"You have everything needed for the extravagant journey that is your life."
"A path is only a path, and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you . . . All paths are the same: they lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn't. One makes you strong on a joyful journey; the other weakens you. Ask yourself one question . . . Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn't it is of no use."
"The basic difference between an ordinary man and a warrior is that a warrior takes everything as a challenge while an ordinary man takes everything as a blessing or a curse."
"The aim is to balance the terror of being alive with the wonder of being alive."
"In a world where death is the hunter, my friend, there is no time for regrets or doubts. There is only time for decisions."
"A man of knowledge lives by acting, not by thinking about acting. "
"Upon learning to see a man becomes everything by becoming nothing."
"We hardly ever realize that we can cut anything out of our lives, anytime, in the blink of an eye."
"For me there is only the travelling on paths that have heart, on any path that may have heart, and the only worthwhile challenge is to traverse its full length - and there I travel looking, looking breathlessly."
"To seek freedom is the only driving force I know. Freedom to fly off into that infinity out there. Freedom to dissolve; to lift off; to be like the flame of a candle, which, in spite of being up against the light of a billion stars, remains intact, because it never pretended to be more than what it is: a mere candle."
"For me the world is weird because it is stupendous, awesome, mysterious, unfathomable; my interest has been to convince you that you must assume responsibility for being here, in this marvellous world, in this marvellous desert, in this marvellous time. I want to convince you that you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while, in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it."
"Death is the only wise advisor that we have. Whenever you feel, as you always do, that everything is going wrong and you're about to be annihilated, turn to your death and ask if that is so. Your death will tell you that you're wrong; that nothing really matters outside its touch. Your death will tell you, 'I haven't touched you yet."
"A man goes to knowledge as he goes to war: wide-awake, with fear, with respect, and with absolute assurance. Going to knowledge or going to war in any other manner is a mistake, and whoever makes it might never live to regret it"
"Nobody knows who I am or what I do. Not even I."
"Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow it, you must not stay with it under any conditions. To have such clarity you must lead a disciplined life. Only then will you know that any path is only a path and there is no affront, to oneself or to others, in dropping it if that is what your heart tells you to do. But your decision to keep on the path or to leave it must be free of fear or ambition. I warn you. Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary.
This question is one that only a very old man asks. Does this path have a heart? All paths are the same: they lead nowhere. They are paths going through the bush, or into the bush. In my own life I could say I have traversed long long paths, but I am not anywhere. Does this path have a heart? If it does, the path is good; if it doesn't, it is of no use. Both paths lead nowhere; but one has a heart, the other doesn't. One makes for a joyful journey; as long as you follow it, you are one with it. The other will make you curse your life. One makes you strong; the other weakens you.
Before you embark on any path ask the question: Does this path have a heart? If the answer is no, you will know it, and then you must choose another path. The trouble is nobody asks the question; and when a man finally realizes that he has taken a path without a heart, the path is ready to kill him. At that point very few men can stop to deliberate, and leave the path. A path without a heart is never enjoyable. You have to work hard even to take it. On the other hand, a path with heart is easy; it does not make you work at liking it."
"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."
"Think about it: what weakens us is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of our fellow men. Our self-importance requires that we spend most of our lives offended by someone."
"Only as a warrior can one withstand the path of knowledge. A warrior cannot complain or regret anything. His life is an endless challenge, and challenges cannot possibly be good or bad. Challenges are simply challenges."
"Forget the self and you will fear nothing, in whatever level or awareness you find yourself to be."
"You say you need help. Help for what? You have everything needed for the extravagant journey that is your life."
"The average man is hooked to his fellow men, while the warrior is hooked only to infinity."
"All of us, whether or not we are warriors, have a cubic centimetre of chance that pops out in front of our eyes from time to time. The difference between an average man and a warrior is that the warrior is aware of this, and one of his tasks is to be alert, deliberately waiting, so that when his cubic centimetre pops out he has the necessary speed, the prowess, to pick it up."
"Seek and see all the marvels around you. You will get tired of looking at yourself alone, and that fatigue will make you deaf and blind to everything else. - Don Juan"
"Look at every path closely and deliberately, then ask ourselves this crucial question: Does this path have a heart? If it does, then the path is good. If it doesn't then it is of no use to us."
"Life in itself is sufficient, self-explanatory and complete."
"For an instant I think I saw. I saw the loneliness of man as a gigantic wave which had been frozen in front of me, held back by the invisible wall of a metaphor."
"Anything is one of a million paths. Therefore you must always keep in mind that a path is only a path; if you feel you should not follow, you must not stay with it under any circumstances."
"We are men and our lot in life is to learn and to be hurled into inconceivable new worlds."
