γνῶθι σεαυτόν

Dear Reader,

                        It has been a mirror to you as it has been a mirror to me. The following virtues are purely from the heart of and from my connection with the story. The philosophical, artistical, emotional, mental, spiritual and energetic development of this book has obliged me to look within myself and conserve the light in the most terrible darkness. Let these letters give you strength, give you hope, give you passion, inspiration and the infinite force you have within yourself to make your own path, to see with your own mirror. These letters come from my soul; they dwell here to be read whenever you need them, now you hold the Truth with me. This is part of my gratitude to you to have entered my being with my story, you have tasted the process of my heart, the experience of my soul, loving infitively, purely, truly and being one with the other, regardless how dark the world is.

 

The following virtues are written for the purpose for you to understand your own way of that virtue, for the goodness of the world, for the harmony of well-being. Although some virtues are naturaly inclined to be perceived as if they depend on the other, they are described with the aim for you to use them with yourself first. You are free to use the concepts of the virtues as you wish; however, I humbly give you my words to go beyond yourself, to give, love above all, as the light which shines and reflects through our mirrors, it radiates and grows; I hope they let you flourish your soul for the future, to everyone, regardless the differences this time of our civilization struggles with as human beings. Part of my life lives in this story, and it forever will. As I continue this journey of living, I will continue to do my best to provide the most efficient way for us to translucently understand spirituality in a way which progresses naturally in its divine togetherness. Beautifully enough, I too am in this journey of searching, for it is a divine and blissful adventure in everyway indeed.

I soulfully invite you to contact me in regards of these virtues, only if you wish to do so, even if it is either to express your opinion or either if it is  to suggest ideas to progress and develop spirituality in a simpler way which makes it more accessible. Welcome:

 

Facundo Raganato
& The Author

Awareness

The reality we believe, it’s the reality our mind perceives, and consequentially we manifest from it; sometimes we can create a bubble in our conscious perception and see only what we want to see. To be aware it’s to know how to break free from that bubble and be more open to see, feel, and think things beyond our perception. Being conscious of what we perceive is where the definition of Awareness dwells; however, it is also the virtue of seeing things beyond oneself, beyond the perspective we see at the present, without judgment, assumptions, speculations or prejudice; being receptive of other energies which enhance our mind's perspective. 

Stability

Balance is only reached when we find a point of stability between opposites. The strongest point of stability is at the very center of our true inner self. The search for our true inner self is an endless spiritual journey of exploration; however, as we travel into ourselves deeper, we unveil and discover who we really are; our values, our principles, our integrity; to be connected to our true inner self brings an unlimited potential and expansion of the mind, heart and soul, consciouslly and subconsciouslly, beyond words. Ask youself. Question everything, even your own answers, for they will guide you to find the very essence of who you are. To harmonize and balance opposite forces with your true inner self is the base of the most powerful virtue of stability.

Resilience

Resilience is the ability for something to spring back into its natural state. External and even internal energies are constantly influencing us to follow a path on the way we look, the way we feel, the way we think, the way we are, etc. They can guide us into confusion, depression, disappointment, and many more wheels of vices; it is crucial to remind ourselves of our roots; home; the santuary of ourselves; the true inner self, regardless of how the energies influence us. Each individual has its own way to finding oneself when lost. Meditation is a key to practice Resilience.

Resistance

Resistance is stronger than we could ever imagine. It takes will and discipline to master this virtue. Our mind is far more powerful beyond what we believe or imagine it to be. When external energies, or even internal energies of our own creation, tempt us to give in, give up, lose ourselves, or even turn against ourselves, it is when resistance comes to give us strength, support; the will for us to break the boundaries of our own limitations and exceed beyond our expectations.

Confidence

If the steps on our paths are confident, then our decisions are confident regarding where and how we are taking ourselves. We are in control of our own path. Confidence is the staff one should carry with oneself, it is the purpose of why we are walking the way we are walking. In times of confusion, remember that the staff always stands: Who are you? Why are you here? What are you here to do? These are questions that do not require an absolute unchangeable answer, these are questions that will make one frame oneself in a time being and help one to be more confident in what one decides to do. I am here Now. Each one has his/her own way of giving power to confidence, some with Substance, Knowledge, or Wisdom, etc; it is crucial for oneself to be aware of what gives power to one's confidence, for it is the structure of how confience is sustained.

Detachment

One tends to create emotional bond to things or to other people, which (in my opinion) is beautiful; the natural flow of emotions in between them inspires one to feel alive as the other cares as much as oneself. However, attachment can lead to be dependent on an essence one has not discovered in oneself yet. It is important be ready and learn to detach from one's attachments. One is in control of one's mind to be aware of one's attachments and dependency; detachment creates an objective perspective to understand our subjective perspective deeper. Its effect can let one see things clearly about oneself and the attached. Once the objective perspective is understood, a deeper subjective experience might inspire to find a balance between the objective and the subjective, defining an individual sense and the understanding of detachment. Detachment's key concept is understanding that nothing owns you.

