Saturday, September 6, 2014

Return Of The Dragon

I alluded a couple of posts back about a business blow up that was taking a lot of time.


Without going into a lot of detail, it involved a partnership I put together initially to promote business networking for professionals.  We thought it would make our own networking much more productive.  However it grew far more than we ever thought it would have but it was far from making any money.   But one of our partners had some kind of delusions of grandeur and moved us to attempt to grow the business.  This cost me a lot of time and money.

As I went through my personal transition, I decided I wanted out of managing and investing into this.  This provoked a response that was far beyond anything I would have thought.  The partner secretly working with our major sponsor, an accounting firm, tried to do a hostile takeover.  It was actually much messier than even that sounds.  In the end the remaining partner and I, with a helluva a lot of work and stress, have maintained the original business and though their are still skirmishes being fought, I think we are stabilized and ready to continue on.


On the spiritual path, things are not always what they seem.  The Ego, which I had thought I'd dealt with and was ready to put behind me, is a wily foe and not willing to give up easy.  In Greek mythology, heroes constantly fought dragons and after defeating them would plant the teeth of the dead dragon.  These teeth would sprout warriors that the hero then had to fight and defeat as well.  (Note: If you know the teeth are going to sprout warriors, why do you plant them?  Wouldn't the first hero in his sagas or ballads say something like "don't you go planting those dragon teeth fool!").

Well I view this whole event as being like the dragon teeth.  I may have thought I'd overcome the dragon, Ego, but I had not accounted for just how much it wants to keep me attached to this illusion.  This whole thing really involves so little in the way of money (in fact it's almost laughable the amount effort and risk to reputation the other side has put into trying to wipe us out considering how little money is involved) and regardless of what way it went would have virtually no effect on my personal future.  So clearly it is more about the lessons to be learned.  In my case it is not letting myself be dragged into attachment again and understanding that there is a duty (dharma) role to be played.


One of the things that came to the fore early on in the crisis was my being told that if I retired and just let the thing go, the organization would not be able to continue because I was the source of much of its special training and mentoring.  My third partner had been left holding the bag, in part because of my action but also because of the attacks by the other side.  I knew I needed to help him but I did not want to 'go back into business' again.  My long-term path is in another role. 

I remembered the story of Cincinnatus, a person who became a civic legend in the old Roman Republic, for having lost power, being brought back with absolute dictatorial authority to save the Republic from a foe, and his giving that power up the minute the foe had been defeated.  That's who I will need to be. I will do what I need to to get the organization so it is going forward.  Then I will go back to MY real path.


Wife's active support has been a wonderful thing.  For most of my time in New Mexico with the business, she has pretty much not involved herself emotionally.  She might think I was doing something stupid or giving trust where it would not be returned but felt the business was my affair and not hers. 

This has been something entirely different.  From the first she felt that something very wrong had been done and that it was totally my duty to address it.  She understood that this was going to take away from our planned retirement readjusting of schedule and gave me positive support for it.  She has been actively involved with thinking things through.  She's been a tigress, a side I've not seen before.  I'm very grateful


There are still some acts to be played out but for the most part the worse seems to be behind us and the organization is stabilized.  In fact it is more than stabilized.  The crisis has brought out a whole group of leaders who are willing to put effort into the organization to make sure it goes on.  In a crazy way, the whole crisis has made the job of my stepping away, that much more likely and easier.


JRR said...

...turns out that Dragons cannot gain enough altitude to reach the high road- where you happen to have been,and from which you never descended to the D-level.

Renee Michelle Goertzen said...

Well, just, ugh. That sounds like a mess. It's awfully nice to hear how much Aunt de-I has been supporting you, though.

alexis said...

sometimes it takes a crisis to shake things up enough for real change to take place! It sounds even more harrowing when you describe it here.