#2 | Awakening


Awakening to what?

Awakening to the sacred knowing that dwells within us all. Awakening to the power, path, and purpose that only the spirit within you can provide and the mysteries that only awakening can solve.

As the legendary American mythologist Joseph Campbell understood,

“We are the truth we seek to know.”

But awakening to this realization—that inward lies our voice, salvation, power, and destiny—is increasingly difficult in our materialistic modern world which is wired for 24/7 connectivity to external voices, all vying for our time, attention, ego, and control.

The times we are living in have pulled our vision to the external, to what others are doing—or not doing. When solutions and salvation rest beyond our reach we become spectators, sidelined from the game. When someone “over there” needs to change in order for our world to improve, we’ve ceded control and lost our inner power to make a difference.

For centuries empires have gone to great lengths to convince us that power, sacredness, and control live in a distant capital or kingdom upon a throne reserved for others. But these narratives are all about controlling us, sowing the seeds of followership, and distracting us from the kingdom within.

Each of us is a king, a queen.

Each of us is divine royalty.

Each of us holds within us a piece of the sacred power of the Universe.

The Sioux tribes of the northern plains have long understood that everything that exists is related and connected. All that we see is comprised of the same stardust, from the same creation source.

It thus stands to reason that if anything is sacred, everything is sacred.

If everything is sacred, we are sacred. You are sacred.

Organizations of the future should honor the sacredness of each individual. As Rudyard Kipling wrote, “The strength of the pack is the wolf.” Only when each individual on a team or within a community is thriving can the tribe be truly whole and strong.

Across the entirety of 2021 I intend to share a series of essays dedicated to releasing the sacred that dwells within us all. These writings will explore new (yet ancient) narratives about personal power, self-actualization, and shared leadership. We need to reset the templates for viewing ourselves and the organizations we belong to if we are to create meaningful change in both our personal paths and our shared global human course.

These transcendental paradigms will hopefully help bring us back to what each one of us can most influence, elevate, celebrate, and control—ourselves.

The twenty-first century is about awakening at the individual level and awakening we are. But awakening is an arduous journey, and it requires two commitments from all who pursue it:

First, I will create change by looking inward, not outward. I shall become what I seek in the world.

Second, I will live in a loving manner that empowers others to also look within and embrace the essence of who they authentically are.

If all of this seems too whimsical or philosophical, don’t fret. We’re going to keep it real. We’re going to keep it grounded. You can build a family, community, school, company, country, or planet around this stuff! Remember, at my core I’m just a lumber company guy from Maine. I have seen firsthand how dispersed power and respect for all voices can reinvent capitalism and produce collective good. The formula is simple: The whole excels by honoring the well-being of its individual parts.

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Thank you for considering my thoughts. In return I honor yours. Every voice matters. Between our differences lies our future.


This is the second in a series of short essays to be posted by Kevin to www.thebusinessofsharedleadership.com in 2021. Kevin is dedicating these writings in honor of Black Elk, the Oglala Sioux holy man who was escorted as a child on a sacred vision quest by the 48 horses of the four directions to visit the six Grandfathers. My horses, prancing they are coming. They will dance; may you behold them. On that journey Black Elk understood the sacred power that dwelled within him and lives within us all. He also recognized that this power could be used for good or bad. Intentional we must be about the path we walk. To invite others to join The Business of Shared Leadership and receive these posts, just pass this link along. The more who join, the deeper the energy field of engagement will become! Thank you!