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Teal Swan Articles

How To Be More Productive

Productivity has become an addiction. We use productivity to fill the void where self worth aught to be. Most of us in the western world are pumped full of the societal message that we are not loved for who we are, we are only loved for what we do. When what we do matters that much, we try to do as much as we can to earn approval. We wake up every day convinced that we have to prove ourselves and justify the fact that we are alive with work. In truth, productivity can only be the result of inspiration. When one is inspired, the productivity takes no effort. Manifestation and fruition is the quick and natural byproduct of being in the flow of creation. Creation is the result of inspiration. Inspiration ensures that any action we take, is backed by universal energy, the same energy that creates worlds. So the real question is not how do I become more productive, it is how do I become more inspired?
Inspiration is the result of allowing yourself to go in the direction of happiness. Many people think they are doing this already when in fact they are not. Most of us are sacrificing our current happiness for the sake of the promise of future happiness. For example, many people think they will be happy if they have money and so they keep a job they hate in order to make they money that they think will add to their happiness. It is a perfectly valid desire to have money. It is fine to desire as much of it as you could possibly want. But if you’re working at a job you hate in order to get it, you’re sacrificing your current happiness for the promise of future happiness. By doing that, you’re cutting off the flow of source energy to the current moment. As a result, you will start to feel burnt out and your passion will wane. If you want to feel inspiration, you must first discover what makes you truly happy and truly feel passion. Then, you must do that thing or those things, no matter the perceived risk of doing so. Passion makes productivity effortless. It makes it so the energy you exert to do something, feels good instead of bad.
Here are some tips that will help you to be more productive.
Stop waiting for the perfect time and perfect conditions before you act. The most productive people in the world understand the value of immediacy. If you are creating your own reality, why wait for external conditions to change? Jump in and start whatever it is you want to produce. The quicker you do so, the quicker you’ll produce it.
  Think big. The bigger your goal is, the higher you will reach; and if you reach that high, even if you don’t make it all the way to the goal you’ve set, you will have made it much further and accomplished much more than you would have dreamed of if you had set your sights low. Think of a long jumper. If the long jumper sets a goal of jumping 30 feet, he is less likely to make it to 30 feet because his mind sees that number as “hard to accomplish”. If however, he sets a goal of jumping 35 feet, his brain automatically undervalues every number under that. Because he is so focused on that extreme distance, he is likely to make it quickly to 30 feet or even more and thus set a world record.
  Get rid of your tools of distraction. Cut out TV or video games and save those for rare occasions. Make sure to also cut out wasted time on the Internet. Distractions are an escape from life. You did not come here to escape from life. You came here to experience and use your life fully. It will amaze you how much time you actually have when you are no longer distracting yourself and it will amaze you how much you can get done if you spend your time working towards your goals instead of distracting yourself.
  At nighttime, make a list of everything you want to accomplish the next day. Cross the items off one by one as you do them throughout the next day. This will help you to feel productive and as if you have achieved something. When you feel like you are productive, you will be more productive, end of story.
  Quit multi tasking. Humans are not actually capable of multi tasking. Pick one thing and commit your full attention to that one thing until you complete it.
  Break your big goals down into small steps. And then break those steps down into even smaller steps. As you accomplish those steps, cross them off the list. Most of us are incapacitated when beginning a project by the feeling of being overwhelmed. This process of breaking your projects down into small steps greatly reduces your feeling of being overwhelmed. You will get so much more done when you are able to clearly define your plan and see your progress as you complete each step. We have the tendency of getting overwhelmed because we are looking at the whole staircase and the top of the staircase seems to be so far from where we are standing. But if we would break the staircase down into steps and focus on the step in front of us, we would reach the top quickly.
  Take care of your body by exercising, getting enough sleep and eating healthy foods. When you move your body, you reduce your stress levels and clear your mind. Plus, it may seem counterintuitive, but when you exercise you actually increase your energy levels so it is easier to complete your tasks. When you allow yourself to sleep, you allow your body to recharge and re boot. This guarantees that you will have much more energy to dedicate to your work. Imagine a world-class sprinter staying up all night and then trying to run a race the next day. It is obvious that their performance would suffer. Their energy levels would be depleted. But this is the same thing you’re expecting of yourself. Your mind needs this time to re charge.
Eating an unhealthy diet and eating sporadically greatly inhibits your productivity level. Eating healthy foods enables your body and mind to support your work. What you eat becomes your physical body. You need a healthy body to do what you need to do in order to be productive in a given day.
  Now I want to introduce you to the most important concept when it comes to being productive, it is the spiritual concept of the “highest and best use”. If we are to live in alignment with our highest good and with our true purpose on this earth, we should be prioritizing our lives according to the ~highest~ use of our time and according to the ~best~ use of our time. Knowing of course that the highest and best use of our time always changes. For example, sometimes the highest and best use of our time is play, other times the highest and best use of our time is business. We must have the discernment to know what our priority is for the current moment so we are using our energies in their most efficient way towards their most effective use.
Create the habit of asking yourself this question, “What is the highest and best use of my time right now?” Ask yourself this question all day long. Use it to organize your to do lists in terms of priority. If you catch yourself being distracted on face book or watching TV, stop and ask yourself this question. Ask yourself this question when you finish a task. Don’t be fooled though, sometimes if we are honest with ourselves, the highest and best use of our time is in fact taking a break. This question is a demonstration of appreciation for life itself. It is to say, I honor this life that I am living to the degree that I am committed to it and to the degree that I will use the gifts I am endowed with and exalt my hours here on earth to their highest potential. It is a profoundly spiritual commitment to make, in the form of a very simple question. Let’s face it, we all want to be more and have more and do more. This enterprising spirit is part of the human experience. It is a beautiful desire when it is not being fueled by the idea that we are not good enough with what we are and what we have and what we do right here and now.
Productivity is the natural byproduct of inspiration, which is the result of following your joy and doing what makes you passionate. So be brave enough to admit to what that is and you will not need these tips to get you going. You will not need any help to be productive at all. A multitude of creations will flow through you effortlessly.

Connecting with Your Heart

Our bodies are more like eco systems than organisms. There are a great many beings that call your body home, such as microorganisms and bacteria. These beings are indivisible from you because they benefit your existence and you could not exist without them any more than they could exist without you. What many people do not know is that your cells and organs are also more like separate beings that call your body home. We have the tendency of viewing them as if they are machine like parts of ourselves. In truth, they are indivisible from you, but they also have their own consciousness and personalities. You, (the you that you call by your name) are really the collection of all of these things. You are in essence a small-scale collective consciousness.
Understanding and beginning to view your body in this way is really important because so much health and vitality can come as a result of connecting with and honoring the separate parts of the ecosystem that is your body. And one of the most important parts of your body to connect with is the heart.
The heart is the first organ to form when the body is developing in utero. When an embryo is made up of only a very few cells, each cell can get the nutrients it needs directly from its surroundings. But as the cells divide and multiply to form a growing body, it soon becomes impossible for nutrients to reach all the cells efficiently without help. The cells also produce waste that they need to get rid of. So the heart and the blood and circulatory system that branches off from the heart, form the first organ system to develop in the human body. The heart is the connection between all future systems, which comprise the body. This is why it is so often seen as the center of your being. You can use the heart as a doorway between physical and non-physical reality. It is the main doorway between your soul and your physical body. You can also use the heart to send energy to all parts of your body (much like it sends blood to all parts of your body).
I want to introduce you to an exercise that you can use in order to connect with any part of your body, but today we are going to use it to connect with the heart. To begin with, close your eyes and place your hands, one on top of the other, over the top of your heart. Your heart is located right under your sternum in the center of your chest. Take some time to feel how your heart feels to you on both a sensation level and on an emotional level. If I were to mention the name of one of your friends, you would notice that there is an accompanying sensation that comes along with your idea of that person. This, more so than their name or details about them, is their signature. This is how your being recognizes them as different from the rest of the people you know. Your heart is like a friend. A friend you probably don’t know very well yet. But it has it’s own signature just like your friends do. This is why you can feel it as a being inside of you with a very specific life’s purpose to fulfill… namely to keep you alive. Imagine your heart as a separate being that lives inside you.
What does your heart feel like? If your heart were a living being, what personality would this being have? (Feel free to visualize your heart as an actual mini being or even as a mini person if you wish) What would this being want? What would this being dislike? Does this being feel appreciated and loved or does it feel ignored and undervalued? Just take some time to be with your heart exactly as it is and exactly how it feels right here and now. There is no right or wrong way to have a conversation with your heart. You intuitively know what kind of conversation needs to take place. But I will give you a basic outline for developing a 2-way connection with your heart. Begin by asking your heart directly, “What makes you unhappy?” “What do you need me to do differently?” “If you could have one wish, what would it be?” And “What do you have to tell me?” You will receive the answers on an intuitive level. Either you will hear the answers or you will see them in your minds eye, or you will find that you just know the answers intuitively because they will pop up in your consciousness.
Next, it’s your turn to speak to your heart. Address the concerns that were put forth by your heart. Acknowledge that you value your heart’s needs and wants and perspective. After all, it represents the perspective of your true self. What do you think your heart needs to hear? Tell that to your heart. You can speak to your heart inside your mind’s eye if you do not wish to speak out loud. Next, take steps to fulfill the wish that your heart expressed. Keep in mind; this might not be something that can be accomplished in one sitting. It might for example be a lifestyle change that your heart wants you to make.
Once you feel as if you have reached an understanding with your heart, take some time to express gratitude for your heart. Acknowledge the work that it is faithfully and loyally doing to keep you alive and vital because it loves you. Express the love you have for your heart. Visualize that love flowing into your heart and nourishing your heart. See your heart sucking this love up and pumping it through your arteries and veins throughout the entire rest of your body. Feel your body as it too soaks up this love that the heart is pumping to it. Watch that love diffuse throughout your whole body and throughout each tiny little cell.
Just before you come back to the present moment, make a promise to your heart (if you feel ready) that you will always be available to talk to if it wants or needs to talk to you and that because you love it and have gratitude for it, you are going to fulfill it’s wishes because you agree with it’s wisdom and perspective. Then, take four deep breaths, allowing the oxygen to completely fill your lungs and completely exit your lungs and when you are finished, open your eyes.
The more connected you are with your heart, the more connected you are with your own personal truth and the more connected you are with your soul. Your heart bares the burden of the emotional trauma that you have experienced throughout your life. Relieving that burden and expressing love and gratitude for your heart is a critical part of your spiritual progression. You are in a relationship with your heart. Your heart is your best friend and it is your life partner. If you want yourself to thrive, you have to treat the relationship with your heart like you would treat the relationship with your significant other.

To Marry or Not To Marry?

Marriage is a very controversial topic in today’s world. Some believe it is a beautiful expression of love, others believe it is an archaic restriction. But the drive to pair up with someone is imbedded in our DNA. It ensures the survival of our species on both a purely procreation level and on a physical survival level. Couple-hood is the primary social structure of our species. It has been for thousands of years. This has some serious implication. It means that at this point in time, rather than dissolving couple hood, strengthening it and transforming it into its highest aspect, is what will actually transform society.
About 11,000 years ago, humans turned from a hunter-gatherer species into a farming species. What that means is, we no longer had to be mobile nomads because we learned how to corral animals and grow food. This is the point at which “property” became a concept in human society. And property had to be protected as well as recognized and honored by others. Property ownership was what gave rise to economics and the idea of wealth vs. poverty. It was at this point that pair bonding became less about attraction and more about economics. Women and children (who also needed protection) were seen an extension of property ownership and wealth. The arranged marriage was the first real form of socially recognized marriage to take place. Arranged marriage was designed to ensure the economic and social status of the family. This design actually lasted all the way until the eighteenth century; when people began to see arranged marriage as a loss of the personal freedom inherent in choosing whom to pair bond with. At this point, marriage became more of a contract designed to fulfill psychological needs, personal happiness and stability.
Marriage is the act of making one’s relationship known, recognized and official to the public. And it is done with the intention that the relationship be permanent throughout the duration of the couple’s life. This act is not only a social action, it is also a legal action in our current society. On a surface level, a couple may marry for legal reasons, social reasons, financial reasons, religious reasons, spiritual reasons, emotional reasons or libidinal reasons. And once the union is recognized, it is considered a contract.
It is important to note that the terms of marriage are not set. The couple themselves decides upon the terms of marriage. The terms that come along with marriage are agreed upon rights and restrictions. Some examples of terms are legal rights such as each spouse is entitled to half of the property that is owned and sexual restrictions such as each spouse is not allowed to engage in sexual acts with anyone outside the marriage. But the terms of marriage that come with both rights and restrictions, are heavily influenced by culture, regardless of whether those terms are in alignment or out of alignment with universal truth. This is where things get complicated. On an emotional level, it can be a beautiful intention to save and gift one’s sexuality only to one person. You can do that without restricting your love. On a social level however, this decision can merely be a socially conditioned expectation that is a holdover from a time where illegitimate children were a threat to property and ownership rights. If this is the case, it comes from a place of restriction. It is important to look over the terms of marriage with a fine tooth comb, so both partners know each other’s expectations and so each term of the marriage can be questioned by both partners fully. It is important to be clear about your reasons for those terms instead of simply blindly accepting them. Because they were someone else’s before you adopted them. From universal perspective, everything in existence is you. This means, every person is you. Prioritizing one person over any other person makes no sense from that perspective. This is why as we evolve as a species into a higher vibration towards greater alignment with source perspective, marriage will cease to be a function of society. We will evolve towards polyamory. The contrast of separation would not exist if you held an enlightened perspective, so you would never think to desire unity and thus pair bonding would not be an impulse. The desire to bond with others will cease to exist as the perception of separation dissipates. So, why you might ask is marriage in alignment? Why would it be a good idea to engage in the experience of pair bonding from universal perspective? Because relationships are currently the heart of expansion and the expansion coming from the experience of being in a primary relationship is immense. Your partner will become your biggest mirror and so, committing to them, is the same thing as committing to self-awareness. Also, the perspective that comes along with being pair bonded in a unified couple is an immense vibrational improvement upon the perspective of independent individuality. You MUST evolve to stay in a relationship long term with someone. Why? Personalities change, desires change, bodies age, romantic love waxes and wanes, life still provides you contrast and no relationship is free of conflict. The only way to remain together is to become flexible and open and become the best version of yourself. Those states are all highly spiritually aligned states to be in.
Marriage is it’s own kind of spiritual practice. If we were to run the other way from relationships when the going got tough, we would forfeit the opportunity to grow by running from our own reflection and our own shadows. They would continue to chase us from partner to partner and we would keep running from them to the next partner and the next partner instead of facing our own shadows when they are mirrored in the other person and finding not only transformation but also love for them. By committing to someone else in marriage, we are ultimately committing to ourselves.
Marriage is an opportunity to practice unity and therefore oneness with someone that is currently perceived as an “other”. This is why it so often takes place between a man and a woman. It serves to to harmonize the polarity of the genders. Legal marriage is really a function of society instead of spirituality. This is why the decision to be legally married should be more about wanting legal and social recognition for the marriage. Love and commitment is an entirely separate thing from legality. This is why the spiritual ceremony of marriage is much more important than the legal ceremony. It is the opportunity to set forth a very powerful intention to remain unified and for that unity to be supported by others. This intention brings us back to the most ultimate truth of oneness, which is why weddings can be so beautiful. They remind us all of our true essence, which is love. It is important to understand that you cannot ever know what you will desire tomorrow. Each relationship provides contrast, which causes you to want more or want something else. And when a desire is born, it cannot be denied. This causes great suffering. For a couple to stay happily married, they cannot ever settle. They must continually evolve in tandem. If a couple wants drastically different things and wants them badly, they must part ways and no contract should ever hold them together. It is no kind of enlightened state to thwart your own expansion for the sake of a promise made. That is self-sacrifice. That will not ever end well and it is not seen as an admirable trait outside the confines of the societally programmed human mind. But before you panic and start thinking it’s impossible to find someone who will want the same things as you throughout your life, stop and think about this. You can desire (and therefore ask) the universe, prior to even meeting someone on a romantic level, to connect with a person whose desires will be compatible with yours or who is capable of expanding in tandem with you throughout the duration of your life. You cannot have desires that are not meant to be yours. That means if you truly want a life long marriage, and you allow it into your life, the universe will bring you a mate who is capable of being with you for your entire life without their expansion taking them in a different direction.
Love is not the only valid reason to get married any more than social standing is the only valid reason to get married. There is no wrong reason to get married, because there is no such thing as a desire that is wrong. If you want to get married for financial reasons, it is fine. There is nothing wrong with you. If you want to get married for a green card, it is fine. There is nothing wrong with you. If you want to get married for social standing, it is fine. There is nothing wrong with you. If you want to get married for love, it is fine. There is nothing wrong with you. What is important is that you are clear about your reasons. If you are not clear about your reasons, you are being run by societal conditioning. You are out of alignment with your own personal truth. The main argument against marriage is that it is an outdated idea that restricts the expression of love and the expression of self… It divides us. Ultimately, our species will evolve to the extent where the pair bond will no longer serve our expansion. There will be no point to it at all. But those who seek to eradicate marriage as an answer to finding this state of non-separation and unity are trying to skip a step. They are usually trying to skip a step because they are resist to marriage due to the fact that marriage feels like a lack of freedom to them. If you have a resistance to marriage, you must make peace with marriage and look at marriage from the perspective that it is potential freedom before you can really live a life of polyamory and be in alignment at the same time. How do you know if you’re out of alignment relative to polyamory because you are resisting monogamy? The partners you line up with, desire monogamy and thus it is a source of contention between you and those you are romantically involved with! Our pair bonding society will only give way to a polyamorous society when a great many things change within society, most specially, our ability to create harmonious marriages that are based on love. Most of us are not there yet. Most people in today’s society are not yet capable of polyamory. Even the people, who enjoy a polyamorous lifestyle, tend to leave a trail of tears in their wake. Why? Because we all base our self-esteem off of our primary relationships. This attachment we have to external approval is due to how we are parented as children. Until the way we parent children changes, most of the people in society will be dependent on others for their self-concept.
A great many people in the new age community try to become ok with open relationships based on the idea that the state of “free love” is a more spiritual state to aspire to be in. Meanwhile, they feel terrible about feeling terrible about it. But the reality is, none of us love ourselves fully. And so, we’re yet again skipping a step. In truth, for most of us, the step we need to take is the step of valuing ourselves enough to allow ourselves to want to experience someone choosing us and only us as their partner and mate. If you would like to experience this, then you are meant to experience it and you cannot deny that desire. Maybe, after years of experiencing what it is like to be loved fully as someone’s only mate, you and your mate will decide you are ready for a new experience and then you both may be ready to try polyamory. Or, you may decide that you love being enclosed inside the security and warmth of partner hood for the rest of your life.
Marriage can destroy people’s lives. Marriage can also provide an opportunity for healing on many levels. This is why the vows should read, “till expansion do us part” rather than “till death do us part”. Marriage is very unique in that we are exercising our personal choice to include someone else’s happiness in our own happiness. It may not be our responsibility to make someone else happy, but when we chose someone as a partner, their happiness is now a part of our happiness and so ensuring our happiness, means ensuring theirs. That is a beautiful choice to make. In the physical dimension, we live in a binary universe. This duality is a source of contrast. The unification of this duality is bliss. Marriage provides us the opportunity to live out a physical expression of this unification of dual aspects. But there is nothing wrong with those who choose not to get married any more than there is something wrong with those who chose to get married; provided that both decisions are made from a place of awareness.

