Would you be Cowboy or Rose?

Tea Rose

Original written 1993.

(This is only my personal belief system, not The Ultimate Rationale, and if it challenges you to re-examine your own personal beliefs, I will have accomplished my purpose. — DH)

Nobody plans to prevent a crisis — or do they?

  • We rarely reach the point of arranging for our own self-change.
    • “The developing personality obeys only brute necessity.”– C. Jung
  • People are best motivated by pain, when their life is shit.
  • Nobody admits they chose to drop out of school, wreck their cars, go to jail, divorce, lose their children, their health, jobs, and friends — but that’s what they actually did!
  • Nobody claims that surviving crisis has something to do with their innate strengths and value to others — but it does!

We have a buried wisdom inside of us, an internal life-force.

  • You did not create yourself or will your dysfunctional behavior.

  • We do not belong to ourselves, we found ourselves here as the expression of a life-force that we don’t know.
  • Our bodies are awesomely complicated and beautiful.
  • We do not will our hearts to beat, our lungs to breathe.
  • We cannot will ourselves to be other than what we are.
  • You only have stewardship of your body.

  • All we really own is our time, thoughts, and behavior, or in other words, our process, our internal selves.
  • All of our “possessions”, or our context, our external selves, are transitory, vain, and false.
  • The physical self is the tool for the education of the meta-physical self (mind, emotions, “spirit”) contained within it.

We have forgotten our true nature

  • We live in a culture that is materialistic, externally-referenced paternalistic (authoritarian), and discouraging to spiritual growth because it is “irrational.”
  • Human beings have become human doings because of low self-esteem and the focus on not making “mistakes.”
    • Our high technology produces garbage because we put garbage into it. We can go to the moon, but we can’t communicate!
  • Our mind has become a hypervigilant, tyrannical defender of our body, which is only the temporary carriage for our spirit. Our mind is not our master. Our deepest values, our spirit, our consciousness, is the true master.
  • Sales people know that all real decisions are made irrationally.
  • Addiction can be seen as an attempt to escape the rational mind, a craving for spiritual awareness.
    • It’s easier in the short term to be a cowboy (illusion of control) than to make the effort to be a rose with long-term survival (acceptance).
  • Acceptance (honesty) is more powerful at removing fear, guilt and worry than any possible means of control.

Our intellect is both our Best Friend and Biggest Obstacle to Growth

  • The mind is a powerful tool for organizing information into patterns by noticing similarities and differences, details.
  • New perceptions are always fitted into old perceptions.
  • Paradigm shifts, whole-pattern “override programs,” are difficult to install, require us to hold down the “on” button.
  • Unfortunately, as information becomes more complex, it is easier to notice differences, missing components, and negative features.
  • You only see Yourself, the Exterior is You

  • Our perceptions are filtered and colored by our entire life history of learning, everything is subjective.
  • Everywhere you go, there your negativity is.
  • We have met the enemy, and he is us.
  • We are trapped by our own self-limiting beliefs and attitudes, not by someone or something outside of ourselves.
  • New evidence suggests that our attitudes exist at the cellular level and predispose us to heart attacks, cancer, illness of all kinds.
  • What we resist, persists, causing depression and exhaustion.
  • When we try to control what we cannot control, we lose control over the things that we can control (thoughts and behavior).
  • Depression is a loss of control of thoughts, causes headaches directly.
  • Depression is an attempt to control, a refusal to face a crisis and die a mini-death, putting the crisis on hold with analysis-paralysis and self-pity, which is inverted pride.
  • Minimal mental activity combined with high emotional involvement and physical activity produces serenity and joy.

Life is a Test on Learning How to Love

  • Near-death research indicates that a Pop Quiz occurs moments after you are clinically dead. (What did you learn about, and accomplish with, love?)
    • Awareness of our mortality empowers us to live true to our deepest values and experience our vitality more fully.
  • Spirituality and recovery is the internal freedom that comes with believing that we are capable and lovable.
  • It is also coming home to the natural self, and having the answers to three vital questions: Who am I? Who am I with? Where am I going?

