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Before we reach the age of judgement and self-identification, we instinctively know that there is no such thing as failure.We fall a dozen times a day as we learn to crawl, walk and run. We mess up words and phrases as we learn to talk and sing. we burn our hands in fire, cough and splutter as we learn to swim.
Failure is the process of achieving success, it is the fundamental right of every human being to fall and rise and fall again, as we grow and develop as people, as partners, as parents and as entrepreneurs.
Society, media and conventional education has often sent out the message to us that failure is moving in the ‘wrong direction’. We get marked down for ‘wrong answers’. We are taught to avoid failure at all costs, to minimize mistakes and risk, so that we stay safe and protected from ridicule and disappointment.
Fear of failure is the killer of creativity, the end of adventure and exploration. It makes us wary of our imaginings and stifles our ability to act and manifest beauty into this world.
Always protect your right to fail, to adjust the direction of travel, to compensate for the winds of life and re-set your course. When you want to use the word Failure, just swap the word for ‘learn’ or ‘grow’. It will bring immense liberation to your life and help you realise that success is not a destination or an outcome. It is a state of being, your failspace.
You might think it an obvious question. Doesn’t everyone want to change the world?
If I asked you today, “what would you do if you could change the world”? Would you feel able to guide the world towards the way you think it should be?
Politicians and other who seek power and control determine to do just that; change the world, or as they might say, “make the world a better place”.
Now, one would think that with such a rich history of modifying and changing (for the better apparently), the world would be becoming a better place.
Meaning that year on year there would be less suffering, less injustice, less corruption, greed, disease and war.
There would be cleaner water for more, food for all, hope, human rights and values of tolerance etc.
And it is expected that change would be clearly achievable in a matter of decades as we don’t really have a hundred years to save the rainforest, the flora and fauna, the climate, our civilisation.
The truth is, the world is as bad as or even worse than ever. Wars are more numerous and devastating than ever, social order, human rights and justice are diminishing. Poverty, suffering and the addiction of wealth accumulation are the dominant features of our civilisation. We as a species are charging blindly towards our own demise and taking many of the plants and animals with us.
With just enough talk, just enough rhetoric and feigned concern from those who pretend to care while those who do actually care have no control.
No policy, no accord, no protocol or convention will save us. No one voice, no second coming of any Messiah will turn us into a fair wind.
For things to improve, the whole world has to change together, with one long slow wave, one long breath, through many generations.
That’s how we can change the world. By being one beat in the pulse of life,
one word in the song of change, one note in the symphony of awakening.
Because it is not what we do in our lives that will save our kind, it is what we teach, what we pass on that sets the sails for the journey of mankind.
We can spend our short lives trying to change everything that we see is wrong and attempt to be the whole song, the whole symphony and demand that it all become right, right now.
Or we can accept that in terms of our lives we are a blink of an eye and really, all we can actually influence is the next blink. To help make it more in tune with conscious behaviour, so that the next blink moves us closer to an existence more in harmony with our Earth and fellow beings. Blink by blink, generation by generation.
We can make the world better and better but none of us alive today will get to see the utopia we all covet. That is for our children’s children.
A world living in peace and balance, with free awake people that don’t kill each other, who share the Earth’s recourses fairly and justly and intelligently.
That unfortunately is not for us.
But, without us, without our contribution, it won’t happen.
Without us teaching the next generation to teach the next and reach a critical mass of consciousness, we as a civilisation, as a people are heading into darkness.
Without any asteroid or super volcano, without even a nuclear holocaust, we are currently destined to simply devour ourselves.
So whether we like it or not, the new man will have to live in a simpler and smaller way with completely different priorities and lifestyles.
A more natural, human existence in smaller communities with less consumption and less greed.
James Lovelock, the author of the Gaia hypothesis put it very clearly by stating “the very idea of ‘sustainable development’ is an oxymoron and that the only option facing us is a sustainable retreat”.
A balancing and stabilisation of human life on Earth over many generations.
So we can play that small but critical part in creating that future. We can raise our children to be more conscious. We can assist them to have a deeper experience of what is really important about being human and what is needed to make the world that better place.
We cannot teach our children how to change the world but we can show them how to be even more accomplished and intelligent parents than we have been.
They, in turn, will teach their children to grow again in understanding, in love and respect of their fellow travellers and the Earth.
That is the responsibility of all generations. To be the brightest blink, the most empowering force we can be. Through example and mutual respect, through benevolent authority and trust, we can seed the fields and nurture baby trees and in the years, decades and centuries to come, the trees will mature and mankind will live in a new garden.
So now, let’s change the world!
The One Basic Concept That Can Completely Transform Your Relationship With Your Children And Yourself!
I have, with my wife, raised two boys, now aged 19 and 21 and a stepdaughter aged 28. They are inspired, energized, healthy and balanced individuals because of one very basic but critical concept. Getting this concept and applying it changes the actual viewpoint from which we parent and so transforms the very experience of being a parent..
Many of us feel that our children need to be protected and directed in order that they turn out as successful individuals. Others, believe that parents should befriend their children to maintain trust and a happy relationship, by giving them space to evolve, without being controlled or coerced into a future that we think is best for them. In my experience, both these approaches lead to disaster!
Either a child experiences domination and suffocation or the alternative, being neglect and ‘boundary-less’ choice paralysis.
So how do we care for our children, help them and protect them? How do we decide which approach and how much stick to carrot is the right balance?
Well here is the concept that creates an environment of healthy communication, clear, empowered roles and functional family connections.
The Concept is to move from expectation….to Aspiration.
That is it. Just shifting from one to the other, focuses the energy where it belongs; with the child. Moving to aspiration means that we want the best for our child. We want hem to be self-reliant, inspired, creative and healthy BUT inside ourselves, we accept that it may not turn out that way. Our children may face challenges, suffering and difficulty in their lives and on a deep level as parents, we need to accept that as a possibility and realise that they are here to live out their own story.
When we are in expectation, we are attempting to engineer our children in order that they live out OUR story. This is not an easy shift but when we realise that we can, in aspiration, guide and support, care for and encourage, facilitate and organise, teach and connect. Then we see that our children open up to the experience of our role in their lives.
In aspiration we can build trust and influence, the two essential ingredients needed to protect and inform our children.
In expectation, there is an agenda presented to the child and this is felt within them as invalidation, as disrespect and as an experience of the parent in essence becoming the child. We expect them to be successful not just because we love them but also because we need to be validated as parents through their achievements. A child feels this as an energetic abandonment, even if we are supportive and apparently ‘focused’ on the child.
This is the birthplace of unhealthy rebellion, of seeking identity through separation that is beyond the natural desire to leave the nest. It is the root of self sabotage. Where failure becomes power, where identity is developed in a negative self-evaluation. This core issue is the environment in which the relationship between child and parent becomes conflictive,abusive or even violent. This is how we can potentially cripple our children for life.
So the concept of aspiration allows for all the important dynamics of parenting; guidance, wisdom, support, nurturing but also conviction, sincerity, boundaries and responsibilities. It creates clear roles, for authentic modelling and allows for appropriate, life long friendships to develop within a safe, creative and loving family space. This has been my experience and I am filled with gratitude for the strong and solid bond that I have with my children.