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The most popular highlight from this newsletter was our From The Director article “Driven by Soul – What is that?”
Happy New Year everyone!
This year, I thought it may be worthwhile starting by simply explaining our logo – in part because after some reflection (yes my mid-life crisis) – I think I understand it myself!
As many people would know, I’m a father of 5 children and it is said that children teach you more about yourself than you teach them. I’ve found this to be true. And so, whilst trying to teach them along the way, I stumbled across something. Spirituality.
Basically – we all “think”, that is, we all have thoughts. Thoughts come to us all the time –
automatically. So, the question is – how are they then different from breathing and digesting food? That’s to say – are they really under our control? In fact, the more difficult thing to do is to stop thinking. To have pauses between thoughts. And basically then – who is that “you” behind your thoughts. That’s who/what I found to be the best description of a person’s “soul” or spirit. The more conscious presence which has an awareness of the fact that our thoughts are just another thing. An impulse of the brain. Yet, we’re able to look from behind that impulse to question it and realise that those sophisticated thoughts are again, much like breathing – subconscious and not all chosen. Our thoughts are programmed, habitual and affected by all manner of prior conditioning and therefore don’t always lead us to the best conclusions in the present.
Hold on, don’t switch off and call me a crackpot just yet!
Going on from that – our thoughts are rather obsessed with a sense of ego – “my life”, “my car”, “my job”. I am this, I am that. This isn’t something to feel “guilty” about. That’s not the point. We’re all basically built like this (me included) and much of our life is then driven by our ego – that precious sense of self which wants to carve space out in a big world through thoughts and material possessions. Trying incessantly to define “my life”. Yet, there is an inherent goal of “disconnection” in how our ego operates to achieve this. One way or another, thoughts about “my” life/”my” anything leads us to stand apart – separated from the world around us, and always wanting more.
Our egos are very fragile, worried about what others may think of us. Worried about how to protect and defend what is “me and mine”. For example – complaining itself can be a purely ego driven activity. What we’re basically saying is “that person or thing is wrong and I am right”. Essentially in complaining we prop up our ego. But again, the ego is fragile. It’s scared by nature, easily threatened, fearful of insignificance, oblivion and ultimately fearful of death. All sorts of modern day vultures pray on this, our fragile egos – selling us things we just plainly don’t need, yet we buy…in a futile mission to satisfy our ego. But it can never be – satisfied that is.
Yet behind that ego lays something deeper – something that knows that the actual truth is that
there is no “my” life. There is only – life. There is no “my land or property” – there is only the earth, beyond which lays an incomprehensible and amazing space called the universe. And in all of that, in life – we actually stand completely connected, as one. With plants, animals, rivers, mountains, stars and one another (the next time someone calls you a “star” – remember – you literally are J!). If that thing which connects us all, which is much deeper than the ego, can be tapped into, then we can carry about our functions in this world in a much more harmonious and peaceful way, surrendering to life for its unfathomable divine beauty, eternal nature and therefore function without fear. In this sense, we are at our best and most creative when we are, in the present moment – “Driven by Soul”.
Now it would seem to be a contradictory thing, on first inspection to name something “Atticus Health” and yet dispel the value of “I”, the value of self. After all, what about treating everyone as “individuals” and that quote by Atticus Finch on the back of our business cards
“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view”
Doesn’t that rely on caring about “I”.
Yes it does. However, the point is – we strive to treat everyone with utmost respect and attention because we value every single life. For every single life, in being part of “life”, is precious, significant and worthy. And, if it means that we need to treat you as an individual, to fully empathise, to allow us to help you as best we can (which is true) – then that’s what we’ll do. Driven by an unconditional love of “life” – Driven by Soul.
Ok – it’s cool to say I’m a new age crackpot NOW. Kum ba yah!
Acknowledgement: Thanks to the teachings of Eckhart Tolle for some of the inspiration for this article. Also, sincere apologies to anyone who draws any religious inferences or takes religious objection to all or any part of this article. Definitely not at all my intention. Yet it just didn’t feel right to avoid writing it for the sake of political correctness! So please do forgive me. The only intention is to explain, humbly, my thoughts on a matter that’s lead me to find a sense of increased peace in my personal life, and hopefully by sharing, may help increase the amount of collective unconditional love and peace in this world. And, of course, to explain – Driven by Soul!