”In light of the evidence available to us today through various spheres of investigation, philosophical materialism can justifiably be looked upon as an unconscious ego defense mechanism (a shield against cognitive dissonance), a sort of superstition designed to preserve the individual’s limited conception of self at the expense of a vast array of fascinating and factual information. Denial is a nice place to visit but I wouldn’t want to live there.” – Brendan D Murphy
“Who am I? If you think life is a meaningless accident, your perceptions of the complex world around you will likely be biased toward seeing the meaningless and absurd. If you believe in original sin and the great difficulties of finding salvation, your perceptions will likely be biased toward seeing your own and others’ failures. Our beliefs about who we are and what our world is like are not mere beliefs – they strongly control our perceptions. We can gain more control by finding out what we believe and how those beliefs affect us. “
— Prof. Charles Tart in his thought-provoking essay “Who Am I?”
Who am I?
The question is an eternal one. If you don’t answer it, you may never be able to distinguish between what your essential self wants and what other people manipulate you to want. Each of us may do best to answer it for himself or herself. Yet the answers given by others do affect the way we approach (or avoid) this question. Several general types of answers have been offered.
The most traditional answer in Western culture is that you are a creature, a creation of God, a creation that is flawed in vital ways. Conceived and born in original sin, you are someone who must continually struggle to obey the rules laid down by that God, lest you be damned. It is an answer that appears depressing in some ways. One the one hand, it can lead to low self-worth and the expectation of failure. On the other, it can lead to the rigid arrogance of being one of the “elect.” Further, this view doesn’t much encourage you to think about who you really are, as the answer has already been given from a “higher” source.
The more modern answer to “Who am I?” is that you are a meaningless accident. Contemporary science is largely associated with a view of reality that sees the entire universe as totally material, governed only by fixed physical laws and blind chance. It just happened that, in a huge universe, the right chemicals came together under the right conditions so that the chemical reaction we call life formed and eventually evolved into you. But there’s no inherent meaning in that accident, no spiritual side to existence.
I believe that this view is not really good science, but rather what we believe to be scientific and factual. More important, it’s a view that has strong psychological consequences. After all, if you’re just a mixture of meaningless chemicals, your ultimate fate – death and nonexistence – is clear. Don’t worry too much about other people, as they are just meaningless mixtures of chemicals, too. In this view, it doesn’t really matter if you think about who you really are – whatever conclusions you arrive at are just subjective fantasies, of no particular relevance in the real physical world.
Psychologically speaking, this materialist view of our ultimate nature leaves as much to be desired as does the born-into-original-sin view. As a psychologist, I stress the psychological consequences of these two views of your ultimate identity, because your beliefs play an important role in shaping your reality. Modern research has shown that, in many ways, what we believe affects the way our brain constructs the world we experience. Some of these beliefs are conscious. You know you have them. Yet many are implicit – you act on them, but don’t even know you have them.
If you think life in general is a meaningless accident, your perceptions of the complex world around you will likely be biased toward seeing the meaningless and absurd. Seeing this will in turn reinforce your belief in the meaninglessness of things. If you believe in original sin and the great difficulties of finding salvation, your perceptions will likely be biased toward seeing your own and others’ failures, again reinforcing your belief in a self-fulfilling prophecy. Our beliefs about who we are and what our world is like are not mere beliefs – they strongly control our perceptions. So we can gain more control by finding out what we believe and how those beliefs affect us.
Between the traditional religious and materialistic views of who you are, there are a variety of ideas that embrace elements of each which include rich possibilities for personal and social growth. The common element in these other views is that life and the universe do have some meaning and that each of us shares in some form of spiritual nature. Yet they also recognize that something has gone wrong somewhere. We have “temporarily” lost our way. We have forgotten the essential divine element within us and have become psychologically locked into a narrow, traditional, religious or materialist views.
