Ten Beacons of Light
1. Self Awareness and Mindful Constructive Living: Seek greater awareness of emotions, thoughts, and motivations. Through quiet attentiveness to felt experience, we become familiar with ourselves. This is living mindfully. With awareness of emotional triggers and behavioral responses, we choose a more productive course of action leading to fulfillment of our intentions.
2. Compassion Towards Self and Others: Compassionately accepting ourselves, where we are in our personal journey, creates a friendly atmosphere for growth. Harsh judgments hurt, even when coming from inside. Shortcomings are an inherent part of living in this complex world. During our practice of mindfulness (Beacon #1), we can recognize our critical self-judgements and replace them with kindness. We use the same compassionate approach with others, forming bonds, and creating closeness. We must recognize suffering in others. Be understanding of their weaknesses and imperfections. Constantly reminding yourself that no one is all “good” or all “bad.”
3. Commitment to Personal Work: Make self improvement a life long practice. Seek ways to improve in the following areas:
5. Knowing and Honoring Healthy Values: Our increased mindfulness reveals our values. This knowledge guides us with choices. Knowing what we value, we can strive to live in alignment with those values and work to eradicate values that are harmful to ourselves and others.
6. Purpose Driven: Life without purpose is mundane. A purpose transcends immediate discomforts, giving hope. Our purpose does not need to be fixed. Life is dynamic and as such our purpose may change.
7. Courage: With courage, we act in the face of fear. We need courage to follow values in opposition to widely accepted norms. Courage is the motivating power, pushing us forward into the darkness of the unknown.
8. Positive Associations: We need healthy relationships to support in times of trouble. We must understand that our inner resources are limited. By actively seeking friends that lift, we increase our ability to give.
9. Honest and Open Communication: Effective communication skills are not natural. These skills take effort to develop. Our mindfulness practices open up our minds for connection. We must try not to coerce, force, compel, punish, reward, manipulate, boss, criticize, blame, complain, nag, badger, or withdraw in order to obtain our way. Instead, we openly share our wants and need but accept “no” for an answer when appropriate.
10. Contributing to the Whole: We don't live in isolation. We are part of a larger whole. We must live with respect for our environment (world, community, family) and work to improve each through active participation.a