July 24, 2014

A Radical Approach To Life – Why You Need It and How To Get It!

Whatever it is you’re seeking to create – a business, personal change, social change, or even a fulfilling relationship – you need a radical approach. Radical comes from a Latin word meaning root.  So, to take a radical approach is to get to the root issues and the source causes.  If you’re looking to create something or change something it behooves you to go deep.

Everything ‘outer’ in our lives, from our choices, actions, outer circumstances, events in the world, to whether a person on the street smiles or frowns at you – everything has a deeper root source.  For example, have you ever had an experience where you said Hi to someone and they didn’t respond.  So you thought it had something to do with you?  Perhaps, maybe they were reacting to you.  However, even more likely is that their reaction had more to do with what was going on within them.  The root cause had more to do with their inner life than it had to do with you.

Most of what we are observing in general in the world is ‘effect.’   So, to get to the root is to get to the cause. Everything outer and material has its own source that it came from. That foundation is either an idea, belief, thought, feeling, or inner impulse.

Many of us approach a situation and eagerly begin addressing it on the surface without going to the deeper aspects that created the situation to begin with.   So, you may be stuck with a habit or situation in your life and feel frustrated. You may think to yourself “I’ve already tried to change that, but it was impossible.” Perhaps the reason it didn’t change was because your approach was only on the surface.

Superficial approaches bring surface, subpar results.

Trying to create change at a superficial level is futile if you don’t address the root cause. Just like trying to remove weeds. If you just trim the tops of the weeds, without digging and removing their roots, the weeds will continue to grow.

So, how do we access the roots, foundations, and cause? It requires an approach of inquiry and inner work. Investigate, identify, and label the root cause. If the root cause of a problem in your life is something inside, trace it back to its source and from there figure out how you’re going to change it. Don’t dwell on its source. Simply identify it and figure out how you’re going to handle it. Often our outer actions that are problematic and get in our way have an inner attitude, belief, or assumption behind them. If you begin addressing it now you can shift it before it causes more problems.

One of the key ingredients in shifting ’cause’ is meditation. Meditation helps create space in our mind to shift habits. Meditation takes you directly to the level of the mind where habitual patterns are located. Generally, thought patterns are like ruts that we’re stuck in going around and around on the same track of thought. Meditation helps us create new pathways and new patterns of thought, thus liberating us from old sources of ’cause’ so we can create new ‘effects’.

Meditation frees us to create more productive thought patterns that serve our higher purpose.

So, the two main takeaways for creating a radical approach are… Firstly, go deep – seek out and identify the original source of the issue. And, secondly, incorporate meditation so that you can continue clearing out old root patterns that are growing weeds in your life.

Next week, I’ll explain how we apply the radical approach to creating social change.