The term “warrior” is often associated with power, chivalry, honor, integrity, bravery, courage, and battle. However, there is a difference between a warrior and a soldier. A soldier is trained to follow orders and respect authority. A warrior is more autonomous and independent.
You have probably lived many past lives. And of those lives, there is a good chance that at least some of them have been lived as a warrior/warrioress. I know I have lived many lives as a warrior. As a result, I find it difficult to put down the sword and shield at times, even if they are not needed. So in this life I am learning to transition from a warrior identity to a spiritual identity. Rather than to completely suppress or deny the qualities I learned as a warrior, I can apply these qualities in living as a Spiritual Warrior.
Some very famous Spiritual Warriors are Nelson Mandela, Gandhi, and Martin Luther King, Jr.
Too some, combining the concept of a warrior to spiritual realms may seem like a paradox. And those who are pacifists at heart may rankle at the thought of warriorship. However, a warrior can be passionate about peace. In addition to that, a Spiritual Warrior/Warrioress has the following characteristics:
- Is creative
- Never give up
- Seizes the day
- Are goal-oriented
- Embraces self-discovery
- Is committed to principles
- Is in touch with their heart
- Forgives and avoids revenge
- Able to share and give to others
- Use strength and power to overcome obstacles
- Takes responsibility for his/her choices and actions
- Serves with love and gives generously while giving to themselves
- Have a strong sense of justice and will defend what they perceive as right
- Are always ready to protect and save loved ones and innocent characters
- Is flexible and adaptable; able to act independently as well as be a team player
- Masters him/herself and overcomes moral issues and all weaknesses of character
- Challenges fear, lies, false beliefs, and judgments that create suffering and unhappiness
A Spiritual Warrior/Warrioress has a lifetime commitment to:
- Study, train and practice
- Develop persistence and mental focus
- Develop discipline both internally and externally
- Face difficulty, pain, discomfort, discouragement, fear without quitting
Following are some examples of the Spiritual Warrior/Warrioress concept:
The Buddhist definition of a Spiritual Warrior is one who combats self-ignorance, which is the ultimate source of suffering. The Spiritual Warrior’s practice is compassionately helping others with wisdom. In 1976, Chogyam Trungpa established the Shambhala Training program on spiritual warriorship. He wrote The Sacred Path of the Warrior.
Jock Brocas wrote a book called The Book of 6 Rings: Secrets of the Spiritual Warrior, which is about increasing intuitive abilities. He defines a Spiritual Warrior’s characteristics as:
- A warrior believes.
- A warrior is mindful.
- A warrior is humble.
- A warrior co-creates.
- A warrior is grateful.
- A warrior gives service.
- A warrior does not worry.
- A warrior is devoid of ego and desire.
- A warrior is relaxed and self-confident.
- A warrior forgives and is compassionate.
Dan Millman wrote a series of books about the Peaceful Warrior. The first one, Way of the Peaceful Warrior, was also made into a movie. It is an autobiographical account of an athlete, who is guided by a powerful old warrior named Socrates, while he is training.
Carlos Castaneda wrote a series of books about Don Juan Matus, who was a Nagual shaman. He is a Man of Knowledge who teaches Castaneda much about wisdom, clarity, shamanism, and warriorship. Castaneda’s book, The Wheel of Time, is a compilation of quotes, mostly on warriors, from 7 of his books.
In Erotic Body Prayer, Kirk Prine says that the basic definition of a Peaceful Warrior is one who is willing to know oneself and willing to face one’s fears. He says:
“Peaceful, a word of inner direction, compassion, mercy, negotiation, alignment, centeredness and tranquility, joins paradoxically, with the word warrior, which expresses the energy of outer directedness, protection, boundary keeping and fighting. Together they combine to produce harmony, freedom and wholeness. Queer folk often embody a 2-spirit worldview, and behave in a way that synthesizes these 2 energies.“
The Peaceful Warrior is the first of 6 Queer Archetypes that Kirk has created. The other 5 are: the Sacred Prostitute, The Lover, The Elder, The Prophet, and The Mystic.
Kirk defines the 5 themes of the Peaceful Warrior’s role as:
- One who is able to ask for help.
- One who is his/her own authority.
- One who deals with conflict heartfully.
- One who lives in their “yes” or “no”.
- One who sets or expands boundaries.
In Spiritual Warrior, John-Roger identifies 5 characteristics to exercise each day to bring a spiritual warrior closer to Spirit:
- The Spiritual Warrior accepts all things.
- The Spiritual Warrior cooperates with all things.
- The Spiritual Warrior understands all things.
- The Spiritual Warrior has enthusiasm for all things.
- The Spiritual Warrior has empathy for all things.
He identifies 3 qualities are especially vital to the Spiritual Warrior:
- Intention. Spiritual Warriors make sure their intention is very clear because they know that what they put out into the world is what they get back.
- Impeccability. Spiritual Warriors use their energy wisely and purposefully, conserving and directing it so that they align themselves with Spirit.
- Ruthlessness is the Spiritual Warrior’s Sword of Truth, the Sword of the Heart, which cuts away all that is no longer necessary or useful.
Paulo Coelho, in his book, Warrior of the Light, defines a Light Warrior as one who appreciates the miracle of being alive, accepts failure, and becomes the person s/he wants to be.
While learning indigenous Peruvian medicine, we learn that the journey of the peaceful warrior is about the death of the Ego. In order to step beyond death and fear, the Ego must be surrendered. This can be done by creating right relationship and owning both the dark and light side of ourselves.
Celeste Adams recognizes the Magician as the archetype that surpasses the Warrior and the Martyr. She says that Warrior struggles and the Martyr is a victim, but the Magician believes in infinite potential and possibility. The archetype of Magicians includes medicine men, wizards, witches, shamans, brujos, curanderos, doctors, and inventors.
MY ROADMAP FROM MARTYR TO MAGICIAN
As a synthesis of the various teachings on Spiritual Warriorship, I created the following 5 archetypes. They may seem like masculine archetypes and may well be well-suited for men. I believe that modern men are in search of strong archetypes that they can model from. But also, let us try to reduce the amount of gender-labeling we put on characteristics. Can we not just identify all characteristics as human rather than classifying them as either male or female?
The Spiritual Warriorship archetypes can almost be following as a journey of self-discovery and growth.
Martyr – We all begin at the Martyr stage, that place of being a victim to all that happens to us. Blame is placed on all the forces that are seemingly out of our control. As martyrs we are in a state of codependence because our boundaries are weak.
Warrior – Then we rise up out of Martyrdom by becoming Warriors. We step out of victimhood and into our personal power. We learn to establish boundaries and stand up for ourselves. We can distinguish between what is me and what is not me. We learn to develop powerful characteristics that are integrated into our personalities. We begin accept blame as a result of our own actions.
Pacifist – To balance this war-like nature, we must spend time as a Pacifist, learning the ways of the Heart. We learn to erase blame by forgiving ourselves and others. We no longer follow the crowd but instead follow our own beliefs.
Wanderer – Eventually we come to a point when we realize we need to synthesize all that we have learned. That sends us on a journey as a Wanderer, roaming the dimensions, on a spiritual quest for answers.
Magician – Finally as Magicians, we have learned how to integrate the Self with Spirit. We become whole, wise, balanced, and at peace within our own souls. We have learned that there is no such thing as blame because everything happens at the perfect time and place for the perfect reason.
Copyright © 2014 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. http://www.DrakeInnerprizes.com