There is an old Eastern teaching story that illustrates this – the story of the Mad King. Although he is actually the ruler of vast dominions, the Mad King has forgotten this. Years ago he descended into the pits of the dankest cellar of his great palace, where he lives in the dark amongst rags and rats, continually brooding on his many misfortunes. The king’s ministers try valiantly to persuade him to come upstairs into the light, where life is beautiful. But the Mad King is convinced these are madmen and will not listen. He will not be taken in by fairy tales of noble kings and beautiful palaces!
We have a lot of evidence in modern psychology to show how little of our natural potential we use and how much of our suffering is self-created, clasped tightly to our bosoms in crazed fear and ignorance. Yet the ministers do carry a light with them when they come down into the cellar, and they do bring the food which keeps the king alive. Even in his madness, he must sometimes notice this. In the real world, events keep occurring that don’t fit into our narrow views, no matter how tightly we may hold them, and sometimes these events catch our attention.
So-called psychic phenomena are like that. They certainly don’t fit a materialistic view, just as they challenge the traditional religious view held by many that this kind of phenomena only happened thousands of years ago, and are thus to be believed, but not pondered.
Psychic phenomena are disturbing to both the traditional religious and materialistic views of who we are. It is one thing to consider abstractly that our true identity may be more than we conceive, or that our universe may be populated with other non-material intelligences. It is quite another thing, with channeling for instance, when the ordinary looking person sitting across from you seems to go to sleep, but suddenly begins speaking to you in a different voice, announcing that he is a spiritual entity who has temporarily taken over the channel’s body to teach you something!
Now you have to really look at what’s going on. Who is that so-called “entity?” Who is that person who channels? If someone else can have his or her apparent identity change so drastically, do we really know who they are? Can I even be sure about who I am? If you have been conditioned to believe that who you are is meaningless or inherently bad or sinful, you might not welcome this stimulation that the phenomena of channeling gives to the question “Who am I?”
We have many ways of psychologically defending ourselves against dealing with things that don’t fit into our organized and defended world. You could just say, “This person is crazy, or maybe even deliberately faking this stuff.” It’s a good defense, for of course there are some people known as channels who are probably just crazy or deliberately faking it. The best lies usually contain a very high proportion of truth.
You could also just naively accept whatever the ostensible channeled entity says. “Yes, you are Master Shananangans from the 17th planet of the central divine galaxy Ottenwelt. Teach me Master, I hear and obey.” This overenthusiastic acceptance can be just as much of a defense against deeper thinking and questioning as overenthusiastic rejection.
Channeling and other psychic phenomena are having a great impact on our culture today. We can use this impact for personal and social growth if we are willing to think about the deeper implications, and examine the things we take for granted about our inherent nature.
If we just believe or disbelieve without really looking, this opportunity will be lost. Read, reflect, examine your own beliefs, argue, go meet some psychics or channels. Perhaps you will decide that they are “real.” Perhaps you will decide they are not “real” in the ordinary sense of the word, but are somehow psychologically or spiritually real or important. Perhaps you will decide that some (or most or all) of this stuff is really crazy. But in the process, you will learn a lot about who you are, and who we are.
Note: The above essay is an edited version of Charles Tart’s foreword to Jon Klimo’s well researched and intriguing book titled Channeling. For a powerful essay inviting you to open to more fluid intelligence and transparency, click here. For excellent evidence that there may be more to ESP than meets the eye, click here.