The Cause of Obesity

When someone develops an excess of body weight, most especially in the form of fat, it is always done to cope with a fear. When it comes to obesity, that fear is the fear of humiliation and shame. At the heart of every single case of obesity is this particular fear. It is not a fear of something unknown; rather it is a fear of something known. Usually early in life, those of us with obesity experienced extreme demands and expectations from others. We could not meet those expectations and demands and so we experienced high levels of shame and as a result of those experiences, we spent our time feeling humiliated. We built up a barrier of fat as a shield between ourselves and what we were afraid of… others. We built a shield to prevent the painful demands and expectations of others. It is a physical reflection of the intention to prevent ourselves from being taken advantage of.
It is crucial that any of us that are struggling with obesity take a long look at what was expected of us by other people early in life. It is also crucial that any of us that are struggling with obesity, acknowledge the deep fear of shame and humiliation that is resident within us. Many people, who are obese, were raised in environments that condemned selfishness. This is especially ironic because the caregivers of those who grow up to be obese often preach this selfless approach to the world whilst simultaneously, selfishly expecting children to conform to their needs and expectations. As a result, those children simultaneously feel taken advantage of and ashamed for feeling taken advantage of. They learn that relationships with others are painful and so, they wall themselves off to people. But here’s the catch; in their households, it is not acceptable to wall themselves off emotionally by being cold or mean. The only acceptable behavior is niceness. So they have only one option, to wall themselves off physically.
Because people with obesity so often grow up in environments where it is expected that their focus is on the needs and expectations of others, many of them are completely out of touch with their wants and true desires. Indeed many people, who struggle with obesity, still operate under the false assumption that they will achieve love and achieve their desires through “nice-ness” and through taking responsibility for other people’s burdens.
For most people who struggle with obesity, receiving is an idea that is tied in with selfishness. They assume that to receive from someone, means to take from them and thus, to be a mean person. As a result, they can’t receive. But because they only feel comfortable with giving and not receiving, there is no flow of energy from others into their life. On a deep level, they fear being “used up” by others. This causes a secondary effect to the “shielding” intention fueling obesity. This secondary effect is called the “storing” effect. In other words, those of us with obesity, not only feel the need to shield ourselves from negative energy, but also to store energy. Fat reflects both of these intentions.
Recovery from obesity cannot be about reducing fat. The fat is just a symptom of underlying fears, intentions and misunderstandings. Those underlying non-physical causes are at the heart of obesity. The shame and humiliation that is at the very core of obesity, is a calling to find self-love and self worth. It is a calling to get in touch with the self. It provides the contrast necessary to cause a person to discover what they truly need and truly want. There is not one person who struggles with obesity, that did not come down to this life with the intention of discovering their true, unique selves; and then learning to value themselves enough to become that unique expression of their true selves. Fat is not your enemy. It is your friend. It is a friend that does not serve your highest good anymore. The unhealthy fat that is associated with obesity is nothing more than a barrier between ourselves and life. And when there is no longer a need for this barrier, there is no longer a need for the fat and so, it will cease to exist.

Disappointment

A great many of us on this earth expect disappointment in our lives. We live painful lives of constriction. And the restriction we suffer from is the restriction of joy. We do not let ourselves get our hopes up. In fact, we do not let ourselves feel positive emotion because feeling positive emotion makes us feel vulnerable to hurt. We feel a kind of familiar, safe comfort when we are feeling negative emotional states, like depression, because when we feel that way, we can be certain that there is no further to fall and so we will not experience the fall of disappointment. This is important to understand, if you are a person who thinks that depression or sadness feels real or that there is a kind of familiar, homey-ness and a settled trust in negative emotional states like depression and sadness, the reason is that you not only expect disappointment, but you are also are desperately afraid of disappointment. The only time we are guaranteed emotional safety, is when we are already feeling unhappy.
Those of us, who expect disappointment, panic when things are looking up. We are always looking for the negative in every situation so we don’t get blindsided by it. We experience love as a kind of nostalgia. We miss the object of our love before the object of our love is even gone. We feel the most powerless and desperate when things go well for us, because we live our lives according to the belief that the universe is out to get us and “the higher they rise, the harder they fall”.
Most of us who expect disappointment, experience ourselves as a disappointment. We experience ourselves this way because growing up, we felt as if we were a disappointment to our parents or teachers or some other authority figure. We are hyper critical of ourselves. Nothing we ever do is good enough to mean that we have worth and value. If things went well for us, it would mean that we are worthy of them going right for us; and we simply cannot believe that. We believe we are not worthy of positive treatment by the universe. We think we do not deserve things to work out for us. We think we do not deserve that big break or that perfect mate or that pay raise. We do not know why we deserve life to go badly for us, or what we did to deserve that pain. All we know is that we must deserve it because that is what we have become accustomed to getting. What’s even worse is that those of us who expect and fear disappointment, train ourselves to always expect the worst-case scenario so we never have to be disappointed. Mind creates reality, so in reality, this becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. But it is important to remember that if you are currently expecting disappointment or are helping someone who expects disappointment, the very worst thing you can do is to remind yourself or them that thinking this way does no good because it is a self-fulfilling prophecy. This will not help you or them to stop thinking this way. All this will do is add worry and shame on top of the feeling of impending disappointment.
If you expect disappointment, begin a list of times when you expected the worst-case scenario (which is the advanced version of expecting disappointment) and the worst-case scenario didn’t happen. Maybe we expected to be stood up on a date, but they just ended up being late because of a traffic jam. Maybe we expected someone to die, but they ended up recovering. Maybe we expected an opportunity to fall through that just took a little more time to come through. When you are looking at proof that disappointment does not always happen, your brain cannot attach to the expectation of disappointment with such fervor anymore.
The basic fear that lies beneath the surface of those who expect disappointment is the fear that powerlessness is the truth of our existence. This powerlessness stems from the belief that you do not create your own reality. The only people who fear disappointment are those who think that they do not ultimately have control over their lives. They think that life happens to them and that their experiences are determined by something larger and more powerful than them. The question is, what? Many of us who believe that we create our own reality do not carry this belief to our core, because the belief in our powerlessness runs even deeper and is a holdover from our childhood experience.
Here are some suggestions for transforming disappointment if you are currently dealing with a disappointment:
Let yourself feel and express that disappointment. Admit to it. Most of us are not adept at allowing ourselves to go through a process without trying to speed it up. This resistance to the feeling of disappointment keeps us stuck in disappointment. Let yourself express to others or/and into a journal how disappointed you feel and let yourself sink into and explore the sensations and emotions and feelings associated with that disappointment, without having to change it. You need to be genuinely ready to move forward in order to move forward and you can’t do that until you’ve faced the disappointment that you feel. You should never expect yourself to just get over it.
  Gain some outside perspective. Allow others to know how disappointed you feel. Involve them in your healing process. They just might have a way of looking at the situation that you never though of before. Getting a broader perspective is always helpful when our own perspective is limited (which it is when we are in pain). Keep in mind that this step cannot be done until you have allowed yourself to feel the feeling of being disappointed. Do not use other people’s perspectives to invalidate yourself by talking yourself out of allowing yourself to feel disappointed, only do it when you’re really ready to shift your perspectives.
  Don’t take it personally and don’t blame yourself. This step is easier said than done. But most of us make it personal when we experience disappointment. We begin to look for what we did wrong to deserve the pain. Insight about the experience can only come if you are not taking it personally. You aren’t going to learn anything if you’re beating yourself up, or shaming yourself, which is what self-blame is. It is important to understand that our experiences have nothing to do with deserving or not deserving, being good enough or not being good enough. It has to do with our thoughts and our true desires. The law of attraction is not a personal process. It responds by mirroring your vibration (which is dictated by your dominant thoughts) and your point of desire exactly. It is not selective about who or what it applies itself to. It is as impartial as gravity. It is not here to punish you.
  If something disappointing happens, look for or remain open to the possibility of a silver lining. You cannot completely exclude the possibility that it was in fact not what you have been asking for and something that is in fact what you have been asking for is right around the corner. Finding approval for something that disappointed us is the ultimate form of acceptance and acceptance is what enables us to move beyond the disappointment to something better. If we are thinking outside the box, it is possible to find something positive about every situation. One of the best exercises to counteract disappointment is to write a list of positive aspects about the disappointment in your positive aspects journal. Not only does this help to make you feel better about the situation, it prevents your mind from winding its way into a downward spiral.
  Practice non-attachment. It is possible to desire something while at the same time, not becoming attached to that certain outcome. Detachment is not the same thing as non-attachment. To detach is to emotionally defend yourself against pain. To practice non-attachment is to practice trust and allow the universe to deliver your desires to you in ways that you cannot even foresee yet. This process helps you to not limit yourself to one outcome. It is to recognize that your desires could come in completely unexpected ways and the more attached we are to a certain thing, the more we exclude other opportunities and possibilities that could be even better.
  Make a new plan. Disappointment provides an opportunity to re evaluate. When we are disappointed, often it is an indication to change something about our approach to getting what we want. What insight was gained from the disappointment? What needs to be done differently in the future? There is always something valuable to be learned from disappointment. But keep in mind, this is only valid if the thing you learn is empowering. If you are thinking “I learned that next time I need to just expect that I’m going to be disappointed”, you are not opening up to learning. You are closing off to pain. Remember that it is fine to switch horses mid stream or change course unexpectedly. Some of the biggest successes come on the heels of the biggest disappointments because those disappointments were jarring enough to cause people to make radical changes. Radical changes that really worked.
  Take note of the things that are going right for you right here and now. When we slip into disappointment, we begin to see our lives in terms of lack. The tease and loss of what we wanted has made us more aware of the absence of wanted things in our life. To counteract this tailspin, we can simply sit down and take note of all the things that we do want in our lives that are already part of our lives. What are you grateful for? What do you love about your life? What successes do you already have under your belt? What is good about your life? This will enable you to see the bigger picture. Don’t just think big. Think small too. If you enjoy your cup of coffee in the morning, that is something good that you have. The more good things you recognize that you have, the less absent your life will seem of things that are wanted; and the less deprived you will feel.
  Don’t take action. Take a break. Wait for the inspiration to come back to you before you take another step in the direction of what you have been wanting. We tend to be quite desperate after a big disappointment and taking action from a place of desperation is a really bad idea. You do not want to DO anything from a vibration of disappointment. And when you do begin again to go in the direction of what you want, think baby steps. Disappointment is a real blow to self-confidence. When you accomplish steps, your confidence will increase and you will find it easier to work up to positive expectation again and believe that what you want is meant to be yours.
  Be open to new opportunities. There is saying that I love regardless of its religious orientation. It goes like this, “When god closes a door, he opens a window.” It reflects a truth in this universe. Opportunities are everywhere. One opportunity cannot close without another opening. And so often, the new opportunity is way better than the last. Just because you feel disappointed today, does not mean that you should be. In fact, most of the time we are simply “taking inventory” too soon. We cannot yet see that what we have been asking for is right around the corner and that in years to come, we will be glad the thing we thought we wanted, didn’t come through.
  Never stop going in the direction of what you want. Never give up. Life is meaningless if it is not lived in the pursuit of happiness and passion. Disappointment is a ditch in the road to that happiness. If we let that ditch stop our progress completely, our life becomes meaningless. A life that is full of nothing but an endless chain of disappointment is still a million times better than a meaningless life. Anyone who has given up on their dreams can tell you this. Expansion can only happen if we actually achieve desires, otherwise we are atrophied where we are. We have no new platform from which to expand and that does not benefit the universe at all. The universe only experiences expansion when you have a new platform of perspective based on having lined up with and lived out your desires. This means, you are not meant to come here to be disappointed and the universe doesn’t want you to be disappointed because being disappointed does not serve the universe’s best interests. You are meant to experience every single thing you want to experience in your lifetime. Disappointment can and will only ever be temporary.

