Bones

Phoenesse

This collection is like the bones of a body—a framework around which the remaining body of work can arrange itself. Sure, there’s a lot that needs to be filled in to make it all come to life, but with Bones podcasts, now we’ve got the basic building blocks in place. Plus the words go down like a strawberry milkshake—pleasing to the tongue yet with all the calcium we need for optimum health. read less
Religion & SpiritualityReligion & Spirituality
EducationEducation
ArtsArts
SpiritualitySpirituality
Self-ImprovementSelf-Improvement
BooksBooks

Episodes

1 Emotional growth and its function
Jul 1 2023
1 Emotional growth and its function
To be in harmony, we have to walk straight in three areas: physically, mentally and emotionally. All three sides of our nature must work together, like two people running a three-legged race, for a human personality to find unity through growth. Having any one area underdeveloped will have a crippling effect; it will take the entire personality down. Our feelings are often left in the dust… In every child’s life, there will be circumstances that are unhappy; disappointment and pain are the human common denominator…We each draw a similar conclusion: “If I don’t feel, I won’t be unhappy”…This is one of the most basic wrong conclusions that people draw about life… We bury our feelings in the backyard of our awareness where they stay stuck, destructive and inadequate, even though we have long-ago forgotten we even hid them…But if we don’t let these experiences be felt and moved along, they will stagnate and create a dull climate of vague unhappiness that we’ll be hard pressed to later put our finger on…We shut down the factory of our feelings and along went our intuition and creativity. From there, we limped along on a fraction of our potential, and often, we still don’t realize how big a hit we took… We grabbed a wrong solution like it was scissors—hoping to cut out what hurt—and we ran…This blocking action doesn’t prevent us from feeling the painful feelings forever—it just defers them…So as we grow up, the unhappiness we seemed to have avoided will come to us in a different, indirect way that is much more painful. We will suffer the bitter hurt of isolation and loneliness…We fail to see how we willingly choose our current painful isolation when we chose to defend ourselves this way… If we numb ourselves to any pain, can we truly love? Isn’t love, first and foremost, a feeling?...In the end, we can’t have it both ways, both feeling love and not feeling anything…Whatever blocks us from looking at the negative in ourselves is the exact same thing that’s blocking the love…. There’s nothing inside us we need to run from…Once we move through that first painful release of what we’ve been sitting on all these years, it will feel like a poison has left our system…Old unfelt immature emotions are like a stopper holding back genuine good feelings… We need our feelings to guide us—that’s what well-functioning, mature people do…With strong, mature emotions, we will be able to trust ourselves and find a security beyond what we’ve ever dreamed of… Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 1: Emotional Growth and Its Function Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #89 Emotional Growth and Its Function
2 The importance of feeling all our feelings, including fear
Jul 2 2023
2 The importance of feeling all our feelings, including fear
Our defenses work by blocking access to our emotions, so they choke off our ability to get to our feelings. We’re going to need to lower our weapons…Every tear not shed is a block. Every protest not spoken sits like a lump in our throat, causing us to lash out inappropriately. These emotions feel like bottomless pits... Feelings, which are moving energy currents, will change and transform as long as the energy is flowing. But freezing our emotions stops the movement and therefore stops life, making us feel lazy…When we stagnate, becoming lazy, passive and inert, we desire to do nothing, and then often confuse this state with the natural, spiritual state of just being. But there’s a big difference…We have to feel the fear that’s under the spell of the poppies of our laziness... No matter how undesirable an emotion is, we compound our pain when we won’t feel it, and that secondary pain is all bitter with no sweet…We must commit to go in and through, and not around. Humans, by and large, have a strong preference for going around... We can ask for extra help and guidance, which goes a long way toward loosening up some of that stagnant matter. It’s like a rototiller for the soul…It may seem counterintuitive, but we’re more in touch with ourselves when we admit our fear than when we deny it…We won’t realize that the fear is not real—it’s truly an illusion—until we feel it and go through it... We'll find our strength by feeling our weakness; we find pleasure and joy by feeling our pain; we find true and justified hope by feeling our hopelessness; and we find fulfillment right now by accepting the lacks of our childhood. If we walk through these gateways, we’ll step into life…Any spiritual path that encourages us to reach the Holy Grail without going through the weeds is full of wishful thinking. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 2: The Importance of Feeling All Our Feelings, Including Fear Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #190 Importance of Experiencing All Feelings, Including Fear – The Dynamic State of Laziness
