What are The Four Secrets of Purposeful Living – from The Brook of Life?
The Four Secrets of the Brook hold the key to understanding and improving the quality of your life, no matter the stage of your journey. The Brook of Life presents the journey of life using these four ancient secrets. These secrets are interwoven with your desires, thoughts, values and actions, as well as the actions of other navigators of the brook.
So, are these secrets really secret?
No. Many individuals know parts of the contents of some of these secrets. However, even those who might know most of the contents might not understand them and how they apply to modern lives and careers. A pragmatic way to bring together ancient wisdom in a way it can be applied to enrich modern lives has been lacking. The systematic and practical philosophy of the Brook of Life and its parallel Principles of Purposeful Action have been developed to serve this need.
In the metaphorical Brook, the Four Secrets are presented via the Body (boat for action), Mind (oars for ethical balance) and Spirit (currents of desires), and the Supreme Creative Force (other navigators and the universe).
Since everything changes and flows all the time, we must continuously evolve and grow to get where we want to go. Life is incomplete without the Four Secrets of the Brook. These secrets are illustrated here through images of a navigator of the Brook.
Pete Cameron, a young software designer, learns and applies the four secrets to his life and career and achieves happiness and fulfillment, in If I Had Known.
First Secret: Life is the Flow of Actions – Act with Purpose
You are the navigator of your Brook. Your boat represents your actions and the strategy for your journey in life. Life is the flow of actions, so your actions determine who you are and where you are headed.
The secret of action is inspired by the Yoga of Action, first described by Vedic sages some 6,000 years ago. Karam Yoga is a cornerstone of Sikh teachings. The Twelve-Step Framework for Purposeful Action integrates the ancient wisdom of Karam Yoga with modern management practices to provide a systematic way to conduct all actions.
Second Secret: Your Values Determine Your Happiness
The oars of your boat represent your Value System and your ethical balance. The two oars represent positive and negative core values that balance your boat and guide your journey while sensing the currents in the flow. Your ethical balance determines your happiness.
Five Negative Core Values of the Brook Value System are derived from ancient Indian Vedic sages in the form of five drivers of negative of human action. These are lust, anger, greed, possessiveness, and arrogance. These negative values are the hallmark of Takers.
Five Positive Core Values of the Brook Value System provide the counterbalance to promote positive human behavior. These are truth (integrity), love (commitment), faith (persistence), (oneness) teamwork and (sharing) communication. These positive values foster trust and encourage initiative and confidence. They are the hallmark of Givers.
This value system for ethical living follows decades of research into the major world religions and philosophies and modern ethical, management and leadership thought, as well as the personal struggles and life experiences of the author.
Third Secret: You are a Bundle of Desires – Manage them
Four Levels of Desire influence your thoughts and guide your actions. They are stirred by the currents in the waters and transmitted to your mind through your senses. Your growth towards fulfillment is determined by the desires that drive your actions and form your values. The key to the purpose and meaning of life is found in desires. The secret of the Four Levels of Desire is derived from the ancient Indian Vedic sages. Yet, they are strongly relevant to modern life.
The first two levels of desire promote taking, leading to a life of dissatisfaction and unhappiness.
- Lust – desires that spring from lust and the need for survival and procreation, even at the expense of others
- Wealth – desires to accumulate material wealth and power and to be respected and loved by others
The second two foster giving and pave the way for a life of happiness, fulfillment and ultimately freedom from all bonds of desire.
- Service – desires to serve, give to others and to love and care for others
- Freedom – desires to be detached from all desires and to be disassociated and free of the trappings of material existence
The Buddha taught that attachment to the desires of taking were the cause of human pain and suffering. Freedom from pain and suffering, and thus happiness and fulfillment, is found in disassociating from the desires of taking and pursuing the desires of giving.
Fourth Secret: We are All in it Together
The Archetypes of the Brook complete the metaphor of the Brook journey. There are Six Business Archetypes and Two Grand Archetypes. These navigators interact and influence one another and affect their flows. This concept of Archetypes of the Brook has been refined over a period of four decades through research, testing and application. This has resulted in the BrookMaster Personal Assessment and Leadership Coaching Game.