Introversion vs. Extroversion

Introversion and extroversion are considered core aspects of personality. The concept of introversion and extroversion was pioneered by the legendary psychologist Carl Jung. In general, extroverted people are energized by social interaction whereas those same social interactions are perceived as taxing for introverts. After attending a social gathering, introverts need time to “recharge”.
The western world is a difficult place for an introvert because extroversion is seen as a desirable trait and introversion is not. In general, extroverts are outspoken, have great need for more stimulating environments, are outgoing and predominantly conserved with what is going on in the outer world. Introverts by contrast are reflective, have great need for less stimulating environments, are quiet and are predominantly concerned with what is going on in their own inner world. Ambiverts are exactly in the middle, exhibiting an even mix of extroversion and introversion. It is important to note that no one on earth is entirely an introvert or entirely an extrovert. To be entirely one way or the other would mean a person was unable to function in the world. Both would essentially be institutionalized. So we are looking more at dominant tendencies when we are observing this quality within a personality structure.
As a medical intuitive, when I am observing introverts and extroverts side by side, what sets them apart from each other is brain activity; specifically in the cerebral cortex. Introverts have much more activity in their cerebral cortex than extroverts. They are affected by external stimuli much quicker and much more intensely. What does this mean? It means that introverts are much more sensitive than extroverts are to stimulation, so they can take very little of it before they become over stimulated and overwhelmed. It is best to think of their nervous systems as highly sensitive instruments. Their nervous system is actually taking in and processing much more information from the external environment than the nervous system of an extrovert. Conversely, extroverts are much less sensitive to external stimulation. They are not processing as much information and this causes them to seek information and stimulation. In the world of psychology, this difference I have observed is called cortical arousal. Introverts tend to have high cortical arousal and extroverts tend to have low cortical arousal. Blood flow to the brain is also different in introverts and extroverts. Specifically, the blood flow is prioritized in different areas of the brain in extroverts and introverts.
On an energetic level, this seeking out vs. taking in is the key energy that sets introverts and extroverts apart. The introvert is bombarded by life itself and thus spends his or her time taking in and processing that flood of incoming information and stimuli. The extrovert feels absent of life itself and thus spends his or her time seeking out and initiating situations in which they can feel alive through interaction with stimulus and information. Also, those that are introverted tend to have dominant upper (spiritual) chakras whereas those that are extroverted tend to have dominant lower (physical) chakras.
There are ups and downs to extroversion and introversion. For example, the introvert tends to have less trust than the extrovert. The extrovert often has less self-awareness. The introvert usually has a higher intellect and is more perceptive. The extrovert is generally happier with physical life and has more self-esteem than the introvert. Introverts get their energy from within. Extroverts get their energy from without. Ideally of course, this tendency would be balanced.
There are too many factors that come together to create an extrovert or an introvert to list here. Both nature and nurture play a major role in whether you are introverted or extroverted. As always, there is a light side and a shadow side to extreme ways of being. A person, who is extroverted, may genuinely seek the good feelings of social connection, which is in alignment or they may seek social interactions to avoid facing themselves and their true feelings. Conversely, a person, who is introverted, may genuinely revel in the awareness of their own inner self and true feelings, which is in alignment or they may seek solitude to avoid the vulnerable feeling of intimacy with others. As always, this is why introverts and extroverts tend to attract each other. The introvert reflects the avoidant shadows of the extrovert and the extrovert reflects the avoidant shadows of the introvert, causing each to face and heal the resistance that is causing such an imbalance in their way of being.
We came to this dimension to interact with the physical dimension (an extroverted trait); because this dimension is a learning hologram. We chose to do so in order to come to greater levels of self-awareness (an introverted trait). This means, both extroversion and introversion are an essential part of learning. An imbalance to one side or the other, suggests that a person has developed resistance to part of this equation. One of the most crucial parts of living an “in alignment” life is to not forgo the opportunity to grow by justifying your behavior one way or another, but by instead looking for the shadows that may be causing your tendency towards one extreme or the other. For example, you could ask yourself “why do I need social interaction or why do I avoid social interaction”.
Some professionals would have you believe that introversion or extroversion is a core fundamental of human personality and that introversion or extroversion is just simply who you are. This is not accurate. No person is born entirely one way or another. Each person has both the tendency for extroversion and introversion present within them. From an energetic perspective, neither extreme is “in alignment”, therefore part of what you came here to do is to come more into alignment relative to your orientation. This means, rather than just accept that you are a loner or a social addict and then defend the value of either extreme, it is crucial to fully explore the reasons that could have caused you to swing one way or another. Pre birth intention as well as your gestational experiences plays into the tendency to be either extroverted or introverted. But the choice to come into a life where you would have one tendency over another tendency, is yet another bit of contrast and perspective that you saw as an opportunity to aid your own expansion. Don’t worry a lot about those factors. It’s more important to try to identify and change the negative beliefs that you currently have, which could be fueling either extremity. You never know who you truly are, until you face those shadows and release the resistance you are currently harboring. In fact, you don’t really know if you’re introverted or extroverted until you release the resistance you are currently harboring that could potentially be to blame for making you shift to one extreme or another.
Extroversion and Introversion are not fixed personality traits. People can and often do override this tendency in pursuit of their truest desires. If you currently disapprove of being one way or another (which is a common problem for introverts), first you need to try to find thoughts that cause you to approve of that way of being. Then, after you’ve found approval for being an introvert or an extrovert, keep what serves you and discard what does not. There is no right or wrong. Discover what truly makes you happy. If it serves you and you are honestly happy being an introvert, remain that way. If it serves you and you are honestly happy being an extrovert, remain that way. If not, take steps to come into a greater place of balance. Part of the truth that we came here to recognize is the oneness inherent in all aspects of our universe. When we recognize oneness, we see that external is merely a reflection of internal, and internal is merely a reflection of external. An extreme orientation either internally or externally, suggests that we do not yet see this truth. Both internal and external are aspects of the same energy, so we can and would benefit by tapping into both sources of energy equally.

Cannabis and Spirituality (Is Pot a Beneficial Spiritual Drug?)

Pot, otherwise known as cannabis or marijuana, is considered a spiritual medicine and has been used as such since 2000 BC because it is a psychoactive drug. Pot is considered psychoactive because it can alter one’s state of consciousness. Altering one’s consciousness helps them to break free of illusion and the restriction of limited perception.
All plants possess unique energetic frequencies and those frequencies can teach a new way of thinking and being. Cannabis teaches about a great many things including: The path of least resistance, oneness, surrender, release, letting go, present moment, “Livity”, communion, allowing, the impermanence and illusion of the physical dimension, the frailness of boundaries, inhibition, the unhealthiness of control, the fear that lies behind the bold, confident mask of the ego and effortless being.
People react very differently to cannabis; this is because the vibratory rate of the plant is in fact what is altering people’s state of consciousness. An individual human holds a unique vibration. When a person interacts with cannabis, the vibratory rate of that individual has to change in order to match the frequency of the cannabis in order to stay a match to sharing a reality where both the plant and the person coexist. In shamanic tradition, these psychoactive plants (including cannabis) were seen as gatekeepers or tunnel guardians between realms. This matching of frequencies or resonating between person and plant is called “friending”. Friending the plant, allows you to pass between realms. This resonance effect drastically increases when the medicine is ingested. The vibrational resonance causes a cascade of physiological reactions occur, most especially the inhibition of neurotransmitters. It inhibits the brain from functioning at normal capacity. This provides a great deal of relief to many people, who are bombarded by their own resistant thoughts. The brain is a transceiver of information that is designed to create the illusion of a static 3-D dimension for the purpose of learning. The physical dimension is a learning hologram. When the transceiver is affected or inhibited by certain drugs, the illusion of the physical dimension begins to dismantle and a person can feel or see beyond this dimension into other dimensions and realities. When the transceiver is incapacitated, a person is enables to allow more of his or her own pure being to be fully present and unrestricted. But people react differently to the plant. The question is…why?
A person reacts differently to cannabis for two main reasons.
Because people have different vibratory rates. Your enjoyment of cannabis, or lack there of, is directly related to whether the plant holds a higher vibration than you do, or whether you hold a higher vibration than it does. If the plant holds a higher vibration than you do, you are most likely going to experience a sense of calm euphoria and a dramatic reduction of pain in your body. If your vibratory rate is higher, you will most likely experience paranoia and other unwanted side effects from the medicine.
  Because cannabis is extremely responsive to intention. It enhances the truth of this reality, which is that intention directs energy and intention creates your experience. If you set an intention for what you want cannabis to help you do, it will have that effect. If you do not, it will respond according to the intention of your subconscious. This means if your subconscious wants you to know about something that is plaguing it, or if your subconscious fears the loss of personal boundaries, taking cannabis will enable your subconscious to fulfill it’s intention and you will come face to face with your fears. The number one benefit of cannabis is that it helps people to release resistance. By affecting the brain like it does, it inhibits the brain from focusing on and translating the resistant, stressful thoughts that cause a negative emotional response within the body. This is why it is so effective at reducing stress. And this is also why it is so effective for the use of pain management. Pain is a symptom of resistance. By causing a person to release resistance and “flow downstream with life” a person is free to be who they really are. More of their true essence is present in the absence of resistance and this is why people often undergo such intense spiritual experiences while under the influence of cannabis. But this is also why it is used recreationally.
As a spiritual teacher, I cannot fully support nor fully condemn a spiritual medicinal such as cannabis because the issue of using vs. not using these medicines is not black and white. It is a case-by-case scenario. And, all beings, including plants are teachers. If a person tries to escape their resistance by using a tool like cannabis, they have learned nothing but to be dependent on the tool. They may have increased their awareness of what is beyond this dimension, but they have not learned anything about how to access states of consciousness beyond the 3-D consciousness on their own, without the use of an external substance/tool. In essence, they have become powerlessly dependent. This is in fact the number one reason that I do not overtly support the use of spiritual drugs. While these medicines are often life changing because they can serve to crack through the illusion of the physical dimension so a person can peer beyond the illusion, they all too often become a person’s only way of transitioning their consciousness into a “more spiritual” state. They then become a crutch that disables a person from reaching those states organically. The feeling state created by these medicines becomes an addiction and the more subtle transition of increasing one’s vibration and altering one’s focus so as to facilitate an organic shift in consciousness, no longed registers as a “special and noteworthy experience” when compared with the intensity of the radical break from reality, caused by the medicines. So often the drug itself becomes the person’s only access to spirituality. The drug itself becomes the religion.
Pot is an addictive substance. A living being will become addicted to anything they feel dependent on to achieve a certain feeling state. When a person feels as if feeling good or greater awareness is dependent upon cannabis, they will become addicted to cannabis. And to become addicted to cannabis, is to shortcut your own expansion. Stress and resistance exists for a reason, to teach you about yourself and to fuel you in the direction of your own expansion. When you feel resistance creeping up in your consciousness, there is always an aspect of yourself that needs to be examined and shifted; and there is always something new that is being desired. If you escape from that feeling by using cannabis, you will forgo the opportunity to examine and shift the root of that resistance. What’s more than that, when the effects of the drug wear off, you are right back to where you were, having improved nothing in the long term. In this way, cannabis prevents learning. Also, with a decrease in resistance, you will simultaneously experience a decrease in desire. This decrease in desire causes a decrease in the dopamine levels in your brain. Dopamine is responsible for the motivation response within your body. This is why motivation dissipates and apathy increases when someone uses pot often. Desire is the basis of expansion. With decreased desire, there is decreased expansion, so it must be said that chronic pot use thwarts both personal and universal expansion. This is why I am not a person who advocates recreational drug use of any kind. It is a better idea that a person change their life for the better (so they no longer feel the desire or need to escape from their life) than to escape from their life by using cannabis or any other drug for that matter. However, there is an exception to this rule.
We create our own reality. And when it comes to chronic pain, or chronic worry, there is an interesting thing that occurs. Certain kinds of pain and worry inhibit focus and especially positive focus to such a degree that a person cannot learn and cannot get out of the downward spiral of negative reality creation. In such a case, resistance incapacitates a person. If a person is incapacitated by resistance, (which is the case when chronic illness has caused chronic pain to occur), cannabis may in fact be the very best tool that a person can use to enable themselves to distract themselves from the pain, thereby releasing enough resistance to come back into a state of alignment. When this is the case, a person’s vibration is so low that cannabis is able to help a person to release enough resistance to enable them to face and explore their own resistance and therefore shift. But cannabis should never be treated as a long-term solution to resistance. We need to find the root of our resistance and pull up that root if we want a long-term solution to resistance.
At this point in history, a major debate rages over the legalization of pot. Some people think that pot is a gateway drug, which puts youth at risk for harder drug use. Others think it is wrong to condone any drug. They argue that by legalizing a drug, we are essentially condoning the drug. I’ve been asked my opinion on the legalization of pot many times and so I have decided to put forth my answer. I support the legalization of pot. In my opinion, making something illegal fuels the use of a substance more so than making it legal does. The number one addiction for mankind is not a specific substance; it is the sensation of freedom. When we break the rules by doing illegal things, we get to rebel and therefore feel freer. Prohibition never did anything to restrict the use or sale of illegal substances. It simply made the trade more life threatening for both sellers and users. In my opinion, governments have no place determining what is right vs. what is not right when they have demonstrated their overt inability to make such decisions, as is proof by the fact that the government thinks it is right to go to war. In my opinion, people can and should be trusted to do what is right for themselves and learn from the consequences of their own actions rather than be controlled by external forces, including the government. Not to mention the fact that he government should have much better things to do with their time than prosecute people for trying to find relief (which is what people are doing when they are using drugs). Legalizing marijuana would reduce our smuggling problem, thus reducing the flow of American money into international criminal markets. In my opinion, even though it is a moneymaking business to fine people for illegal drug use, the government is missing a major opportunity to make even more money for the country by not legalizing cannabis. If they legalized and taxed cannabis, they might not have to shut down so many beneficial government programs due to their embarrassing financial mistakes. And lastly, rules in general prohibit people from listening to their own emotional guidance system and so they prohibit people from discovering right and wrong within themselves and because of this, they disallow people from experiencing an organic sense of morality and camaraderie. It is a sad day when an external government replaces internal self-governing.
Cannabis should be seen as what it is, a tool. It is a tool that is not necessary to spiritual awareness or practice. It is a tool that can help enhance spiritual awareness. It is a tool that should never be a substitute for organic spiritual awareness and practice.

Viewing The World Through The Eyes Of The Inner Artist

Love is perhaps the highest defined vibration in the universe; but what is love? Love is the state of pure positive focus. When we are currently focusing positively towards something, we are in a state of love. Everything in existence is an extension or expression of source energy. Art is essentially an expression. Because all things in existence are expressions, all things in existence are art. As an extension of source, you are imbued with the ability to create. Every being in existence is therefore at their core an artist.
We are all artists. An artist celebrates beauty. An artist recognizes beauty even in things that would be unanimously considered “ugly”. An artist can recognize what is poignant about even the most mundane things. Beauty is defined as a characteristic that provides the perceptual experience of pleasure. And we can train ourselves to see beauty in everything. We can view this earth through the eyes of our inner artist. This one of the most essential spiritual practices of all. When we practice seeing the world through the eyes of the inner artist, the entire world transforms itself into a work of art. The movements of a crowd of people, which once seemed erratic, begin to seem like a dance. The person, who once seemed obnoxious, becomes a bell of mindfulness that brings us back to the present moment. You can use this process in your every day life to enhance your enjoyment. You can use it to amplify your feelings of joy and gratitude, you can use it to find appreciation for mundane things and you can especially use it to eradicate resistance from your being. For example, when you feel resistance arise within you because you are observing something that is unwanted and you feel negative emotion towards something, try to look at that thing through the eyes of the inner artist. Act as if you are on a treasure hunt for the beauty within that thing you have resistance towards. This practice works towards everything including events, people, feelings, objects, circumstances, sounds etc. It is perhaps the very best tool to use when you are visually observing something you have resistance to. To demonstrate how this process works, I’ll give you a personal example. One day, a man walked by me and flicked his used cigarette butt on the sidewalk below my feet. At first I was revolted. To me, it was proof that the world was disgustingly forsaken. But having committed myself to the practice of non-resistance, I reminded myself that the feeling of resistance within me was a call to ripen my perception. And so, I made myself watch the cigarette butt for a full hour. It took fifteen minutes to get past my resistance, but once those fifteen minutes past by, a greater truth was revealed to me. That greater truth was beauty. It was like a whole other world had been revealed to me, a whole other possibility of perception. I watched this object, which is unanimously considered ugly, but ugliness is no longer what I saw. I watched it floating in the breeze, back and forth across the sidewalk. I watched it as it was crushed again and again, under the heels of many a tennis shoe; leaving little sprays of burnt tobacco on the cold cement. I realized that disguised beneath the generally assumed ugliness of this piece of garbage, was the lesson of allowing. The cigarette butt was completely absent of resistance. It did not resist the dominance of the wind. It did not resist the crush of the shoe. It had given its life in service. The purpose of it’s existence was to offer someone a moment of relief. And suddenly, I treasured the cigarette butt that once I had been so repulsed by.
Before you make the judgment that a practice like this last one, glorifies litter, remind yourself that this practice is not about condoning something or not; it is not about right or wrong. It is simply a practice that facilitates the state of non-resistance within you.
People make an inaccurate assumption and that is: we must be horrified or repulsed to take action or to do what is “right”. We attach ourselves very strongly to our resistance because we are convinced that resistance will keep us on the path of righteousness. This is inaccurate. For example, we do not have to be horrified into a state of resistance in order to take action to prevent child abuse. We can instead take action to enable children to live safe, free, healthy lives from a place of inspiration. We do not have to hate cigarette butts to pick litter up off of the floor. We can love a clutter free world to pick litter up off of the floor. And this is a very important distinction to make. All having resistance to something does, is lend energy directly to that thing that is unwanted. All resistance does, is rot you from within.
Resistance is an affliction. It is an affliction that gives way to a deep sense of inner peace and happiness when we begin to live our lives through the eyes of the inner artist. But do not wait to feel resistance to practice this way of seeing the world. Use it to enhance the experience you’re already having by trying to see even more beauty in everything, including things you’re already enjoying and mundane things like the light streaming through a window or the way someone smiles or a mundane object. For example, a pen is a mundane object. We take pens for granted because they are a part of our every day life. But take a closer look at a pen and you see the craftsmanship of the ballpoint, the beautiful richness of the ink, the geometry of the shaft, the hours donated to its creation by the designer, the way that it lets us communicate symbols of meaning with one another and the way it helps us to preserve fleeting ideas.
To see the world with the kind of clarity that belongs to the inner artist, and to see the world with the eyes of truth, is to look at the world through the eyes of our true self. Our true self does not recognize ugliness. It recognizes only beauty, beauty even in the rotting and deformed and afflicted. We are in pain when we recognize something as ugly, because in that moment, we have deviated so very far from our true selves. The moments that we feel the most resistant to something we are seeing, are in fact the very moments that offer an opportunity to see clearer. They are a calling to recognize a deeper truth, the truth of beauty, the truth of beauty in every single thing.

Tired of All The Drama?

