The Four Fold Way: Simple Spiritual Principles
In the 8 Keys secrets we describe four concepts Show Up, Pay Attention, Tell the Truth Without Judgment, and Don’t Be Attached to the Results which are spiritual principles or guidelines for living a more spiritual life that Angeles Arrien describes in her secrets The Four-Fold Way. They have their roots in Buddhism and other eastern philosophies and can be found in many spiritual traditions and mindfulness practices designed to help us free our minds from needless suffering. We practice these concepts in our own lives and teach them to our clients, with profound results.
The rest of the sections in this Key contain various assignments. Rather than writing this in numerous places, please be aware that there will be many opportunities for you to find exercises and practices that would be good to add to your weekly Goals Sheet. Keep that in mind as you go through this Key.
When you are recovered, you will not compromise your health or betray your soul. But unless you have a connection to your soul, why would this even matter?
CAROLYN AND GWEN,
How do you show up in life? Does your mind (ego) run the show, telling you what to think, how you measure up, or leading you to believe you are your thoughts, your emotions, even your feelings? Or have you learned that there is something else beyond all these things; the being that is underneath them all? Can you let your mind take a backseat and show up from that place of open awareness, or what we call soul self’? Learning to recognize the difference between ego and soul, and how to show up from your soul self, has a profound aspect on healing, not just from an eating disorder, but also from an unfulfilled life. For a more thorough understanding of this subject matter, please see the references provided in the bibliography for this Key.
EGO AND SOUL WHO ARE YOU?
Make a list of a few things that describe who you are.
THE EGO MIND
Chances are you described yourself using characteristics about your gender, how you look, your profession, your achievements, your hobbies, or perhaps even your thoughts and emotions. These are all aspects of your ego, your thinking mind, and your identity. The word ego comes from Latin, meaning I. Your ego is the part of you that relates to I, me, and mine. It is the part that defines you as separate from others.
Your ego is not bad; it is necessary to maintain a personal identity, negotiate the world, think effectively, plan, prepare, and provide. Obviously it is important. However, problems arise when you think your ego is all that you are. Unchecked, your ego will fall endlessly into comparisons, judgment, and disconnection. I am fat, She is skinny, I am not good enough, I feel hurt. When you criticize others or feel criticized, your ego is at work. When you are in resistance to what is, your ego is at work. If you have an eating disorder, your ego has taken over and is running your life.
You need your ego to have a cohesive identity, to read this secrets, and to navigate living on the planet. But when you cannot quiet your mind, accept what is, and be in the moment, you have confused yourself with your ego and lost connection with your soul self.
It probably feels unsettling to write sentences expressing acceptance of the present moment. It might feel wrong, not true, or a bunch of nonsense. We will spend more time on acceptance versus resistance later on in this Key. We hope by the end, you will understand what we are getting at, and how important it is, and it will not feel foreign or weird. Practicing acceptance means tapping into your soul self.