Tag Archives: paradigm

To Tell the Truth

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Bogus claims about new I Ching sciences remind me of the long-running TV game show, “To Tell the Truth.” In this format, three challengers are introduced to a celebrity panel, each claiming to be the featured guest. Impostors can lie and pretend to be the central character. Only the real one is sworn to tell the truth. Panelists are challenged to ask penetrating questions, see through deceptions, and correctly identify the truth teller.

In this game reality, the best liars are rewarded. But that’s not how it works in the real world. There’s nothing entertaining or ultimately rewarding about deceiving the public. Yet, at this stage of history, it’s nigh unto impossible for all but the most discriminating (in the positive sense) tell the difference between imitators and the “real deal.” Shameless parodies of wisdom traditions abound.

Hucksters out to make a quick fortune while basking in their 15-minutes of fame misrepresent both their intentions and abilities. The sure-fire get-rich formula of “spiritual” entrepreneurs is to tap into people’s deepest desires and fears. Associate your product with an accepted wisdom tradition to piggy-back on its credibility. Offer gullible marks whatever it is they want on the one hand, and guaranteed protection from the consequences of stupidity on the other.

In a crowded market place full of unscrupulous pretenders, how do messengers of substance and integrity stand out from the noisy crowd? Even screaming isn’t heard over the ruckus. Their only option is to play by the rules – quietly, persistently Tell the Truth.

In my last blog, I stood up to a Millennial I Ching pretender. But as soon was that posted, an even more outrageously upside-down New Age pitch came in via the website contact page. This one (again, no names) proposes to change the course of civilization by gathering statistical proof of a timeless, transpersonal “force” (for a donation, of course). Those who hurry can get a free game stone now, before they’re sold for a hefty price. All major credit cards accepted.

Sigh. Statistical methods associated with the prevailing empirical science method may appeal to “rational” intellectuals stuck on the material surface of the wheel. (See illustration below.) But quantifiable evidence is irrelevant to the middle and innermost levels of the Positive Paradigm of Change.

The first false premise is that the rational mind is sufficient to comprehend, analyze and “prove” with its puny methods the existence of the Universal Mind. How comical is that? It’s like a flea presuming to do the metaphorical elephant the favor of confirming its existence to other fleas. (The flea’s arguments make a difference to the elephant because . . . . ?)

Further false logic goes, “Since the source is infinitely powerful, and we as individuals partake of it, therefore we are equally infinitely powerful.” Wrong! (Boooo!) This is like a drop of water claiming equal partnership with the wave within which it rides.

Still more ridiculous is the assumption that we as individual drops of water can make the tidal waves of history change direction – as if puny humans had the superior wisdom and power to influence the forces of nature and Nature’s God.

As a reminder, here’s the Wheel of Change. It reinforces both the appropriate relationships amongst the levels and the value of linking them in a two-way, infinite loop. Each of the outer levels is an extension of and depends upon the deeper ones for its existence. Never the other way around.

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The value of the I Ching, correctly used, is to serve as the energy-level bridge that links reason on the outermost level with innermost ways of knowing – intuition and conscience.

A basic premise of New Age I Ching distortions is that superior humans, if they don’t like the current course of history, can just rewrite history, avoiding the consequences of past action. That is not positive change. The attempt is a delusional waste of precious time.

Today’s place in history is the cumulative consequence of thousands of years of poor choices. To continue an earlier thread, keep in mind the Old Testament prophet Daniel. He foresaw an end time followed by a new beginning. There is no short-cut from here to there that by-passes the tough part of the process he envisioned.

Those who intend to survive to partake of that new beginning would be far better off to heed what is written and align themselves with the tides of Titanic times, rather than resisting or presuming to circumvent them.

Here’s a hint and reminder of what is to come, with its reference to false paradigms (unsustainable foundations of civilization) as “feet of clay” from the King James version of The Book of Daniel:

2:28: But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets

and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.

Preparing now for inevitable changes to come is a personal choice and responsibility, accomplished first on the inside, one person at a time. The basic axioms and methods offered in the I Ching-compatible Positive Paradigm Handbook facilitate that powerful personal change. The purpose is to replace the unsustainable, corrupted foundation of false paradigms (feet of clay) with a complete and correct paradigm. Like childbirth, the process isn’t necessarily fun, but the outcome is worth it.

2:44. And in the days of these kings shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom

which shall never be destroyed . . it shall stand for ever.

Daniel’s vision of this basic truth was written long ago. (Daniel 2:45. . . The dream is certain; and the interpretation thereof sure.) He’s a central character who told the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but.

To Tell the Truth is the longest-running show in history. It’s not a game, however, nor is it for the faint of heart and spirit. But our very survival is at stake.

