I am always honored to listen to the business plans of the students…the similarities in their differences. One concern that has been mentioned time and again about sharing a business plan is that someone else might effectively execute it. Justifiable. But if the inventors had felt so strongly about their discoveries, we would still be locked into primitive lifestyles. Yet each new generation seems a little more (if that’s possible) clueless as to who invented what and dare to complain about minor inconveniences without considering the hardship the inventor experienced to beat the path on which we walk. But that is okay, through irritation at the inconveniences pride emerges at having improved upon the invention and taken the glory for it. So maybe it is about us accepting our roles: some of us are givers, and some of us are improvers of what is given. I, for example, am trying to improve upon what my teacher taught me and share that with my students. Only, I don’t know that that is being achieved. The more I teach the more I see that I really teach nothing, I merely facilitate the gathering of students, who among themselves do quite well exchanging their knowledge with little interference on my part. Thankfully, teaching was redefined so I don’t feel like a fraud. But getting back to the point, I would say maybe, just maybe, in openly sharing one’s business plan, one is not necessarily susceptible to thieves of intellectual property, but rather, one might simply be reminding a listener of what is already inherent and can be applied in a useful manner. Hence what later appears to be the execution of one’s plan by someone else. It should also be considered that I have the advantage of harvesting all the plans and having a field-day. Consideration of this interplay of possibilities can be…interesting.
I do support holding one’s plans to one’s bosom. Going back to the Big Bang Theory (the voice of God thundering creative commands), I look at how God went about His plans. He created time by creating space before He did anything else. The time of creation varies depending on whose view we subscribe to. For simplicity, I will opt for Moses’ version. While praying, Moses declared that a thousand years is as a day…an hour in the night. So probably the first day of creation took a thousand years, or if we use the hour reference, it took twenty-four thousand years, which could put the six days of creation between 6000 to 144,000 years. We don’t have that much time, but generally we invest time in preparing a proper plan, and can’t be expected to hand over such an investment to strangers without concerns. It is easy for God to give, because He knows/is the beginning and the end, but with our limitations, it’s understood if we spend our entire life hesitating. But, once we’re out of the valley of decision, we can consider that if we were made of and by God then we inherently have that creative element. Why empower us with creative powers and free will if we are not supposed to create? As a parent sets the example for a child, so too God created and we are expected to follow His example: give, knowing that creativity is yours and you can create again, and again, that which you have given. When we associate giving with lack, we inhibit our creativity, which spurs us on to create in such large quantities that we never have to suffer lack. So we create posh lives with mountain-high bank accounts and oceans of good fortune (because we believe that we cannot create again what we created so large stores are necessary to last our entire lifetime). Only we don’t see it. But it is there. And we know this because we can feel it, but it remains out of our grasp and that is quite a provocation. We need to return to the drawing board.
The Biblical story of the beginning depicts creation taking place in darkness…like conception in the womb. There is first a dark space, then creation is made possible. Too often we want to create things in a life that is full. It cannot work. We have to let go of some things to accommodate others. So in the darkness of the womb a child is created. You can feel it, but cannot tell the colour or texture of its hair or skin, or distinguish its features, etc. And that is how it should be. Wanting everyone to see what we are creating is a little backward. God created the heaven and the earth and no one was there to see squat, but He knew He had done something remarkable. Creation is a delicate process that requires the privacy/secrecy of darkness. After you’ve come up with a reasonable idea of what you want to accomplish, then you bring light to it so that others can see. How many of us know persons with a big dream who have much to say about its incompleteness? And you keep looking with great expectation to see its fulfillment and you never see it, because the dream is still without form, it is void, it is covered in darkness. It needs light/knowledge to be applied to it. As we acquire knowledge/light about our dream, we begin to see how it can be arranged/used to our advantage. I want to do massage for a living, but I am already employed in a totally different field, or I may be unemployed and broke. Either way, it is my secret. I do some research, I seek a tutor, I study and obtain certification. As light is added to my creation others begin to notice. It is no longer a chaotic blur; they can see the beauty of what I have been secretly couching.
