Master Key – Week 19

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

I’m catching up (its Week 24)  . . .

Hannel:

Fear is a powerful form of thought. It paralyzes the nerve centers, thus affecting the circulation of the blood.

This, in turn, paralyzes the muscular system, so that fear affects the entire being, body, brain and nerve, physical, mental, and muscular.

Me:

Back in the late ’90s is when I was first exposed to the Master Key System and Think and Grow Rich.   At the same time I was reading Ayn Rand – The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged.  In those novels, she spent a lot of time portraying individuals – other than the hero – whose internal mental environment was fundamentally fearful.

That resonated with me.  In fact, I remember thinking that the first line in my autobiography (if I were to presume to write one) would be, “I’ve lived my life in fear.”

I can look back and see the major life choices I made that were influenced more from fear/avoidance than from possibility.

Now, the reality, those decisions were survival based and I then proceeded to make the most of those decisions – and am grateful that I had the abilities to do so.  Things haven’t turned out all bad and I haven’t done poorly.  But the cumulative effect is that I can see that I have lived less of a life than I was, in fact, capable of living.

As we learned later, fear is a focusing and energizing state.  I did capitalize on that also – albeit unknowingly and, looking back, only within the constraints imposed by that undercurrent of fear.

Amy Cuddy’s Ted Talk video:

Collateral to the fear was the sense of “not belonging ‘here’” – graduate school, relationships, music, and other endeavors – were all tainted with that feeling.

While I didn’t have Amy’s guidance as the simplicity of her suggestions, I realize that I had developed a “power pose” of my own: it was music based.  At the end of the day during my drive/commute home, I was always recharging with the music that moved me played full blast on my great car stereo; or my own practicing was revitalizing because I always pursued power and technical proficiency;  playing with a great tone and technical agility for me was a “power pose.”

Now that I’m back to practicing, I now tap into that every day.  It’s making a huge difference.

Tool and Progression:

I’m grateful for Amy Cuddy’s “power pose” tool and I’m being mindful or remembering that when I’m out about (and can’t grab my horn for a quick personal power fix).

I was diligent in creating/maintaining the index cards to be flashed through daily and have resumed that practice.

I’ve resumed the gratitude/RAK components of the Happiness progression (the other three components are well grounded habits already).

I am grateful.

THANK YOU!

Master Key – Week 18

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

I’m way behind (its Week 23) but I’m back at it . . .

February 5th, I caught the flu that was so much in the media at the time.  It completely took me out for a week.  Then it took another 3 weeks for me to feel pretty much myself again.

But, as it all starts with the Mind, as I look back I see that it was simply the physical manifestation of the Mind or Spirit Flu that has taken me until today to recover from.

Certain MKE habits/portions of MKE habits stayed with me – reading the Master Key – reading the Greatest Salesman at least once a day – making/viewing the webinars – some of my WPOA items (not all) – listening to my DMP recording.  But plainly not blogging and plainly not certain critical WPOA items.

I’m back to finish and, being the observer, seeing what stuck and what didn’t stick during my Mind/Spirit flu, has helped me see the cement that is the thickest and demands the most thought/action to disintegrate.

I am a White:

As a White, peace is all about inner harmony and balance.  We don’t like to have our equilibrium disrupted.

Alone time for a White is not just appreciated, it is mandatory.  We’re not lonely, however.  We enjoy ourselves immensely in the moments we can spend time in our own thoughts.

Hannel:   In order to grow we must obtain what is essential for our growth, but as we are at all times a complete thought entity, this completeness makes it possible for us to receive only as we give; growth is therefore conditioned on reciprocal action, and we find that on the mental plane like attracts like, that mental vibrations respond only to the extent of their vibratory harmony.

What I see now is that my anxiety peptide addiction has been held in place and nurtured by my White tendency to protect the internal equilibrium/environment in which I have existed for most of my life.  I reverted to remaining a “complete thought entity” not taking any action – just staying within myself.  In fact, I can look back and see that pattern as it as played out throughout my life.  Wow!  Explains a lot.

Without the feeling of anxiety/fear, I’m rudderless.  Looking back where we were in the MKE when I stopped blogging, we had just finished that great mastermind Gratitude experience and the Happiness progression.   All that was too disorienting for my anxiety-fed internal equilibrium.  I couldn’t do anything until I fell far enough behind in everything to feel the rudder of anxiety/fear again.  And here I am . . . .

