I recently took the time to read a few books that I’d never gotten around to. One was “Entering the Circle--Ancient Secrets of Siberian Wisdom Discovered by a Russian Psychiatrist” by Olga Kharitidi, M.D. (Harper Collins 1996).
Olga is a practicing psychologist who sets out on a journey into the snowbound Altai Mountains of Siberia. Her contact with a shaman/healer shatters and rebuilds her view of reality. She discovers deep secrets of healing and magic, and encounters revolutionary teachings about the true nature of the human soul.
Two-thirds of the way into the book, one of her other-world teachers tells her to consciously question every decision she makes. “For each decision you face, you must ask yourself if the choice you make will satisfy five necessary attributes. If even one of them is absent, you must look for another direction. In this way you will always find the right path. There five attributes are truth, beauty, health, happiness, and light.”
In so doing, the teacher explains you will come to know your Heart Self and thus create “an invincible power of will.”
This concept is not elaborated upon in the book, but I like the idea of processing yourself in regard to decisions, so I decided to explore how I might interrupt the five attributes:
Truth: Will the decision reflect truth as it relates to my personal belief/morality system? As an example: Someone of Christian orientation wouldn’t necessarily perceive the same truth as someone who guides their life by Pagan beliefs. Zen teaches that Truth must be discovered within.
Beauty: Will the decision reflect more beauty into my life? Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but true beauty is more spiritual than physical. Spiritual beauty is unending, while physical beauty is a facade. So this question causes you to look deeper.
Health: Will the decision support rather than dissipate or endanger my health. As examples: 1) If the decision will cause you to work an additional 18 hours a week, chances are you’ll become stressed, which could dissipate or endanger your heath. 2) If you reject the opportunity out of laziness or because you fear asserting yourself, you may be closing down your energy flow, which over time could manifest health issues.
Happiness: Will the decision result in an experience of expanded well being? Happiness is an abstract term that needs to be explored in relationship to level of awareness. To those with limited awareness happiness means pleasurable sensations usually achieved through the body. To the more aware, you would add pleasure achieved from within. To those who are fully aware, happiness would come closer to Divine bliss. But even those experiencing Divine bliss are living upon the earth plane and would probably desire some physical pleasure.
Light: Will the decision help to remove any darkness within me? As examples: If the decision brings you more joy and aliveness, it will generate more light. If the decision helps you to confront and rise above a fear-based emotion, (jealousy, possessiveness, greed, envy, prejudice, resentment, etc.) the removal of darkness allows in more light.
Here’s an example of applying the five attributes: I was recently invited to participate in a series of small New Age festivals. The question to ask myself: “Should I agree to appear?” TRUTH: It would be enjoyable and introduce new people to my work. BEAUTY: Sharing my communications always adds beauty. HEALTH: Positive expressions of energy have long-term value. HAPPINESS: It would be an enjoyable break in my normal routine and include west-coast travel. LIGHT: I would be fulfilling my dharma, which generates light at a soul-fulfilling level. DECISION; I think I’d do it.
If this concept intrigues you, I’m sure you’ll have your own way of processing these five attributes. Any time spent establishing new ways to expand awareness has to serve you.