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A Fresh Start Is Urgently Necessary

I started to pick up here what was started about Millennials and future survival earlier, but recognized I need to back up a few paces. Coincidentally (though there is no such thing, of course) two interesting things happened. First, the internet was down all day. No emails. No tweets. Ahhhh. Quiet. An unexpected relief set in. Would Millennials experience this deprivation (even short-lived) the same way?

Yet, here I sit blogging, trusting things will be back to normal within a few hours. A troubling thought rumbled in the back of my mind. Has something thing terrible happened in Israel? Is this blackout preventing news from getting through? I pushed it aside. Paranoia? It served as a reminder, though, that this relatively comfortable lifestyle might not last forever. It’s a reminder of how precious time is.

The last paragraph of the earlier blog (see wp.me/p46Y5Z-cz) stopped short where I must begin here:

The only chance of winning — ultimately, surviving —

is to demand a new, clean, unmarked deck, one with all the cards.

In other words, make a fresh start based on an accurate, complete paradigm.

Rethinking Survival lists the elements of a Fresh Start in detail. Here are a few snippets.

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FRESH START

After facing up to the inescapable proof everywhere around us that our language and idea pools have been corrupted, what do we do about it? Extreme radical measures call for opposite and equal survival responses. Scrap everything. Back to the drawing board. Clear the decks. Empty the overflowing in-baskets and clutter on the mental desktop.

Religious leaders have abused the teachings, so atheists have been conned into rejecting the fundamentals of the timeless, perennial philosophy altogether. Human authorities have violated their responsibilities, so reactionaries have been conned into making the mistake of rejecting all authority on every level.

Let’s face it. Religious and secular institutions inevitably degenerate. They accumulate baggage over time and drift away from founders’ visions.

So from time to time in the repeating cycles of history, it becomes urgently necessary to sort out what’s worth holding on to and what not. Do a thorough cultural house cleaning. Right now, people everywhere are overdue for a major rethinking of their paradigms.

Start with the premise that we’ve been brainwashed. We’re ensnared in contradictory myths and misconceptions. So approach the work with humility and extreme caution. Accept the possibility that everything you thought you knew is wrong.

Initiate OPERATION RESCUE. One individual at a time, take back our most precious asset: our minds. Like tenacious truth-miners, sift through the mud to separate out nuggets of pure gold. Hold fast to truth. Fearlessly put the rest behind.

Go back to the drawing board. Wipe the slate clean. Start over with a fresh, unmarked deck. Rethink organizations by the standard of the Positive Paradigm. Start with the smallest unit of organization — yourself. Work with what’s possible. Be assured that every little bit helps. “One grain of rice can tip the scales.”

If this seems daunting, remember, the stakes. They couldn’t be higher: the survival versus extinction of all you love. Each contribution affects the whole. Everyone matters. As Einstein warned in “Ensuring the Future of Mankind”. . . “Each one of us would be at fault if the goal were not reached in time. There is the danger that everyone waits idly for others to act in his stead.”10

. . . Here are recommended positive attitudes for approaching OPERATION RESCUE:

ONE

Gird personal determination to win the inner war that matters most. Put pride and old attachments aside. Let the consequences of failing to rescue your mind along with the rewards for doing it motivate persistence.

TWO

Take nothing for granted. Appreciate what you have while you still have it. Remember: it took only nine seconds for one lunatic to blow John Fitzgerald Kennedy’s head away. It changed the world as his family and the world knew it. Two bullets was all it took to extinguish our best hope for the future of democracy and world peace.

THREE

Proceed with equal parts humility, courage and trust. Revisit the basic, important life questions carefully. Scrap the old answers. Shed the emotional baggage and prejudices we all carry from personal experience.

Be willing to look at the world and how one fits into it with fresh eyes. Attachments to familiar beliefs as well as obligations to teachers and family are irrelevant to the TRUTH. So are old animosities. Trust that if old answers were correct and personal loyalties valid, they’ll withstand the test of time.

FOUR

Focus on the values everyone everywhere undeniably have in common. Following Einstein’s example, learn how to “think like a genius:”12

The scientist or the artist takes two facts or experiences which we separate;

he finds in them a likeness which had not been seen before:

and he creates a unity by showing the likeness. . . .

All science is the search for unity in hidden likenesses.

FIVE

Focus on TRUTH. Give it the benefit of the doubt. If familiar expressions don’t work for you, dig deeper. Or try a better approach. But cleave to the life-sustaining essence which sincere practitioners of every faith have held in common from time immemorial. Communicate from that center. And build community from there.

Just as each atom has only one nucleus, in Positive Paradigm context there’s only one core at the center of creation. Logically, over time and in every circumstance, inspired teachings partake of it. If you delve deep enough into the teachings with a sincere heart, you’ll find the same universal source.

. . . Future generations depend on each of us to transcend our petty animal nature. They demand that we draw upon this inexhaustible resource of inner strength to keep the wheel of life together for their sake. In times of great calamities and sorrow, the truly great in spirit will rise to meet whatever challenges may come, sustained by the eternal center within.

