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A Sample Chapter of The Fork Model by Rudy Vandamme

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Many of the projects we are involved in have lost their meaningful ness. Yes, you are working on some projects, but no, you can’t really remember why you started them in the first place. You could conclude that you are better off looking for some beautiful kind of development in an inner spiritual world. So long, real world; I am retreating to my little island to shut myself off.

Nonetheless, even spiritual desires need to be expressed in concrete terms. If you seek deep satisfaction with life, this will be expressed in real and visible behavior such as ‘responding calmly when I am in a traffic jam’. Spiritual Being requires you to do something; it must have some real effect on the world. You simply can’t ‘Be first, and act later’. Floating on a cloud is not a meaningful activity. The world will determine whether your castle in the air is fit to live in. ‘Being’ requires a carrier: your body.

To develop is to become familiar with the possibilities and impossibilities of the world. You will not become an artist until you set about getting to grips with your material. This world is a world of opportunities, and the adventure is for you to get going with it. You will often make mistakes or fail to achieve your goals. Your only option is to accept limitations and personal failures. You will be disappointed. That isn’t bad in itself. You have a very real chance of developing ego-strength along the way. In any event, you will be proud of the fact that you got to grips with the world. As you try to achieve results, an adventure of give and take will develop: you invest and you get something in return. There is challenge, mystery, and beauty to be found in this human-world relationship. Projects are the way of being involved in development in a grounded way. Meaning- ful projects strengthen who you are, and they feed your development. They bring results that return to you. In this way, a project becomes a celebration of the fact that you live in a world with your body. Symbolically speaking, you can look at it this way: development needs a home. Projects provide a home; they allow you to act concretely and find a place. You can add a great deal of power to your development by getting results in meaningful and goal-directed ways.

2. Self-guidance: emancipation

People usually think of self-guidance as a technical competence: guiding yourself in order to act in a goal-directed way. Mastering this competence starts in childhood. Later on in life, you add more complex skills, such as deciding on your studies, or managing yourself in your busy life, or learning to accept ageing and disease.

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