Your Beautiful and Inspiring Book is Exactly the Right Type
Just as the five elements work as a team to sustain wellbeing in the body, a balanced mix of five basic types of people—assigned as archetypes—ensure society thrives and avoids downfall and catastrophe. I was fascinated to learn about these five types several years ago in Simon Chokoisky’s book The Five Dharma Types: Vedic Wisdom for Discovering Your Purpose and Destiny and it’s something that's stuck with me. Now I often try to guess “the type” of various people I know or come across. If personality types fascinate you, too, I highly recommend you read the book. And for instant gratification, in exchange for opting-in to his e-newsletter list, you can take the free test on Simon’s site to determine what type you are. I'm not going to go into too much detail about the types, or how they work as a group, because you can learn about all of that much better from Mr. Chokoisky, but I do want to share the gist with you.
It Take a Variety of Types to Live in Harmony
Here are the five types to consider and very, very brief qualities associated with each (read the book to discover a much richer understanding of all five and to learn how they work together):
The Renaissance men and women of the world, these people are knowledgable on a wide variety of subjects and make the best teachers. It's their role to assign meaning and purpose to life and to inspire and counsel others.
Laborers require little to feel gratified in life and in addition to be the builders and creators, they're also very grounded and devoted to loving connections with others—particularly family.
Merchant types ensure commerce flows and doesn't get stagnant in the hands of greed. They also have the ability to evoke strong emotions in others and love frivolity and having fun.
As you can guess, the Warrior's role is to protect society. They are the most disciplined and skilled of all the types and can master nearly anything. They are usually perfectionists.
Outsiders are innovative and rebellious. Ultimately, society relies on this type for innovation and advancement—anything requiring radical thinking.
Every Individual Type is Vital to Success of the Whole
No one type is superior to the other four. Each is actually essential to a happy and fully functioning culture. As with any philosophy around archetypes, we are all a mix of all the types, and that holds true with the Dharma Types. At the same time, one type will always dominate and that type has its shadow side as well as its noble qualities. Try to imagine removing one of the above types from the population. Not a pretty picture, right? Or, imagine there being too many or all of one type. Again . . . not a world I would want to live in. Yet, if we're not aware of how important it is to acknowledge why we can't all be the same and that the world does indeed run on there being a nice variety, we can tend to think everyone should be like us—whatever type that is. Feelings of shame can occur when multiple messages around us are telling us we "should" be more like the Warrior for instance—fearlessly defending all of the injustices in society—when in fact we may be an Outsider or an Educator and actually have a very different role to play. No one type can be completely content on his/her own. We need one another to not only enjoy life fully, but to survive.
What Does This Have to Do with Books?
Just as we need a variety of people types to thrive in society, I believe we need a nice variety of art-inspiration books to develop our creative wellbeing. So I came up with my own 5 Book Types!
This type teaches someone specific techniques to apply to a variety of projects. Example: Soldering, Color Theory, Photography
Project books usually include a handful of basic techniques and then a variety of projects to which the techniques are applied. Example: Painting Seascapes, Knitting Sweaters, Paper Party Decorations
This type takes several techniques, combines them in a unique way and then instructs how to use them not to replicate provided projects, but to be able to design or carry out one's own projects.
What I consider to be creativity books may not actually have any techniques to share, but rather encourage ways to bring more creative time into one's life using a variety of prompts or suggested approaches.
This is pure art for art's sake. While there may also be content about process or technique, the primary focus is to provide inspiring examples of art that the reader can use as a jumping-off point in his/her own art. This would similar to going to a museum.
Maybe you hadn't previously considered this variety when the notion of writing a book first occurred to you and you began to worry your offering didn't fit the "norm." I think you'll agree with me that we'd be very sad if one of these types of books went away, as each nourishes a different part of us and encourages growth in a specific area. We need a variety of types! If publishing a book that will inspire others is something that's been calling to you, but you don't know where to begin (maybe you're afraid you lack the writing skills?) or how to organize your ideas, I'd love to help you figure it out. You are exactly right, just as you are and you're definitely the right type to inspire others with what you know—whether that's in a book or another form. xo
P.S. I'm currently working on a new offering that will support you in going from desire-to-publish-a-book to complete book outline, ready to begin writing and creating! Be sure you're on my e-newsletter list to be among the first to know and to receive special offers. Enter your address in the box at the bottom of this page.