Are You Choosing Your Paradigms – Day 230 of 365 Days to a Better You

Do you create your own paradigms or are you a tenant farmer for someone eles’s paradigms? What do I mean?

I’ve noted that there are three kinds of people when it comes to paradigms.

  1. Buyers – There are people who buy completely into their inherited cultural paradigms. Their country is the best. Their inherited religion is the best. Their inherited political party is the best, etc. They’ve never considered another point of view for a second or questioned their own assumptions.
  2. Rejectors – There are people who have thought a little more about it. Their solution is to completely reject every inherited paradigm and believe something as totally opposite as they can find.
  3. Seekers – There is a third group that has thought more deeply than either of the other two. It doesn’t mean they’re more correct than the other two. It simply means they’ve put their inherited paradigms to the test rather merely accepting them at face value. They’ve avoided or transcended the impulse to simply reject them. They’ve taken what works through testing and applied that to their life. They’ve staked out their own ground, their own paradigm.

I’m not judging any of the groups. Each can find their way in this world. Experience tells me these groups break down about 75 percent, 20 percent, five percent respectively.

The easiest road is to be the buyer. You get plenty of emotional support and reinforcement in your circle for making that choice and staying true to it. You are, though, what I called above a tenant farmer living on ideas decided upon by others for you.

It’s harder to break free from the gravity of the buyer impulse and become a rejector. You set yourself up for social ostracism and lack of understanding from family and friends in the buyer category. You feel like a rebel, but you still haven’t chosen anything. You’ve only wholesale rejected the buyers in your culture. Thus, your paradigm is still decided by theirs because you’re going to reject it whatever it is.

Seekers are people who saw through the provincialism of the buyer mindset. No one group has all the good ideas. They probably passed through a rejector stage where they used rejection to break free. Eventually, though, they evolved to a thought-space of their own choosing. It was born from experience, trial and error, and insight.

Seekers may not be enlightened beings yet, but they have taken the two critical steps on that road.

So, I ask you again. Do you create your own paradigms or are you a tenant farmer for someone eles’s paradigms?

I deeply appreciate you stopping by and spending part of your day on this blog. You’re awesome!

Find your bliss. Experience your bliss. Become your bliss.

Ray

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Are YOU the Change YOU Want to See in the World?


Today’s Affirmation:
Today I choose an open heart over a narrow mind.

As you know, I try to keep things on the positive side in this blog. Sometimes, though, certain things need to be said. Hang with me. I promise I bring this back to the positive in the end.

Mark Twain once wrote, “There are times when one would like to hang the whole human race, and finish the farce.”

I admit to feeling a bit like this in recent days, as I watch the global uproar over the film Innocence of Muslims and, frankly, just the pettiness going on among nations, religions, and people right now. I’m having a a Twain moment this morning and so I decided to write it out and share it with you.

I have a plan for world peace. It involves the kind people of Australia evacuating their fine continent for six months – I figure that’s about what it will take. A free plane to ticket there for every hyper-nationalist, radical (well, you name the religion), political “leader” who loves playing generalissimo, media personality who loves to glorify, excuse, and fan the flames.

The plan is to send all these groups to Australia – all expenses paid. They are allowed to have whatever weapons they want minus chemical, biological, and nuclear.

We let them have their Armageddon Nirvana to their heart’s content – have it out once and for all about who knows the mind of God, who has the only right political or economic ideology.

After six months, we all pitch in and pay to rebuild the beautiful country of Australia and the other 90% of the people on this planet get on about the business of building positive future for humanity.

Admittedly, that plan is probably too expensive and a little mean-spirited – though it gives the angry, violent, and doctrinaire among us precisely what they say they want. A far simpler plan could be to make four simple words our mantra: Live and let live.

