10:30 AM.

My boss calls me into her office to inform me that it wasn’t an idiot from another department who screwed up, but it was, in fact, me. I am the idiot who screwed up. I am suddenly in a state of shock!

Our practitioner has just come off a high point in his practice and now, out of nowhere, he is hit with this shocking news. I am not championing the experience of shock in our lives, but the rapid appearance of unexpected news is a real opportunity to move forward in emotional self-mastery. A life crisis is almost always accompanied by pain at some level. Life is filled with turning points that are like forks in the road of living. They represent signposts by which we can change the direction of our lives. Sometimes we make these decisions on our own and sometimes they are made for us through some unexpected news. In any case, they are unavoidable. In our example here, a crisis has broken out in this practitioner’s life and in the first instance, he did not have the practice of when-which-how to fall back on. In the second instance he does. Spiritual crises are often difficult and painful experiences, but they are invaluable lessons in psychological and spiritual development if we take advantage of them. Change is going to happen to all of us anyway, so why not prepare ahead of time. If that change does contain pain, we can lessen it considerably through practicing emotional self-mastery. More importantly, we will learn something new about ourselves and the world, thus giving us valuable knowledge to apply the next time a crisis emerges in our lives.