Follow What Has Heart and Meaning

Your work is to discover your work And then with all you heart

To give yourself to it.

 – The Dhammapada


The Visionmaker's Code is an ethical framework that supports right action. My last post provides an overview of the seven conventions that guide action. The next series of posts will explore each convention individually.


As we have seen, unethical and immoral behavior, and the abuse of power always result in collective calamity. The news media is filled with accounts of talented people who have been overcome by temptation and fallen hard as a result.  A code of ethics, then, is a necessary source of guidance to ensure that our talent is matched by our integrity.


The first convention of the Visionmaker's Code comes from The Four-Fold Way, by Angeles Arrien. Follow What Has Heart and Meaning is a reminder that the distractions of bright lights, pretty people, and personal wealth is not the raison d'etre for a Visionmaker. 


The Visionmaker's first allegiance is to the journey of meaning, which emerges from the heart. Paying attention to what has heart and meaning is the Visionmaker's way of staying true to the Self, to a purpose greater than the ego, and to avoid the traps that visit those who seek to make change in the world.


Angeles Arrien reminds us that, "Paying attention (to what has heart and meaning) opens us to the human resources of love, gratitude, acknowledgement, and validation."


It also reminds us of what is truly important in meeting our three primary responsibilities–the responsibility to self, the responsibility to others and the responsibility to the larger world in which we live.


These are things that can be easily forgotten if we are pursuing the cultural dream of what constitutes success-money, sex and power. Too many talented people have forgotten their heart's dream and their primary responsibilities to grab the brass ring, only to find that it is an empty prize. Or to find that they have broken the law to get it.


Being anchored in the heart, and not in a collective trance of consensus that declares the pursuit of power as the ultimate the prize, allows a Visionmaker to attend to what is most meaningful and in alignment with the singular journey that each of us was born to make.


© Patrick O’Neill 2009. All rights reserved.

Posted on February 20, 2009 and filed under The Visionmakers Code.