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Leadership Principles of the Warrior - Series One – An Introduction By Randy Gonzalez From a project, originally entitled, “Leadership Principles of the Christian Warrior”, the words lead, leader and leadership have various connotations in both the secular and religious world. We tend to conjure all kinds of notions about what a leader is, or what a leader ought to be. Yet, few really appreciate, from a biblical perspective, the meaning of true Judeo-Christian centered leadership. All our worldly conceptions about leadership have become greatly disturbed by mundane mediocrity in the past few decades. But, since the beginning of recorded history, Judeo-Christian conceptions have had special designations as to what a leader should be, know and do in service to himself or herself, family, community and country Kingdom. Yet, often, misguided perceptions of leadership come from the Judeo-Christian realm itself, as well as the humanistic pop cultural dominion. Judeo-Christian leadership and the leadership principles of the Yet, some would

Christian Warrior are truly unique concepts of human existence.

ascribe misdirected ideas in their definition of what "leadership" is about. For example, you might think, as many assert, leadership is about the following kinds of concepts that include control, power, influence and cleverness. In moving toward a more distinct and differentiated definition of leadership, a leader is called to lead by example and dedication, in obedience to a set of higher standards. He or she accepts a calling of noble quality, uniquely felt from within, by virtue of personal characteristics. Reflected by one’s unique personality, leaders set the example for others to follow. Her or his conduct provides the basis for a code of behavior that anciently has been expressed in the Code of Bushido, or the way of the samurai. This suggests an ascended state of self-transformation, beyond lower level fixations on personal needs, with a high degree of individual self-discipline. Leaders must exert effort to be impeccable in all actions and decisions. They must possess the capacity for influencing others by virtue of their sensitivity to another’s dysfunctions. And, she or he must be honest in matters of heartfelt intentions, peacemakers of authenticity, and creators who withstand the attacks of their detractors and misguided critics.

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Leaders diligently strive to walk in the “way of the warrior”, while their humility prevents them are thinking they’re perfect by any arrogant stretch of their imagination. Sometimes they may falter, but always they are trying to rise above and strengthen their skills. Their leadership ability shines upon others, as they focus on inner maturity, as opposed to external deterministic excuses. To them, causality and subsequent effects are driven at the hands of the leader. Ideation is from within, as free will stimulates the consciousness to action of a proactive nature. Competent leaders must be a woman or man of his or her word. A “written contract” for getting things done should not be needed. Others must be able to trust what he or she says and relies on his or her commitment to do the right thing at the right time. Leaders must be cautious of hypocrisy, deception and foolish notions that concocted fallacies for subjective validation. They must be credible in both word and deed and they must be authentic. As a leader, you do what is correct because it is true, regardless of what other may say or do, or what might be politically expedient. Uh huh, sure, wishful thinking, especially when a promotion is on the line, right? None the less, your actions are not based on appearance, symbolism over substance, or any other notion. What you do is done not for the sake of personal gain or honor, but because you are in service to the greater cause of excellence in leadership and service. In what might be called the Judeo-Christian tradition, one might be mindful of the example of the biblical portrayal of the centurion. A warrior of great authority and power, the centurion acknowledged the authority of a higher morality, and was recognized for his "great faith". The centurion expressed humility in spite of his power and ability to carry out extreme measures against others. It is a picture of a warrior submitting himself to the greater cosmic spectrum in humility and devotion. To be an effective leader, the choice of such a state of being, is far different from the worldly notions of fixated self-satiations for success, power, political influence and materialistic gainfulness. Differentiated leadership is one in which the woman or the man of such character gazes upon the social landscape. In so doing, he or she asserts one does not need the things valued by so highly by the abjectness of gluttonous materiality. Spartan simplicity suffices the essence of self-evolution.

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It is not an orientation toward materialistic self-promotion, or self-centered focus, or arrogance of one-upmanship. A bigger castle, larger chariot and lofty title, another vassal, each is but a hassle distracting the true measure of one’s creative mettle. Competition is in the quest for success by solving the necessary problems at hand through imaginative ingenuities. As leaders, we must come to know, recognize and understand the wisdom of self-evolved maturity. For Judeo-Christian adherent, the leader has a role to play that involves strenuous virtues, impeccable character qualities, and a warrior mindset, with teacher-philosopher abilities to guide others. A worldly grotesque concept of commercialism, in the profane overindulgence at any cost, is not the kind of credible leadership suggested here. In Judeo-Christian conceptualization of leadership, it is offered that you to give something of yourself for the evolving nature of your true self. By contrast, in humanistic leadership, perception is self-focused in an adversarial sense for self-gratification regardless of others. For the warrior leader, first he or she gets his or her “house” in order (matters of selfactualization, self-evolving, differentiated mindset). Secondly, the leader or leader to be, seeks nothing from others, needs nothing, and simply nothing. You don’t need constant attention, self-validation, or the perverse belongingness of frequent recognition, adulation or special attentiveness from “self-healing” gurus. Who cares? In the end, when the curtain closes and the lights go out, and the body become dust, who remembers and what does it matter? Over time, people move on and all things come and go. You journey to substantiate a better version of your previous self for the necessity of you. Thirdly, you remain content with who you are and what you have, where you are going. Here resides the mystery of the mountaintop for the realm of the true leader. It is the summit of his or her strength and hers or his to command. If we examine leadership definitions, we can uncover some interesting ideas about the concept of leadership. For instance, in regard to the idea of "lead", the first expression given is to become a guide and show the way. That is, a leader must understand the seriousness of such responsibility, become a competent guide and to know the right way to go. Leaders must examine relationships with others every minute of every day and ensure the appropriateness of those interactions. To guide the way, a true leader must understand the nature of the mission and the goals to achieve.

