Zero Sum Game, or Not?
Is one person’s gain equivalent to another person’s loss? Well, in football, yes. Is the net change in
wealth or benefit in real life a zero sum game? Depending on who you talk to, and your perspective, and your context, you will certainly get different answers. In economic terms, one writer will claim that income is not a zero sum game, and another writer will point out that commodity trading is, in fact, a zero sum game. One politician will propose that when we help lift up the infirm, everybody wins. Another will propose that entitlement programs weaken the fabric of our financial system. You decide.
What about the non-zero sum game: is that more often the reality? Every time you make a transaction, be it for goods or services, or for information or simply for good will, you are expecting value for yourself and offering value to your partner in the transaction. Hopefully both partners gain. In real life, sometimes we lose. Or so it would appear. There was a time when I invested some money and ended up with a “net loss” for my investment. What did I gain? Some hard earned experience. Has that experience benefited me? Was that a gain? Do I make smarter choices now? Let’s hope so.
Context and perspective are everything. Fear used to drive my life, though I told myself I was fine. Below my conscious choices about showing up in the world with an image that put a smile on my face, I was afraid. Below my persona that managed to navigate my life projecting the appearance of competence, I was afraid. Underneath my ability to keep going no matter what, I was afraid. That is, I was conflicted. One part, I was managing, progressing, moving forward in my career. Another part, the stress, down deep, kept accumulating. For years. After my system broke down, and I could no longer pretend I was fine, I had to get honest.
My context and my perspective began to change, I began to get more honest: with myself and with you. I began to sort out my fears and engage new found strengths and
strategies to learn to heal my wounds, especially emotionally. As my healing progressed, I became less afraid that when you would gain, I would lose. I began to learn, and most importantly to experience the reality that when one of us gains, we all gain. Definitely not a zero sum game. That learning took years to integrate into the depths of my unconscious. The deeply rooted unconscious beliefs that my world was not a safe place to be were like weeds in my garden: they kept coming back. So, I kept weeding. In fact, I keep weeding to this day. And nourishing the soil, that is: diving deeper into my conscious awareness with more experiences, more tools, more help from my friends and more help from my teachers.
When you are competing with anything in your world, including yourself, there is a sense of duality, and there is a worry that you might lose something. Especially when you feel threatened by your challenge or your challenger. The perception of “other” will consistently bring up the worries and the fears that “you” will suffer a loss. The belief in the zero sum game is embedded deep in our collective unconscious. That does not make it true. It just feels real, rooted in some faint, vague, obscure, mysterious unconscious part of our psyche. Until we notice how much it is siphoning off our vitality. Because it is not the truth. The truth is this: when you gain, I gain. Please do not misunderstand, this is not what your monkey mind believes to be true. It is what your heart and your soul know to be true. All of those can co-exist, they already do co-exist. The resolution of that contradiction is to allow them to co-exist, by creating a larger perspective that incorporates your monkey mind as a wonderful servant (horrible master), a servant to your greater truth: the truth in your heart and in your soul. You are already living within the truth of the connection between your mind and your heart and your soul, and your monkey mind is working very hard to discount and to deny that reality.
That is why you are tired. That is why I get tired: because my mind would still wrest control of my
conscious awareness from my heart and from my soul. This is not a belief system, it is not about any particular belief. It is firmly rooted and grounded in direct experience. I have had to cultivate, year after year, for many decades, since I was a 7 year old boy, cultivate that experience. It began in the marrow of my bones, listening to the story of a miracle worker from 2000 years ago. It grew in my psyche despite years of inner conflict and emotional woundedness. It began to mature when I had a direct, visceral, full on experience of the Peace that Passes Understanding, in 1996. That experience continues to mature on account of my working with masters of the science of the soul and teaching what my teachers told me to go out and teach.
The science of the soul is not a belief system. No belief is required. It is a system of mechanical, formulaic tools that deliver to you a direct experience. Every one of us is different. Everyone has a different experience when they use these tools. When you change the oil in your car, your car will deliver to you a new experience. When I change the oil in my car, my car will deliver a new experience to me. You are driving a very different car from mine. We both went through the same mechanism. And we had different experiences. Just so with the tools and formulae I teach. The question is this: are you ready for a new experience of your own vitality, your own conscious awareness, your own relationship to your mind and to your heart and to your soul?
Look at my shout out describing my newest offering:
Inspire Your Self and Your World From the Inside Out
and feel free to call [513-288-1306] for a free consult, via zoom or skype or over coffee or tea as you prefer. Or text or email [firstname.lastname@example.org].
Do it today: this day is truly all you have. Make good use of it.