MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 24 – COMMENCEMENT

Commencement_def_mini

I am glad the time is here; I really feel as if I’ve hung on by my fingernails for the last few weeks. There have been a number of looming deadlines- and I can see my role in each: A (required) performance standard at work; a four day business trip last week; add to those the largest blizzard in 10 years here at home (with power outage) and the decline and passing of a beloved pet. (I take no responsibility for the last two…)

Of course my shortfall takes away not at all from the value of the MKE work, but I admit- my willingness has been impacted a little bit, especially with the blog… I just have had nothing for the last 2 weeks. I think I reached my limit of tolerance for sitting and staring at the small screen, I was just completely tapped out, creatively.

I have responsibility for that as well, because I took on one project after another during the last six months- it has all been to good effect, I just ran out of ideas.

I am grateful that commencement is defined as a beginning, I know for certain that in my case it is. The burn has returned- I’m not going to be denied the rewards of scaling further and further toward my more complete spiritual understanding.

If I could have done so, I would have liked to have had more time to devote toward the MKE, I had quite a climb to understand a significant portion of the work to be done and, in truth,  I flubbed some of it. Nevertheless, the fire has been lit, thanks to Jason (my guide), Mark J., the Fabulous Davene and their staff.

 

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 22 – JOYOUS AND INTERESTING AND VITAL

MeekBlessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.

“The true significance of the word “meek” in the Bible is a mental attitude for which there is no other single word available, and it is this mental attitude which is the secret of “prosperity” or success in prayer. It is a combination of open-mindedness, faith in God, and the realization that the Will of God for us is always something joyous and interesting and vital, and much better than anything we could think of for ourselves. This state of mind also includes a perfect willingness to allow this Will of God to come about in whatever way Divine Wisdom considers to be best, rather than in some particular way that we have chosen for ourselves.” Emmet Fox, The Sermon on the Mount

I noticed Mark referenced Emmet Fox on the webinar last Sunday – I have not read the book he mentioned: The Ten Commandments; but I have read The Sermon on the Mount. I am reading it a second time, much more slowly. As so often has happened in the Master Key journey, there has been a curious coincidence between my ongoing personal spiritual focus and that of the Master Key Experience. When Dr. Fox describes the metaphysical meaning of the word meek, that description seems to be something I would aspire to. The modern day definition? Not so much.

The third of the Beatitudes seems to be in harmony with Haanel’s lesson, especially with the instructions for this week’s meditation focus. Mandino’s Scroll VI seems to be in some conflict, in part. That’s okay, at least by this time I should have realized I don’t need to figure it out, especially at first.
 
In the Master Key Experience, for this week and next, we are tasked with observing an extended period of silence. (When I mentioned this to a group of friends, they all laughed, whether in empathy or amusement is unknown.) Frankly, I haven’t even scheduled it yet; my head is still far too noisy as it is and I think the silence will increase the noise rather than reduce it. It seems as if that’s what’s supposed to happen- at least at the outset. As I look at the upcoming calendar, perhaps I can regard the silent time as something that may be joyous and interesting and vital.

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 21 – BIGGER IDEAS

light-bulb2“Large ideas have a tendency to eliminate all smaller ideas so that it is well to hold ideas large enough to counteract and destroy all small or undesirable tendencies. This will remove innumerable petty and annoying obstacles from your path. You also become conscious of a larger world of thought, thereby increasing your mental capacity as well as placing yourself in position to accomplish something
of value.”  -Charles Haanel

This week we are faced with another set of polar considerations – those being some negative emotions: fear, hurt feelings, anger, guilt or unworthiness and how they might serve to expand our comfort zone; versus Haanel’s assurance that big ideas eventually blot out smaller concerns.

I can’t speak for anyone else, but I usually don’t fully comprehend Haanel’s lessons on the first reading. I have, to a great extent, followed the instructions on how to process the lesson each week- that being read until Wednesday; then read with a highlighter; then read the highlighted areas at a minimum. In many of the lessons I have had the Wednesday highlighter session be the one where the lights came on. Recently, that has not been the case – the illumination has been occurring further and further into the week.

It seems to me that the concept of the big idea scuttling the smaller ideas is the truth. Most of those feelings tend to be on the small side and a decent big idea should vanquish them easily. My only counter to that would be whether the negative feeling is generated from self or externally. If something is an immediate threat fear is a natural, God given and good reaction, otherwise the fear is small and only by means of my repeated thinking becomes larger. That makes it a pretty easy decision, does it present an immediate or overwhelming harm or not? The other three emotions present limited benefit, they only serve to hold me back.

All of this rational, reasoned argument is great, but it really doesn’t work, when IT’s got me. So, what to do?

