The Soul Connector

The Soul Connector

Reflections and tips on connecting with your soul, understanding the messages from your inner guidance, and enjoying a soul-fully rich and fabulous life...

28 July, 2007

Reflections on "The Four Agreements", pt. 2

Like millions of other people around the world, I just read the last Harry Potter book this week. The magical world of Harry Potter has a lot of appeal, doesn't it? But did you ever imagine that you could be a magician in real life?

Well, whether you realise it or not, you are a kind of magician! Just as Harry and his companions - friend or foe - go into battle with one another, so too do you and everyone around you.

Of course you don't wave a wand, but you do exercise an incredible power: the power of your WORD.

In the First Agreement, Ruiz states:
"Be impeccable with your word. Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love." (p27)
Ruiz goes on to elaborate:
"Being impeccable is not going against yourself. When you are impeccable, you take responsibility for your actions, but you do not judge or blame yourself." (p35)
That is such a powerful proposition, isn't it? Not going against yourself, only saying what you mean - speaking your truth. Seeking not to cause harm to yourself or others, yet doing so without judgement.

In the world of Harry Potter, the characters must learn how to use words of power in the right way, for they can cause great harm. Yet, in our world, we don't think about the power of the spoken word. We use words carelessly and thoughtlessly, but to equally powerful effect - to criticise ourselves and others, and either intentionally or unintentionally cause harm.

The First Agreement is a wakeup call from that state of "sleep" to a state of conscious choice about how you use the power of your word - both in how you address yourself and the way you talk to, and about, others.

Integrity is something to value most highly. The word integrity comes from the Latin, integritas, meaning soundness, wholeness or completeness. It also implies some sort of moral code - like an inner compass that guides you in right action.

You can actually feel it when you speak and act with integrity - it's like a positive resonance within you. And using the power of your word from a place of integrity, generates waves of positive energy that flow outwards into the world. In fact, your word is powerful enough to create your world.

Consider the well-known aphorism: "Know thyself." This was said to have been placed above the ancient Temple of Apollo at Delphi, to which people travelled from far and wide to seek out guidance from the great Oracle. Despite the function of the Oracle being to dispense wisdom, the words suggest the questioner turn inwards, rather than outwards, to obtain true wisdom.

For this is the greatest truth: you have all the answers you need within you. You already are whole and complete - you just need to remind yourself that this is the case.

Honour yourself by behaving with integrity and speaking your truth, coming from a place of love and compassion, and your experience of the world will be one in which others mirror this behaviour and reflect the same wholeness and truth, love and compassion back to you.

A magical world indeed, wouldn't you say?

04 July, 2007

Reflections on "The Four Agreements", pt. 1

Have you read or heard of The Four Agreements? It's a beautiful and insightful book, written in 1997 by Don Miguel Ruiz, a master of the Toltec mystery school tradition. The Toltec are an ancient culture from southern Mexico, who dwelt in the city of Teotihuacan, outside modern-day Mexico City. They were a society of scientists and artists whose goal was to preserve spiritual knowledge and practices.

In The Four Agreements, Ruiz shares these teachings with us, explaining how each of us forms an internal belief system that dictates the way we respond to life:
"Your whole mind is a fog which the Toltecs called a mitote... Your mind is a dream where a thousand people talk at the same time, and nobody understands each other." (p18)
What happens, is we filter through the fog and hone in on what particularly captures our attention:
"Attention is the ability to determine and to focus only on that which we want to perceive. We can perceive millions of things simultaneously, but using our attention, we can hold whatever we want to perceive in the foreground of our mind." (p5)
What we pay attention to, and (even passively) agree with, becomes embedded and enshrined in what Ruiz calls our own "Book of Law". As the name suggests, this becomes the basis for an internal system of judgement, in which we automatically judge everything we think, feel and do, in response to whatever crosses our path:
"As children, we didn't have the opportunity to choose our beliefs, but we agreed with the information that was passed to us from the dream of the planet via other humans. The only way to store information is by agreement." (p7)
If you think about it, you can intuitively feel when something is IN alignment with your internal guidance system, and when something is out of whack:
"Whatever goes against the Book of Law will make you feel a funny sensation in your solar plexus, and it's called fear... Even if the Book of Law is wrong, it makes you feel safe. That is why we need a great deal of courage to challenge our own beliefs. Because even if we know we didn't choose all those beliefs, it is also true that we agreed to all of them." (p12-13)
So what happens? We don't like the uncertain feeling of going against what's written in this internal book of judgement, even if we know it's not right. We fall into the trap of trying to please others, thinking that they're judging us, when it's actually self-judgement we're experiencing and projecting onto others. And so:
"We create an image of how we should be in order to be accepted by everybody... Trying to be good enough for them, we create an image of perfection, but we don't fit this image... We are never going to be perfect from this point of view. Never!" (p19)
But it is possible to change this internal belief system. As Ruiz says:
"If we can see it is our agreements which rule our life, and we don't like the dream of our life, we need to change the agreements. When we are finally ready to change our agreements, there are four very powerful agreements that will help us break those agreements that come from fear and deplete our energy... Instead of living in a dream of hell, you will be creating a new dream - your personal dream of heaven." (p24-25)
Over the next four weeks, I will be sharing and exploring those four agreements with you - one each week. I invite you to read and reflect along with me - kind of like our very own online book club. I'd love to hear your feedback as to how these ideas resonate with your own understanding and experiences. I look forward to taking the journey with you!