3 The Higher Self, the Lower Self, and the Mask Self
Jul 3 2023
3 The Higher Self, the Lower Self, and the Mask Self
One of the subtle bodies in every living person is the Higher Self, or divine spark. The higher one’s spiritual development, the faster these vibrations will be…Ever since the Fall of the Angels, our Higher Self has gradually wrapped itself in various invisible layers of more dense matter that is somewhere in between the density of the physical body and the Higher Self. Say ‘hello’ to the Lower Self… The Lower Self, which also varies from soul to soul, is made up of our faults and weakness, along with laziness and ignorance. The last thing it wants to do is change and rise above itself. It always wants to have its own way, without having to pay any price for this… There is another layer that is quite significant but often overlooked, that we could call the Mask Self. We create this false covering because we realize we’ll likely bump into trouble with our surroundings if and when we give in to our Lower Self…Our mask is not our divine spark, although we’re hoping others will believe that it is, and it’s not our Lower Self, although we’re hoping it will work to cover up our shadow side. It’s phony. And it’s fake. It’s not real… The mask can be sickeningly sweet. For an artist, it would be the difference between a good, genuine color and artificial coloring. It’s like the word we use to describe bad art: kitsch… When a thought or intention emanates from the Higher Self, it often gets polluted by tendencies from the Lower Self…Whenever the right act is not supported by purified feelings, there is a war going on within…Self-deception is one of the hallmarks of being a human… We are alienated from ourselves—we’ve lost our connection to the truth of who we are…We convince ourselves that we’re not really selfish, fooling ourselves about what we really feel and our twisted motives, not wanting to see what’s what. After a while, this mess sinks down out of our awareness and starts to ferment…We actually convince ourselves that we need to be selfish, which is not in alignment with our true nature. So we’re living a lie…Being true to ourselves, though, doesn’t mean we give in to our Lower Self. Rather, we need to become aware of it… It will be far easier to face our Lower Self if we realize that underneath it lives our Higher Self. That’s the absolute reality of who we truly are and ultimately we are going to reach this part of ourselves…We have to fight for enlightenment. If we’re not willing to do this, let’s at least not deceive ourselves. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 3: The Higher Self, the Lower Self, and the Mask Self Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #14 The Higher Self, the Lower Self, and the Mask
4 Three basic personality types: Reason, will and emotion
Jul 4 2023
4 Three basic personality types: Reason, will and emotion
Our spiritual work, which comes in answer to our prayers, arrives in the form of a conflict or a friction which then activates some combination of the three personality types in us. Something happens that makes us feel we’re being treated unjustly, so we will have a chance to recognize our inner errors and purify our souls…The moment we say a prayer asking for help and strength, all hell is going to break loose. That’s when we know our prayers are being answered…Yet we think the frictions in our lives have nothing to do with us… Any prayer to know the truth will always be answered—if we knock, the door will be opened—and the newly arriving recognitions will cancel out the disharmony, our feelings of injustice, and our misery and defiance. Frictions with our brothers and sisters will then melt like snow in the sun; we will unite with understanding and with love. There is no other reason for life on Earth than to do this, and it’s never too late to begin… If we are the Reason Type, we govern our lives primarily using the reasoning process, making us prone to neglecting our emotions. Frankly, we’re afraid of our feelings so we thwart them. In doing so, though, we cripple one of our most important faculties: intuition…The Reason Type tends to miss out on a lot of life experiences due to fear and pride. Because we basically fear any emotions that might lead to an experience we don’t think we’ll be able to handle…We, the Reason Type, like to keep everything in shipshape order, always “knowing” where we stand. But avoiding emotions leaves us adrift from our core… The Emotion Type is equally one-sided. We pride ourselves in being capable of truly feeling, so while we may find it easier to connect with inner divinity, we easily become carried away by our emotions…As Emotion