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In search of spirit notes

  1. 1. IN SEARCH OF SPIRIT<br />(Notes)<br />Suresh Fernando<br />2006 - 2009<br /> TOC o " 1-4" h z My Commitment To The Way of The Warrior PAGEREF _Toc219904082 h 3<br />Considerations PAGEREF _Toc219904083 h 3<br />Objectives PAGEREF _Toc219904084 h 3<br />The Question Of Truth PAGEREF _Toc219904085 h 4<br />On Truth and Faith PAGEREF _Toc219904086 h 4<br />The Way Of The Warrior: a distinctive spiritual paradigm PAGEREF _Toc219904087 h 5<br />Concepts PAGEREF _Toc219904088 h 8<br />Impeccability PAGEREF _Toc219904089 h 8<br />No Hard Boundaries PAGEREF _Toc219904090 h 9<br />Artificial Reality PAGEREF _Toc219904091 h 10<br />Internal Dialogue PAGEREF _Toc219904092 h 11<br />Patience PAGEREF _Toc219904093 h 12<br />Alertness PAGEREF _Toc219904094 h 12<br />Knowledge PAGEREF _Toc219904095 h 12<br />Seeing PAGEREF _Toc219904096 h 13<br />Power PAGEREF _Toc219904097 h 14<br />Personal Power PAGEREF _Toc219904098 h 15<br />Power: Exchange Of Energy PAGEREF _Toc219904099 h 16<br />Power Versus Control PAGEREF _Toc219904100 h 16<br />Power versus Dominance PAGEREF _Toc219904101 h 17<br />The Worthy Adversary PAGEREF _Toc219904102 h 17<br />No Fear/No Ambition PAGEREF _Toc219904103 h 17<br />The Last Battle PAGEREF _Toc219904104 h 17<br />Struggle PAGEREF _Toc219904105 h 18<br />Emotions As Indulgence PAGEREF _Toc219904106 h 18<br />Responsibility PAGEREF _Toc219904107 h 19<br />Love PAGEREF _Toc219904108 h 20<br />Warrior Spirit PAGEREF _Toc219904109 h 21<br />Compassion PAGEREF _Toc219904110 h 23<br />Fear PAGEREF _Toc219904111 h 23<br />Intellectual Authenticity PAGEREF _Toc219904112 h 24<br />Patience PAGEREF _Toc219904113 h 24<br />Physical Energy PAGEREF _Toc219904114 h 24<br />Lack Of Self Importance PAGEREF _Toc219904115 h 24<br />Death PAGEREF _Toc219904116 h 25<br />Action PAGEREF _Toc219904117 h 25<br />The Path PAGEREF _Toc219904118 h 26<br />The Breaking Point PAGEREF _Toc219904119 h 26<br />Well Being PAGEREF _Toc219904120 h 27<br />Discipline PAGEREF _Toc219904121 h 27<br />Control/Abandon PAGEREF _Toc219904122 h 28<br />Doing/Not Doing PAGEREF _Toc219904123 h 28<br />Hunting PAGEREF _Toc219904124 h 30<br />Stalking PAGEREF _Toc219904125 h 30<br />Inaccessibility PAGEREF _Toc219904126 h 30<br />The Nagual PAGEREF _Toc219904127 h 31<br />Unbending Intent PAGEREF _Toc219904128 h 32<br />Truth PAGEREF _Toc219904129 h 32<br />Knowledge PAGEREF _Toc219904130 h 32<br />Challenge PAGEREF _Toc219904131 h 32<br />Stopping The World PAGEREF _Toc219904132 h 33<br />Dreams PAGEREF _Toc219904133 h 33<br />Erasing Personal History/Eliminating Self PAGEREF _Toc219904134 h 34<br />Energy PAGEREF _Toc219904135 h 34<br />The Earth/World PAGEREF _Toc219904136 h 34<br />Practical Applications Of The Way Of The Warrior In Everyday Life PAGEREF _Toc219904137 h 35<br />Take Action PAGEREF _Toc219904138 h 35<br />Invest In Yourself PAGEREF _Toc219904139 h 35<br />Discipline/Habits PAGEREF _Toc219904140 h 35<br />Getting Closer To Earth PAGEREF _Toc219904141 h 35<br />Physical Health PAGEREF _Toc219904142 h 36<br />Places Of Power PAGEREF _Toc219904143 h 36<br />Long Walks PAGEREF _Toc219904144 h 36<br />Pushing Your Boundaries/Combating Fear PAGEREF _Toc219904145 h 37<br />Expecting More From Oneself PAGEREF _Toc219904146 h 37<br />Evidence Of Impeccability: Actions and Processes PAGEREF _Toc219904147 h 38<br />Evidence Of Everyday Life: States Of Consciousness PAGEREF _Toc219904148 h 39<br />Evidence Of Everyday Life: Actions and Processes PAGEREF _Toc219904149 h 39<br />Becoming PAGEREF _Toc219904150 h 39<br />Being PAGEREF _Toc219904151 h 39<br />The Deification Of Man PAGEREF _Toc219904152 h 39<br />Love and Energy PAGEREF _Toc219904153 h 41<br />Energy And Happiness PAGEREF _Toc219904154 h 41<br />Balanced Energy and Happiness PAGEREF _Toc219904155 h 42<br />The Ability To Love PAGEREF _Toc219904156 h 42<br />The Importance Of Immediacy PAGEREF _Toc219904157 h 43<br />Religion Versus a Connection With Spirit PAGEREF _Toc219904158 h 44<br />Identity And Spirit PAGEREF _Toc219904159 h 44<br />The “Emotion” Trap PAGEREF _Toc219904160 h 45<br />Loneliness and Faith PAGEREF _Toc219904161 h 46<br />Accessing the Energy of Spirit PAGEREF _Toc219904162 h 47<br />Thoughts on the Uniqueness of the Warrior PAGEREF _Toc219904163 h 50<br />My Commitment To The Way of The Warrior<br />Coming to terms with the notion of spirituality has always been a challenge for me. That one must be spiritual, in some sense, seems apparent. It is those that have a spiritual essence that actually seem happy, whatever that might mean.<br />Yet, what it is to be spiritual continues to escape me. That I should be something for which there is an existing community seems not to be the solution. If it were the solution that would be easiest. I cannot, however, defer to the thoughts of another on how I must live my life. I am too skeptical about the vagaries of human nature.<br />That said I have read much about spirituality and have been presented with different ways to live ones life, different ways to assign priorities and so on. Through my investigations in conjunction with constant self examination, I have come to the realization that if I espouse any wisdom tradition, it is the Way of the Warrior!<br />There is something about this tradition that speaks to me. <br />If feel that there is something essential about me that makes me a warrior, yet I feel that I have not come close to realizing my role in the world as a warrior. I am far too consumed by fear, uncertainty and doubt to actually be a warrior. The essence exists as potential, but has yet to be released. That energy within that give rise to this self concept is present within me, but thus far I have been losing the battle within, therefore am not expressing myself in the world as a warrior.<br />The time is now for me to except that this is the paradigm that I must live within, and if it is necessary that I develop the paradigm then so be it.<br />My commitment to the world, however, is not to share this paradigm as my own until I feel that I have achieved some of what I am striving for.<br />Until I feel as though I am a warrior, it is not becoming of me to present myself to the world as a warrior!<br />Spiritual Paradigms<br />God/Higher Power/Spirit…<br />Elimination of Self/Ego<br />The following essay is not, by any means, meant to be a thorough analysis of various spiritual traditions. It is only one mans attempt to make sense of his own path towards Spirit. That said, as one walks the path and examines, if only in a cursory way, what some of the core themes presented in the teachings of our great spiritual leaders, it becomes clear that there are certain themes that recur. The recurrence of themes must be carefully examined for the following reasons:<br />The Question Of Truth<br />We have trouble arriving at definitive truths that all of us can agree on since the basis of spirituality Transcends experience. The subject matter that is being examined by those that inquire into spiritual matters is by definition not something for which it is easy to derive concrete conclusions. We are searching, for God, Spirit, or some other abstract reality that will provide us with a coherent set of principles and a basis to guide our actions. Thus, the subject matter is something that transcends the bounds of experience.<br />On Truth and Faith<br />If we accept that there are difficulties with any definitive basis for truth within the context of spiritual discussions, then we cannot ignore the obvious question: what is the basis for having faith in a particular paradigm? What is the rationale for considering Christianity to be more worthy than Islam; Mormonism to be more worthy than Judaism etc.? In posing this question, we must be objective. We must, for the moment, suspend our own spiritual orientation and acknowledge the fact that we have faith in what we believe, you have faith in what you believe and they have faith in what they believe. Thus, all we have is faith. To the extent that this is true, the interesting question is:<br />To what do we attribute faith?<br />If we accept that the question of spirituality is the question as to the origin of faith, then we can begin an examination of this question by examining the range of spiritual domains with a view to determining whether or not our examination will reveal something to us. In other words, we must conduct a pseudo scientific enquiry. We must examine Christianity, Islam, Judaism etc, and see if we can identify common patterns. Therefore, we must ask:<br />Does spirituality have an identifiable structure?<br />If we conduct this examination, we will conclude the following:<br />Spirit expresses itself similarly to all of us<br />Spirit becomes anthropomorphized<br />Elimination of Self/Ego<br />Faith<br />Ritual<br />Symbols<br />Discipline<br />Asceticism/renunciation<br />Our examination of the Structure of Spirituality has revealed that the spiritual practices of those around the world have certain similarities. Thus, we are at the very least faced with the question as to how we can understand the similarities between spiritual practices. Why does spirituality have a structure?<br />In answering this question, we are thus presented with the following possibilities:<br />The Path to Spirit is Exclusively Given: Spirituality is an expression of Spirit such that a specific embodiment of Spirit is the correct one. Thus, we suggest that it is metaphysically possible that the Christians are right or that the Muslims are right etc. The implication of this is that if a particular spiritual orientation is correct, it is at the expense of the other orientations. <br />The Path to Spirit is Inclusively Given: Spirituality is an expression of Spirit such that no specific embodiment of Spirit is the correct one.<br />The Way Of The Warrior: a distinctive spiritual paradigm<br />One facet of the Way of the Warrior that is compelling is the fact that it is a tradition that has not been forced upon the world. In fact, those that were born outside the tradition, but have had the privilege to have been exposed to the tradition have had to actively seek it out. A concerted effort has had to be made in order to evolve the relationships that were necessary to learn the practices and the ideology that defines this path.<br />This is in stark contrast to most “mainstream” religions which seek to convert others and to spread the word. This contrast with more popular religions is further emphasized by the fact that these traditions are in many ways, steeped in mystery and secrecy. <br />It is not the purpose of this paper to enter into an anthropological exercise, the object of which is to try to establish with any certainty why this is the case, only to observe that it is the case. If we can hazard a guess, however, we would make the contention that these traditions are those espoused by indigenous populations in North and South America – areas that have been conquered by the white man. Therefore, it may be the case that it is force of necessity that has caused the traditions to be veiled in secrecy.<br />Reflections On The Way Of The Warrior<br />The following are a series of quotations from the various works of Carlos Castaneda as well as other writers within the Toltec Warrior tradition. They will be presented in no particular order, and with no reference to the specific texts from which they have been cited.<br />The objective is to give the reader the ability to apprehend the psychological state of the warrior through the presentation of a range of ideas and imagery from various angles. As with all complex conceptual frameworks, it is not possible to precisely elucidate what it is to be a warrior. All that is possible is to provide the reader with sufficient impetus to assist them in determining what it means to them.<br />Each quotation will be accompanied by commentary, the objective of which is to provide an enhanced perspective, as well as to assist the reader in bringing the various concepts together into a coherent whole.<br />A Warrior knows that survival in the face of continual struggle requires strength! It is the active objective of the warrior to continually make himself stronger and better able to face the struggles with which he will be presented.