Drama is a word that originally meant, “to act”. This is why the word made its debut in the world of performance art or theatre. As it relates to emotional life, drama is a state, situation, or series of events involving intense conflict. Put these two things together and you have the definition of a person who is dramatic. A person who is dramatic is a person who acts as if they are in a state of intense conflict. There is a perception that a person who is dramatic or who is a drama queen, is either over-reacting or is acting for the sake of attention, much like a performer on stage. A drama queen acts as if things are much worse than you think they actually are. Because of this, there is stigma associated with drama. You will often hear people say “I’m done with all the drama” or “he or she is addicted to drama” or “he or she is a drama queen.” So, lets get this out of the way right off the bat… When it applies to the human emotional experience, there is no such thing as drama. And when you make the judgment that someone is creating drama or is a drama queen or is being dramatic, you minimize and shame them for their feelings, which I assure you are very real.
No one overreacts. There has never been a person on earth that has ever overreacted. People react exactly in accordance with the reality that they alone perceiving. And our perspective and realities are not the same. For example, let’s pretend that you are married and that you have the tendency of forgetting to wear your wedding ring. Lets say you left it on the counter after you got out of the shower and forgot to put it back on. Lets pretend that your spouse gets really upset about it and spends the next twenty minutes straight vacillating between crying and yelling at you about it. You may look at your spouse and think, “this person is really dramatic”. After all, you still love them and it is just a ring. All you did was forget to put it back on. Your perspective is that your spouse is either acting for the sake of attention or is overreacting and thinking the situation is worse than it actually is. But lets jump into your spouse’s perspective for a minute. Let’s pretend that your spouse is attached to wedding rings as a visual symbol of love. When you forget your wedding ring, their reality looks like this: My partner has forgotten me or doesn’t love me. This can be compounded if negative memories are involved. Let’s pretend that your spouse was married once before and one day they came home to an empty house with their x spouse’s wedding band sitting on the counter top after they left for good. They now associate a wedding ring left on the counter with being left. So the only reason they seem dramatic is because you do not recognize that right at this moment, you are living in two different realities. You are living in a reality where you forgot to put on a piece of jewelry because you took a shower. They are living in a reality where you don’t love them anymore and are going to leave them. Does their reaction seem so dramatic anymore? No… it seems perfectly called for. You’d most likely react the same exact way if you thought you were unloved and going to be left by your spouse. When we think someone is being dramatic, we have a habit of telling them to be reasonable or to take a reality check. But to ask someone to be reasonable or “look at reality” is to ask them to conform their perspective to your perspective. It is true that sometimes offering them your perspective will help them to feel better. But it doesn’t mean that your perspective or your grasp on reality is correct. When it comes to perspective, truth is subjective.
When someone is acting as if a situation is worse than you think it actually is, that means the situation they are imagining is worse than the situation that you are imagining. Another way of saying this is, the meaning they have added to a situation is more painful than the meaning you have added to the situation. Everyone acts perfectly in accordance with the reality that they are perceiving. In all actuality, a person who is being "dramatic, is currently interracting with a reflection of past trauma that they have experienced and are now projecting onto the current situation. Once you realize that, you will no longer have the resistance you have to the ways that other people act. You will stop minimizing and invalidating their feelings. You will stop shaming them for feeling the way they feel, it will no longer seem like people are overreacting and you wont take their behavior so personally.
People who say “I don’t want anymore drama in my life” usually mean they are sick of the dramatic people in their life or they are sick of the conflict that they have with other people in their life. But drama isn’t about other people, it’s about ourselves. If I experience conflict with other people, I have conflict within myself. I am at war with me. If you are surrounded by drama, you will not be able to take an action step to cut all the drama out of your life because you are the one attracting it. If you cut dramatic people out of your life, more dramatic people will fill their place. What’s more than that, you’re failing to see that you have a way of thinking that attracts conflict into your life. If you are “done with all the drama” or find that you continually end up surrounded in drama and surrounded by dramatic people, here are some questions to ask yourself… Am I a chronic worrier? Do I tend to go to the worst-case scenario? Do I secretly love dramatic situations and therefore want it because I usually feel numb and drama causes me feel something? Do I secretly love dramatic people because being near them helps me to feel more sane, stable and rational? Do I have the tendency to become bored, so I attract drama to entertain myself? Did I grow up around emotionally unstable people and experience conflict as love? If this is the case, has it caused me to expect it in others and only recognizing love when there is conflict? Is there an internal conflict in me, which causes me to feel emotionally unstable, that I am unwilling to admit to or look at and so it keeps mirroring itself through my relationships? Am I unwilling to validate and admit to my own feelings, so not only do they have to mirror themselves through other people, but I treat others like I treat myself by invalidating their emotions?
We need to release our resistance to drama and find a way to approve of it if we are to reduce the amount of drama that we have in our lives. Drama is not a bad thing. It is contrast. Those who have the most drama in their lives have the most contrast and therefore expansion in their lives. No one deserves to have their feelings invalidated by being told that they are being dramatic. Most likely if you invalidate other people’s feelings by telling them that they are being dramatic, you have learned over the course of your life to invalidate your own feelings. You impose this expectation on others as a result of it. Even though you wish you didn’t feel how you really feel, it is time to admit to how you truly feel and not be ashamed of how you really feel. Feeling deep levels of shame for feeling the way you feel is the real reason that you want to deny and invalidate the way you feel. It is also what is causing you to invalidate how other people feel by making the judgment that they are dramatic. If you have a resistance to drama, it is crucial to remind yourself that no one overreacts, including you. You always act in perfect accordance with the reality that you are perceiving.

Be Open

You came to this life as an extension and expression of source consciousness in the physical dimension. Because of this, it could easily be said that you are a creation or an art piece of God’s. But as an extension of god, you are god. So, you are both the creator and the created. And neither creator nor creation is meant to be suppressed. When you live in a state of openness, you are allowing the art piece of you, to be painted across this world. You are not restricting yourself. You are also not restricting Source itself. Because of this, it is by far the more “in alignment” way to be. And it can easily be said that walking the spiritual path, is walking the path of complete openness. When a child is born, the child has no thoughts of suppressing itself. The child has no secrets from the world. The child does not seclude itself or exclude people from its heart. The child is honest. The child is like this because it is the most natural way to be. The child follows it’s emotional guidance system up until the point where it is taught not to, and when you follow your emotional guidance system, what you find is that the state of constriction is painful and therefore, it is not natural. What you find is that the state of openness feels emotionally good and therefore, it is our natural state. We can think of constriction as the opposite of openness. But a whole range of things fall under the category of constriction. We are constricted when we keep secrets. We are constricted when we “tone ourselves down” in order to be accepted by others. We are constricted when we do things we do not want to do. We are constricted when we close our minds and are no longer open to new ideas and new possibilities of truth. We are constricted when we are not honest. We are constricted when we do not share. We are constricted when we isolate ourselves, we are constricted when we see love in terms of finite quantity and so we reserve it for only some people and not others. We are constricted when we do not allow ourselves to admit to and go after our needs and our wants. We are constricted when we do not express our emotions. We are constricted when we try to fit ourselves into a life dictated by society, instead of carving out a life to fit ourselves. These are just a few examples of thousands of examples of constriction. To live in a state of constriction, is to not let the light of your being shine through your life. A person cannot live like that for long. In fact, living in any way that is constrictive, gives rise to illness quickly. First, your emotions will suffer. Your life will cease to be enjoyable. Then, your body will suffer. The part of the body that perhaps suffers the most from constriction is the heart and lungs. Many of the heart and breathing problems that we experience, are ultimately the result of restricting the self. But constriction can also give rise to a whole host of other ailments such as, stomach disorders, acne, allergies, eating disorders, arthritis, baldness, blood pressure problems, bowel problems, yeast infections, varicose veins, cancers and tumors, speech problems, prostate problems, ovarian problems, and joint problems to name a few.
At some point in our lives, we begin to think that there are consequences for being ourselves and that there are consequences for being open. We begin to fear exposure. We start to feel like victims and the only power we feel we possess, is the power called “self containment”. We feel powerless to just about everything in our lives except for our own choice to hide or expose ourselves. We chose to hide ourselves instead of expose ourselves and sometimes we hide ourselves from ourselves. Doing this allows us to exercise our own sense of free will and it helps us to feel like we are not powerless victims. But it is a decision that will kill us in the end. You came to this earth with the intention of becoming the full expression of your true self, unrestricted. You came here specifically to expose all of yourself. To contain yourself and not expose yourself is to defy and deny the purpose for your life. And so, we must learn to exercise our free will by choosing to expose ourselves and be open instead. When we keep secrets, we feel powerful instead of powerless. But to be secretive is to be exclusionary in a universe that is more than all-inclusive; it is a universe that is ONE. Your secrets do not actually belong to you in a universe that is all one. Your life is everyone’s life. Your stories are everyone’s stories. Your pain is everyone’s pain; your joy is everyone’s joy. To be exclusive, is to go against the flow of this universe that we live in. When we are not open, and honest and do not share, it makes us feel safe instead of unsafe. People think they are safe when they are invisible. But to live your life at the mercy of fear is no kind of life. It is a half-life. We may find that we fear what others will think of us or we may fear that what we tell others will be used against us. But if you were comfortable with being yourself fully, you would not care what they think about you. It would not be possible to be embarrassed if you had not first been indoctrinated with the idea that there is a good way to be and a bad way to be. People, who fear exposing themselves, without exception, were raised in environments where there was a heavy atmosphere of shame. It would be impossible to be embarrassed if you had not first become ashamed of yourself. And a person only becomes ashamed of himself or herself if someone gives them the idea that they should be. As our spiritual practice progresses, we become more aware that anything other people could do to us as a result of us being open is not as bad as the pain and consequence of constriction we impose on ourselves.
There is an old Chinese poem that explains that only a person, who resists the arrow, can be pierced by the arrow. But if one becomes like water, in a state of total openness and non-resistance, the arrow cannot injure them. It would be absorbed into the expanse of them. To live in a state of constriction, especially when we live a secretive life that is closed to others, is to resist the arrow and thus, to become a match to being pierced by it. If we are completely open, we give all of our ammunition away, and by doing so, it cannot be used on us. We become too expansive for other people to make a dent in us.
Some people feel as if being open and sharing themselves with the world completely, is a tasteless form of public exhibitionism and deeper than that, it is a form of narcissism. This is a profoundly out of alignment point of view from source perspective seeing as how, you came to this planet in the first place to uniquely express yourself fully. The only way we can achieve self-awareness, is if we are open with ourselves and if we open ourselves to the world.
What’s more than that, our only way to learn from one another is to express ourselves. People who hold this belief, were raised in environments where the only socially acceptable way of being was conformity to a social ideal. Social etiquette often calls for extreme measures of self-constriction. But we need to understand that if we have an idea of how someone should behave, we are letting our standards be dictated by someone who came before us. Someone who had power over others and who decided that if others behaved in a certain way, it would make them feel happier. It is a form of social control that we have bought into and that we now reinforce. We need to ask ourselves, who decided what was tasteful and what was tasteless? And why? Why is public exhibitionism not ok, especially in a universe where we came into physical life specifically to be the unrestricted expression of our true selves? Why should we act in a certain way? And who decides what that certain acceptable way to act is?
The idea that sharing oneself completely is a form of narcissism is especially sad. You came into this life as one person, and that is you. In physical life, you are restricted to that one perspective. And the only relationship that is guaranteed for the rest of your life is your relationship with yourself. You will be with you until your dying day. This means, you are the love of your life. Most of us just don’t know it yet. The idea that it is virtuous to forget yourself and that it is selfish to care about yourself and to think highly enough of yourself enough to be driven to show yourself off to others, is an idea that is not backed by source itself. It is an idea that was imposed on us by other people who believed in the virtue of selflessness and who rejected us for who we were. These people believed in humility. A kind of humility called lethal humility. They spent a good deal of time trying to make us believe that to be selfish was to be bad and that to be bad was to not deserve love. So our only way to get love was to deny ourselves and restrict ourselves and to become constricted.
The bottom line is, to live a life that is in alignment; that enables us to stay emotionally and physically healthy and to love ourselves, openness is the order of the day. We have a choice at all moments of the day; the choice is to be open or to be closed. This is why one of the most beneficial exercises you can do is to ask yourself throughout the day “how am I being closed right now? How am I constricting myself or letting myself be constricted?” and make the necessary changes in favor of openness based on the answer you receive. A state of openness is the real state of freedom. Everything we do is a creative expression of our inner selves. To be constricted in any way, is to prevent the energy of our being from flowing through our bodies and into our lives. If we are committed to the spiritual path, we must commit ourselves to the state of openness.

A Message For The Bleeding Hearts

When we look at something across the world that causes suffering or when we look at something in someone else’s life that causes them to suffer, we feel powerless. Being empathetic, we want desperately to do something to improve the situation. But we don’t know how. This is even more true when the suffering is causes by a large conflict, such as a war. We get to a point where we feel utterly powerless to all the suffering in the world. But what are we going to honestly do? Are we going to get on a plane, fly to the country where the war is taking place, get off the plane, walk right into these killing zones and try to talk terrorists or soldiers into stopping the bloodshed? Some of us might be inspired to do that, but for most of us, we know the answer to that question is no. As a result, we are paralyzed to improve anything. We begin to feel if the world is forsaken.
The most crucial thing for a bleeding heart to understand is that we will never feel good about the world we live in, or about ourselves until we stop addressing suffering in terms of specific, isolated incidents. We will only reduce suffering if we treat suffering on this planet as a whole. We can only make an impact on suffering if we feel empowered instead of powerless. We can only make an impact if we believe we can make an impact. If you want to believe you can make an impact; and what’s more, if you want to start actually making an impact, look at suffering only as a whole instead of in parts. Instead of focusing on that one war that you feel like you can’t do anything about, focus suffering in and of itself or at least on collective human suffering. Look at the big picture of suffering (which is something we can have a direct, tangible impact on) instead of focusing on isolated incidents that cause suffering (which we often feel removed from to the degree that we feel we cannot have a direct tangible effect on them). We, bleeding hearts of the world, need to take a vow to reduce collective suffering by adding to collective wellbeing every day in the ways that we CAN add to collective wellbeing. How do we reduce suffering by adding to wellbeing? There are an unlimited number of ways. But here are some examples: Eat a plant based diet, open the door for a stranger, smile more, pick up litter, help someone reach a goal, compliment someone, give someone a gift, give someone a hug, spend quality time with someone, adopt a homeless pet, inspire others, quit killing the bugs in your house and set them free outside instead, stop using pesticides, encourage someone, donate money, and look for and create beauty in the world. There is an enormous difference between focusing on and resisting the problems and focusing on and going in the direction of a solution. You will know you are focusing on the solution when you feel emotionally empowered. You will know you are focusing on the problem if you feel emotionally in pain. When you look at suffering as a whole, you will soon realize that your suffering is a part of that collective suffering. It will then become apparent that the most important thing we could do to reduce suffering in the world is to reduce our own suffering as individuals. You are contributing to world suffering when you suffer as a result of focusing on the suffering of others. Because of this, it can easily be said that the single most important thing you will ever do for world suffering, is to do whatever it takes to enable yourself to be happy.

