“The desire that guides me in all I do is the desire to harness the forces of nature to the service of mankind.” ~ Nikola Tesla
In week 14 our exercise was to concentrate on Harmony and as Mr. Hannel said, “… concentrate so deeply, so earnestly, that you will be conscious of nothing but Harmony. Remember, we learn by doing.” I know I digress from our customary erudition that is to discuss this week’s lesson, nevertheless the (2) exercises intertwined and completed each other which is the WHY of the addition. Besides last week I did a movie review which I enjoyed immensely yet I missed sharing about the 14th Weeks lesson. For the reasons above and a few which shall be unfolded the blog will have great content, grab a cup of Tea sit back and enjoy.
It can be a difficult word to define, as we all have different sets of beliefs and traditions which help us bring the thought into definition.
Those beliefs and traditions set a course and I believe that this fundamental assumption about reality for most people is why we are separate. You see your body growing up and it appears separate from others. One appears male, the other female. And our mind determines we are separate and the subconscious then approaches life with that filter, which is an “Us and them” filter. Separateness is in place we can see the evidence all around us. Christian vs. Muslim, Conservative vs. Liberal, rich vs. poor, talkative and shy, old and young, Americans and non-Americans. Once this way of thinking is in place, no matter how many teamwork books or posters on the topic you read and look at, you will not approach life from a place of Harmony or connectedness.
When we see and meet each other where is most of the person? Where you can see or where you can’t see? If you can imagine for a moment that a Human Being is like an island and like an Island most of the greater part and substance of our Island is below the water where you can’t see. And like a group of Islands it is in this unseen realm where you and I are connected just like islands under the water.
To think intensely of Harmony is to exchange our thoughts from a mental state of discordance and separation into one of beauty and being a part of something larger than ourselves.
Instead of using the filter of separateness which has us see the world as a place to be feared and that other people are objects in our way, we are choosing to have faith in the principles by which the World has been created and designed. Harmony is tuning of our lives to those around us and the natural world that sustains our wellbeing. We listen and watch so that we can move in time and join the chorus of the Great Song in which we all have a small part.
In the Silmarillion, by JRR Tolkien, the story begins with the Ainulindalë, the great song of the Ainur that took place before Time began, from which Eä, the material Universe, was created. As I meditated about harmony, this part of the book continued to enter my mind to describe our own song and chorus. Please enjoy the music video as a beautiful background to the tale below.
The Song of the Anuir
“The tale begins as Eru conceived the Ainur from his thought and taught each of them how to make music. At first the Ainur would only sing alone or in small groups while the others listened. The observance of their brethren singing taught each Ainu more about the others and the mind of Ilúvatar (Eru’s Elivish name). Their “unity and harmony” thus increased, and eventually, Eru brought all the Ainur together and declared that they would play a song greater and more complex than they had ever sung before. He told them that they would be allowed to weave their own thoughts and ideas into this Music, since they had been kindled with the Flame Imperishable and thus had the power of creativity. The Ainur were so overwhelmed by Eru’s description of this Music that they bowed before him in silence. After Ilúvatar told them about the Music, the Ainur began to fashion it. Their voices, like the sound of harps and trumpets and choirs, passed “beyond hearing” into the depths and heights of sound. The great Music filled the Timeless Halls and passed beyond them even into the Void, so that it “was not void”. The Ainur’s flawless Music satisfied even Ilúvatar during this early stage.
But soon, faults entered into the great Theme as a result of the discords of Melkor, an Ainu whose thoughts had become strange and unlike those of his brethren due to his wanderings in the Void. Ilúvatar had given the Ainur permission to weave their own ideas into the Music, but Melkor’s thoughts actually clashed against Eru’s Themes, because Melkor wanted to “increase the power and glory of the part assigned to him”. Melkor’s desire to bring into being creatures of his own with the Flame Imperishable and fill the emptiness of the Void put him at odds with Ilúvatar’s vision. These discords of Melkor that became evident in his music dismayed those around him, and many faltered in their singing or else attuned their song to his.
The original harmony of the Music was thus consumed by a “sea of turbulent sound” until it became like a “raging storm”. At that point, Eru responded by rising from his seat and raising his left hand. It seemed to the Ainur that he then smiled. After his reaction to the Music, a new Theme began amid the chaos. The Second Theme was “like and yet unlike” the First; it gathered new power and beauty. Soon, however, Melkor’s discord rose up against it, and there was a “war of sound more violent than before”. This time, Melkor’s Theme triumphed over that of the others; many of the Ainur stopped singing entirely out of dismay. Ilúvatar then rose from his seat again, his expression stern this time. He raised his right hand, and yet another Theme unfolded. The next Theme had a sound unlike the others before it. It began quietly amid the confusion of the Second Theme, and sounded like the rippling of soft and sweet notes. It gained power and depth over time, until two completely different songs were being made. One was filled with “immeasurable sorrow”, which gave it tremendous beauty, while the other was a loud, pompous theme playing in violent opposition to it. Nevertheless, this repetitive theme could not overcome the sorrowful one, and the latter merely took the former’s greatest notes and “[wove them] into its own solemn pattern”. The strife between the two themes caused the dwelling of Ilúvatar and even the Void beyond it to shake. At this point, Eru stood once more and raised both his arms, “and in one chord, deeper than the Abyss, higher than the firmament… the Music ceased”. Ilúvatar then spoke to the Ainur about the Music and the consequences that would arise from any attempts to bring discord into it, as Melkor had done. To show them the result of their actions, he led them into the Void and spoke, “Behold your Music!” The Ainur saw a vision of what their song had created—”a World that was globed amid the Void… but was not of it”. They saw the history of this World as it unfolded, and witnessed the part each had played in its making. Even the discords of Melkor contributed to the glory of this creation.
