"When I forget my ways, I am in The Way"

Philosophical and experiential notes on Nothingness, with supporting insights from martial arts, quantum physics and Taoism


19 May 2013

Harmony: birth of the roadmap





The Seven Fundamental Principles for Standing in the Face of the Truth
An Introduction

When we don't have harmony in our lives and our world, we are suffering from some kind of imbalance. As we strive to improve our relationship to the world and within ourselves, we reach out to family and friendship, exercise and nutrition, and religion and meditation for solace. 'Balance and Harmony' is an often-used phrase that sounds good on paper but isn't always so easy to achieve.

Interestingly, quietly residing between those two seven letter words lays a simple three letter word - 'and.' As we shall see, it's all in the 'and,' because hiding in that modest conjunction are five secrets to improved balance and harmony.

Years ago my teacher (Sensei) related he had been thinking a great deal about the term balance and harmony, noting that the phrase is tossed about quite a bit. He had been observing how people often have a hard time finding balance in their lives, and that they have an equally hard time transitioning to harmony. He emphasized that while the two words are often used as synonyms they are actually two completely different principles.

Pondering what was preventing people from finding balance and then making the transition to harmony, his questions became a serious study. He found himself wondering what it was that resided between balance and harmony. In a succinct moment of realization, he began to focus on the three letter word ‘and’.

In time he came to understand that a seemingly insignificant word actually represented five principles, and that the word ‘and’ was a transitional word in a much larger sense then had ever been imagined. For within that word resided five naturally flowing universal principles that reliably transition us from balance to harmony. If we are not in harmony, it is because we are stuck on one or more of the other principles.

With an understanding of how the principles work, including their interrelationships, there now existed, perhaps for the first time, a roadmap to achieving better harmony in our lives. Eventually, these principles became known as The Seven Fundamental Principles for Standing in the Face of the Truth. [1]

Brilliantly ordered and crafted, together these principles teach us how to stand in the face of the Truth, including how to face our inner demons and outer critics. Each principle successively reveals that we can not only be successful navigating the unknown, but that we have a universal, principle-based 'GPS guidance system' to take along anytime we go there.