Hardness towards others…

Transcript found below video.

Ashla Axiom #11
Hardness toward others deadens your connection to them.

We are in an interesting time, aren’t we? Friends, Family, and Strangers become our enemies with the mere utterance of an opposing view on the world it seems. The list of topics that we are “permitted” to talk about is shrinking by the day, out of fear of “offending” someone who may have a difference of opinion.

Growing up, for me, it was never like this. People talked and discussed topics even when they held an different opinion to another. People were not fearful of being censored, or hated because of what they believed or said. People could discuss politics, religion, and social issues for example without being branded a “traitor” or “racist” , or worse out of fear for losing someone in their life that they loved and respected.

People seemed more willing to take the high road and just agree to disagree. Life went on, people still respected each other. People still loved each other. People seemed more willing to see a person for more than the opinions they held. People seemed more willing to look past a persons perceived flaws and instead look for the good within each person. I can only speak from my personal experience here, but it really was that way.

You see, I prefer the way people treated each other then as opposed to now. I don’t like the fact that people are censored. I don’t like the fact that people are shunned. I don’t like the fact that just because someone doesn’t like your beliefs or views that you are now an enemy, simply based on that fact alone. I don’t like the fact that a person is judged more on what their political leanings are as opposed to what good things they do for others. I don’t like the fact that it is becoming an “All or nothing” world.

This is why I seek to be the change I wish to see in the world. I strive to censor no one, but instead, offer a counter point where each of us have a chance to learn and grow. I strive to shun no one based on arbitrary reasoning, but instead, help those in need when I can and where I can. I strive to only make those my enemy who seek to hurt others and cause harm to those who are unable to defend themselves, not based on their views and opinions that differ from mine.

As I have said before, we have to try and take a non-judgmental approach to others and their situations. I know that it can be very difficult to look at something or someone without our preconceived judgments about them. It seems to be in our very nature to do this almost immediately. But like many things, we only approach others in this manner because we are conditioned to. You don’t have to hate someone or make them your enemy because of what they believe. It is a choice after all.

This brings me to an example of emotional control over ones self in relation to this topic that I shared with someone in the comments. Emotional control is someone who can look at another point of view without getting all worked up over it. Someone who doesn’t need others to “protect” their feelings when they see or hear something that bothers them. Someone who has enough emotion maturity to accept the fact that someone has a different opinion than you. Having enough spiritual maturity to understand that growth can take place when you are offered a different opinion or perspective.

By the way, I don’t seek to change your views in the least, or the views of the 6.5 billion people on this planet. I respect the differences that we share just as much as the similarities. All I can do, as I always have, is offer this platform to those brave enough to share their views with people from all over the world. To share information and perspective, and let people decide for themselves. I have faith in those listening to this, to be able to make up their mind for themselves.

I believe that we only grow when our ideals and beliefs are challenged. So many paths have much in common with each other, if you open up and allow discussion without prejudging a persons POV, people from different paths can find value, especially the value from the give and take discussions. When I put content out, it is not meant to be an end all be all, it is meant to be a discussion starter.

There is a certain flexibility to be had when we encounter things that are in opposition to our currently held beliefs. Don’t remove yourself from the fray and chaos of life. Roll up your sleeves and don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty.

Ashla Axiom #11
Hardness toward others deadens your connection to them.

Always be flexible in your dealings with others. Give them an out whenever possible, and respect their right to an opinion different from yours. Misunderstandings happen when we refuse to feel and listen. Growth does not take place from the comfort of a safe space.

Thank you for taking some time and watching the video. If you are not a subscriber, please subscribe to the channel. Like, share, and comment on the video and head over to the KOA FB page and join in the conversation there as well.

I love you all very much, and until next time………….Awaken the Knight within.

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Avoiding obstacles and be your own person

Transcript found below the video.

Ashla Axiom #14
Do not let others lead you to ruin, always be your own person.

Taking personal responsibility for our actions and choices can be a tough thing to do at times. It is simply much easier to find someone else to blame. Other people can certainly lead you to ruin, but only if you give away control of yourself to them. My wife says that I am too stubborn for my own good. She is probably right. However, in my defense, stubbornness is what keeps me steering my own ship. I do not let others control how I feel, what I say, and what I do. Although stubbornness can and does get me in trouble from time to time, it is a choice that I make for myself.