SOURCE: want to know
Despite the fact that Thomas Campbell totally resonates with me and makes perfect sense in every respect with his words via book or youtube videos, there are those skeptics that just won’t even really hear what he is saying. I think it’s because of preconceived ideas or beliefs acquired during their time spent in their present avatar (ego). He freely shares his information and always concedes that his theory is incomplete and that it is HIS theory, and we should each develop our own intuitive TOE (theory of everything). Concerning the nature of reality, Tom came into my life at just the right time. All the digging through comparative religions, mystery teachings, Gnosticism, Buddhism, anti-mainstream literalistic dogmatic religions, mythicism and all the things I’ve researched the past couple decades seem to be summed (or included) up in Tom’s TOE, with the perfect blend of the much needed scientific and mystic knowledge to derive a solid big TOE . There’s over 230 youtube videos and he posts a new one about every week. His book My Big TOE can be read for free at google books. He is not doing this for money. He has many times said that having an OBE is not that important, so he’s not promising to teach you how to do it. He just says it’s possible for anyone with the proper intent to do so, as well as perform remote healing and remote viewing. But putting that aside and just absorbing his Big TOE is quite amazing. He obviously will have his enemies and debunkers. To me they are the ones that are closed minded and not giving him a fair hearing. They listen to one video and shut him down when their arguments against him are truthfully answered in another lecture. If one were to listen to many of his videos, one would realize he’s not a charlatan with a hidden agaenda. He has other scientists listening and agreeing with him. I hope you get to know him, he is making a difference. The following is from a forum I was reading where a woman asks Tom a question. (Tom never gives a short answer):
Question to Tom: “…..what in your opinion, could your work contribute to the future of Physics”
A very good and reasonable question trying to figure out: “where’s the beef”….. indeed “is there any beef?”
You know, it is difficult to assess the value of your own work objectively. To be valid, verification and general acceptance needs to come from others. To me, it seems perfectly clear though the concepts are very challenging to most who hear them for the first time – other technical people, including physicists who approach my work with open minds generally find that it is logically solid and answers fundamental questions otherwise unanswerable. I live my talk about open-minded skepticism — The skeptical part will feel satisfied and successful – standing on perfectly solid ground — only after physics (science in general) absorbs, embraces and accepts the core ideas in My Big TOE – that’s real validation. But such a major change in attitude and perspective will not come easily or quickly – it will require physicists to rethink their notions of reality from the ground up – to cast aside the beliefs with which they now paint themselves into a corner that does not contain the answer. Trying to change the mind of committed believers has historically been a very difficult thing to do – whether in metaphysics or physics. Cultural beliefs run much deeper than the intellect.
However, the good news is, physics does seem to be moving in that direction – digital physics is a concept that is growing more acceptable by the mainstream. The research describing mind-matter entanglement at prestigious universities like Princeton and Temple (backward causality, modifying random event generators, the placebo effect, anticipatory empathetic reactions, etc.) represent rock solid objective science with immaculate protocol. The fundamental failure of physics in almost 100 years to make any serious progress toward finding a TOE that unites the theories of relativity and quantum mechanics under one more-general set of principles is shouting that the fundamental assumptions of physics are incomplete. The solution to all that is both fundamental and unfathomable is at hand: My Big TOE theory, with just two unremarkable assumptions provides the critical missing ingredient in digital physics (what and where is Dr. Fredkin’s “other”), explains the mind-matter experiments with clear logical science, and unites relativity and quantum mechanics, showing them to be an approximation, a special case of a larger, more general and more complete theory. Just as the “flat earth” assumption was found to be valid for short distances, and Newtonian physics was found to be a special case approximation valid for a limited set of Macro conditions (slow speeds and medium to large sizes).
Once physics sees the logic of it and can outgrow the limiting beliefs that now constrain the traditional solution set such that it does not contain the correct answer, the effect upon our understanding and culture will be as big, if not bigger, than the round earth, Newtonian physics, and relativity and quantum mechanics all put together. (and I think it will one day happen because it is a better theory under the criteria science traditionally uses to determine the worth of a theory). An age of discovery and change will open up the minds and affect the personal lives of hundreds of millions of individuals over a decade – this is science that affects people personally – it is about the point and purpose of their existence – life and death. Science by itself would not have that large of an affect. However, My Big TOE not only delivers a breakthrough in physics but more importantly delivers an even larger breakthrough in philosophy, metaphysics, and theology. It would be hard to overestimate its potential impact on the people of this planet – scientists, philosophers, and theologians all solving their long standing intractable issues of understanding with the same set of overarching principles.
