If you are remotely interested in self-development then you know there is a vast amount of religious, self-help, psychological, scientific (including neuroscience and quantum science), and alternative information out there to help you work out who you are, why you are here, and how you work.
Some information will resonate with you at different times in your life and some won’t. For instance, something you think is rubbish when you are 22 might end up helping you when you are 36 and something you thought was the bee’s knees at 22 may be totally wrong for you at 46.
Nothing is likely to be a perfect fit for your entire life! (Lucky for you if it is!)
Pretty logical that nothing feels right for your entire life when you think about it, because we are continually experiencing, learning and growing on our journey! How many people have had the same favourite; food, outfit, song, hairstyle, hobby or whatever for twenty years?
“Oh” – I just thought – “I’ve had the same husband for twenty years!” I’m guessing that’s because I was lucky enough to find the right husband to grow and learn with – that is, it ‘felt’ right and still does!
Which brings me back to the point – how do you know what is right for you?
This question could apply to food, outfits, songs, hairstyles, hobbies, friends and partners, just as easily as it could to the meaning of life beliefs like who you are, why you are here and how you work.
Well how do you know what’s right?
Doesn’t it just ‘feel’ right? Or ‘sound’ right? Or ‘seem’ right? Or maybe you just ‘know’ it is right?
I recently spent three days with a dear friend who has been on the self-discovery journey for as long as I have known her. Self-development is the main thing we have in common and we usually spend our time together sharing our latest findings, discoveries and theories.
For the last 6 years my dear friend has been following a spiritual teacher whose teachings sounded quite ‘out there’ to me. The majority of the stuff she shared with me about his teachings didn’t ‘sound’ right, ‘seem’ right or ‘feel’ right. That didn’t stop us talking about his content however as there was one aspect of his work that I did agree with and we would talk about this constantly.
On my last visit with my dear friend I realised how closed minded I had been about her ‘Guru’s’ teachings. I relied on her giving me the information second hand and refused to listen to any talks, read any papers or watch any videos myself. After my visit I decided I would research him and his work out of love and respect for my friend.
I had a very painful three days (which included crying twice over whether he was right and I was wrong) in an attempt to find out everything I could about the guy. I also read, listened to and watched his teachings on video with an ‘open mind’. At the end of the third day I sent my friend a text saying I was totally ready to discuss his teachings because I had come to a decision on what felt right to me based on my first-hand knowledge.
My text was loving but it also stated that I had written a short paper on my findings including a few references that painted her Guru in a bad light. Her reply was…
“I have no need for you to believe in him or everything he says. It is just nice to be open to ideas that may be helpful and I like to be able to talk to you about everything and anything. Thank you. I appreciate you and love you!”
After this text I had a MAJOR realisation…
How amazing would the world be if everyone had an open and enquiring mind into each other’s beliefs, interests, passions and individuality?
In my humble opinion there is more than ONE answer to life’s meaning, mysteries and solutions and if each of us search with an open-mind for what feels, seems, looks, and is right for us at a particular point of time in our life, then we can all have open conversations about everything and anything without violence and war!
Imagine the planet and how different it would be if dogma, fanaticism, racism, doctrinism, sexism, (and all those other synonyms for people who stubbornly adhere to their own opinions and prejudices), was replaced with open mindedness and acceptance of others regardless of their beliefs, preferences, passions, interests, sexual preferences and the list goes on.
The only thing that seems to be a GIVEN for all of us is that we are all different and we all need to find what is right for us.
Then if you are like me (and my friend’s Guru) and are totally driven to share what is right for you, you can put up a website, write some books and run some workshops and classes to share your ideas, beliefs and findings with others. Whether followers and attendees take a little, a lot, or everything you’ve got on board right now, later or never depends on what is right for them!
That’s a huge relief for me because I no longer have to beat myself up if everything in the Sparky and Shady program is not ‘perfect’ and right for every single kid on the planet! All I have to do is keep doing what I’m doing and add a ‘kind of disclaimer’ like this one at the beginning of any future book, workshop, class, etc…
“Hi kids! Just a heads up before you get into Sparky and Shady that when you read, listen and watch information and strategies from Sparky and Shady (or any other program or belief system) stop and check if what you have heard ‘feels’ right, ‘sounds’ right or ‘seems’ right to you before you accept it and use it.
You are different than me and different than every other kid on the planet so it’s logical that we will all think and believe differently, but at the same time, don’t let our differences close your mind to things that we have in common that may help you now or later in your life!
Sparky and Shady is something I have created to help and support kids to understand themselves so they can live happy, loving and fulfilling lives. It all works for me so feel free to take what works for you and leave the rest! You can always come back later! (Maybe when you have kids yourself! Ha ha!)