…By the way I think this “how to carry yourself” is applicable to more than just our conversation last night. It seems like some of the boys are excessively talkative (about nothing particular) or unengaging (blowing by an adult without saying hi) or totally goofy …or……or…you probably know what I mean. I guess my question is how do we work with our young men without focusing on the externals. I know it is not about social etiquette but the heart. Any additional thoughts—even for the younger guys—would be appreciated, especially since I was just asked about them this morning (their propensity toward being very silly when they are together was the specific topic)…
Hi Grant……It’s really okay to conform the outside for an Inner cause, in the training process, to some extent, as long as the discussion is primarily about the Inner. An example that illustrates this to me is the buttons on your shirt. If you were to go to work with the top three buttons of your shirt undone, would you “feel” differently on the INSIDE as you were around co-workers, male and female? Ah…the external AFFECTS the internal, rather than JUST the internal controlling the external. If you button up your shirt, or tuck in your shirt, you will tend to carry yourself somewhat differently automatically, if there is any substance to you at all. Here is the point. If you make the boys greet adults properly, pay attention to details, be kind, respectful, dress with some dignity, get haircuts that do not overly “conform to the patterns of the world” and the like—AND talk to them about their Inner life AS you adjust their behavior…you are creating an environment in their heart and mind where they can more quickly SEE if they are ever inclined to do so. THAT is hard to explain! Make sense?