One minor example to make this point seem more real: Most who are seriously committed to religion and who attend my workshops or read the MBT trilogy, tell me that they equate the larger consciousness system with God. It’s a perfect fit for those with a broader perspective of their religion. In their minds MBT derives God – i.e., an understanding of God that explains who, what, why, and how God is – and defines their personal relationship to God with logic and science replacing belief, creed, and dogma. Can you imagine theology where open-minded skepticism replaces belief as the fundamental requirement? I have people telling me they keep MBT and their bibles together on their nightstand?! And that is just theology (the most belief laden and intractable of the four) – the other three: physics, philosophy, and metaphysics are affected no less. If this attitude were to become a widespread concept (MBT does explain theology very nicely – and the fact that it also explains physics very nicely provides vast credibility) what kind of an effect would it have on the world – that is but one potential, one simple example that could contribute to a tsunami of changing attitudes toward the nature of our reality. Do you see the potential and why I said that “It would be hard to overestimate its potential impact on the people of this planet – scientists, philosophers, and theologians all solving their long standing intractable issues of understanding with the same set of overarching principles.” The changes in physics alone would be revolutionary and that would be the smaller part.
This theory is falsifiable. There are literally dozens of experiment that can be done to verify the predicted results. This is real science, not just another wild improvable theory that sounds good if you don’t think about it too hard.
When any of this might happen, I have no idea – perhaps not in my lifetime – it all depends on how the ball bounces – who picks it up and how the knowledge spreads. Who knows, the scientists might not lead this massive cultural change (cultural, scientific, spiritual, growth spurt), instead they may be dragged along by it because they are so committed to their beliefs. Science is the de-facto religion of the West (what most people believe in as being the fundamental source of truth) and science, like religion, has a vested interest in maintaining their belief systems. However, the truth is not fragile – science will eventually, sooner or later, accept it.
I hope this is what you are looking for. In short, here is the potential impact of MBT: this theory could turn physics on its head, produce a broader, more powerful, and more generally correct scientific method (the old one becoming a special case approximation), and advance the level of understanding and productivity of science greatly. It could unify physics, metaphysics, philosophy and theology, solving most all of the outstanding fundamental problems, and all derivable from the same overarching elegantly simple principles based on two easily acceptable assumptions. And that would be the least of it. And because I know that logic, truth and science are what they are, and MBT is what it is, I think one day, when the time is right and people are ready to let go of fear and belief for a better, more productive understanding of reality and existence, all this change will happen because the truth is not fragile – eventually it will become known. Today we are on the cusp of that happening – perhaps even in our lifetime.
(here is a partial review of My Big TOE):
Tom points out that all systems of cosmology posit a mystical beginning. Even our current physics asks us to accept that the Big Bang was uncaused or that what caused it is unknown and unknowable. He uses concepts from modern physics, analogies from information theory and computing to build his Big TOE (Theory of Everything).
As a scientist, he is at pains to say that his TOE (MBT) is a model, not a fixed set of beliefs. He pretty much despises beliefs, whether materialist or religious, because they put bounds on our experience; they tend to turn into dogma and become a prison for the mind. If something happens that does not fit our beliefs, we tend to reject it, often without enquiry. This is no way to make philosophical or evolutionary progress. (Sometimes you can tell from the tone that Tom has had to suffer ridicule from materialists.) So Tom insists that we should not take his model on trust, which is by necessity a work in progress; the last thing he wants is to make a scientological-style religion out of it. Always, we should “taste the pudding”, test it and see how it measures up to our own understanding; and then develop our own version of the model.
Take meditation for example: he recommends that we should try this for two 20 minute (TM mantra) sessions a day for 3 months, whether we wish to attempt OBEs or not. If after that time, we do not notice a difference in ourselves (‘objectively’ tested by other people’s reactions to us, changed opinion of us, and our own improved ability to focus), then we should vary the technique or move on.