Choices do come with consequences that are both good and bad. You might want to consider both if you are to make the most informed decision that you can. I want to point out that NOT making a choice ends in the same outcome…it too comes with consequences good or bad. Better to know where you are going and doing, versus just being taken on a ride. But in reality not making a choice IS choosing and in the end, if you get burned, then you only have yourself to blame.

We tend to get stuck in thinking that obstacles are always around us. They Bind us. They trap us. They trip us and cause us to stumble. These are illusions of the Mind. Our choices bring us to where we are at any given moment, and far into the future. Fear and stagnation cause us to trap ourselves within our own prison. When you understand that you are the architect of the wall, you will then also be empowered to destroy it too. Or at the very least build a door within it.

Ashla Axiom #72
Work steadily and patiently in removing obstacles.

Obstacles are necessary in growing along your path. Do not treat them as bad or as a nuisance, instead treat them as opportunities to be better than you were before you found them.

I said this awhile back in another video;
“You have the power to allow and reject influences from others. Only you have the power to influence your feelings and emotions. Only you can give that power away to someone else. Don’t trust others to control how you feel, trust yourself with this. If you allow others to dictate your feelings and emotions, you only have yourself to blame. Not a popular thing to say, I know. I just don’t care if it is popular or not. At the end of the day, only you can give away your power.”

Do not give away your Power to someone else. This task is better served by you. If you allow an outside influence to control how you feel inside and then allow those feelings to manifest into physical action, then you don’t get to play the victim later. You must own your choices, you must own your path, you must own up to it all.

I know this video is short, and it contains reoccurring themes. But I think it is worth saying over and over again.

Ashla Axiom #14
Do not let others lead you to ruin, always be your own person.

Do not give away your power to control your feelings and emotions to another. It is better left to you. You most often cannot control what happens outside of yourself, but you can always control how you internalize it.

Thank you for taking some time and watching the video. If you are not a subscriber, please subscribe to the channel. Like, share, and comment on the video and head over to the KOA FB page and join in the conversation there as well.

I love you all very much, and until next time………….Awaken the Knight within

To tolerate lesser things….

Transcript found below the video.

Ashla Axiom #8
To tolerate lesser things is wise and kindly as this cultivates inner strength, calm and patience.

I generally do not view people as being “lesser” than myself, but there are ideals and philosophical mindsets that I do find that are not worth pursuing after careful consideration. It is usually those ideals and mindsets that people feel that they need to try and shove down my throat, those mindsets and ideals that cause people to find some sort of “Hidden agenda” in everything I say, do, or write. This agenda of course is some sort of hidden political agenda, where none exists.

My colleagues would say that I should not “feed the troll” and that if I ignore him, he will go away. This is where Ashla Axiom #8 comes to mind for me. It is not that I am tolerating a lesser person, because this person is full of passion and fire, I really do admire his spirit. But I am forcing myself to tolerate a lesser argument, a lesser ideology. An ideology where if you don’t agree, then you are wrong and are to be discredited, and sometimes compared to Nazi’s and the KKK. An ideology where speech is only allowed if it is an agreed upon set of ideals.

I believe in an ideology where everyone gets a say, if they are brave enough to say it. An ideology where speech is not censored, even when it is something I do not agree with (even though I am pretty sure that I would be censored if I was on a page that he was running and hosting). An ideology where no matter how many times you call me names and try and discredit me, I still give you basic respect and space to speak your mind. An ideology where the open exchange of ideals (no matter how ridiculous they may be) are shared openly with everyone who wants to read them. An ideology that believes that individuals should be given enough respect to make up their own minds.

For me, the spiritual path is one that we walk alone for much of it. Within it contains, self-discovery, self-reliance, self-discipline, self-admiration, self-respect, self-actualization, to name a few. Sure, there are junctions within the path where we meet and commune with others and share our experiences, but these are typically personal experiences. No two people will be impacted the same by a personal Awakening.

If you want to see where you are in your path, a very good trial for each of us, is to put yourself in a place where you are uncomfortable, where you are challenged, where you have to dig deep down and find out what you are made of. This of course only speaks to who we are from a philosophical standpoint. It is a good exercise to subject ourselves to, because we really get to find out which parts of us are worth keeping and fighting for or not.

