Everything is God and God is everything. This is the thesis defended by Miguel Ruiz in his book " The 4 Toltec agreements ". And we men are an integral part of this whole. The author tells us on page 16 that everything that exists is only the manifestation of this one being called God. And so, we are the manifestation of God. Thus, in the image of God, the true "me" is pure love and light.
Yet we are programmed by society to believe otherwise. Miguel Ruiz, in the 4 Toltec agreements, explains to us that 95% of the beliefs that we have engraved in our memory are only lies, and we suffer from believing in these lies. What are these lies saying? That we are evil beings, who are capable of doing only reprehensible actions.
If we look at human society, we find that the main reason why it is so difficult to live in it is that it is ruled by fear. The fear of hell drives us not to steal, commit adultery or kill. What if hell didn't exist? Or rather, what if hell was just a state of mind? Will we commit the worst atrocities ever known? Society shapes us so that our only answer is an emphatic “yes”. Quite simply because we have grown up thinking that man is inherently evil and that fear prevents him from bringing out the worst in him.
Miguel Ruiz, through this book, shows us that on the contrary, fear keeps us from bringing out the best in us. Man, being the manifestation of God, that is to say a be of light and love, finds himself hiding who he is because of fear, the injunctions imposed on him by society during his socialization. He has been presented with a being that he is not and he is kept in fear, which prevents him from discovering the extraordinarily luminous being that he really is.
In order to be love as we are called to be and to bear witness to it around us, Miguel Ruiz tells us that we must get rid of the various agreements to which we have signed during our socialization, which prevent us from living fully. and above all to have healthy relationships with those around us. He then shares with us the 4 Toltec agreements on the basis of which, if we base our life, we can fully be the beings of light and love that we really are.
However, before discovering these 4 Toltec agreements, let's find out who this Miguel Ruiz is.
Who is Miguel Ruiz?
Miguel Ángel Ruiz Macías (or Don Miguel Ruiz) is a Mexican author, shaman and teacher born August 27, 1952 in Guadalajara, Mexico. Raised by a curandera (healer) mother and a nagual (Toltec shaman) grandfather, he is the youngest of 13 children. He will study medicine and later become a surgeon.
His life changed dramatically during a near-death experience in the early 1970s that would have inspired him to seek answers to existential questions in the Toltec tradition. He is dedicated to mastering ancient wisdom.
" The Four Toltec Agreements », a bestseller of New Age literature, published in 1997, sold more than four million copies (36th best-selling book of the 1990s according to the « New York Times »). With seven books to his credit, translated into 37 languages, Don Miguel Ruiz is known for being the champion of personal development, this willingly syncretic contemporary spirituality, centered on well-being.
In his books, he reveals to us his secrets for a fulfilling life. We have today the 4 Toltec agreements, if we want to know the joy of human existence.
The 4 Toltec Accords by Miguel Ruiz
“It's not death, but the risk of being alive and expressing who you really are that inspires the greatest fear. Just being yourself is what you dread the most”.The Four Toltec Agreements, P.29
Whether in our families or in the educational system that trained us, we have been taught how we should be. Be calm, studious and hardworking. This is the secret of success. We would do well to listen to the elders, to fit into the framework, to be perfect if we want to succeed in our lives. All these injunctions that keep us in a mold, creating fear in us to be ourselves, because to be oneself is to be a failure.
Every day we abuse each other. How do we do it? By lacking self-esteem. Mistreating oneself stems from self-rejection, which results from an image of perfection to which it is impossible to conform. It is the idea of perfection that we have that is the reason for self-rejection; it is because of it that we do not accept ourselves as we are, nor others as they are. Thus, we suffer our life and force others to suffer it too. Yet life is meant to be lived.
Therefore, if we want to experience a life of joy and fulfillment, we must find the courage to break those agreements that are based on fear, and claim our personal power. The chords of fear make us expend a lot of energy, while those arising from love help us to conserve this energy and even to have more of it. Let's discover these agreements based on love.
