Tag Archives: charisma

Vivekananda: Practical Thoughts of an Exceptional Man

(Born 152 Years ago today, January 12, 2015)

swami-vivekanand-390778_640

 Focus

“Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life; think of it; dream of it; live on that one idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success. Hold to the ideal a thousand times, and if you fail a thousand times, make the attempt once more.”

Adversity

“Blows are what awaken us. In the majority of cases it is misery that teaches more than happiness. It is the heroic endeavor to subdue adverse circumstances that carries our spirit upward.”

Joy

“This world is just a gymnasium in which we play; our life is an eternal holiday.”

Fearlessness

“The whole secret of existence is to have no fear. Never fear what will become of you.”

Strength

“This is the question I put to every man, woman or child: Are you strong? Do you feel strong? Are you getting stronger? We suffer because we are weak.”

Freedom

“Man has freedom already; but he will have to discover it. He has it but every moment he forgets it.”

My admiration for Vivekananda (1863-1902) began many years ago with my reading a tiny paperback booklet on his teachings that I happened to pick up while in a used bookstore somewhere in the Dakotas desperately searching for something—anything—to read between flights. At that time I was experiencing great outward success in every material way, but was dissatisfied and did not know why. That magical little booklet came to mean a great deal to me, and from it I progressed to a reading of all the hundreds and hundreds of thousands of words spoken by this mesmerizing orator with a gleam in his eye who possessed “a quiet but assured air of command.”

When I find myself going astray (as I too often do) and wandering away from the deep down fundamental things, his words come to mind to rescue me, particularly, be fearless; have no fear, and “Go beyond the trifles of the world. Know that nothing can affect you. It is liberty to be affected by nothing. Be perfectly resigned, perfectly unconcerned.” In other words—if other words are needed—keep your bearings; don’t lose yourself craving what is inessential to you; don’t let superficial things and pettiness touch you; find that your life is more composed of meaningless nonsense than you have ever imagined. I think that if truly understood and taken to heart, these are among the most profound and therapeutic words ever spoken. If you and I were to “go beyond the trifles of the world” most of our worries, anxieties, fears, and doubts would fly out the window. So when things are pressing in on you from all sides and you wish them to stop, say to yourself, “Go beyond the trifles of the world” and watch what happens.

Unlike his mentor Ramakrishna, Vivekananda (born Narendranath Datta in Calcutta, India) was not a mystic. He was a spiritual man and fundamentally a teacher of how to live sincerely and honestly in this real world of work and family without losing sight our spiritual nature. The prophet of self-reliance, he was a person whose words expressed exactly who he was without phoniness, fakery, or pretense. When he died at the age of thirty-nine, the world from beggars to statesmen mourned.

“By means of the constant effort to do good to others we are trying to forget ourselves; this forgetfulness of self is the one great lesson we have to learn in life. Every act of charity, every thought of sympathy, every action of help, every good deed, is taking so much of self-importance away from our little selves.”

”Always keep your mind joyful; if melancholy thoughts come, kick them out.”

“We are responsible for what we are; and whatever we wish ourselves to be we have the power to make ourselves.”

“It is selfishness we should eliminate. I find that whenever I made a mistake in my life, it has always been because self entered into the calculation. Where self has not been involved, my judgment has gone straight to the mark.”

“It is thought which is the propelling force in us. Fill the mind with the highest thoughts, hear them day after day, think them month after month. Never mind failures…they are the beauty of life, these failures.”

“The one way out is through ourselves.

“Almost all suffering is caused by our not having the power of detachment. We must learn not only to attach the mind to one thing exclusively, but also to detach it at a moment’s notice.”

“In all these little roughnesses that we meet with in life, the highest expression of freedom is to forbear.”

“The goal of all nature is freedom and freedom is to be attained only by perfect unselfishness: every thought, word, or deed, takes us toward the goal. Have no thought for yourself, no word for yourself”

“There is no limit to the powers of the human mind. The more concentrated it is, the more power is brought to bear on one point; that is the secret. In making money, or in worshiping God, or in doing anything, the stronger the power of concentration, the better will that thing be done.”

 

Vivekananda was little known outside a small circle in India when he appeared at the Parliament of Religions in Chicago in 1893—the first time the leaders of all the world’s major religions were brought together to talk to the public about their religions. Vivekananda had a handsome face and striking appearance and drew attention the morning before he was to speak for the first time. His turn to speak came, but he excused himself and asked for more time. Later he confessed that he had stage fright: the other speakers were prestigious religious leaders who had come prepared. He had arrived with no formal credentials, unknown, with no money, no resources, no place to stay, and hadn’t prepared a speech.

