It was eight years ago this weekend (Grand Final weekend in Melbs) that I did the Landmark Forum. It was the turning point of my life, and I date events in my life as either before or after.
Up until then, my experience of life was often a miserable one. Much of the time I felt anger, boredom or despair, and I had little or no control over these gusts of emotion. I was scared of other people and life in general, and spent loads of energy trying to cover this up. I was at the mercy of the world around me, a world which occurred as hostile.
Everything changed with the Landmark Forum. Since then, I’ve lived as much of my life in possibility and joy as I previously spent in suffering.
Following are some of the insights and propositions of the Landmark Forum, many of which are also part of Buddhism. I feel a thrill to say them as mere words. To experience them as reality has been the greatest gift.
- The world is empty and meaningless
- Human being is the space or clearing in which the world is arising
- Human being creates the world through language (through thought)
- Human being is the meaning-making machine
- What you call “you” or “your wife” or “your husband” are simply fixed ways of being or identities made of “strong suits” and “rackets”
- Strong suits are fixed ways of being you took on as a small child and an adolescent in a moment of perceived failure in order to ensure you never experienced that moment again
- Rackets are persistent complaints you entertain – about others, about the world, about yourself – because you derive a covert payoff from keeping them going; payoffs include being right, being justified, dominating/avoiding domination, looking good/avoiding looking bad, and the big one, avoiding responsibility
- Who you really are is everything and nothing.