The Way of the Peaceful Warrior and The Four Agreements

Rarely does a movie or book affect me to the point that it is life changing. “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior“, by Dan Millman,  is such a book. The movie “Avatar” was another such movie… “I  SEE You.” and “It’s hard to put in words the deep connection the People have to the forest. They see a network of energy that flows through all living things. They know that all energy is only borrowed… And one day you have to give it back.”

I personally see this energy and have since I was a child. Perhaps it is that I am an Earth sign, astrologically speaking. Or maybe it is that my father was just as connected to the earth, as were my ancestors before him. On both sides of my family we have been farmers and a farmer is intimately connected to The Mother.

Another such book is The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. Following are a few quotes from the book…

You can measure the impeccability of your word by your level of self-love. How much you love yourself and how you feel about yourself are directly proportionate to the quality and integrity of your word. When you are impeccable with your word, you feel good; you feel happy and at peace.

It is very interesting how the human mind works. We have the need to justify everything, to explain and understand everything, in order to feel safe. We have millions of questions that need answers because there are so many things that the reasoning mind cannot explain. It is not important if the answer is correct; just the answer itself makes us feel safe. This is why we make assumptions. We make all sorts of assumptions because we don’t have the courage to ask questions.

Doing your best, you are going to live your life intensely. You are going to be productive; you are going to be good to yourself, because you will be giving yourself to your family, to your community, to everything. But it is the action that is going to make you feel intensely happy. When you always do your best, you take action. Doing your best is taking the action because you love it, not because you’re expecting a reward. Most people do exactly the opposite: they only take action when they expect a reward, and they don’t enjoy the action. And that’s the reason why they don’t do their best.

Very young children are not afraid to express what they feel. They are so loving that if they perceive love, they melt into love. They are not afraid to love at all. That is the description of a normal human being. As children we are not afraid of the future or ashamed of the past. Our normal human tendency is to enjoy life, to play, to explore, to be happy, and to love. You don’t need to blame your parents for teaching you to be like them. They had no control over the programming they received, so they couldn’t have behaved any differently. The real you is still a little child who never grew up.

The freedom we are looking for is the freedom to be ourselves. For every thousand people, nine hundred and ninety-nine are completely domesticated. The first step toward personal freedom is awareness.

Whatever your faith, there are valuable lessons to be learned in this book. We are all far more similar than dissimilar, and people are people wherever you go. As Aristotle said, “It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it.”

Keep an open mind like an open net when you read this book and you may be surprised what falls into it. Someone once told me to remember that the mind is like a parachute: it only works when it’s open.

Following are quotes from The Way of the Peaceful Warrior. I hope they impact people as much as they have impacted me.

“The pleasure from eating is more than the taste of the food and the feeling of a full belly. Learn to enjoy the entire process – the hunger beforehand, the careful preparation, setting an attractive table, chewing, breathing, smelling, tasting, swallowing, and the feeling of lightness and energy after the meal. You can even enjoy the full and easy elimination of the food after its digested. When you pay attention to all the elements of the process, you’ll being to appreciate simple meals.”

“There is a saying: “When you sit, sit; when you stand, stand; whatever you do, don’t wobble.” Once you make your choice, do it with all your spirit. Don’t be like the preacher who thought about praying while making love to his wife, and thought about making love to his wife while praying.”

“There are no ordinary moments.”
“There is no need to search; achievement leads to nowhere. It makes no difference at all, so just be happy now! Love is the only reality of the world, because it is all One, you see. And the only laws are paradox, humor, and change. There is no problem, never was, and never will be. Release your struggle, let go of your mind, throw away your concerns, and relax into the world. No need to resist life; just do your best. Open your eyes and see that you are far more than you imagine. You are the world, you are the universe; you are yourself and everyone else too! It’s all the marvelous Play of God. Wake up, regain your humor. Don’t worry, you are already free!”

“The secret of happiness, you see, is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.”

“It is better for you to take responsibility for your life as it is, instead of blaming others, or circumstances, for your predicament. As your eyes open, you’ll see that your state of health, happiness, and every circumstance of your life has been, in large part, arranged by you — consciously or unconsciously.”

“Stressful thoughts reflect a conflict with reality. Stress happens when the mind resists what is.”

“Fear and sorrow inhibit action; anger generates it. When you learn to make proper use of your anger, you can change fear and sorrow to anger, then turn anger to action. That’s the body’s secret of internal alchemy.”

“Meditation consists of two simultaneous processes: One is insight — paying attention to what is arising. The other is surrender — letting go of attachment to arising thoughts. This is how you cut free of the mind.”

Act happy, be happy, without a reason in the world. Then you can love, and do what you will.”

“Life is not suffering; it’s just that you will suffer it, rather than enjoy it, until you let go of your mind’s attachments and just go for the ride freely, no matter what happens.”

“If you don’t get what you want, you suffer; if you get what you don’t want, you suffer; even when you get exactly what you want, you still suffer because you can’t hold on to it forever. Your mind is your predicament. It wants to be free of change, free of pain, free of the obligations of life and death. But change is a law, and no amount of pretending will alter that reality.”

“Old urges continue to arise, but urges do not matter; only actions do. A warrior is as a warrior does.”

“To rid yourself of old patterns, focus all your energy not on struggling with the old, but on building the new.” “How can I control my habits if I can’t even seem to control my emotions?” “You don’t need to control emotion,” he said. “Emotions are natural, like passing weather. Sometimes it’s fear, sometimes sorrow or anger. Emotions are not the problem. The key is to transform the energy of emotion into constructive action.”


About lantanagurl

Farmstress, Adventuress, Spiritual Junkie, Community Builder, Social Justice Activist, Momma and Grandmomma :)
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5 Responses to The Way of the Peaceful Warrior and The Four Agreements

  1. Great post….I too loved the Four Agreements. I’ll need to check out the Way of the Peaceful Warrior. Thanks for sharing. Dave

  2. I’ve read and loved both books. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Pingback: acknowledging anger’s function (since a whole spirit is inclusive) « JRFibonacci's blog: partnering with reality

  4. Michelle says:

    I haven’t read The Way of the Peaceful Warrior, but my son has a copy in my extra room. I hope he reads it, but maybe I should. I think I read The Four Agreements, but a long time ago, so I’ll check both books out again.

    I love this post, your style, and the way you think 🙂

    Peace and Blessings.

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