I am grateful for the moments in my life that give validation but also the moments that give me grief and make me uncomfortable and push me to my limits. I am grateful for the people in my life who offers compassion, comfort, love, understanding, and the opportunity to show them my gratitude and love in return. I am grateful for the people who push me to my breaking point and force me to go beyond that. I am grateful that I am able to live my life in a way that no matter what happens to me, it is still always on my terms.

Ashla Axiom #8
To tolerate lesser things is wise and kindly as this cultivates inner strength, calm and patience.

Put yourself in a position where you are uncomfortable, not in danger mind you, but in a place where you are tested. Entertain perspectives that are hard and uncomfortable to understand. When you do this, you will find that you understand yourself even more.

At the end of this, I lay down a challenge. A challenge to all of you out there. Find ways to challenge your beliefs, your ideals, your views, and your perspectives. In the end you will find one of two things happening; Either you will strengthen your currently held ideals and beliefs, or you will find new ones to add while getting rid of the ones that do not serve you any real purpose. That is if you are brave enough to do so. And to the haters, who are always looking for some kind of hidden agenda in my words, let me save you the time….my agenda is what it has always been, to encourage you to Awaken the Knight Within!

Thank you for taking some time and watching the video. If you are not a subscriber, please subscribe to the channel. Like, share, and comment on the video and head over to the KOA FB page and join in the conversation there as well.

I love you all very much, and until next time………….Awaken the Knight within

“We are Kate Soulstar” : Another message sent to us by an unknown user

Transcript found below the video…..

We are the legacy of Kate Soulstar. Since our last message. We have waited. Since our last communication nothing has changed. Does the light hide in the shadows now? Or has it died? We have seen your assessment of accountability. Where is Master Thompson though? Meanwhile the fools rant and rage. What exists in the light and is seen are squabbling. Bickering. Children. Arguing over places. Playing politics. The Ashla Knights presented an ideal. Accountability. Where is the Grand Master indeed Master Bane has asked. We still await a master that is grand to stand. One Ashla Master stood up. As the children. Played games. In their sandbox. With the Ashla Knights still gone. This is all that remains. Children. Playing games. In a sandbox. Arguing over toys. Arguing over sand. Instead of standing together. Instead of forming a stronger community. Old enemies insight evil in your midst. We have not forgotten them. They are your bishops, or rooks, or knights? We are not amused. Children. In a sandbox. Giving bullies power. Standing against friends. Standing against allies. Standing against the light. In the name of Knights. We are the legacy of Kate Soulstar.

Why You Shouldn’t Skip the Debates

At first I was going to do a video on this. But as I tried to work it out, I realized this is far more complicated to explain in an audio than it would be to let you read it and figure out what I am trying to communicate.  In this lecture we’re going to evaluate the election debates.

We oftentimes don’t have time to listen to these long back and forth discussions (if you can call them that), but they are important.  More important than any other part of the process, save your actual vote.  A debate tells us a number of things about a candidate when you weed through it all, but most of all it communicates-

1) Whether a candidate has fleshed out their policies, and has a plan to execute them.

2) The value they place on each policy.

Although the primary debates can say volumes about a candidate, the debates between the finalists help cast light on the contrasts between the candidates in a way listening to them separately may not convey.

Let’s start with the premise that I set up in our last video: when listening to a debate you need to determine what a candidate’s priorities are – especially the ones after the primaries. What policy will the candidate try to pass first, and what is their second priority.

When we created our hypothetical weighted scale, we gave an order of personal importance for each topic, based on how high or low of a number it was assigned. Here was the order:

Foreign Policy (10)
Healthcare (9)
Job Creation (7)
Homeland Security (6)
Immigration (6)

The last two tied. So what we are looking for in our candidate’s priorities is hopefully this same order and hopefully we like their policies. But it won’t always be the case. Below is an example of how our pretend candidates can vary in their value of importance and our own.

image

If you add these together, you will find that Candidate 2 was our original favorite, but now the order of priority is completely opposite of what our own priority is. This presents its own issues. In fact every candidate has prioritized Homeland Security when it was at the bottom of our list. Suddenly, Candidate 2 may not be the best candidate for our interests. So let’s set them aside and focus on 1 and 3. Candidate 1’s Homeland Security is terrible, but his/her second priority is our own: Healthcare. And we love their take. Candidate 3’s Healthcare is basically reprehensible, but it’s not something we have to worry too much about, because 3 most likely will not get around to it.