<br /> <br />Concepts<br />Impeccability<br /> “He then checked my carrying net to see if the food gourds and my writing pads were secured and in a soft voice said that a warrior always made sure that everything was in proper order, not because he believed that he was going to survive the ordeal that he was about to undertake, but because that was part of his impeccable behaviour.”<br />“A warrior is impeccable when he trusts his personal power regardless of whether it is small or enormous.”<br />One of the central concepts on the Path Of The Warrior is the notion of impeccability. If we look in the dictionary we see that this means “without fault” or faultless. It can also mean “without sin”, but not as defined in Christian tradition. In the Way Of The Warrior, there is no discussion of right or wrong in a strictly moral sense. There exists no notion of “thou shalt not…” All actions are a possibility, and are acceptable as long as they are conducted with Impeccability.<br />For a spiritual paradigm to speak to us, it is important that we be able to demystify concepts, and to transform them from the realm of the conceptual to a form in which they provide us with guidance from moment to moment. In many ways, the concept of impeccability is so important with the Warrior tradition that it is akin to a concept of morality within an alternate tradition. To be Impeccable as a Warrior is as important as being a Good Christian.<br />If this is so, it is important to closely examine what it is to be impeccable. The warrior tradition is different from mainstream spiritual traditions in that it does not claim that any form of behaviour is wrong! Please think about this for a moment. Nowhere within this tradition does it say, “Thou shalt not kill!” The implication is that there are certain circumstances in which a warrior may be forced to kill. The beauty of this is that we are not faced with the obvious disconnect that other traditions are faced with, as it is clear that there are certain circumstances in which it is not only acceptable to kill, it may in fact be laudable. <br />The Warrior tradition does not define a moral framework, it defines a relationship with spirit that gives us behavioural guidelines that will assist us in our efforts to survive in this world harmoniously with others, we well as with the Earth itself.<br />Therefore, to be Impeccable, is no more than to act as a Warrior should: To act as a Warrior should is not something that can be clearly defined distinct from your consciousness of the world. It cannot be postulated for you. <br />Impeccability can also be understood as the wise utilization of energy. One of the things that is extremely clear to a warrior is that we must be careful with our energy. We must be diligent in accumulating it, and frugal in its utilization. Therefore, impeccability carries with it the obligation to be accurate and precise in our intent and actions.<br />To be impeccable is to be pure in our intentions. This is so since the warrior comes to understand the nature of the connection between energy and the purity of intention.<br />To be impeccable is to be precise in the determination of the relation between our intentions and our actions. The warrior wastes not.<br />To be impeccable is to be aware and attuned to the moment, for without this ability all else is impossible.<br />Clearly, in order to be impeccable, we must also therefore, observe keenly and think strategically, for, if not, we will not have the necessary comprehension of our circumstances, nor the wisdom with which to act.<br />You will need to define Impeccability for yourself, and then work towards walking an Impeccable Path as a Warrior!<br />No Hard Boundaries<br />What has been alluded to above, and what is most compelling about the Warrior tradition is that there are no hard boundaries. It is never stated that one should always do this, or should never do that. This orientation is distinct from most mainstream spiritual paradigms, which define strict rules for behaviour – apparently handed down from “God”.<br />If skepticism of religion and spirituality is a condition of modernity, we must ask why? Why is it that religion does not hold the same kind of sway that it did in the past, and why does it not seem to address the issues that characterize our times? Simple questions that we must ask are:<br />Why is it that, historically, there has been so much oppression, murder, violence and pain in the name of spirituality?<br />Why is it that, even today, spiritual premises are utilized as the basis for armed conflict, terrorism and the imposition of our will on others?<br />Why do so many of our youth feel disconnected from any meaningful spiritual framework?<br />The simple answer to these questions is that many mainstream spiritual traditions have lost their credibility. Modernity can be, in part, characterized by an increased awareness of activity that is distanced from oneself. This is facilitated by television and other forms of media that allow us access to information relating to other cultures and what is happening elsewhere in the world. This free flow and access to information makes it much more difficult to prevent alternative ideologies to present themselves. This in turn leads to skepticism. This general state of skepticism leads one to be more skeptical that they should behave in such and such a way because they are being told to.<br />Modernity has created a healthy skepticism for spiritual frameworks because the inconsistencies in these frameworks have been revealed. Whether it be the sexual abuse of children by Roman Catholic priests, or the murder of thousands of innocents in the name of Jihad, there is a collective sense amongst the rational majority that this is not God’s work.<br />Ultimately, skepticism flows from “hard boundaries” – a clear definition of what is right and wrong or what should/should not be done. When we are told what to do, we may accept this, but we will think long and hard as to why we should do this. If we see that those who are telling us to do these things are not acting in accordance with the fundamental principles that they themselves espouse, we naturally question the entire edifice that they have helped to construct.<br />It becomes apparent that the paradigm is simply a mechanism for garnering and maintaining power. There is nothing spiritual about this.<br />We are all seeking divine guidance, the Warrior’s path is simple in that all it really postulates is that we are born, we are all connected to the Earth and to each other and we will die. The key is to learn how to survive. In order to survive we must be Impeccable.<br />Impeccability gives the Warrior the greatest possible opportunity to live a long, peaceful, productive and prosperous life!<br />Artificial Reality<br />Since a Warrior is aware of the fact that his state of perception is not something that is absolute in any sense, he is also aware that this state of perception must be created and reinforced by some mechanism in his mind. With some thought it becomes apparent that what is responsible for preventing him from becoming an Impeccable Warrior is his own mind! In fact there is nothing, or no one else to blame. What is to blame is the sum total of ones perceptions about the world and oneself that form the construct that we call our Self. <br />The Self has evolved over the course of our lives, commencing on the day that we were born. Since that day, we have received messages from our family, our friends, our teachers, the media etc., all telling us what the world is. This set of perceptions becomes hardened over time and a sense of certainty envelopes our perceptions of things. As we grow and start to think, we believe certain things and we attribute something absolute to the things that we believe. We think that we know what is true. If we are wise, we may concede that we believe to be true is only true for us. However, little do we know that this, also has no real meaning.<br />In order to better understand this idea, lets do a little thought experiment. Think of a chair in your house. If I were to come to your house, and we were to both stand in front of your chair and look closely at it, what would we see? We may see a wooden object with four legs, a flat surface supported by these four legs, a wooden back with some plastic attached to it etc. Clearly we would see something. However, since you and I are standing in different places in your kitchen, we would not see precisely the same thing. If there were some magic machine that could actually capture precisely what I saw, it is highly unlikely that it would be precisely the same as what you saw. Therefore, our personal lens in some way filters the chair. There may be something essentially similar about what we both saw, but there is also something essentially dissimilar. There is no sense in which cognition is not partly a subjective experience. The above example is very simplistic, but serves to illustrate the general point. Imagine the complexity of trying to characterize perceptual differences that coworkers in the same company have. In these situations, the variables are infinite, and encompass not only spatial issues (the look of the office for example), but also all of the relationships within the office, group dynamics etc. This complex web of relationships is what characterizes much of what we are situated within as human beings, and therefore it is clear that we see things differently.<br />If we can accept that we see things differently, however that may be defined, we must ask ourselves how real the things are that we see.<br />What would it mean for these things that we see to be real? Would they somehow be attributed to God? Would our perspective somehow be more absolute than others? Do we have access to some truth that others do not? If so, how fortunate!<br />There is nothing real about anything! What we see is simply our own construct, and therefore we have the ability to see things differently.<br />The challenge for the Warrior is to see things in a manner that enables him to be Impeccable.<br />Internal Dialogue<br />Our internal dialogue enables the maintenance of our artificial reality. What we continually say to ourselves serves to define who we are and what we think about. A warrior must act with an awareness that ones thoughts serve to construct ones self perception and the totality of ones reality. These thoughts, however, are not arbitrary nor are they completely beyond ones control. We can act in relation to ourselves in a manner that serves to moderate and define our own thoughts.<br />This is the purpose of meditation – to establish a level of consciousness of ourselves in relation to our own thoughts.<br />Patience<br />Patience is a hallmark of a true warrior.<br />It is not the arbitrary passing of time. Patience must not be confused with lethargy.<br />It is the consciousness of the temporal nature of life – that life unfolds organically and that everything that must develop requires time to develop.<br />It is the consciousness that there is no requirement to escape the present. The moment with which one is present is the moment that one has been blessed with. Be present in this moment and make the most of it.<br />Alertness<br />A warrior must, at all times, be alert and aware of his surroundings. This carries with it the implicit assumption that the warrior’s judgment cannot be clouded. Therefore, the warrior does not indulge in excessive levels of intoxication – not because this is immoral, but because one cannot act as a Warrior would without precise, awareness and the ability to act in a controlled manner in response to ones awareness.<br />Knowledge<br />“A man of knowledge is one who has followed truthfully the hardships of learning… A man who has, without rushing or faltering, gone as far as he can in unraveling the secrets of personal power.”<br />“Any warrior could become a man of knowledge… a warrior is an impeccable hunter that hunts power. If he succeeds in his hunting he can be a man of knowledge.”