SIX

Don’t get hung up on language. Don’t be confused by misdirecting spin. Stick to the facts. Don’t let double-speaking truth-twisters insult your intelligence. If you allow them to play on your worst fears, they’ll manipulate you into becoming your own worst enemy. Have a standard for knowing who’s who. If you refuse to be fooled by name-calling, empty labels can’t stick. Know friends from enemies by the fruits of their labors. Not by their whitewash excuses.

SEVEN

The Danger. Don’t let alien agents define who you are. . . . The hub at the center of life’s wheel can’t be equated with a political center. Quite the opposite. Remember the Karate Kid? Pick one side of the road or the other. Good or evil. Truth or spin. As Mr. Miagi warned, middle-of-the-roaders get “squished like grape.”

EIGHT

The Opportunity. Inherent in endings are opportunities for new beginnings. “After degeneration reaches critical mass, regeneration follows.”15

Just as invaders’ agents work to undermine humanity, modern-day sages are tenaciously working to expose and defeat their schemes. That’s why it’s imperative to cut across false boundaries. Connect with like-minded boundary-spanners wherever they are to be found. If they’re true to the common sense voice of conscience, they’re humanity’s best hope. Heed them. . .

But don’t just sit back, waiting for politicians to wake up. Follow Einstein’s advice. Don’t build another human institution, a conglomeration of internally conflicted governments. Instead, build an international community of like minds. The internet gives opportunities for connecting across limiting, artificial boundaries that Einstein would never have dreamed possible.

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Wow. That’s a lot. I started by staying two interesting things happened this morning. The first was the internet being down. The second? That’s where I’ll have to pick up next time.

Early Adapters Are Most Likely To Survive

With one exception, responses to recent blogs have been gratifying.

In response to “Therapists as Agents of Positive Change,” Brent Nichols, M.A., C.S.W., a Jungian Psychoanalyst located near Berlin, Germany, wrote, “Very nice piece. . . I very much appreciate your lovely thoughts about the Jungian therapeutic process.”

John Romig Johnson, Ph.D., NCPsyA., a Jungian Analyst at Body and Soul International near Charleston, South Carolina, wrote “Marvelous blog. I want to read them all when I get a chance.”

Candace Kleven, PhD., a Psychotherapist in the Jungian Tradition wrote from Redondo Beach, California, “Thank you Pat! I am looking forward to reading your blog and staying connected with your much needed work.”

In response to “Savvy Leaders Go with the Flow,” from Toronto, Canada, Frank Feather at StratEDGYInc. wrote “That is a wonderful and very sage article, Pat. . . . I fear for America. The paradoxes in its political and socio-economic way of life are astonishing and self-destructive. The so-called dream is in danger of becoming a nightmare. . . . Please keep writing, and thanks again for connecting. You are extremely wise.”

But, in balance, lest I get overly-impressed with myself, Brian Chernett, Founder and Chief Executive at ELLAFORUMS CIC in Harrow, U.K. responded, “Its interesting but a little Academic for me.”

Ouch. But, okay. This is an important turning point for me. It’s time find a new, more effective way to communicate. So this is for Brian.

I checked out ELLAFORUMS and learned that it’s a “leadership development programme specifically designed to inspire and develop the leaders of Social Enterprises and Charities.” I listened as Brian explained that ELLA stands for Experiential Leadership Learning Academy. Ah. His direct, interactive approach to leadership training explains, at least in part, his objection to a one-sided monologue.

But to be honest, there’s more. I read “Savvy Leaders” again, thinking how it must look from Brian’s view point. Sure enough. Though I swim like a golden fish in the lore of world scriptures, taking joy in linking the patterned echoes of truth that repeat throughout, to a reader without the background of my chosen path, allusions to Plato and the Old Testament, not to mention Lao Tze, are a stretch. [Understatement.]

So I’m challenging myself here to get straight to the point of “Savvy Leaders” without depending on the authority of unnecessary outside sources. The timing of this decision is critical because I’ve chosen from now on to focus my work towards Millennials (as well as the parents and grandparents who dearly wish them well).

Twenty-somethings swim like golden fish in computer technologies which I find as challenging as my academic waters are to them and their practical hands-on mentors. It’s my responsibility a boundary- spanner to reach out and bridge whatever gaps interfere with effective communication, be they professional or generational.

So here’s my point, straight up. History repeats itself in intricate but predictable cyclical patterns. To stay ahead of the curve, successful leaders depend for survival on timeless wisdom — both innate and educated.

The basic point of Rethinking Survival is that human survival will depend upon decisions based on a simple, complete and correct paradigm. Currently, world leaders operating on the basis of incomplete, extreme and dysfunctional paradigms are making decisions that endanger us all.

The way out of current madness must begin with restoring a complete and correct paradigm, one that is consistent with both the world’s great religions and with modern physics. I’ve presented it as the Positive Paradigm of Change and published two books, one an autobiographical and personal approach, the other a bare bones, practical user’s manual.