More than ever I appreciate the need to be loyal to all the MKE exercises.  I loved how I felt after the Gratitude experience and maintaining the Happiness progression.  I’m back working towards those feelings.  But this time, I’ll be ready for that feeling of “rudderlessness” and make my way through that feeling by, as per Og, by exerting my strength to force my actions to control my thoughts exactly in accordance with all the MKE exercises until my rudder is fully functioning; not dependent on the energy-sucking stopping/starting of anxiety/fear but rather in the full effortless flow of Gratitude and Happiness.

Stay tuned . . .   Awareness is the beginning of change.  I’m here for the Hero’s Journey.

 

Master Key – Week 17HJ

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

The MKE continues to be profoundly orchestrated.

The pause in the material to bring our focus to the Hero’s Journey was perfectly timed.

Permission

We were asked to give ourselves permission to be Happy.

But, for me, there are tacit permissions that must also be collaterally granted.

I have given myself permission to not be perfect; to be a work in progress.

As we’ve been shown to do, I’ve given myself permission to focus only on what I’ve done right and what I can do better.  I’m not focusing on what I haven’t done as I originally “hoped;” particularly with respect to the MKE.

The Hero’s Journey

I’m here for the Hero’s Journey.  I’m all in.  The moment IS a masterpiece . . .

Pretending Not To Know

I’m still working with the daily question of “What am I pretending not to know?” and I expect more insights to follow.  But, for starters, what I’ve realized is that I’m pretending not to know that I AM allowed to be imperfect; to be a work in progress; that I am allowed to have to practice to obtain the mastery I desire; and that, as long as I continue to do better at serenely, persistently, and continuously doing what the person I am becoming would do next – I am being my best self.

Michelangelo and the Statue of David

As an example of the real experience and challenge of creating out of imagination, I’ve heard it said that Michelangelo looked at the block of marble and saw the statute of David.  And that statute is a plain effect of the cause that was Michelangelo’s imagination, planning, and actions.

Here’s the rest of the story:

Michelangelo was asked by the consuls of the Board to complete an unfinished project begun in 1464 by Agostino di Duccio and later carried on by Antonio Rossellino in 1475. Both sculptors had in the end rejected an enormous block of marble due to the presence of too many “taroli”, or imperfections, which may have threatened the stability of such a huge statue. 

Rossellino’s contract was terminated in 1475, and the block of marble remained neglected for 26 years, all the while exposed to the elements in the yard of the cathedral workshop. This was of great concern to the authorities, as such a large piece of marble not only was costly but represented a large amount of labor and difficulty in its transportation to Florence.  In 1500, an inventory of the cathedral workshops described the piece as “a certain figure of marble called David, badly blocked out and supine.”

A year later (1501), documents showed that the authorities were determined to find an artist who could take this large piece of marble and turn it into a finished work of art.  They ordered the block of stone, which they called The Giant, “raised on its feet” so that a master experienced in this kind of work might examine it and express an opinion.

This is the block of marble that confronted Michelangelo.  An enormous block of marble (the finished statute is about 17 feet tall); intrinsically flawed at the outset; badly exposed to, and potentially deteriorated by, sitting out in all kinds of weather for almost 26 years; and already poorly started by the failed efforts of another artist with an entirely different conception of the statute.  But the purpose of this block of marble was unique; it was it’s own purpose – to be the Statute of David.

It wasn’t a blank, fresh piece marble.  This makes Michelangelo’s ability to imagine and create the statute of David all that more remarkable.

At this stage in the MKE and with the insights we’ve been provided thus far, I now see myself as both the block of marble and as Michelangelo.

As the block of marble, I, with my human frailties, have 62 years of open, unguarded exposure to all the weather of life; shaped by the unfiltered influence of family, friends, and employers due to ignorance of my own true interests; and conceived in love and brought forth for a purpose.

As Michelangelo, it is my commission to bring out of block of marble I am the statute of David I desire to be.

It took Michelangelo 2 years of persistent, continuous action to complete the statute of David.  And he didn’t bring David straight out of the marble.  There was trial and error with terra cotta and wax models – continuous practice and repetition of each component of the statute – before he applied the cause of his imagination and left only the marble that was David.

I’m not blocking out two years for my process.  I am eager to accomplish my desires as quickly as possible.   I am demanding of myself serene, persistent, continuous action toward my desired achievements – and keeping my promise to render such action.  I am simply giving myself permission to be Happy while I do the work to bring forth the statute of David that I desire to be from the block of marble that I am – however long that may take.