First agreement: let your word be impeccable
“Let not out of your mouth unwholesome words, but only good words for the edification of others, according to need and occasion, that they may bless those who hear you speak”Ephesians 4:29 AMP
Your word is your creative power. It is a gift that comes to you directly from God. Depending on how it is used, your speech can liberate or enslave you more than you realize. It is a seed that is planted and grows bearing fruit, so the quality fully depends on the quality of the seed planted. If it succeeds in capturing our attention, the word can penetrate our mind and change an entire belief, for better or for worse.
Flawless means " without sin ". A sin is something you commit against yourself. So to be impeccable, that is to say to be without sins, is to do nothing against oneself. When you're impeccable, you take responsibility for your actions, but you don't judge or criticize yourself for what you've done.
In religious terms, self-rejection is a mortal sin, since it leads to death. Being impeccable, on the other hand, leads to life. In other words, to seek perfection, to live according to standards imposed by others, which cause us to reject who we are, is to die. Life begins when you decide to accept yourself as you are, when you embrace your whole being, with your strengths and weaknesses.
And yet, how can we already have self-esteem when the voices around us constantly tell us that being yourself is bad? We must understand that people who love us, despite their love for us, can practice black magic against us, through the words they say about us, but are unaware of what they are doing. This is why we must forgive them: they do not know what they are doing.
So, since you can't always count on your loved ones to encourage you to be who you really are and to embrace yourself fully, you must learn to know yourself, to accept yourself. The intensity of your self-esteem and the feelings you have for yourself are directly proportional to the quality and integrity of your speech. When it is impeccable, you feel good, you are happy and at peace.
The first Toltec agreement which is to have an impeccable word is the agreement which tells us to mourn with this injunction of fear, which keeps us in the constant search for a perfection which pushes us to reject ourselves. Just as our loved ones have practiced black magic on us through their words, we can decide to practice white magic, first by embracing who we really are and encouraging others, through our words, to do so as well. .
However, if we understand this agreement well, we realize that there are two circles. Just as we create a virtuous circle by having an impeccable word with ourselves and others, so our loved ones who have negative words are only expressing what lies within them. They reject themselves and therefore can only encourage you to reject yourself, which forms a vicious circle of unhappiness. So it's essential that you understand that they're not doing it against you, they just don't know what they're doing. And so, it's up to you to change the circle by having an impeccable word. This fact then brings us to the discovery of the second Toltec agreement which is to take nothing personally.
Second deal: whatever happens, don't make it personal
“Don't take things personally. What others do or say reflects who they are, not who you are.Unknown author
You take what is said to you personally because you agree to it. Indeed, the words of others have an impact on you if and only if you let them touch you. Of the 4 Toltec Agreements, this one will help you understand and empathize with others. When you understand that what other people say to you is a reflection of what is going on inside them, you understand that the bad words they throw at you just show a deep internal malaise.
You are in no way responsible for what others do. Their actions depend on themselves. What they think and feel is their problem, not yours. So, when a person approaches you for example and says to you “you gained too much weight, you were better thin”. Don't get angry with the person or take their words personally. These words just show the person's way of thinking. For her, we are less beautiful when we are fat. Why get mad at a point of view? The person has the right to think so. Now it's up to you to tell him that his point of view is personal and not shared. It's his truth, not yours.
In the same vein, if the bad words that a person launches testify to a lack of internal love, in the same way, your word becomes impeccable when you are good with yourself. When you feel good, everything around you is good. And when everything around you is good, everything makes you happy. You love everything because you love yourself, you appreciate yourself as you are, you are satisfied with yourself, you are satisfied with your life.
One more reason not to take things personally is that by doing so, you are programming yourself to suffer for nothing. How would the fact that the other finds you less attractive because of an if or a that bother you? Taking things personally is giving others the power to work black magic on your lives. Because yes, you are the one who leaves the door open for others to put you down. And so, to stop taking things personally, you would already have to love yourself as you are, to embrace your wholeness.
Just as we don't want to let others perform black magic on us, we shouldn't do it on them as well. The best way is to have an impeccable word and not take things personally. However, one of the greatest obstacles is that we very often happen to think for others, to guess their intentions, to assume. The next Toltec agreement then is not to make assumptions. In a next post, we will talk about it in depth.