Types, we secretly look down on Reason Types, perhaps derogatorily labeling them “intellectuals” and losing sight of the fact that reason is as God-given as emotions…If we’re an extreme Emotion Type, we will impact our surroundings with our uncontrolled emotions… None of us can exist without the use of our will, and the Emotion Type uses will in a chaotic and impulsive way, without careful consideration…Our will should always be the servant and never the master. So ideally, our will should equally serve our emotional, intuitive faculties and our reasoning processes. But the Will Type makes a master out of the servant, which pulls us out of focus in a dangerous way…If we’re a Will Type, we will tend to throw caution to the wind, losing sight of the many essential considerations needed to discover the truth in any situation… In their highest state of perfection, the Reason Type is the Angel of Wisdom, the Emotion Type is the Angel of Love and the Will Type is the Angel of Courage. These three basic personality types are all aspects of divinity that each of us can develop, and which can all work together in harmony…For most of us, we’ll see how two of three faculties dominate and a third is crippled…We’re wrong in thinking that our extreme is better than the other extremes. Extreme is extreme, and it’s never in the middle of the road, which is where we want to be. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 4: Three Basic Personality Types: Reason, Will and Emotion Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #43 Three Basic Personality Types: Reason, Will, Emotion
5 Intellect and will as tools or hindrances to self-realization
Jul 5 2023
5 Intellect and will as tools or hindrances to self-realization
An important difference between our superficial intellect and our real self is that we can direct, manipulate and govern the intellect using our will; we can’t do this with the real self. Of the two, the real self is the more intelligent one. We are conditioned to put a laser-like focus on the use of our thinking ability and willpower. So we believe we can reach self-realization through an act of sheer will; we think we can use our minds to develop spiritually…It’s our real self that connects with the living spirit of a word, whereas unfeeling repetition comes from our intellect… If we boil it down, what obstructs the real self are our layers of confusion and error/ On top these sit our lack of awareness about our confusion and errors…What intellect and will can be used for is cleaning up the errors and confusion that they themselves have created…When we know we are confused, we are closer to our real self than when we are blind to our inner confusion, even if we don’t have any solutions to our problems... So what, we should turn off our brains? Not at all. To do the arduous work of following a spiritual path, we want to use our intellect to understand our errors and confusion, and to see how we have misdirected our will. Doing this will indirectly birth our real self, with all its spontaneity and creativity, into our reality…We have to understand our current situation if we ever hope to grow out of it. We can’t struggle our way out by covering up what we don’t want to see... Trying to reach the mountaintop of the higher state of being by using intellect and willpower causes us to construct images—wrong conclusions—of how we think we should be and of how life should be, according to our limited past experiences…We can’t force ourselves to love. We might think we can, but in reality we can’t. Which doesn’t mean we don’t love… So we can’t just make up our minds that we’re going to be good people who love and have compassion and humility. We can, however, make up our minds to figure out what’s causing us to not be all that…What we don’t realize is that if we were to see ourselves as we really are, we would see that there’s nothing to fear. We need to realize that hanging on for dear life won’t bring us to the doorstep of the real self. We simply cannot find ourselves that way… In truth, we always self-produce our misery. No matter what we may think or how much we want it to be otherwise, it’s always an inside job. And so too is finding the solution…The problem isn’t one of morals… Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 5: Intellect and Will as Tools or Hindrances to Self-Realization Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #104 Intellect and Will as Tools or Hindrances to Self-Realization
6 The origin and outcome of the Idealized Self-Image
Jul 6 2023
6 The origin and outcome of the Idealized Self-Image