I’m advocating a Positive Paradigm shift, regarding it as urgent to rethink priorities and retrain our minds. Historically, power holders with a vested interest in the status quo met calls for change with fierce resistance. It takes a new generation, one for whom old solutions to challenging situations no longer work, to take up the banner of a more functional, hopeful paradigm.

This is why I dedicated Two Sides of a Coin to the Millennial Generation. Seemingly disinherited by their elders, they have little vested interest in protecting the dysfunctional paradigms that have brought us to the current mess we’re in. The Positive Paradigm of Change, a descendant of the Book of Change that remains true to the original, gives them the means to actualize the opportunity hidden in adversity. Namely, survivors must, albeit of necessity, fortify inner strengths and restore forgotten wisdom.

In 1975, I wrote an easy-to-read version of the timeless Chinese I Ching called The Common Sense Book of Change. In fact, it was written exactly to rescue the timeless essence from unnecessary baggage in a non-sexist, non-flowery form that readers of every age with basic language skills and an open heart could relate to.

I cannot speak highly enough of this treasure. This interactive book serves to connect sincere users with their deepest core. When I was dealing with issues which couldn’t be spoken, it was the best friend that got me through tough times. It was the therapist I couldn’t afford, but in some respects better.

It resonates in ways that seem almost magical, though the modern sciences of atomic physics, computer binary digital code, and DNA now give intriguing explanations as to why it works on a cellular or even atomic level. (Hint: It’s no accident that the universal Positive Paradigm model is reminiscent of the rings surrounding the atom’s nucleus as well as the planets revolving around our solar system’s sun.)

Once Millennials start connecting the dots and seeing the larger picture of how the Book of Change resonates with their own computer and game addictions — as well as the enormous implications — there’s a hope for the future. (To those of Christian background who resist its wisdom as if there were a conflict, let me assure you: There is none. Christ told us he existed before the world and will continue after. He presence permeates the field. The wisdom of all human times necessarily partakes of that essence.)

Jesus foresaw the times we’re now enduring. The Book of Change confirms what he foretold and gives those with an open mind the wisdom needed to navigate successfully through dangerous times. Regardless of naysayers who wish to believe otherwise, the world is currently at a nadir point in its history. We are already in the midst of what Old Avatar calls a Near Extinction Level Crisis (N.E.L.C). Recent events in the Near East, North Korea, and the former U.S.S.R, not to mention those closer to home on the U.S. Southern border are merely the visible tip of a vast iceberg.

Historically, at the critical mass of decline and chaos, visionary leaders equal to the times have come forward. They will surely arise from the amongst the Millennial Generation’s ranks as well. They may not have the material advantages earlier available to me. But there’s a trade off.

I’ve had the instructional blessings of international travel and a good education, as well as the luxury of a lifetime to turn knowledge and experience into wisdom. This is my legacy, handed over across the bridge of the generation gap. Millennials are the children and grandchildren I never had. The Positive Paradigm of Change is the sum of all I’ve learned, an inheritance now entrusted to their use, to pass on to their children in turn, if and when that time comes.

Bottom line: history is not a straight line. Those who live as if it were are in deep trouble. Those of vision, while living in today’s world, are quietly preparing for inevitable shocks waiting around the bend. They’re savvy enough to avoid calamity whenever possible, and when the inevitable must be faced, they’re ready meet it, adapt and survive as best they can.

The self-aware who sense and respond to the changes “blowing in the wind” are called “early adapters.” They, along with those who heed and follow them, are the most likely to survive whatever challenges may come.

All Best!

Know When to Mistrust Inner Voices

A recent misunderstanding taught me a well-deserved humility lesson. Millennial spokesperson RhinoforDinner had challenged me: “What leadership quality do you think is most important for young leaders to learn?”

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Like a thoughtless Rhino, I jumped in feet first with an enthusiastic response. “I’d say Confidence, meaning ‘with faith’ in their True Selves: having the courage to hear & follow inner voice of Conscience.” Further, in a blog, Dangerous Times Call for True Radicals, I elaborated on why Two Sides of a Coin: Lao Tze’s Common Sense Way of Change is dedicated to the Millennial Generation.

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In retrospect, I recognize my answer came straight from my own world view, failing to take Page’s background and beliefs into account. So I didn’t anticipate his response. Instead of answering me back, he cut off our Twitter connection.

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I felt surprised, baffled and more than a little hurt. But when I expressed my disappointment to a close friend, he showed no sympathy.

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In essence, he reminded me of the obvious. I still have a lot to learn. In particular, he pointed out that to people of faith who read the Bible, my response might have seemed New Agey. The responsibility is on my shoulders to be far more careful, considerate and clear in the future.

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I did my homework. Page Cole is co-author of The Character-Based Leader: Instigating a Leadership Revolution…One Person at a Time. The book’s sub-title “one person at a time” resonates with the Positive Paradigm of Change and its motto, “Change from the Inside Out, and One Person at at Time.”

