Jocko Willink Vs. Spirituality
I have been trapped in a pendulum-like life for a while now, trying to figure out a way to stay balanced.
You would think that these personalities are polar opposites, but over time I have realised their teachings somewhat benefit each other, and often have many similarities.
What do I mean?…
Discipline Equals Spiritual Freedom
The title of Jocko’s book, and a key teaching that he prescribes, is Discipline Equals Freedom.
Many people may think that this means you lock yourself into a rigid schedule and act like an unemotional robot, but that’s not the case.
People don’t just bliss out on love, it takes practice.
I once heard the Dalai Lama say that everybody wants to be happy but it takes hard work!
Hopefully you can see the overlap between these two doctrines.
If you apply Jocko’s Discipline Equals Freedom to your spiritual practice or training you increase the likelihood of achieving a better quality of inner peace and joy.
If you have the discipline to meditate every day, you will develop the awareness to better serve and protect others.
If you have the discipline to train your body and energise with the right foods, you will be more able to serve and protect others.
Notice the pattern?
As Shaun learned from Rickson Gracie, not compromising on fundamental areas of your life (food, relationships, sleep, movement, etc.) creates a feeling of such vitality, that you deliver nothing but your best service in things that are relevant to your soul, whether that be as a husband, wife, father, friend, mother, employer or employee, etc.
Such service is the key to developing your overall happiness, mental health and spiritual freedom.
Good Vs. Surrender
Another one of Jocko’s teachings is “GOOD.”
When things are going bad or a problem arises, Jocko repeats to himself or his team, “GOOD” – a chance to get better, a chance to heal, a chance to find a solution, a chance to improve.”
In essence, you accept the reality of every situation and use it to your advantage. You develop motivation from it.
This is similar to the spiritual teaching of “SURRENDER.”
People can perceive this as giving up, but it is not!
Surrendering means to accept the reality of the present moment without judgement.
If you find yourself in a bad situation, this is how god, or source, or the divine, or the universe, or Tao, wanted it to be and how it should be.
As Jocko says, “don’t get all emotional and bummed out about it.”
Accept and surrender to the reality of “now,” trusting yourself and god, then take the necessary action from a calm, positive and logical mind.
When life hands you a lemon make lemonade!
According to Karma and/or the Law of Attraction, it may be that you have attracted such negative situations by your thoughts or previous actions.
You can combat this by using “Discipline Equals Freedom” to stay on the positive path, allowing you to attract positive things, people and events into your life.
All the above requires action but you don’t have to charge like a bull at a gate, striving for instant perfection, it takes time and inner peace.
All great spiritual teachers were required to take action out of a calm, relaxed mind at some point – Buddha, Saint Francis of Assisi end especially Jesus!
Even after being whipped, tortured and nailed to a cross by his wrists, Jesus still had the loving discipline to say, “forgive them father, for they know not what they do.”
Whether you’re religious or not, there is still something we can all learn from this story. I challenge anybody to go through that much pain and still forgo their ego to show pure love for their supposed enemy.
Until the next time, whether you use “Good” or “Surrender,” pick yourself up, dust yourself off and embrace every moment!