<br />The ultimate objective of the Way Of The Warrior is to become Man Of Knowledge. One becomes a Man of Knowledge when one has mastered the elements of Personal Power. In the Warrior tradition, accessing knowledge occurs when one has mastered personal power because it is understood that power is an elemental structure of the universe that one must work towards accessing. Power is not simply something that one evolves. It is not merely a description of a state of action or activity that will give one the capacity to impact ones world (although by default this is what happens); power is external to oneself and is synonymous with Spirit. Power exists at the edge of Spirit and is directly accessible. The Path of Impeccability will allow us this access. Therefore, once we have been fortunate enough to witness power directly, we have also learned… <br />Knowledge and Power are inseparable in the sense that we cannot see power without having learned something; without having accessed knowledge in some way.<br />Essential in the Way Of the Warrior is that Power is as elemental as God is in other traditions. Power is no less real than God. It is when we see this, that we are transformed.<br />That we hunt for power is the acknowledgement that we must be conscious of the ways of accessing our own personal power. This can be through the mitigation of patterns of behaviour that are detrimental, or the cultivation of patterns of behaviour that will benefit us. In either case we must observe that which needs to be done to make ourselves stronger and take the steps that are necessary in this direction.<br />Seeing<br />“Seeing, of course, is the final accomplishment of the man of knowledge, and seeing is attained only when one has stopped the world through the techniques of not-doing.”<br />As in other spiritual traditions, the final accomplishment of the Warrior is to “see things are they truly are”. <br />The path to seeing involves not-doing, in the sense that what we currently do, distracts us from what we should be seeing. This notion is based upon the idea that our artificial reality is a construct that distracts from seeing. Since this construct has evolved as a result of what we have been doing, the only way to reverse the construct is to not-do. Therefore, not-doing becomes part of the path to seeing.<br />This idea is consistent with the theme of renunciation or asceticism as espoused in other spiritual traditions. The idea is that we are distracted by the material world which provides us with indulgences and causes our consciousness to deviate from a higher level of awareness. It is not surprising that all spiritual traditions teach us that we must reduce our requirements to that which is most essential in order for us to see what we must see. <br />Not-doing is the articulation of this in the Path Of The Warrior.<br />Power<br />The idea of power is a central construct in the philosophy of the warrior. For the warrior, all relationships and interactions are characterized by a power dynamic. This is a tricky topic and must be examined closely and understood clearly. There will be a natural resistance amongst readers to the above contention due to the pejorative connotations associated with the notion of power. Power, unfortunately, is typically abused.<br />To say that the primary construct of the world is defined by power relationships is only to say that there is some form of imbalanced duality that provides one element in the duality the ability to exert a greater level of influence over the other. The evidence of this is right before our eyes in the relationships of our friends, family, in the workplace etc. Furthermore, we all know that some people have more power than others, some institutions have more power than others, some animals have more power than others etc. This duality exists.<br />Power is an inherent structure of reality, and is purely an active capacity. It does not carry within its concept the necessity to act or to utilize power in any way.<br />“Power is something a warrior deals with… At first it’s an incredible, far fetched affair; it is hard even to think about it. This is what’s happening to you now. Then power becomes a serious matter; one may not have it, or one may not even fully realize that it exists, yet one knows that something is there, something which was not noticeable before. Next power is manifested as something uncontrollable that comes to oneself. It is not possible for me to say how it comes or what it really is. It is nothing and yet it makes marvels appear before your very eyes. And finally power is something in oneself, something that controls one’s acts and yet obeys one’s command.”<br />A central theme in the Way Of The Warrior is that Power is distinct from oneself. It is something real and tangible that manifests itself in the world. It is inextricably linked to everything and defined all relationships. It has a life of its own that can manifest itself in the form of spirits or other life forms. It is alive… As a warrior, it will be revealed to us if we are patient and impeccable!<br />“A warrior never turns his back to power without atoning for the favors received.”<br />“Power has the peculiarity of being unnoticeable when it is being stored.”<br />From a practical perspective, the idea here is that we gain personal power as we become increasingly inwardly directed and less subjected to the activities and influence of others. To the extent to which we have traditionally perceived power, our quest for it, we see no change in our lives. We do not think that we are becoming stronger in any way. We are simply focused on becoming an impeccable warrior. Lo and behold, one day we will realize that we have become personally more powerful!<br />Personal Power<br />Given the above, it is not surprising that one of the primary objectives of the Warriors Path is the quest for personal power. As outlined in the work of Castaneda this personal power is very real in the sense that as the warrior gains strength, his ability to carry out extraordinary feats and to transform his environment in superhuman ways increases. As he gains power, he can do more.<br />“A hunter of power entraps it and then stores it away as his personal finding. Thus personal power grows, and you may have the case of a warrior who has so much personal power that he becomes a man of knowledge.”<br />The ultimate objective along the Warrior’s path is to become a man of Knowledge. This is the culmination that is the end result of the accumulation of personal power. As is subtly revealed in the above quote, personal power is accumulated through impeccable behaviour. If we behave impeccably, we gain power. To not behave impeccably is to waste energy unnecessarily, and to therefore deplete our stores of personal power.<br />“If you store power your body can perform unbelievable feats. On the other hand, if you dissipate power you’ll be a fat old man in no time at all.”<br />The works lf Castaneda and the others do no explicitly state that it is necessary to actively focus on our physical being. We are not told, for example, to exercise regularly, although this is logically a positive activity. What is encouraged is the taking of long walks, as this becomes a mechanism to practice Stopping The World through the means of quelling our Internal Dialogue.<br />What is continually alluded to, however, is the fact that the accumulation of personal power does have implications for ones physical body, We are all energy, and therefore, if our fields of energy are dissipated, this impacts our physical form as well. <br />“Everything a man does hinges on his personal power… Therefore, for one who doesn’t have any, the deeds of a powerful man are incredible. It takes power to even conceive what power is.”<br />“A warrior buries himself to find power, not to weep with self pity.”<br />There are times in the life of a Warrior where it is necessary to retreat and to restore himself. In modern parlance we may even call it “recharging ones batteries!” During those periods, when ones energy does not seem as it should be, the Warrior does not indulge in self pity. He is aware of the fact that some battles take their toll. In some cases, battles are even lost. What is important is that he continually participates in the War! Sometimes retreating to a bunker is necessary for survival!<br />At all times, even in times of reduced energy and retreat, the Warrior must maintain his impeccability – he must maintain his wakefulness, his attentiveness and must utilize his energy wisely.<br />Power: Exchange Of Energy<br />There is a flow of energy in all interactions. The constituent parts of this flow of energy can include the Warrior, Spirit and any other participants in the interaction. The warrior can access the energy of Spirit, Therefore, for our purposes; the energy equation is not a zero sum game. The proper interactions with others can create energy, or at the very least we are provided with the ability to access the energy provided by Spirit. <br />We have all experienced situation, either alone, or with others where we were uplifted! Similarly, we have also experienced situations that are draining. The goal must be to direct ones actions with the mind of a Warrior, in a manner that results in the creation of Energy<br />Power Versus Control<br />When the warrior seeks power he is not seeking the ability to control others; he is seeking the ability to be Impeccable at all times. The warrior seeks power over himself, as that is the foundation for personal power. It is not possible to act with power without impacting the actions of others, but the focus is not on impacting the perceptions or actions of others, but on ensuring that the Warrior has given himself fully in the situation.<br />As a Warrior we know our capacity, we are attuned to our strengths and our gifts. We know the circumstances in which we can most effectively impact a situation. It is our duty to act as a warrior with a view to a full expression of ourselves in the moment. As impeccable warriors, we must do all that we can in each moment, as well as a little bit more. That is the Way of the Warrior. As a result, we must fight and face the challenge. Our object of our fighting is not to hurt others, nor is it to heal others – necessarily. We are fighting because that is what the moment requires. Our fighting is an act that is defined by the requirements of Spirit and the Infinite Possibility Of The Moment.<br />The most obvious example of the role of an athlete in a contest. The athlete does not attempt to destroy the opponent, the athlete simply expresses his power to the best of his ability within the domain in which they are operating. His actions are directed towards a specific goal, and there are others that will be impacted by his actions. His actions, however, are not designed specifically with a view to their impact on the other – the other is simply a participant on his path.<br />The Warrior therefore does not aim to control others in any way. Others are free to walk with the warrior, be our adversary or be a non-participant. Any option is acceptable.<br />The Warrior simply reveals himself to the best of his ability with absolute force and clarity. <br />Power versus Dominance<br />The Worthy Adversary<br />It is inherent in any interaction that there be opposing forces.<br />No Fear/No Ambition<br />One of the central themes in the Way Of The Warrior is the idea that we must walk a path that is devoid of Fear and Ambition. In fact, fear is the primary enemy of the warrior. If one does not conquer fear, one has no hope of ever walking the Warriors Path. This is something that all of us can relate to, and is a theme that is discussed at length in the modern day Personal Growth and Self Empowerment literature. We likely all agree that in order to effectively move forward with our lives, it is necessary to walk a path without fear.<br />The question of ambition is a more complex one, as it would appear at first glance that the quest for knowledge and power (which are central goals on the Warriors Path), reflect ones ambition. However, this is not the case as power is not synonymous with ambition. Ambition is the desire to elevate oneself over others. One is ambitious to the extent that one believes that one is superior, or has the capacity to be superior to others. Power, on the other hand, is simply a transformatory capacity, within which there are no implicit value judgments. To be ambitious implies an effort to differentiate yourself from others.