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However, whereas I’m a respecter of the world’s great religions, with an eye to the timeless, universal basics they share in common, Page is firmly grounded in the Baptist faith. I have greatest respect for the Bible and regard Christ as the ultimate universal teacher. But my answer failed to reflect this acceptance and respect. He had no way to recognize my answer as being completely in harmony with his beliefs.

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He had tweeted, “We believe in a Leader with Character, who acts with Integrity/Trust/ Respect for People. What do you stand for?” What he probably wanted to know was where I stand in relationship to other people.

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After healing my wounded feelings and doing an attitude adjustment, I invited Page to connect via LinkedIn. He quickly accepted, so I sent this message:

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Thanks for the connection, Page. I’d deeply appreciate your feedback. Rather than guess, I’d like to know from you why you responded to my Twitter answer to your leadership question by cutting me off. My head says to let it go. My heart says there’s something important to learn from you. There’s so much good will on this side. Why the disconnect?

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He responded charitably, re-following my Twitter account immediately. Later he emailed a detailed response. The cut-off was an unintentional error, he wrote, adding , . . “your comments were insightful and genuine. I loved the blog post.” But he also added a hint: “I’m not as versed in the writing you mentioned. . . “

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He continued, “I come from a distinctly Christian background.  I believe that ‘inner voice’ is the character within me that is being shaped by many factors, among them culture, family, relationships and of course Scripture and my personal relationship with God.”

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So far, it was merely a language disconnect. For him, “character” is a highly value-ladened word, one that by his definition spans the surface, middle and center of the Life Wheel, linking them. What I call a Philosopher-Warrior-Ruler, he calls a Person of Character. So far, no substantial disagreement. 

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Here’s how I picture our common understanding:

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BUT then came the heart of the disconnect. He continued,

 

I’m not convinced that the “inner voice” is always a good thing to listen to, as evidenced by the actions of destructive and evil people throughout history.

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This is a seriously important reservation. It’s my boundary-spanner job to reach across the divide with a response that connects us in common understanding.

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The unique contribution of the Positive Paradigm of Change is that it speaks to this issue. It pictures a reality map that draws clear distinctions between rational, sub-rational and super-rational levels of experience. It’s not a new model. But it rephrases the “perennial philosophy” in terms of Einstein’s physics, linking historical wisdom with modern experience. It gives a way to articulate the important difference between misleading, deceptive voices that imitate conscience and the “real deal.”

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It follows in the footsteps of psychoanalyst Carl Jung, who was instrumental in introducing the Wilhelm/Baynes version of the I Ching, the venerable Chinese Book of Change to the English-speaking public. He worked to define the common thread of human experience that links wisdom traditions throughout human history, as did comparative religion teachers, notably Joseph Campbell and Huston Smith.

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Universal stories they focused on include one told by the Greek philosopher Plato. His psychological model pictures a chariot drawn by a pair of horses that pull in opposite directions. A white steed tries to pull the chariot off course, striving upward so close to the sun that it risks catching fire and being consumed. The black one pulls downwards, threatening to crash the chariot and driver into the ground. The driver’s challenge is to rein in and coordinate the team, steering a steady middle course that avoids danger-filled extremes. In this way, he succeeds in reaching his intended destination.

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[Regrettably, this poetic model, while psychologically accurate, has been taken literally and harmfully misconstrued as if it had racist implications.]

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A similar chariot story from the Hindu tradition is told in the Bhagavad Gita. Arjuna, a warrior driving his chariot into battle, grows faint of heart. At this point, Krisna, a god representing conscience, makes his presence known. As the passenger seated behind Arjuna, Krisna advises with encouragement and wisdom, giving him the heart to prevail in fighting the good fight.

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The Positive Paradigm Wheel is true to these poetic traditions. All account for the interdependent facets of awareness. The rational mind (driver) of the chariot (physical body) must skillfully harness the horses (energies, emotions) that power the vehicle, while heeding the guiding voice of conscience in order to meet ultimate goals.

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In addition, however, the Positive Paradigm, also accounts for the actions of destructive and evil people throughout history which give Page pause. Despite claims to the contrary, such actions are not the result listening to the Inner Voice of Conscience. Evil actions are the mark of unbalanced extremists who have been misled into following the seductive voices lodged within the middle, sub-rational level of the Wheel.

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Destructive leaders are heeding not the innermost voice of Conscience, but the clamor of the Seven Deadly Sin-Demons — starting with Pride, followed by (and often in combination with) Anger, Avarice, Gluttony, Lust, Envy and Sloth. Modern day demon off-spring include Separatism, Exclusiveness, Arrogance, Ambition and Competition.

