When our lives suck, we will tar and feather everyone around us or buy new distraction-enabling shit instead of maybe thinking we created our own circumstances.
In the words of some old roman, "Character is destiny." But character doesn’t just happen; it turns out you need to do things to get you some. Disappointingly, for all the self-help programs out there, there's not much about the foundations and fundamentals of character. Do any of us know what character even means? What it's made of? Is there a recipe for baking character?
When I was a young punk-ass in my twenties, I knew all the things.
But life was good enough to spank me hard and often to defog my know-it-all goggles. I took those spankings to heart and began trying to be less of a dick sometime around my 30th year. Since then, I've read some sphincter tightening works of profound philosophy, studied with heart-opening wise teachers, wrote a PhD dissertation about David Foster Wallace and Buddhist philosophy, and continued rolling down my trousers, learning to reply not with anger but with "thank you Life, may I have another." And so over time, I cultivated a deep love for the study and practice of character and thought long and hard about what it is, what it does, where to get it, and why.
Or as Augustine wrote:
"I was bound not by an iron imposed by anyone else but by the iron of my own choice. The enemy had a grip on my will and so made a chain for me to hold me prisoner. The consequence of a distorted will is passion. By servitude to passion, habit is formed, and habit to which there is no resistance becomes necessity. By these links... connected one to another... a harsh bondage held me under constraint."
CxD is about character from the perspective of someone who finds it to be pretty much the first––not the last––thing people alive in 2017 would be wise to pay attention to and to cultivate. You don't need more planners or three-ring binders or positive mantras. You only need to get your inner shit into a clear light––the rest will happen naturally, as it must.
It's your only life. What are you waiting for?