Crisis is an Opportunity to Learn, to Wake Up

  • Chinese word for “crisis” is combination of two characters, “danger” and “opportunity.”
  • Crisis is a threat of loss or an actual loss which arouses anxiety, grief, guilt, anger, depression, or craziness.
  • The felt danger is the loss of our dreams and false pride.
  • The pain of the crisis evokes a strong desire to run to the old and familiar behaviors, no matter how dysfunctional.
  • The real danger is the loss of our true self if we believe we are isolated or unteachable, a “mistake.”
  • The grief, guilt, and anger provide the fuel, the energy, to break out of the cocoon and learn to fly.
    • Our problems are stepping stones to freedom.
  • Anyone who does the work for the caterpillar (enables) robs it of the strength it would have gained from the struggle.

See the Grief for your Cocoon

  • Usually people feel worse before feeling better.
  • The caterpillar is not clear that it is going to be a butterfly.
  • The loss at first appears meaningless, to be endured, ignored, anaesthetized, or avoided.
  • What was once our security or even our delight is now a chain around our neck.
  • Learning is the painful reorganization of what we thought we knew.
  • We are being forced to discover inner resources that we are not aware of and do not know how to use.
  • Our old “friends” and our family cannot understand what we are facing. We feel isolated, and we are.
  • Of course we are angry!
  • Roses grow best in shit.

Growing up is Learning How to Learn

  • Maturation is the process of becoming involved with ourselves and the changes we go through, so that we see “the big picture.”
  • As we grow, we move from dependence to independence, from needy to giving, from negative to positive, from rigid to flexible, from unrealistic to realistic, from clever to simple, from fear to wisdom, from suffering to harmony.

Ability to Learn is based on Self-Esteem

  • Self-esteem gives us the durability to roll with the punches.
  • Awareness of strengths and limitations is true self-respect, allowing us to accept ourselves as human, teachable.
  • Tell yourself: I am lovable, worthwhile, useful, purposeful.
    • I am significant, I belong, my impact spreads beyond others.
    • I am capable, I will survive, I have survived, I have learned.
  • “Life..(is)..a very great gift…not because of what it gives us, but because of what it enables us to give others.” — Thomas Merton

Self-Esteem is Humility and Love

  • Humility is a sense of belonging to a larger system than ourselves, having a Higher Power, acknowledging our limits

LOVE = Letting Old Vanity Evaporate

  • Ego games of fear and control are opposed to love
  • Tell yourself: I am fallible, I don’t know everything, I’m not perfect
    • I am learning how to love myself and others
    • I am grateful for this opportunity to learn

Check your expectations, your “old” mind-set

  • Self-honesty produces insight and harmony with new reality.
  • Frustrated expectations are the only cause of stress
  • Can I change my expectations to be more flexible?

Learn to love each other, and you will get the love you need

  • “No effort of the self can remove the self from its own self-centeredness.” — William Temple
  • If you are lonely, your best friend is another lonely person.
  • Accepting others as mirrors for ourselves (compassion) allows us to believe that we have been accepted, supported, and guided, so that we can take risks (action).

Practice listening

  • Listening produces a safe space for others
  • Trust others’ process – they can/will learn, change
  • Feedback should be specific, helpful, brief, objective
  • Avoid giving advice!

You have everything you need

  • And it is indestructible. Consciousness, spirit, lives forever.

Trust the Process, there is NO RETREAT

  • Humanity evolves as a unitary body, relentlessly moving.
  • Lessons will be repeated until learned. The only real mistake is to give up.
  • When we make mistakes, it shows that we are willing to try.
  • There are no problems, only undefined situations. We must learn to live with partial knowledge, partial power, partial freedom.
  • You can run, but you can’t hide. Suicide is not an option.
  • Increased intuition, letting go of rational control is the process and the goal.

The Crisis is a signal from our internal self

  • The God or life-force within us is ready to grow


  1. Yes, my name is David Hazen. I was ego surfing, googling my own name, and I came across you, David Hazen. You hold such a similar philosophy of life. I am amazed and awed by your words!

    I am a 57 year old married guy, just now going through an early retirement from playing the role of a middle school principal. I love the teachers and students I work with daily, but I want to work more on my inner life. I live with a chronically ill wife who teaches me to forgive, let go of judgments and discover myself in her regularly. I am astounded by my good fortune in life to discover that the world is really just a reflection of my projections, beliefs and thought patterns. I see myself in everyone; I fall in love with everyone.

    Again, I am delighted to read your words! If you have the time, please contact me!

  2. Much, much wisdom here! I honor the Spirit in you that has taught you so much, no doubt through your own trials and triumphs. Thank you for writing all this down. We all have a slightly different interpretation and filtering of Truth but the light of it definitely comes shining through in your words. Blessings and gratitude.

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