I know, I know. It’s crazy difficult not to make films that blatantly disregard other people’s faith. It’s lunatic fringe not to take to the streets and kill innocent people in response. It’s dreamland that two great nations like China and Japan could agree to share islands that lie halfway between them and develop their resources together. It’s out of the question for the leaders of Iran and Israel to show a little humility, humanity, and respect for each other rather than constant threats. It’s silly to think that world’s greatest superpower wouldn’t be involved in covert and not so covert actions to destabilize regions and overthrow governments.

I mean, this is the world we have right now. It’s torn right out of the headlines. Is this the world that you want or I want? Is this the world we want to pass along to our children and grandchildren? Are these the mindsets we want to percolate in our brains bringing us ever new nightmares?

I already know your question. I’m one person. What can I do? You can refuse to participate. Refuse to participate myopic group-think. Refuse to participate in religious, ethnic, or nationalistic acrimony. Refuse to participate in violence that harms other human beings, no matter how they have offended you. Even in your individual life, you can demonstrate respect for those who disagree with you and teach your children to do the same. Hatred is a fire and the first person consumed in that fire is the hater.

There’s a story of a conquering king who went to see a Buddhist monk to see what the most important teaching is. The monk replied, “Do no evil, do only good. Purify your heart.” The king retorted, “Every child of 5 knows that.” “Yes,” replied the monk, “but few men of 80 can live it.”

Let us all work today to be part of the few who do. Let us allow these events to propel us to something better – who we are truly capable of being as people and as a species. Let us cease playing our role in mindless and repeating nighmares that bring suffering to us all.

Every child of five knows this. Are you one of those who will get it before you turn 80?

Peace and prosperity to each and everyone of you!

Ray

Obama Nomination Fulfills American Dream – But Will He Live Up to Promised Change? – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday June 4, 2008

 

This morning all Americans can take pride in the fact that we have taken a step forward. The promise of the American political system has been, for the moment, realized.

With the apparent nomination of Democratic Senator Barack Obama for President of the United States, America has finally moved beyond a past filled with hypocrisy on such issues.

Change is a wonderful, positive thing. Promised, but unrealized, change can be very demoralizing. The American people (and the world) are eager for an American President to bring the former right now, but are understandably wary of more unfulfilled promises and false hopes. 

So which kind of president would Barack Obama be?

He says the right things.

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we’ve been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.”

BARACK OBAMA, speech, Feb. 5, 2008

 

We are at an historic moment. For better or worse, Barack Obama stands at the center of that moment. What Barack Obama decides to do with his historic opportunity remains to be seen.

He swept through the primary season calling for change, change, and more change. Given the status quo on many topics, it’s not hard to see why people are clamoring for change.

Obama’s challenge is to demonstrate that his brand of change goes beyond WHO he is and translates to what he will DO. While his milestone victory is exciting, what he will do for this country is of much more lasting concern. Does he truly recognize the issues of the day and is he willing to transcend political orthodoxy to address them?

Among the questions Mr. Obama will have to answer:

  • Does he understand that Americans want energy options that empower them to make smarter energy choices for the environment? They do not want an environmental nanny state that monitors and taxes every out breath.
  • Does he understand that Americans want to work with our neighbors while maintaining the integrity of our borders?
  • Does  he understand that Americans are willing participants in a global economy, but that the benefits must flow both ways?
  • Does he truly understand the folly that has been U.S. foreign policy in the Middle East and elsewhere or does he think he can just implement in a “smarter” way ala John Kerry in 2004?
  • Will he hold to his promise to use meaningful dialogue to resolve world issues or will he bullied by his advisors into “acting presidential” and continuing the easy use of the marines to solve all problems?
  • Does he plan to abruptly reverse The USA Patriot Act and other unconstitutional directions that the nation has been going or will he remain silent and allow them to continue?
  • Does he have a strategy for bringing monetary policy back into the control of the American people, our representatives, and The Constitution?
  • Will he give the American people a say in multinational agreements now in process that impact our lives? Will he implement a transparent process for these discussions?
  • Is there really any difference in electing him over John McCain? Is there really any difference between the two major parties or have they merged into a kind of two-headed establishment party?
  • In two years, will we be able to tell the difference between his policies and George W. Bush’s? Will they be making a positive difference in our lives?