When MBT uses analogies from the world we know, these are to be understood as metaphors. Metaphors are, however, peculiarly and particularly relevant to MBT, because Reality is understood to be fractal in Nature. A fractal is a modern mathematical way of saying “As above, So Below”. The same laws and processes manifest in similar ways at different levels of reality.
Ordinarily, we are trapped in the ‘little picture’. Our Physical Matter Reality is one of many similar ‘subsets’ within a ‘superset’ Non-Physical Matter reality. The NPMR superset cannot possibly be understood in terms of one of its PMR subsets. This would be like the two-dimensional beings of E.A. Abbott’s Flatland trying to comprehend the idea of our three-dimensional world.
However, an insightful metaphor can actually help us to transcend the boundaries between realities and so get a glimpse of the ‘Big Picture’. Poets, of course, have always understood this idea.
Occasionally, MBT also mentions the term “hologram”, but this is not developed, presumably because we can’t easily find holograms in nature. It is easier to find fractal patterns and we can readily invoke fractal metaphors.
Read entire review of My Big TOE here: https://sites.google.com/site/iscatusben/review-of-my-big-t
Lots more videos here: https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=tom+campbell
The primary delusion of mankind is our inability to see things the way they really are. Because of a subtle willful blindness we see things in a distorted way. The world is in fact a seamless dynamic unity, a single living organism that is constantly changing. Our minds try to chop it up into separate static bits and pieces, which we then try mentally and physically to manipulate.
One of the mind’s most clever creations is the idea of the person – and closest to home a very special person which each of us calls “I”; a separate enduring ego or self. In that instant this seamless world is cut in two. There is “I” and there is all the rest. That means conflict because “I” can’t control the vastness against which it is set, though it will try, as that is the nature of the “I.”
This isn’t to deny that the notion of an “I” works in the everyday world. In fact we need a solid stable ego to function is society. But “I” is not real in an ultimate sense. It’s a name: a fictional creation that bears no resemblance to what is really the case. Because of this all kinds of problems arise.
Once our minds have constructed the notion of “I”, it becomes our central reference point. We attach everything to it and identify with it totally. We attempt to do what appears to be in it’s best interests and defend it against threats and menaces. We look for ego affirmation at every chance to confirm we exist and are valued. The preoccupation arising from all this absorbs us completely, at times to the point of obsession. However this is a narrow and constricted way of being. Though we can’t see it when caught up in a fit of ego, there is something in us that is larger and deeper; a whole other way of Being.
Reposted from https://hipmonkey.wordpress.com/2014/03/28/i-am/ in an off hand way ….
“My brain is only a receiver, in the Universe there is a core from which we obtain knowledge, strength and inspiration. I have not penetrated into the secrets of this core, but I know that it exists.” – Nikola Tesla
Inner silence is the key to penetrating this core of knowledge in the universe.
Human beings are like onions. We have layers which are mental/emotional energetic layers within us with obscure our genuine self. As children and babies we have no layers. We are pure and unadulterated infinite consciousness. Then as we are filled with information over time, this clutters up our mind and we lose awareness of our inner truth and our natural ability of processing energy (emotional processing) is diminished or halted altogether and we start to form layers and layers of ego.
Ego is our separate, individual identity that manifests itself in contradiction to our universal self. It is formed out of necessity in order to deal with all of this information/energy which we have taken in, but have not processed properly.
This is directly related to our educational system, and how we have learned to live and perceive the world from our parents, teachers, the media, and basically everyone that we have met, simply by observation.
To dissolve the layers of the ego over time we need only to learn to live from inner silence instead of mind.
And by doing so we tap into our innate intelligence, our inner truth, and knowledge will begin to come through us directly from the field. As information comes through us the reverse happens: instead of layers forming that hold us in, our energy radiates, penetrates these layers, pushes them to the surface, and ultimately dissolves them.
