About

Arno Climbing at Point Perpendicular, Australia

Arno Climbing at Point Perpendicular, Australia

The Warrior’s Way ® and Arno Ilgner

Click on Bio Info for biographical information about Arno Ilgner

Below is a bit of history about how I came to develop the Warrior’s Way® material:

In 1978 I received a BA in Geology from the University of Colorado, but geology was never my passion. What I really loved was climbing. After a tour of duty in the Army, I moved to Wyoming to work in the oil fields. In 1982 the price of oil dropped precipitously and I, along with the majority of oil-field workers, lost my job. I was lost. What do I do now? I was forced to look at myself. Soon thereafter I moved back to Tennessee to work at my father’s industrial-tool business. One feeling kept nagging at me: I needed to align my work with my passion.


Working in the tool business was frustrating. I was in a state of divine discontent. I was hitting bottom. I knew I needed to do something different, so I started looking for help. On the commute to work, I began listening to informational and inspirational audio programs. At home I read numerous philosophy and self-help books. What I found in my search for meaning was this: It’s our responsibility to create our life’s work in something we are passionate about because that is the most effective way we can create happiness in our life. A life’s work in “that something” is the best path to challenge us and it’s the most effective way to serve others.

By 1995 I had mountains of notes, books highlighted, and stacks of favorite audio programs. Could I synthesize all this information and create a course to teach fellow climbers? Going through all my material, I looked for core themes. Key processes kept recurring in slightly different forms. If a person went through one of these processes effectively, he was empowered. If ineffective, he experienced self-limiting thinking and fear. I also recognized that the mass of people do indeed think in a self-limiting way.

I identified seven distinct processes. From these discoveries, I began to create my course. I set the goal: to find a way to teach my insight to climbers. After reading and listening to overwhelming amounts of information I felt I was drowning in it. I needed some guide for my material. I received an insight early one morning as I was waking up. As I was waking, I had a persistent thought. “Follow the warrior’s way that don Juan talks about in the Carlos Castaneda books.” It was just the framework I needed to guide me.

Studying Castaneda’s books and other books on warriorship in more depth, I came up with the guiding principle I was looking for. The warrior’s way is all about impeccable use of attention. Everything hinges upon how one uses attention—-does one waste it or focus it onto the task at hand? This principle was a very pragmatic and tangible guide. By being observant and paying attention, I structured my ideas around a warriorship framework.

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