Tales of Power (The Teachings of Don Juan #4)

By Carlos Castaneda; Published In 1974
Genres: Fiction, Philosophy, Spirituality
A warrior, or any man for that matter, cannot possibly wish he were somewhere else; a warrior because he lives by challenge, an ordinary man because he doesn't know where his death is going to find him.

A warrior takes his lot, whatever it may be, and accepts it in ultimate humbleness. He accepts in humbleness what he is, not as a grounds for regret but as a living challenge.

Don’t try to hurry,” he said. “You’ll know in due time and then you will be on your own, by yourself.” “Do you mean that I won’t see you any more, don Juan?” “Not ever again,” he said. “Genaro and I will be then what we always have been, dust on the road.” I had a jolt in the pit of my stomach. “What are you saying, don Juan?” “I’m saying that we all are unfathomable beings, luminous and boundless. You, Genaro and I are stuck together by a purpose that is not our decision.” “What purpose are you talking about?” “Learning the warrior’s way. You can’t get out of it, but neither can we. As long as our achievement is pending you will find me or Genaro, but once it is accomplished, you will fly freely and no one knows where the force of your life will take you.” “What is don Genaro doing in this?” “That subject is not in your realm yet,” he said. “Today I have to pound the nail that Genaro put in, the fact that we are luminous beings. We are perceivers. We are an awareness; we are not objects; we have no solidity. We are boundless. The world of objects and solidity is a way of making our passage on earth convenient. It is only a description that was created to help us. We, or rather our reason, forget that the description is only a description and thus we entrap the totality of ourselves in a vicious circle from which we rarely emerge in our lifetime.

If one is to succeed in anything, the success must come gently, with a great deal of effort but with no stress or obsession.

Only as a warrior can one withstand the path of knowledge . . ..

The diagram in the ashes had two epicenters; one he called “reason,” the other, “will.” “Reason” was interconnected directly with a point he called “talking.” Through “talking,” “reason” was indirectly connected to three other points, “feeling,” “dreaming,” and “seeing.” The other epicenter, “will,” was directly connected to “feeling,” “dreaming,” and “seeing”; but only indirectly to “reason” and “talking.” I remarked that the diagram was different from the one I had recorded years before. “The outer form is of no importance,” he said. “These points represent a human being and can be drawn in any way you want.” “Do they represent the body of a human being?” I asked. “Don’t call it the body” he said. “These are eight points on the fibers of a luminous being. A sorcerer says, as you can see in the diagram, that a human being is, first of all, will, because will is directly connected to three points, feeling, dreaming, and seeing; then next, a human being is reason. This is properly a center that is smaller than will; it is connected only with talking.” “What are the other two points, don Juan?” He looked at me and smiled.

There are lots of things a warrior can do at a certain time which he couldn’t do years before. Those things themselves did not change; what changed was his idea of himself.

You have little time left, and none of it for crap. A fine state. I would say that the best of us always comes out when we are against the wall, when we feel the sword dangling overhead. Personally, I wouldn't have it any other way.