In week 19, Haanel’s Master Key talked about the different names we give two parts of one whole. In the physical world, there’s the North Pole and the South Pole, heads and tails of the coin, inside and outside — names given to two different parts of one quantity. These really aren’t separate entities, just ways of describing the extremes of the whole.
Okay, that’s a fairly easy concept to get my mind around, so the next step is seeking to apply the same idea to the mental world, A little bigger stretch! How about knowledge and ignorance? Ignorance, a negative condition, is just an absence of knowledge, not a principle in itself. You can learn and grow knowledge to defeat ignorance — can you learn ignorance to defeat knowledge, a positive condition? (Well, this could be argued, given the sad condition of our current USA school system — but that’s another story.)
Then let’s try the moral world. How about Good and Evil? According to Haanel (Week 19:8)
We speak of good and evil, but Good is a reality, something tangible, while Evil is found to be simply a negative condition, the absence of Good. Evil is sometimes thought to be a very real condition, but is has no principle, no vitality, no life; we know this because it can always be destroyed by Good; just as Truth destroys Error and Light destroys Darkness, so Evil vanishes when Good appears; there is therefore but one principle in the moral world.
If I haven’t totally lost you by now, at least you are probably wondering what all this has to do with my title for this week. Our assignment was to choose an element that is holding us prisoner in our comfort zone — and figure out how to turn this negative condition into something positive that we can use to push us out into the place where we can start to realize our dreams, goals, purpose for our lives. We were offered five big ones — fear, guilt, hurt feelings, anger, and unworthiness.
A little background before the explanation. Growing up in the 1950’s, with business-owning parents, my younger brother and I always ate breakfast and dinner with them — no radio on during meals, no TV in the house till I was in 7th grade, and evenings were for uninterrupted time to relax (parents) and do homework (kids). The worst thing that could happen would be a ringing telephone. It better not be some salesman barging in on our a happy little family, or one of our school friends when we were supposed to be studying!
Think that might have something to do with the guilt I feel when faced with making evening calls? Rationally I recognize that now families rarely eat together, and we are so used to distractions and multi-tasking (yet another story to be told) that evidently, for most people, interruptions are no big deal. So my challenge was to see the innocence, or positive, condition of guilt and negate the guilt.
Of course, true guilt is probably a positive condition if it leads to a positive change — a person feels guilty of an actual crime, confesses, pays the penalty and seeks forgiveness. But the false guilt that subby lays on me to keep me “safe” must be destroyed. I choose to see my sales calls as what they really are – truly seeking as my primary motive, to bring a good result into the lives of those I am contacting . That truth allows me to be innocent of simply bothering others to make a personal gain — and only being guilty when I don’t call, of denying them the benefits I am offering them .
Okay, is this simply a rationalization, and if it is, does it matter if it still fulfills the purpose? I’m curious to see how it works out.