I intent to connect innovation and Creativity with spirituality. Creativity is about creating something new, creating something which does not exist as on date.
Anything new can be created only when the old has been done away with.
All our knowledge of the past and our thinking is based on our knowledge so all our thinking is of the past. So nothing new can be created by thinking.
Innovation and creativity HAPPENS. It cannot be forced or thought about.
It happens when all the Old has been thrown out of our mind. The moment our minds are clear of the old. The new has no option but to fill our minds. This happens happens in its own accord. Nothing needs to be done.
Your only job is to do away with the old, the rest happens on its own. You need not target to create something new. Whatever you target will be mind based, will be old. The new happens. The new is always at your doorstep, only you have to allow the new to enter. You have to just open the door.
Our only job is to understand our minds. Once understood, we are out of it, because when you understand, you will be very clearly be able to see it. Whenever the mind talks, you will be able to hear it clearly and relate. Once you watch your mind, you are not “it”.
To see the past you have to be in the present. Being in the present is doing away with the past. The present is the new. Present is creation. It is like standing on the hill top and looking at the valley.
I am trying start from the very basics, which will not be taught in any B-School. There will be many obstacles but according to me there is one major obstacle, which is your Ego.
To do anything new, one has to first do away with the ego. The ego is old, it is the product of conditioning. To do away with the ego, one has to first understand the ego. If you understand your ego well, you can be a very very successful entrepreneur, and not only and entrepreneur, you can become anything you wish to, the whole sky will be yours to fly. Let us try and understand the Ego.
When a child is born, his mind is blank. It is space. There is no difference between the mind of a child and outer space. It contains nothing. I don’t know if there is anything the new born child carries with himself from his previous life. So I am not commenting on that. Let us assume that the mind of a child is blank.
Slowly as the child grows up, the space gets filled up with information. The mind has a capacity to store huge amount of information, it is called memory. As the child grows up, he learns. He learns from the society. He starts learning from his parents who are also a part of the society. Besides the society, there a lot of information that the child keeps taking in by himself.
Role of Society in the Development of the Ego:
Society consists of yourself, your parents, friends, school mates, teachers, the shopkeeper and everyone you can think about.
The society has certain rules. These rules are not new, they are as old as our civilization.
The society had defined the good and the bad, right and the wrong.
Society has drawn lines, or rather I should say lanes. Just like lanes on the road and you have to follow these lanes.
The moment you deviate, you will be fined. Fined by the society.
So by the time you have grown up, you have learned the rules, and the moment you have learned, you are a part of the society.
The society with these rules wants to have you as a part of it. The society is afraid, that in case you are not a part of society, you might be a problem for them.
With these rules the society keeps you in control. The society keeps you in fear and you are afraid to change lanes.
The society believes in defining everything.
The Society knows that only by definition and making people adhere to these definition people can be kept in control.
The society has defined your profession, the society has defined you personal life.
And anything beyond this definition is felony. The society will not accept you if you flout the rules and you will be condemned. People will look at you with suspicious eyes and you will be left alone.
This is because all other people who have been following the rules become a team, they become the crowd and you are left alone if you dare to deviate. If you flout they make you an outcast. So everyone wants to be a part of the crowd, no one wants to be alone or to be declared an outcast.
That is why people are not ready to change lanes. It creates fear. The fear is only of “alone-ness” and nothing else. It is the fear that no one will come to you support. It requires enormous amount of courage to flout these rules.
But you have to flout them in order to be different, in order to be new. Because the society is old.
The society is mostly responsible for development of our ego because day in and day out we are following the rules set by the society. We know these rules by heart and never flout. These rules are every day and every hour being injected in our mind and it is bound to create the ego. This is why people in the same society have the similar egos. Having similar egos they all have all the same identities that have developed with time. So they are all friends, they belong to the same clan, they form a crowd.
Role of the Child Himself:
The child also fill up his minds with information.
When the same information is being input into the mind again and again, it becomes prominent. This is conditioning.
Child initially gets attached to his mother and when he is not able to see his mother he starts crying.
The child gets attached to his home and when away from home he starts crying.
You must have noticed that a child is not able to stay in a place other than his home for a long time. He wants to go home.
The child gets attached to his family members and when some guests come to visit you house, the child starts crying. He cries because there is a change. There are new members and this is not tolerated. It does not go with what happens usually. The world “usually” is very important. Whatever happens “usually” becomes prominent and leads to conditioning and formation of the Ego. And here the guests are “usually” not there.
When a child starts going to school, he starts crying because it is a new place, there are new people which is again a matter of concern for the child. He was so attached to his parents and his home and now he sees them no one. You must have noticed that children are so happy when they are on the way home from school. When they go home they get what “usually” happens.
This is how when the same inputs are repeated again and again, it makes a mark in the mind and we cannot imagine or think beyond the mark, because this mark becomes our memory and add to our knowledge.
The child knows nothing but his home and his parents. This knowledge tells the child that he belongs to the house and his parents. His knowledge gets confined only to his parents and his house, because there has been no other repeated input of information. Anything other than his home and parents is new to him. He is afraid of the new place, the school. He does not know what to do or talk. He does not have his savior, his mother, with him and he feels insecure. This newness becomes a matter of concern for the child and he starts crying. For the child the situation goes out of control.
