Self Mastery Course Feedback

Hi Gary,

Thank you for the follow up. I’m writing to give you some feedback. Since reading the four agreements and completing both your courses (Basic Self Mastery Series and Advanced Series), everything has changed for me. Incidentally, I found the four agreements by accident, it was a link on a website called F.O.G personality disorders for help with dealing with people like this (I’ve had several in my life including my mother) This help me see that continual trap I was falling into of freely loving and trusting the good in people only to my disadvantage. I struggled with the four agreements at first and I hunted the web for ways of implementing it for a while, I eventually found you and did both your Self Mastery courses.

A bit about me, I am a psychiatric nurse and also a trained counselor, I’m now aware that I went into these professions not only to help other people but to heal myself. The four agreements has superseded all of my five years of training and I have healed my old wounds.

I cannot put into words how much Gratitude I have for what your Self Mastery course has enabled me to do, I am Moved beyond anything I have ever felt before. What you have done is Beautiful.
Thank you.

It is my intention to meet you on one of your spiritual workshops / retreats and I look forward to giving you a big hug.

I am currently starting to build a new life and I’ve decided to change professions. I’m going to be a writer I’m working on my first book now.  It’s one where all the main characters have different mental health problems. Look out for it in the next couple of years – it will be done.
I’ve liked you on facebook, have a look through so you can see what I look like.
I love you.

Z. B.

Love as a Change Agent

Love is a great change agent.  When you are exposed to, and experience great love, your life has a tremendous chance to change.   In the experience of love your unhappiness from a limited perspective, and beliefs in fear and lies can not survive.

One of the challenges is that when you exposed to love, your ego will fight back. It will try to deny,  diminish, and distract you from what you feel.   Such is the nature of stories in the mind.  They don’t feed well on unconditional love and fear starving to death.

Love and Fear,,,, this is the battle ground within for the Spiritual Warrior.  It is a battle over one’s attention.  On one side is Love and all the expressions of Love.  On the other, is fear, and all the expressions of  fear.

Self awareness is a necessary trait of a warrior.  Being aware of his expressions  is how he recognizes which side he is on in each moment.

for practical steps and exercises on finding your way try the free sessions of the Self Mastery program. 

 

Controlling Your Attention

We don’t learn to control our attention when we are young. We have to learn to control our attention when we are adults.

When we are young we were told where to put our attention, who to put it on, and how long to keep it there. We learned to put our attention on what other people told us to. Since adults taught us to put our attention on them, or on what they wanted to put our attention on, (school work, chores, minding our manners, following the rules, etc) by default we learned not to put our attention on our self.   We became automated to have others control our attention.

Indirectly we learned not to pay attention to our emotions, what we were feeling,  or what we wanted.

When you become an adult, and you realize that your attention is still governed by all those rules you collected, or that your mind is looking for other people to direct your attention.  You might even feel uncomfortable if it is your own hands with no one telling you what to do. You may find your self trapped with your thoughts and beliefs controlling your attention.   Realizing that you are trapped, and don’t have control over your attention is one of the first steps towards freedom.

It is only as adults that we have the opportunity to take control over our own attention, notice how we feel, and direct our life in a way we want. This is something of an opportunity not typically available to us when we were children.

Oh,,, and it will take work, and many attempts to free your attention from limiting beliefs and fears.

Such is a spiritual warriors training ground.

Specific exercises for gaining control over your own attention can be found at my Self Mastery Course at  Pathway to Happiness. 

 

 

Having Things In Your Mind Under Control

I used to think I had things under control.  That is I believed I “knew” what was going on.  As I became more aware I realized that everything that I knew was just information that I had learned from other people.  I had unknowingly agreed with the ideas of other people about how the world worked, how people behaved, even what I was and what I wasn’t.

My next wave or realizations involved learning that what I knew wasn’t true.  This was humbling.  It was  also unsettling to realize that what I thought of the world and other people wasn’t true.  It was somewhat fearful to realize that the authorities that I looked to for direction and understanding of my world,,, didn’t always know what they were talking about.

Teachers didn’t know everything there was to know about life.  Professors of physics couldn’t explain why any particles were here, or what was the force driving the ones they could see.  Wake up in your adult years and learn that there may not be such a thing as gravity. Clergy weren’t always living a life of respect, love, and happiness so how could they guide others.

As I became more aware I noticed that more and more of the ideas in my own head weren’t true.  I had less to say because of this.

There was temptations to grab hold of a theology or philosophy for safety and claim it is what I believe in.  It will guide me.  But something within was holding out for Truth.

In the process of letting go of what I believed I knew that I knew less.  Over time I moved through the uncomfortable emotions that arise as we dissolve the chatter of internal dialog in the mind.   Embracing humility was liberating me from my Self Importance (ego).  There was freedom in not knowing.  What was a fearful process was becoming a quiet and peaceful mind.

For the spiritual warrior one of the challenges is to control the knowledge that is in their mind.  For ordinary men and women this doesn’t mean anything.  That is because knowledge and ideas run around in their mind uncontrolled and they don’t even notice.

 

This post on Having Things In Your Mind Under Control originally posted at:

http://www.toltecspirit.com/2010/07/under-control/

 

 

 

 

 

Fear and Power

My friend studied political science. He said politics was basically a scramble for power. But power is a need to control,,,, and a need to control is only necessary if you are afraid. So the scramble for power is really just a reaction to fear. If we really want to study political science we need to understand fear. Power is just the tail being wagged by the dog.

