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Zen & Stoic Life Principles: Principle 7: One Thing that You Shouldn’t Let Your Enemy Take From You

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Understanding: The One Thing that You Shouldn’t Let Your Enemy Take From You [Stoic Life Principle 7] One of the most important things in life that ca...

Дата загрузки:2022-09-03T15:55:09+0000

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Understanding: The One Thing that You Shouldn’t Let Your Enemy Take From You [Stoic Life Principle 7]

One of the most important things in life that can decide our success or failure is our focus. What we focus upon has the ability to shape and create our inner and external reality.

If we focus on sad things, we tend to become sad. If we focus on critical things, we tend to become more critical of ourselves and people around us. Similarly, when we focus on positive things, we tend to feel more positive & exhilarated.

For instance, people who focus on critical things tend to become more critical towards themselves and others. As a result, they are sometimes shunned by people because of their hurtful & critical remarks. Their internal focus not only shape their inner reality (and personality) but also shape their outer reality through behavior. Circumstances created through negative internal attitudes then tend to further aggravate the inner negative state creating a vicious cycle of, negative out and negative in.

We can understand the power of focus through a small experiment. Think about something you like to eat. Picture it in detail, the colors, the texture, all the fine details. Think about the last time you ate that food. The chances are, you will soon find yourself salivating and craving for that food. Now, think about some issue, or challenge, or perhaps a test or an important presentation that you have to face in the future. Observe how your body reacts to your new focus. Then, change your focus to something erotic. Picture it in detail. Observe how your body reacts to your new focus. This small experiment shows how your body reacts to your focus. Throughout your whole life, your body reacts to everything that you focus on. Every cell in your body is ready, alert and reactive to your focus.

In one of the parables about Buddha, it is said that when he was in deep meditation just before attaining enlightenment, three beautiful women, sent by Mara (the king of death), appeared before him. Dancing in a seductive manner they begged him for his attention. But Gauthama did not take his mind off his goal. He reached enlightenment. If the distraction had somehow succeeded, he would have lost his focus and not attained his goal. This parable contains an important lesson. It is about not losing focus on your primary goals in life. Another important lesson associated with this parable is that your focus is the primary target of those who want to oppose you in life.

Those who want to see you fail in life will inevitably rely upon this one ancient tactic of attacking your focus. Your enemies will oppose you by trying to distract you from your goals. They know that if your focus is affected, that you can be easily taken off your path. And most of the times, insults, false accusations, false rumors and gossip stories are made and spread by people exactly for this purpose. If they can make you take your focus off your goals and get you focused on defending yourself against false accusations and attacks, without even knowing it, you will be taken off your path.

Ultimately, remember that what you focus on throughout your life will determine your overall health, wealth & happiness. Focus is also the key to health; this is the reason why Buddhist monks train their minds to focus on kindness and compassion through kindness meditation.

So, keep this principle in mind, if you are focused on your goals, hopes and dreams, no one will be able to stop you from achieving them in your life. Do not get distracted by passing events. As the Stoic-philosopher Epictetus pointed out, keep your focus on your primary goal and be ready to leave everything else and run towards your goal when the time and moment is right. Understanding this principle is an important lesson in life. So, make sure to keep it your mind and also, if possible, to teach it to your children and friends.

More reading material available here: https://thewayofrealization.blogspot.com/
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