I am sure that Mark J will have a concept, an illumination, that he will reveal this week, so I do not offer any substitute for that… just a recitation of my own experience. That experience I will try to recount; briefly.

For a long time this sort of thing owned me on 3 fronts, to the point of considerable anger, fear, guilt, etc., even to the point of physical illness. It repeatedly disrupted my life, or at the very least my immediate plans at various times. It no longer does so.

In each, the process of interrupting the preliminary thoughts, or thought pattern, followed by getting quiet and handing it over to God- frankly sometimes with a prayer, sometimes not; produced the same result: freedom. I wish it could be done as simply and quickly as that, in my case it wasn’t.

With each, once I completely, unreservedly, unequivocally gave it to God, (which means I didn’t go over and dig around in it to see if it was working or not) I was at a later time struck with a thought of: “How long has it been since I’ve been paralyzed over (blank)?” In my experience, it’s usually around 3 or 4 months; of course by then God HAS answered my prayer and the “problem” HAS been removed.

What do I do to keep from going back to the old ways during the 3-4 months? I can’t say what will work for you, but if I try to help someone who has bigger, more troublesome problems than I do, I generally am less likely to run into difficulty.

The question would naturally follow: if this works so well and it is so reliable, why are you not using it on everything, all the time? That’s a great question. My only answer is that for me, the Old Blueprint and my ego work together to tell me that I don’t really have a problem, or that this new situation doesn’t require that sort of attention (until it’s painful enough). So, I MUST continue to work toward a more perfect understanding of how I can align with God’s will.

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 20 – PRANA

LotusFlowerBreathe. Let go. And remind yourself that this very moment is the only one you know you have for sure. -Oprah Winfrey

My first successful meditation, after many attempts and failures, came as a result of advice I was given to allow my mind to wander but to always return to a consciousness of my breathing.

It is very interesting to me, therefore, that this week the lesson is very much about being one with the Universal Mind, which I call God. Concurrently, the reading in Scroll V is very much about Be Here Now.

Added to these are: a focus on my work product, which fits more and more comfortably with my DMP, increasing clarity on my WPOA and a higher level of satisfaction that I am offering my best.

I feel no need to explain in extreme detail, the process for each of us is as unique as our fingerprints. In short, I took the meditation instructions this week as a directive to focus on my one-ness with God, which in my view breath is the most compelling and continuous evidence of the connection.

I had a kind of self imposed deadline (again this week!) but I did not make any effort to conjure any visualization, rather, I took more time to focus on the directive in the reading and opted to trust that if I made my best effort there, the words I needed to be able to communicate would naturally be available. Without having much, if any difficulty with the phrases and only a couple of revisions, the end product appeared, and although I hesitate to say it came without effort, there was no struggle.

As a kind of curious counterpoint to the reading and lesson this week, part of the webinar last Sunday covered a requirement that we record or comment on how we had employed Fear, Hurt Feelings, Anger, Guilt and / or Unworthiness to expand our comfort zone.

For all of these paralyzing emotions I have found that prayers, accompanied by action have a significant effect, generally the effect is upon me rather than others. If I am in control of my thoughts (increasingly I am) then I have chosen- whether I am aware of it or not- to be fearful, angry, hurt, guilty, etc.

My difficulty is when I am in the grip of the negative feelings, I take action or give in to the emotion without taking the required step of praying or at least thinking of God or Universal Mind or whichever you choose to call Him, first. However, even if the first opportunity to let go has passed, I can always find a moment of solitude and ask for guidance.

The way this affects my comfort zone? The more I do it, the more quickly I am able to “snap back” to a rational state of mind and make a more calm decision about how to proceed, followed by action.

Of course, if I were anywhere near as good at practicing this as I am at talking or writing about it, I would be much further along in the spiritual journey.

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 19 – CONCENTRATE

MentalConcentrationThe master of a single trade can support a family. The master of seven trades cannot support himself. The wind is never for the sailor who knows not to what port he is bound. -Og Mandino

My ability to follow this week’s (meditation) instruction has been kind of sketchy; I believe one part of that is I’ve been consumed with sharpening some of my skills to do with business. As I have shared before, I am well aware that my mental effort nearly always defeats itself. To that end, I abandoned any evaluation of my meditative results and went about the business at hand. Concurrently, (as opposed to being a result) I think I have made significant progress toward what I want to accomplish.

The Master Key Experience has been helpful in this effort in that I have read or more importantly I have re-read material that I originally thought might be helpful, but viewed it as having little effect. However, the post- Master Key view of this (same) material is quite different. It hits me differently; it strikes a deeper chord.