Reliability

It takes certain strength to deal with things oneself, yet it takes another kind of strength, a deeper connectivity, to accept that one needs a hand, support, a hug, words of encouragements, etc. Sometimes one surrenders; it is important to know that one can rely on others, yet, it is far more important for others to know and feel that they can rely on you. Reliability builds one's strength, trust, connection, and  love. Friendship is the best example of reliability. However, this reliabilty is linked to one's trust with oneself; ask youself: Can you rely on yourself?

Trust

Trust is a rope that binds people together. This rope is made up of Truth. As we share a connection with those around us, the more truthful we are to others as well as with ourselves, the more pure and powerful the connection would be; hence, the energy between the connections will flow more efficiently. Consequentially, the more we share truthfully with the other, the more we will see ourselves truthfully; everyone and everything that exists is simply a reflection of the perception and manifestation of our mind. Trust.

Commitment

Commitment has the well-known iconic representation in a ring; a circle that cannot be broken; commitment in its purpose. One may fear commitment with the fear of breaking the circle, which would be wise to say that one must be ready to start a circle to fully cycle it to the end and serve its purpose. Commitment makes one responsible, caring, trustful, mature, etc. It does not take away one's freedom necessarily; one is free to make all the choices one wishes, yet it gives responsability, purpose, and it inspires growth. One practices commitment to sustain values and principles at its core, unable to do so will degrade the values and principles.

Be True to your commitments, be true to yourself.

Silence

Silence is a very important virtue, perhaps it is one that includes many virtues within. When we meditate, silence takes over our minds, the stillness and peacefulness with oneself is enabling us to understand ourselves more deeply in who we are in that moment. Listening is a key in the virtue of silence. When one shares silence with another, the energy of our thoughts and feelings are shared naturally, connected, reflected and experienced. Harmony and balance of the moments are the blissful answers to the virtue of silence. 

Discipline

Discipline is hard like the lashes of a whip; this is the virtue of constantly reminding yourself to keep yourself to be focused on what you set your mind to do. Use this virtue as whip your mind; every time your thoughts or feelings try to wander off or be entertained loosely, lash yourself back to your center; you will keep reminding yourself to train your mind to keep yourself concentrated and focused. You are the one who controls your mind; do not let your mind control you.

Creativity

One spark of inspiration can lead you to create millions of possibilities with Creativity, which makes you to think outside the box. Question everything, try to see things in a new way; your own original way, let your imagination take you far, VeRy FaR; daydream, dwell on ‘what if’s, expand your knowledge by following what you are curious about, but most important of all: Play; Play with your mind with NO limits, sit on the couch with your head down, walk backwards, Play! Follow what you Feel and play!

Strategy

Strategy is a master virtue of the mental reign. Chess is a great way to practice strategic thinking. Before one starts a strategy, confident and secure choices are planned and analyzed to deeply dwell into the goal specifically; its development focus and connection is usually connected to acomplish a goal. The more one knows about one's obstacles, the more power one has to conquer them. Take that as a key: learn all the aspects of the situation, take in consideration all posible possibilities and what if's, analyze the approach, and from there, answers of the strategic plan will unfold before you. Envision it and think it through!

Openness

Being closed, being just the audience of one's life might let oneself be seen in a more objective manner. Being open, being the protagonist of one's life might let one see oneself in a more subjective manner. There will always be things in the unknown which open new opportunities. Be open to try new things, to be led by life’s signs, to listen to one's intuition; be open to listen to what others have to say and connect, be open to what others do, explore, be open to take risks and chances, be open to receive the world without you, within you. Be open.

 Honesty

Honesty is the magic your should always keep with yourself. Lies build walls between people like a maze; the more lies you tell others, the greater the maze for people to understand the real you. Eventually the maze has an exit, but the confusion and suffering others might experience to understand is the vice of lies we use to protect ourselves from facing the Truth. Don't be afraid, be honest and truthful, your conscience will be clear and pure, trust the magic of honesty, it is truly Divine and brings spiritual wonders. 

Strength

Strength is not measured by muscle nor physical power. This spiritual strength can measured by what makes a soul strong. One of the most powerful strengths can be found at the core of our inner self; to be aware of the principles and virtues one believes in, which inspires one to be strong at any circumstance. Perharps a more powerful strength can be found at the need of a loved one, it is at the weakness of one which calls the other to be strong. This virtue is much needed at a time of crisis; to be aware of this virtue is to feel the transformative power as one summons it. One can feel strength when visioning a goal, when feeling supported, when feeling confident, etc.