As an aside, we were guided to review Chapters 9 and 10 of the Master Key System this week.  I suggest that Chapter 13 also be part of the review during Week 17 – Hero’s Journey:

Hannel – Chapter 13

What you and I desire, what we all desire, what everyone is seeking, is Happiness and
Harmony. If we can be truly happy we shall have everything the world can give. If we are happy ourselves we can make others happy.

But we cannot be happy unless we have, health, strength, congenial friends, pleasant environment, sufficient supply, not only to take care of our necessities but to provide for those comforts and luxuries to which we are entitled.

How are we to get the actual, tangible results here and now?

In the first place, we must put our knowledge into practice.  Nothing can be accomplished in any other way. The athlete may read books and lessons on physical training all his life, but unless he begins to give out strength by actual work he will never receive any strength; he will eventually get exactly what he gives; but he will have to give it first.

Thought is a spiritual activity and is therefore creative, but make no mistake, thought will create nothing unless it is consciously, systematically, and constructively directed; and herein is the difference between idle thinking, which is simply a dissipation of effort, and constructive thinking, which means practically unlimited achievement.

Master Key – Week 17 (Week 11)

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

Dog days of summer . . . 

In regard to baseball, if the season is a marathon — and many within the game refer to it as just that — the dog days are Mile 18. The end seems nowhere in sight . . . 

For Padres third baseman, Chase Headley, . . . the preparation for the dog days begins in the offseason . . .

Headley, who leads the big leagues in games played this season, is a firm believer that proactive treatment . . . . are what best allows players to avoid being ground down late in the season.

“The guys that do a better job with that generally have more success with being able to stay on the field and being able to maintain in August and September . . .

But the dog days eventually come to an end.   For Pirates catcher Rod Barajas, the key was never to let them start.

“These games are just as important as the games at the end of September,” Barajas said. “These games count just the same. We’ve been trying to play playoff baseball from the get-go.”

But it’s not always that easy, and Barajas acknowledged that energy has the potential to dip in late July and early August if players don’t keep their focus . . .

Wow!  This one hit me square between the eyes.  Even before the MKE/MKMMA, I see that I’ve fallen victim to the “dog days of summer” syndrome regularly.  Whether its been college or graduate school, practicing music, exercise, or projects at work, I now plainly see that the cycle.  First, there’s the initial engagement – planning, deciding, creating and the first round of being in action.  It’s an interesting time and a time of possibility and challenge.  Second, the “dog days” – now the endeavor is well underway but seems tedious.  The excitement of newness has worn off.  It has the feeling of simply going through the motions towards a conclusion.  Third, the end is approaching – here’s where the addiction to anxiety is served.  Now it has to get done – there’s an exam, a paper, a performance, or a deadline.  The anxiety peptides are released.  Focus and concentration are totally in play.  It’s about survival.

It’s about Will.  Exercising Will.  That’s the “persistent, continuous” action from the blueprint builder.  Desire fades in the face of the tedium.  It’s the heat of the Desire that must be maintained and the clarity of the image of the Definite Purpose.  (Hannel:   All mental discovery and attainment are the result of desire plus concentration; desire is the strongest mode of action; the more persistent the desire, the more authoritative the revelation. Desire added to concentration will wrench any secret from nature.)

Hannel (Week 11):

To review:

Inductive reasoning is the process of the objective mind, by which we compare a number of separate instances with one another until we see the common factor that gives rise to them all. We see people in every civilized country on the globe, securing results by some process which they do not seem to understand themselves, and to which they usually attach more or less mystery. Our reason is given to us for the purpose of ascertaining the law by which these results are accomplished.

The operation of this thought process is seen in those fortunate natures that possess everything that others must acquire by toil, who never have a struggle with conscience because they always act correctly, and can never conduct themselves otherwise than with tact, learn everything easily, complete everything they begin with a happy knack, live in eternal harmony with themselves, without ever reflecting much what they do, or ever experiencing difficulty or toil.

The fruit of this thought is, as it were, a gift of the gods, but a gift which few as yet realize, appreciate, or understand. The recognition of the marvelous power which is possessed by the mind under proper conditions and the fact that this power can be utilized, directed, and made available for the solution of every human problem is of transcendental importance.

Hannel (Week 17)

Desire is largely subconscious; conscious desire rarely realizes its object when the latter is out of immediate reach. Subconscious desire arouses the latent faculties of the mind, and difficult problems seem to solve themselves.