These are REAL questions and the jury is clearly out on these and many more issues important to the American people.

The American people want a real change in direction and not just a change in the messenger. We want action not lip service on those changes. We want specifics not broad generalities.

The voters’ challenge, especially those who have helped create the Obama tsunami, is to test the level of change he truly represents. It is the American voters’ responsibility to demand substance and commitment to that change. “Better than McCain” is not an acceptable measure for our next leader. We have gone down that road before and we have found only disappointment. 

Congratulations, Mr. Obama! Today you can take pride in your accomplishment and we in ours. Tomorrow the proving begins. Are you an agent for change or just the appearance of it? We are all looking forward to finding out.

Stay inspired!

Ray

What Does God Look Like? – The Affirmation Spot for Saturday March 8, 2008


ray_launchpad.jpgWhat Ray’s reading right now:

April and I are reading A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose. This is the latest Oprah’s Book Club selection. Oprah and the author Eckhart Tolle are hosting a 10-week online course covering this book. The next session is Monday March 10 at 9:00 eastern, 8:00 central time in the U.S. This week’s session covers chapter 2. You can register for free at Oprah.com


Download 2 Affirmations, Get 1 Free!

Take your positive thoughts with you wherever you go. During the month of March Download any two mp3 affirmations from The Affirmation Spot.com and get a third mp3 affirmation free. There are no limits! Simply type the word “blog” into the coupon field at checkout. Thanks for getting your audio affirmations at The Affirmation Spot! Click here to view, hear excerpts, or download affirmations.  


woman_relax_eyesclose.jpgMost Saturdays I pose a question to The Affirmation Spot readers. My goal is to give you all chance to share your ideas. Communication is two ways, not one.  I hope to keep the questions interesting and provacative.

Our whole business therefore in this life is to restore to health the eye of the heart whereby God may be seen.”

~ St. Augustine 

Today’s question is:

When you close your eyes and visualize God, what does God look like in your mind?

Click here to leave a comment describing what God looks like to you.

Be peaceful Be prosperous!

Ray

Giving Barack Obama His Due – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday February 26, 2008


Thank you for visiting The Affirmation Spot. Your comments on the blog or this article are always welcome. Please click here to comment on today’s blog.




ray_launchpad.jpgWhat Ray’s reading right now:

A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose (Oprah’s Book Club, Selection 61)




March Affirmation Sale!

Beginning February 28 Download any two affirmations during March from The Affirmation Spot.com and get a third affirmation free. There are no limits! You can download 20 and get 10 free. Simply type the word “blog” into the coupon field at checkout. Thanks for getting your audio affirmations at The Affirmation Spot!



obama.gifBarack Obama. His name seems to be on everyone’s lips these days. He has definitely been successful in (ugly marketing phrase coming) “creating buzz”.

Four years ago when he gave the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention there was talk that he might one day be a strong presidential candidate. No one anticipated it coming in this election cycle.

Afterall, Hillary Clinton was to be the next Democratic nominee and nothing in heaven or earth was going to stop her, if you listened to all the experts.

The experts did not anticipate Barack Obama. Mr. Obama is an outstanding orator. He is one of those rare speakers who can take a crowd and lift their spirits and raise their hopes. As he sweeps across the country like a Spring twister, he is doing just that to audience after audience.

What now seems inevitable is that Hillary Clinton has run into a buzzsaw of hope and optimism. The people are demanding something new and Senator Clinton only has more of the old to offer. Obama has taken 11 primaries and caucuses in a row and seems poised to leap Hillary Clinton’s Ohio-Texas firewall on his way to an historic nomination.

In previous posts, I have made clear my support for Ron Paul in this election cycle. His no nonsense and truthful description of the problems facing the United States are, in my mind, the best way forward. The Democratic big-government prescription proposed by both Obama and Clinton (as well as the big empire prescription proposed by McCain and mainline Republicans) seems to defy the Federal Reserves’ ability to print the money fast enough.

