We have no guarantee how long this precious life is going to be given to us. This is the problem. We all think that we are infinite. Part of this is natural for us so that we don’t get morose about this concept of death.

We don’t want to go around all the time thinking that I may have only another five minutes of life. Theoretically we may really have only five minutes. If that is so, what could be of such great importance to pester us? This is why I talk about death being the best adviser that we have because death reminds us of the gifts that we have right now. It’s not because death is a good or bad thing. Death reminds us that in this life we have many gifts but they could change instantaneously.

What awaits us after death are experiences and ways of being that are going to be different from what this life is. When that change takes place, we will deal with that. But when we are here, we have to deal with what we have here. This is why our lives here must not be taken for granted.

In the past I’ve talked about enlightenment and wisdom and all kinds of philosophy. Afterwards, I think everything I said was beside the point because to be enlightened is to finally put the show together in this life and to have a good life. Never mind about trying to be enlightened so that when we are dead maybe we are going to go to some spot that benefits us much more than here. Enlightenment is for here!

To be enlightened

is to finally put the show together in this life

and to have a good life!

It’s also a matter of attitude. It’s a matter of deciding how strong we are. It’s a pretty basic question. How strong are we? How much power do we have at our disposal?

If we don’t have a big store of power inside of us,

then it’s difficult to make changes,

difficult to do all these things.

Many times the reason that we don’t have enough power in us is that we end up using a tremendous amount of energy in maintaining a certain status quo or defending certain positions that we have decided are important. It requires a tremendous amount of this energy field for that.

Then there is very little energy left over to address difficult situations we may have. It takes a lot of energy to be able to say, and really mean, that as of this moment I am changing the way that these things have been in the pastperiod. “Things are being changedperiod. I’m not going backwards. I’m not going to be affected by any conversations I am having. I am changing them. Period.” That decision requires strength. It requires energy. It requires commitment. It requires confidence. And sometimes we are weak in all these different things.

But just the fact that we are weak

doesn’t mean we can’t build ourselves up.

When it appears to us that we are weak, we have to start telling ourselves, “Yes, it feels as if I am weak but I have a lot of reserves that I haven’t used.” We have to start talking to ourselves. Just as we go to the gym and we want to exercise. We pick up a five pound weight and it seems like it’s pretty heavy. Then we get a two pound weight and we do a few things and pretty soon we can lift five pounds. Then we can lift ten pounds and fifteen pounds. We have to start some place.

But many, many times we say to ourselves, “It’s hopeless. I can’t start anything. I don’t have anything worthwhile about me. I’m going to be defeated and I’m going to lose no matter what I do.” When those thoughts come up, they are very tough to fight. But somehow we’ve got to find just a little bit of comeback and say

“I’m going to try and if I fail, give me

the strength to try again, my Beloved.”

It’s an amazing thing that doing just that

gives such a tremendous strength.

It is truly surprising what strength that can give us!

There are tools that can be used to help with many of these things. A lot of the Toltec teachings that I talk about are based upon creating very beautiful ways of substituting one thing for another in order to develop more strength, more energy, and more confidence in life to deal with things.

One of the basic tools in creating more energy for us to be able to deal with life is to slowly give up self importance. Defending self importance is a tremendous drainage of energy. We defend definitions of what we think we are. I am this, this, this, and this. I have done this, this, this, and this. We are always defending this and as soon as some information, some input, comes from other places to challenge this definition, tremendous energy gets put forward. By giving up this idea that we have to defend our self importance, huge quantities of power are released for us to use.

Defending self importance has to diminish along with defending opinions that this is right and that is wrong. Just let it be. This is! If people want to do whatever they want to do, let them. If you want to do something, do it. By just doing these two simple things over a short period of time we have a lot of strength left over to start doing some other things.

But, if we’re going to defend our ego, defend our personality, defend our actions, defend, defend, defend and if we’re going to have to say, “I’m always right; nobody else is ever right; I’m going to win every battle and every discussion that comes to me,” then we lose all the wars. Then I’m right and nobody wants to speak to me anymore because I’m always right. After a while we’re lonely because we are always right.

So we have to do a few things now that will give us the energy to do more things later.


I choose

to live, to laugh, to love

and to do the things that stir the aliveness in me.

I choose

to learn and grow and change inside and out,

and not to trap myself in rigidities.

I choose

to let myself feel curiosity and wonder and awe,

and to have respect and gratitude for all things.

I choose

to feel my emotions, all of them, rather than fear them

and thus castrate my humanity and my compassion.

I choose

to be responsible for my attitude, my outlook, my perspective

responsible for the way that I live my life.

And when I am confused or over-whelmed or unsure,

as I sometimes am

I choose

to trust that something in me loves me and will assist me

and so I am quiet and listen when it speaks.

I choose

and it makes all the difference in the world.


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