Saturday, March 1, 2008

Applying the Diamond to Life

You don't have to wait until you are facing a huge, overwhelming philosophic problem to begin applying the Diamond's principles. There are many opportunities in life where a few minutes of contemplation on how your current situation can be viewed within the Diamond may change your direction forever.

Author David Whyte illustrates this point in his book Crossing the Unknown Sea - Work as a Pilgrimage of Identity:
"We can spend a third of our lives preparing ourselves for our work, and find ourselves forgetting the original inspiration behind all that preparation the moment we take a seat at our new desk." ( p 164).

A vision of our future, of how we want to make a difference in the world (or at least our small part of the world) drives us toward a career, school, a job search, and finally our choice that places us firmly within the working world. Our vision of the future pokes, pulls, and prods us until we settle ourselves on a path.

However, it is courage that will keep us on the path that eventually leads to making our vision become a reality. Whyte goes on to explain that it is courage that gives a person "...the ability to remain unutterably themselves in the midst of conforming pressures." The pressure from our friends to conform, to become part of the system, and to not rock the boat, to think and act in the accepted way, can be an irresistible force unless we have a clear vision, and our courage is firmly in place.

On this most personal and private level the time a person devotes to getting clear on his or her particular vision of the future and how that vision (and the process of moving toward that vision) effects both the person and those who are closest to him or her is time well spent. In addition, a person must be ready to call upon his or her courage to keep their feet on the path.

Your first task, upon taking your seat at your new desk, is to firmly plant your vision before you and keep your feet pointed toward your chosen future.