 The subconscious mind may be aroused and brought into action in any direction and made to serve us for any purpose, by concentration. The practice of concentration requires the control of the physical, mental, and physical being; all modes of consciousness whether physical, mental, or physical, must be under control.

Me:

Chapter 11 describes the ideal:  those fortunate natures that possess everything that others must acquire by toil, who never have a struggle with conscience because they always act correctly, and can never conduct themselves otherwise than with tact, learn everything easily, complete everything they begin with a happy knack, live in eternal harmony with themselves . . . 

It appears to me that the heat of the Desire of those fortunate natures must be burning “white hot” and with the Sun-like brilliance of the image they hold of their Definite Purpose.

Thus, faithfulness to the disciplines of the MKE is the way through the “dog days of summer” syndrome (Week 17) – fueling my Desire with emotions and enthusiasm; and focusing the image of my Definite Purpose with repetition.

Greatest Salesman: 

I concentrate my energy on the challenge of the moment and my actions help me to forget all else.

Hannel:

Continuous concentration means an even, unbroken flow of thought and is the result of patient, persistent, persevering and well-regulated system.

(Y)ou should be so interested in your thought, so engrossed in your subject, as to be conscious of nothing else. Such concentration leads to intuitive perception and immediate insight into the nature of the object concentrated upon.

Me:

The ability to concentrate has two dimensions for me.

I am able to concentrate on the challenge of the moment and all else does fall away.   However, my concentration is like a fire-hose held by a fireman.  It’s directed to the center of the hottest fire (even now, I’m finishing this because it’s overdue and immediately upon its conclusion I must return to putting out a fire at work).   My anxiety peptide addiction is still beings served.

However, the “continuous concentration . . . a result of patient, persistent, persevering and well-regulated system” is the dimension of concentration that I can improve.  It’s the concentration as a marathon – or, as we are developing, a progression.  Or as Og said, “Always I take another step.  If that is of no avail, I take another, and yet another.  In truth, one step at a time is not too difficult.”

I persist until I succeed.

 

Master Key – Week 16

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

Hannel:

Through an understanding and conscious operation of spiritual laws, we can convert every seeming difficulty into a blessing.

Whatever enters the mind through the senses or the objective mind will impress the mind and result in a mental image which will become a pattern for the creative energies. These experiences are largely the result of environment, chance, past thinking and other forms of negative thought, and must be subjected to careful analysis before being entertained. On the other hand, we can form our own mental images, through our own interior processes of thought regardless of the thoughts of others, regardless of exterior conditions, regardless of environment of every kind, and it is by the exercise of this power that we can control our own destiny, body, mind and soul.

It is by the exercise of this power that we take our fate out of the hands of chance, and consciously make for ourselves the experiences which we desire, because when we consciously realize a condition, that condition will eventually manifest in our lives; it is therefore evident that in the last analysis thinking is the one great cause in life.

The Greatest Salesman:

(N)ow I know a great secret of life for I perceive, a last, that all my problems, discouragements, and heartaches are, in truth, great opportunities in disguise.

I am nature’s greatest miracle.

And nature know not defeat.  Eventually, she emerges victorious and so will I, and with each victory the next struggle becomes less difficult.

Me:

Harmony is elusive . . . .

I appreciate that getting as far as this – however imperfect it may be – has been acknowledged.  That having stayed with the process this far, means I’m on the right path and must finish.  I get that it’s already in me.   I’m exercising my will with the exercises and readings.   But the environment, chance, past thinking and other forms of negative thought seem to push back with equal effort.  These things are in me also.  These things aren’t going quietly.  These things aren’t receding.  They are fighting for their survival just as hard as I am seeking to displace them.  It’s a mess right now.

The moment is a masterpiece . . .

And when am I going to have the time to do it over . . .

Master Key – Week 15 – In process . . .

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

This blog is late.

Reading Chapter 15 may prove to be my watershed moment in the MKE.  Only time will tell but it certain feels that way.  When I went back to highlight this chapter, it turns out it would have been more appropriate to have highlighted what I did not want to reread.

So much is both brought together and introduced in this chapter . . .   My head is swirling.  Just wanted the beautiful, exciting maelstrom within me to be documented until I refined my observations . . .

Hannel:

If we wish our ideal to be beautiful or strong, we must see that the words out of which this temple will eventually be created are exact, that they are put together carefully, because accuracy in building words and sentences is the highest form of architecture in civilization and is a passport to success.

