Many of us in the entrepreneurship world feel an intrinsic pull towards chasing two mysterious and seemingly contradictory rabbits.
For the past few years I've mulled over and battled with a mysterious dichotomy in my mind that I have come to call the King-Yogi Paradox.
It’s been a big motivation for my global travels, sometimes wandering for months at a time, seeking out an answer.
When I moved to Europe for a few months in 2013, I did a lot of seeking through introspection, meditation and engaging with an excellent coach to specifically work on this exact issue with me.
It’s also the reason I’ve done a lot of stupid stuff in business and spent thousands and thousands of dollars to learn from making very expensive mistakes.
So, what is the King-Yogi Paradox, and how is it relevant to you?
Many of us in the entrepreneurship world feel an intrinsic pull towards chasing two mysterious and seemingly contradictory rabbits, scurrying off into the bushes in different directions.
One of the rabbits compels us down a path of kingship. On that path we strive for material success, very tangible results like money and fame, and we seek relative power and influence that is represented in clear and distinct ways in our outer world.
The other rabbit compels us down a path of yoga. I’m not talking about back-bends and tree-poses. I’m talking about yoga, in the traditional sense of the word, as the physical, mental, and spiritual practices or disciplines which aim at transforming body and mind to reach an ultimate goal of liberation and transcendence.
That yogic pursuit often comes with a premature attitude of, “Screw all this material crap.” At least initially, in the stages of judgemental self-righteousness. Trust me. I've been there. Most of my yoga teachers and mentors have been there too.
And even if you think you’ve never done yoga or aspired to be a yogi, there has probably been a part of you that has said, “Screw all this material crap - I just want to transcend this and be at peace.”
Until of course that voice gets shut down with another voice that says, “I’m a badass entrepreneur and I want to rule the world, bitches!”
Thence the paradox.
And I've observed that most people who are stuck in this find themselves constantly jumping back and forth between the two. And we all know what happens when you chase 2 rabbits.
So my ongoing question has been:
How do we choose between the 2 for the sake of disciplined commitment?
Until I evolved that question to:
“How do we reconcile those 2 sides of our desire and hunger, and help both leverage and support each other?
Maybe the King and Yogi is actually a false dichotomy, and not a paradox at all.
When we embrace our potential as a reflection of the infinite universe that we are both a part of and one with, we can begin to fathom the notion that we can be kings in our empowered leadership of the world, and maintain a yogic spirit that transcends our attachment to the power and rewards of that kingship.