<br />The Last Battle <br />“Acts have power… Especially when the person acting knows that those acts are his last battle. There is a strange consuming happiness in acting with the full knowledge that whatever one is doing may very well be one’s last act on earth. I recommend that you reconsider your life and bring your acts into that light.”<br />“Let each of your acts be your last battle on earth. Only under those conditions will your acts have their rightful power. Otherwise they will be, for as long as you live, the acts of a timid man.”<br />A warrior is fully alive during every moment of his life. He wastes no time whatsoever. The warrior takes nothing for granted and is grateful for this moment of life since he knows with certainty that he could very well be dead momentarily. With this knowledge, the warrior approaches each moment with an awakened mind, an alert spirit and on the tip of his toes! The warrior is always ready to act with power and without fear. <br />The Warrior asks; If this is my last opportunity to act, how would I act?<br />Struggle<br />“Our death is waiting and this very act we’re performing now may well be our last battle on earth… I call it a battle because it is a struggle. Most people move from act to act without any struggle or thought. A hunter, on the contrary, assesses every act; and since he has an intimate knowledge of his death, he proceeds judiciously, as if every act were his last battle. Only a fool would fail to notice the advantage a hunter has over his fellow men. A hunter gives his last battle its due respect. It’s only natural that his last act on earth should be the best of himself.”<br />As Warriors, we accept the fact that we are faced with continual struggle. We struggle with ourselves, with others, with our perception of ourselves, our perception of others. In short everything that we do and everything that we think about involves some underlying tension; a push/pull duality that defines the interaction.<br />As Warriors we accept this struggle with no judgment. We do not feel frustration, anger, or pain. We do not revel in the fact that we feel that we are better able to cope with struggle. We do not feel good about ourselves because we feel that we may be stronger; nor do we feel sad about the fact that we may be weaker.<br />We simply accept the reality that this is what we are faced with.<br />As Warriors we face each moment looking alertly straight ahead!<br />Emotions As Indulgence<br />“… loneliness is inadmissible in a warrior. He said that warrior-travelers can count on one being on which they can focus all their love, all their care: this marvelous earth.”<br />The warrior sees all emotions as a form of personal indulgence; a reinforcement of himself and his importance, as pain, suffering, ecstasy, happiness… are feelings based upon some reference expectation in relation to the outside world. It is not possible to feel sad without feeling that the world has not granted us what we deserve. It is not possible to feel happy without feeling thankful that we have been granted something that we may or may not deserve. In either scenario there is an implicit assumption that things should have been a particular way. We are grateful when things go our way, but are unhappy when they do not. <br />The Warrior does not see things this way. Things simply are as they are. They are not intrinsically good or bad, they are simply the result of the interaction between our spirit/energy and Spirit. They are the result (or lack thereof) of our impeccability.<br />How dare we think that things should be any different for us – are we so important?<br />For us to indulge ourselves by forming a perspective that things should be a certain way for us; that our lot in life should be any different is the beginning of the end, and is not a perspective that a Warrior can afford to tolerate.<br />The Warrior approaches each moment as a challenge and that is all there is to it!<br />“… like any man I deserved everything that was a man’s lot – joy, pain, sadness and struggle – and that the nature of one’s acts was unimportant as long as one acted as a warrior.”<br />“No matter how much you like to feel sorry for yourself, you have to change that… It doesn’t jibe with the life of a warrior.”<br />A warrior focuses on survival. Survival requires strength, and self-pity is unbecoming. Furthermore, why are we so important that we should think that Spirit is conspiring against us to present us with a bad lot?<br />Responsibility<br />“The hardest thing in the world is to assume the mood of a warrior… It is of no use to be sad and complain and feel justified in doing so, believing that someone is always doing something to us. Nobody is doing anything to anybody, much less to a warrior.<br />The idea that we must come to terms with the irrelevance of our emotions is something that the average man will meet with resistance. This is an orientation that is counter intuitive to everything that we have been taught. It is part of our Artificial Reality; that we should feel a certain way in certain situations. <br />An average man allows others to do things to him. He is subject to their whim, and to this extent is at the mercy of others. A warrior only willfully follows and assumes full responsibility for the results of his actions.<br />A warrior assumes full responsibility at all times for everything that has ever happened in his life. No one else is to blame. A warrior is a conscious decision maker and is aware of the consciousness of his decisions.<br />Therefore, a Warrior cannot ever be angry at another for acting upon him in some way. This has no meaning whatsoever.<br />“All of us, whether or not we are warriors, have a cubic centimeter of chance that pops out in front of our eyes from time to time. The difference between an average man and a warrior is that the warrior is aware of this, and one of his tasks is to be alert, deliberately waiting, so that when his cubic centimeter pops out he has the speed, the necessary prowess to pick it up.”<br />The Warrior pays attention and waits patiently. He trains his body and his mind so as to be able to identify and seize opportunities as they may present themselves. He understands, however, that these circumstances of chance are completely beyond his control, and will only be accessible if he has fine-tuned his craft, and is truly impeccable!<br />The Warrior is not so foolish as to chase potentially idle dreams, or to have expectations other than to live in a state of readiness. It is this state that gives him the most pleasure!<br />Love<br />“… we must have something we could die for before we could think that we have something to live for.”<br />Need there anything further that needs to be said about love? For the warrior, there is no option but to place oneself in harms way for those that one loves or for that which one loves. In fact the true essence of the spirit of the warrior is only truly revealed in this moment when a decisive choice is made to place ones own life at risk. For the warrior, the question of, do I love her?, is answered by the obvious next question; would I die for her?<br />This is not some impractically heroic principle that is designed to reflect a Warrior’s disdain for death. On the contrary, the Warrior relishes life and the opportunity to be a warrior from moment to moment! There is nothing appealing about death. However, a Warrior knows that if one is not willing to die for the ones that one loves, then one is not a warrior. This is an affront to oneself!<br />In the moment that the warrior makes that choice, his Warrior spirit is revealed in its most essential form!<br />Warrior Spirit<br /> “The humbleness of a warrior is not the humbleness of the beggar. The warrior lowers his head to no one, but at the same time, he doesn’t permit anyone to lower his head to him. The beggar, on the other hand, falls to his knees at the drop of a hat and scrapes the floor for anyone he deems to be higher; but at the same time, he demands that someone lower than him scrape the floor for him.”<br />The warrior looks every man in the eye, and treats everyone as equal since he knows that we are faced with the same struggle. A warrior does not look up to anyone nor does he look down upon anyone. He consciously levels the playing field at all times. He does this for many reasons, including the fact that to look up or down to others, is to attribute some status or position to others. This is not something that should be done since the only thing that matters is ones own impeccability and personal power. It does not tactically make sense to attribute power to others, nor does it makes sense to attribute lack of power to others, as this makes it more difficult for Warriors to act freely and without impediment. If we have preconceived notions of others, we do not act with immediacy within the context of the imperative of each particular moment. We may be stifled by our awe of others, or we may be bored by some sense of inferiority we may attribute to them. Both positions are dangerous!<br />Furthermore, a Warrior as wise enough to know that whatever he is thinking at that moment about the other is merely his own prescription anyway, and has nothing to do with the Truth (whatever that might be). He knows that his attribution of power (or lack thereof) to the other in that moment is not founded in anything absolute. <br />Therefore, he is left with no option but to simply act with presence, alertness, compassion and an open heart!<br />“… the backbone of a warrior-traveler is humbleness and efficiency, acting without expecting anything and withstanding anything that lies ahead of him.”<br />To expect the future to unfold in a predetermined way is dangerous, as it creates the conditions necessary for failure, and causes us to take ourselves too seriously. How can we truly expect Spirit to take us so seriously that it would place our wishes ahead of others’? Are we so foolish as to expect particular outcomes? Do we not know that life, energy and Spirit are far more all encompassing that we could ever hope to understand, and to expect anything with certainty is a fools game!<br />The Warrior is not so foolish; he simply walks a path with his mind fully alert and attentive. This is what enables him to respond as a Warrior should whenever it is necessary.<br />“To seek the perfection of the warrior’s spirit is the only task worthy of our manhood.”<br />The Warrior understands that there is very little over which he has control. This is the respect in which a Warrior is very humble. He is thankful for being alive and for the opportunity to be impeccable, and this is what he must focus his Unbending Intent upon.’<br />“… You can spur yourself beyond your limits if you are in the proper mood. A warrior makes his own mood… Fear got you into the mood or a warrior, but now that you know about it, anything can serve to get you into it.”<br />As warriors learn their craft, they become able to summon the particular emotional states that are required in order to contend with what they are presented. They are not at the mercy of their moods, but are in fact the authour of those moods themselves.<br />A Warrior chooses…<br /> “A warrior could be injured but not offended… For a warrior there is nothing offensive about the acts of his fellow men as long as he himself is acting within the proper mood.<br />A warrior sees things are they truly are, therefore is never offended by the actions of others. He sees others as hunters even if they do not see themselves as such. Hunters must hunt, and that is perfectly acceptable. <br />“To achieve the mood of the warrior is not a simple matter. It is a revolution. To regard the lion and the water rats and our fellow men as equals is a magnificent act of the warrior’s spirit. It takes power to do that.”<br />“A warrior knows that he is only a man. His only regret is that his life is so short that he can’t grab onto all the things that he would like to. But for him, this is not an issue; it’s only a pity.”