To achieve this Socrates emphasises the importance of sharpening his attention through meditation, a hugely beneficial practice that can yield tremendous benefits. Socrates arrives and accelerates Dan's healing process. Mystified, Dan follows Socrates to an ancient Native American burial ground.
Attention costs no money, your only investment is training.
Similar to Stoic philosophy and the current psychological practices of focusing on your locus of control, which I’ve already written about briefly, Socrates touches on the futility of concerning ourselves with arbitrary outcomes, “You can control your efforts, not outcomes. He also learns that he's one with everything, beyond his mortal self.
As long as we remain present and conscious of our choices, making the decision is not what matters, but rather taking concerted action. To do or not to do.”, “It’s better to make a mistake with the full force of your being than to avoid mistakes with a tiny spirit.”, Often we continually question our actions with thought.
Plus, bonus, he marries Joy… and finds joy. Socrates and Dan return home. His studies are going well; he's got a girlfriend named Susie.
All my parts would continue forever, forever changing, forever new.”, “Death and life had been an illusion, a problem, nothing more than a humorous incident when consciousness had forgotten itself.”. The book details Dan’s time with Socrates at the gas station, learning life lessons that nourish him to a more fundamental degree than his formal education. Despairing, he finally sells all his possessions and heads off into the mountains, determined to find happiness.
“Every infant lives in a bright garden where everything is sensed directly, without the veils of thought – free of beliefs, interpretation and judgements.”, “The birth of the mind is the death of the senses.”. The story tells of a chance meeting with a service station attendant who becomes a spiritual teacher to the young gymnast, Dan Millman.
Socrates sends him away to look for answers in adulthood. One particular night, Dan heads out to an all night gas station, where he meets the same old man from his dreams. Dan meets Socrates again, now over hundred years old. An unreasonably happy man, I learned, can grate on people’s nerves.”, “Beneath all our apparent differences we share the same human needs and fears.
Dan, returning from the vision, sees the truth that nothing can possibly matter. His studies are going well; he's got a girlfriend named Susie. I was now myself, the consciousness that observed all, was all. Happiness is not just something you feel. One is insight – paying attention to what is arising.
Dan witnesses his own death: his body decomposes and even the landscape changes, over thousands of years. Socrates begins his initiation, by showing Dan visions of his whole life; his purpose; the world and "re arranges" the young man's mind. “When you begin transcendental training, focusing your best efforts, without attachment to outcomes, you will understand the peaceful warrior’s way.”. A few weeks later, Dan suffers an accident, where his right leg is badly fractured. Master the ritual before you expand the same insight and surrender fully into daily life.”. Let’s begin this Way of the Peaceful Warrior summary with the main themes of the book,... A Warrior Is as a Warrior Does.
Many of us struggle with this concept, and the same was true for Dan in the book. Finally free from his mind, Dan dances blissfully with Socrates.
Be happy, without a reason in the world.
Emotions are like passing weather. Recognizing both sides, you become realistic and responsible for your actions.
Next, Socrates begins to train Dan physically, making him run, correcting his poise and breath, practice tai chi, meditation and aikido and refine his gymnastics.
Let’s begin this Way of the Peaceful Warrior summary with the main themes of the book, including the most memorable quotes. “Dan who had lived long ago was gone forever, a flashing moment in time.
When we stop our desperate search and surrender into the present moment, we’re often surprised to have everything we need.
The attendant, whom Millman names Socrates, becomes a kind of father figure and teaches Millman how to become a "peaceful warrior". It’s incredibly common, as we’re bombarded with the perfectly crafted social media feeds of the rich and famous, that we chase the notion of success on a material plane. And in the same way that knowledge may belie wisdom, we need to unlearn the concepts that so often obscure our path. Dan lives a conventional, unsatisfying life for several years, with a marriage and a divorce and work in sales and gymnastics-coaching. Recurring nightmares about his mortality drag him down.
– Training attention through meditative practices is a vital concept “You still believe that you are your thoughts and defend them as if they were treasures.”. And reminiscent of Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, Socrates had the following to say, “All the peoples of the world are trapped within the cave of their own minds. But all is not as it seems, with Socrates revealing hidden knowledge and abilities that pique the curiosity of the precocious young athlete.