There’s a direct correlation between being unhappy and not believing in ourselves; our self-confidence takes a hit that is proportional to how badly we feel. Our idealized self-image is supposed to avoid all that by supplying the missing self-confidence. This, we think, by way of our unconscious reasoning, will lead us straight down the road to pleasure supreme… We simply can’t be more than we really are in any given life situation…What we can do is have a genuine desire to better ourselves, which leads to accepting ourselves as we are right now…Once we’ve done a significant amount of personal work, we’ll start to see the difference between feeling a genuine desire for gradual improvement, and the pretense of the idealized self that just wants to click some ruby slippers together now and look better… The very notion that, as human beings, we can be perfect is an illusion…Since our nutty standards are impossible to reach—and yet we never give up trying to uphold them—we create an inner tyranny of the worst kind. We don’t realize just how impossible our demands are and we never stop whipping ourselves to meet them, so we feel like complete failures when we prove, once again, that we fall short…Someone or something else must be to blame for our failure… The idealized self is a phony, rigid face that we invest with our real being. But it’s an artificial construction that will never come to life. The more we invest into it, the more strength we sap from the center of our being…Only by seeing what’s going on can we color inside the lines of our being, and fill in our missing sense of self… Believe it or not, our feelings will become every bit as reliable as our intellect. This is what it means to find ourselves…The idealized self wants to be perfect right now. The real self knows this isn’t possible, and this doesn't bother it one little bit… From our real self, we function from our wholeness, instead of from “hole-ness”…When we learn that we can squander ourselves into life, the same way that nature squanders herself, we will then know the beauty of living… In reality, having genuine self-confidence gives us peace of mind…Remember that no one can do this work alone. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 6: The Origin and Outcome of the Idealized Self-Image Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #83 The Idealized Self-Image
7 Love, power and serenity in divinity or in distortion
Jul 7 2023
7 Love, power and serenity in divinity or in distortion
There are three major divine attributes—love, power and serenity—that in the healthy person work as a team. They maintain flexibility amongst themselves so one never drowns another out…But when they are in distortion, they step all over each other. Then love, power and serenity get distorted into their evil twins: submission, aggression and withdrawal… In our efforts to master our difficulties, largely created in childhood and then perpetuated into adulthood through our wrong solution choices, we find ourselves increasingly bound up by the straightjacket of a vicious circle…It never occurs to us that our real problem is the solution we have chosen… For a child, it is valid to need to receive protective love. But if such a need is carried over into adulthood, it’s no longer valid…When we’re so dependent on others for love, we become helpless; we won’t stand on our own two feet…These attitudes become so ingrained in us, it’s like they’re part of our nature. But they are not… When a person is inclined to choose love, or really submission, as their pseudo-solution, they have the basic feeling that ‘if only I were loved, then everything would be OK’…We cringe and we crawl, complying with others demands—whether real or imagined—and selling our soul in an attempt to get the help, sympathy, approval and love we crave…We use a fake weakness as our weapon in the battle to finally master life and win… To avoid getting caught, we hide all this falseness behind the mask of our idealized self-image: we put on a Love Mask…We submit as a way to dominate…It’s not hard to imagine that living this way will keep us estranged from our real self…Our conclusion: the world takes advantage of our “goodness,” abusing us and stopping us from reaching self-realization…Being submissive is a caricature of what real love looks like… In the second category is the pseudo-solution of seeking power through aggression. Here we think that the answer to all our problems lies in having power and being independent…We believe the only way to stay safe is by becoming so strong and invulnerable that no one and nothing will be able to touch us. Then we cut off all our feelings…Warmth and affection, communication and caring for others—all these are despicable… The power type is just as dishonest and hypocritical as the submissive type, because in truth, everyone needs warmth and affection. Without these, we suffer…Power seekers are wired to never fail. Ever…We will always be competing and trying to one-up everyone... The Power Mask requires us to live more independently from feelings than a human being possibly can. So we constantly feel like a failure for not living up to our ideal self…Our pride sticks out like a sore thumb. Heck, we’re proud of our pride…We, the power type, will take pride in how “objective” we are, as opposed to being gullible. And that, we say, is why we don’t like anyone…To show our true loving nature then is a crass violation of all we stand for, and doing so brings on deep shame… We often choose the pseudo-solution of withdrawal when first two options have so torn us apart that we had to find a way out…Underneath our withdrawal is a false attempt at serenity… Both the power type and the withdrawn type have something in common: aloofness…Whereas the power seeker likes being hostile and glorifies their aggressive fighting spirit, the withdrawal type isn’t even aware of having such feelings… Our underlying conflicts rise up with a vengeance, showing just how artificial our serenity really was; turns out, we built the whole structure on sand…As always, we will fall woefully short of the dictates of our Serenity Mask, leading to self-contempt, guilt and frustration… If we start to view our problems and our emotions in this ligh