The same thing happens to us when we go out to do something new. Something that no one has done before. For us to, the situation goes out of control. Our savior in this case is the outcome or the result. When something new is being done, the outcome is unknown and it becomes a matter of mental tension. This is why we avoid doing new things and thus fail to innovate.
When the child starts crying, know that he has developed an Identity.
We do not cry since we are grown-ups. We keep doing the old, the “known”.
His identity is – “himself in his house with his parents”. He defines himself in his mind as ONLY “the son of his parents”.
Our Identity is whatever we are till date. If we are a lawyer, we develop an identity as a lawyer. If we are an engineer, we develop our Identity as an engineer and we resist any change.
In the initial few days, wherever he is in school, he is physically present in school but since his mind knows only his home and his parents, and there has been no repeated inputs from his school environment, his mind imagines only his house.
The mind is capable of imagining only the house and his parents. This shows that our mind is capable of imagining only what it knows and nothing more. The imagination is confined to the memory and memory consists of only knowledge.
We cannot imagine anything that we have not learned. We have programmed ourselves. We cannot imagine anything that is not us.
This is our greatest hurdle.
Imagination that is not confined to the memory is divine.
But it is very rare.
He starts imagining the house, because his imagination is based on his knowledge and he knows only his house and parents. But in reality he is in school, he sees the teacher and hear her voice. The moment he knows that in reality he is in school, he starts crying. Crying because, the inputs that are coming from the school environment are being blocked by the memory of the child consisting of the his house and parents. This crying continues till inputs to his brain, from the school environment is repeated again and again and he develops another identity of his, that is, “the child in school with his teacher and other children” – he starts defining himself as a student. Now he has two identities – child at home, with parents, and child in school with other children. The other children become known faces and adds to his memory with time. The child after spending some time in school has two identities. First, the child in his house, with his parents and second, the child in school, as a student with other children and teachers.
I have used the example of the child because when he starts going to school, he has only one identity. It is easier to explain. When we grow up, depending on what kind of inputs are repeated we develop other identities. We develop hundreds of identities depending on the kind of inputs our mind was injected with.
“The ego is the sum of all these identities that we have developed in the course of our lives till date. The development of the ego is called conditioning”.
Conditioning is the Greatest Hurdle to Innovation
Knowledge is another major factor responsible for the development of the ego. All knowledge also comes from the society.
All knowledge from books, magazines, television and all other media is responsible.
For example, if you read about a big, stylish expensive car again and again, you will start imagining yourself driving that car again and again. The more you imagine, stronger this identity of you driving this car becomes. Then you are not happy with any car other than this car. You will despise the car you drive. Because driving your car and your imagination of you driving this big stylish car clash and you are more with your imagination. This becomes a cause of your unhappiness and you long for this car and eventually end up buying this car. You become happy. It was nothing, just the realization of one of your identities.
You forget that this was not the end of you unhappiness. You have, up to this date, developed hundreds of Identities and are continuously developing Identities.
By the time we have grown up, we have developed so many identities that it becomes very difficult to accept other identities or other situations that keep coming in the course of our lives. Different situations are bound to come, because it is the very law of nature. Our uneasiness increases day by day and you must have noticed, almost all of us are unhappy most of the time.
The Role of an Entrepreneur is to “Temporarily” put an end to our unhappiness.
Of all the identities, we are more attached to few of them depending on the number of time the information injection was repeated, depending on the number of times a similar situation was repeated. And these become the major identity, others are minor.
The major identities offer maximum resistance when these identities are in the verge of changing or getting modified.
Most of the time we are major identities. No matter what we do, in our imagination, we are our major Identities.
We believe that we are this major identity and would die but not be anything else. But the sad part is, this is all imagination. All imaginations are false and all our egos are false.
We may happily shift identities from one identity to another, but anything new his resisted.
If anything makes us happy understand that the current situation in which we are in, has matched with one of the identities that we have developed in the course of our life till date – The situation is termed as “Good” and anything that does not match with one of these identities is termed and “Bad” and makes us unhappy.
We start labeling things depending on whether it matches with one of our identities or not.
Identities keep forming from time to time as we keep adding knowledge. These identities are so high in number that they are all jumbled up and distinguishing them becomes almost impossible for us.
But these identities are not dead or have dissolved. They very much exist. But we do not know that they exist. All these identities are the basis of our desires.
Your desires are nothing but the gap between your real identity, your identity here and now and your imagined identity.
The more identities you have, greater the more the number of desires. It is very complex. None of the desires die they always remain dormant and are become alive whenever this particular identity is invoked.
Fulfillment of desires are nothing but the actualization of the imaginary identities. You see an advertisement of a beautiful car. You start imagining again and again that you are driving that car. An identity forms – the identity is “you as the owner of the car”. This identity adds to your collection of identities. You may be doing other things, and other identities are also forming, but the identity that you own that particular car also exists. It gets jumbled up with other identities, it gets lost inside your head, but it is still there. The moment you see that car, your memory is invoked, and that identity again comes into the forefront. When you drive your car, you are not happy because because, you have already developed another identity with that particular car. No identity dies. All of them are stored in your head and constitute your mind. Every identity is one desire that stays in your mind, and stats till the imaginary identity is realized. Identity is realized is same as the fulfillment of desire.
