Lizards & Leaders: How Meditation Accelerates Change

Eric Klein

March 09, 2011

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"The goal is to cross your learning edge. [...] To do this you have to let go of the structures, beliefs, and habits that constituted your old sense of self–without losing awareness. It takes a resilient awareness to remain at your learning edge without being overtaken by the inner lizard. It takes a form of awareness that sustains itself even as the structures of your old self are let go. But, how can you let go of beliefs, attitudes, strategies, and self-images and still be aware? Even more to the point, what is left to be aware when all those mental and emotional supports are withdrawn? To discover this takes a special kind of practice. [...] The good news is that this specific kind of practice has been developed and refined for thousands of years by researchers and practitioners around the world. I'm referring to the practice of meditation. Meditation practice develops your inner capacity to remain aware when the conventional supports of position, title, beliefs, attitudes, and self-image are let go. How does meditation do this? By cultivating a specific type of attention known in traditional literature as witness consciousness or the inner observer (in contrast to the inner lizard)."

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