Principle 8 Comprehended Action 4

Principle 8, fourth week
Every month we focus one of the 12 Principles of Valid Action. These can be found in Chapter 13 of the book, The Inner Look. Each week we look at a different aspect of that principle. This week’s Principle is  #8, “The Principle of Comprehended Action, it says: “You Will Make Your Conflicts Disappear When You Understand Them In Their Ultimate Root, Not When You Want To Resolve Them”.

A few weeks ago we looked at the overall idea of this principle, and how it applied in the present. Last week we focused on how the principle applied in past situations.  This week? The future of course.

So I plan take a bit of time and begin just by considering the near future and the conflicts I expect to encounter (whether internal, or external, whether with friends, family, co-workers or what have you). And I’m going to reflect on how I know from a lot of past experience that the events that I foresee unfolding won’t be resolved simply by my wishing that they would. And what about understanding their ultimate root? Will that resolve them? I’m not really sure that the principle says that.

The way I read it is that this comprehension is the necessary, but not sufficient condition to resolve the conflict. Nor the opposite that when I understand the roots of these issues then I can figure out how to make them disappear. I think that its more a simultaneous (concomitant) mutual unravelling of the two. As I go on gaining in understanding I of course change my behaviours — intentionally or spontaneously. And as I change my actions, my way of being-in-the world, I go on gaining new understandings that would not have been possible for me earlier.

I’d be interested in hearing where your reflections on this principle have lead.

These notes have been sent to the email list of The Community of Silo’s Message Toronto Annex, and posted on Facebook, as well as on my blog at