8 How and why we recreate childhood hurts
Jul 8 2023
8 How and why we recreate childhood hurts
Children have more than just a desire to be loved; they want to be loved exclusively, without any limits. In other words, every child’s desire for love is unrealistic…Since they seldom receive an adequate amount of warmth and mature love, children remain hungry for it throughout their whole life…Essentially everyone—even the most diligent spiritual seekers—overlooks just how strong the link is between the unfulfillment of our childhood longings and our present-day problems. This isn’t just a nice a theory… They may not have been as perfect as we thought and hoped they’d be back then. But there’s no reason to now reject them because they had their own immaturities and inner conflicts…Once we’re free of this repetitive cycle, we’ll stop crying over the spilt milk of not getting love the way we wanted it…We need to release the pain we feel now, which is attaching to the hurt of then. Next we’ll see how we thought we had to choose this situation or admit defeat… We can turn our painful feelings into healthy growing pains whenever we become ready to rid ourselves of the bitterness and tension we’ve been hiding…Forgetting and forgiving will become a real thing that we won’t even have to think about doing. They will naturally occur… Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 8: How and Why we Recreate Childhood Hurts Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #73 Compulsion to Recreate and Overcome Childhood Hurts
9 Images and the deep, deep damage they do
Jul 9 2023
9 Images and the deep, deep damage they do
From practically the time we were born, we have been creating our own impressions about this thing we call life. The only problem is, most of the time our conclusions are wrong…They are based on a certain limited child logic, but they are nonetheless in error. As we grow up, these wrong conclusions and the attitudes they spawn sink out of our awareness where they set in and start molding how our life will look…The word the Guide uses to refer to these wrong conclusions is an “image”… When we form conclusions about life that are free from error, our positive, healthy beliefs are flexible and relaxed; they flow harmoniously and adapt spontaneously to life’s changes. An image, on the other hand, is stuck in the mud and congested; an image won't zig when life zags… Since images don’t entirely make sense, they can’t stay in our conscious mind. But the more hidden they are, the more potent they become, because then there’s absolutely nothing pushing back on them. They have free reign…The list of damages caused by an image is practically endless…Ding, ding, ding—here’s another way to know an image is in the house: when there’s a repetition of incidents we didn’t ask for and don’t want. Images always form patterns…We draw people and events to us like bees to honey on account of our images… It’s entirely possible to have a legitimate desire that we speak out into the world, but we have a polar-opposite image that blocks it…The spiritual aim of all personal self-development is purification, and we can’t become purified if we don’t understand and gain some control over our own unconscious…We won’t find our way through the maze of this inner landscape if we ‘just try harder’. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 9: Images and the Deep, Deep Damage They Do
10 Unpacking the pain of our old destructive patterns
Jul 10 2023
10 Unpacking the pain of our old destructive patterns
So let’s talk about pain, and more importantly how to dissolve pain caused by old patterns…The climate we grew up in affected us—it was like perpetually receiving a minor shock…We suffered and believed our suffering was unchangable, which conditioned us to create defenses—highly destructive defenses…We repressed the original frustration and pain we couldn’t deal with. And we put it out of our awareness, where it still smolders in the unconscious mind…Our defense mechanisms of aggression, submission and/or withdrawal fully developed…Our images are also a form of defense. They create by-now old patterns designed to fight against painful experiences. They do this by erecting a rigid wall constructed entirely from wrong conclusions… For those of us who have opted for the pseudo-solution of withdrawing, we’re defending ourselves against being hurt…Dollars to donuts, if our strategy is to make ourselves deliberately weak, we