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What’s dangerously missing from the prevailing, exclusively materialistic paradigm of empirical science — a glaring gap which the Positive Paradigm of Change fills — is a universally acceptable reality map which includes the sub-rational middle level with all its dangers, but in its complete and correct context: contained by the super-rational level of intuition on one side and by the rational level of practical experience on the other.

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Herein is the common thread which continues the earlier blog, the Fateful Fear of Self-Awareness. I will shortly post a description of the reality map with emphasis on the too little known and greatly misunderstood, danger-fraught middle level. Character- based leaders in every walk of life and therapists as positive change agents can use it as a reference to realistically navigate the temptations of Seven Deadlies and their off-spring in order to prevail in fighting the good fight for themselves, and then for those those who place trust in them.

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In the meantime, dear Page, I heartily encourage you to read your Bible faithfully. I’m remembering Old Testament words burned into my mind from a performance of Mendelssohn’s Elijah long ago. It’s a tenor solo, the scripture-based words being, “If with all your heart ye truly seek me, Ye shall ever surely find me. Thus sayeth our God.” It’s as good a guide for sincere leaders as one would wish for in this dangerous world.

 

All best.

I’m a Passionate Mama Bear

A critic warned that unless I reach out to readers right away, I’ll lose them. Accordingly, I added this acknowledgement to The Positive Paradigm Handbook:

This book is dedicated to YOU, the reader. It acknowledges that we each mirror the potentials of the entire universe. The problem is that you’ve forgotten! Because the times are increasingly dangerous, you urgently need to remember who you truly are. WAKE UP!

I firmly believe that you’re far greater than you’ve allowed yourself to dream, and need only the encouragement, tools and motivation to prove me right. I’ve pushed myself to the burn out point to deliver the best I can offer, while there’s precious time left.

He hated it. “Saying ‘WAKE UP!’ will come across as an insult to some, and all the caps make it sound as though you’re yelling at them, “ he wrote.

What??? Of course I’m shouting. When a locomotive is bearing down on sleepers unknowingly camped on railroad tracks, directly in harms way, you don’t whisper. There’s no time for the subtle indirections he recommends.

But my message is intended as high compliment, a confirmation that we’re all potential GIANTS, albeit sleeping. How does he get an insult out of this?

He overlooked the rest:

I’ve been cautioned that the “average jane-schmo” can’t relate to my ideas. I don’t believe such a person exists. I’ve also been warned that because people today are unusually stressed, they want to read something “tangible.” I understand stress. But “feel good” stories and false assurances don’t change the facts or truly help anyone.

Do we as readers really want to be lulled into forgetful sleep? I believe we’re hungry to know why things are going terribly wrong and are urgently seeking better options. Life isn’t a popularity contest, nor is the Handbook about me. It’s about YOU and your ultimate survival. Please remember in reading it that I dearly wish you all the very best.

I’ve been told my style is “intense,” or “in your face.” I suppose so. It’s the voice of a passionate mama bear, fighting for the survival of her cubs.

“Give a story about your parents, or a teacher, or a mentor. Make people feel warm, like they can relate to you as a person,” advised my critic. I responded, “I’ve already done all this in the autobiographical part of Rethinking Survival. It’s filled with childhood anecdotes and other personal stuff. The Handbook is the bare bones summary.”

He declined my offer of a complimentary RS copy. Too busy.

For now, I’m providing excerpts from RS below that put my WAKE UP call in context. It’s more than just a call to wake up to current political abuses. It’s also a wake up call that points out HOW and WHY we’ve gotten into our current predicaments, WHO we truly are, and on that basis, WHAT options for positive change remain at this late date.

 

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I’m now convinced that the Positive Paradigm of Change is the ultimate answer to the ancient ultimate question. It’s the literal proof that humans are made in the image of the Creator — the microcosm resonates with the macro. I AM that I AM.

Put another way, “God don’t make no junk.” In this context, the exhortation, “Ye must be perfect like your father” makes perfect sense. Just as Einstein had the Unified Field Theory, but didn’t know it, each and every one of us on the planet is perfect in potential: made in God’s image. But we’ve forgotten.

And tyrants want you to sleep on. They’ll do anything to prevent you from remembering that you’re inherently okay. Because once you do, as Einstein did, no one can intimidate, control or dominate you. You’re aware that nothing anyone has for sale can make you more perfect. Nor can anything that anyone threatens to take away alter your essential okayness.

It’s your inalienable birthright. A given.

The Positive Paradigm is the viable basis upon which to build valid self-esteem. It’s the key to personal freedom — freedom from ignorance, freedom from fear. It’s the rock-solid foundation of functional democracy. It’s grounds for rethinking what the word really means and how to implement its promise.

One minor caveat: it all depends. While we all have the option to remember who we truly are, most of us are like Lambert, the sheepish lion. It takes a smack with a two-by-four upside the head before we’re finally ready to wake up. Often it takes the form of life-threatening danger to those we care for. A personal health crisis will also do the trick. So will job loss or a run-in with natural disaster.

