09 Sep Living The Four Agreements: The Circle of Fire
I had an epiphany last week as I pondered a line from don Miguel’s The Circle of Fire prayer. While the world loves The Four Agreements, don Miguel once told me his favorite book is The Circle of Fire, formerly titled “Prayers.”
Here is the line that caught my attention from the Circle of Fire prayer:
“We will live our lives with gratitude, love, loyalty, and justice
Beginning with ourselves, and continuing with our brothers and sisters.”
In these two lines are hidden wisdom for how we can deepen our relationship with The Four Agreements.
First, we start with ourselves. To live The Four Agreements, to embody the wisdom of these simple but life-changing teachings, we must first let go of blaming others or trying to fix or change the people around us. We must own that we are responsible for our dream, that we are the artist of our creation, and commit to taking action to change what doesn’t serve us.
Here is how the words gratitude, love, loyalty, and justice are keys to unlock the power of The Four Agreements:
• Use your word to share your gratitude
• Replace taking things personally with unconditional love
• Become loyal to the truth
• Justice is doing your best and letting go of the rest
Here are the action steps to take:
Be Impeccable with Your Word: Gratitude
It is easy to get caught in the bad habit of using your words to complain, judge, or blame. This includes your inner voice; the way you talk to yourself as well as the way you talk to others. To come back into alignment with the power of your word, focus on what you are grateful for, not on what is not working. Transform your thoughts by using your words to name the gratitudes that we so often overlook, from your beating heart to the wheels on your car to the kindness of the woman at the store.
Don’t Take Anything Personally: Love
When you take something personally, you often close down as a way to protect or defend yourself. When you feel attacked or hurt by someone else’s actions, sometimes you might withdraw or lash out. Whenever you notice yourself taking something personally, apply the balm of love. First, love yourself even though you took something personally. Then, practice loving the other person beneath their actions. View their actions as clothing they are wearing, and choose to honor and respect the person, even if you disagree with their actions.
Don’t Make Assumptions: Loyalty
Make your number one loyalty to truth. What do you know for sure to be true? Keep releasing the old assumptions in favor for what you know. When we dedicate ourselves to naming what we know to be true, assumptions decrease and awareness increases. Loyalty means we are willing to put our energy and actions behind something we believe in. And while the truth might be uncomfortable sometimes, it is always the path of least resistance! Be loyal to your own truth, and let your actions stem from that loyalty to self.
Do Your Best: Justice
If you notice you are doing more than your best or less than your best, stop and adjust. If you always do less than your best, then that will be reflected in your experience. If you do more than your best, that will also be reflected. I love don Miguel’s saying that true justice is only paying for a mistake you make once. Take the critical judge out of the picture and let the heart of justice come forward so you can witness the affect of action and reaction. When we live understanding justice life is simple: do your best and let of of the rest.
Every day, dedicate yourself to gratitude, love, loyalty, and justice, and watch your actions flow effortlessly like a clear blue river through a peaceful landscape.
HeatherAsh’s apprenticeship with don Miguel Ruiz, author of The Four Agreements, began in 1994, and she now teaches with the Ruiz family. She is the author of The Toltec Path of Transformation and founder of Toci, The Toltec Center of Creative Intent. www.toci.org