Psychologists know that human thinking is organised into logical levels and that at the very base of these levels lie our spiritual beliefs. The structure of our beliefs defines who we are, what we believe in, and what we hope to achieve. Any change at the deepest level of belief would permanently change beliefs and attitudes at a more superficial level. Robert Dilts (1990) in his book Changing Belief Systems with NLP identifies six areas of belief: environment, behaviour, capability, value, identity, and spiritual levels of belief. The spiritual level determines one's overall philosophy in life and is the base and most influential of all the beliefs. The philosophy of Budo Zen is a system of beliefs about the nature of the universe and lies at this spiritual level. Whatever philosophy you pick tends to determine your overall outlook on life and it also determines who you think you are. Every religion imparts spiritual beliefs but Budo Zen is not a religion per se. Your particular beliefs tend to support and comfort you. However, some beliefs support and promote trading skills, while others do not. For example, the view that we have no control and that our lives are predetermined are unsupportive of trading. Whereas believing the world and universe have harmony and that all actions are meaningful are supportive beliefs. People have complex beliefs at the environmental level and Chapters on perceptual biases illustrates this point. However, at the spiritual level one may have only a dozen or so beliefs which are semi-permanent and very difficult to alter.
A person who has experienced significant trauma through loss, war, or cruelty might perceive the world as an evil place and that the universe is simply a place where we are continually challenged. People can have the same experiences yet believe totally different things. For example, an alternative belief, predicated on the same traumatic experience, could be that the universe has perfect harmony with both good and evil coexisting. This belief makes life purposeful and it promotes a self-image that is useful and positive with regards to trading.
Budo Zen supports and promotes deep level beliefs that are useful in everyday life and particularly in trading the market.
There are four beliefs at the core of Budo Zen that motivates the practitioner. Dr McCall refers to this as the four pillars of warrior motivation. First, is mortality awareness - that we must utilise each moment of our lives to the fullest. Mortality awareness is not a negative belief such as "when you die, that's it - you're dead". Mortality awareness empowers one to take any necessary risk at any costs to achieve the mission and fulfil one's destiny. The second is of life purpose - to recognise that trading is an important part of fulfilling one's true life purpose. The third is soul passion - where the practitioner experiences feelings of joy, exhilaration, fulfilment, satisfaction, and inner completeness. It represents love for an activity and it is inseparable from life purpose. The final is that of higher goals and objectives - the practitioner cultivates an inner drive to be the best that he or she can be. It transcends goal setting.
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