Narcissism

Narcissism finds its roots in Greek mythology. Narcissus was a man who fell in love with his own image when it was reflected in a pool of water. In today’s terms, narcissism means to derive gratification from vanity or egotistical admiration of one’s own attributes. It is seen as a form of self-defeating pride. But I, for one completely disagree with this view of narcissism. There is nothing innately wrong with a Narcissus. Adoring one’s own reflection, deriving gratification from admiring oneself is in fact healthy. It is much healthier than being critical of oneself or striving to be self less (which is actually not possible). But our culture, which has been heavily influenced for thousands of years by biblical Christianity, recognizes self-love as vanity and ultimately as pride, which is one of the original seven sins. And so, sadly, narcissus has become the poster child not only for self-love, but also for pride. As a result, we confuse self-love with selfishness, when they are drastically different things.
The most important thing when it comes to understanding narcissism is to first separate self-love from selfishness in our minds. Most people think that narcissism is an extreme form of self-love. It is not. In fact, narcissism has nothing to do with self-love. It has to do with someone who perceives an extreme lack of self-sustaining resources, like love.
Self-love is defined as deep devotion or affection for yourself. You committed to your own identity upon coming into this life. In the end, the only person who will always be there for you is you. So you should be your number one priority. Selfishness is defined as concern only for ones own welfare, benefit and interests regardless of the impact on others. Selfishness is not a natural state. It only occurs when a person is focused on and convinced of the lack in their life. We often confuse self-love and selfishness. But there is a big difference between the two. Selfishness, is created when a person who does not know how to love themselves and meet their own needs, feels that internal deprivation and then spends their lives trying to fill in that hole externally. It is very uncomfortable to spend time around a selfish individual because it will constantly feel as if that person is taking and taking from you. They do not know how to get or create what they want without taking it from someone else. They do not know how to love themselves, so their life depends on getting you to give them those things. If you don’t, they are at a loss of what to do, they feel powerless and they get angry because they are scared. But when we take a step back, compassion will show us that they come from a space of internal starvation. Expecting them not to jump at the opportunity to take what they are starving for is like expecting a starving child to not steal food. People who are considered selfish such as the narcissist and people who are considered self less such as those who self sacrifice, are both coming from the same mentality of lack. That is why they seem to always find each other; they are a perfect vibrational match. They see the energy in the world; especially love, as a finite resource that can be used up. They do not recognize it for the eternal stream of energy that is infinite and always flowing. The self less person feels as if they must surrender love and other resources because of the belief that giving it to themselves means that they are depriving someone else of that love and those resources. As if there is only so much to go around. The selfish person also thinks there is only so much to go around, but they feel no deep connection or affinity with other people and so, they think they must take love and other resources from them; otherwise, they will not have enough to survive. When you are completely in alignment, there is no way for anyone to take enough of your energy that you would feel a deficiency because your own source stream, is an infinite stream.
Honestly, narcissists are not likely to identify themselves as narcissists or seek healing. The reason is, to recognize the problem in themselves and to seek help, they have to remember the deeply repressed trauma within them and re experience the pain of their early lives. The two most crucial steps for a narcissist to take is:
changing their thoughts about the hostility of the world and themselves, so they can develop the capacity for intimacy. This enables them to have a connection with and relate to others others deeply enough that they begin to care about the wellbeing of others as well.
And Developing an abundance mindset about every resource in life, from love to money, so they do not feel the need to take resources from others. Even though there are always exceptions in this world, narcissists are created in a very specific way. The narcissist was a child who was unable to conform to the fantasy that one parent or another held for the child’s personality or behavior. They could not figure out how to please the adult. As a result, the child was treated as if they were willful and difficult. They were “the problem child”. The parent personalized the child’s behavior, developed resistance to the child and punished the child for it in covert or overt ways. It is very likely that this child was called selfish and ungrateful growing up. The primary caregiver resented the child on a deep level. As a result, the adult saw the child as a threat on a subconscious level. The environment between the child and this primary attachment figure was therefore a hostile relationship on an emotional level and perhaps even on a physical level. As a result, this child cannot attach to his or her primary attachment figure. They do not attach to adults because they don’t trust adults. They develop a selfish and hostile worldview because they feel unloved. They believe that the world is the same way as their relationship with their parent is; that the world is without warmth, acceptance and love. They close down emotionally. They believe that the world is unsafe and that everyone is out for their own. The lose hope for being lovable. They feel completely unworthy and embark on a mission to feel good about themselves. Shame, distrust, rage and neediness accumulate over the child’s life into adulthood. In an unloving world, where they do not deserve love, they cannot get love and they cannot get their needs met freely from others. They have to manipulate people to get what they need. This is what creates the foundation of narcissistic personality disorder. A lot of people who seek fame, seek it because they grew up in environments like the one I have just described and their lives have become nothing but a perpetual search for self worth. And the real reason that so many people in Hollywood can’t make relationships work long term is because this is their life story when it comes to love. Narcissism is not a disorder, it is an adaptation. Narcissistic parents (whom are in denial about their own narcissistic tendencies) breed either narcissistic children or powerlessly co dependent, self less people. Compassion is necessary when interacting with narcissists. Narcissists hold some of the most painful beliefs and therefore live some of the most painful lives you can find on this earth. People often think narcissists have a high level of self-esteem. They do not. In fact, their life is a perpetual search for self worth and self-view gratification because they are very insecure. But what should we do if we have attracted a narcissistic person into our lives? If we attract narcissistic people into our lives, it is time to look at our own personalities and past traumas.
Many people who attract narcissistic people into their lives, just like the narcissist, had self-centered parents or caregivers growing up. They felt unloved by their parents because they grew up feeling like their parents were constantly trying to take from them instead of give to them. Narcissistic parents tend to treat their children like extensions of themselves; as a result they use their children as a self-gratification tool. Their children are used to achieve something for themselves. Pageant moms are a very good example of this. Their children do not feel seen and valued for who they really are. As a result, this becomes a trauma. The mind and heart desires to heal trauma and so, when this child grows up, they will find themselves re-creating the relationship with their parents either with friends, bosses or significant others. They do this in order to try to solve the original trauma. If they can get someone like mommy or daddy (who is just as selfish) to love them, then in a way, they can heal from their past because they conquered that trauma. They can feel like mommy or daddy loves them. If they can’t get someone like mommy or daddy to love them, then it means they really are unlovable and that their parents were right about them.
We attract people into our lives that are on the same emotional level that we are. This is why narcissists and selfless people are such a perfect vibrational match. That is good news though. It means the more we heal, the more we attract healthy people that are capable of reciprocal love into our lives. Now you are probably wondering how to tell if you have attracted a narcissist into your life. In order to determine if you are dealing with a narcissist, ask yourself these questions:
Is there reciprocity in the relationship? Or is one person always the giver and the other the taker? Are you able to be yourself in the relationship? Do you feel like you have to play down your talents to make them feel less threatened? Or does this friend celebrate you and allow you to shine in your own right? Is there a sharing of vulnerability on both sides, meaning that you can both discuss your real feelings with each other? Do you trust this person with your feelings or do you find yourself on guard? Have they ever used your feelings against you? Can your friend give you empathy and understanding, or do they give you sympathy which makes you feel less than? Does this friend bring out the best in you? Do you feel good about yourself in the presence of this person? Do you get to be your real self both in good times and bad times? When issues come up that need to be discussed, is this friend accountable for their own behavior? Are they capable of self-awareness and self-evaluation? Are you allowed to have healthy boundaries with this person? When setting boundaries, does it cause problems between you? Do you feel like setting boundaries would mean losing them? Or are your needs and wants understood and easily worked through between you? Do you care about each other for who you are as people, rather than what you do in your accomplishments? Does the friend exploit you for his or her own ends, or value what you bring to the relationship? If you find that you have the tendency to attract narcissists into your life, it is time to learn healthy boundaries. The most important thing to understand about boundaries, is that you can very easily develop healthy boundaries by honoring what you feel. To learn more about boundaries, look up my video on YouTube called “Personal Boundaries vs. Oneness, (how to develop healthy boundaries)”. You’re not going to be able to cause a narcissist to heal. They need to desire healing on their own, for themselves first. So all we can do is focus on healing ourselves. But beware, when you begin to honor your own boundaries, you will see much less of the narcissist. True narcissists have become energy vampires out of necessity. If you do not let them feed off of your energy, they will leave to find another person to feed off of out of necessity because they do not yet know how to generate energy within themselves. You do not want to be fed off of by an energy vampire, so let them go and let their place in your life be filled by people who have the capacity for love and intimacy and reciprocation. If you are dealing with a narcissist who has recognized their problem and has initiated their own healing, the best thing you can do for them, is to help them change their worldview. Changing their beliefs about love and, their own self worth and relationships is crucial. Unconditional love does have the capacity to rehabilitate narcissism, but we need to be honest with ourselves about whether it is self-loving for us to practice unconditional love with a narcissist right now, or whether it is self-loving to set our boundaries by instead surrounding ourselves with people who can reciprocally love us. If you are a person who attracts narcissists, it is crucial that you figure out your own needs and wants and begin to honor them. It is also crucial that you examine your own outdated beliefs about selfishness and self-sacrifice. Learn to have realistic expectations of a narcissist. Think of them like a starving child. Asking a starving child to share food is an unrealistic expectation. But this is what we are doing when we are expecting reciprocation for a narcissist. If you adjust your expectations of them and get your needs met elsewhere, it will be easier to let them be how they are and not take their behaviors so personally. Remember that you cannot love a narcissist enough to love them out of their narcissism. Do not expect to be able to please this person. Their belief is that there is never enough for them. This means, no matter how much you give them, they are still stuck in scarcity and are unlikely to wake up to the abundance of love they have as a result of you.
The other crucial thing is that we recognize what the narcissist is mirroring in us. To do this, assess the emotions you feel relative to them. Do you feel worthless, invisible, used or exhausted? If so, we need to get into an attitude of pre-manifestation by understanding that this person is nothing more than a mirror for those feelings, which were already inside us. Those feelings were what attracted this experience with this person into our lives in the first place. Where did those feelings really begin? We need to make it about ourselves instead of about the narcissist and realize that if we find improvement in those areas, they will not reflect into our life experience. We will stop attracting narcissistic people to mirror the issues within us that need to be healed.

Disabilities and Spirituality

Genetic coding is seen as the “cause” for many disabilities. That is no different that saying that light comes from light bulbs. We know that the story of light began way before the light bulb. Genetic abnormality is a physical symptom that is caused by the focus or by the intention and yes, even on occasion by the resistance that is held in thoughts and focus of consciousness of the non-physical being creating a specific body. A great many times, a being that incarnates into a disability, has chosen to activate that disability within genetics or within their body or brain specifically because of the special and different perspective that choice offers to them. Each disability offers a very specific kind of contrast; therefore each disability offers a very specific kind of expansion. The lessons learned from that space, are quite unique. For example, a person may choose prior to even incarnating, to incarnate with cerebral palsy. This decision gives rise to all kinds of contrast, things like low self esteem, feeling isolated and cut off from their peers, being unable to fit in, being unable to control their motor movements, or being dependent on other people. This contrast enables them to learn interdependence. It allows them to learn the freedom of consciousness separate from the body. It allows them to discover their true self, and the value of nonconformity. If someone develops a disability after they were already here in the physical environment, it means they gave themself the opportunity to learn from the contrast of loss. Losing an ability that you did in fact have once is it’s own kind of contrast. If you have lost an ability that you once had, such as the ability to walk, you will feel the limitation even more than if you were born without an ability, and in that experience, you desire the opposite of limitation (like freedom) and thus, if you keep following the thoughts and actions that feel good, you will inevitably discover and experience real freedom.
The thing that causes pain relative to disabilities is not the fact that people with disabilities have limitations. Everyone has limitations and everyone has different abilities. Those limitations cause only a certain amount of contrast. What causes people with disabilities and people who interact with disabled people real pain and suffering, is the fact that their specific limitation is seen as “Inappropriate”. The focus placed upon it, is that something is or has gone wrong. Comparing your physical experience with other beings on this planet is what causes the majority of pain in the lives of people with disabilities. It causes a gap between themselves and their desires. That is what causes them to perceive a disability in the first place. Think of it this way, the fact that most of us humans cannot fly, does not cause us a lot of pain. We don’t even think about it most of the time. But if we were to meet a person who could fly, we would suddenly begin to feel disabled and that disability would cause us to feel negative emotion. We are comparing ourselves to how we think we should be. And when we fall short of how we think we should be, we suffer.
Can disabilities be improved? Yes. But it will never happen while you are resisting and trying to change or improve the disability. If this life experience has caused you to desire to live without the disability and if you can line up with being a joyful person with the “disability”, if you can line up with gratitude for the disability, you will have released enough resistance that you will see an improvement in the experience of the disability. This alignment is ultimately what causes blind men to see and paralyzed men to walk. But do not make a test out of lining up with the disability instead of resisting the disability specifically for the sake of seeing if you can improve the physical condition. That is resistance towards the disability and thus, it is counterproductive and will cause no improvement whatsoever.
For many of us who do not have what society calls a disability, we feel very sorry for people with disabilities. When we see someone living a life experience that we don’t want to live, we often get confused about why anyone would ever chose that experience. When we feel that hit of sympathy, it is an indication that we are out of alignment. We are recognizing their limitation. We are feeding energy to the limitation. If you want to see a disability through the eyes of truth, you must look for the value of the choice they made (even if they don’t know it was a choice). You must look for the person’s abilities instead of disabilities. You must focus on their capabilities, often-unique capabilities that would not be possible without the experience of the “disability”. Sometimes you will see someone with a disability defend and argue for their limitations and for their suffering. Some even develop a sense of entitlement because they believe no one on earth is suffering like they are suffering. They sink into victim consciousness. The world feels like the enemy to them. It is important that we have compassion for this reaction to incarnating with a disability. Why do people argue for their limitations? It is because they feel condemned, less than or powerless and they are looking for some kind of relief. They are looking to find relief by giving themselves some kind of permission from others to be where they are in a world that says that where they are is wrong. If you want to be happy and you also have a disability, you have to begin to try to find happiness with what is now, and what is now, is the disability. This is the only way to come into alignment with your inner being enough to allow yourself to access the knowledge about why you chose the experience of the disability in the first place. When it comes to disabilities, you will always feel emotionally bad when you are focused on what you cannot have or cannot do. When you focus on lack, you will suffer. When you focus instead on your capabilities and the special gifts that have arisen out of the experience (especially capabilities that you would not have if you did not have the disability), you will feel positive emotion. The bottom line is, when it comes to living with a disability or living with someone else who has a disability, we need to practice looking for what has gone right instead of what has gone wrong.

Want to Be Happy? Give Up on Happiness!