Me:

Thanks to the planning and guidance of the MKMMA, my Definite Major Purpose (“DMP”) – my future self – stands ready to be merged with and into my present self.

For this, I am grateful.

Hannel:

(H)e who “is wise enough to understand” will readily recognize that the creative power of thought places an invincible weapon in his hands and makes him a master of destiny.  In the physical world there is a law of compensation which is that “the appearance of a given amount of energy anywhere means the disappearance of the same amount somewhere else,” and so we find that we can get only what we give; if we pledge ourselves to a certain action we must be prepared to assume the responsibility for the development of that action.

For this reason Insight must be exercised so that the thought which we entertain contains no mental, moral or physical germ which we do not wish objectified in our lives.

Insight is a faculty of the mind whereby we are enabled to examine facts and conditions at long range, a kind of human telescope; it enables us to understand the difficulties, as well as the possibilities, in any undertaking.

Insight enables us to be prepared for the obstacles which we shall meet; we can therefore overcome them before they have any opportunity of causing difficulty.

Insight enables us to plan to advantage and turn our thought and attention in the right direction, instead of into channels which can yield no possible return.

 Insight enables us to plan to advantage and turn our thought and attention in the right direction, instead of into channels which can yield no possible return.

Insight is a product of the world within and is developed in the Silence, by concentration.

Me:

Wow!  Insight . . .

  • Temper “insight” – two-edged sword
  • “must be exercised so that . . . “ – appears to be acknowledging that “insight”, like our subconscious, is always in play.  It’s how it’s in play, or being exercised, that is key.
    • Magnifying glass & compass again
    • If untamed and misdirected, feeds fear by always focusing on what could go wrong; feeds the Anxiety Peptide Addiction
  • Anticipatory – can feed anxiety (future based) peptide addiction
  • Can also provide best route to navigate to DMP – key is the compass – it directs where and on what the magnifying glass is to be focused
  • Filter – how to view the obstacles encountered – looking for the seed of equivalent benefit
  • All obstacles are for growth and good
  • “The thirteenth principles is known as The Sixth Sense, through which Infinite Intelligence may and will communicate voluntarily, without any effort from, or demands by the individual. Understanding the Sixth Sense comes only by meditation through mind development from within.”
  • When you gain insight, you are using your intuition, or sixth sense.
  • clear or deep perception of a situation
  • the clear (and often sudden) understanding of a complex situation
  • a feeling of understanding
  • grasping the inner nature of things intuitively
  • Synonyms: sixth sense

Hannel:

All conditions and experiences that come to us are for our benefit; that we gain strength in proportion to the effort expended, and that our happiness is best attained through a conscious cooperation with natural laws.

All the great eternal forces act in solemn silence, but it is in our power to place ourselves in harmony with them and thus express a life of comparative peace and happiness.

Growth is attained through an exchange of the old for the new, of the good for the better; it is a conditional or reciprocal action, for each of us is a complete thought entity and this completeness makes it possible for us to receive only as we give.

We are able to consciously control our conditions as we come to sense the purpose of what we attract, and are able to extract from each experience only what we require for our further growth. Our ability to do this determines the degree of harmony or happiness we attain.

All conditions and experiences that come to us do so for our benefit. Difficulties and obstacles will continue to come until we absorb their wisdom and gather from them the essentials of further growth.

Me:

  • New floors in office & bedroom
    • Obstacles – time, theft, emotion
    • But exchange old for new
    • Insight – two edged sword
    • Magnifying glass – how focus on obstacle
    • Compass
      • fear/security based direction
      • growth direction
      • determines whether obtain benefit or detriment from obstacle/challenge or that for which the old is exchanged
  • The floor in my office . . . out with the old and in with the new
  • Napoleon Hill:  ‘Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit.’
  • Horn/Music:  The challenge of the loaner horn directed me to plan/focus to most efficiently restore/grow my “chops”
  • Compass and Magnifying Glass facilitated by Insight – course corrections
  • APA is going to keep showing up until I grow out of it.
    • “Do not wait: the time will never be ‘just right’. Start where you stand, and work whatever tools you may have at your command and better tools will be found as you go along.”
    • Example:  Business emphasis of NWM company not where my intuition suggests (disappointment because seems to be slightly off track from the larger purpose of the Company) but my insight is that still a place to start and build to the larger vision.  (My intuition (“sixth sense”) is that our founder and CVO is of the same feeling and is pursuing this course with the same perspective.)
    • I can’t steer the ship without being in it and being a significant contributor to its momentum.

