Photo courtesy of raithedopath.com
It was just last March 25, 2018 that I had this prompting again to watch “The Peaceful Warrior”, a film adaptation of Dan Millman’s timeless book. It tells of a story of a U.C Berkeley student and a troubled gymnast who crossed paths with a spiritual guide whom he fondly called, “Socrates” because of his wisdom. The old man first appeared in young Dan’s dream as a faceless janitor, clad in mismatched shoes sweeping off pieces of crumbled ice which came from the young gymnast’s smashed leg. And after reading 3 stories of different authors under the Chapter on “Finding Your Voice.” I caught myself smiling and saying to myself, “Oh, hi Universe, here is your “joke” again huh?”
The story of Dan Millman was entitled: “Writer, Teacher, Peaceful Warrior.” So, what was the message of the Universe to me after such serendipitous manifestation took place? It was not just a message for me alone but for the whole humanity that is why something prompted me to share this to my readers.
In the film adaptation of Millman’s “The Way of the Peaceful Warrior”, “Socrates” taught Dan Millman the philosophy of “living in the now.” He advised the young Dan to throw out the “trash” or to empty his mind of unnecessary thoughts and just focus on the present moment. Most of the time, we can find ourselves totally immersed with worries even before they happen. We are often engulfed with negative notions about ourselves and of other people letting our emotions control us most of the time. We fail to live in the moment. We fail to enjoy what is happening NOW. Man can be unmindful of the many beautiful things happening around him at the same moment in time. Of children playing in the park. Of the sweet laughter of a baby cradled in the arms of his loving mother, of lovers cooing sweet nothings to each other, of the sound of crisp pages of a book being flipped while a young man reads his favorite novel sitting under the shade on a spring season. “There’s never nothing going on.” “Everything is happening at this moment.” The old man also taught him that there is an appropriate time for fighting as well as a proper time for violence. This reminds me of quote which says “We must choose our battles wisely.” We must use our precious time and energy wisely for once it is gone, we cannot make it go back again.
The spiritual guide also mentioned that there is no higher purpose than serving others. He treats his job as doing service to people. Towards the end of the movie, while Dan was performing his routine at the Still Rings, Socrates talked to him in his thoughts asking him three questions: "Where are you, Dan?" "Here." "What Time is it?" "Now." "Who are You?" "This Moment." He was able to perform a flawless showcase of his talent as a gymnast which wowed the audience. Dan was able to do this all because he focused and enjoyed the moment without any distractions.
In Dan Millman’s story in the book, “Chicken Soup for the Writer’s Soul,” he wanted to impart to other writers that we could write for self-expression, but to become an author, we must not only develop our craft of writing but empathy for our readers. He also mentioned and I quote that “All writers have to do is simply write, sow and reap with pleasure and gratitude whatever harvest is given.” As a writer, I have this responsibility to light the dark paths of my readers by finding the light myself first. And through my words with touch of magic, I can help create a change in the world and even of the whole universe.
As a Warrior of Light, we are all here to fulfill our personal legend, to quote Paulo Coelho. And that is to discover our higher purpose or to what others may know of as one’s calling or one’s Divine Calling. The moment our Higher Calling reveals itself to us, we must concentrate on fulfilling it with both love and passion. And we must also remind ourselves that we are not just doing it for our own but for the good of others. We are all here to be of service to others.