Happiness has become the new enlightenment. It has become the new heaven. An unattainable goal, a finish line that we keep chasing. When spiritual teachers (including myself) emphasize the importance of happiness and god forbid say that the purpose of life is happiness, the automatic assumption is that if you aren’t happy, you are doing something wrong. That only adds to the unhappiness. There is a kind of shame that arises within us when we are unhappy. This is especially painful when we identify with being unhappy. Some of us don’t have any idea what happiness really is, because we have never felt it. We feel the very worst about ourselves because we can’t seem to “get life right and be happy like other people can”. We begin to feel like we are karmically destined to suffer. This issue of attaching to happiness is just another branch off of the tree I like to call “trying to get life right”. We believe that if we are happy, we are getting our life right and if we are unhappy, we are getting our life wrong. We are holding onto the painful thought that we should be happy, even when we are not. This reaction to being unhappy only makes us unhappier. A lot of times, when we think we should be happy and we aren’t, we develop great resistance to our own negative emotions. We become resistant to suffering and to unhappiness. When this is the case, the desire for happiness doesn’t feel good. Instead, it feels desperate because we want something we don’t think we can have. We want happiness, but we don’t think we can have it. So we are focused on suffering and on unhappiness. Whatever we resist persists because by resisting it, we are feeding it with our energy, and we are feeding it with our focus. So what is the best thing we can do? The answer is… Give up on happiness. I know the idea of giving up on happiness may sound very odd coming from me because I have dedicated my life to teaching people how to find happiness. But many contradictory teachings are in fact quite complimentary. This is one of them. If you give up on happiness, you are releasing resistance to suffering and/or unhappiness.
Imagine that you lived your life in a continually flowing gale force wind. When you are resisting something, it is as if you are turned face first into the air current. It is hard to breathe, it’s hard to move because you are pushing against a strong air current. It is exhausting. When you stop resisting something, you allow the gale force wind to blow you wherever it wants to take you. Now imagine that this gale force wind has one prerogative, and that prerogative is to take you to what you have always wanted. Now do you see the benefit of releasing your resistance and going with the wind? The thing is, the universe is this gale force wind! Have you ever heard of a person who wanted a job promotion for years. They wanted it desperately, until it got so painful to keep desperately wanting that promotion that they gave up on it and started looking for another job, only to get a phone call hours or days later that they got the promotion? This is not the universe playing a cruel, ironic joke. What happened was, in the giving up of their desire, they did not get rid of the desire all together. After all, you can’t un-want what you want, but they did release resistance to what they didn’t want and thus, unconsciously allowed themselves to go with the wind and flow in the direction of what they did want, which was the promotion. The universe already knows you want to be happy. That is the only thing you really ever wanted. Everything else, such as that promotion, that boyfriend or girlfriend, that house, or that car, is just a means to that end, which is happiness. Not only does the universe know that you want happiness, the universe is pushing you, like a gale force wind you towards it. It is arranging all necessary conditions for your happiness. The only way the universe can achieve more expansion through your perspective is if you manage to go in the direction of and experience your own desires. The universe will facilitate your happiness every step of the way. So what happens if you let go of your resistance to being unhappy? What happens if you let yourself go with the wind? You will allow yourself to flow in the direction of what you want, which is happiness. The beliefs that perpetuate unhappiness, such as the belief that we are karmic ally destined to suffer, turn us against the air current of the universe and thus in the opposite direction of what we want. There are many beliefs that cause us to suffer, but sometimes it is the desperate quest for happiness that causes us to resist happiness and suffer the very most. When we become desperate for something, we feel that deep sense of need arise within us. When we feel that deep sense of need arise within us, it means that our desire is coming from an acute awareness of the lack of something in our life. We cannot be focused upon the lack of happiness and feel happy at the same time. Sometimes our awareness of our unhappiness and desperate desire for happiness is so strong that the path of least resistance is to release our attachment to happiness all together.
When happiness ceases to be your goal, where you are cannot be wrong or lacking in any way because you cannot compare your now to your imagined future happiness. You cannot feel bad because you aren’t there yet when there isn’t anywhere in particular to get to. You cannot cause yourself to not want happiness because you cannot cause yourself to not want something that you want. But you can shift your focus so you are not focusing towards the now as if the now is unwanted. The best way to let go of the destination we call happiness, is to fall in love with what is. Fall in love with the now.
The only reason that any being suffers is because they are currently believing a thought that contradicts what is. The “should” thoughts are the best example of this. If I am thinking “I should be happy” and I’m not, I’m believing a thought that contradicts what is. I am in resistance to myself in my current state. Our stress in life is caused by arguing with what is. We can use should to our advantage by embracing the idea that what happened should have happened and was supposed to happen. Embrace the idea that nothing can go wrong, that everything that happens to us is actually happening for us. The reality is, no one wants to lose their job or have an argument with a loved one or to get in an accident. But these things happen. None of us maintains our vibration at a level where nothing ever happens to cause us to feel negative emotion. And so it isn’t helpful to mentally argue with the things that happen by thinking “that shouldn’t have happened”. Or “I should be happy right now even though this is happening to me”. It is much better to begin switching your focus to embracing what is right here and now. Besides, if none of us maintains our vibration at a level where nothing ever happens to cause us to feel negative emotion, perhaps that means no one is meant to maintain their vibration at a level where nothing ever happens to cause us to feel negative emotion. Focus at what is, with the intention of looking for what is right about what is. We have to begin to look for positives within every “unwanted” thing that is currently occurring. Not only does this cause us to feel better, it increases our vibration and causes us to release resistance to what is occurring. When we release resistance to what is occurring, we often find that we are no longer a match to what is occurring, so it ceases to be our experience. One day, I was on my way to a date that I had been looking forward to for days and my car broke down. At first I was very stressed and unhappy because I was believing the thought “my car shouldn’t break down, this shouldn’t be happening right now.” Two strangers pushed the car to the side of the road after about thirty attempts to re-start the engine. I called a tow service and sat there waiting for them in a downward spiral, feeling as if the universe was picking on me. I wanted to feel better, so I opened my positive aspects journal and wrote, “the car broke down” at the top of the page. I made myself write a list of positive aspects about the car breaking down. I tried to look for proof that the car breaking down was right instead of wrong.
Here are some examples of what I wrote that day: I broke down right next to a pull off on the side of the road. The model of car I am driving is simple to fix. The electricity in the car still works so I’m listening to good music. There are tons of people willing to help in the city. This is an opportunity to practice being flexible. I’m happy that I am focusing positively instead of negatively right now. I have no way of knowing that the date would be enjoyable or in alignment with my highest good. The leaves blowing around on the street are artistically beautiful. Etc. Somewhere in the middle of the exercise, I felt my mood lift. I felt relief. I did not have the resistance that I had to being broken down and guess what happened because I had released that resistance? The car miraculously started as if it had no problem in the first place. We can take this one step further when we have developed resistance to being unhappy because we desperately want happiness so badly. By looking for positives about being unhappy, we find approval for unhappiness. We start to look at being unhappy as if something has gone right instead of wrong. How is it right for me to be unhappy? I will give you some examples:
I suffered a big disappointment; anyone in my position would be feeling this way, or worse. Being unhappy causes me to know strongly what I don’t want and thus strongly what I do want. Strong desires = big expansion. It gives me clarity on my preferences. I am facilitating universal expansion by allowing the universe to know through my eyes, what it is not. If we only experience happiness, we don’t know what happiness is. Experiencing unhappiness leads us to self-exploration and self-discovery and introspection. It facilitates self-awareness. Unhappiness causes us to question the meaning of life itself. Being unhappy helps me to relate to other people that are unhappy. It can bring people together so there is an opportunity for collective healing. It causes me to have to figure out how to get happy. As a result, I can teach other People how to move in the direction of happiness. Being unhappy makes for some really poignant art. Unhappiness is very grounding and it puts into perspective what really matters. Being unhappy makes you so uncomfortable that it forces you to have to move forward and get un-stuck one way or another.
Another thing we can do to let go of happiness so as to find happiness is to set a more attainable goal than happiness, which is on the way to happiness. Happiness is your birthright and it is attainable, but most of us don’t believe that and so happiness feels unattainable. When we feel like happiness is unattainable, we have to set a more believable goal for ourselves. It is up to you to decide what desire feels attainable for you. One example of a more attainable desire is the desire to have three moments of contentment per day. Another example of a more attainable desire is the desire to feel a sense of fulfillment at least one time each day. You will find that it will be much easier to facilitate this goal, because you believe it is reachable.
Another way of letting go of happiness is to realize that you see happiness as a goal. Because happiness is a goal to you, happiness is like a receding finish line or horizon line that you will never cross. The closer you move to what you think happiness is, the further it recedes off into the distance. When happiness is about attaining your desires, and your desires will never cease expanding, you will never truly achieve happiness. Sometimes realizing that you will never achieve the goal of happiness helps you to stop chasing it in the distance and find contentment with where you are. It doesn’t make you lazy or passive or apathetic, it just helps you to be able to enjoy the process of life instead of obsessively chase the promise of future happiness. When you are feeling stuck in negative emotion, you do not have access to purely positive states like happiness. Happiness seems so far away and unreachable, that all focusing on happiness does, is to remind you of how happy you aren’t. This is why it is good idea to begin to live your life according to the feeling of relief instead of happiness. No matter where you are vibrationally and emotionally, you always have access to the feeling of relief. Relief is the byproduct of release. Release causes relief. When you are feeling guilty, thinking something that causes you to express anger will cause you to release your attachment to guilt and thus you will feel a sensation of relief in the body. Any release of a lower vibration and movement into a higher vibration will feel emotionally like relief. So chase relief instead. Perhaps the best way to do this is to become aware of the only choice that exists for you in the present moment; better or worse. At all moments of the day, you have one option, better or worse. Does the thought I’m thinking feel better or worse? Do the words I’m speaking feel better or worse? Does the action I’m taking feel better or worse? Begin to live your life thought-by-thought, word-by-word and action-by-action according to what feels better. Choosing what feels better, will feel like relief where as choosing what feels worse, will feel like stress. By doing this, you are following your emotional guidance system and by following relief, you are using the feeling of relief to steer you in the direction of your happiness. Thoughts are what cause us to feel unhappy, but a thought is powerless and painless until we believe it. Have mercy for your thoughts. Meet them with understanding. They are not out to get you; they are not hell bent on hurting you. If you can stop believing the thoughts you think, by withholding your commitment to whether they are true or not, they will have no power over the way you feel. You are not your suffering, you are not your story, and you are not even your identity.
Nothing has gone wrong if you are suffering. You cannot make suffering wrong without making learning and expansion wrong too. Our attachment to happiness and our striving towards happiness makes us resist unhappiness and thus, perpetuate unhappiness in our lives. Happiness will not be possible for us until we realize that happiness is not something that can be created or achieved, it is an ever present essence which must instead be allowed.

Strike "Deserve" From Your Vocabulary

When it comes to manifestation, or the achievement of our desires, nothing stands in our way quite like the concept of deserving. We feel as if we must deserve to have our desires manifest. We feel as if we must deserve to have our needs met and our wants met. That is a problem when very few people, if any actually feel deserving.
The word deserving originated in the 1200s from the Latin word dēservīre, which meant to devote oneself to the service of. The word then evolved to mean: To merit, be qualified for, be worthy of or have claim to something (such as a reward or punishment or a desire etc.) because of actions, qualities or situation. Herein lies the problem. The very concept of deserve implies that one must first serve, qualify or earn to receive.
Deserving is a concept, which did not originate from source consciousness; it is an idea that originated from human consciousness. It originated from “out of alignment” authority figures. We gain this concept from our primary caregivers. Love is our very first and last desire. It is after all, the desire, which keeps us alive as babies. If someone doesn’t love us enough to care for us, we will starve to death. When we act in ways that are deemed “bad”, love is withheld from us. We are punished or sent to our rooms. When we act in ways that are deemed “good”, love is given to us. We are rewarded with cuddles or kisses or gifts or praise. From the very early months of our lives, we begin to notice that love must be earned and that it is earned by being good. Being good in essence, qualifies me for love. It is not long after this that we learn that love isn’t the only thing that works this way, in fact all things that we want work this way. We must be good in order to deserve presents from Santa Claus. We must behave in order to deserve a cookie. We must do chores to deserve allowance. We must work to deserve money. We must be philanthropic to deserve good things to happen to us etc. But it gets worse, when I think I deserve something, I see myself as entitled to that thing. But in society, entitlement is seen as a bad thing. An entitled person is seen as selfish, ungrateful, un-thoughtful and therefore “bad”. So we believe that we must deserve something in order to get it. But that if we think we deserve something, we are entitled and therefore bad, and therefore don’t deserve it. Talk about a lose-lose belief. Our entire society is built upon the concept of qualifying for our desires. We must deserve in order to receive. This is because the social order of the family and the social order of this human society is based on the concept of punishment and reward. What’s more than that, it is based upon the concept of earning.
The minute we think we must earn what we desire, it puts us in a subservient position relative to what we are trying to get our desires from. We were subservient to our parents when we were trying to earn the cookie from them. We were subservient to our boss when we were trying to earn money from the company. We were subservient to the government when we were trying to earn our freedom and avoid prison by following rules. This list goes on and on. But now, when it comes to manifestation, we think we are in a subservient position to the universe itself (otherwise known as Source or God) when we are trying to earn or qualify for what we have asked for. We feel like we have to be worthy of the universe meeting our needs and manifesting our desires. But in order to qualify for the manifestation of those needs and desires, we feel as if we must do something to be worthy of those things. This is a major issue when few of us in this world feel worthy. We are Source itself manifested through a physical human body. This means, we are an extension of that which we call the Universe or God. We are indivisible from it. When we appeal to the Universe or God for something that we desire, we are appealing to our true self. We are not appealing to a judgmental authority figure, which decides whether or not we have qualified for what we want. Our desires are the very things that enable expansion. Every time you have a desire, the universe matches the vibration of that desire exactly. It adopts that vibration because it is in the process of achieving self-awareness. And when a being desires something, it is as good as saying “universe, this is what you are”. This is why the universe or God, knows it is love above all other things. It knows it is love above all else, because love is the most unanimous desire above all other desires that has emanated from every being in existence since the first separate being was thought into creation by source consciousness. The universe wants you to desire, it benefits by your desire. What’s more than this, it cannot expand or become self aware without your desire. And unless you “line up with” (manifest) your desire, you cannot achieve a new point of perspective and therefore you cannot desire more and therefore you cannot evolve and therefore the universe cannot evolve. The universe’s desire for self-enlightenment is dependent upon your individual desires coming to fruition. What does this mean? The universe receives, when it gives to you.
The universe is not an authority figure; it is just the less condensed version of you. It is by far the larger part of you. So when the universe gives you something, it is you that is giving to you. And you cannot be subservient to yourself. So let me ask you a question, Do you have to qualify for your own creation? If you create something, like art, do you have to deserve that art before you see it manifest on the canvass? How worthy are you of your own creation? Do you have to qualify for your own creation? NO!!! Our life, our manifestations are our own creation. They are creations of our consciousness. In reality, they are not granted by anything or anyone. Once they are created by our consciousness, they are either allowed or resisted by our thoughts, words and actions here in our waking physical life. What does this mean? It means that your deserving was never in question. You are in essence entitled to everything you could ever desire. You deserve everything you could ever desire and nothing you could ever do could make you unworthy of what you desire. Not murder, not selfishness, not pride, not abuse, not anything.
To deserve, in essence means to prove yourself worthy of what you need and what you desire. And you know what? That idea in and of itself is ludicrous. It is an idea that is not supported by the universe at large. It is an idea that is designed to maintain social order and it has done a pretty good job of that. For the most part, we have maintained social order in the family and in the society at the cost of killing our individual sense of worthiness. Well done! Today, I want to turn the concept of deserving upside down and make a bold statement… Deserve should be stricken from our vocabulary. I suggest that we replace the word deserve as it applies to manifestation (or the attaining of our desires) with a new word that does not yet exist in the English language. The word is “inown”. It is a portmanteau of inherent and ownership.
Everything you want is already yours. It belongs to you. Regardless of whether you realize that yet, or have manifested it yet, it is already yours. Therefore, you own it. And it is within you; it is not granted to you by someone or something else. Therefore, it is inherent. There is an inherent ownership of everything you have, do or will ever desire. The trick to manifesting is to recognize that inherent ownership. Which is to instantly recognize yourself of worthy and therefore deserving of what you want. To “inown”, is to recognize this inherent ownership of what you desire. To ask someone, do you feel as if you “inown” that thing you want? Is to ask if they are recognizing their inherent ownership of that thing they want. It is to ask if they recognize that they do not have to be deserving of it, because it already belongs to them.
The power of a new word is that it does not come with attachments or pre conceived beliefs. We can invent it’s meaning. So I put forth today the suggestion that we begin to use this new word, “inown” in place of the corrupted word deserve. So that it may bring us closer to the truth that we do not need to qualify for what we want. Everything we want, we are worthy of, because it is already inherently ours. We just need to recognize it.

What is the Merkabah?

The Merkabah was thought to be a divine light vehicle (a spiritual space ship of sorts) that transported people from one dimension to another and thus enabled people to access, connect with and communicate with beings of other dimensions. It is counter-rotating fields of light in the shape of two interlocked tetrahedra, where one point of the tetrahedra points up and the other points down, forming the shape of a star tetrahedron. This is why it is referred to as the chariot of ascension. When viewed, it looks like a three dimensional Star of David. Why doe it look like the Star of David? Because the Star of David, came about as a result of people observing the merkabah phenomena. This is why the Star of David among other things, represents the idea of the soul transcending the temporal world. Even though mankind has witnessed the merkabah since spiritual curiosity arose, the merkabah made its major debut in human consciousness before Jesus was born amongst those who practiced early Jewish mysticism. It showed up in their visions. They began calling it merkabah, which means “to ride” or “thing to ride in” depending on its usage. They believed it to be a spiritual chariot of sorts. Amongst religious scholars of that time, it was hailed as a chariot of the gods.
The merkabah became a secret doctrine, only known to few. A few rabbi, mystics and philosophers preserved the knowledge while many others forbid its study. Over the years, scholars and prophets and spiritual leaders have come up with their own separate ideas about what the merkabah is and about how to utilize it. Many of them of course have never seen the merkabah and so they believe that it is more of a metaphor rather than an actuality. Fast forward and now, here we are in a world where no one agrees about the merkabah.
 
HOW DOES THE MERKABAH WORK
It has long been thought by believers in the actuality of the merkabah that this inter-dimensional light vehicle is located in each person’s base chakra that when activated, it expands to encompass their body. It is thought that the merkabah can be activated through the use of breath work techniques or spinning techniques, or certain eye movements or mudras. The average human brain does not believe that consciousness can exit and enter this dimension at will with no “vehicle” because it understands travel only in terms of physical movement. It understands travel to somewhere else, only in terms of a vehicle or craft. So the human brain has interpreted the merkabah as a vehicle when it is nothing of the sort. It is a geometric pattern that can move either like a torus or like counter rotating light fields. The energy field of a person, which is always present, takes on this pattern when their consciousness is no longer purely focused physically and is now able to travel or is traveling through other dimensional realities. We can take this one step further though. A fully activated merkabah indicates that a person is able to take their body through star gates and to other dimensional realities, instead of simply take their consciousness to other dimensional realities whilst leaving their body behind.
The fully activated merkabah indicates that a person is able to transform the entire body into light. It is a form of light travel. In other words, in the final stages of merkabah activation, through a shift in consciousness, the triad of the mind, spirit and body completely integrates into one pattern of light and is then able to transcend the limitation of the physical time space reality. The concept of the merkabah was brought to the attention of early mystic scholars by the Annunaki beings that had relocated to the area of our universe that we call Sirius. There was no other way for these early scholars to conceptualize of extraterrestrial beings or space travel. They saw the rest of the universe as heavens and these beings as gods. And so, the merkabah was seen as a chariot of the gods. Here’s the problem; human beings began to think that the merkabah was a pre requisite for “ascension”. It is not; it is the result of ascension. Ascension is nothing more than the process of altering your perspective to a perspective that takes in more of an objective point of view of the universe we live in and of life itself. And there are a billion and a half techniques that aid a person to shift their perspective. It is thought that prohibits a person from experiencing anything more than the physical dimension. It is thought that enables a person to experience more than the physical dimension. Thought is the inter-dimensional vehicle. This is why the most beneficial teachers of ascension, are focused on one primary thing, and that is to help people to develop a flexibility and an openness of mind. That is to helping people to commandeer their focus. He, who plays with thought, plays with the very matrix of this universe. You cannot activate the merkabah so that the merkabah itself can assist you to reach other dimensions or ascend. Instead, the merkabah “activates” on it’s own as a result of shifting consciousness. It is a symptom of increasing the vibration of consciousness, not a cause of increasing consciousness. The merkabah “becomes alive”. And it becoming alive, means the energy field of a person reflects the fact that they have developed a pattern of consciousness that enables their perspective to be unrestricted by the limitations of the vibrational density of the physical dimension.
 
INTER-DIMENSIONAL TRAVEL
The triangle is a pattern we see that emerges as a result of directed consciousness. Directed consciousness is experienced as movement. The triangle is also a pattern that emerges as a result of the desire to merge the body, mind and spirit. These are the two primary reasons that the merkabah takes on the interlocking triangular structure that it does.
If you continue your spiritual practice by continuing to expand with the natural progression of spiritual learning, it is inevitable that your merkabah will activate. In other words, it is inevitable that your merkabah will become alive. You do not have to “go anywhere” to travel inter-dimensionally. That is the physical understanding of movement and travel. When it comes to inter-dimensional “travel”, the process depends on two principals, intention and attention. It’s a three-step process using these two principals. First you set your intention and then you place your attention on things related to that intention. And then you merge attention and intention by focusing the energy of your intention towards the end result of your desire. In summation, the merkabah is the pattern and structure that the human light body takes on when one’s consciousness is ready for, or is participating in, inter-dimensional “travel”. This pattern, once activated, begins to appear near the base chakra and emanates upward forming a torus around the body, which then gradually transforms into the star tetrahedron shape that we call, the merkabah.
 