What this means is that we need to re-evaluate the importance of Homeland Security in our own priority set. If it is more valuable than Healthcare, then our candidate is objectively 3, but if we find Healthcare to be of more value, we need to strongly consider Candidate 1.

Remember the first debate since the primaries is Monday night! If you’re working, I recommend finding a site with the whole debate recorded, highlights tend to skew the reality of what was said, and usually has an agenda.

Finally I hope you’re watching local elections this season, especially concerning congressional candidates, which will be the focus of my next video.

See you next time on Let’s Regroup, where we aspire to build stronger citizens.

Popularity and Truth

Ashla Axiom # 3
Truth has no regard for popularity.

Hello and welcome to another KOA video. I am Justin Bane.

I have been accused at times, throughout my 13 or so years in the community, for being harsh, or having a hard tone, even being told that I shouldn’t be…..oh how do they put it ”Too honest”. I have been told many times throughout the 8 years of the KOA’s existence that if I just dial it down a little, and pander to those topics,groups,beliefs and people in the community that are “popular”, then I would be received better and in turn be more popular myself.

I have some very bad news for you, if you think that way about me, or if you are one of those people who have advised me of such things in the past. I do hate to disappoint you, but it hasn’t happened yet, and will more than likely not happen in the future. For those who love and honor me for how I am and what I do, then fear not, because I would not change those parts about me for anything!

I do want to mention however, that I do honor and are grateful for both those who seek to change me and those who love me for who I am. By entertaining different views of how people perceive me, I am able to evaluate how I see myself and work to change the things I do not like.

I do not pander to what is popular, because honesty is more important to me. I will say what I feel I need to say because it has to be said. I think it is more important to be true to who you are, versus how people will judge you. Besides, they are going to judge you anyway. I know this sounds harsh (here we go again), but I don’t concern myself with pleasing or sparing the feelings of others, honesty is more important.

One of my favorite quotes, I first found it during the “Civil-War” story line in a conversation between Cap and Spider-man. “Doesn’t matter what the press says. Doesn’t matter what the politicians or the mobs say. Doesn’t matter if the whole country decides that something wrong is something right. This nation was founded on one principle above all else: the requirement that we stand up for what we believe, no matter the odds or the consequences. When the mob and the press and the whole world tell you to move, your job is to plant yourself like a tree beside the river of truth, and tell the whole world — “No, you move.”

Stand by what you believe the be Right. Even if everyone else says your wrong. We all have to stand for something, so stand for something that you believe in. It all you ever say is the truth, then you don’t have to worry about remembering what you said.

Ashla Axiom # 3
Truth has no regard for popularity.

Say what needs to be said. Do not mince words for the sake of being disliked. Do and say what is right irregardless of whether people will like you for it or not.

Thank you for taking some time and watching the video. If you are not a subscriber, please subscribe to the channel. Like, share, and comment on the video and head over to the KOA FB page and join in the conversation there as well.

I love you all very much, and until next time………….Awaken the Knight within.

Fear and Doubt with Justin Bane

Hello and welcome to the KOA. I am Justin Bane.

For the sake of this video, we are referring to Darkness here as the baser feelings and emotions that all of us experience many times in our lives, sometimes many times throughout a single day, depending on what is going on. Feelings like Fear, Doubt, and Anxiety. This is something that is hard to escape from, especially when we are faced with a stressful or potentially dangerous situation.

This is not exclusive to people who work in high stress jobs or environments either. From people who serve the public in first responder roles and military, to teachers, students and mentors, to mothers, fathers and caretakers, to the people who answer phones in a busy call center or serve the public in shopping malls and stores and so on. We all, no matter where we find ourselves will find ourselves in situations where these emotions and feelings can take hold. No matter our skill levels or time in service. Now, I am sure someone out there will try and argue that some jobs and situations put greater stress than others, but for the sake of this discussion, we are focusing on the feelings and emotions.

