THE BLOG

Is it Time to Bring Back the Wise Mystics to Teach Our Leaders?

11/17/2011 09:02 am ET
  • Paul David Walker Author of Unleashing Genius: Leading Yourself, Teams and Corporations

Leaders, Kings and Emperors have had wise mystics whispering the hidden truths of the Universe into their ears for Millenniums. Where are the Mystics now? How do we bring them back? The Emerald Tablet of Hermes, a book of advice to kings, circa 3000 BC, said, "As above, so below. As within, so without." What this Mystic and many others since are saying is that the mysterious forces that create every aspect of life, operate in a similar manner at every level. The flower climbing out of the soil, the energy within a single atom, and the forces that drive human life, are the same forces and operate in a similar manner. It seems to me that we have lost the tradition of studying the mysteries of life and have not developed enough Mystic Teachers, and the ones that we have are written off as "nut cases." Not studying the mystery of life would be like not studying the nature of electricity and expecting to invent a power grid.

What most study are the effects that are visible from the mysterious life force, rather than the force itself. But scientists today, as mystics before them, who study the nature of the ultimate reality, have found patterns in these forces, which set in motion the cause of the effects we see. Since the beginning of civilization, leaders worked with wise advisors who had deep understandings of these forces and used these understandings to build frameworks for the foundation of ancient civilizations, many of whose accomplishments still defy our understanding today.

Are Yesterday's Frameworks Going to Work Today?

Scientists have discovered what ancient Mystics often said, that the universe, which we are all part of, is a relational grid of energy forms that are continuously emerging and changing. It is like being part of a multi-dimensional river whose currents affect each other and have no real boundaries. The Buddha said, "You cannot ever step into the same river twice." There is a nature to this flow, but it is never the same. So we can create a framework that describes the nature of this flow to build irrigation systems and hydroelectric plants, but there are always unintended consequences. The frameworks have to be adjusted and changed as our understanding of the flow deepens. But we seem to cling to old frameworks until it is too late.

Why Does A Framework Have a Limited Life?

A framework conceived from the deep understanding of a mystic or a genius can have enormous power for a time, but its value is limited by the ever-changing nature of the flow it is describing. The same is true in everyday life. For example: my mind has a framework for how to play basketball successfully that I developed in my youth, but as my body has aged, that framework does not work anymore. In September of 2008 our leaders said, "We were two weeks from a global financial meltdown." How is it that we did not notice earlier, and are we using the same framework to solve the problem today? Likewise, in every endeavor from financial markets to managing the environment, we have to adjust our frameworks as the flows change.

We tend to wait for our frameworks to fall apart before we change them. Over history we have become attached to yesterdays frameworks even as the civilizations formed by those frameworks fell all around us. Why does it continue to be hard to let go of old frameworks?

We Stopped Paying Attention to Wise Mystic Advisors

Once a framework starts to produce success we see the framework as truth, instead of an approximation of an ever-changing truth. We become attached to the power and success of the framework; we begin to ignore our Mystic Advisors as they suggest changes, and often throw them out of the temple or the boardroom. We lose contact with the deeper realities, whose changing currents affect our world and find the once powerful frameworks harmful. We do not have a tradition of respect for the study of the nature of the universe, and are not integrating wisdom and genius into our leadership.

In the modern world our frameworks have created powers that are capable of destroying our world, and our Mystic Advisors can't seem to get any press or an ear in the boardroom of corporations or governments. But this time a catastrophe similar to ones that destroyed earlier civilizations could destroy the entire world.

My question to readers is: How do we bring back these wise advisors, call them what you will, and start to unleash their genius to adjust our operating frameworks before we destroy our world?