<br />“The warrior wants it all, but needs nothing except to be a warrior”<br />The spirit of the warrior is to conquer, but he does so without attachment to the outcome of events. A warrior acts and moves forward, but does not define himself by the outcome of the actions. A warrior simply acts in the moment.<br />“Feeling important makes one heavy, clumsy and vain. To be a warrior one needs to be light and fluid.”<br />Fluidity: impermanence, indefinable, mysterious, <br />“An average man is too concerned with liking people or with being liked himself. A warrior likes., that’s all. He likes whatever or whomever he wants, for the hell of it.”<br />Within this revealed the fact that the warrior does not define himself in relation to a mirror presented by the outside world. The warrior is not concerned with the expectations or response that is presented to him by others. Nor is he particularly concerned with his perception or attribution of quality to others or other things. The warrior understands that he must be dispassionate, observant and centred. Furthermore, he understands that it does not behoove him to be particularly concerned by what his feelings, and emotions are at that moment. <br />The warrior is an independent agent, governed by his own rules of conduct that cannot be attributed to any defined moral constitution.<br />Compassion<br />Fear<br />“And thus he has stumbled upon the first of his natural enemies: Fear. A terrible enemy, treacherous and difficult to overcome. It remains concealed at every turn of the way, prowling and waiting. And if the man, terrified in its presence, runs away, his enemy will have put an end to his quest.”<br />“The answer is very simple. He must not run away. He must not defy his fear, and in spite of it he must take the next step in learning, and the next, and the next. He must be fully afraid and he must not stop. And a moment will come when his first enemy retreats. The man begins to feel sure of himself. His intent becomes stronger. Learning is no longer a terrifying task.’<br />In the numerous works of Carlos Castaneda, fear is not a topic that is discussed extensively. In my view this is not because it is not an extremely central notion, only that it is self evident that, as a warrior one must confront fear. The suggestion is not that we should somehow arrive at some point in life where we are no longer fearful, only that we must continue to walk head first towards our fear.<br />The other theme, as revealed above, is the fact that the we address fear through the accumulation of knowledge. Knowledge both of ourselves as well as all that is possible to know.<br />The Path to Spirit is through knowledge.<br />Intellectual Authenticity<br />The warrior does not concern himself with the opinions and perceptions of others since the question of truth is meaningless. All that matters is that these are the opinions of others. If they are the same as his opinions that is fine; if they are not the same as his opinions that is also fine.<br />All that is of concern to a warrior is that he understands the implications of his perceptions as they relate to the Path that he is on, and his ability to be impeccable.<br />This is not arrogance, since he knows that he is just as likely to be wrong as right. He also knows that it is possible that they are both right or both wrong as what is right for him is not necessarily not right for someone else.<br />This knowledge is comforting, as it causes him to have perspective and to give greater strength and credence to his own thoughts. <br />We are all connected to Spirit, and our unique form of access to Spirit is second to no one!<br />This is what gives a humble warrior unique strength!<br />Patience<br />Patience is the mark of the warrior, as it reflects both his humility as well the fact that he is aware of the fact that he has no control over how Spirit will unfold. His humility is reflected in the fact that he implicitly acknowledges that it is not He that determines when things should happen. <br />Patience requires the Warrior to subordinate himself to the wishes of Spirit, and to acquiesce peacefully.<br />Physical Energy<br />Lack Of Self Importance<br />“His recommendation was that I should not have remorse for anything I had done, because to isolate ones acts as being mean, or ugly, or evil was to place an unwarranted importance on self.”<br />For the warrior, placing excessive importance on the self is one of the major obstacles to the accumulation of power and knowledge. The fact that we are important in our own minds, forces us to cling to defined notions of ourselves, and does not provide us with the humility that is necessary to conduct battle in certain circumstances. <br />“As long as you feel that you are the most important thing in the world, you cannot really appreciate the world around you. You are like a horse with blinders, all you see is yourself apart from everything else.”<br />The Warrior does not see himself as important in the sense that he is different from others. Therefore, his actions are no more or less important than those of others. What is important is only that he act with impeccability as a Warrior. <br />“You are so damn important that you can afford to leave if things don’t go your way. I suppose you think that shows you have character. That’s nonsense! You’re weak, and conceited.”<br />Death<br />“A warrior thinks of death when things become unclear. The idea of death is the only thing that tempers our spirit.”<br />Against the backdrop of death, we are presented with the urgency of the moment as well as a sense of perspective relating to the triviality of much of which we concern ourselves.<br />“Death is the only wise adviser that we have. Whenever you feel, as you always do, that everything is going wrong and you’re about to be annihiliated, turn to your death and ask if that is so. Your death will tell you that you’re wrong; that nothing really matters outside its touch. Your death will tell you, ‘I haven’t touched you yet’”<br />“In view of my impending death, my fears and annoyance were nonsense.”<br /> “In an world where death is the hunter, my friend, there is not time for regrets or doubts. There is only time for decisions.”<br />For the Warrior, time is of the essence since Death is imminent. For the Warrior, everything is trivial in the face of death. One must not waste any time. One must live an impeccable life, continually focusing on the Path To Knowledge.<br />Action<br />“The change I am talking about never takes place by degrees: it happens suddenly.<br />The decision to walk the path as a warrior is a sudden one. On that day you realize that you have no option whatsoever but to walk a path towards knowledge. On this day, you realize that you are losing the battle with yourself, and that the only way to move forward is to learn how to fight, and how to access that which one needs to fight for.<br />“People hardly ever realize that we can cut anything from our lives, any time, just like that.”<br />The Warrior is not defined by the relationships he keeps, the activities he participates in, the work that he does, or anything else external to himself. The Warrior is defined only by the extent to which he is an impeccable Warrior.<br />“When a man decides to do something he must go all the way… but he must take responsibility for what he does. No matter what he does, he must know first why he is doing it, and then he must proceed with his actions without having doubts or remorse about them.”<br />It is a characteristic of a warrior that he is not half hearted in his efforts. Whatever challenge he takes on, he abandons himself in thoroughly. The choice as to what to do, and how to do it are arrived after careful examination: an exercise in stalking both oneself as well as ones circumstances.<br />The Path<br />‘Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore, a warrior must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if he feels that he should not follow it, he must not stay with it under any conditions. His decision to keep on that path or to leave it must be free of fear or ambition. He must look at every path closely and deliberately. There is a question that a warrior has to ask, mandatorily: Does this path have a heart?<br />“All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. However, a path without heart is never enjoyable.”<br />“To be a warrior is not a simple matter of wishing to be one. It is rather and endless struggle that will go on to the very last moment of our lives. Nobody is born a warrior, in exactly the same way that nobody is born an average man. We make ourselves into one or the other.<br />The Breaking Point<br />“The condition of sorcerers is that sadness, for them, is abstract. It doesn’t come from coveting or lack of something, or from self-importance. It doesn’t come from me. It comes from Spirit.”<br />“Mental breakdowns are for persons who indulge in themselves. Sorcerers are not persons. What I mean is that at a given moment the continuity of their lives has to break in order for inner silence to set in and become an active part of their structures.”<br />“The important issue is to arrive at a breaking point, in whatever way, and that’s exactly what you have done. Inner silence is becoming real for you.”<br />Well Being<br />“In a dramatic tone Don Juan stated that well-being was a condition one had to groom, a condition one had to become acquainted with in order to seek it.”<br />“…he said that the only thing I knew how to seek was a sense of disorientation, ill-being and confusion. He laughed mockingly and assured me that that in order to accomplish the feat of making myself miserable I had to work in a most intense fashion, and that it was absurd I had never realized I could work just the same in making myself complete and strong.”<br />“The trick is what one emphasizes… We either make ourselves miserable, or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same.”<br />“To be angry at people means that one considers their acts to be important. It is imperative to cease to feel that way. The acts of men cannot be important enough to offset our only viable alternative: our unchangeable encounter with Spirit.”<br />Discipline<br />“The only alternative left for mankind is discipline. Discipline is the only deterrent. But by discipline I don’t mean harsh routines… Sorcerers understand discipline as the capacity to face with serenity odds that are not included in our expectations. For the warrior discipline is an art: the art of facing Spirit without flinching, not because they are strong and tough but because they are filled with awe.”<br />Discipline is essential for a Warrior, for without it he cannot hunt as he will not have the patience to await his prey. In this context we must understand discipline as the necessary mental and emotional condition that allows us to be impeccable from moment to moment. Therefore, it is only with absolute discipline that we can truly act Impeccably. If we are not disciplined, we are subject to momentary indulgence and distraction and cannot maintain our focus or our Intent. <br />It is important to understand that discipline for a warrior is not discipline in the traditional sense. It is not marked by the absolute necessity to do particular actions at particular times. Discipline is not defined by actions as much as it is designed by the quality of our attention and the state of our mind. To the extent that we are mentally and emotionally disciplined, we have the capacity to contend with the inevitable occurrences with which we are presented. <br />It is the ability to maintain our equilibrium that is emphasized in this passage, it is not the fact that we can necessarily do this or that systematically for sustained periods of time, but the fact that we can do what is necessary when faced with circumstances that might cause us to deviate unnecessarily. It is the ability to choose what we do that is the mark of the discipline of a warrior..<br />Control/Abandon<br />“A controlled outburst and a controlled quietness were the mark of the warrior.”