What I Think I Know At This Point: A Reflection in Hindsight
As of now I have been on the path of seeking to know God and his will through the study of wisdom teachers and the life and discipline set forth by Jesus Christ, in a focused manner, for about four years.
I must add that I was seeking knowledge and studying wisdom for the wrong reasons for about five years prior to the four years mentioned. Looking back the five years of “seeking to do the wrong thing the right way” only led to my understanding and conversion towards “seeking to do the right thing the right way”. And this led to a higher purpose for my living potential from which I hope to affect my environment for the greater good of humanity. My studies have led me to many new understandings and concepts over the years. I have studied Buddhism, Universal Law, and Christianity predominately. However, I have some knowledge of the teachings from other disciplines, such as, Islamic faith, Chinese Philosophy (Tao Te Ching), and Hinduism. One key piece of knowledge, that I have recently grasped as a key concept for my future developement as a Christian, is the understanding of myself as a creative being made in the image of God, which connotes “Unlimited Potential”, and that I only have to think about something in order to start the process of creation.
When I first started getting serious about knowing God I started by looking at conceptual similarities between different teachings throughout different philosophies. The word discipline is used in a lot of philosophies and is denoted as the driving force from which the philosophy is actualized. The concept of “Unlimited Potential” is a factor, that, when understood, can unlock new growth in any persons life, through discipline. Please understand, this is not a perceived notion that I felt like proposing, this is tried and proven, by myself, through my walk. Most of you know that, I, until 10-15-2014, have been in and out of prison seven times for over 20 years as a direct result of an addiction to Crack Cocaine. Furthermore, I have come to this understanding by following Jesus and now understand how these teachings, which require discipline from ones own volition, are the key.
The unlimited Potential that we are upon awakening every day is in the form of matter and energy which is inert until thought activates us into motion. Our thought is the activating agent in our lives from a free will perspective, however, this free will is not without consequences, for the law of Karma or cause and effect has us bound to the universal concepts of law (GAL 6: 7-8). That which you sew that will you also reap. Our highest potential can be realized by our following the highest order of our thinking as guided by the truth. The key to following the truth is the ability to discipline oneself so that the desires of the flesh don’t lead us astray. From the moment we awaken into conscious awareness we are being stimulated by the physical realm of existence. Through discipline we are able to take control of the mind and dictate what we are going to do, how we are going to perceive feelings, and how we are going to act, rather than react, to these feelings and thoughts. We often fall into a habitual lifestyle of following the path of least resistance which requires no discipline, and is known as the wide path which leads to death.
For one to maximize ones potential requires the control of the physical through the mind by way of discipline. One cannot aimlessly be led through life by the whims of romanticism or the desires of the flesh and expect to accomplish anything meaningful or fulfilling. Our unlimited potential is waiting to be harnessed and was exemplified through the life and teachings of Jesus through the rigorous discipline that he followed by doing God’s will, unto death, with no thought for himself (no sense of self outside of God). And to be one with God is realizing ones “unlimited potential” from which all sustainable, purposeful, and meaningful existence derives. During my time in prison I learned about meditation and the disciplining of the mind by staying in the present moment through meditation. I incorporated discipline in my life by examining the way I carried myself and viewed myself from the outside looking back at myself. This takes honesty and the ability to be critical and not rationalize anything. I began to be totally honest with myself and others. I set a time that I was going to go to bed and get up. I disciplined myself in my eating and exercise habits. I got rid of my medical restrictions and started working so that I could cultivate the virtue of being of service and enjoy it with no compensation for my work. I started brushing my teeth using my left hand even though I am right handed, to this day I brush left handed. These are just examples for reference, there’s nothing magical about it.
My desire and prayer in writing this is for each and everyone to have a greater understand of this concept for the benefit of knowledge and the ability to realize for yourselves the unlimited potential from which a truly meaningful and purposeful life, of giving in accordance with the life which was breathed into us in the beginning, may be had. We were created with the natural instincts and drives that are common to this plane of existence that would guarantee our survival and yet God knew from the beginning at the time we were given free will there was a need for the mind to have a higher source of knowledge from which to draw reference to living a purposeful life. God knew without guidance we would fall victim to sin which gives rise to evil and corruption. Therefore, our savior Jesus Christ lived and died perfectly so that we would have the opportunity for salvation through Him. We learn from His life how to be obedient and to discipline ourselves and so by doing this we are renewed in mind and able to better discern God’s Will for our own lives (ROM 12:1-2).