Automatic mechanisms

  In the previous section we compared human development with the building of a pyramid where each stone must be set in place one after the other. The question is therefore now posed as to how the observance of the basic rights of existence can be practised in order to reach the desired state of total harmony and happiness as quickly as possible and in particular how to remain in this state. How do we build on our pyramid of personal development in the most efficient way possible? Can we attend courses on it or is special training offered?

The good news is: Yes; there are lots opportunities for such training, they do not cost money and are on offer always and at any time – these opportunities arise in nothing other than our daily life! In that we live, we automatically participate in such training. We will come back to this again below.

 

We have seen that the basic rights of existence must be respected in order to enter a lasting state of total harmony. It may therefore be tempting to try to isolate ourselves as far away from civilisation as possible so that we can live our lives alone without violating the basic rights of existence. However this would hardly be the most efficient method of developing ourselves further:

So that we can maintain the basic rights of existence in every situation, we should really «live» them, in other words to - as it were - «be» the basic rights of existence. It should not be difficult for us to follow the law in fact we should be able to follow it automatically. This automatic mechanism is unfortunately only partially natural to us, we can however develop it within us by practice.

Try comparing this with driving a car: The driver of a car moves the steering wheel automatically so as to stay in the correct traffic lane, just as he also automatically presses on the brake pedal with his foot in order to brake – or do you each time have to think when driving «I must turn the steering wheel clockwise a little so that I don’t get onto the wrong traffic lane» or «now I must take my right foot off the accelerator pedal and put it on the brake pedal and then press with my foot»? This is a typical automatic mechanism, which we have acquired by practice. We do this automa­tically without having to think and, for example, we can simultaneously have a conversation with someone without any problem.

 

When learning to drive a car individual differences can be seen: Whilst some people initially have great difficulties with reversing or parking at the side of the road in narrow parking spaces, others have more difficulty in learning the meanings of traffic signals and converting them into automatic actions. If the will to learn the corresponding ability exists then success will eventually be forthcoming.

The characteristic in the example of driving a car is the fact that we can only acquire an automatic mechanism by deliberate practice (practice makes perfect). This is also true for very many other examples, such as skiing, speaking foreign languages, making music, singing, calculating, pairs dancing etc. Or have you ever tried to play a musical instrument without practice! – It is simply not possible.

 

It is just the same when it comes to respecting the basic rights of existence: It is only possible to learn the ability of how to observe the basic rights of existence in every situation, by deliberately practising it as frequently as possible. It is only when this has become an automa­tic mechanism, that we have achieved our objective.

Naturally it is also possible for the non-observance of the basic rights of existence to become an automatic mechanism. If in a given situation I always react incorrectly in the same way, then this incorrect reaction will also become automatic in time. Correction of this behaviour pattern will also be correspondingly more difficult and troublesome later!

However in that we avoid the practising of the basic rights of existence as far as possible it is true that we thereby prevent certain personal violations of the basic rights of existence, but we also do not learn to live them. We would be like a musician who no longer plays his musical instrument for fear of playing wrong notes. Exactly the opposite is true: The more frequently the musician practises, the lower the number of errors (such as wrong notes) he makes. A virtuoso musician will finally reach the stage where he virtually fuses with his instrument, without having to make any effort he simply plays it. He certainly has no concerns about playing wrong notes: He has full mastery of the instrument, therefore it too will not produce any wrong notes.