the power of core beliefs? The trouble is that it was not who I was fundamentally. My own essence had more to do with healing and compassion. Embracing all the fights I encountered in my life, I had to rediscover the path to gentleness and easiness. On the way, I came to understand that I could be either, and embodied both the warrior and the peacemaker.
Human beings seem to harbor opposite characteristics within themselves, such as the overbearing and overstepping warrior, as well as the moderate and careful peacemaker. Life calls on us to explore at times the way of the warrior and at other times to play the role of conciliator. In fact, what may appear as contradictory roles can coexist peacefully within ourselves. Exploring these contradictions helps us navigate the various sides to our personalities and develop integrity, finding the right balance and adapting to various situations in changing circumstances.
As you travel your own set of contractions towards integrating your different faces, you will become more open to transformation and literally open up to others. You will see in differences the very evolutionary opportunities you need in order to live a rich life. You will recognize your own willingness to stand up for what you believe in, at a particular time and in a particular place, while providing enough room around you for others to choose different roles and another path altogether. You will not feel threatened in your own integrity by the beliefs of others. On the contrary, this will help you greatly to strive and incorporate the views and ideals of others into your mere existence, broadening your reality, thereby enriching your own ability to meet life’s challenges.
In questioning courageously our core beliefs, integrating wholeheartedly our various inner faces, we will fight the good fight and live peacefully with each other.
Do you like change? I tend to enjoy it and even call for it into my life regularly. I realize though that people are usually averse to change. We often say that human beings are creatures of habits. In reality we tend to call for a change of circumstances, as we meet regular bouts of adversity. We are often faced with trials and tribulations that seem utterly hopeless. We fight over and over again and yet we seem to always get the same results. We want change, by which we usually mean a change in our life or a change in the world. We cannot hope for transformation and wait for change to bring us different outcomes.
I always looked at change as an external factor that we embrace or refute. Real change actually comes from within, be it change in our lives or change in the world. Challenges are not external; they are internal. As we start seeing the source of our personal and world problems more clearly, we begin to understand how to best affect change. As we seek to move beyond our conflicts and obstacles, we need to turn to our thought patterns, our behaviours – not that of our neighbours; our own! The way we always look at things, the way we choose the same path day after day, year after year, our way of life will make sure we meet the same results over and over again.
It takes courage to see the root of your challenges sitting within yourselves. It takes bravery to question your choices, to uproot your ways of thinking and to seek innovation. These perspectives may have served you well. They may no longer be meeting your needs today. You are changing just as fast as the world is, but you may not realize it and continue to feed yourself with the old stories and dress with your childhood clothes: they no longer fit! You are the change you wish to see. The results you are seeking are closer than you think.
The key to making change is to accept that we are the change and to embrace ourselves fully. Massive transformation is afoot in our world, as a result of a tiny change – a change in perspective. Changing one thing can actually change everything. It only takes a new glance at the world. It is no longer possible to stand up to the acceleration of change, but it only takes a blink of an eye to be riding that wave.
At a time when our institutions are under severe stress, paralyzed by internal sclerosis and unable to adjust to a fragmenting world, answers lie within. We often search for our roadmap in guides and GPS, relying on external sources for guidance and information. The future belongs to those who have discovered their inner GPS and can trust it at all times, in all circumstances.
What kind of world traveller are you? Are you the type to research your trip through maps and travelogues, seeking information to get inspiration? Or are you the type to just take off, trusting that you will find inspiration on the road, and relying on your instincts?
The roads we are to travel in today’s world have not been paved. They will not appear in the maps and guides, which have been developed by others for other times. The only true expert on your path is you. Does that mean that you have to travel alone? Absolutely not!
Fellow travellers are key to humanity’s wellbeing. We are not meant to live our experiences alone. We need to congregate; we need to belong; we have to serve a community of likeminded individuals. When you find yourself travelling alone, consider joining a group of travellers or founding your own, sharing similar interests, ideals, or purpose. This is your support team to inspire you on the road.
In groups through resonance you will find the way. Give the group time and space to evolve in a natural rhythm of its own. Let it grow without influencing and shaping, but rather listening and feeling the rhythm – its own heart and soul. This circle will develop into a source of great strength, endurance, and will nurture each and every one through connecting to a sense of community and finding its place into the world
Today many observers of international relations are pointing to the dangerous impact of the ongoing war of words at the highest political level between North Korea and the United States. Indeed, words are energy. Language is power and has the potential to hurt as much as to heal. In fact, many people are becoming conscious of the connection between the public discourse reflected in our media daily and the way they feel generally. Many of us are therefore “turning off,” mindful of the fact that words are not abstract, disconnected entities used only to transmit information. They are transmitters carrying powerful feelings. What we hear and say is affecting our physical and emotional state as much as our thoughts.
We are effectively taking flight mentally–lifting off–at best seeking a different perspective, but often escaping, freeing ourselves from the energy carried around. We feel the urge to break free mentally when we experience new insights. Mentally, we feel constrained by habitual ways of thinking. Emotionally, we may experience the need to shake up the power of blockages, such as fear. Spiritually, we may be called upon to escape beyond the boundaries of our world in its current form and state. Taking flight is always an expression of opening up to new ways, opening our minds, hearts, and ourselves to new patterns.
However, increased awareness and opening up to new ways is insufficient for healing. Healing requires transformation. Without transformation, healing runs the risk of repeating negative patterns, and even reinforcing them through repetition. We may understand how we feel and why; that is enough to turn off from the news. But we do not know what to do about it in order to shift fundamentally how we feel and avoid a repeat of the story the next time we hear the news, or the next time we face conflict. To transform the impact of any war of words, let us remember Einstein, who said: “we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
It is not by mental construct that we will ultimately find solutions to the way we feel. We may have to create mentally a wall around us for protection. Such defensive methods may actually ensure that we survive emotionally and physically through challenging and threatening times. But time will pass and we will feel safe again. However, the same walls and mental constructs we’ve created will sabotage our future. The wall will no longer be needed, and yet it will remain as a force of habit. The stories we continue to tell ourselves will only fortify the wall. Let us invent new stories with heart and spirit.