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Cultivate the Character of Greatness

Key Lesson: The character of greatness must be measured in two ways, else the measurement is flawed. First, and by far most popular of all, is by one's ability to succeed in times of trial where others may fail. But of no less importance, and perhaps foundational to any form of greatness, is one's willingness to start over in spite of failure, when success seems farthest away.

Five Truths That Make You Victorious

When those familiar feelings wash over us that we have somehow failed at something, or that we are sure to face defeat should we endeavor to claim some personal higher ground, we can do much better than allow ourselves to be carried away by these dark waves. We can call upon the following five light-filled truths to realize new self-victory. Study these friendly facts until they tell you why the whole idea of failure, including the painful sense of self it creates, is a lie you need no longer live with.

Truth #1

The truth is... nothing in life can stop you from starting your life all over, at anytime, because the true fabric of life is a cosmic weave of ceaseless beginnings. That's right. Your power for starting over is backed up by Reality itself, which will place its supreme strength on the side of whoever chooses it over self-ruinous states. All that is needed to put the power of this ever-renewing truth to work in your life is for you to consciously agree to view any unwanted or unhappy moment not as some unavoidable ending, but as the temporary and passing condition that it really is.

Truth #2

The truth is... just as the our own physical eye can't see itself other than by gazing upon a reflection of itself, we can't see our psychological self other than by gazing upon those mental images of our own creation. So, when "seeing" a failure in our mind's eye, we need only remember in that very moment this Truth: It is we ourselves who put it there! Now, instead of feeling defeated by how we picture ourselves, we can see through this defeated feeling itself by daring to see all the way back to how this painful painting came into existence in the first place.

Truth #3

The truth is... that just as it is impossible to feel ourselves a "failure" without having first condemned ourselves for some shortcoming, to do so tells of a secret self-duality that is the seed of defeat. Study the following truth closely: In order to see ourselves as being "small," we must be standing over ourselves at the same time. Now see that neither of these selves within us can exist in our mind's eye without the other, and that being self-divided like this, we must feel as though we are going to topple over and fall. But seeing the truth that we are neither of these inter-dependent selves unites us in a higher understanding that is fail-safe.

Truth #4

The truth is... the painful identity that results from thinking of yourself as a failure can exist only for as long as you cling to some self-created, self-sinking label. The only reason you won't abandon this sinking ship of yourself is because in its cargo hold is stored all your cherished ideas about what it means to be a success. The discovery of this truth reveals that the only weight dragging you under is your best ideas about how to sail through life.

Truth #5

The truth is... even the most superficial glance at the world in which we live shows us, beyond any doubts, that there is nothing living that is not a work-in-progress. This encouraging fact of life reveals a great secret from which we can draw true comfort in times of our trials. Even when it feels like life might just break us, these same trying moments are only part of the Truth's broader plan to make us stronger, wiser, and more willing to delve into the truth of our existence.

This article is excerpted from Seeker's Guide to Self-Freedom (pages 74-76.).

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