Transcendence Now!

7 Steps to Achieving Transcendence

What is the most powerful word you can think of? Is it love? Is it power? Perhaps it’s something else. For me, the most powerful word in the English language is transcendent. I don’t know of any other word that articulates the possibility of the human experience. From Merriam Webster dictionary:

  • Transcendent: exceeding usual limits :  surpassing, extending or lying beyond the limits of ordinary experience; being beyond the limits of all possible experience and knowledge; being beyond comprehension.
  • Being beyond comprehension! Doesn’t that pretty much sum up our experience in this universe? I believe it does. I cannot even fathom why we are here or what our destiny is as a species, except to say that I know humans tend to transcend the limits of what our perceived limitations are. In fact, I believe the purpose of life for all humans is to transcend- to push beyond. We are all destined to evolve, to grow into new beings. If this sounds too far out for you, consider this; do you want to be the exact same person, with the exact same consciousness, knowledge, philosophies, world view and relationships in 10 years? Stated differently, how will your life unfold if you believe the same things and act in the same ways for the next decade of you life? Will you grow? Will you achieve what you desire? What will be lacking in your life? These are questions I ask myself everyday and the answer to the questions always leads me to the same conclusion: I must transcend. I must grow.

 

  • What follows are Seven Steps to achieving transcendence. All of these are my opinion of course. However, I can confidently state that by following these steps I have grown into a completely new person in the last decade. I’m much more proud of who I am now, than who I was. I truly hope these steps will help you as much as they have me.

 

  1. Get a philosophy to deal with the daily occurrences in life. If daily events upset you and deter you path to growth, adopting a philosophy towards life will be incredibly beneficial for moving forward and growing your potential.

 

  • Stop blaming others. Take full ownership of your life.  In fact, stop wasting time blaming or complaining about anything or anyone who is outside of your control. The Stoics believed that we should divide the world into two categories; things that are in our control, and things we have no control over. Start figuring out what you can control and what you have to let go of and your life will transcend immediately.

 

  1. Read every single day. For thousands of years, humans have been writing about their experiences, problems, successes, triumphs, discoveries, adventures, failures and much more. There is not a problem you are experiencing now that someone throughout history has not faced and written about. Take the time to learn how they triumphed. Both success and failure leaves clues. Don’t be blind to them.

 

  1. Live with virtue. Having high moral standards is the only path to true fulfillment. If your destiny is to grow, you can only do so by treating others as you would have them treat you. This is known as The Golden Rule and it’s a philosophy that transcends all cultures and religions.

 

  1. Train yourself physically and mentally everyday. To transcend, you must train your body and mind to grow by experiencing and studying new things. My favorite quote about physical training comes from Socrates, “No one has the right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. It is a shame for a man to grow old without seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable.” So true

 

  1. Realize that you don’t know what you don’t know. And there is a ton that you do not know. If you believe you already know something, it becomes impossible for your mind to allow you to learn anything new about it. I like to say “there is always something to learn from everything and everyone. Sometimes it is learning what not to do.”

 

  1. Set the game of life up in a way you can win. We all experience certain emotions because of the rules and beliefs we have in life about certain things.   For instance, I feel fear when I believe that I may not fulfill my true potential. I do not feel fear if I see a spider, or a wild dog. I feel happy when I wake up and see my family, or a picture of them. I feel joy when I see someone smile. I’ve set up certain rules for the emotions I feel.   Most of us don’t believe so, but we are all responsible for the emotions we produce and the subsequent actions we engage in. Understanding that you are responsible for your life and that you can set up your rules and beliefs in a way that will serve you. If the only way you can be happy is making a billion dollars or having someone else treat you a certain way, I can promise that you are setting yourself up for a lifetime of disappointment.

 

  • Follow these seven steps and you may not become emperor or president or CEO, but you may transcend to the next level of understanding and fulfillment. (It all depends on you.)  At the very least, I hope that by adopting these actions you will find tranquility in your life.

 

In Health,

 

Sean

On Virtue

I’m going to talk about virtue in this essay… stick with me.

When’s the last time you heard the word virtue? Maybe you remember the term from philosophy class in high school or college? What do you think of when you hear the word? I bring up virtue, or moral excellence (high moral standards), because it’s something I think about often. It’s such an important ingredient to living a fulfilling life. Virtue is also needed when building a great family or relationship. I think virtue is even more important in building a lasting business that serves the marketplace. Something I ponder, the same question the ancient Greeks raised: “Can you live a successful life without being a virtuous person?” Our society’s current standard for what success is has virtue so far removed from it. I think we must move in a direction as a people that declares the only successful life is one lived with virtue. Ironically, if there is one value lacking in society today, it would be virtue.

I believe that businesses especially must return to the philosophy that virtue—incredibly high moral standards are the cornerstone of a successful, lasting business. Sure, anyone can make money off of other people by scamming them or selling them inferior products or services, but that kind of business will never last in a marketplace that values integrity and quality. The truth is that we all demand integrity and quality from others, and that is where most people truly fail. You must demand integrity from yourself. If you value morality in people, in the marketplace and in society, you must first demand it from yourself. You can never ask someone to have certain ideals that you yourself do not exhibit.

Likewise, as a business owner, I can never ask my employees to have virtue unless I first demand it from myself, and I do. I make it a discipline to reflect every night on whether I exhibited virtue throughout the day. Was I someone that other people could learn from and look up to? Did I lead my staff in a way that I would want them to lead others? Did I act in accordance with who I really am and who I want to be? Or, did I allow myself to slip? Being mindful of my successes and my shortcomings regarding virtue is something that allows me to grow as a person of character.

There can be no success without virtue. No relationship or business will last, business or otherwise if both parties do not have a high regard for integrity and moral standards. Every good person interested in the well being of themselves and others seeks to live in a world of harmony and goodness. So, a good place to start is by asking every day: “Who am I?” “What type of person was I today?” “Did I act in a way that others would see as virtuous?” “Am I proud of my actions as a leader, an employee, as a lover or a parent?” These questions, if reflected upon daily, can guide you to leading to a life of incredible integrity and fulfillment—a life of virtue.

Sean