Great, wonderful webinar yesterday. THANK YOU to everyone who participated, and again to Cheo Hodari Coker (“Luke Cage”) for taking time from a killer schedule to offer wisdom. One of the things I enjoy doing during interviews is probing for the core images and memories that empower peak performers, the people who absolutely knock it out of the park in at least one arena, without trashing the other two. It is relatively EASY to succeed in one arena of life (body, career, or relationship) but what you want to keep an eye on is the people who can juggle two or even three at a time.
Cheo is doing great, and late in the seminar he mentioned that his grandfather was a Tuskeegee Airman, one of the heroes who flew the Berlin Mission depicted at the end of “Red Wings.” And that when he thinks of the difficulties in his own life, he imagines his grandfather’s responsibilities and challenges, and not only places his own life in perspective, but realizes the strength and purpose a human being can bring to his daily life.
One of our students asked the question (and I’m approximating here): “what if you are awake, have thrown off the illusions of weakness and insufficiency programmed into you and your people for centuries, are ready…but are still powerless?”
I say that you are still asleep, DREAMING that you are awake. Still in the Matrix. You have power, once you realize that every day of your life you make decisions, and that those decisions determine your actions, and your actions determine your results.
You have power to control your emotions, by deciding what you will focus on, how you will use your body, how you use language. Your emotions fuel your actions, and your actions determine your results.
You have the power to choose your Tribe. Your associations. To focus on people who have accomplished dreams similar to yours, and determining what beliefs, values and actions empower them…and to commit to embracing the same.
You have the power to speak your truth.
You have the power to find ways to multiply the power of your efforts. Every artist seeks to do this: to take their own dreams and visions, channel them with craft, and find markets that crave that communication.
You have the power of knowing you have one life. That living small will not protect you from death. That coming to grips with this gives not only power, but courage, and purpose.
You have the power of taking control of your inner world with daily rituals of action, meditation, and thought. Starting with just five minutes. Starting with commitment to changing the world. Starting with the decision that TODAY will be a magnificent day, that YOU are made of the same stuff as the stars, that no one and nothing in the history of the universe is more important than you…but nothing is less important either. That we float between the infinitely small and the infinitely large, between intervals of time too tiny to measure, and eternity.
We are no less than the stars, and no more than ants. And that deciding, simply deciding to care about yourself, your children, your beloved, your community, your fellow human beings, and the world itself is an act of power.
No one can take that decision from you. One of the reasons I love The Matrix is that it speaks an ancient truth found in multiple philosophies and religions, one I first encountered in Tibetan Buddhism:
“You are asleep, dreaming that you are awake. As you sleep, demons feed upon your substance. They fear only your awakening, because awake, you are more powerful than you have ever dreamed.”