Still, I’ve listened and watched Mr. Obama with growing interest. He really does have some highly admirable characteristics as a speaker and a motivator. Many of us working in the field of human motivation and inspiration could take master lessons from him.

As Obama is now famous for saying, “Words really do matter.” People do need more voices out there offering the promise of a better tomorrow. Obama is filling a need for our nation right now. We have been desperate in recent years for a voice of hope and he is delivering. We’ve been existing on a steady diet of fear and more fear. That is toxic for a person and toxic for a nation.

Obama’s latest transgression, that has the establishment in both parties grimacing, is that he might actually talk to people on our “no talk” list. On this count, I am cheering. You cannot have peace or prosperity in the world when there are people you refuse to converse with. It is a ridiculous old line stance and Obama is rightly promising a new approach.

Barack Obama’s success, I believe, can be attributed to the fact that he is spreading rays of hope across the countryside. Even many Republicans now regard the Bush administration as years spent in the proverbial wilderness. Bringing hope in this envrionment is no small feat and deserves tremendous thanks. People are responding to Obama – the man – like flowers to the coming of Spring.

It is unfortunate that Barack believes government is the source of that hope. But for that one flaw, he might be the real deal. If we had a cabinet level position for motivation or inspiration, I think Barack Obama should be confirmed 100-0 by the Senate. There’s an idea – Secretary of Inspiration.

I wish Barack Obama only well. There is an increasing possibility that he could be the next President of the United States. From a domestic policy standpoint, that worries me. He seems a little nebulous on his position to undue the Constitutional damage created in the last few years. His spending proposals simply are not realistic given our monetary situation.

He does offer hope of a new direction in foreign policy. That is a positive that brings hope to millions. I hope he will follow through on those commitments.

However, I want to give him his due. He has added a positive perspective to this year’s election. For that, I salute him and offer my gratitude.

Be peaceful Be positive!

Ray

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What is Wisdom? – Saturday Survey Question for February 22, 2008




ray_launchpad.jpg

What Ray’s reading right now:

The Power of Kindness: The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life




Today’s affirmation is:


“I cultivate the wisdom gained through my experiences and share it to benefit the world.”



hands.gif
The Saturday Positive Thinking Survey gives readers of The Affirmation Spot an opportunity to express their views on a survey question related to positive thinking or positive change.









This week’s question

Dictionary.com defines wisdom as “the quality or state of being wise; knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight.”What is your practical definition of wisdom and where do you does your wisdom come from?


Your Answer


Share your wisdom by sharing your thoughts here.

Be Peaceful Be prosperous!

Ray

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The Affirmation Survey Update

Saturday greetings –

 Just wanted to update you on the current results from our affirmation poll. I am conducting this poll as part of the research I am doing for a book I am writing about affirmations. The survey currently consists of 10 questions.

Here are some of the interesting results thus far. Click the link below to take The Affirmation Survey.

Take the survey right now.

 

If you use affirmations or other motivational products on a regular basis, which of the following best describe when and how you use them? Select all that apply.

Answer Percentage
Before an activity (game, sales call, speech, etc.) 43%
Driving 21%
Evening 19%
Exercise 15%
Meditating 20%
Morning 64%
Praying 18%
Relaxing 27%
Working 6%

What format(s) do you usually use to get your affirmations or other motivation? Select all that apply.

Answer Percentage
Audio – CD 23%
Audio – Download 21%
Books 39%
E-mail Messagelf 20%
Verbalize to Self 45%
Write and Read 16%

Which areas of your life have you used or would you consider using affirmations to improve? Select all that apply.

Answer Percentage
Career 36%
Health and Well-Being 68%
Hobbies 17%
Learning/Education 9%
Personal Empowerment 51%
Relationships 19%
Religion/Spirituality 50%
Sales 34%
Sports 28%
Wealth and Prosperity 24%