This week some practical considerations and personal thoughts — all in the context of our third week of reflection on The Principle of Proportion. This is Principle of Valid Action #4, from chapter 13 of the book (The Inner Look). It states: “Things are well when they move together not in isolation.”
This week we focus on this principle in my present situation. What follows are some personal reflections around that rather open-ended theme. At this point it seems worth repeating that I send out these personal and unofficial considerations in the spirit of dialogue and exchange. Whether they complement or clash with my own I look forward to hearing your thoughts about, and experiences with, this principle.
Reflecting on the Principle of Proportion I realize that in the various ambits of my life (work, family, friends, etc) I have a range hopes and fears, as well as all kinds of projects and aspirations; some clear, some very vague. No wonder then that getting all of this to work together harmoniously involves more than a little work.
Do my goals (or some of them) conflict among themselves? Or the reverse, do they, despite their diverse nature and importance, share a common direction? Sometimes I feel I manage to ignore internal conflict through a highly developed “ability” to avoid seeing clearly! A kind of semi-intentional blindness. If, just below the threshold of my daily awareness these desires and dreams exist in conflict with each other, it’s no wonder that I might feel weak, out of sorts, irritated… or in any case certainly not filled with a profound (or even tepid) Peace, vital Force or a Joy that’s not shaken by life’s daily difficulties. So maybe those negative registers have little, or even nothing, to do with the external happenstance to which I normally associate them. Perhaps they are, at least sometimes, registers and even results of my own internal conflict.
Would I be going too far by claiming that discovering, and deepening those registers (i.e. the direct, unmediated experience of Peace, Force and Joy) are useful, and attainable goals? What if I said that it is really possible to make those registers, those feelings, the permanent background of your experience? Would that be surprising?
Why does it seem more reasonable if I say the same thing but about fear, despair, and paranoia instead of positive, inspiring states? I don’t believe that’s a trivial question. All the contrary, I think it is a significant clue. Be that as it may, and as unlikely as it may seem, the creation of a permanent climate of Peace, Force and Joy is possible.
Of course permanence is relative. I’m not talking about an unwavering state of bliss. Things will happen, they will make you angry, sad, scared, etc. But the underlying nucleus of Peace, Force and Joy will be a sort of home-base to which you will automatically return (increasingly quickly) and from which you can eventually ascend more easily than you can descend.
How’s that for unlikely! But of course terms like ascend (to even more inspired states) and descend (towards negative emotions) imply a kind of mental map, or at least a scale of values, to which not everyone will agree.
Mulling these thoughts over I realize that if I really want to deepen these registers a first step is to study my perhaps conflicting and certainly varied, hopes. I have to prioritize them and give them some kind of order. With that in mind (as something to do not once but at various moments and situations) I turn to this specific principle and taking no more than 2 or 3 minutes I make note of 2 or 3 situations in my life where I can, and should, guide my actions in light of this principle.
These notes have been posted to the email list and Facebook page for the Community of Silo’s Message Toronto, Annex
We’d all love to hear your comments, thoughts, considerations, artwork, etc about any of this. In fact we’d be very happy to circulate your thoughts and meditations along with (or better, instead) mine.