<br />“Self pity doesn’t jibe with power… The mood of a warrior calls for control over himself and at the same time it calls for abandoning himself.”<br />“A warrior, on the other hand, is a hunter, He calculates everything. That’s control. But once his calculations are over, he acts. He lets go. That’s abandon. A warrior is not a leaf at the mercy of thy wind. No one can push him; no one can make him do things against himself or against his better judgment. A warrior is tuned to survive, and he survives in the best of all possible fashions.”<br />The warrior sits at the cusp between control and abandon! Think about this. What does this truly mean? The warrior must balance reflective understanding and analysis: the hallmarks of control, with spontaneous expression: abandon. The Warrior is keenly attuned to opportunities to seize the moment, but he acts with caution and control. <br />Dispassion and Passion are both marks of the Warrior. An impeccable warrior rides this fine line with the same Unbending Intent of a tightrope walker; ready at a moments notice to cast himself forward if necessary.<br />Doing/Not Doing<br />“An average man cares that things are either true or false, but the warrior doesn’t. An average man proceeds in a specific way with things that he knows are true, and in a different way with things that he knows are not true. If things are said to be true, he acts and believes in what he does. But if things are said to be untrue, he doesn’t care to act, or he doesn’t believe in what he does. A warrior, on the other hand, acts in both instances. If things are said to be true, he would act in order to do doing. If things are said to be untrue, he still would act in order to do not-doing.”<br />“A warrior does not need to believe, because as long as he keeps on acting without believing he is not-doing.” <br />This idea emphasizes the notion that it is motion of being that is important. Furthermore doing is tied to some notion of identity and truth that itself has no grounds in objectivity. To the extent to which we are consumed by the constraints of identity then we are doing. To the extent to which we can let go from this and simply act, then we are not-doing.<br />The central idea here is the notion that changing ones path requires that we do things differently. Since it is likely that we Believed the things that we have been Doing, we likely won’t Believe the opposite - Not Doing. Since what we have Believed has led us to where we are today, yet we are in the process of making the changes that are necessary to becoming a warrior, it is clear that we must focus also on Not Doing! Doing has not been sufficient thus far. Since this is the case, there is no reason to get hung up on what one believes or doesn’t believe to be true. Not-Doing will modify ones Path, and provide an impetus to changes that will guide us towards Spirit.<br />If one is successful with the processes of not doing, there will be a complete release of the imperative towards the damaging forms of doing. This will open up the psychological space for the correct forms of doing. Therefore initially be satisfied with successful not-doing.<br />Not doing precedes new doings, therefore the inception of transformation is the implementation of not-doing. This must be the initial focus.<br />“From now on, and for a period of eight days, I want you to lie to yourself. Instead of telling yourself the truth, that you are ugly and rotten and inadequate, you will tell yourself that you are completely opposite, knowing that you are absolutely beyond hope.<br />But what would be the point of lying like that, Don Juan?<br />It may hook you to another doing and then you may realize that both doings are lies, unreal, and that to hinge yourself to either one is a waste of time, because the only thing that is real is the being in you that is going to die. To arrive at that being is the not-doing of the self.”<br />The primary assumption on the Way Of The Warrior is that what we perceive is not grounded in anything that can approximate the truth. What we believe is what has been communicated to us from the moment that we left the womb. From that day forward, we have been subject to the influences of our family, our community, our teachers etc. We have been taught how to see, what to see, and how to interpret what we see. There is nothing absolute about this. The feelings, ideas etc. that we attribute to sensory imagery are dependent upon the lens that we wear; a lens that has evolved over the course of our lives. It is the task of the Warrior to understand that this is simply a lens, and to reduce the significance of this lens.<br />“…’to not do what I knew how to do’ was the key to power.”<br />Hunting<br />“A hunter knows that he will lure game into his traps over and over again, so he doesn’t worry. To worry is to become accessible, unwittingly accessible. And once you worry you cling to anything out of desperation; and once you cling you are bound to get exhausted or to exhaust whoever or whatever you are clinging to.”<br />“One day I found out that if I wanted to be a hunter worthy of self-respect I had to change my life. I used to whine and complain a great deal. I had good reasons to feel shortchanged. I am an Indian and Indians are treated like dogs. There was nothing I could do to remedy that, so I was left with my sorrow. But then my good fortune spared me and someone taught me to hunt. And I realized that the way I lived was not worth living… so I changed it.”<br />“To be a hunter is not jus to trap game… A hunter that is worth his salt does not catch game because he sets traps, or because he knows the routines of his prey, but because he himself has no routines. This is his advantage. He is not all like the animals he is after, fixed by heavy routines and predictable quirks; he is free, fluid, unpredictable.”<br />“There’s no plan when it comes to hunting power. Hunting power or hunting game is the same. A hunter hunts whatever presents itself to him. Thus he must always be in a state of readiness.”<br />“Hunting power is a very strange affair… There is no way to plan it ahead of time. That’s what’s exciting about it. A warrior proceeds as if he had a plan though, because he trusts his personal power. He knows for a fact that it will make him act in the most appropriate fashion.”<br />“Hunters will always hunt”<br />Stalking<br />Inaccessibility<br />“Therein lies the secret of great hunters. To be available and unavailable at the precise turn of the road.”<br />“You must learn to become deliberately available and unavailable. As your life goes now, you are unwittingly available at all times.”<br />“At one time in my life I, like you, made myself available over and over again until there was nothing of me left for anything except perhaps crying. And that I did, just like yourself”<br />“To be inaccessible means that you touch the world around you sparingly.”<br />“To be unavailable means that you deliberately avoid exhausting yourself and others. It means that you are not hungry and desperate, like the poor bastard that feels that he will never eat again and devours all the food he can…”<br />“He is inaccessible because he’s not squeezing his world out of shape. He taps it lightly, stays for as long as he needs to, and then swiftly moves away leaving hardly a mark.”<br />Stalking<br />The Nagual<br />“The most accurate statement about what a nagual is, which he voiced the day I found him, was that a nagual is empty, and that emptiness doesn’t reflect the world, but reflects Spirit.<br />Nothing could have been more true than this in reference to don Juan Matus. His emptiness reflected Spirit. There was no boisterousness on his part, or assertions about the self. There was not a speck of a need to have either grievances or remorse. His was the emptiness of the warrior-traveler, seasoned to the point where he doesn’t take anything for granted. A warrior-traveler who doesn’t underestimate or overestimate anything. A quiet, disciplined fighter whose elegance is so extreme that no one, no matter how hard they to look, will ever find the seam where all that complexity comes together.”<br />The Tonal<br />Unbending Intent<br />Very simply, to be a Warrior requires unbending Intent. Intent is a quality that is discussed in different ways within various spiritual contexts. In the context of the Way Of The Warrior, we can understand Intent as a requirement for the internal strength and discipline that is required in order to walk a Path With Heart towards Spirit. If one does not have Intent, we will succumb to various forms of indulgence.<br />Indulgence<br />In order to become a Warrior, it is necessary to refrain from excessive indulgence. One must lead a life that is “tight”.<br />Truth<br />Knowledge<br />“It doesn’t make any difference how good a reader you are, and how many wonderful books you can read. What’s important is that you have the discipline to read what you don’t want to read. The crux of the sorcerer’s exercise of going to school is in what you refuse, not in what you accept.”<br />Challenge<br />“Warrior-travelers don’t complain. They take everything that Spirit hands them as a challenge. A challenge is a challenge. It isn’t personal. It cannot be taken as a curse or a blessing. A warrior-traveler either wins the challenge or the challenge demolishes him. It’s more exciting to win, so win!”<br />“It is not the people around you who are at fault. They cannot help themselves. The fault is with you, because you can help yourself, but you are bent on judging them, at a deep level of silence. Any idiot can judge. If you judge them, you will only get the worst out of them. All of us human beings are prisoners, and it is that prison that makes us act in such a miserable way. Your challenge is to take people as they are! Leave people alone!<br />Fear<br />Will<br />Stopping The World<br />“…once you know what it is like to ‘stop the world’, you realize that there is a reason for it. You see, one of the arts of the warrior is to collapse the world for a specific reason and then restore it again in order to keep on living.”<br />“There are no diseases… There is only indulging.”<br />“What stopped inside you yesterday was what people have been telling you the world is like. You see, people tell us from the time we are born that the world is such and such and so and so, and naturally we have no choice but to see the world they way people have been telling us it is.”<br />Seeing<br />Dreams<br />“What you call dreams are real for a warrior. You must understand hat a warrior is not a fool. A warrior is an immaculate hunter who hunts power; he’s not drunk, or crazed and he has neither the time nor the disposition to bluff, or to lie to himself, or to make the wrong move. The stakes are too high for that.”<br />“If I were ‘dreaming’ at night, my visions of the locale should be of nighttime. He said that what one experiences ‘dreaming’ has to be congruous with the time of day when ‘dreaming’ was taking place; otherwise the visions one might have were not ‘dreaming’ but ordinary dreams.”<br />Awareness<br />Equilibrium<br />Erasing Personal History/Eliminating Self<br />“… we only have two alternatives: we either take everything for sure and real, or we don’t. If we follow the first, we end up bored to death with ourselves and with the world. If we follow the second and erase personal history, we create a fog around us, a very exciting and mysterious state in which nobody knows where the rabbit will pop out, not even ourselves.<br />We are actively constrained by the relationships that we have evolved in our lives, the perceptions of those in our lives, and the perceptions of ourselves in relation to the expectations that others have in our lives. Erasing our personal history is the only way to provide us with a maximal level of freedom.<br />“… to ask questions about ones past is a bunch of crap.”<br />“It is best to erase all personal history… because that would make us free from the encumbering thoughts of other people.”