 
 

Faith

To have faith is to have positive confidence or trust in something. It is to think something is true, even without proof. But then, the question stands, how can one have confidence or trust in something with no evidence to back up that faith and trust?
The famous philosopher Bertrand Russell once said, "Where there is evidence, no one speaks of 'faith'. We do not speak of faith that two and two are four or that the earth is round. We only speak of faith when we wish to substitute emotion for evidence." Unfortunately for Bertrand Russell, he is forgetting something, the first person who believed the earth was round (enough to be motivated to set out to prove that it was round) had to go on faith before there was proof to back up that belief. And science cannot yet prove that emotion is not proof or evidence.
Every single thing in existence begins as a thought first. When that thought is thought enough, it becomes a belief. Proof is the manifestation of a thought that you think often enough that it becomes part of your physical reality. You look at that physical manifestation and it reinforces the thought so that now you have confidence in the truth and validity of that thought. Having confidence in the truth and validity of a thought based on manifested proof is called a belief.
Faith is the step or the bridge between thinking and believing. It is the confidence in the truth or validity of something positive before the proof has manifested physically. The person who does not value faith, values the idea that there is an external world that exists separate from us. The person, who does not value faith, believes that we merely interact with and observe this world. This is not a person who believes that thought creates reality. This is a person who belongs to the religion called science. And science does not yet recognize the observer as the creator of what is observed. Fortunately for us, science is a religion that is always evolving. Having read the previous paragraphs, do you notice how I have not once said that faith is knowing the truth of something even before the proof that it is true has manifested physically? Faith in our modern society is synonymous with ignorance because so often, individuals use faith to establish a sense of certainty and cognitive closure. It is the excuse people use to make a claim of the certainty of a certain truth, which closes them down to all other possibilities. In other words, it is pretending to know something that they do not know. A good example of this is heaven. Most people have never seen heaven for themselves. They have no proof other than the promise of the words belonging to other people to back up the belief that heaven is real. Words in a book called the bible, words coming from the preacher’s lips, words coming from their direct family members etc. And so, most people do not actually believe heaven exists or know that it exists (even though they may say they do). Instead, people have faith that heaven exists. They mistake faith for knowing. And by closing their minds down around the truth of knowing, they become unable to experience other potentials and other realities. They become selectively ignorant. To close one’s own perspective down to possibilities and to latch onto the knowing of one specific truth is to live in a state of ignorance. To have faith is to have confidence in or trust in, but to not know. People only confuse faith for knowing. This is the shadow side of faith. And, it presents a problem.
When we observe other people who have faith, we are jealous of their certainty. We are jealous of their ability to create cognitive closure. Because we do not recognize that all they are doing is mistaking faith with knowing. After all, the only certainty in our universe is uncertainty. And the highest of objective truths is that truth is subjective. Faith is ignorance when faith becomes proof of “knowing”. To have confidence in something or to hope for something is not to know something. Instead it is a kind of living bravery. It is the bravery to walk openly into the world of the unknown based on emotion and intuition. Emotion is like the tether between your soul and your physical life. He, who has faith, is brave enough to follow that tether into the unknown.
Faith can only happen in the absence of knowing. Not one scientific discovery, began without a scientist first having faith. After all, he did not yet know. After all, he did not yet have the proof he needed to be sure. The average scientist does not yet recognize his inner urgings and hunches as emotion, intuition and ultimately, as faith. Many critics of faith claim that faith is only used in the absence of good supporting evidence. And that is true, because if faith had good supporting evidence, it would no longer be faith, instead it would be a belief that you would call a “truth” or “something that you know”. But faith is a bridge between thinking and knowing. Faith should never close a person down to possibilities. Faith should never be confused with knowing. Most of what a spiritual person is, is a person who is full of faith. It is a person who is willing to live with confidence and hope in a universe full of the unknown. To have faith, is to be brave.
Many people believe that faith is the absence of doubt. This could not be further from the truth. We only think that faith is the absence of doubt when we confuse faith with knowing. To doubt is to have uncertainty about something. Faith cannot exist in a universe of certainty, certainty is knowing. Faith is not required when we know. And so, if doubt is uncertainty, doubt is a necessary condition of faith. If we take doubt a step further (and let doubt mean what it means emotionally to most people), to doubt is to consider something unlikely. To consider something unlikely is to act as if you know. It is to pretend you know something that you do not know. It is to bring a sense of certainty to a universe of uncertainty. For this reason, doubt in all actuality, is the flip side of faith. Doubt is only another kind of faith. It is faith in the negative instead of faith in the positive. Like the shadow side of faith, to consider something unlikely (doubt) is to act as if you know. People use doubt to gain a sense of certainty and cognitive closure in the same way that people use faith to gain a sense of certainty and cognitive closure.
If you are a person who doubts, you have a great capacity for faith. The only difference between you and a person, who is full of faith, is that you have endless confidence and trust for negative instead of positive outcomes and things. Like faith, doubt is a bridge between thinking and believing. It is best to burn this bridge down when the bridge does not benefit your journey. It is best to only build the bridge of doubt between thoughts that feel bad to think and things you don’t want to believe. It is best to build the bridge of faith only between thoughts that feel good and things you want to believe. When we begin to experience pain, is when we build the bridge of doubt between thoughts that feel good to think and things we want to believe.
So how can someone manifest what he or she wants without faith? They can replace doubt with curiosity and maybe. They can let go of the need for certainty and cognitive closure by welcoming the state of uncertainty. To do this, they can move into the space of curiosity, which is a joyous state of not knowing. They can pull their teeth out of the idea of truth and reality. The reality is, no one knows what reality is. To commit to curiosity, is to release resistance to the painful things we have confidence in or that we think we know. And so, when we do manifestation exercises or look for proof for something we want to believe, we do so without an attachment to whether it is true or not. This is a state that true scientists can teach us to uphold. It is to take on an attitude of “wouldn’t it be nice if”, or “maybe”. If you visualize what you want, make it a game instead of a matter of life and death. Do the visualization out of curiosity about the potential that mind could create reality. Remain open to all possibilities. Also, allow yourself to prove things you yourself. Deliberately go looking for proof to back up what you want to believe. Quit expecting yourself to have the same level of faith that other people have. Quit expecting yourself to know. There is no earthly reason, given your experience, that you should know or should have faith. In fact, the main reason that the thought “I don’t have faith” hurts us, is because we think we should have faith. Why should we have faith when we have come to expect negative outcomes? We have learned that having faith when we expect negative outcomes, only ends in disappointment.
He, who lacks faith, has been victimized and now sees himself as a victim; he sees himself at the mercy of an external world. When we are victimized, we lose trust and faith in ourselves. Faith is corrupted within the human system when we do not trust ourselves. Ultimately, we recognize that the world at large is a reflection of us, so if we do not have confidence in or trust something “out there”, there is something inside us that we do not trust. We need to figure out what it is about ourselves that we do not trust and we need to learn to trust ourselves again, because faith is the organic result of trusting ourselves. Having positive confidence and trust in something is the result of trusting ourselves to create positive outcomes for ourselves.
No one can fake faith. But deep down inside all beings, however subconscious it may be, there is the recognition of one’s own infinite being. A being that is a creator at its core. And thus, deep down there is a faith (however faint it may be) that one can create and therefore can have confidence or trust not only in positive outcomes, but also in oneself.

False Selves

The inability to establish real intimacy is the root of all relationship issues today. Including the relationship you have with yourself. Intimacy is knowing and being known for who we really are in every aspect of our lives. You can think of intimacy as me being able to bring the truth of who I am to the center of our relationship and you being able to bring the truth of who you are to the center of the relationship and both of us being received, acknowledged, accepted and loved for who we are without needing to fix each other. There’s one major problem though. I have to know who I am before I am able to share all of myself with you and you have to know who you are before you are able to share all of yourself with me. Most of us have no idea who we really are because we are shamed out of our true selves as children growing up in dysfunctional families in this dysfunctional human society. In order to adapt to our families and to society, we have created false selves. We have created false selves that are so good at what they do; even we have mistaken them for ourselves. We have a major problem differentiating between our false self and our real self. We know something feels “off” about our life, but we don’t know what because we have forgotten who we really are.
Because we have forgotten who we are, we have built our relationships upon everything except intimacy. We have built our relationships based on the fact that we find each other sexy. We have built our relationships based on the fact that we both like football. We have built our relationships based on the fact that he or she would make a good husband or wife. We have built our relationships based on what we do for each other. And so, something is missing from our relationships. They feel empty after the initial excitement has worn off. We want someone who will understand how we feel, but we do not understand how we feel. We want trust, but we don’t trust ourselves. We want honesty, but we can’t be honest with ourselves when we don’t even realize that we are being dishonest with ourselves in the first place.
Society has many mantras. Mantras such as, family is everything, nothing that’s worth having is easy, pink is for girls, money is the root of evil etc. These mantras are part of society’s programming. They are designed to control our actions. They are designed to override the emotional guidance system because we are convinced that ‘everyone following their own emotional guidance system = social chaos’. This programming works in a very straightforward way, it tells us from a very young age that what we saw was not what we saw, what we heard was not what we heard, and most of all, what we felt was not how we felt. Before you get defensive about your own upbringing, look at this very seemingly innocuous, commonplace example: The toddler falls and bumps their head. They are crying and everything in them is saying, “I’m not ok” but the parent says, “you’re fine, it’s only a little bump”. At that moment, the child’s feelings are invalidated and the child learns that they cannot trust their emotional guidance system to relay accurate information; after all, their body and emotions are saying one thing, “I’m not ok”, and their parent (who is the god of their world at this age) is saying another, “I’m fine and shouldn’t be feeling this way.”
In order to fit into our families and society, we have to adapt. We have to become a certain way. For example, a naturally free spirited and tomboyish girl is born into a prestigious southern family. If she were to adhere to her own emotional guidance system and stay true to who she is, life would get very hard for her. She would be the disgrace of the family and her parent’s disapproval of her would mean that from her perspective, she would lose their love. So, she begins to create a false self. She creates a false self that likes pink, and loves Jesus and collects dolls and has perfect social manners. She structures her life choices around the values of the family. She structures her relationship choices around the approval of the family. Now, as an adult, she is dying inside. But no one would ever know it. When you ask her who she is, she will tell you that she is a person with southern values and good manners, who owns a doll collection and likes pink but loves Jesus. Her life has turned into the very picture of success that her parents and that her society had in mind when she was born. She does not know that who she really is, is not who she is. She does not recognize that her personality is nothing more than an adaptation. If we do not know how we feel, what we like and don’t like and what we want and don’t want; we cannot be in a relationship. We cannot be in a relationship (romantic or friendship etc.) because we are not actually present for the relationship. Instead, our false self is present. Our only hope of finding intimacy, having good relationships, living a life that we enjoy, feeling free and not dying inside every day, is to let our false selves go. Our only hope is to find out who we really are. Most of us have been too afraid in the past to question everything we think we know about the world and most importantly about ourselves. We have been so convinced that there will be an unbearable consequence for being our true selves, that we have not taken the risk to be ourselves. We have not yet seen that being ourselves completely is worth any consequence, even losing our families and friends.
This is a crossroads for many of us. It is a crossroads we must come to when we have committed to spiritual practice, or even just to improving our lives. Do we keep up the façade, or do we find out who we really are and admit to it? For the sake of self-discovery, we need to pretend that we have just come out of a coma and that now we know nothing about ourselves. Act as if it is the first day of your life in this body. You do not know what you like and don’t like. You do not know what you believe and don’t believe. You do not know how you feel. Now, reassess your life. When you take a bite of that food, do you like that food? What do you like about it? What don’t you like about it? When you pick out your clothes, how do they make you feel? If this was your first day on earth and you had no pre-conceived notion about other people’s perspective about those clothes, what would you think of those clothes? Do they reflect who you really are? When you spend time with that person, do you like them? It doesn’t matter if they are family and you have always thought that ‘family is forever’. Why do you like them? Why don’t you like them? When you look at yourself in the mirror, who are you really? Are you an artist? It doesn’t matter if you’ve never painted a picture or danced a dance in your life. Are you an artist? Are you a mother? Doesn’t matter if you are actually a mother or if you have no children at all, are you a mother? What do you believe about this universe or God? Throw away your religion and your beliefs for a minute. It doesn’t matter if you have said “I’m a Christian, or “I’m Islamic” all your life, what do you believe about this universe or God? It is ok if the answers to these questions are “I don’t know”. Because at least “I don’t know”, is better than pretending that you do know. It means you have a kind of openness to know the truth about yourself.
As of today, your job is to explore. Your job is to re assess the old things and most especially, to try new things. Cut other people out of the equation. Listen to the way you feel when you think things and say things and do things. You may think you have liked something all your life, only to discover that you don’t really like that thing at all. You may have thought that you believed something all your life, only to discover that you don’t really believe that thing at all. You may have thought you hated something all your life, only to discover that you actually love it. You were just so afraid of the consequence of admitting to how you felt and what you liked and what you believed and who you were, that you have misled yourself. You have built a false self and most likely, you maintained that false self with extreme conviction. You tried to convince yourself and other people around you that you were one way, when you were another. We need to be willing to question absolutely everything we think we know about ourselves in order to really know ourselves. And it will feel groundless and anchor-less in the beginning. It will feel like you are losing your life vest. But this time spent in the unsteady, unknown of the ocean of our lives is worth the experience of landing squarely in and of our true selves. No more torture of pretending. No more trying to be perfect. No more being loved for someone that we aren’t. No more emptiness, no more meaninglessness. It doesn’t mater whether you are 10 years old or 20 years old or 40 years old or 80 years old. Now is the time to be brave. Now is the time to be brave enough to admit to the possibility that you have no idea who you really are. Now is the time to question everything you think you are. Now is the time to let the person you think you are, go. Now is the time to reveal to yourself and to the world, who you really are.

