Want to know what it feels like to be a warrior? Dive into the exersizes in this post and evaluate the experience: let thoughts and feelings come up freely after finishing the first question and repeat that evaluation after finishing answering the second question. Then look inside yourself and answer a third question: how do I want to live?
The root of the word courage is cor—the Latin word for heart. In one of its earliest forms, the word courage had a very different definition than it does today. Courage originally meant “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” Over time, this definition has changed, and, today, courage is more synonymous with being heroic. Heroics is important and we certainly need heroes, but I think we’ve lost touch with the idea that speaking honestly and openly about who we are, about what we’re feeling, and about our experiences (good and bad) is the definition of courage.
I asked a handful of people from the creative industry to send me questions that they would like to be answered by the participants of the 100 Day Warrior. Out of approximately 30 questions I selected 13 that seem to cover most of the curiosity of most followers. Sanne went first, Esther was the second to answer them, then came Tommy. But now hear what Arent’s experience has been so far.
Because, you see, the alarming fact is that any realization of depth carries a terrible burden: those who are allowed to see are simultaneously saddled with the obligation to communicate that vision in no uncertain terms: that is the bargain. You were allowed to see the truth under the agreement that you would communicate it to others (that is the ultimate meaning of the Bodhisattva vow). And therefore, if you have seen, you simply must speak out. Speak out with compassion, or speak out with angry wisdom, or speak out with skillful means, but speak out you must.
One of the photos I bought is the one above this post. According to the photographer the couple is still very much in love. The old man was proud to introduce the photographer to his girlfriend. He is in his nineties, his girl is 10 years older than him. I find the picture upsetting, touching and humbling. I hope to find the woman that I can share my life with and that we will never ever get enough of each other.
One of my major pitfalls is that I have a deep rooted feeling of not being good enough but insufficient and inadequate. I act this out by trying to improve myself all the time. I work out hard, eat healthy, meditate, read and write. I’m trying to overcompensate the painful gap that I feel, hoping I will be accepted if I just can be a better coach, trainer, friend, boyfriend, lover or son. I try hard in the hopes that I will see the image I have of myself reflected back at me.
Being a warrior means identifying your learning edge, accepting it, taking a deep breath and boldly stepping into the unknown terrain with nothing else to hold onto than a vague sense that this is the right thing to do. Your inner coward will come up with excuses, justifications, reasons and alternatives to not have to go there. This way he functions as an excellent guide: he will tell you precisely where you should not go. This is exactly where you should go. Counter-intuitive? Only from the coward’s perspective.
Today I was in a gloomy mood. I felt uncomfortable, dissatisfied and somewhat disheartened. As I was just cooking up a meal, feeling burdened by the idea that I still have to write a post even though it is quite late already and I have to work tomorrow, I decided to write about things that cheer me up. Just random stuff that comes up in the next 15 minutes. Here we go:
Today I came from a meeting in Utrecht and on my way back I was contemplating my next step in life. I accidentally saw some notes I made during a meeting with a like-minded soul some time ago. The notes were about intention and visualization. I was watching the daylight turning into soft and warm tones as the time of sunset approached. A peaceful silence came over me. I felt the courage and inspiration coming bubbling up to verbalize the next step of my vision. Although I am not sure what it is I feel that there is something ready to come out.
Many of us think that compassion is synonymous with being friendly and don’t see how their friendliness is motivated by fear. We believe that we can’t be “mean” or “rude” to others, even if this means supressing our own needs and feelings. We let our boundaries be violated because we like to be a good person so badly. In reality, true compassion has nothing to do with being nice and everything to do with doing the right thing for ourselves and others. And when your compassion is not completely honest, it is not compassion but a lie.