<br />Path With Heart<br />Energy<br />A central tenet in The Way Of The Warrior is the notion that we are all directly connected through some form of universal energy. It is suggested that when one is able to See, he can directly apprehend the flow of energy that connects all beings in the world. Due to the work of Einstein and subsequent physicists, the interchangeability of matter and energy is not something that we can question. <br />If one is able to make the leap that there is an intelligence that transcends what we are able to apprehend through our own cognitive capacity, it is not difficult to come to the conclusion that this flow of energy exists.<br />The Earth/World<br />As distinct from other spiritual traditions, the Way Of The Warrior is a tradition that strongly emphasizes the importance of Earth. This is reflected in the fact that accessing Spirit, in some cases, occurs through, and with the assistance of, plants, birds, animals etc. In fact the orientation that is presented does not deify man at the expense of the Earth, Since we are all some manifestation of Spirit, and a journey back to Spirit, there is no preferred position on this path.<br />What is interesting to note is the fact that, our world presents us with ample evidence that the deification of Man, and the subordination of the Earth, is a frame of reference that has created the conditions for many of the global ills with which we are currently faced.<br />Practical Applications Of The Way Of The Warrior In Everyday Life<br />The Way Of The Warrior is a Path that is defined by the Warrior’s relationship with Spirit. As a result, the Warrior must cultivate a relationship with Spirit. This relationship with Spirit will be unique in the same sense that our relationships with others are all unique. <br />Take Action<br />“A warrior lives by acting, not by thinking about acting, nor by thinking about what he will think when has finished acting.”<br />A warrior must invest a certain amount of time in determining which actions must be taken, but also understands that the first priority is to take action as a warrior. This is to say that the expectation of absolute clarity of outcomes is beyond the scope of our knowledge, therefore the warrior must utilize a certain amount of intuition and understand that as long as he acts as a warrior, his path will reveal itself if he continues to walk.<br />Invest In Yourself<br />Discipline/Habits<br />Getting Closer To Earth<br />If you have lived your life in the city, and have felt disconnected with nature, take the opportunity to change this pattern. Our connection with Spirit cannot be independent of our connection with the world as they are all expressions of Spirit.<br />The “behavioural patterns” of the Earth as not independent of our activities. The most obvious example of this is what is currently happening to the world as a result of global warming. The behaviour of humans is having a direct impact on the behaviour of the earth, which in turn will have a direct impact on us.<br />Take the time to get to know Earth, to listen to what he has to say…<br />Physical Health<br />A warrior must be conscious of his own strength, and therefore must be attentive to the needs of his body. He must ensure that he has a clear focus on his physical health and fitness, as well as his diet. These areas of his life must represent the foundation upon which the pillars of his life are erected.<br />The implicit assumption is also that the Warrior does not hurt himself through excessive indulgence in drugs, alcohol etc.<br />“Don Juan stood up and stretched his arms and back. He suggested that I do the same. He said that it was a good practice to stretch the entire body after sleeping, sitting or walking.”<br />Places Of Power<br />In our journey into nature, we must locate places that we can claim as our own. As we wander through nature and explore, we must maintain a heightened awareness for places in which we feel comfortable and strong. These are places that the Earth has reserved for us. These places we can call our own, and return to them from time to time in order to store and restore our Power.<br />“… I had found out that… in the world there were good and bad spots for me… I had also found out the specific colors associated with them.”<br />Long Walks<br />Pushing Your Boundaries/Combating Fear<br />The psyche of a warrior is not constrained by fear. The warrior knows that he will die, and in that way we are all in the same boat. Once we truly realize this, there is no reason to fear anything.<br />Expecting More From Oneself<br />Further Thoughts<br />The distinction between Personal Power and Self Importance<br />Personal power is a purely personal/internal state of being, therefore refers strictly to our own self perception and cognitive state. Self importance refers to our awareness of the cognition/awareness of others. This is to say that we are personally powerful because we have acted impeccably, and therefore are in a state of well being. It is immaterial what the perception of others is in relation to our actions.<br />On the other hand, we are acting from the standpoint of Self Importance when we attach our state of Well Being to the perceptions of others.<br />When understood this way, we see that it is possible for the same act to be conducted both with Personal Power as well as from the standpoint of Self Importance. The distinction lies in the impeccability of our actions, and the extent to which we act as a warrior. <br />When asked, the universe will give you what you need. This may or may not be what you want.<br />An example of this relates to those that may badly want to be in an loving relationship. If one is not ready, the universe cannot provide one with love.<br />The more impeccable your life, the more the universe will offer you.<br />Evidence Of Impeccability: States Of Consciousness<br />Balanced Energy<br />Absence of Emotional Pain<br />Alertness<br />Wakefulness<br />Evidence Of Impeccability: Actions and Processes<br />Discipline<br />Absence Of Indulgence<br />Active State Of Becoming<br />Evidence Of Everyday Life: States Of Consciousness<br />Fear<br />Restlessness<br />Compulsiveness<br />Boredom<br />Fatigue<br />Evidence Of Everyday Life: Actions and Processes<br />Energy depleting habits<br />Inappropriate expectations of others<br />Taking things personally<br />Becoming<br />Becoming is a state of consciousness that we achieve when Spirit flows freely through us. When we are in a state of Becoming, we are on the correct Path. This state is characterized by extreme awareness, a focus on the present, a enhanced state of creativity. In fact, it is the most immediate connection with God, and is the state to which we should most aspire. During this state, time stands still as our destiny unfolds.<br />It is in this state that painters pain, writers write, composers compose etc. This is the state that athletes call the zone; a state that is congruent with Spirit.<br />Being<br />Being is a state of consciousness where the Internal Dialogue ceases, and we completely present. We are in a state of equilibrium with Spirit, and apprehend it's gentleness directly. Being and Becoming are related states, as it is possible to access one from the other. <br />The Deification Of Man<br />The representation of God as an embodiment of Man (or vice versa) can be considered to be the principle cause for much of the ill in this world as it can be considered the basis for the deification of Man and therefore the ego(self). Christianity can take full blame for this.<br />It is this conceptual framework that allows for the rationalization of the killing of animals, as well as the instrumentalization of the all that is not man. The deification of man provides the moral basis for man to manipulate his world in whatever manner he sees fit.<br />In the Way of the Warrior, Energy, Spirit, Intent etc., are what man aspires to evolve a connection with. In establishing this connection, man has no greater advantage than the fish, the dog or the cow. In fact, in some representations of Toltec lore, the blue deer is the representation of Spirit. <br />The Relationship Between Habits and Identity<br />A critical element on the path to becoming a warrior involves the transformation of ones behaviour patterns. In order to achieve Impeccability, a warrior must be absolutely precise and accurate with respect to ones actions. It is not possible to waste any energy whatsoever. Therefore, the first step is the elimination of bad habits. This may include, smoking, excessive drinking, gambling, sleeping etc. Whatever they may be, they are a cause for depletion in ones energy resources and must be eliminated.<br />How then can we go about this? Is there some way that we can observe the problem in order to come to conclusions that can be of assistance to us? Is sheer force of will the only thing that we have at our disposal?<br />Presuming that our path towards Impeccability carries with it a fine tuning of our actions, we can then logically conclude that the adjustment that we are making in our actions is congruent with the transformation of our identity towards that of a warrior. It this is the case, the next logical implication is that the habits that currently define our behaviour somehow relate to our current identity, and the extent to which we have bad habits is related to a lack of certainty as to what our identity is.<br />The practical reality is that those that decide to pursue spiritual transformation, typically do so as a result of a realization that there is something missing. It would be wonderful if all human beings pursued a path towards a greater level of purity, but this is simply not the case. Therefore, from a purely practical perspective, it is reasonable to say that the basis for the arduous journey towards becoming a warrior is fueled by a desire to transform oneself: to change ones identity.<br />Therefore, we see that habits are related to identity and bad habits are related to a lack of a clear sense of identity.<br />The elimination of bad habits is not simply positive in the sense that quitting smoking will reduce your chance of getting lung cancer, it will actually help you to become someone else! Hopefully a Warrior!<br />In the Toltec tradition this process unfolds as energy is conserved through the transformation of habits, and eventually one is able to move ones assemblage point, thereby modifying our perception of ourselves and the world and becoming someone else!<br />Love and Energy<br />If we understand that the universe consists of the interrelation of energy, and that power is related to the accumulation of energy, we can postulate that love is related to the creation of energy. <br />Therefore, when two people are in love, we can assume that individual energy levels (power) increases, and there is power that is created by their duality. This postulation has its basis in practical life and is evident to anyone that has been in love. When one is in love, one is in a state of happiness that is clearly more expansive than the state of happiness that preceded it. Furthermore, the new unit has been created, and this unit potentially has power. For example, the new couple exerts a certain influence over their in-laws that likely did not exist previously.<br />If we extend this idea, we can also conclude then that there must be a certain “resonance” or similarity in “frequencies” between those that are in love. It is a congruence of energy that stands distinct from consciousness. Those with whom we have the possibility of falling in love with are those with whom we have some resonance with.<br />Energy And Happiness<br />Our own personal energy can be envisioned as a lightbulb. The lightbulb is on when electricity is flowing through it. Similarly, we are at our most powerful, when spirit if flowing through us freely – when we are an expression of Spirit. Just as a lightbulb will not burn brightly if the filament is damaged, Spirit will not flow through us properly if we are “damaged” in any way.<br />Energy will not flow properly within our bodies if there are certain blockages. These blockages need to be resolved in order for Spirit to flow properly through us.<br />If Energy is not flowing through our bodies properly, we will experience fluctuations in our energy field. In certain instances we will feel surges of energy as Spirit flows through us, and in other instances we will feel very depleted.