Tuesday night the Mindshifters group watched the first half of the lecture by Dr. Michael Ryce titled, The Circle of Life and How To Play It. The lecture describes two different patterns of observing, interpreting and responding to the events in one’s life. Following one path makes us Winners in life and following the other path makes us Losers. The key point at the beginning of the lecture is that in order to get where we want to be, we first need to know where we are. The list of traits, behaviors and response patterns for those who choose “the high road”, and those who choose “the low road”, offers a kind of a road map which we can use to determine exactly where we are, and what we need to change in order to get to where we want to be.
My impression of the central characteristic of those choosing “the high road”, is their ability to understand that they are creating their internal reality, and therefore if they are in pain in any way, they are in error and can therefore make a correction. The people choosing “the low road”, are essentially blaming others or their circumstances for anything in their life they don’t like, and they are busy either playing the role of “victim”, or the role of “hero”. These people believe that “If I am in pain, you did it to me!” Therefore they are always externalizing their problem and therefore looking for external solutions.
When people who are choosing “the high road” become uncomfortable or experience a negative emotion, they take this as an indication that they need to make a correction because they are somehow creating a false reality which is causing them pain or discomfort. These people welcome the information that comes to them from their discomfort because it offers them an opportunity to learn and grow. When people on “the low road” become uncomfortable or experience a negative emotion, they either deny it and suppress it, or blame it on someone or something outside of themselves. This reinforces their belief that they are powerless and that they are being victimized.
The discussion after the video led to many interesting areas. The area that stood out most for me was the idea of looking to someone else as being a “master” or a “guru”. It is common for those who are trying to improve their lives to study, read, listen to, or even “follow” a “master”, “teacher”, or “guru”. We discussed how this pattern creates a sense of “one-up” and “one-down”, or “better than” and “less than”. I mentioned that the teachings that have resonated most with me, are those in which it is understood that the only significant difference between any two people, is the degree to which each understands that “We are all the same!”.
We also discussed how the book of The Way of Mastery frequently mentions that “It takes one to know one.”, which means that I cannot recognize the truth taught by a great teacher unless that knowledge already resides somewhere in me. I suggested to the group that rather than talking about how someone else is such a great teacher or great master – it would be interesting to see how it feels to simply say, “What this person teaches, really resonates with me.” This leaves the space for recognition that we are all the same and that in order for me to be able to recognize Love, and Wisdom in another, it must already be within me. The work we are engaged in then is simply to continue to uncover, and dismantle, anything within my mind and energy system which is less than Love.
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love. Everything else is false.