Failure, the big deterrent
I had a dream most of my life to live in a school and be a perpetual student.
I knew it was weird, but I also knew that the best time I have ever had was studying hard in school: being at home was really horrible for me.
In 1987 I did The Forum, (Now it is called The Landmark Forum) and there was an exercise in it. The question was: Who are you that you are? Weird question, right? I thought so too, but yet, I somehow knew the answer immediately. Weirdly worded questions do that to you, whether you know it or not.
My answer to that question was: “Who I am is that I can’t make a commitment to anything. I’d rather continue studying than go out and choose one direction to go to and risk hating it.”
I was so proud of my answer that I bravely stuck my hand up… and I was called on.
When I finished what I wanted to say, the Forum Leader said: “Oh, I see, you are a failure!”
I stared at him in disbelief. My eyes welled up, and I sat down. I didn’t hear another word that was said before the break.
At the beginning of the break I went to one of the gold name-tagged people in the back of the room to report.
As someone who had a history of depression, I had a special agreement to report to staff as soon as I notice something out of the ordinary.
This was my report: “I am going to this break and I will not come back. I am going to kill myself in this break.” (out of the ordinary, wouldn’t you think? lol. It strikes me as funny now, but 24 years ago it wasn’t funny at all. I meant it.)
The staff member said: “Why? What happened?”
Me: You heard what the Forum Leader said. He said that I was a failure. If that is so, I want to die.
Staff Member: Are you sure that is what he said?
Me: Yes. I heard it clearly.
Staff Member: Are you sure that is what he meant? What was the question that you were answering?
Me: Who are you that you are?
Staff Member: The Forum Leader answered the question for you, more precisely than you did in your answer. He said: Who you are that you are is that you are a failure. It is not true, but you have been behaving like it is.
Me: This is what he said? Wow, then I don’t have to kill myself!
Staff Member: That is right. Anything else I can help you with?
Interesting conversation, isn’t it?
But it is even more interesting what happened as a result of that exercise.
A year later I changed professions, and became a magazine publisher. As a magazine publisher I could use my learned capacity to compose pages, and covers, and take pictures, etc. And finally I could use my most important capacity: express myself with words. As an architect I didn’t need that capacity.
Why did I share this story?
Because I see a very interesting phenomenon: 99% of the people that are interested in raising your vibration are interested in being a student of raising your vibration, maybe teaching others to raise their vibration, but they are not willing to go out and use their talents, and risk being a failure.
My hunch that they are locked into the kind of behavior that was imprisoning me all those years prior to 1987. They are that they are a failure, and their behavior is now designed to cover it up, and not allow them to put themselves to the test and actually fail.
The “problem” with this belief is that it is false.
There is no person who IS a failure. There are only people who stop trying. Or never start!