When we learn in this fashion we are free to learn from external sources such as books and so on, but eventually we won’t even need those and we will be able to channel all information directly from source. Which is where all books, movies, songs, works of art, and ideas came from anyway.
This shift will not take hundreds or thousands of years, but will occur within a few generations … and this shift has already been underway dramatically for the past century. Just look at how the world has changed. We already see this evolution taking place right now within all individuals.
The information age is occurring now just outside of ourselves, but also within ourselves. We went from print, to being able to download information (books, movies, you name it) from the internet wirelessly in a few short decades. Now in this internal information age we are also going from print to being able to download information within ourselves from the galactic internet also within a few short decades.
All those alive have the potential to make this shift within ourselves if we commit to a meditative, energetic, and consciousness raising practice.
As the energetic layers of your ego are pushed to the surface and dissolved through this practice, you will find not only more intelligence, power, imagination, and stupendous learning and creative abilities within you, you will also resonate more with truth itself. Then you will become completely open to the universe, and the universe will be completely open to you, and we will be one.
Interpreting Energy Through Inner Silence
In order to do this, above all we must empty ourselves and become acutely aware of what is taking place within us. This is done by cultivating inner silence. When we become fixated by the idea of learning from external sources of information as the only way to learn, as we all have been to a certain degree by our educational conditioning, then we disregard the wisdom and true knowledge that is inherent within us all.
There is wisdom and knowledge inherent within each of us, but in order to access it we must unlearn everything that we have learned. We must become open in order for this knowledge to become apparent to us. We do not need to read thousands of books in order to discover this understanding. Just a select few of the right ones in order to make those necessary shifts in our perception along the way. What is more important is that we embody these new perceptual understandings and experience them through inner silence.
When we learn to download information from the field, what we are dealing with primarily is energy. Everything has energy. In fact, everything is energy. And within the energy of everything (from books, to music, to art, to another human being) lies encoded all information about that thing. I believe we can get to a point where we do not need to read a book, we can simply hold the book, feel its energy, and by feeling that energy we can perceive all the information of the book which is encoded within it’s energy.
Much like conversations are encoded within energy to be transmitted through vacuum energy into your cellphone, the same is already true with everything. Everything in the universe radiates energy at a specific frequency and all that there is to know about that thing is encoded within that energy wave.
With our technology we can detect the frequency of objects in the universe, but only with our consciousness can we interpret and decode the information within that energy.
The energy of everything is radiated into the vacuum, and it is available everywhere simultaneously. To read this energy, we must become subtle through inner silence to allow these impressions to become consciously available to us.
It is not a practice of working hard, because the harder we think we have to work to achieve something, the lower the level of consciousness we are operating from and attempting to manifest from. You see, we are already doing this all of the time. This is what our thoughts are. We are tuning ourselves as vibrational beings to a certain frequency with our perception, and then the thoughts that manifest within us from the infinite intelligence of the universe are thoughts which are of the same frequency as the frequency we are tuned to.
To download new information from the field, tune yourself to a higher frequency.This new information will effectively give us a brand new experience of life, of reality, and it will also give us the perception of downloading information from the field because the thoughts and ideas that will come to us will be so new and truly inspiring and intelligent that we may conclude that we are downloading information from the field. But in reality we will be tapping into what was already available inside of us all along.
As Bruce Lipton put it, “we are part of the field being downloaded into our minds and bodies”. We don’t realize that we are already downloading information from the field in each moment because for the most part we are operating at ordinary levels of consciousness.
We are doing the same things day in and day out and we are keeping up a steady stream of thoughts that narrate our life story and the nature of our world to us perpetually. What we have to do is break that narrative with inner silence, and as soon as we open up these gaps we will find new information coming through us.
Cultivate Inner Silence
Raising our vibration and downloading information from the field can therefore be summed up as a singular intention: cultivate inner silence.
It is not something which we achieve, rather, it is something which we accumulate over time. Each moment spent in inner silence builds our reservoirs of inner silence which are never depleted, and which we can always access repeatedly. And the more time we spend in inner silence, the easier it becomes to access this internal state.
