April 22, 2004

(The identification of these tenets and their translation into words does not imply the perfect implementation thereof by me!)

A. Value of life
  1. All life is linked, one to another.

  2. Life is more than simple biological existence.

  3. Except through children, I cannot create life. Life is therefore unspeakably precious, and is never to be squandered.

  4. The preciousness of life is, however, squandered when it is clung to simply for its own sake. The nature of life implies death. There is a time for life, and there is a time for release.

B. Inherent to life
  1. Inherent to life is that there be obstacles. These exist simply by nature of there being differing perspectives.

  2. Such obstacles carry only such weight as they are granted by me. I can choose for them to be a learning opportunity, a recurring moment, an insurmountable wall, or even redefine my parameters so that they cease to exist.

  3. Inherent in the weight accorded an obstacle is the attachment accrued that obstacle and its associated context by me. The more value I place on "surmounting" a specific obstacle, the more power I grant it. The less attachment I have to the specific road by which an obstacle is to be overcome, the more likely I am to discover that other roads exist on which that obstacle may not exist at all - or that what I had thought a barrier is in fact the road itself.

C. Value and identity of self
  1. We are defined by our knowledge of self, and by actions and interactions taken within that knowledge.

  2. Our self is a conglomerate of our personal perception of self and how others see us.

  3. Some attempt to control that seeing by creating and projecting a specific image. Such projection only creates another layer of mask, which, ultimately, may be confused with self even by the person creating the mask.

  4. There is no division of self that I have not created for myself. I can choose to identify anger or fear as "problems" and struggle with them, but the danger exists that by so doing I am granting the anger or fear a power it did not originally have. The anger, the fear, is a part of myself, nothing less, nothing more.

  5. To accept non-division of self is to understand the source of division. If I am to go beyond the powerlessness of fear to accept it as a part of self, I must understand in what the fear is rooted. For fear to exist at all, it must be cored in a potential rather than an actual: I can only fear to lose something to which I am attached but which I have not yet lost - and if I cannot integrate the fear into self to step beyond the determined filtre it imposes, my continued powerlessness before my fear may well lead to the losing.

  6. To place value upon a thing is not synonymous with being attached to a thing. I value life, but if I am not willing to release it at the appropriate time, I myself have rendered it valueless and meaningless.

D. Interaction
  1. I cannot control the choices of another. Nor can my choices be controlled by another except insofar as I myself allow this.

  2. Since I cannot control the choices of another, I cannot define my personal state based upon another's actions or lack of action. "You" cannot make me happy. Only "I" can do that.

E. Choices and time
  1. Experience is the gestalt of event, circumstances, environment, and individual. To consider any of these in isolation is to reject the full experience.

  2. Each moment is eternal, its "now" reverberating infinitely into the past and into the future. Each moment is simultaneously singular and unique. To live the current moment as one would have wished to (re)live a previous moment is to reject its uniqueness.

  3. However, I count it necessary to know, to attempt to understand, and to accept what has been before, not to attempt to alter what has been (our memories are certainly malleable enough!), but to consciously take that awareness into the present so as not to repeat past missteps. We are eternal beings, woven into temporal webs. Our ancestors and our descendents are one with us. To sever history from the present is to exist without living.

  4. I similarly count it necessary to have an appreciation for the future: but not to define it as limited to a few possible paths, or to predict its inevitability based on a generalised personal "experience". Future is possibility! To accept all possibilities remains the very opposite of expectation of outcome: the first flings open, the second constrains and limits into what frequently becomes self-fulfilling prophesy. Thus awareness of future is a consideration, never a constraint.

  5. Fate is the force of the recreated past driving into the present. Destiny is the force of specific potentiality driving into the future. Both are negated simply by accepting the choices of the moment in and of itself.

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