The irony here is that those that seek power often do so because they are powerless over their fear.

As a spiritual warrior,,, you will not develop real personal power until you develop awareness and win over your mind from fear.

 

 

Cleaning House and Cleaning Your Mind

It seems we spend more time cleaning our house than cleaning up our mind.  It’s nice to come home to a clean house.  But you don’t spend all your time there.  You spend a lot more time with your own mind than you do your house.  It makes sense then that you would spend some time making it a nice and enjoyable place to be.

For practical steps and exercises on cleaning up the fear based beliefs in your mind do the exercises in the Self Mastery course.

Cleaning Your House and Cleaning Your Mind

 

Be Impeccable with your Word

In the book The Four Agreements, don Miguel Ruiz offers the suggestion, “Be Impeccable with your Word.”    Some people interpret this to mean, “keep your word.”   It doesn’t.  Impeccability is not that simple.   For starters, being impeccable with your word has more to do with expressing your self in the direction of truth and love.  Other aspects are of significance, but this interpretation is most important.

It is important to use your word carefully. The way you express your self will impact your life, and others.  You have to be aware of what you say, and how you express your self to do this.  One of the results of impeccability is that you will say only what you mean, and you will mean what you say.   From the outside this appears to mean “keep your word.”

When the meaning of “Be Impeccable with your Word”  is taught as “keep your word” it is because one of two reasons.  First, the person leading the teaching is not familiar with the more important expression of truth and love.   The second happens when the person leading the group has an attachment to controlling the behavior or actions of others.

If you subscribe to the idea that impeccability is really about keeping your agreements, then you subject your self to possible harm and abuse unnecessarily.  Very possibly you end up using these four agreements to inflict emotional suffering on your self instead of freeing your self from it the way they were designed to do.

Suppose that you make the agreement to get married.  You make a big commitment to love, honor, and respect another for all the days of your life.  But perhaps after months or years together, the person you are married to changes.  Perhaps they become abusive.  Perhaps they are emotionally withdrawn, involved in addictions, or have an affair.

At a certain point you become tired of being abused and you want to end the relationship.  But by now you have this new spiritually enlightening agreement to Be Impeccable.  You think the agreement means that you can’t change your agreements.  With that interpretation you use the idea of impeccability to remain in a relationship that is abusive and disrespectful to your self.   This is not being kind and loving to your self.  This is not expressing love towards your self.  You are breaking the more important meaning of impeccability.

Besides, if you are in a relationship and your partner is disrespectful, unkind, and abusive, they have already broken the relationship contract.  They have not kept their side of the marriage agreement.  If someone is abusive to you, you do not have to keep your agreement to stay with them.  Staying with them all the days of your life was made within the context of love, honor, and respect in the relationship.  If they can not hold up their end of the agreement, then the agreement is broken.  You are free to go.  If you try to keep your half even when they have broken their half, that is not being honest and truthful about what has happened and therefore not impeccable.

Of course the two of you can each work on your half of how you treat each other.  It is very common to have lapses.   If your partner has lapses, but they have remorse, and they make an honest effort to improve, it can be worthwhile to work through the challenges.  However, it is very subjective to each person how much patience to have with someone.  No one can make that decision for you.

If and when you decide to end that relationship, you do it because of the love you have for your self.  You love your self so much that you want to be happy.  You also abide by the truth that you deserve to be happy.  With that impeccable expression of your love, you break your agreement to stay with the person abusing you.   In this case it is completely impeccable to break your previous  promises .

To be impeccable does not mean that you live your life according to the agreements you made in the past.  Practicing impeccability is just as much about freeing your self from the fear based and self limiting agreements of your past.
For exercies and practices in mastering the Four Agreements download and listen to the Self Mastery audio sessions.

Original post located at Be Impeccable with Your Word

The Mitote

The “mitote” (me-toe-tay) as described in The Four Agreements, refers to the cacophony of voices in your head.  They are all talking but none of them seem to listen.

The mitote is driven by all those false beliefs, self importance, fears, layers of denial and justifications.  As you become aware the mitote can appear to be an endless stream of useless chatter talking over itself.  Try to turn it off in the beginning and you get a lesson in humility.    As you learn to observe it with neutrality, which is a critical step in dissolving the mitote, you find that it often tricks you by pulling your attention into the conversation.

Yes,,, it is a matrix of illusions.   But you can keep it all straight when you are aware that the truth is simple, so simple that it doesn’t need words.

Fear of Death

A spiritual warrior doesn’t fear death. Death is inevitable. A warrior recognizes that to fear death is ridiculous waste of time.

It is also an act of disrespect towards the gift of life.

That a warrior has no fear of death is not extra ordinary.  It’s just common sense.  What is extraordinary is how a warrior is able to face such an inevitable outcome with sobriety and not flinch with fear.  A warrior is able to do this because she has control over her attention.  She is able to look straight into passing of her body with the awareness and will power  to not let her self be distracted by a  thought or belief.

To have control over one’s attention doesn’t just mean to focus on something by controlling your will. You also have to control the point of view you see it all from.  Many people can focus on death but do so from a point of view from fear or uncertainty.

A spiritual warrior is able to hold their attention on the immortality of their body from a point of complete acceptance and love for the unknown.

Overcoming your fear of death is not a major accomplishment.  It is a fairly obvious and straightforward approach to living a satisfying life.   The extraordinary accomplishment is the control a warrior has developed over their attention.