Throughout the day, depending on situations that come up externally, these identities are invoked. There is an identity associated with every external situation and it comes up. When you are doing nothing, your major identity is invoked. So, you never see reality completely. Your reality is marred with your imaginations, with your desires.
Since there are so many identities and all jumbled up that it is almost impossible to remember or know them separately. We do not know them but they keep functioning. We become unconscious of the presence of these identities and we get merged with our identities that become our identities. We become our egos. We become old because the ego consists of knowledge and knowledge is of the past. Any new situation, that makes us anything else other than those that were developed over the years, is resisted. When we are forced, we go mad, because our label is being taken out and thrown away. Then we will belong to nowhere, no part of any society, no group and will be thrown into the unknown sea maybe. And this will not be tolerated. We are ready to kill anyone who would force us to be anything else, because if we are not one of the identities that we have developed, we are no one. Anyone who creates a situation that would snatch away our labels, become our enemy. The person who tries to destroy our major ego, our dwelling place, become our greatest enemy. We are foolish enough to take all these identities as the truth.
We most of the time dwell in our egos. We dwell in the imaginary world which gives us the same identity as our major ego. Any new situation, we start imagining the situation which gives us the same identity as our major ego. So at any point of time, there are two or more worlds for us – One, the current situation, which is new and the other situation, which is imaginary, which gives us the identity of our major ego.
You may have noticed that whenever we do not like a situation, we start talking about something else, start imagining something else. We start imagining the situation or start talking about a situation that makes us who we think we are or that makes us our major ego.
Maybe there are more imaginary worlds. But there is only one real world, that is the current situation.
The moment this happens we are split. We are split between these worlds. We divide our time between these imaginary worlds and the real world. If your major identity is very strong, you spend maximum time imagining yourself in the situation which gives you your major identity. You are physically absent from the current real situation.
If you are completely mad you are all the time dwelling in your imaginations and you are completely unaware of the current real situation. Then you are physically present in your current situation but your speech is about some other imaginary situation. Since you are unaware of your current situation you start talking out loud and people start calling you mad. But if you have some amount of sanity left in you, you would keep quiet but your inner voice talks.
The inner voice then starts talking. With the imaginations in mind, whenever you are in the current situation, you argue with it, call it bad , you hate it and you want to run away from it. The inner voice starts comparing the current situation with the imaginary situations. The present situation becomes a burden because it is real and you cannot do away with it. You want to imagine more and more and your are being again and again pulled back to the current situation. Your argument continues till the current situation changes. While you are in your imaginary situation, you are feeling good, you do everything that you would be doing if you were actually there, but in your mind. You talk to the imaginary people who are present in your imagination, you scream, you walk, you dance. Everything mentally with the help of your inner voice. Externally you are quiet but, internally you are continuously talking. You are shifting from one imagination to the other and you internal dialogue changes and goes according to the imaginary situation.
You, most of the time dwell in your imaginary situation being your imaginary identity. Being the imaginary identity you play your role in your imaginary world and at the same time condemn, complaint about and criticize the current situation. You are, most of the time, your major identity, which is your ego and your talk from your imagination becomes the internal voice in your head. This is nothing but the voice of your ego, who is constantly talking. The dialogue mainly consists of arguing, commenting, condemning, guiding and Instructing. I have told you before that we divide our time among the current real situation and the various imaginations that come up.
Whenever we are in a situation that is labelled as “bad” we tend to argue and whenever we are in our imaginary worlds, we play our role there, whatever may be the identity in that particular imagination, we play that role in our minds. We do everything that we would do if the imaginary situation was true, but only in our minds. As we keep shifting from one identity to another, the situation changes and our dialogue changes. Imagine how split we are and I do not know how we are surviving with so many identities. It is certainly a disease.
This voice is baseless and away from truth because it is a product of imaginations.
Since we are one with this voice our actions become baseless and we keep making mistakes again and again. If you are more with your ego, your action reduces, you become lethargic, because you are most of the away from where you are. How can you act? You can only act when you are completely present where you are. If you not act as per the situation, this will surely go out of control and you will end up making a blunder.
Your life gets better and better with reduction in your imaginations. When the imaginations vanish, the inner talk stops. And one day when your ego is no longer there, you are enlightened. You arrive home. Wherever you are, it becomes your home.
As there are so many identities and all are entangled and jumbled up, we have lost track of them. But invariably the are present. They become a part of your mind.
Similarly we have no track of all the dialogues associated with every identity of ours.
But they are very much there. This voice becomes our guide.
Since we are unaware of it, we follow the voice religiously. What the voice says we say, being merged with it. When the voice argues we argue, when the voice criticizes we criticize and when the voice condemns we condemn, a situation. When the voice instructs us to act, we act. We become a slave to the voice and we are unaware of our slavery.
Awareness is the way to do away with this voice.