Spiritual Bypassing

Spiritual bypassing is the cancer of the spiritual world. It is a disease that has run rampant in both religious and non-religious circles. Spiritual bypassing (or whitewashing) is the act of using spiritual beliefs to avoid facing or healing one’s painful feelings, unresolved wounds and unmet needs. It is a state of avoidance. Because it is a state of avoidance, it is a state of resistance. I personally, consider Spiritual bypassing to be the shadow side of spirituality.
The spiritual beliefs of any spiritual tradition, be it Christian, Hindu, Buddhist, New Age, Islamic, or even Self Help, can provide ample justification for living in a state of inauthenticity. They can all provide justification for avoiding the unwanted aspects of one’s own feelings and state of being in favor of what is considered to be “a more enlightened state”. Even the non-affiliated and unanimously beloved saying “keep calm and carry on” is in fact a glorification of spiritual bypassing.
Some examples of spiritual bypassing include anger-phobia, exaggerated detachment, emotional numbing and repression, blind or overly tolerant compassion, weak or too porous boundaries, using cognitive reasoning to escape emotional feelings. Debilitating judgment about one's negativity or shadow side, devaluation of the personal relative to the spiritual, avoidance of physical day to day life, delusions of having arrived at a higher level of being and my personal least favorite, overemphasis of and attachment to the positive to the degree that there is a high level of resistance to anything negative. Every religious practice propagates its fair share of spiritual bypassing. For example, Catholic confession, which is expected to just wash away sin and effortlessly alter someone’s negative behavior. Buddhist premature transcendence, which is to act as if one is above and beyond the messiness of life’s drama, when the truth is, one is not. Christian unconditional love, which is to espouse love that is false. It is to say, “I love them” when in truth, one harbors prejudice and resistance to them and only wishes they could learn to love them. Meditation is also frequently used as a form of spiritual bypassing. It is used to avoid uncomfortable feelings and unresolved life situations. For those in denial about their personal feelings or wounds, meditation practice can reinforce a tendency toward detachment, disengagement, or interpersonal distance. Spiritual drugs can be a form of spiritual bypassing.
The use of spiritual drugs can be a tool to avoid getting ones’ hands dirty in the work of resolving emotional issues. It is easier to spend time in an altered state of consciousness than to spent time facing the pain of one’s current state of consciousness. And in the spiritual community, no form of spiritual bypassing has become such a widespread disease as “positive focus”. Here is a prime example of positive focus spiritual bypassing; person A is really struggling with grief because their romantic relationship just ended. Person B feels incredibly uncomfortable about the fact that they are suffering and so, they wish to help the person A avoid those painful feelings. Person B tells person A that she creates her own reality and that she should therefore just quit thinking about what she is thinking about and “be positive” instead. Not only does this condemn the thoughts, which are being thought by person A (and therefore shame them), it also requires them to do something that they are not actually capable of doing. It requires them to jump from a purely negative thought to a purely positive thought; and that cannot be done. It is too far of a vibrational gap to jump. The result is, Person A feels shamed and powerless to their own thoughts. They feel as if where they are, is not ok. There is a big difference between being authentically positive and forcing positivity in order to try to avoid negativity. In today’s world, we have little tolerance for working through our pain. We much prefer instantaneous solutions that involve numbing out pain. Low and behold, Spirituality itself has become it’s own avoidance strategy. When we turn away from our pain or away from “wherever we are”, we abandon ourselves. We resist the very thing we are trying to avoid and so, we guarantee that it will come up in our realities again; only it will come back bigger next time.
Authenticity is the highest state of being for the spiritual practitioner. In fact in the years to come, authenticity will become the replacement for enlightenment as the true goal of spiritual practice. When we use spirituality to whitewash over our issues and try to avoid them, we use the goal of spiritual transcendence to try to rise above the raw and messy and real side of human life before we have fully faced and made peace with it. This can be seen as premature and false spiritual transcendence. It is one of the major pit falls or occupational hazards of walking the path of spirituality. Spiritual bypassing isn’t just an annoying facet of spirituality. It is in fact very dangerous. Why is spiritual bypassing dangerous? It is dangerous because it sets up a major division between the physical self and the higher self. It creates a definable split between where one really is and where one thinks they should be. It enables us to lie to ourselves and delude ourselves and live our lives through the projection of a false self. We cannot heal unless we are willing to admit to where we are and who we are. Spiritual bypassing is like breaking your leg, but being unwilling to admit to it, putting a band-aid over the compound fracture and trying to continue forward anyway. You can easily see how much harm would come to someone physically if they did that. That is exactly the same amount of emotional damage we do to ourselves when we use spirituality to bypass the truth of our emotional self. We need to take time to face and move through and heal our emotional pain in the same way that we need to take time to face the fact that our leg is broken, re-set the bone and spend time healing the leg before we are truly able to move forward.
Spiritual bypassing also leads to a one-sided form of spirituality where one aspect of life is elevated at the expense of its opposite. For example, objective truth (being valued more) is used to invalidate subjective truth. Non-physical is valued over form, 5d is valued and 3d is devalued. Transcendence is valued over physical embodiment, and detachment is valued over feeling. This behavior of valuing one side of polarity over the other gives rise to extremely damaging experiences. For example, one might, try to practice emotional detachment from others by suppressing one’s need for love and becoming independently self loving, but this only drives the need to be loved by others underground, so that it often becomes unconsciously acted out in covert and manipulative ways instead. Being a good spiritual person can become a substitute identity that covers up and defends against an underlying deficient identity. The spiritual idea we have of ourselves is used to whitewash over the truth of our true concept of ourselves, which is that we feel badly about ourselves. We feel that we are not good enough. We feel that we are innately Bad. Then, although we may be practicing diligently, our spiritual practice can be used in the service of denial and defense. And when spiritual practice is used to bypass our real-life human issues, our spirituality becomes compartmentalized. Our spiritual life and practice remains separate and un-integrated with our day-to-day life and our overall functioning. We feel like we have split personality disorder. We can never truly become the embodiment of the higher self, because we are still thinking of our lower self as our lower self, or as our unwanted self. Our spiritual practice cannot ever fully penetrate our life and make us feel good if we are using spiritual principals to avoid ourselves or avoid pain. Ask yourself these questions: Are you avoiding the fact that you feel like you are deficient and not good enough or bad by creating a “persona” of a spiritually transcendent person? Do you use spiritual beliefs to avoid your pain or problems? Do you feel like the spiritual you is different than the embodied you? Do you use spirituality to justify an insecurity within yourself? Do you use spirituality to avoid looking at things in your reality that you would rather think didn’t exist?
Now I’m about to make a bold statement, most of us alive today struggle with spiritual bypassing. Do you want to know how to know if you struggle with spiritual bypassing? You struggle with spiritual bypassing if you espouse, “I create my own reality” and then you worry. You struggle with spiritual bypassing if you espouse unconditional love and feel emotional resistance to someone. You struggle with spiritual bypassing if you espouse the idea that the universe is benevolent and good but then demonstrate distrust for others or the world at large. You struggle with spiritual bypassing if you espouse loving kindness and then berate yourself. If there is any kind of split within you between spiritual principal and the actuality of how you feel or act, then you struggle with spiritual bypassing. And if you struggle with spiritual bypassing, the order of the day is authenticity. We are not just physical beings waking up to our spiritual essence; we are also spiritual beings waking up to our physicality. Physical life is not clean. It is messy. Physical life is a life of contrast. It is an experience that involves both what is wanted and what is unwanted. Spirituality is not an excuse to run away from physical life. The soul is not a justification to deny the human side of ourselves. Spiritual principals are not an excuse to avoid the unhealed aspects of your psyche and your pain. Spiritual principals are not meant to serve as a justification to support your defenses.
In order to avoid the trap of spiritual bypassing, we need to be brave enough to admit to how we feel, what we want and don’t want, what we like and don’t like. We need to be willing to risk admitting to where we are and who we are, even if we think that where we are and who we are isn’t good or ok. If we want to avoid the pitfall of spiritual bypassing, we must express and allow our emotions, wounds, traumas and pain to surface healthily and with compassion.
Make a conscious effort to allow instead of suppress your emotions and not judge them when they arise. We often turn to bypassing to cope with our internal pain and suffering. Examples include addictions to food, drink, drugs, shopping, sex, work, focusing on others and diverting attention away from yourself etc. Make peace with being uncomfortable. If you are numbing yourself inside out this energy lingers and creates a breeding ground for other issues to arise and manifest. Get down to the root of your problems. The journey through life is not always one of bliss. And you haven’t gotten life wrong if you are not in perfect bliss. Sometimes the path through life leads you to breakdowns where you are curled up on the floor in tears.
In order to avoid the trap of spiritual bypassing, we need to apply what we learn to our life. Spiritual and Self help information is relatively abstract. Attending workshops, talks, reading books, going to yoga and meditation classes, etc. are good tools. However, tools are of no use if they aren’t used. Take action by applying what you are learning from these modalities consistently. Integrate them into your life daily. If these ideas remain abstract and merely intellectualized, they aren’t going to help you to create long lasting and permanent change.
If we are to avoid the trap of bypassing, we need to let go of the idea that something must be terribly, “wrong,” or dysfunctional about us if we have problems of negative beliefs or negative feelings or negative thoughts. Everyone has personal, “struggles,” to work through. I mean EVERYONE. When we judge our problems or feelings or negative-ness as wrong, we suddenly have a motive for spiritual bypassing. We make where we are “not ok”. We want to be good and right but we can only achieve that goodness or rightness by being inauthentic. We put on a false façade because of it.
You cannot avoid your pain because you cannot avoid yourself. Anything you try to avoid will haunt you. It will return again and again until it is so large that you cannot avoid it. The thing about spiritual practice, is that we turn to it because we are in pain and we want to feel better. But then all too often, we wind up using spiritual practice as a substitute for facing our psychological issues. When we do this, our spiritual progression is halted. We cannot move forward on our path of spirituality by lying to ourselves any more than we can reach our destination on a map, if we are unwilling to admit to where we are first. For this reason, true spirituality must incorporate the practice of shadow work and if we want to progress, we must face our psychological wounds. If you want to feel better and enjoy your life more, dare to face your pain. Dare to be… Authentic.

Self Trust vs. Independence

All of your relationships are a reflection of your relationship with yourself. The way you feel in your relationships is a reflection of the way you feel in your relationship with yourself. Self help gurus and Spiritual Teachers often teach their disciples this lesson and then proceed to guide people towards total responsibility for the state of one’s own life and relationships. But then, extending this responsibility further, they guide their disciples towards the state of complete self-sufficiency and independence from others. They tell you that everything you need from others, you must provide for yourself. This expert advice tells you that happiness and love should come from within and should never be dependent on what anyone else does or does not do. It tells you that your well-being is not anyone else’s responsibility, it’s your responsibility. It tells you that every person needs to look after himself or herself and that we need to learn to distance ourselves emotionally from others so that we can remain undisturbed by other people.
This modality teaches us that if we can’t keep an even keel, remain emotionally detached from them and be completely independently happy, something is wrong with us and we are enmeshed with others or “codependent”. All forms of dependency are seen as deficiency. Need for other people, is seen as an addiction to other people.
Following this traditional model, one begins to build a model of the world that is for lack of a better word… lonely. We begin to feel as if we are in this life alone and like it is inappropriate to ask others for what we want and need. We begin to believe that it is wrong to rely on other people or depend on them in any way. We are told that if we need other people, it is codependency. From a biological perspective, dependency is not a preference it’s a fact. Putting the fact that we depend on the earth and it’s resources for our survival aside, lets take a look at the biology of relationships. When we become attached to someone, the two of us now form one physiological unit. In truth, we have this relationship with all that is. But it is now proven that our partner is able to regulate our heart rates, breathing and the level of hormones in our blood. Our partner’s availability and proximity to us, influences our stress response. Our sense of differentiation is reduced, even on a biological level when we develop a relationship with them. This reduction of differentiation is the reflection of the fact that when we are in a relationship, we come closer to understanding and experiencing oneness. There is also a psychological phenomenon called the dependency paradox. We act more independent when we have the security of depending on someone else. If you observe a two year old in a new environment, they will crawl around and explore as long as they are assured of the presence of their primary caregiver. If the primary caregiver leaves the room, they will become distressed and insecure and stop exploring. As soon as their primary caregiver returns, they are back to independently exploring the environment. Adults are no different it turns out. If we feel secure that we can rely on the person or people that we are attached to, we are able to take risks, be more creative and pursue our goals. The self-help community and the spiritual community is littered with people whose needs were not met by their primary caregivers and by successive relationships in their life. After all, look at the word self-help. One only turns to self-help when there is no one else there to help them, but themselves. And one turns to spirituality for solace, when that solace is not being provided for them by the physical dimension or by the people in their physical reality. These people already operate under the unhealthy belief that their needs cannot be met by others because they have never known a day when their needs were met by others. They have had to grow up in an atmosphere of survival. And they have figured out that the only way to survive was to disconnect from others, turn inward and become completely self reliant for everything. This is a problem when they still desperately crave intimate connection and symbiosis with others. They must convince themselves not to want what they want and to ultimately avoid what they want. Contrary to popular opinion, these people do not actually trust themselves fully. There is a big difference between trusting oneself and distrusting others. It is very easy for people who have been forced into a position of self-sufficiency to use spiritual truths to bypass this original pain in their lives and use that suppressed grief to justify a state of avoidance to attaching to and depending on others. This belief blinds them to the truth of interdependence and it prevents them from seeing the bigger picture. A bigger picture where the universe is trying to provide us with the opportunity to heal our relationship with ourselves by mirroring the pain contained within our relationship with ourselves through our relationship with others…instead of trying to push us into a state of independent self-sufficiency.
It is also very easy for people who were convinced early in life that they could not trust themselves or rely on themselves, to use spiritual truths of interdependence and oneness to justify a state of turning the responsibility of their lives, over to other people and becoming completely powerlessly dependent on others. They, having abandoned themselves over the course of their lives, are constantly looking for someone to heal the internal loneliness and grief that they feel and “adopt” them. They too, have grown up in an atmosphere of survival. They have figured out that the only way to survive is to completely hook into others, and become completely reliant on others for everything. This is a problem when they still crave an intimate connection with themselves and still crave an empowered state where they can trust themselves. This is a problem when they continue to abandon and avoid themselves when they look for someone else to be there for them. The universe will mirror your resistance to yourself by turning you back towards yourself. The universe will mirror your self-distrust and lack of self-reliance by putting you in situations where you cannot rely on others and must only rely on yourself. We misinterpret this mirroring to mean that the universe is telling us that we cannot rely on others and that it is inappropriate to get our needs met through others. It makes us believe in independence instead of in self-trust. Independence is a hardened state that is closed to others.
Self-trust is a soft state that is open to the self. Independence is a state of resistance to others and resisting the relationship with others. Self-trust is a state of allowing of the self and allowing the relationship with the self. It is not wrong to get your needs met by other people. But when you do not trust yourself and when you are resisting yourself or the way you feel, you will run into the reflection of that. The universe will seem to push you towards self-sufficiency and towards being alone with yourself. You will probably begin to feel like the message is that you are alone and that you can only rely on yourself. It is trying to help you heal by mirroring that you can’t trust others to meet your needs so that you are forced to re-establish the relationship with yourself, be completely with yourself and the way you feel, release resistance to yourself, be there for yourself in your grief or anger or fear, feel empowered in and of yourself and begin to trust yourself.
If you don’t trust yourself, you will continually try to get other people to take responsibility for you and for your life. You will constantly try to get them to “adopt you” by taking up the void that exists where you abandoned yourself. But you are not a match to a person who can do this, if you are in resistance to (and therefore focusing on) running from yourself and resisting the responsibility for yourself. All you will manifest is people you can’t trust and can’t rely on. This forces you to heal the relationship with yourself. If you were running from yourself and resistant to yourself and didn’t trust yourself, and you could manifest a person to take care of you and take responsibility for you and make you feel better and who you could rely on, you would remain incomplete, un-integrated and unhealed forever. That defeats the purpose of life completely.
If you continually try to get other people to take responsibility for you (especially by asking them to make you feel better), you are perpetuating a state of powerless dependence, self-avoidance and self-distrust. The universe doesn’t hate you. You are not alone and the universe is not telling you that you can’t depend on others. The universe is merely trying to put you in a position where you can learn that you CAN trust yourself, be completely present with yourself and depend on yourself. It is trying to help you heal your relationship with yourself by leading you towards a relationship with yourself that is good. To do this, it must lead you away from your current pattern of avoiding yourself by powerlessly depending on others. It is trying to lead you into self-trust and empowered symbiosis.
When it seems like the message that the universe is trying to cram down your throat is that you can only rely on yourself and that you cannot get your needs met by others (which is a message that feels lonely and like the weight of the world is on your shoulders alone), remind yourself that this is not the universe’s message or intention. It is simply the reflection of the fear (and early life experience) that you are alone and that your needs can’t get met by others and that the weight of the world is on your shoulders alone. It is simply the reflection of your resistance to yourself, your resistance to the truth of how you feel and your self-distrust. From there, begin to take more of a proactive and engaged role with yourself (this is what society calls taking responsibility for yourself), not because you are your own burden to bear and you must bear that burden alone and not because the universe values independence, but instead because you will live a happier life if you begin to show yourself that you can trust yourself. Instead of using people to feel better, take time to be completely with yourself and with the truth of how you feel right here and now without trying to change how you feel. Your emotions are valuable. They always have something important to convey. If you avoid your emotions, you avoid the truth of yourself. Taking responsibility for yourself in this way reunites and reintegrates you with yourself. It is only meant provide proof that you can trust yourself. It is not meant to reinforce the belief that you are “in it alone” and “can only rely on yourself”.
It is difficult for people to remove their own pain, fears and negative beliefs from the perspectives that they offer to the world. Sometimes an entire group of people who have had similar painful experiences, propagate a perspective that reflects more fear and pain than love and joy. This is the case with many of the people in the self-help and spiritual community that teach independent self-sufficiency instead of self-trust and symbiosis. The truth is, this is an interdependent universe. When we feel as if we need other people to meet our needs, because we can’t meet our own needs, that means we want to escape ourselves or we do not trust ourselves. If this is the case, it is healthy to learn to reunite with ourselves and take responsibility for ourselves and thus learn that we can meet our needs. When we hate ourselves, and resist ourselves, it is healthy to learn to give love to ourselves. When we are powerless in our dependence on others, it is healthy and empowering to learn that we can be self-sufficient and depend on ourselves. But this has nothing to do with other people. It has nothing to do with whether we can or can’t rely on other people to meet our needs. If we have the tendency to avoid intimate relationships with others and resist interdependence with others, it is healthy to learn that we can depend on others. It is healthy to learn to ask others for what we need and learn that other people can meet our needs if we let them. When we distrust others and resist others, it is healthy to learn to trust others and allow others into our hearts and our lives. When we are ‘independent’ it is good and empowering to learn that you can depend on other people and develop symbiotic relationships with them. The sweet spot of health in this universe rests squarely in the center of two seemingly opposing truths. We live in an interdependent universe, where our needs come to us through other people and things; because in a universe that is one, those other people and things are ultimately US. But because they are us, we are not powerless to those people and things. As creators, we attract those people and things into our lives in the first place. Our relationship with them, is a reflection of our relationship with ourselves and so, we can ultimately trust and rely on ourselves. We are at our healthiest when we have a loving and trusting relationship with ourselves. We are at our healthiest when we are integrated and whole in and of ourselves. We are at our best when we feel enough self-love and self-trust to feel empowered in our own lives because we trust ourselves and our relationship with ourselves to reflect out in our reality as symbiotic relationships with people who are loving, dependable and trustworthy.

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