Master Key – Week 14

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

This blog is just slightly late.

Hannel:

If you wish harmonious conditions in your life, you must develop an harmonious mental attitude.

 

Your world without will be a reflection of your world within.

Me:

“Sitting” on “Harmony” the insight came to me that this is my front-line in my MKE seeking to “Outwit the Devil.”

To give myself credit, early on in the DMP process, while I DMP seeks to replace one income producing activity with another, I realized that as long as my current source of income was critical to providing for my family, it had to be part of my DMP in a harmonious, positive, forward-looking manner.   It seemed important to me to have internal harmony between where I wanted to go and where I was going to be along the way.

What I haven’t seen until “sitting” on “Harmony” this week, is that, as an Anxiety Peptide Addict, I’m feeding my addiction by falling behind in my posts and participation in the mastermind aspects of the MKE.  I started to figure it out last week in a late blog post (see Week 6).  But in the context of Harmony, I see that the internal disharmony fostered by my addition to Anxiety Peptides must be eliminated.

Hannel:

Remember that the law of growth necessarily governs every manifestation in the objective, so that a denial of unsatisfactory conditions will not bring about instant change. A plant will remain visible for some time after its roots have been cut, but it will gradually fade away and eventually disappear, so the withdrawal of your thought from the contemplation of unsatisfactory conditions will gradually, but surely, terminate these conditions.

Me:

I believe my starting point to starve out my addiction to Anxiety Peptides, is adapting Wallace Wattles/Mark J’s mantra, “The world is perfect for where it has evolved but just incomplete.” as follows:

I am perfect for where I have evolved but just incomplete.

And also keep asking myself the critical 9 words:

What did I do right?  What can I improve?

Hannel:

If you enter into the discipline necessary to bring about a radical change in your life, you must do so deliberately, after giving the matter careful thought and full consideration, and then you must allow nothing to interfere with your decision.

This discipline, this change of thought, this mental attitude will not only bring you the material things which are necessary for your highest and best welfare, but will bring health and harmonious conditions generally.

Me:

As we’ve been told many times, awareness is the beginning of change.

Now that I plainly see the seemingly “Catch-22″ (but not really) of my Anxiety Peptide addiction, I’ll use the tools we’ve been given expressly create new associations and take greater care in exercising my will.

I am perfect . . . but incomplete.

Harmony be the journey . . .

Master Key – Week 13

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

Hannel:

What you and I desire, what we all desire, what everyone is seeking, is Happiness and
Harmony. If we can be truly happy we shall have everything the world can give. If we are happy ourselves we can make others happy.

But we cannot be happy unless we have, health, strength, congenial friends, pleasant environment, sufficient supply, not only to take care of our necessities but to provide for those comforts and luxuries to which we are entitled.

How are we to get the actual, tangible results here and now?

In the first place, we must put our knowledge into practice.  Nothing can be accomplished in any other way. The athlete may read books and lessons on physical training all his life, but unless he begins to give out strength by actual work he will never receive any strength; he will eventually get exactly what he gives; but he will have to give it first.

Thought is a spiritual activity and is therefore creative, but make no mistake, thought will create nothing unless it is consciously, systematically, and constructively directed; and herein is the difference between idle thinking, which is simply a dissipation of effort, and constructive thinking, which means practically unlimited achievement.

Michelangelo and the Statue of David

As an example of the power of imagination, I’ve heard it said that Michelangelo looked at the block of marble and saw the statute of David.  And that statute is a plain effect of the cause that was Michelangelo’s thoughts and imagination.

Here’s the rest of the story:

Michelangelo was asked by the consuls of the Board to complete an unfinished project begun in 1464 by Agostino di Duccio and later carried on by Antonio Rossellino in 1475. Both sculptors had in the end rejected an enormous block of marble due to the presence of too many “taroli”, or imperfections, which may have threatened the stability of such a huge statue. 

Rossellino’s contract was terminated in 1475, and the block of marble remained neglected for 26 years, all the while exposed to the elements in the yard of the cathedral workshop. This was of great concern to the authorities, as such a large piece of marble not only was costly but represented a large amount of labor and difficulty in its transportation to Florence.  In 1500, an inventory of the cathedral workshops described the piece as “a certain figure of marble called David, badly blocked out and supine.”

A year later (1501), documents showed that the authorities were determined to find an artist who could take this large piece of marble and turn it into a finished work of art.  They ordered the block of stone, which they called The Giant, “raised on its feet” so that a master experienced in this kind of work might examine it and express an opinion.