Such was the overwhelming impact of his mere presence on an audience that when in the afternoon he rose to his feet at the podium and began speaking with that extraordinarily deep bell-like voice, saying “Sisters and Brothers of America,” the reaction was astonishing. Instantly the entire audience—many hundreds of people— clapped and cheered wildly. Nothing like that had occurred at the conference though all the other speakers were better known. The audience must have sensed they were about to hear the most valuable words of a most exceptional human being.

© 2015 David J. Rogers

For my interview from the international teleconference with Ben Dean about Fighting to Win, click on the following link:

www.mentorcoach.com/rogershttp://www.mentorcoach.com/positive-psychology-coaching/interviews/interview-david-j-rogers/

Order Fighting to Win: Samurai Techniques for Your Work and Life eBook by David J. Rogers

Fighting to win Amazon

Click on book image to order from Amazon.com

or

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/fighting-to-win-samurai-techniques-for-your-work-and-life-david-rogers/1119303640?ean=2940149174379

 

Order Waging Business Warfare: Lessons From the Military Masters in Achieving Competitive Superiority

Waging Business Warfare812sCY9edLL._SL1500_

Click on book image to order from Amazon.com

or

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/waging-business-warfare-lessons-from-the-military-masters-in-achieving-competetive-superiority-revised-edition-david-rogers/1119079991?ean=2940149284030

 

6 Comments

Filed under Creativity Self-Improvement, Developing Talent, Human Potential and Achievement, Eastern Philosophy

The Doctrine of Ki, Part II: Clearing Your Mind, Increasing Your Strength

“If your mind is preoccupied, your ki tenses, and you become awkward.”

“Form follows ki, and ki follows the mind.”

(Adapted from the eBook Fighting to Win: Samurai Techniques for Your Work and Life, David J. Rogers, Crossroad Press, 2014)

Shin is your frame of mind, ki is your vital energy, and ryoku is your power. They always go together, and they may fill you with strength or with weakness. In this post we’ll look at shin and whether it is yielding strength or weakness.

A Common Tale

I have two friends, Jack and Bob, who seem to me to be similar in many ways. However, in spite of their similarities, they’re very different. Jack is discouraged and depressed easily, and sees work life (and personal life too) as a burden full of trouble that one has to suffer through.

Bob, on the other hand, is buoyant, energetic and optimistic. Both men have suffered setbacks in business and outside it, but they react to them very differently. Jack dwells on his. He moans and becomes grumpy and irritable. Bob picks himself up and reenters the stream of life eager to see what lies ahead.

Jack endures his job the way one endures a dreaded disease. He has told me more than once that whatever he touches turns to shit. Bob moves quickly from one success to another.

A major difference between these two otherwise similar men is the difference in their frame of mind, their shin. Because their shin is very different, so are their ki and ryoku. Bob’s ki is positive and his power of action is all right there, 100 percent. Jack’s ki is negative and his power is almost nonexistent. Their shin is a difference that makes all the difference.

Olympic Athletes and You

What separates winners from losers? What differentiates Olympic athletes from other world-class competitors? According to a group of researchers who studied America’s top wrestlers, the difference is not in physical ability. And it’s not in training methods: they’re pretty standard. The difference is in the athletes’ frame of mind, their shin—in what they think.

Men who were eliminated in U.S. Olympic trials tended to be more confused or depressed before the match—that’s very bad shin— while the winners were positive and relaxed, which is very good shin. Those who made the Olympic team were more in control of their reactions than the losers, who were more likely to become upset emotionally.

Without seeing even one wrestling match, the researchers were able to predict 92% of the winners by using profiles of the athletes.

Feeling free and easy, being relaxed and calm, not being caught up in problems or worries, thinking positively and optimistically, expecting to do well, being committed to what you’re doing, not being grumpy or irritable, feeling fearless, buoyant and confident … all these are positive shin, positive ki, ryoku power-producers.

Experiencing worry, anger or hostility, losing heart, being afraid of something lying ahead of you, worrying, expecting defeat, holding a grudge, feeling timid or uneasy and being confused in action . . . these are examples of negative shin, negative ki, power-depleters.