<br />These surges will be dependent upon circumstance, as we are not receiving energy properly from Spirit. For example, we may feel a surge of energy and power after delivering an effective presentation to colleagues, but this may be very short lived as soon as the energy from that particular situation has stopped. Therefore, after we leave the meeting and go home, we may feel completely differently.<br />If we think of energy in these terms, it becomes clear that happiness can be understood as the result of a balanced form of energy, and it is this balance that facilitates resonance with another. <br />This is intuitively obvious and has some basis in science in the sense that the more irregular and inconsistent ones energy patterns are, the more difficult it is to establish any kind of congruence with another. It is almost as though there is no frequency; just random energy fluctuations. <br />Balanced Energy and Happiness<br />The energy of our beings comes to us in only one way: directly from Spirit. However, whether or not we can access this energy is dependent upon some form of resonance. We must be attuned to Spirit at all times in order to receive energy from Spirit. We must be receptive to Spirit equally at all times. Imbalance is created when there are certain circumstances or conditions in life in which one is more likely to be receptive to flows of energy. If this is the case, we will experience periods of well being followed by periods of discontent.<br />This inconsistency is precisely what separates states of well being, bliss, euphoria etc. from a state of happiness. In fact inherent in the definition of happiness is that there be balance and consistency. This is what separates it from moments that are merely positive emotions. Happiness carries with it a more spiritual connotation – something more than simply a feeling. Drugs, sex or specific acts can generate feelings, but happiness is a sustained state of being.<br />The Ability To Love<br />Requires personal energy to be congruent<br />The Spiritual Malaise Of Modernity<br />The primary problems of modernity are: <br />That the foundations of modern culture are disconnected from Spirit. <br />Emphasis on Abstraction and Rationality: impediments to immediacy<br />Emphasis on Mediated Interaction: impediment to immediacy<br />God In Man’s Image<br />The Importance Of Immediacy<br />Human salvation will flow from Love and Respect for Everything. This includes all sentient beings as well as the earth that is the giver of life to all sentient beings. We cannot Love and Respect any subset of the above as this becomes a contradiction in terms. For example, to say that it is satisfactory to love only Man, is to presume that we do not leave to love the earth. Since it is the earth that provides us with food and water, we are not truly Loving and Respecting Man, if we do not Love and Respect Earth. We are simply shooting ourselves in the foot, and this is obviously foolish. Therefore we see that the love and respect for Everything is not just an arbitrary statement that provides some initial grounding for a spiritual paradigm, it is a strategic and tactical requirement for the survival of the species. If we do Love and Respect Everything, we will eventually kill ourselves. This is simply a statement of fact.<br />Love and Respect have the following requirements: Knowledge and Trust. We cannot love and respect that which we do not know and trust. Ask yourself, in very simple terms. Would I love my wife, girlfriend or family if I did not know and trust them? Love requires safety. We must believe that our love will not be the basis for our Death. We will not, nor should we, walk knowingly towards death. <br />Knowledge and Trust flow from Immediacy. We must be able to touch and feel that which we love. We must be able utilize our senses, feel the vibrations, smell the perfume, here the heartbeat, feel the force of the water etc. We must be able to Be with that which we love.<br />Therefore, we cannot emphasize too strongly the importance of immediacy in our lives. When we are devoid of direct experience, we cannot know anything and therefore we cannot form the bonds and connections that will sustain our Spirit. <br />Lack of Immediacy becomes the grounds for lack of clarity, deception and confusion and this is dangerous.<br />Religion Versus a Connection With Spirit<br />In order for this idea to be properly understood, it is important that there be a clear distinction between organized religion and a true connection to spirit. The contention is not that the powerful religions of the world do not command vast numbers of people, nor that they are necessarily in any state of substantial decline, but that they have lost their true connection to Spirit. This is assuming they ever had a true connection to Spirit.<br />Spirit will find us when the time is right<br />Identity And Spirit<br />The fact of the matter is that we can choose (either consciously or sub consciously) to walk a path without any attention to the voice of spirit. This path may be adequate or it may not.<br />If we think of ourselves as inextricably linked to this world as we are all a part of the larger flow of energy, we can reasonably conclude that our perception of ourselves is also linked to this flow of energy (the location of the Assemblage Point). If this is the case, and this flow of energy lacks resonance with ones own personal energy, then we can postulate that ones Identity is not properly aligned with Spirit.<br />Therefore, we construct our own identities, but resonance with Spirit is the most harmonious option. This is also what provides for balanced energy flow and happiness as well.<br />Hardship And The Warrior Spirit<br />When one looks at ones life, there are likely many things for which we may be able to feel sorry. However, this is not becoming of a warrior. First of all, self pity is merely an indulgence that is absolutely not worthy of a warrior. More importantly, without hardship, we may never have been forced to walk the path of the warrior. If things had been too easy, we may simply have grown accustomed to our humdrum routines, and the context and expectations of every day life. With hardship, however comes additional struggle; a struggle to overcome what has been presented. It is only through the identification of the need for this path that a warrior can truly make the connection with Spirit that he seeks. For this a warrior must be grateful!<br />Can The Warrior have a sense of Personal Destiny?<br />Only in the sense that his destiny is an expression of Spirit in some form. The warrior does not entertain defined notions of the outcome of his life, as this would reflect self importance. A warrior knows that the path to knowledge and power is the path that he walks towards Spirit. There is no other destiny, nor would he want any other one.<br />It unfolds as he moves forward impeccably.<br />Consciousness and Boredom<br />Boredom is a peculiar characteristic of consciousness that wants consciousness itself to be directed elsewhere. When we are bored, the present is not sufficient. For whatever reason, the present moment does not provide consciousness with sufficient stimuli. Consciousness is not properly directed or focused. <br />This can also be understood as the fact that, during the state of boredom, Energy is not flowing through one properly. Somehow, congruence with Spirit has been lost, and we begin to feel depleted. This is why, at that moment we seek to transport ourselves elsewhere in order to somehow revitalize our flow of energy and to feel interested and active once again.<br />Consciousness and Unhappiness<br />To be unhappy is not just to want ones state of consciousness to change, to want it to be directed elsewhere, or to be stimulated by something else. In contrast to boredom, unhappiness reflects the fact that consciousness directed inwards is not at ease.<br />However, it should be noted that there is a very fine line between boredom and unhappiness, and that both reflect the need to change the focus of consciousness.<br />The “Emotion” Trap<br />On the surface it would appear that it is a positive thing to be emotional. That is conventional wisdom, and in many ways I would agree with this, however things are not a simple as they may appear. We all know that to be emotional is the antithesis of the socio path, for whom nothing stimulates an emotional response. Since most dark characters are sociopaths, we would all like to think that it is better to be emotional. Since there is no definitive gradation to define who is emotional and who isn’t, we can all safely consider ourselves to be emotional.<br />The problem results from the fact that those that are emotional, respond impulsively to what we FEEL. We feel things strongly in our beings and this spurs us one way or another irrespective of the correctness of the actions that are generated. Very soon we become addicted to these feelings. This addiction is no different from the feelings generated from the ingestion of a drug. In fact, all that happens when we take drugs is that we ingest a chemical of some sort. Similarly, those that are emotional experience the release of certain chemicals in response to specific stimuli.<br />Just as the excessive ingestion of drugs results in the creation of negative habits and the repeating of patterns, the same thing happens to those that are excessively emotional. We respond to stimuli in a particular way, and therefore increasingly crave certain stimuli. Triggers for these stimuli can range from sex, to TV, cigarettes etc. Whatever it is, it can generate a stimulus based response.<br />Therefore, those that are emotional tend to be much more subject to compulsive behaviour and patterns that are difficult to break. The feelings that are generated when the bad habits are started, are feelings that we find difficult to disengage from.<br />The end result of this is that those of us that feel deeply can be grateful for the “compass of the heart” that is provided; the guidance that is provided by a very strong sense of what is right and wrong, and an aversion to creating pain in others. This is a wonderful quality that none of us would want any other way.<br />However, it does come with a price…<br />To be emotional is to know that Spirit knocks on your door regularly, and that your compass is aligned with Paths that have Heart. The challenge for the Warrior is to find the sobriety and strength necessary to walk this path.<br /> <br />Loneliness and Faith<br />Loneliness implies a sense that things would be better in the presence of another. This can be in the larger sense that one would like a life partner, or in the smaller, more temporal, sense that it would be nice if there were someone present to share ones time with right now. In reality, however, we are all alone in the face of Spirit, and therefore the concept of loneliness has no rational meaning. (not sure if this is true – I now believe that human connection is fundamental to survival)<br />Furthermore, if we are living our life as an impeccable warrior, and allowing our life to be the natural unfolding of Spirit as we Become, there is no sense in which things should be any different. We must acknowledge that the stability of our psyche and our peace is strictly our responsibility, and have faith that there is no other condition that would make this any better.<br />We can know that we are on the correct path if we are awake, have eliminated negative habits, and have incorporated positive habits.<br />Strengths and Weaknesses <br />It is important to try to strengthen your weaknesses, but it makes more sense to strengthen your strengths!!<br />In his humility, a warrior is governed by rationality. As a result, a warrior never attempts to be someone that he will be unable to become. Impeccable behaviour requires the efficient utilization of his energy, and therefore it cannot be consumed frivolously on pursuits that will be a waste of time. Ultimately it is all about survival, and survival requires the utilization of ones competitive advantage. A warrior therefore takes advantage of the areas of his life in which he is superior, but crafting and honing his skills. He accepts that those areas in which h