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Inspiring Success on the Road to Recovery

Thursday, January 29, 2015

200% of Life

LIFE 101
By Coach Cary Bayer www.carybayer.com

Every day people talk about giving 100 percent effort; some even 150 percent. In this article, I’ll talk about two hundred percent.

Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who helped make meditation a household word, described 200 percent of life as being an enlightened millionaire. Buckminster Fuller said there were enough resources for everyone to live as a millionaire. 

Living in south Florida seven months and in Woodstock, New York about five, I’ve observed people focusing on different aspects of these polarities. In Woodstock, where ‘60s values live, many people are committed to spiritual development. Many don’t make much or have much money, and don’t worry about it. Their net worth is low, but their self-worth is high.

In south Florida, many people are extremely successful materially. They have and make lots of money, (if they’re not already retired), but many worry about money, especially if many assets are in stock holdings. Some monitor investments several times a day, and their moods rise and fall with their stocks’ prices. Many don’t realize that spiritual attainment exists; consequently, don’t put much attention there. Many have very high net worth, but low self-worth. I’ve coached some of them and have seen how they value themselves by how much money they have or what kinds of designer and expensive possessions they’ve amassed. 

A modern day materialistic maxim goes, “Life’s a bitch, and then you die.” This worldview has a corollary maxim: “He who dies with the most toys wins.” A spiritual adaptation might go, 

“He who lives with the most consciousness, who has realized his higher Self, wins the Game of Life.”

But that’s not the prevailing cultural belief. Accumulating trinkets has become more important than accumulating wisdom. To update Jesus’ timeless question, we might ask: “What does it profit a woman to gain a Louis Vuitton pocketbook and lose her soul?” TV networks devote hours of programming to real housewives; none to real gurus. We watch anxious, conflict-creating materialists, but not peaceful, harmony-creating spiritual people. 
To live Maharishi’s 200 percent of life, “spiritual” people need to manifest more materially. Each needs a higher net worth to complement high self-worth. They need larger amounts of money in their retirement accounts; some need to create a retirement account. Many dress slovenly, focusing more on the unseen than the seen; they could dress up their look because first impressions are long lasting, and more opportunities could open with a more attractive exterior life.
Materialistic people need spiritual peace. Many think that peace comes from having enough “money in the bank”—or stocks, bonds, and real estate. Materialists, concerned with what’s seen rather than what’s not, are concerned with their appearance; they could find more happiness if they developed an attractive interior life.

It’s over-simplification that Woodstockers are spiritual and south Floridians are materialistic. Many Woodstockers are materialistic, and many Floridians, who’ve been students in my workshops, coaching clients, and meditation classes—are deeply spiritual, not at all materialistic. 

East and West are Meeting

One reason many spiritual people are not materialistic, and many materialistic people are not spiritual is because of the expression, “East is east, and west is west, and never the twain shall meet.” East and west meet daily. Yoga studios are all over the Western world, and acupuncture, Zen, Feng Shui, and marital arts proliferate, too. If you go East, you find Hollywood movies, designer Italian clothes, and Coca-Cola. 

There’s another expression in our language that’s gumming up the works. I’ll italicize the ridiculous part for emphasis, and state it as a question instead of as a declaration: “You want to have your cake--and eat it, too? To which I answer...well, yes, what else would I do with cake instead of eating it, too? Dance with it? Play Frisbee with it? Cake is for having and for eating. You wouldn’t want one without the other because if you let cake sit around long enough without eating it, its blue icing might be complemented with plenty of other undesirable blue. 
In the same way that cake is for having and eating, money is for having (and spending) and enlightenment is for enjoying. And life is fully lived when both are present.