are actually wanting to lord ourselves over others…It’s plain to see that being weak is hardly harmless; it doesn’t hurt anyone any less than being outrightly domineering…In every case, we hurt others while also rubbing salt in our own wounds… Thanks to the law of cause and effect, hurting others is not a zero-sum game; there will be consequences. So not only have we done nothing to mitigate the original pain, we’ve invited more of it. Nice work, everyone… Rather than abandoning our limping pseudo-solutions and old patterns, we wrap them into our idealized self-image, whose agenda is to make us feel better than everyone else…Since the nature of the idealized self is falseness and pretense—we act perfect since we can’t be perfect—we feel alienated from ourselves, from others and from life. Another winner, if ever there was one…We’ll come to realize that pain feels a whole lot better than being alienated from ourselves and feeling numb… Once we’ve gone through all this, emptying our inner well of what is old and immature, then constructive patterns can find a solid foundation…Whatever we must travel through is a growing pain that brings us to our final destination: a strong, self-reliant, full life. In the end, the payoff is actually worth all the effort…Once we learn to cope with mishaps and missteps, they won’t have the power to break us… But what hurts so much presently is really the pain of not feeling fulfilled now, which is a result of our unsuccessful destructive old patterns…Spoiler alert, here’s what we’re going to find: beneath all our various “protective” layers is a pile of unmet needs that we don’t have a clue about…Realize, it is not childish or immature, per se, to need to be loved. It’s only so when we refuse to grow in our ability to give love that we lock out and cover up our real need to receive love…We can now see that no unkind God is punishing us or neglecting us. We have brought our problems upon ourselves through our own unrealistic attempts at running away. So if we did that, we can do something different. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 10: Unpacking the Pain of our Old Destructive Patterns Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #100 Meeting the Pain of Destructive Patterns
11 Our habit of transferring our splits onto everyone
Jul 11 2023
11 Our habit of transferring our splits onto everyone
We’re here because planet Earth is a perfect match for the negativity remaining in us; it offers conditions compatible with our inner landscape, our inner splits. We’re confused about reality and we have a headful of crazy concepts…Where this prevails there’s always conflict. This is due to split concepts that divide the psyche and don’t arise from the truth …So Earth is nothing more and nothing less than a classroom for people with splits. Take a look around and we can see the opposites of duality everywhere. There is man and woman, day and night, life and death. This is one way Earth pairs up the halves of two-way splits… We can see evidence of our splits right there in the symbolism of having two parents. If our psyche is largely free and healthy, we will have a set of parents we think of as an asset. But for some, our negative involvement is still pegging the meter. Then our parents will each bring out one side of our split…If we look at everything we’ve managed to surface so far, including our main image and defenses, our conflicts and faults, they will reveal the basic inner attitude that is governing our life. And this attitude is always split down the middle. Meaning we fluctuate back and forth between two essentially opposite ways of reacting…When this realization starts to gel, we’ll see that our parents represent our two fundamental attitudes…. There was no way for us to work this out before we got here. So our parents, who bring our unmended splits out into the open, couldn’t possibly be responsible for our problems…This basic conflict is so deep, it’s existence is the reason we have the human experience. But it’s not inaccessible… We go through life, then, reacting to the person in front of us, not as them but as if they were our parents…Whenever we are negatively involved with someone, we can be sure our split is a factor in the fireworks…We firmly believe in something that isn’t true. And then we reinforce our belief, so our split cracks open even wider… Lack of awareness is truly a prison that makes life not worth living because we feel caught between a rock and a hard place. We adopted a certain way of reacting to our parents, and now we keep responding that way and getting the same poor results…The way out is through awareness that we are living in a trance…Once we break this mold, new experiences can materialize. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 11: Our Habit of Transferring our Split onto Everyone Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #118 Duality Through Illusion – Transference
12 Finding out the truth about ourselves, including our faults
Jul 12 2023
12 Finding out the truth about ourselves, including our faults
