Jump to the following topics:
- What are goals?
- We gain benefits from having goals.
- There is a time to have no goals.
- Our goals originate from various sources.
- The techniques for creating and attaining goals.
What are goals? They are specific material states toward which we direct our attention and activities. These "material states" could be a physical object (e.g., a new home), a circumstance (e.g., a better job), a psychological trait (e.g., patience), a bodily condition (e.g., fitness), etc.
- Goals help us to concentrate our efforts in a chosen direction. When we have goals, we know which activities to engage and value, and which ones to ignore as irrelevant.
- Goals stimulate us. They inspire us, fascinate us, motivate us, and spur our imagination. When we have a goal, we have a reason to get out of bed in the morning, and to perform activities. This motivation is important because our purpose for being in this world is to learn about archetypes through our interaction with them; we learn very little when we are sedentary.
- Goals set a standard. They are an ideal against which we measure our weaknesses, our growth, and our fulfillment.
There is a time to have no goals. Goals are in the domain of the left hemisphere of the brain; they are part of our logical, sensible, purposeful approach to life. But we also need to accommodate the right hemisphere with some time off for playfulness and recreation, to refresh ourselves and to generate the vitality which makes life enjoyable and fun. During this play-time, we gain the most pleasure and psychological benefits if we have no goals; this includes the goal of "recharging ourselves to do more work." The play must be done for its own sake, on its own terms, if it is to provide a balance to our labor. (The duality of play/work is explored in the chapter regarding "pleasure and play"; a more-esoteric view of goal-making is explored in a section on "goals in meditation" in the introductory meditation chapter.)
- The ego. Ego's job is to create the material environment which is satisfies the fundamental, archetypal needs of our human life; for example, its goals are to create a home, a food supply, a source of income, a source of sex, etc.
- Dysfunctional elements in our a-fields. Their goal is to discharge their residual charge from previous archetypal encounters; for example, if we have a residual charge from the angry thoughts which we created previously, these elements's goal will be to find someone upon whom we can discharge this anger.
- Intuition. Intuition gives us a "vision" of something which will be useful in our lives -- for our material environment and for our spiritual education regarding archetypes. Intuition comes from spirit, which has a holistic view of all dynamic factors in a situation, so its goals encompass and satisfy all of our needs:
- The needs of the ego (to create our human world).
- The needs of the dysfunctional elements (to discharge their residual charge).
- The needs of our soul (to generate specific circumstances which will allow us to explore a particular archetypal aspect of life).
- We use archetypal field-work.
- Affirmations. We can use affirmations to develop our self-confidence, courage, stamina, and other attributes which will help us to attain goals.
- Visualization. We visualize the goal and the intermediate steps.
- Energy toning. We generate energy tones of self-confidence, courage, pleasure (so that we enjoy the tasks and are thus more willing to perform them), etc.
- The as-if principle. We rehearse the psychological and material conditions which will exist after we attain our goal; for example, if our goal is to be more patient, we act "as if" we are patient.
- Intuition can provide the goal itself, as explained in the previous section.
- Intuition can guide us toward that goal. Because it is aware of all dynamic factors which lie between us and the goal, it can tell us what to do, what not to do, when to proceed with a phase of the project, where to get information and help, etc.
- We experience the friendly relations, even if the friendliness is all on our part. (We cannot control the neighbor's actions and attitude; some people are simply unreasonable and unfriendly.)
- We increase the possibility for a friendly response from our neighbor if we are acting from peacefulness rather than an attempt to manipulate the neighbor into being peaceful.
- A small goal is less intimidating. For example, remodeling our home might seem like an overwhelming project, but we can be comfortable with the idea of painting one room. (After painting that room, we paint the next room, and then the next room.)
- A small goal is easier to schedule. For example, we might not feel that we have enough time to remodel our home, but we can find three hours to paint the first room.
- Each small goal gives us a logical point at which to evaluate our progress and the validity of the project itself.
- We gain satisfaction at the completion of each step. Instead of postponing that pleasure until the end of the big project, we experience it when we finish each step. This satisfaction is a type of "reward" (as explained below).
- We indulge the pleasures from the goal itself; for example, if the goal was an amount of money, we spend some of it on a celebration.
- We indulge the natural psychological phenomena which occur
when we attain a goal:
- An increase in self-confidence and self-esteem.
- Gratitude for any "good luck" and personal assistance which we received.
- Technical knowledge. For example, in the home-remodeling task, we learned about the techniques of painting a room.
- Problem-solving skills.
- New perceptions regarding our a-fields and the dynamics of spirit as portrayed in this world of material circumstances.