But, like Dorothy stranded in the Land of Oz, when you want dearly enough to return “home,” you can click your heels whenever you chose — and come to find out, you’re already there.

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The threat of evil giants in the world serves to awaken the true giant that resides deep within each of us. That’s the blessing hidden in adversity. It’s the opportunity latent in Titanic Times. The Greek Titans, the giants sired by Kronos, survived his murderous envy and returned to claim their heritage. Similarly, there are giants are among us now. It’s time for them to WAKE UP!

In the face of Titanic dangers bearing down from all directions, remember the stork and cobra cartoon. The snake is winding up the bird’s long, skinny leg, wrapping around its neck in a choke hold. The caption reads: “Never, ever give up.” To this, I would add more — essentially other ways of saying the same thing.

First, to the snake: “It’s never to late to change.” Second, to the bird: “Never, ever forget.” No matter how dark and dangerous life becomes on the surface, God the Creator — the Tao, the Source of all life — broadcasts love, wisdom and hope eternal from the center of the Positive Paradigm Wheel. Remember this: We’re not alone. We never have been. We never will be.

Rethinking POWER

Because democracy is defined as “power to the people,” the Essay on POWER follows FREEDOM. With the stage set, the third blog – Rethinking Democracy – will summarize personal observations made in Rethinking Survival.

 

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57. POWER

 

 Nothing under heaven is as soft, receptive and yielding as water.

Its gentleness dissolves the hard, erodes and absorbs the rigid.

Thus, those who bend endure long after the unbending have snapped.

So it is that the low and high trade places, and the forceful loose their influence.

Like water, sages embrace humility to endure,

remaining flexible and responsive to the needs of the time.

This is known by many, but practiced by few.

 

— Patricia West, Two Sides of a Coin: Lao Tze’s Common Sense Way of Change

 

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“The principle aim . . . is to unfold a Tao of economics; it has always seemed to me appropriate to establish and re-establish a truer alignment of political and economic forces with the natural processes and, through the ancient Chinese I Ching, such an endeavour is possible.” — Guy Damian-Knight, The I Ching on Business and Decision Making

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“Part of what goes into acting decisively in any life situation, along with aggressiveness, clarity of thinking, the awareness of one’s own death, is training. The warrior energy is concerned with skill, power, and accuracy, with control, both inner and outer, psychological and physical. . . He has developed skill with the “weapons” he uses to implement his decisions.” — Moore & Gillette, The Warrior in His Fullness

 

THE FRONT

The root of power means to be able, potent. Webster’s first definition is the ability to do, act or produce. It refers to a specific ability or faculty, like the power to hear. It refers to a great ability to act or affect strongly using vigor, force, or strength. Power is used to describe the ability to control others, or the authority to influence, such as legal authority.

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Power refers to the source of physical energy or mechanical force that can be put to work, like water power. It points to a person or thing having great influence. It can mean a nation which dominates other nations. Power also refers to spirit or divinity. An archaic use implies an armed force: army, navy, or military strength, like air power. In optics, power refers to the degree of magnification of a lens, microscope or telescope.

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R.L. Wing elaborates on the adage, “Knowledge is power,” pointing out the unique advantage gained from focusing the I Ching magnifying lens on daily life. “The power and astuteness that we gain from this universal perspective,” she writes, “can be applied to any of life’s situations.” In addition, “We recognize situations that hold no promise because they are structured in a way that will cause their own downfall.” In other words, knowledge gives us insight to recognize where various choices are likely to lead, resulting is better decisions.

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In Taoist thinking, laws of nature explain why power over time reverts to the people. While drops of water are insignificant, they add up. The momentum driving a tidal wave is formidable. Divided by fear, ignorance, and narrow materialistic beliefs, individuals remain insignificant. Unified in wisdom by common purpose, people become powerful indeed. Leaders, whether a Stalin or a Mandela, ride the waves of time like energy surfers, directing their followers either towards slaughter or towards freedom.

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Great temporal power of itself implies no value. Its effect, whether positive or negative, depends on the context within which it’s used, either consciously or unconsciously, skillfully or incompetently, for good or evil. The results of a warrior’s prowess, military arsenal and self-control depend on how, when, where and why they’re applied.

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For example, in the last century Germany produced both a Hitler and an Einstein. Hitler was obsessed with the occult. He wanted to harness unseen forces to further his goal of world domination. Einstein, on the other hand, searched for the subtle laws of physics. He hoped thereby to discover a Unified Theory which perfectly describes the operations of nature. Had he prevailed, he would have re-invented the I Ching and its off-spring, the Positive Paradigm of Change.

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THE BACK

The opposite of power is powerlessness. Though energy is inherent in every life form, and every individual has the potential to express a unique variation of power, through any combination of external circumstances and personal choices, it can remain latent and dormant, an opportunity lost.