From this place of inner silence which is really the experience of ultimate receptivity to the universe, we will over time become so empty that we will reflect the universe in all that we do and in all that we are. By seeking inner silence we do empty ourselves; we empty ourselves of all of the pettiness, anger, self-importance, and worry that defines our ego.
And by emptying ourselves of all that lower energy, we become available for the higher energy of the universe. For we are vibrational beings and when we cease to hold lower energies in our bodies and minds, all that is left is more positive energies which resonate with the higher levels of energy/information in the universe and thus we manifest them. We manifest them in our minds as thoughts, in our bodies as health, and in our lives as abundance, success, and prosperity.
This is the power of inner silence.
All Information is Available Within You
As I briefly touched on in Learning from Within, one of the most important shifts in our self-image and our beliefs which we can make is to begin seeing ourselves as vibrational beings, and understanding that we are not containers for knowledge, but we are knowledge itself.
The universe is defined by a collapse to singularity, and therefore everything in the universe is part of that infinite curvature. (Black Whole Dynamics) As such, everything is one. And because we are energetic extensions of this field, we are literally everything, and we have access to all information in the universe, through ourselves.
Everything that we know is not stored in our brain, but within our mind-field which is non-local. Therefore it is not within us, and if we continue to go off of the assumption that the only way in which to learn anything is from an external source (a book, a movie, speaker) we are denying the most fundamental nature of ourselves and the universe.
The universe is energy, and everything that we have learned is recorded in the universe by our minds as pure energy. When we recall something all that we are doing is tuning ourselves to that energy, and then it appears in our minds. Therefore if we can tune ourselves to new energies spiritually through inner silence and simply becoming available for the universe, we can tune ourselves to any thoughts, ideas, and knowledge that exist in the universe.
The main principle is alignment. This is what we are doing when we sit quietly in meditation: aligning with the universe. If we could train ourselves to sit quietly every day, and refrain from the distractions of television, movies, society at large, and even the majority of our interactions with other people at least for a while, we will naturally come into alignment with ourselves and the universe.
And the end result of this process is that we will clear out all of that disturbance within our mind-field and dissolve the layers of our ego, and we will channel the information, knowledge, and creative self-expression that is unique to us as an individual expression of the universe, and we will call this being ourselves.
Possibly for the first time.
About the Author
Brandon West is the creator of Project Global Awakening. A website dedicated to the research of a variety of scientific and spiritual disciplines, and applying that knowledge to help you live an inspired life and change the world. Follow Project Global Awakening on Facebook, and Twitter.
This article is offered under Creative Commons license. It’s okay to republish it anywhere as long as attribution bio is included and all links remain intact.
There are times in our day-to-day life when we experience ourselves acting or thinking in ways we wish could be different. Sometimes, it can seem like our thoughts are running on auto-pilot, and whoever is doing the driving is not the most qualified person for the job. These thoughts then lead to actions which we regret later. The reason for this is that we often have un-conscious mental and emotional programs running our lives. Maybe these programs are fine for going about our daily interactions with the world, but what happens when they are no longer helping us to live our lives to the fullest?
The First Step: Uncovering That Which is Hidden
Since they are subconscious, these programs do a good job of staying hidden. Consciousness is not something which can be seen or touched, so it can be difficult to pinpoint disharmonious patterns within it. What are the signs that a subconscious mental program is affecting us? Fortunately, these programs leave traces that they are indeed there. These traces come in the form of negative thoughts, or that nagging little voice in the head. Knowing this, we can follow the breadcrumbs of thought to the root of what is running them.
Thoughts can be likened to bubbles in a lake. We can observe the bubbles on the surface, but where they come from is deep down at the bottom. Likewise, thoughts appear at the surface of our mind, but where they come from is deep down, in the realm of emotions. Thoughts are the surface signs of emotions.
