I discovered The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz early in my quest for spiritual answers and immediately identified with the message.
It helped that it was short, well written, and easy to understand and I was able to apply it to my everyday life. I read it again last year and even more of it resonated than the first time eight years ago.
If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it.
In summary the Four Agreements suggested by Ruiz are:
Be impeccable with your word
Don’t take anything personally
Don’t make assumptions
Always do your best
This blog is going to focus on the first agreement and some of the background to it from the book.
Most people are living a life that is the result of their conditioning, be it their upbringing, their education, the constant messages from their government or commercial enterprises. Ruiz likens this to society’s dream. It’s a dream of negativity and limits, fed by the media: radio, TV, social media, billboards and magazines. The dream is based on fear.
You may have read before that the only real drivers in this world are fear and love. Fear is the easiest route by which to steer anyone. Sound like the Matrix or some new age idea? So what does that mean, actually?
Well most people grow up to understand that a “good” life means a house and with it a mortgage, a good job working for a company, paying taxes, a wife and two kids, nice car in the garage. And only when all those boxes are ticked will they find happiness. In fact, if they add a microwave/ fridge/ large TV/ computer/ 2nd car/ designer clothes/ a certain cologne/ the latest phone etc, they will be even happier.
Of course many people already have these things, but does it really make them happy? And what if you prefer to marry someone of the same sex, or you don’t want to own a house?
Your parents most likely have unknowingly, and with the best intentions, bought into the dream, as have your friends and siblings. And of course, it’s in the governments interests and those of the big corporations to have you in debt and fearful, for then you are easier to control.
If you realise that all these things do is create a prison: working in a job you hate, paying a mortgage on a house that does not make you happy, living in a relationship that seemed right at the time because of the hidden pressure to conform, to marry, to have children, what can you do about it?
Are you going to stay inside this prison of your own making until you grow old, retire and die without ever really living? Or do you want to escape and live your own life and follow your own dreams?
The Four Agreements are a template that will help you build a new dream, a new foundation, if you like, that will enable you to break free and build your own future. Thinkmiracle.org is my take on how to do this, and how I did it. Don Miguel Ruiz has written it more clearly than I have.
So, starting with the first agreement:
Be impeccable with your word.
To me this means telling your truth, being authentic to who you really are—strong enough to express yourself, vulnerable enough to be true to your heart. Don’t join in with gossip, remove yourself from the propaganda machine of the media, which tells you you will be happy when you do this, or buy that. Stop listening to the fear-based news, and instead, follow your heart, your passions. Go back to the child in you that was born, loving, playful, and genuine.
Being impeccable with your word also means watching the words you use about yourself, both out loud and the thoughts in your head. It takes practice, but try to correct yourself when you engage in negative self talk. Be positive, but be truthful. In the end your thoughts and your words become your reality, they become the house you live in.
Listen to our podcast discussion on the Four Agreements.