What I am saying is that there is creation, then there is manifestation. A thing is not created when we see it, but rather before. For various reasons we may have difficulty manifesting our creations; we feel all the glitz and glamour we’d created and can explain it in great detail, but we do not understand how to transport it from darkness to light. Creation requires darkness, manifestation requires light. It is even more frustrating when we explicitly share our creation with someone, but they cannot see into our darkness so they don’t see the picture being shared. And as if that is not bad enough, when we do not respect the privacy that creation needs, and we go whispering about it, our creation can get squashed; like a driver reversing onto a child who was not visible to him. Because it is our creation, a part of us, we feel when it is crushed. Some of us are into dramatics, so with the death of our dream we call ourselves a failure and howl at the moon and blame God. A spider is never too perturbed by the destruction of its web. It knows that it can confidently swing from pillar to post and easily make a new one because its building materials are generated from within. How do we then who have superior intelligence, having seen the continuity of creation daily, operate from a perspective of lack? Reminding ourselves of our ability to continuously create would see us spending less time at pity parties.
Before I get lost, let me quickly say that in sharing a business plan we are sharing a manifestation and not a creation. From the time the business module is given to the time that the student is required to present a business plan, creation continuously takes place even as one goes about one’s daily affairs. The creation may undergo several changes to accommodate the manifestation that one prefers to be seen. The business plan/manifesto is a translation of the creation. Usually what is created is much more sophisticated and beyond articulation. There are many artists who do wonderful work, yet when you converse with them, they mention how dissatisfied they are at the end product. And there is the seamstress who is disappointed because the garment did not turn out exactly as she imagined. And the builder who stands back and looks at an excellent piece of architecture and is certain that with a bit more tweaking he would make it perfect, though it already seems that way. A part of us knows that no matter what we create, we will never be able to break it down and reconstruct it in this realm in its full glory. Hence a business plan presented to others should incur no fear, for we know that no matter how detailed it is, the listeners/viewers are only experiencing a limited translation of what we actually created. And we have the assurance that we can always tweak the manifestation (over our lifetime) until it comes close to the creation. Our preoccupation with this should be enough to keep us from being perturbed at who is trying to, or has successfully implemented sections of our manifesto.
Being made from the earth, we carry within us that memory of being void (the earth was void and without from), and we seek to fill that space with various things rather than trying to understand that space. So we over eat, we develop attachments, we pursue sexual connections, etc., or opt for consuming addictive substances which help us to drown out the sound and feel of the void. We are really in denial while crying out for help. If we take time to examine our voids, we’ll remember that it is a creative space and not something to be shunned. All our nothingness is something that needs to be organized to facilitate our creations. Whether we do this consciously or unconsciously, we engage in creative behaviours when we try to fill that void: food creates sustenance for the body and satiates us; attachments keep various people and things in our lives and satiates us on another level; sex as a mechanism allows one gender to enter the space of another making them one to co-create and satiates at yet another (balanced) level. So the void we feel is necessary as it stirs our creative desires, without which form/purpose would cease to be.
I also look at the void as a place where I meet with my Creator. A place where the mind is stilled and it is just Him and I and sheer nothingness and I can hear and see His intention before light is brought to it for all to see. And as paradoxes go, even as it is void, it is filled with everything that was, is, and will be, and it is a privilege to be allowed access for it is a secret place…the Secret Place of the Most High…that the spiritual traveler continuously discovers, and attempts to use the knowledge and experiences gained therein to conduct his/her affairs in the physical existence. Hence the void is not a scary black hole or lack in my life, but rather a sacred place where light is not required for clarity, where darkness does not hinder sight. Knowledge of the creation and perception of the manifestation vary from vessel to vessel. So as creators we need not worry who tries do what with our manifestations (the laws of the Universe dictate that they will pay in some form or fashion before they can benefit from that which they did not create), but rather, we try to be understanding. Understand that even as some of us are physically afraid of the dark, some are also afraid to explore the recesses of our soul where the duality of light and dark does not exist, where everything is in a state of nothingness, but it is here we must return time and again to create. Those who feast off the manifestations of others may do so because they feel out of step with their Creator. Creation is a spiritual occupation that takes us back to the presence and methods of our Creator. Having experienced this often enough, we lose our attachment to the manifestations and our worry of them being utilized by others.