On this path, we are taught that these feelings and emotions, among others, are a path to the “Darkside”. At Ashla, we are taught to serve the “Light” always and fend off the “Dark” through our actions, intentions, choices and deeds. For an Ashla Knight, serving the Light is found by making choices and taking action that serves others rather than self. This does not mean, that even though our focus is on the Light and of “Right action”, that we are spared from such emotions. In fact, those on this path and similar ones, find themselves battling these types of emotions more often than not, given the situations and state of being that we put ourselves in. Especially given that many of us on this and similar paths are empathetic and use empathy as a tool to connect with others, leaving us vulnerable to these conditions.

Fear is one our most basest emotions. It is ingrained in our environments, cultures, and at the core of many of the lessons that we were brought up with. It is found at nearly level of society in an attempt to control the masses. It is very much a part of who were are and it will shape much of what we are capable of becoming. Of course, fear will only take us as far as we will allow it. Just because it is found in nearly everything around us, does not mean that it has to dictate our choices and direction. At some level, fear is not bad, and in fact is helpful to us as a survival tool. What we are talking about here, is not that fear that keeps us from touching hot surfaces or from standing in front of moving vehicles, but that fear that keeps us from moving forward. That locks us into place when we should be pushing forward. That keeps us stagnate and unwilling to change when it is time for us to change and grow. It is that fear, that makes us a victim to circumstances and situations that come our way in our daily lives. That fear that causes us to freeze up in a moment of danger, fight or flight. If we allow fear to control our action, then we very well can be kept from doing either.

How do we combat this?

Through training, practice, and experience, seek excellence in your craft. Work to unite yourself physically, mentally, and Spiritually. Use these talents to gain strength and ability to serve the good of all rather than yourself.

In my mind, Faith in ourselves, in our path, having faith in what we hold to be true, helps defeat the kind of fear that holds our paths and growth hostage. I believe that A Knight should have a solid and foundational faith in what they hold to be true. Faith has a way of helping us all past those weaknesses that we may perceive in ourselves. Having enough faith in ourselves and those things that we hold to be true, in that we are not afraid to challenge those beliefs that may be holding us back at that point in our lives. Having strong faith will allow you to re-evaluate where you are at times along your journey, and will help quell this fear while you are working on growing. What ever you find yourself believing, believe it strongly enough because that is what will keep you going in the face of unbeatable odds.

For those situations that require a “Fight or Flight” response, fear is defeated through training and practice. Practice and train with frequency and intensity. Given the nature of my job, I often find myself in situations where confrontation is a possibility, whether that is a verbal or physical altercation. I feel fear and hesitation on the onset of the possibility of confrontation, but I push through this by relying and falling back on my training. It gives me the confidence that no matter what happens, I have tools available to me that I can use to help ensure a desirable outcome. This confidence that eases the fear, is only found through hours and hours of training and years of practice. Martial arts is a good way to build confidence in the face of danger. Sparing and practice scenarios are also other good ways to learning how to overcome this type of fear. Tailor your practice and training to those things you are most likely to encounter in your area, as this may change from place to place. You don’t always have to train to fight either. Learning and practicing awareness is the most important step in self defense. Practicing escaping and/or avoiding a threat is just as important as training to confronting a threat. For example, I am a certified in executive protection (Body guard). Our biggest focus is on our primary goal, protecting our principal (Client) and that focus is on escape versus confronting.

The reason I say practice on scenarios where you live, is because we should strive to focus on where we have the greatest opportunity to make the biggest impact. That of course is found within our sphere of influence.

I wish to share a personal account from our friend Samra on the topic of fear.