I offer this example: I decided I had to look at a common stumbling block in my sales sequence and re-visited some material that I had mentally pigeonholed as “marketing” (in fairness, it is labeled as such) with the idea of gleaning some sales ideas. The first thing that I was struck with was that I was in a very similar situation with the instructor; that being I had no power, no credibility and no influence with my prospect except by and through the communication I offered, on its own. I also saw much more clearly what the prospect’s likely response sequence would be, from the initial contact to the next logical step, which I am clear is NOT the close, it’s closing on the next step. The Master Key Experience has made the visualization and detail of this process much more tactile, if you will indulge me that term, in my mind.

I believe a very large part of the difference between this course and other courses of improvement I have pursued is in the doing. As Mark has repeatedly stressed, reading the material intellectually is actually not helpful.

I have to DO it.

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 18 – PRESENT

BeHereNowThe power for creating a better future is contained in the present moment: You create a good future by creating a good present. –Eckhart Tolle

This really is an imperative, because the conditioning at this point has a strength all its own. The old blueprint no longer has the strength to pull me down as it once did, which has manifested by degrees. In my case there is an increased ability to bounce back from  any divergence.

The Master Key Lesson this week did not produce as much clarity of thought or visualization in the exercise, specifically, although my progress toward my DMP seems to have improved. It seems likely that there is a natural ebb and flow in this, I am not moved to examine this very much. I tend to categorize any tendency of this sort as being like digging up the seed to see if it is growing. It is self – defeating.

A kind of unsatisfying word for my current outlook is “acceptance”. Although I still believe there are some things that are unacceptable, I have less attachment to someone else’s agenda or motive, if it is in disharmony with mine, I am much more willing to let it be so and continue without allowing the distraction.

MASTER KEY ERIKB WEEK 17 – TAKE 2

HeroesJourneySmForgive us our trespasses, as we forgive them that trespass against us

I do not dislike writing a blog;  sometimes that deadline causes me a little discomfort, but that generally is eased by writing or, more accurately, the writing process. Last week I shared about my discomfort, angst and subsequent revelation. This week I would like to share a little bit more on how that came about.

I confess, I have been reading a tract that is outside the purview of the directives of The Master Key. I’m reading the outside material at the suggestion of a friend I met with a few weeks ago. I mentioned to him that I was reading The Seven Day Mental Diet, by Emmet Fox and he replied that since he had read Fox’s book The Sermon on the Mount he had never recited The Lord’s Prayer with the same understanding afterward. I have now read that book and I agree.

Since the first copy I found was online, I was sort of forced to read it in order. This was a good thing. It put me in the correct frame of mind for the part I’m about to share with you as well as being a big part of why I was able to reflect and realize last week.

Forgiveness has, in truth, been my longtime failure, for me to explain how and why will take too much for any of us to bear; this is where I will resort to a quote which I believe is appropriate, because it helped me to give it up in good order, completely:

Of course, nothing in all the world is easier than to forgive people who have not hurt us very much. Nothing is easier than to rise above the thought of a trifling loss. Anybody will be willing to do this, but what the Law of Being requires of us is that we forgive not only these trifles, but the very things that are so hard to forgive that at first it seems impossible to do it at all. The despairing heart cries: “It is too much to ask. That thing meant too much to me. It is impossible. I cannot forgive it.” But the Lord’s Prayer makes our own forgiveness from God, which means our escape from guilt and limitation, dependent upon just this very thing. There is no escape from this and so forgiveness there must be, no matter how deeply we may have been injured, or how terribly we have suffered. It must be done.

This and really, the entire portion on Forgive us our trespasses put the importance of the matter in proper perspective for me, in a way no other has to date. Fox goes on to say:

The technique of forgiveness is simple enough and not very difficult to manage when you understand how. The only thing that is essential is willingness to forgive. Provided you desire to forgive the offender, the greater part of the work is already done. People have always made such a bogey of forgiveness because they have been under the erroneous impression that to forgive a person means that you have to compel yourself to like him. Happily this is by no means the case – we are not called upon to like anyone whom we do not find ourselves liking spontaneously and, indeed, it is quite impossible to like people to order. You can no more like to order then you can hold the winds in your fist and if you endeavor to coerce yourself into doing so, you will finish by disliking or hating the offender more than ever.

What a relief! There is more and it is relevant, but to recite it all here would be wrong. Fox, as he does throughout his work, so far as I can see, puts each of his explanations and, yes, challenges to Christian religious doctrine in simple, concise order that nearly anyone can understand. More importantly for me, his writing has been freeing; it has kept me closer to a reasonable frame of mind that I probably wouldn’t have had otherwise.

If you become what you think and you want what you become to improve, maybe change your thoughts?

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