Patience

Patience

The virtue of patience is very much related to Time itself. Regardless the biological time of beings, time, as we experience to think of it, is a spectrum of the perception of the Mind. Patience is the virtue one adquires when one's mind masters the perception of time; at the passing of one minute by the hand of the clock, a mind can perceive the Time passing faster to slower, depending on what and how the mind acts. To own the virtue of Patience is to own one's Mind control over time, to be aware of one's thoughts and feelings, especially when influenced by external forces. Be mindful of the thoughts and feelings that spark your acceleration, especially at a situation of stress, trouble, discomfort; to be patient is to be in control of your own internal time yet also intuitive enough to know and/or feel the external time harmoniously.

Generosity

Generosity

The virtue of Generosity inspires many virtues within.

It is a blessing to practice this virtue, for it is the action of giving without expecting anything in return; it is giving for the sake of giving; it is flourishing someone's heart and soul by opening this virtue in yours. To practice this virtue is to be blessed and connected to the source of all; to be noble and enlightened in what it means to be human. This virtue is kindness and goodness wrapped in a single defintion; to experience the amazing power of this virtue place yourself in the shoes of a person who received Love without any reason at all, and apart for being grateful, keep this virtue alive by doing the same for another. Fire will spread and multiply, spreading happiness, joy and gratefulness.

Diligence

Diligence

Diligence is the virtue of action; it calls to be efficient and productive; the drive to develop. It requires a disciplined mind to make choices which lead to work hard with just a drop of effort. A determined mind will not wander around before making a decision to do what must be done, it will simply do it. It helps to envision the outcome or the result from the initial action in order to keep this virtue in a constant roll. Practice makes perfect. Discouraged thoughts, disappointing emotions or even external influences can affect this virtue, but remember that it is one who is in control of the mind, not the other way around. 

Knowledge

Knowledge is a very important virtue in the path of development. It is the introspection of facts, skills and/or information usually through logical or reasonable perception of understanding and/or learning, Different from Wisdom, Knowledge takes on the theorical and/or practical approach in being aware of a subject, per se, by grasping a composed idea in a logical and/or reasonable manner. It is the power of the conscience of the mind in regards to awareness; it produces familiarity, insight, clarity, growth, efficiency, power; it inspires wisdom, understanding, communication, unity, etc. This virtue is the master key to other virtues.   

Faith

Faith is the virtue which will always be there, regardless how dark any situation is. It can be mistakenly be used in reference to religion, but it doesn't have to be necessarily. Faith is the virtue of Belief, and although many place it upon God, the Universe or any force defined as "superior to Humans," it is important to have Faith in oneself. To believe in oneself is a very powerful connection with one's spirituality; it is a cycle of support, which will be related to one's principles, values and the light of one's inner self. To have faith in another or in a future event is more related to Trust and Hope. Faith is a belief which cannot be disappointed, for it is not something one expects, but instead, it is the driving force which inspires one to Believe.

Will

Will is the virtue of thrive, it may be fueled by desire, by resposibility, by love, by honor, etc; it may be kept fueled by the goal the will is aiming to accomplish, or by the inception its will is fueling from. This virtue carries the fire of the present to the future; it projects to the future and it is valued when the point of its endurance is reached. Internal and external energies are always influencing us negatively and positively with this virtue, deminishing our will or inspiring it. Remembering the purpose of the will or its goal may be the best way to practice this virtue. 

Temperance

Temperance is the virtue  of balance and harmony; it is the virtue of understanding and feeling at the same time, internally and externally. This virtue carries Humility, Modesty, Prudence, Patience, Self-awareness, Self-control. It is crucial to be attentive of the influences which derail us out of balance when this virtue is needed, To be aware of this virtue consciously at the judgement of our level of consciousness is to practice the depth of Temperance. 

Joy

The light of this virtue inspires greatly and purely. If pleasure may be defined as happiness of the external world being processed to one's inner self, then Joy is happiness being processed from one's inner self to the external world. The experience of smiling, dancing, laughing, enjoying is one of the most uplifting virtues there are; it inspires and expands the light in others and ourselves as well, in many way, in many levels. The most deepening source of this virtue may be found at the present moment; it is at the divine realization that one is alive. To be grateful and conscious of one's state of being at realization can be the spark of Joy everyone carries inside.

Purity

The virtue of being pure is linked to innocence. Being innocent could be defined as letting go, as to being led by the influences that drives us without thoughts, fears, assumptions; this is uncertainty is dangerous for the common mind, for the innocent can fall in any hole where there is a sign of trouble. The virtue of purity is to maintain the innocence of our inner child, without the ego, without strategic thoughts, without fear. This purity is a bliss at that state, it connects one to our inner child and it makes anything possible. Purity is an empty vase; it is the virtue where all the others virtue can manifest through. 

