Tuesday, October 9, 2007

As a life coach, how do I see the world?

Is There a God? If So, What Is He/She/It?

Most if not all human beings have a view of how the universe is organized. This includes that which happens in the observable world as well as a construct of that which cannot be seen or directly observed.

The worldview of most religions assumes that what is and what happens in “this world” are the result of laws and events of another world that ultimately rules the observable through messengers and prophets as appear in scriptures such as the Old and New Testaments and the Koran. Punishment and reward are given in accordance to the degree that the member of the religious group follows rules. “Good deeds” are rewarded whereas “evil deeds” are punished. As there is a lot of evidence that many “an evil”person has died a natural death without what would be considered adequate punishment according to a given religion, many religions teach that good and evil deeds will be rewarded and punished in an afterlife. It is thus that religions provide a system that fulfills the human need for order and justice.

Is There a “Hand of God” That Intervenes?

To the traditionally religious, God/Allah is the source of inspiration of all that is good and Satan is the source of inspiration of all that is bad. The position of traditional/ fundamentalist religions generally is to condemn, devalue or ignore all that is outside of the given sphere of their influence. Even if someone outside of the major traditions has an inspiration to invent something that benefits all of humanity, it is generally considered to be something that is not from God because blessings are given only to true believers, that is members of the given religion. The rest of the universe is thus seen as having no positive contact with God even though the Devil, God’s subordinate, is everywhere.

Putting aside the claim on the part of major religions that they hold a monopoly on God and their view of the world is the correct one, can one justify anyone’s claim that there is “something out there” that decides what is good and bad, right and wrong on earth and in the visible universe? Is there such a thing as a spiritual entity that observes, judges and intervenes in human affairs?

Confirmed atheists cringe at the very thought of a superior spiritual entity with power and intelligence. They see it only as an attempt to structure another authoritarian god under a new mantle. Is it simply one more try to assume the presence of a being, whose only proof of existence is “faith?” A “leap of faith” can be taken in any direction, whether it means immersion into the peaceful practices of Quakers or the right-wing Christian fundamentalists’ way of the sword. With this consideration, “faith” can justify all or nothing and its value is ultimately determined by human judgment.

What Is “Spiritual?”

Is there such a thing as “spiritual?” The acknowledgment that there is lies in the word inspiration. Inspiration refers to a receiving from a source outside of our normal behavioral pattern. It means something that has as yet not materialized, so it is “spiritual” by default. Inspiration is a process of transforming elements of the unkown into the known. And how is the unknown accessed? Through putting together the jigsaw puzzle of what is already discovered and an intuitive tapping of the as yet undiscovered. And what is the undiscovered? Unknown systems of energy and matter await being discovered by human beings who seek to uncover and comprehend that which is secret and not yet understood. One can make an a priori assumption that the universe is greater than life as it is already known because.it contains both the discovered as well as the as-yet-to-be discovered. And just as there is unknown matter to be found, it stands to reason that it is likely that there are as-yet-hidden energy systems.

Can Humans Connect to a Supreme Being?

So what is the human being’s path of access to that which is greater? Is it permissible to refer to that “which is greater” as God? Freedom of thought permits any and all structures of cognizance. Someone who chooses a god of jealousy and anger as the key to reality will have inpirations in accordance with that key. Someone who chooses a god of love and peace will be inspired in ways that resonate with that belief. And one who holds that whatever it is can never really be known will be inspired in accordance to his agnostic nature.

In terms of organized religion this writer is a Unitarian Universalist and as such takes the right to affirm or deny any theological assertion. As to my convictions regarding the unknown, one may characterize it as an intuitive, mystical agnosticism.

Friday, April 20, 2007

An Insight into Relationships

What keeps people locked into a bad relationship?

Have you ever broken up with someone with whom you have had an argumentative relationship over a period of time? You feel “thank God, what a relief! I can now live in peace!” And you feel that having left the toxic relationship behind, you are liberated from the pain you were experiencing.

Then some time later you decide to touch base with that same person because you assume that meeting with him/her won’t be a problem. But then there is a surprise: you suddenly find yourself locked into the same patterns of dispute. It is as though no time at all has lapsed, and the same-old, same-old has not changed. What happened?

You need to realize that relationships have their patterns, in which you and your partner exchange cues to which you have an automatic response. Such a cue can be an irritating word or phrase to which your partner responds with a counter-punch, which then becomes a cue for you to do the same, and lo and behold you are back in the same scenario you thought you had gotten out of.

Is there a basic mechanism that drives dysfunctional relationships?

Painful relationships always have a pattern of knee-jerk reactions that do nothing more than keep the participants locked into whatever the pattern is. For example one partner says to the other “You are always contradicting what I say.” The second partner then defends him/herself with a counter-accusation, setting off a never-ending repartee of blame. The funny thing is that each time a battle begins, the two who are in it act as though it were a brand new fight, each one believing that victory is just around the corner. An experienced observer, however, knows that as much as these battles repeated there is never a victory.

Is there a way to escape from the scenario other than leaving the relationship?

Yes, there is. The partners in the relationship know how to play their roles because they have played them again and again, but oddly enough they don’t really know the nature of their script. A good relationship coach will be able to identify the scenario and help clients see what cues they are getting and/or giving and how they are responding. Once the cues have been recognized the client can then work with options for removing or exchanging them and open the door to creative, positive experiences.

How do you do it?

Working with a good life/relationship coach will allow you to see your situation from angles you may not have known existed. Understanding what is happening leads to a new freedom through which you have new choices. If you want to know more, you can contact me at m.hroth465@yahoo.com.