Exercises for Transmitting Your Ki

  • Reflect on your thought habits and change negative to positive. Many people, possibly most, simply don’t realize how much negative ki they’re creating. To find out for yourself, a useful technique is to stop the action for five minutes once a day and write down your thoughts as they pop into your head. After you’ve filled a few sheets of paper put a plus sign after each positive ki thought and a minus sign after each negative thought you’ve listed. Any thought that creates power, good chemistry with others, optimism or forward movement gets a plus; and any thought that diminishes your power, creates bad chemistry, is pessimistic or prevents you from moving forward toward your goals and responsibilities gets a minus.Ask yourself, “Which predominates, positive or negative?”
  • Reject negative shin thoughts and replace them with positive, power-producing thoughts. Do this whenever a negative thought appears in your mind. Whenever your thoughts drift off to the negative, stop them, then substitute positive shin thoughts—“I like this person.” “I’m having a good time.” “We can work this out.” “I’m happy.” “I’m going to succeed.” Always reject negative ki and consciously replace it with positive.
  • Spit. To add determination to your rejection of negative thoughts, spit out the troublesome thought. Go “thoo” and spit out the thought.
  • Pay special attention to “red alert,” negative ki thoughts. Whenever you feel any of the following–afraid, scared; confused, indecisive; distracted, upset; depressed, sad or miserable; worried, nervous, anxious, upset, tense, pressured; beaten down, defeated, your spirits sagging; listless, unmotivated and bored; shy, non-assertive, timid; defensive, ready to hit back, bitter; guilty–your ki is negative, your ryoku power is weak. Right away, remind yourself of shin-ki-ryoku. Tell yourself, “Remember, make your thoughts pure and transmit your ki.”
  • Control your expectations. Negative-expectations, negative-ki people are that way only out of habit. By developing new, more positive shin thought habits you condition yourself to have positive expectations and you put more power into your actions. More than 100 studies of 15,000 people show that those who expect to succeed are happier, healthier, and more successful. Always jump to the positive. Be like a fish that is swimming in one direction, but can quickly turn and go in the opposite.
  • Constantly remind yourself of the importance of positive shin, positive ki. Make a pact with someone. If one of you is becoming tight, irritable or gloomy, the other is to say, “C’mon now. Don’t forget. Transmit your ki.
  • Write out reminders on three-by-five index cards and put them in prominent places around your house and office. “Plus creates plus.” “Good shin creates good ki creates power.” Read them aloud, and with feeling, from time to time. On each card draw a large minus sign and a large plus sign. Draw an arrow from the minus to the plus to remind yourself to move your negative thoughts to positive.(Martial artist Bruce Lee visualized his negative thoughts written on a piece of paper, then saw himself wadding the paper into a ball, lighting it with a match and watching it burn to a crisp. He said the thoughts never returned to disturb him.)
  • Draw a ring of harmony around yourself wherever you are. You can generate goodwill and cooperation by imagining a yellow ring of harmony around you constantly. Make the ring red or blue if you like—the color doesn’t matter. All that matters is your imagining the ring around yourself and making certain that whenever another person passes into it, there is cooperation and harmony between you.
  • Stop judging others negatively. People can pick up very quickly if you’re thinking they’re dumb, nasty, unpleasant, overly talkative, ugly, poorly dressed, too highly paid for what they do, etc. If they sense that you don’t like them, they won’t like you. So instead, like them, respect them, find real value in them, even if you have to work hard at it.
  • Be generous with your feelings. If you like people, let them know about it. Transmit your ki to them. Much of the negative ki in business is caused by the supervisor who always criticizes and never praises. Parents often do the same with their children. Simply let people know you appreciate what they’re doing and morale will improve immediately—in business and in the home.
  • See your positive ki being passed from you to others. See it as a ray of white light being transmitted by you to another person or a whole group of people. Actually visualize it moving from you to them under the direction of your mind.
  • Maintain your ki even in defeat. Everyone gets beaten. The question is not whether you’ll experience defeat, but how you’ll handle it when you do. When you’re beaten—by another person, an event, a situation—keep your ki positive and strong. Never let the defeat “penetrate your depths,” never let it get to your shin. When you havc a crisis, positive shin can rescue you. Be able to say, “I lost this one (job, person, disagreement, etc.) but I’m not defeated. I’ve failed, but I’m not a failure. I’ve still got the only solution I need—me. ” Even in defeat—especially in defeat—keep your ki going full blast.

You can choose how much power you will have by choosing what to think.

© 2014 David J. Rogers

The Next Post

The next post will show that “the way to draw the power of ki is very easy,” and that “If your ki is settled, your actions will flow.”

For my interview from the international teleconference with Ben Dean about Fighting to Win, click on the following link:

www.mentorcoach.com/rogershttp://www.mentorcoach.com/positive-psychology-coaching/interviews/interview-david-j-rogers/

 

How to Get The Book

Order Fighting to Win: Samurai Techniques for Your Work and Life eBook by David J. Rogers

Fighting to win Amazon

Click on book image to order from Amazon.com

or

http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/fighting-to-win-samurai-techniques-for-your-work-and-life-david-rogers/1119303640?ean=2940149174379

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Developing Talent, Human Potential and Achievement, Eastern Philosophy, Expectations, Samurai Techniques

The Doctrine of Ki, Part I: How To Acquire Charisma and a Powerful Spirit

(Adapted from the eBook Fighting to Win: Samurai Techniques for Your Work and Life, David J. Rogers, Crossroad Press, 2014)

“Fill yourself with ki” (Ki o mitasu)

An Extraordinary Form of Power

For centuries Eastern warriors have sought to cultivate an extraordinary form of personal power. It is called “ki” (pronounced “key”) in Japan, chi (“chee”) in China and prana in India. We really have no one word in English that adequately conveys the full meaning of ki. Approximations include energy, spirit, aura, vitality, vital spirit, breath, life force, and inner strength. It’s simply ki. The warrior doesn’t really care very much what something is called, but only if it actually works and, if it does, how to make it work.