The Ainur were amazed when the Children of Ilúvatar came into this vision, for they were a part of Eru’s plan that had not been revealed to them before the Music was played. The Children were sung into being by Ilúvatar during the Third Theme, and none of the Ainur had dared contribute to their making.
Ilúvatar suddenly took away the vision, and the Ainur did not get to see how it would end. Some say that they only saw the history of the Universe until the Dominion of Men. The abrupt ending of the vision caused restlessness among the Ainur, and Ilúvatar perceived that they wanted the vision to be given true being, so that—even despite the terrible flaws that had been introduced into it—the Universe would be as real as they themselves were.
Therefore Eru said, “Eä! Let these things be!” He sent the Flame Imperishable into the Universe, and far off in the Void a light appeared—the beginning of the achievement of the Music of the Ainur.” ~ From Tolkien Gateway
This week our exercise is to meditate on Insight and apply it to our own challenges and goals. Insight and wisdom are cut from the same cloth; it too is a part of our determining the actions and words for circumstance or situations that come across our life.
“For this reason Insight must be exercised so that the thought which we entertain contains no mental, moral, or physical germ which we do not wish objectified in our lives. Insight is a faculty of the mind whereby we are enabled to exam the facts and conditions at long range, a kind of human telescope; it enables us to understand the difficulties as well as the possibilities in any undertaking. Insight enables us to be prepared for the obstacles which we shall meet; we can therefore overcome them before they have any opportunity of causing difficulty. Insight enables us to plan to advantage and turn our thought and attention in the right direction, instead of into channels which can yield no possible return. Insight is therefore absolutely essential for the development of any great achievement, and with it we may enter, explore, and possess any mental field. Insight is a product of the world within and is developed in the Silence—by concentration.” Charles Haanel, Masterkey System, Chapter 15
Mr. Haanel’s text is so exact and thoughtful, that for those of you who have read it for the first time, I encourage you to take some time and read it again.
To grasp the key elements of a complex subject, person or situation and bring it to a sharp steady focus, with sincerity, and integrate it with our own feelings and motivations is part of insight that most will attempt. Yet it is lacking as it starts and stops with our beliefs and traditions. We also must have faith that we live under certain “natural laws,” which, if we allow them, will “help” us in our times of need. Our whole course has been about getting us to think towards a “conscious cooperation” with these laws.
This thought is about as magical as flipping a switch on the wall and expecting a light bulb to illuminate. It too works because of these natural laws.
“The laws under which we live are designed solely for our advantage. These laws are immutable and we cannot escape from their operation. All the great eternal forces act in solemn silence, but it is in our power to place ourselves in harmony with them and thus express a life of comparative peace and happiness. Difficulties, inharmonious, and obstacles indicate that we are either refusing to give out what we no longer need or refusing to accept what we require. Growth is attained through an exchange of the old for the new, of the good for the better; it is a conditional or reciprocal action, for each of us is a complete thought entity and this completeness makes it possible for us to receive only as we give. We cannot obtain what we lack if we tenaciously cling to what we have. We are able to consciously control our conditions as we come to sense the purpose of what we attract, and are able to extract from each experience only what we require for our further growth. Our ability to do this determines the degree of harmony or happiness we attain.” ~ Charles Haanel, Masterkey, Chapter 15
In the paragraph above Haanel said “Growth is attained through an exchange of the old for the new, of the good for the better,” which is a key to insight. In our thinking we have to identify those beliefs and traditions of things in the past that continue to hold us back. We have to “let go.” Our courage must begin with the faith that would place its hope upon the Natural Laws that the universe has designed for our benefit. Our gaze is fixed towards the future rather than to either gripping to the past in a sentimental custom or keeping in our mind the limiting thoughts and events that snare us there.
Knowing these laws is not enough it is in the “application” that we get results.
Do you want change for the better? Start NOW and look around and find the things that can be changed NOW, then take action on them. The patient process of introspection, contemplation and study will exercise your insight. Being in a Mastermind Alliance will act as a mirror, reflecting back our fragments of insight and adding their own so that we can see the harmony that exists and have hope.
Always thinking about “The Old for the New; the Good for the Better” and you will be ready for the abundance and the culture of generosity that is unfolding around you.
In closing the words of Mr. Haanel say it best “Words may become mental places that live forever, or they may become shacks which the first breeze will carry away. They may delight the eye as well as the ear; they may contain all knowledge; in them we find the history of the past as well as the hope of the future; they are living messengers from which every human and superhuman activity is born”
Have you ever heard about the Battle of Agincourt? It is renowned as an almost miraculous victory of a small English army, a long way from home, over a vastly superior army of the French. Morale in the English line as they looked upon the overwhelming force of heavily armored, highly skilled French knights must have been extremely low. Yet King Henry, rising to the occasion, spoke words of hope, encouragement and courage that rallied the English troops and carried them to a victory. Although Shakespeare penned this work nearly two hundred years after the Battle of Agincourt (1415), it remains the finest dramatic interpretation of what leadership meant to the men in the Middle Ages.