After posting Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 of the AmeriCAN Series last week, I revisited many historical D.C. landmarks with my cousins who were visiting from out of town. This quote from the Arlington Cemetery stood out:
Our Founders understood the powerful role that energy, faith and devotion play in creating success, and they knew their success would positively impact the entire world. At the time of this quote, the focus was on creating a physical space for our freedom to create what we wanted (life, liberty and pursuit of happiness). The belief was so strong that this space could and should be created that many lives were lost in devotion to this cause. Sacrifice was made so that others coming after could be in this space to positively create, expand, and advance beyond the role of our Founders.
This applies to you and me. This quote still stands true. In this eBook, I’m proposing that we apply it to the individual internal conflicts that are manifesting externally on a macro-level so that we can create the success that our Founders envisioned when they created this space. Essentially, our work is to create the space within our minds, hearts, and bodies to allow wisdom to flow through.
In Part 3, I explained how our minds draft temporary over- and under-inclusive laws that silently and unconsciously run on autopilot and conflict with our innate wise navigational systems. As previously mentioned, a common internal split is created from the illusion that one is only valuable when producing outwardly: The part of a person that wants to produce, help others and have a positive impact conflicts with the part that wants to play, sleep, relax, nurture relationships and care for the body because the latter activities take time away from engaging in the only means to being valuable when operating under this illusion.
(There are many other illusions. I’ll stick with this one for explanation’s sake and because the drive to live a valuable life is very strong among most individuals in this country. Also, this conflict is a principal one underlying the overall stress surfacing on a grand scale in our homes, work environments, communities and national politics.)
Anger, fear, anxiety, sadness, guilt and other negative emotions surface under this program to only focus on outward productive value, causing strife within an individual. For example, many people operate under the fear that they will not have enough money if they don’t work themselves to the bone, that they will lose their jobs or business opportunities or disappoint whomever is paying them (boss, customer, etc.). Anger surfaces from deprivation. Guilt tends to surface when one isn’t working. Sadness surfaces when there’s no time to play or we make a mistake, which causes us to question our value. Anxiety surfaces from the belief that there is not enough time to “get it all done” as we continue to create more and more opportunities to outwardly produce (which naturally manifests when our focus is on outward production as the only means for creating value).
Many people go from one extreme to the next on some level to strike a balance because they don’t realize their power to control this (by embracing a more balanced and truthful belief about themselves instead). Allergies, chronic illnesses, cravings, addictions and broken relationships surface to represent the parts that are being labeled as unimportant under this illusive operation.
As I explained in the March 9 post, our adrenaline survival response is mentally tied to our ability to succeed at creating value. When a conflict or challenge occurs at work, our stress survival response goes off even when our life is not in danger (which is most of the time for many of us these days as we work in our comfortable offices; exclusions apply to military, etc.). Ironically, this impedes our ability to produce in at least two ways:
- Our ability to create value deteriorates as we disconnect from our innate navigational system of wisdom, which depends on our ability to focus both inwardly (on ourselves) and outwardly (on others). When the stress response takes over, relaxing and thinking creatively takes a back seat. Ironically, a relaxed and creative mind, not a stress response, is what we need to create solutions in our comfortable offices—as most challenges and issues are related to communication or relationships or intellectual concepts, rather than physical survival.
- When the stress response dominates, it takes energy from all of our other systems (organs, cells, etc.), and many of us turn to external supplements to cope (sugar, caffeine, drugs, nicotine, alcohol, etc.). When this response is triggered on a regular basis, it takes a toll on the body, causing chronic issues that can be serious. (There’s a spectrum, of course. I’m not suggesting that everyone is at one extreme or another. Intensity also ranges at different times for different individuals. Nevertheless, this stunts our ability to move forward positively.)
After the hand that wants to outwardly produce (and does so under a dominating stress response) takes a hold of one’s life for a while, the other one is forced to take the lead for a bit while the body recuperates. And, it may not trust the outward hand to get involved again. Each hand distrusts the other and forgets that both are attached to the same body, the same person, and with the same overall goal of creating value, which is expressed and created through multiple forms. As soon as one grabs a hold of the situation, it pushes the other away. One’s positive truth that his or her wisdom is one’s ultimate value gets buried among the illusions.
Does this sound familiar? On a national level, each party shuts the other one down regardless of whether the collective goals are being accomplished by whichever one has the ball at the moment. For example, when one party is in administrative office and the other is dominating Congress, the one in Congress will hit the administrative agencies as hard as possible with outrageous subpoena requests for documents that serve no other purpose but to waste the other party’s time so they are stalled and less able to accomplish missions. Next, when the document review doesn’t reveal any problems with work that is being done, an intellectually dishonest report is drafted to make it look like there is an issue. (I’m not referring to any particular instance in current times…just describing the phenomenon generally. It’s one that I believe most people know exists whether they are politically involved or not.)
It’s distracting and difficult for the collective body to discern what is happening on a national scale. We get caught in the illusions and forget that ultimately our basic needs are all the same. As layers and layers of wood (illusions) get stacked so tightly in the fireplace, there is no room for the oxygen (wisdom) to assist in creating the fire that our Founders envisioned we would continue to tend in this space.
Thus, our ability to create value individually and collectively is compromised as we turn our energy, faith, and devotion towards incomplete beliefs or illusions about what it takes to create success and value. It’s not a coincidence that we have a healthcare crisis. It’s not a coincidence that we have conflicts between those who are working extremely hard and those who are not. It’s not a coincidence that we have two parties lacking trust in each other deadlocked on the best way to move forward on nearly every national issue. It’s not an illusion that both parties are right and both parties are wrong at the same time. Our leaders and our policies are representing us perfectly as we are right now. It is an illusion that we have to remain this way.
Rather than projecting outwardly from this conflicted place and blaming our leaders, the “other” party, each other, or some other external factor, we can turn our energy, faith, and devotion towards resolving such conflicts within ourselves first. Doing so creates the space for the wisdom to flow through as we then turn to communicate and create solutions with each other. As each of us creates a spark from within, it becomes easy for the sparks to jump and unite with each other. In doing so, we stand to transform the health and value of our individual selves, our businesses and other organizations and our country.