“The apple tree never asks the beech how he shall grow; nor the lion, the horse, how he shall take his prey.” – William Blake
This is part two in a series of blogs about becoming indestructible in an increasingly chaotic world. I currently refer to this indestructibility as “personal power” because it makes you powerful within rather than giving you power over other people. This is not a term that I have invented, but it is useful for the present exposition.
I concluded part one of this series by discarding morality as a source of personal power. I defined morality as behavioural codes that your parents, society, or the culture you were brought up in, want you to adopt to the extent that they become internalised edicts about what is right and what is wrong.
I showed how these edicts drain us of power because we invariably break them and then cover our infractions with explanations that we know won’t stand up to the light of day. This is how morality turns us into base, frightened people who shun the light and even our own shadow.
Is that who You want to be?
What is more attractive to you, and what do You feel is strongest and most indestructible? Truth or lies? Double-standard explanations or straight talk?
I knew you would say that. I knew it because we all instinctively recognise the power of someone who is being authentic. Ok then, so why are you on the side of the lies and double-standard explanations?
Well, it’s not as easy, not as simple as that.
The fact is, for most of us grown-up people, authenticity is a lofty and challenging goal. Our lives have become too complicated to match the blueprint we adopted as children or live up to the morality we were inducted with.
It seems to be a strange state of affairs. Most of us are not murderers or grand-scale criminals. So why do we feel so guilty that we prefer to live a lie rather than simply being who we are? And what is the answer to our predicament? Do we simply need to redouble our efforts to lead a moral life? Well, in order to rectify a symptom we need to understand its causes.
The reason almost all of us are in breach of morality in this world, the reason almost all of us are either struggling morally with ourselves or lying to ourselves and others, is that whichever moral code we were implanted with, it did not originate from within our own hearts. It is incompatible with who we are, no matter how well we may have internalised it.
So here is the key: the way to personal power is to have and observe a code that originates from within Yourself. I will call this code Ethics, and its observance living an ethical life.
So how do you construct such an ethical code and how do you observe it? How does an ethical life protect you, and what sorts of effects can you expect to encounter if you choose this path? These are some of the topics of the next installments in this series.