The book tells the story of college student and world-class gymnast Dan, who is surprised to find his schoolwork and athletic pursuits do not fulfill him as he had expected they would. Dan is frustrated, and even fails once, but resumes.
It all happens in the 1960s; Dan is a college gymnastics star, who continues to do well in all fields except one.
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Many of us cling to our thoughts and beliefs and confuse them with who we really are. Dan finds this transition extremely tough, mirroring the dichotomy many of us feel with the contemporary society and our true nature. Way of the Peaceful Warrior is an autobiographical novel about Dan Millman.
“You cannot attain happiness, it attains you, but only after you surrender everything else.”, “A warrior is not something you become. A thunderstorms breaks out and the two go inside a cave. And it’s no surprise that we find it difficult. Way of the Peaceful Warrior is part-autobiographical, part-fictional bestseller, which since its first publication in 1980, appeared on many top-books lists.Dan Millman is in the spotlight, a junior at the University of California – Berkeley, who seems successful and happy. – Coaching ourselves to appreciate life’s simple pleasures is the way of the warrior. A warrior is happy without reason.
mindfulness can infuse all areas of our lives. The book has been a bestseller in many countries since its first publication in 1980.
I would, as a peaceful warrior, choose when, where and how I would behave.”.
And this is a common theme throughout the book. However, this anger and frustration, Dan learns, can also be harnessed….
Sometimes sorrow, sometimes joy. And in fact, the old man is the solution. In fact, we’re often so busy searching for happiness that we often miss it, even when it’s right under our noses. – Incorporates Buddhist philosophy into the character’s spiritual journey
You can change fear and sorrow to anger and anger to action.”, “You don’t need to control emotion.
Often we bring so much mental baggage to what we do. The attendant, whom Millman names Socrates, becomes a kind of father figure and teaches Millman how to become a "peaceful warrior". Socrates, with lectures and the ability to give Dan visions, teaches the young man that the mind is the source of his dissatisfaction, and that to become truly happy, he must stop trying to figure the world out and instead learn the difficult discipline of living in the moment, healthy and free. “Just keep your thoughts in the present moment.
Guided by an eccentric old warrior named Socrates, drawn to an elusive young woman called Joy, Dan moves toward a final confrontation that will deliver or destroy him. – Fact/fiction – the book infuses parts of Millman’s real life with a narrative structure
His leg is all smashed up, and we're not sure if he'll ever be back to gymnastics.
C'mon, Dan: what would Socrates say to that?
So be happy now, without reason, or you never will be at all.”, And when we do finally start going with flow instead of obstructing life, a realisation awaits…, “Enlightenment is not an attainment, it is a realisation.
No one does. Despite his overachievement in academics and athletics, Dan feels a strange void in his striving. Indeed, in the information utopia we currently inhabit, it’s easy to become mired in endless overthinking. Eventually, you will learn to meditate in every action. However, through the process of developing awareness, the material life begins to lose its lustre. Drawing parallels with Siddhartha, which effortlessly combines timeless wisdom with a compelling narrative, this book is a joy to read, taking the reader on a profound spiritual journey. The teacher takes him to a cave for a final vision.
Dan marries Linda, but the marriage fails. He falls in love and marries Joyce, who is revealed to be Joy. But there's a problem. In front of him is Death, about to claim his life, when an old man appears out of nowhere and confronts Death.
Socrates reminds Dan of his teachings and that he must be happy without any reason.
In forgetting yourself, you become what you do, so your action is free, spontaneous, without ambition, inhibition or fear.”. Then you’ll think less and feel more.
That is the secret to happiness.”. Dejected, Dan returns to Berkeley, to an old place which Socrates had told him about long ago.
Finally, your awareness will pierce deeply into your body and into the world. Then you can love, and do what you will.”, “Feelings change. Socrates ridicules Dan, pointing out that he is trapped in the illusions created by his mind, causing Dan so much trouble. It is something you either are, in this moment, or it is something you are not.
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