Courage

The virtue of courage is an important one, for it brings confidence, strength, will, honor and many others. One many find this virtue at a situation where a hero is required, where one is tested to step up and take charge, defend the honor of what is at risk. Courage is the virtue of being ready to face the challenges, either to defend the honor of something, someone, or to fight for it. It is crucial for one to understand that every moment is eternal, it is unique and it is never going to repeat itself. When the moment where courage is tested arrives, it is the moment to reflect and use this virtue, regardless how the situation resolves, to use the virtue of courage is to have what it takes to be a hero.

Wisdom

Wisdom is the insight of the virtues. While Knowledge takes on the logical and fact-based thinking, Wisdom goes through the metaphorical path to reach the unreachable. To be wise is to listen beyond what is heard. To be wise is to understand, feel and manifest the virtues for the well-being of the world. To be wise is to expand and shrink the the opposite of forces while knowing there is no line which separates and one's power is linked to the universe itself. Wisdom is adquired by experience. If knowledge were Science, Wisdom is Art. The virtue of wisdom is obtained when the other virtues are practiced and perfectionized efficiently, it is linked with intelligence; it is the deep knowledge one must seek within oneself.

Integrity

The virtue of integrity holds the sacredness of the virtues, it is the  quality of preserving true to one's principles and moral uprightness. Integrity is recognized through other virtues as well, for example: honesty, prudence, solidarity, generosity, etc. Integrity holds virtues above personal circumstances; one is honest because one believe in the virtue of honesty, not because being honest will benefit oneself. Integrity is requires determination and commitment in its truthfulness to the sacredness of the virtue, it is in the process of consistency which holds the essence of integrity true to its word.

Honor

Honor holds a high respect of grace, gratefulness, and privilege to what it is honored. It is the virtue of accepting the tribute it holds, and expressing the virtue with humility and pride. It is important to be clear about what one is honoring, for it is in the decision of what one holds important to honor which reflects the quality of one's virtues. For example, it may be said to be important to honor one's father and mother, for it is in one's life decisions which reflects to one's mother and father that their sons or daughter hold the honor of their parents' life; to place it more simply: If you were a parent, wouldn't you feel happy to know it was an honor for having a child like the one who made quality life decisions? 

Respect

The virtue of respect is a quality  of honoring the other's presence in all manners. It is said that respect is something you earn, yet I think respect is something that you give. It is the virtue of understanding someone's space, sometimes perhaps in honor or in admiration. Who is who to draw the line of judgement regarding who is or should be respected and who isn't or should not be respected? Sometimes opinions are supported by strong arguments and evidence supported by fact, yet we all make mistakes, it is in that decision to go above personal circumstances and have a human respect for the other which keeps on giving light when the darkness.

Grace

The virtue of grace may be identified as the gratuitous gift we received in this life. The real virtue is recognizing that gift, consciously knowing and/or feeling this virtue. One may naturally link this virtue in terms of Art or in the Aesthetics, per se, in terms of Beauty; for example, the grace of a dance, or acting with grace, identified by how the individual delivers a movement with emotion or elegance. This virtue has mystic layers which go beyond a simple definition, for it contains a spiritual connection from the subjective perception, and may also be linked to meaning itself. A virtue of divine origin.

Gratitude

The virtue of gratitude can sometimes be taken for granted, for as simple as the words "Thank You" may seem meaningless for one who express them or receives them, but it may mean the whole wide world for the other. This virtue strengthens appreciation and kindness, it requires humility, empathy & generosity. To be grateful is where this virtue is recognized, and it is most needed when something "unfortunate" happens, for it may help to shine on the optimistic side of a situation. Gratitude expands one's light of consciousness to the things one's grateful for, it also attracts more of what you are grateful for.

Sympathy

The virtue of sympathy includes the action of caring, it involves the connection of being in affinity with another person's feelings; it may be defined as a compassionate feeling of support. In a metaphorical example, perhaps Sympathy can be defined as reaching to a drowning individual from a boat; while Empathy can be sharing the feeling as if the drowning man were oneself. Sympathy is understanding the feeling of another with compassion, with the drive to take the other to a well-being state. There is generosity, kindness, integrity and many other virtues in this virtue.

 More Virtues Coming Soon

Art, Music & Literature:
Facundo Raganato

Artistic Photographs of The Author:
Scott Redinger-Libolt
www.redphoto.com

Book Cover Design:
Patricia Gil &
Facundo Raganato

Book Cover Photo:
Laura Mintz

© 2014 by Facundo Raganato. 

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