We can begin by examining the inner voice we hear in our head, as well as the outer voice coming out of our mouths, and just observe them.
It can quickly be seen that thoughts occur all on their own, spontaneously, like a radio station continually broadcasting into space. If we tune into the mental stream, they become the central focal point; however, try shifting the dial of focus to the space in which these thoughts are occurring. As you do this, you will discover that the thoughts become blended into the background of awareness.
Now, from this space outside of thought, try observing the content of the mind, just don’t get pulled into it. What do you hear? What is the common theme around which the mental chatter is arranged? Is the voice angry? afraid? guilty? Take this chance to be radically honest with yourself – this is not a time to be squeamish!
Step Two: Removing Identification With the Mind
Understand that these thoughts are not even yours, so you do not need to identify with them. Just like a radio tower, the mind is continually broadcasting thoughts. It is what the mind does, continuously and automatically.
To prove that the mind is not even yours, try this: tell the mind to stop thinking and see what happens. The mind will probably just go right on thinking, against your will. If the mind was really yours, you could tell it what to do and it would listen, right? On the contrary, the mind is an impersonal aspect of our human nature.
Bringing humility into our understanding of this is very helpful. It can be very frustrating when one first comes to meditation and realizes how strong the monkey-mind chatter is, but remember: there is nothing wrong with it. It is only doing what it knows how to do. Just because you have negative thoughts does not make you a bad person. You are not your thoughts! This is part of the collective (un)consciousness of humankind. Everyone else has these same kinds of thoughts too; they truly are impersonal.
Step Three: Surrendering the Temporary Emotional ‘Payoff’
Dis-identifying with the mind makes it easier to go further inward to the source of thinking itself: emotions. Subconscious programs are fueled by our emotions, so addressing them from the emotional level is the key to canceling them.
The reason that these dysfunctional programs are running in our consciousness, despite our desire to be free of them, is because they offer us a hidden payoff. They create the illusion that we are getting something beneficial from them, a ‘juice’ if you will. This may not be apparent at first, as one might think, “How is there a payoff from being angry?”
The ‘juicy payoff’ is the emotional reaction; the feeling that moves through us. There is a part of us that finds a temporary pleasure, or satisfaction, in the feeling of anger, guilt, pride, etc. The part of us which feeds off of this juice is commonly called the ego.
The ego easily becomes addicted to the emotional payoff of negative emotions, and in turn feeds off of the juice. Since the juice is only a temporary satisfaction, the ego must seek more of it, thus perpetuating an endless feedback loop. With each infusion of ‘juice’ into the loop, the addiction becomes stronger and thus harder to break free of.
With this realization, it becomes clear that in order to undo negative programming, we must let go of the temporary payoff gained from negative thoughts and emotions. When this payoff is continually let go of, the unconscious program loses its power and influence. The juice becomes less and less interesting to us.
The next time a negative thought or emotion arises, ask yourself, “What is the juice I’m getting from this?” and “Is it worth the price?” If the juice is found to make you feel anything other than peace and tranquility, it is a sign that it needs to be let go of.
In this light, there is no need to fight or suppress anything, even fear and hatred itself. In fact, we can begin to let these emotions just be as they are and run themselves out. We no longer need to be afraid of emotions because we are no longer controlled by the temporary ‘pleasure’ of them.
With this practice of continually surrendering the juicy payoff of the negative emotions, a peaceful state naturally emerges. Peace is what prevails when all of our negative programs have been let go of. In this sense, it can be seen that Peace is actually a choice. When we choose Peace instead of the juice of the ego, our emotional dependence on negativity diminishes. When done continually, this Peace stabilizes and becomes our natural state, undisturbed by the passing temptations of negativity.
About the Author
Ryan Brown is a meditation teacher, energetic healer and writer. He has studied shamanic traditions of the Amazonian Basin and strives to integrate the ancient wisdom teachings of both the East and West in a way that is applicable to modern living. You can learn more about his pursuits at www.wayruna.org