This is the block of marble that confronted Michelangelo.  An enormous block of marble (the finished statute is about 17 feet tall); intrinsically flawed at the outset; badly exposed to, and potentially deteriorated by, sitting out in all kinds of weather for almost 26 years; and already poorly started by the failed efforts of another artist with an entirely different conception of the statute.  But the purpose of this block of marble was unique; it was it’s own purpose – to be the Statute of David.

It wasn’t a blank, fresh piece marble.  This makes Michelangelo’s ability to imagine (thought) and create the statute of David all that more remarkable.

At this stage in the MKE and with the insights we’ve been provided thus far, I now see myself as both the block of marble and as Michelangelo.

As the block of marble, I, with my human frailties, have 62 years of open, unguarded exposure to all the weather of life; shaped by the unfiltered influence of family, friends, and employers due to ignorance of my own true interests; and conceived in love and brought forth for a purpose.

As Michelangelo, it is my commission to bring out of block of marble I am the statute of David I desire to be.

It took Michelangelo 2 years of persistent, continuous action to complete the statute of David.  And he didn’t bring David straight out of the marble.  There was trial and error with terra cotta and wax models (thinking and imagination) – continuous practice and repetition of each component of the statute (application of knowledge and skill) – before he applied the cause of his imagination and left only the marble that was David.

I’m not blocking out two years for my process.  I am eager to accomplish my desires as quickly as possible.   I am demanding of myself serene, persistent, continuous action toward my desired (imagined) achievements – and keeping my promise to render such action.  And I am simply giving myself permission to remember that all my problems, discouragements, and heartaches along the way, are in truth, great opportunities in disguise.

The World is perfect just not complete.

I am perfect just not complete.

 

 

Master Key – Week 11

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

Hannel:

To review:

Inductive reasoning is the process of the objective mind, by which we compare a number of separate instances with one another until we see the common factor that gives rise to them all. We see people in every civilized country on the globe, securing results by some process which they do not seem to understand themselves, and to which they usually attach more or less mystery. Our reason is given to us for the purpose of ascertaining the law by which these results are accomplished.

The operation of this thought process is seen in those fortunate natures that possess everything that others must acquire by toil, who never have a struggle with conscience because they always act correctly, and can never conduct themselves otherwise than with tact, learn everything easily, complete everything they begin with a happy knack, live in eternal harmony with themselves, without ever reflecting much what they do, or ever experiencing difficulty or toil.

The fruit of this thought is, as it were, a gift of the gods, but a gift which few as yet realize, appreciate, or understand. The recognition of the marvelous power which is possessed by the mind under proper conditions and the fact that this power can be utilized, directed, and made available for the solution of every human problem is of transcendental importance.

Hannel (Week 17 – taking advantage of being late with Week 11′s post and foreshadowing Week 17.  Blinding flash of the obvious:  It all ties together!)

Desire is largely subconscious; conscious desire rarely realizes its object when the latter is out of immediate reach. Subconscious desire arouses the latent faculties of the mind, and difficult problems seem to solve themselves.

 The subconscious mind may be aroused and brought into action in any direction and made to serve us for any purpose, by concentration. The practice of concentration requires the control of the physical, mental, and physical being; all modes of consciousness whether physical, mental, or physical, must be under control.

Me:

Chapter 11 describes the ideal:  those fortunate natures that possess everything that others must acquire by toil, who never have a struggle with conscience because they always act correctly, and can never conduct themselves otherwise than with tact, learn everything easily, complete everything they begin with a happy knack, live in eternal harmony with themselves . . . 

It appears to me that the heat of the Desire of those fortunate natures must be burning “white hot” and with the Sun-like brilliance of the image they hold of their Definite Purpose.

Thus, faithfulness to the disciplines of the MKE is the way through the “dog days of summer” syndrome (Week 17) - fueling my Desire with emotions and enthusiasm; and focusing the image of my Definite Purpose with repetition.

I persist until I succeed.

Master Key – Week 7

Hi!  I am Aaron G. and I am a member of Anxiety Peptide Addicts Anonymous.

This blog is late.  It’s actually January 11, 2018.  I’m catching up in Week 16.  (Note a bit of foreshadowing . . . )

Hannel:

Chapter 7:

Visualization is the process of making mental images, and the image is the mold or model which will serve as a pattern from which your future will emerge.

Make the image clear and clean-cut, hold it firmly in the mind and you will gradually and constantly bring the thing nearer to you. You can be what “you will to be.”