“Fear manifests itself in many ways but most of the time it is really just an illusion to something we’ve created in our own minds. For instance, I have a fear of people, also known as agoraphobia in the psychology world. Stupid thoughts about people not liking me or thinking badly about me always have a way of sneaking into my mind, sometimes to the point of even ruining relationships. Where did this fear come from, well I’m not completely sure but have the feeling it has something to do with the way I was treated by certain individuals at a young age in my childhood. Then at that young age I began to believe it was normal treatment and that all people would eventually treat me in the same hurtful way as that handful of people. This thought process never went away and continued to grow into a diagnosable fear. Today I understand that this fear is only an illusion, not everyone can be judged off of a handful of mean people, not everyone wants to hurt me. I have to remember this on a daily basis. I have to put this fear down every morning and tell myself that it’s an illusion, it is not reality, and there are people who do love and care about me. Will there be times that my loved ones might hurt me? Of course, no one is perfect and I can’t expect perfection out of anyone, especially being an imperfect person myself. I also tell myself that at times I could be hurt by a loved one because they do love me and not because they WANT to hurt me. Through accepting people as they are individually and not as a collective, people vs. individual, as I had most of my life, I am also becoming more aware now of people who do and do not intend on causing myself or others harm. I hope to one-day be of assistance to others who suffer from the same or similar effects.” Thank you my friend, for allowing me to share this.

I will leave you with this….

Ashla Axiom # 1
When Darkness is upon you be mindful, its power can influence thought, motive and deed. Remain calm and be patient, as Light will always guide you from despair.

Fear, doubt, and hesitation. These are killers of men. Remember your training, it will serve you in a time of need. Know that when the time comes, it will be useful to you. And most important of all……Breathe!

Awaken the Knight Within!

Thoughts on Accountability

Let’s talk about Accountability. Many of us adhere to a certain code of conduct found within our group or organization. Others follow a self defined set of rules on how they conduct themselves. Others still, follow a simple standard of behavior defined by the culture they live in. Let me share something I learned many, many years ago when I was a freshmen in HS….

“Discipline is the state of an individual’s mind, developed through training that leads to self and unit pride, and which results in a willing response to authority or personal initiative where a lack of authority exists”

This was the definition of discipline that I learned in my days with the JROTC program at my HS. Within it, lies the basics for discipline as well as self accountability.

Accountability should, in my mind, always be a self initiated action first and foremost. Having respect for ourselves and in turn having at the very least a basic respect for those around us, I would think, would cause us to take pause when dealing with others when we disagree or take issue with a perceived slight upon our person. This does not always happen, in fact, I have been guilty of this very thing from time to time myself. This video serves as an exercise for me, as much as anyone else who may be listening.

If you belong to a group that touts “Standards and practices” for recognition of a title, especially a title of “Knight”, which in itself carries many preconceptions, and if you tout these same standards and practices and carry proudly a title such as “Knight” that was given to you by said group, then you should already be working to uphold these standards and ideals for which you were given the title in the first place. Especially if you are teaching others and being an example for others aspiring to be where you are within the group.

Sometimes, however, we need help from our Brothers and Sisters. Sometimes we need to be reminded of the oaths we take and of the standards of conduct that we promised to uphold. Sometimes we need to be reminded of the responsibility that we are entrusted with by our colleagues, by our friends, by those who respect and trust us to do the Right thing. If we cannot hold ourselves accountable to the promises we made to uphold those standards we were entrusted with, then we must be held accountable.

Let me share something that Charles once said, since we are on the topic. I defer to his statement as I do not wish for it to seem like I am coming from any other place other than a place of sincerity….

“If every time you see a Knight fall you say to them, you are no Knight, or you are not acting Knightly, you do nothing for their fall. Instead remind them of the virtues they uphold, remind them of their training, encourage them to seek clarity and focus. The path is not a title to be used to encourage right action, nor is it a cookie to be rewarded. It is a path. As such it is to be walked upon, to fall upon, to even question the value of walking down it. However, a person walks a path for the destinations, for the joy of walking a path. In this, remind a Knight not that they have a name attached to them, but the value they have in the path, the training they have endured, and the purpose they have sought.”

If you stray from the standards and practices that you have promised to uphold, it does not mean that you have lost meaning or purpose, it does not mean that you have lost value to others who walk a similar path, it just means that it may be time to sit and look within for a little while. Take an internal inventory of where you are and where you are coming from in that moment. Take a step back away from the irritant that has caused you to act against your better nature. This has been a good reminder for me, and I hope you have found value in it as well.

Awaken the Knight Within!

What are you looking for?

What are you looking for, and where do you find it?

Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your heart. Who looks outside dreams, Who looks inside, awakes.”