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The authentic leader must have confidence and competence to guide others along the right paths within the organization, even when they resist. Leaders must accept their calling to lead, and then do it by virtue of their special talents and psychological gifts. She or he must consider the delicate balance of human forces at play around him or her. If you’re different and independent minded, then there will be opposition. And, that is a narrow gate by which you enter. Such boldness of command requires you take charge and work diligently in the capacity for which you have been chosen. We are all on the mission field of some endeavor in some walk of life. Wherever we are in our journey, we must be leaders in whatsoever we do. Leadership is an expression of a vision that people will be willing to follow. It is a challenging fine line upon which they are being led. You will be exposed to criticism, deception, and backstabbing all the way. You must be vigilant but not vindictive, corrective but not vengeful. The objective is to accomplish the mission. To which, leaders must guide others on this common purpose by the quality of the standards they have set. Thus, once again, the basis of which is the necessity for an effective leader to be willing to demonstrate behavior by exemplary conduct. Although far from perfect, the leader endeavors to be impeccable in his or her conduct and treatment of others. No matter what their status in the organization or lives outside the operations, everyone is treated with dignity and respectful empathy. However, there will be times, when you must simply walk away from the divisiveness and negativity others create around you. There’s no requirement you subject yourself to the foolish, the stupid or the hateful manifestations of human devolution in devolving self-gratifications. By contrast, you must endeavor to exercise effective leadership, by demonstrating the capacity of well-reasoned proficiency. By going first, the leader will not ask those who follow to do anything he or she would not do. Leaders readily accept and acknowledge the challenge of leadership, and know they must work hard to develop their abilities. Leadership in a metaphorical sense is a "warrior-hood". As in the Code of Bushido, for example, the adherent understands the affinity between being a warrior and being a skilled leader. For the leader-warrior construct there is by correlation with the "bushido” carried out within the organizational framework. In its uncomplicated straightforward precepts, this means "military-knight-ways" for the discipline of duty.

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Akin to the traditions of Judeo-Christian precepts, "bushido" is a chivalric code. Of which, one’s conduct engenders a mind-set and character that is unique, in terms of the past, the present and the future for personal transformation. As the samurai code speaks of courage, daring, devotion, discipline, justice and honor, so does the way of the leader. Reflective of "warrior spirit", it is that which directs a full-scale attack on adverse oppositional forces, unproductivity and incompetence. Such a framework invokes

personal accountability and responsibility for one's actions. So, you have to grow up and act like an adult and repent from the foolishness of inferior thinking. None of this should be construed to suggest a doctrinaire or dogmatic attitude about anything except changing oneself. It must be remembered that you have been called to a higher level of service. It’s called leadership. We are not to be driven by this call, but to be challenged in our responsibilities. A leader, as a warrior in the Judeo-Christian tradition, practices correctness in mindful compassion for others. You strive to treat all persons, when possible and humanly feasible, in a just and humane manner. It is interesting to historical note, that the samurai of ancient Japan were also considered servants. What an interesting contrast between the ancient warrior class, and the service modern day leadership. Once that choice was made, the process begins in

productive self-revolution. It is not an easy direction, but it is the only route to follow. We must be willing to endure much in our service and be prepared for the hardships that come. Being a leader is a process that influences others to accomplish the organization’s undertakings. You have to carry out these tasks by applying your attributes, which include beliefs, values, ethics, character, knowledge and skills and so forth. Although you come to know these things, followers watch what you do. They sense if you are an honorable leader or a self-serving phony, who misuses authority to look good and get promoted. That means your leadership is everything you do that affects associational accomplishments and the well-being of subordinates. If you want to be a respected leader, believed and trusted, concentrate on who you are, what you know, and how you do things effectively. Leadership quality and how it is defined in the real world is a human mirror of those who lead as well as those who follow. A leader's appearance, spirit, bearing, demeanor, words and actions give feeling, meaning and life to what a leader really is. You have to be willing to stand alone if necessary.

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