Warriors are pragmatic people.

After learning how a person could generate ki through simple physical and mental exercises, one night I actually tried it. Then before boarding a commuter train to take me to a lecture I was to give, I tried it again. I felt as though I were floating two inches off the ground the whole day. I experienced an energy and power I had never known before. The day went beautifully, almost blissfully. Everything was absolutely right. It wasn’t only that my mind was sharp: the energy was simply phenomenal.

Some time after that I had breakfast with a friend. He told me that he had been “off” recently. He was going through a rough period He had a hell of a lot of work to do, hard decisions to make, and was operating under a lot of pressure. But try as he would, he simply could not get himself together, and the work was piling up.

All I did that morning in a short fifteen minutes was describe my experience with ki and suggest how he could develop his own if he wanted. Writing on a napkin, I outlined the steps he could follow. We paid the check, left, and that was that.

Two weeks later he telephoned to thank me.

“Thank me for what?” I asked.

“That ki business,” he said. He went on to tell me that since we had talked that morning he had experienced the most fruitful two weeks in his entire life. After our breakfast he had gone to his office and immediately taken out the napkin and followed the steps.

“I haven’t been the same since.” Decisions he couldn’t make before, he was now able to make easily. He had felt heavy and listless before; now he felt strong, buoyant, and energetic. What had seemed like insurmountable problems before suddenly had become mere stepping stones to progress.

You are more likely to overcome obstacles that have been stopping you and to achieve your purposes if you have a powerful spirit.

A journalist who only read what I wrote about ki in Fighting to Win because she was going to interview me said essentially the same thing. She got her start by doing her ki breathing while sitting in her tub! She said, “You know, it works and it’s amazing.”

Those experiences with ki taught me that even a minimum of information about this unusual form of power can lead to positive and sometimes extraordinary changes in a person’s life. It’s a learning that’s been confirmed many times since.

What my friend, the journalist, and I had experienced for ourselves were two features of naiki, the samurai “doctrine of ki:” energy and mental control. We had learned that if you use your mind and body in a certain way you can create an unusual form of energy field that can change your life.

 The Formula: Shin makes Ki makes Ryoku

 The samurai men and women were first and foremost superb warriors. That’s what they were trained for. That was their occupation. But they were something of psychologists too—psychologists of action. They knew that three things always go together:

1. Your frame of mind or attitude (shin)

2. Your vital energy (ki)

3. A force—a strength—coming out from you that affects other people, and sometimes very powerfully (ryoku).

 Shin makes ki makes ryoku

Shin is psychological; ki is psycho-physical; ryoku is physical.

Charisma is Powerful Ki

Some actors on the stage or in films possess charisma. Intuitively we all recognize charisma when we see it, and can identify who has it and who does not. Charismatic actors and other performers only have to make their entrance and the audience is in awe. Why? Because they are handsome or beautiful? Often they are not. Because of their voices? Their voice may not even pleasant. Because of their talent? It may, in fact, be almost non-existent.

That charm, that attraction caused by the performer’s whole being in which even faults are turned to advantage is not inexplicable as has been said. It is the direct effect of ki on an audience. And it can be cultivated. Charisma is accessible to everyone.

Speaker A at a conference may be extremely articulate and extremely bright and extremely knowledgeable—far more so than Speaker B. Yet Speaker B may be the one you are impressed with and will remember. That is not at all unusual. B is not as smart or as good a speaker or as knowledgeable, but she has powerful ki coming out of her. Why? Because her shin, ki, and ryoku are in order and are functioning full blast.

© 2014 David J. Rogers

 

In coming posts we will  be discussing naiki, the doctrine of ki. Or you may wish to refer to chapter four of Fighting to Win: Samurai Techniques for Your Work and Life.

Till then, remember: KEEP YOUR KI STRONG AND LIVELY.

For my interview from the international teleconference with Ben Dean about Fighting to Win, click on the following link:

www.mentorcoach.com/rogershttp://www.mentorcoach.com/positive-psychology-coaching/interviews/interview-david-j-rogers/

2 Comments

Filed under Developing Talent, Human Potential and Achievement, Eastern Philosophy, Samurai Techniques