"The dying sun will glow on you without burning, as it has done today. The wind will be soft and mellow and your hilltop will tremble. As you reach the end of your dance you will look at the sun, for you will never see it again in waking or in dreaming, and then your death will point to the south. To the vastness."
"Beware of those who weep with realization, for they have realized nothing."
"The internal dialogue is what grounds people in the daily world. The world is such and such or so and so, only because we talk to ourselves about its being such and such and so and so. The passageway into the world of shamans opens up after the warrior has learned to shut off his internal dialogue"
"I have no routines or personal history. One day I found out that they were no longer necessary for me and, like drinking, I dropped them. One must have the desire to drop them and then one must proceed harmoniously to chop them off, little by little. If you have no personal history, no explanations are needed; nobody is angry or disillusioned with your acts. And above all no one pins you down with their thoughts. It is best to erase all personal history because that makes us free from the encumbering thoughts of other people. I have, little by little, created a fog around me and my life. And now nobody knows for sure who I am or what I do. Not even I. How can I know who I am, when I am all this?"
"Malicious acts are performed by people for personal gain … Sorcerers, though, have an ulterior purpose for their acts, which has nothing to do with personal gain. The fact that they enjoy their acts does not count as gain. Rather, it is a condition of their character. The average man acts only if there is a chance for profit. Warriors say they act not for profit but for the spirit."
"The most effective way to live is as a warrior. A warrior may worry and think before making any decision, but once he makes it, he goes his way, free from worries or thoughts; there will be a million other decisions still awaiting him. That's the warrior's way."
"The self-confidence of the warrior is not the self-confidence of the average man. The average man seeks certainty in the eyes of the onlooker and calls that self-confidence. The warrior seeks impeccability in his own eyes and calls that humbleness. The average man is hooked to his fellow men, while the warrior is hooked only to infinity."
"To worry is to become accessible, unwittingly accessible. And once you worry you cling to anything out of desperation; and once you cling you are bound to get exhausted or to exhaust whoever or whatever you are clinging to."
"Self-importance is our greatest enemy. Think about it - what weakens us is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of our fellowmen. Our self-importance requires that we spend most of our lives offended by someone."
"I had been experiencing brief flashes of disassociation, or shallow states of non-ordinary reality."
"To ask me to verify my life by giving you my statistics is like using science to validate sorcery. It robs the world of its magic and makes milestones out of us all."
"The art of being a warrior is to balance the wonder and the terror of being alive."
"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."
"Man lives only to learn. And if he learns it is because it is the nature of his lot, for good or bad."
"We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same"
"A man goes to knowledge as he goes to war, wide awake, with fear, with respect, and with absolute assurance."
"My benefactor told me that my father and mother had lived and died just to have me, and that their own parents had done the same for them. He said that warriors were different in that they shift their assemblage points enough to realize the tremendous price that has been paid for their lives. This shift gives them the respect and awe that their parents never felt for life in general, or for being alive in particular."
"The hardest thing in the world is for a warrior to let others be."
"...that was the way human beings are; they love to be told what to do, but they love even more to fight and not do what they are told, and thus they get entangled in hating the one who told them in the first place."
"If one is to succeed in anything, the success must come gently, with a great deal of effort but with no stress or obsession."
"Nothing can temper the spirit of a warrior as much as the challenge of dealing with impossible people in positions of power. Only under those conditions can warriors acquire the sobriety and serenity to withstand the pressure of the unknowable."
"To be a warrior a man has to be, first of all, and rightfully so, keenly aware of his own death. But to be concerned with death would force any one of us to focus on the self and that would be debilitating. So the next thing one needs to be a warrior is detachment. The idea of imminent death, instead of becoming an obsession, becomes an indifference.
Now you must detach yourself; detach yourself from everything. Only the idea of death makes a man sufficiently detached so he is incapable of abandoning himself to anything. Only the idea of death makes a man sufficiently detached so he can't deny himself anything. A man of that sort, however, does not crave, for he has acquired a silent lust for life and for all things of life. He knows his death is stalking him and won't give him time to cling to anything, so he tries, without craving, all of everything."
"Once you decide something put all your petty fears away. Your decision should vanquish them. I will tell you time and time again, the most effective way to live is as a warrior. Worry and think before you make any decision, but once you make it, be on your way free from worries or thoughts; there will be a million other decisions still awaiting you. That's the warrior's way. A warrior thinks of his death when things become unclear. The idea of death is the only thing that tempers our spirit."
"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."
"To seek the perfection of the warrior's spirit is the only task worthy of our temporariness, our manhood."
"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."
"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."
"A warrior must cultivate the feeling that he has everything
needed for the extravagant journey that is his life. What counts
for a warrior is being alive. Life in itself is sufficient,
self-explanatory and complete. Therefore, one may say without being presumptuous that the
experience of experiences is being alive."