You must see the picture more and more complete, see the detail, and, as the details begin to unfold the ways and means for bringing it into manifestation will develop. One thing will lead to another. Thought will lead to action, action will develop methods, methods will develop friends, and friends will bring about circumstances, and, finally, the third step, or Materialization, will have been accomplished.

If you can conscientiously follow these directions,  . . .  you will develop the power of concentration which will enable you to exclude all thoughts except the ones which are associated with your purpose.

Chapter 16:

We can only see what already exists in the objective world, but what we visualize, already exists in the spiritual world, and this visualization is a substantial token of what will one day appear in the objective world, if we are faithful to our ideal. The reason for this is not difficult; visualization is a form of imagination; this process of thinking forms impressions on the mind, and these impressions in turn form concepts and ideals, and they in turn are the plans from which the Master architect will weave the future.

Me:

One component of my DMP is re-engaging with my passion for performing music and I’m already experiencing what Hannel describes above.  Here’s the story . . .

(M)ethods will develop friends . . . 

My horn (I play tenor sax), was only limping along as I hadn’t played it much the last 14 years; pads weren’t sealing, corks were falling away, etc.  It’s a vintage horn and shouldn’t be worked on by just any instrument repair shop.  14 years ago I knew who could do the job.   He was a master instrument repairman and a master maker of custom mouthpieces – serving many of the jazz greats.   He and I had become good friends back then and he really helped me get the most out of my horns back then.  When I stopped playing, I lost touch with him.  I tried to call him to work on my horn again but he was out of business.

That lead me to wondering about switching to a newer horn.  I would randomly poke around the internet looking at the plethora (and I do mean a lot!) of horns out there.  Well, surprise!  Surprise!  I came across a new horn that listed my friend as one of the designers!

I called him.  It was like the 14 years never happened.  He remembered me immediately.  He was still practicing out of the book I wrote.  He remembered my horn.

(A)nd friends will bring about circumstances . . .

Without hesitation, I overnighted my horn to him and he sent me back one of the horns he had helped design as a loaner (and for my feedback).

It took him a while to get to my horn.  In the meantime I worked with the loaner horn because, after laying off for almost 14 years,  I had a lot of practicing to do to even just restore my previous level of proficiency.  (Knowledge does not apply itself.   Do the thing.  Get the power.  Don’t do the thing.  Lose the power.)

Well, the loaner horn was too different from my vintage horn – especially the “pinky” keys.   (Literally, the keys controlled by the “pinky” fingers.)  But, I had promised my friend that I’d give this horn a go.  That lead me to focusing on how the loaner horn challenged me the most – the lower “pinky” keys.

If you can conscientiously follow these directions,  . . .  you will develop the power of concentration which will enable you to exclude all thoughts except the ones which are associated with your purpose.

This is where it all feeds together.  As an improviser, I have to regain my familiarity and dexterity across all keys – that’s a lot to review and “re-practice”.   Also, playing a wind instrument – especially a larger one – is physical.  I have to regain my wind and endurance.  (I’m still a ways away from practicing for 2 or 3 hours without tiring at all.)

Well, the challenge of playing the “pinky” keys on the loaner horn lead me to focusing on:

  • the most challenging key that used all the pinky keys
  • working the scale mode the started on the lowest note on the horn and was the lowest octave on the horn

This lead me to that insight (more on that in Chapter 15) that:

  • focusing  lowest octave for every key would build my wind back the fastest
  • it would also build my sound back the fastest
  • by starting with the hardest key, it would only get easier as I worked backwards to the easiest keys
  • once I was done working through everything key in the lowest octave, I’d switch to working through every key in the highest octave (the middle octave of the horn is the easiest to play)

Before this insight, I was struggling with how to approach not only restoring my prior level of proficiency and dexterity – but also how to quickly clearly grow beyond it.

Out of the simple challenge of the pinky keys on the loaner horn, like the architect visualizing his building seeing his building as he wishes it to be,  clearly see how I must practice and all distracting options of practice have fallen away.  I only want to follow my plan; confidently putting off all other avenues of future practice/development until my immediate course of practice is completed.

It’s exhilarating!  And tomorrow (1/12/18), I’m meeting my friend to pick up my rebuilt horn . . . a reunion with two old friends.

Greatest Salesman:  I persisted until I succeeded. . . .   In truth, one step at a time was not too difficult. . . .   I built my castle one brick at a time for I knew that small attempts, repeated, completed any undertaking.