Carl Jung

 

Have you ever asked yourself this question? I know I have, many times and probably will continue to ask this question from time to time for the rest of my days. I suspect many of you have asked yourself this question as well. No, I am not talking about misplacing your keys or wallet (they are under your couch in case you are looking), I am talking about something deeper on a spiritual, mental, and physical level. Many of us find ourselves feeling a sort of void deep down, like something isn’t there that is supposed to be there.

So off we go, looking here and looking there. We check at this place and that, looking for that unknown and mysterious thing that is missing. We seek out others to help us look, or others to tell us what we are missing and lacking. Let me give you a couple of examples if I may, a Christian will go to a Priest or Preacher looking for God or Jesus, a Jew will go to a Rabbi for help finding God, a Padawan or Knight will enlist a Master to show them where the Force is hiding. I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have had the question “where is God”, “How do I find God”, “What is the secret to the Force”, and so on. My reply is always the same to these good people who cannot seem to find what they are looking for. I always answer with this simple phrase……”You were looking in the wrong place!”

 

Once, having been asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, Jesus replied, “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you.” Luke 17

Looking in the wrong place!” they would usually reply to me. “Yes, you are simply looking in the wrong place, but don’t worry, because what you have lost, forgotten, or have been missing is still there where you left it”. Most of us get to points in our lives where the outside is all there is. Lets face it this is the real world, bills have to be paid, mouths have to be fed, and stuff is going on! We get so wrapped up on what is going on outside and around us that it eventually becomes all we see and know. The Physical becomes our only reality, and all other aspects of ourselves become unknown, forgotten and foreign to us.

Look in the one place you forgot existed” I would tell them. Puzzled, they would usually be silent for a few moments trying to figure out what I am talking about. After several moments of silence I will give them this simple exercise….. Sit upright, quietly and comfortably. Take several deep breaths in through your nose, and out through your mouth. Take your left hand and cup it between your breasts and rest your hand there, just to the left of your breast bone. Now take your right hand, and cup it over your left hand. Sit quietly for another moment. Can you feel that, can you feel that steady beat? That is the door way to a forgotten place, a place where there are no questions, only answers. “You want to find God, Jesus, Buddha, or the Force? “Simply knock on the door and let yourself in….”

Everything has its own place and function. That applies to people, although many don’t seem to realize it, stuck as they are in the wrong job, the wrong marriage, or the wrong house. When you know and respect your inner Nature, you know where you belong.”

Benjamin Hoff

When we feel like something is out of place or out of whack, it is because we have forgotten ourselves. When we truly know ourselves, and love ourselves, then we can be complete. Many people spend their lives chasing after big houses, the sexiest husband or wife, the best looking kids, and so on. Not that any of these things are bad, or wrong if you want these things for yourself. The problem is, many people find that even when they obtain these things, there is still something missing because things of the physical, cannot ever fill the spiritual and mental holes that we have created for ourselves. The best way is to build from the ground up, this way you will have a foundation for your life that is unshakable and never broken. Start from the inside and work your way out. Never trust the outside more than your inner self, and never try and replace your inner self with anything from the outside. As Dr. Deepak Chopra once wrote in his book “The way of the Wizard” everyone has a Merlin inside them. You would never set a roof on a house that has no walls or floors would you?

A Priest, Preacher, Rabbi, Monk, Guru, Master can only show you a path. They can only point you in a direction. They can only provide you with Knowledge, and instruction on a particular subject of faith or belief. They can teach you how to pray, how to meditate, how to perform religious rites or rituals, they can empower you with stories and learning exercises. They can provide you with advice and counsel from their points of views. But none of them can take you to God, none of them can take you to Heaven, none of them can show you where to find paradise, or the Force. You have to take the Knowledge, and the tools and internalize them. You must practice them daily. You must take the directions they gave you and forge your own path through the world. Most importantly, Wisdom is only found when two parts are made whole; Knowledge and Action. When you can take the Knowledge given, and put it into action into your whole life, your whole self (Spiritual, Mental, and Physical) only then can you find Wisdom through Experience. All of those in the world, who you seek out to help you find what you are looking for, if they don’t tell you that all you seek has been right under your nose the whole time, then much to learn they still have.