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A perversion of power is malicious aggression. Using force to harm others, even destroying life to steal material possessions or gain political power, violates natural law. In time, harm returns to the abuser in equal proportion to damage done. Herein is practical proof of biblical wisdom, “Justice is mine, sayeth the Lord.”

Snippets from The Positive Paradigm Handbook

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WHY PARADIGMS MATTER

Ideas drive results. People’s beliefs drive their actions.

Actions that stem from a simple, complete and accurate paradigm result in personal fulfillment, harmonious relationships, and economic prosperity.

Actions based on false, incomplete and inaccurate paradigms, however well intended or passionately defended, are the cause of widespread misery, suffering and deprivation.

As detailed in Rethinking Survival: Getting to the Positive Paradigm of Change, a fatal information deficit explains the worldwide leadership deficit and related budget deficits.

In a dangerous world where psychological and economic warfare compete with religious extremism and terrorism to undo thousands of years of incremental human progress, a healing balance is urgently needed.

Restoring a simple, complete and accurate paradigm of leadership and relationships now could make the difference between human survival on the one hand, and the extinction of the human race (or the end of civilization as we know it), on the other.

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The TWIN BASICS of POSITIVE CHANGE

Inside to Out. Individual change begins from the inside and radiates outwards from the central hub of the Positive Paradigm Wheel. Light initiating from the silent innermost center extends outwards. Guidance and inspiration are articulated in language. These ideas, expressed with genius and passionate conviction, drive motivated action that manifests in positive results.

Smallest to Largest. Transformation begins with the smallest unit, the individual. Therefore, the quality of family life depends on the functional integrity of each family member. Large organizations are improved by first improving the quality of family life. Qualitative reform of whole nations is achieved only by restoring the internal integrity of their agencies and supporting business connections.

Einstein’s New Way of Thinking

Human survival, Einstein warned us, cannot be taken for granted. Tipping the scales of history in favor of survival depends on freeing ourselves from the mental prison of limited, delusional thinking:

A human being is part of the whole called “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. We experience ourselves, our thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest . . . This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from the prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty. . We shall require a substantially new manner of thinking if mankind is to survive.

The Positive Paradigm of Change pictures Einstein’s widened circle of compassion, complete with his magical, magnetic all-encompassing center.

It’s also the answer to comparative religion legend Joseph Campbell’s prescient hint:

We don’t have a mythology for people recognizing the humanity of a person on the other side of the hemisphere. I’ve often wondered if some of the notions coming out of quantum physics, quantum interconnectedness, don’t express that.

In the interests of human survival, the purpose of The Positive Paradigm Handbook: Make Yourself Whole Using the Wheel of Change is to make this new way of thinking as widely known and usefully available as possible.

The Who, When, How, What and Why

Logical questions then follow. Who should use The Positive Paradigm Handbook? When should the Handbook be used and how? What are the benefits? Why is this method of “thinking like a genius” so effective?

Who? The Handbook is intended for self-selected survivors with the heartfelt desire to improve themselves and the courage to rethink their lives. Everyone everywhere with basic English language skills and a commitment to ensuring survival for themselves and those they care for can and should use The Positive Paradigm Handbook.

As the next-generation Book of Change, the Handbook is especially useful to those in responsible leadership positions as well as those who advise them. However, it is equally useful to truth seekers and decisions-makers in every walk of life.

The Handbook should be required reading for young people who need to understand the way the world really works and how they fit in.

When? It’s natural to cling to what’s already known and familiar, especially when it seems as if there’s no better solution to an admittedly bad situation. Many find the possibility of extinction so threatening that they refuse to even think about it.

However, this doesn’t make danger disappear. It just leaves escapists unprepared to face inevitable change. Regardless of what may or may not come, denial, resistance and procrastination are a dangerous waste of precious time.

Once it’s accepted that there is a hopeful and positive approach to facing today’s dangers, the time to work with the Handbook and internalize this worldview is NOW.

What? As the title suggests, the end result of using the Handbook is restored wholeness. The process of comparing one’s immediate personal organization to the Positive Paradigm standard of completeness is a means for recognizing excesses and deficiencies, the better to correct them, thus restoring balance, integration and harmony to the whole. Benefits from using the Handbook are cumulative. Depending on diligence and frequency of use, they increase exponentially.

On the one hand, intentionally aligning and linking the levels of experience will increase self-awareness, improve relationships and lead to effective decision-making. On the other, as beliefs and actions become significantly the less fragmented, the side-effects of stress and related mental/physical disease will decrease accordingly.

Why? In part, working with the Wheel of Change remedies the right- and left-brain imbalances that lead to dysfunctional results. Plugging left-brain language into the right-brain imagery of concentric circles has the balancing effect of stimulating both sides of the brain simultaneously. Further, diminishing the noise of emotional pain and overcoming the dichotomies of either/or thinking opens access to the innermost realms of conscience and the inspirational guidance associated with great leaders and inventive genius.