The self-confidence of the warrior is not the self-confidence of the average man. The average man seeks certainty in the eyes of the onlooker and calls that self-confidence. The warrior seeks impeccability in his own eyes and calls that humbleness. The average man is hooked to his fellow men, while the warrior is hooked only to infinity. ~ Don Juan, Tales of Power
Hooked only to infinity, warriors of freedom are aligned with their innate nature and allow others to be aligned with theirs. They don’t get uptight if someone isn’t acting the “correct” way, the correct way being the method that they hold within their field of perception of what works best for them or what they believe to be the way based on the deeply ingrained precepts of social conditioning. Warriors of freedom recognize that every person has a personal predilection to which they align in order to be truly authentic.
The path of the warrior of freedom is not, as some believe, a structured belief system with strict protocols of adherence that ultimately define us as warriors. We don’t have a checklist of traits to follow and obey nor do we have a lofty or illusory image to uphold by doing rituals and wearing costumes to define us. This path is an individual journey intended to allow those who walk it to break free of the patterns that attempt to keep us as prisoners to the mold of man. Part of the journey is the ability to walk freely through all of the various components that present themselves as worthy of exploration and sometimes we don’t know how absurd a particular component is until we take the opportunity to experience it directly. And then our choice is to recapitulate it and move on or become fixated until we come to realize that we have indeed compromised our freedom by becoming fixated on that point of reference. Either way, having the experience increases our awareness because we come to know the world through direct experience and not as an interpretation of what we believe that experience may be.
Nagualism consists of techniques and practices designed to alter our everyday perception, producing psychic and physical phenomena of extraordinary interest. It is a personal choice as to how far one would like to dance along the lines of awareness along the constant flow of energy. Warriors are committed to the search for new levels of awareness and will strive to experience anything and everything they can, with complete fearlessness. The goal is total freedom; the evolution of awareness to the point of enabling us to travel through the ocean of cosmic energy, perceiving all that is accessible to us. What we choose to experience as a result of engaging in various practices and techniques is to satisfy our own need to know and to evolve. As warriors our commitment to evolve is to ourselves, not to another.
Self-importance has a weak point: It depends on recognition to maintain itself. Knowing this, an apprentice renovates his relationships. He learns how to escape those who confirm his self, and frequents those who don’t care about anything human. He looks for criticism, not flattery. Every so often, he starts a new life, erases his history, changes his name, explores new personalities, and annuls the suffocating persistence of his ego. He puts himself in situations where his authentic self is forced to take control. He understands, once and for all, that all the energy of the universe is connected. What exists is a panorama of luminous emanations, inextricably bundled together, within which we can make interpretations as far as the power of our attention will allow. All our actions count, because they release avalanches in the infinite. For that reason, none is worth more than any other, none is more important than any other. That vision destroys the tendency we have to be indulgent with ourselves. Witnessing this universal bond, the warrior is prey to contradictory feelings. On the one hand, indescribable joy and a supreme and impersonal reverence toward all that exists. On the other, a sense of the inevitable, and a deep sadness that has nothing to do with self-pity; a sadness that comes from the breast of infinity, a blast of solitude which will never leave him again. That purified feeling gives the warrior the sobriety, the subtlety, and the silence that he needs to venture there, where all human reasoning fail. Under such conditions, self-importance can’t sustain itself. ~ Carlos Castaneda, Encounters with the Nagual