By George A. Boyd © 2017
One of the key abilities of a leader is the ability to envision the future for his enterprise. Coaches also use this ability when they clearly visualize the next steps of growth for their clients. It is also a key aspect of goal setting. It is used in the creative arts. It is used in meditation. These varieties of visioning are described below.
- A strategy to achieve an objective – You use a tactical plan to implement the strategy and you measure its outcome. You frame a successful outcome as a victory; you consider an unsuccessful outcome as a defeat. Military planners use this type of visioning, as do many executives of successful companies.
- A continuum of growth and development – You have progressive realizations, make courageous decisions, and take constructive actions that allow you to mature into a desired future state in which you achieve something you ant to be do, or have. This process of development occurs over time, and moves forward unevenly, as you encounter inner and outer obstacles that impede your progress. You live into this life goal, and establish markers to know you have achieved it. Coaches and developmental psychologists embrace this perspective.
- A vision of the collective future of individuals, groups, or humanity – Through inner visions, revelations, or inspiration, you have a vision of the future. This can be your own future, for other people, for selected groups (e.g., the Jewish prophets foretelling the future for the Jews through the prophecies recorded in the Bible), or for all of humanity. Those given the gift of prophecy assert that God has granted them this ability; seers and prophets of different religious and spiritual traditions claim to possess this gift. In the modern scientific era, those who study future trends and make predictions of the future are called futurists. Those who study trends using mathematical models attempt to predict the most likely outcomes in their area of expertise: these model-based prognostications appear, for example, in meteorology, economics and finance, and insurance actuarial reports.
- Artistic visioning – Sculptors who visualize the finished sculpture in a block of unfinished marble or a painter who beholds his finished vision on a blank canvas use this type of visioning. Architects also utilize it when they conceive of a completed building in all of its details; as do fashion designers when they perceive an image of their elegant garment, and interior designers when they imagine the decor of a home. This bestows the ability to employ 2-D (surface), 3-D (solid or space), and 4-D (changes of a solid or space over time) visualization.
- Goals list – You create a goals list when you write down what you plan to achieve in each area of your life. You operationalize this through having daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly checklists that you mark as you complete each of your written goals. You review your progress periodically and make changes to your plans as circumstances change.
- Religious and actualization visioning – In religious visioning, you imagine what it might like to be a saint, to be in heaven, or to have attained the summit of perfection in your spiritual tradition. In the humanistic vision of actualization, you imagine what your ideal life will be like in rich sensory detail—you might concretize this vision through a “vision board” in which you place images of what you desire to continually remind yourself of what you hope to achieve. You might use prayer to augment your religious visioning; affirmations enhance your visions of personal actualization.
- Inner seeing – Meditation awakens this type of visioning, which includes activating the subtle senses of your astral body (astral visioning), contemplating with the “mind’s eye” (attentional visioning), opening the innate vision of your attentional principle (metavision) and your spirit (heart sight), turning on the octaves of personal and transpersonal intuition (intuitional perception), and realizing the Soul in its own nature (Gnosis, the dawning of enlightenment or core sight).
In Mudrashram®, we teach you how to activate this seventh variety of visioning, the different types of inner vision. You can experience an overview of these types in “The Vision Workshop,” which is available in the Public Webinar area of our website. You learn specific techniques for activating attentional, metavisional, and heart sight in our intermediate classes, the in-person Mudrashram® Master Course in Meditation and the by-mail and online Accelerated Meditation Program. We also teach techniques for activating your transpersonal octave of intuition in our intermediate courses and in our advanced course, the Mudrashram® Advanced Course in Meditation—you will also learn a technique for activating Gnosis (core sight) in our advanced course.
We recommend that you familiarize yourself with all seven types of visioning, and learn how to use those varieties that support you in your career and in your personal and spiritual life. Visioning is a powerful tool at your disposal: use it to create success and personal growth in all aspects of your life.