If we apply these teachings to our lives, they will work for us in finding out the truth. There is nothing we must believe…If we want to become capable of experiencing genuine happiness, we must learn how to course-correct back into alignment with spiritual laws… None of this can happen by merely concentrating on our outer problems. We must look deeper and find the corresponding inner problems, which always, always, always are the cause of the outer ones… Expressing our love for God in our beautiful prayers and profound meditations is a wonderful thing. But we must also do the work. And what is “the work?” Just this: to master the Lower Self…As long as we don’t recognize how our Lower Self works, it will continue to rule the roost, hiding behind handy excuses and cloaking its devious ways… We might perform a nice act and check the box on good-deeds-done-for-today, but if our actions aren’t supported by good, clean feelings, this doesn’t count for much…We will need to learn to grapple with the unconscious mind, which is where the Lower Self operates… Every fault we harbor stands like a brick wall in the way of unfolding pure loving feelings or insight or understanding. It’s in this way that we do indeed do harm to others. All the livelong day…Another equally impactful hindrance is our fears, which we generally don’t put in the same category as faults…Our fears are like a wet blanket on our inner light of love and understanding; after all, when we are in fear, we are not in truth. So on this path of purification, we will not only come face to face with our faults—our character weaknesses—we will need to face all our fears… Asking another to tell us how they see us, especially our faults, is tricky business…The best approach is to go with the one who knows us best…We can ask for guidance in receiving unpleasant truths from others. So then their input can be used in a productive way…If our wish to overcome our faults is sincere, we will have made the very best beginning one could imagine… For certain, this path is a difficult one. But God is not the one making it so hard…We must never lose sight of this truth: everything we suffer from in life results from—directly or indirectly—our shortcomings and our fears. If we had no shortcomings, we would have no fear. And our fear and insecurities are what make us so miserable. They spoil everything. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 12: Finding Out the Truth about Ourselves, Including Our Faults Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #26 Finding One's Faults
13 The ubiquitous faults of self-will, pride and fear
Jul 13 2023
13 The ubiquitous faults of self-will, pride and fear
There is one fundamental quality that is the core element of who we are…This means that each one of us have kept a kernel of perfection—our original nature—basically intact in our core essence, although it’s now covered by the Lower Self and layer upon layer of imperfections. So we have two missions. One is to sense what our basic light is, and the other is to realize how these three buzzkills of self will, pride and fear collude to cover it up… They are the fundamental blockers of our essential light…We must see the role that each of them plays and not buy, for one minute, the notion that this trio applies to ‘everyone but moi’… Self will wants what it wants, when it wants it. It will strive to have its way, regardless of who or what it has to mow over to get it. It doesn’t even care if it brings hardship and imprisonment upon the self in the process…Self will, then, is both blind and immature, and it works in opposition to spiritual law as much as in violation of human laws. And it really doesn’t care… How then does our self will connect with fear? Well, if we’re sheltering a truckload of self will—often extra-powerful because it is lurking in our unconscious—we’re going to live in perpetual fear that we won’t get our way…The problem isn’t that this is true; the problem is our warped perspective that this is necessary… We’re snagged on pride when our ego thinks we’re more important than other people, so we want advantages for ourselves…If we feel another’s humiliation counts for less than our own, we have too much pride. And who among us hasn’t thrown someone else under the bus to save our own hide?...We need to not take ourselves so seriously. Our pride doesn’t matter half as much as our overly self-important little ego would have us believe…Only when we’re ready to stand on equal footing with others will we be free of fear… It’s not hard to see then how self will and fear go hand-in-hand. It’s equally simple to see how pride and self will are birds of a feather…We’re super-quick to blame the faults and imperfections of others, making them responsible for our own inner disharmony. But maybe one day, we’ll realize there isn’t anyone else to blame… For as long as we’re ensnared in self will, pride and fear, we can never be happy. It’s not possible…In knowing this, we hold a treasure: we have the key to fixing all our problems. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 13: The Ubiquitous Faults of Self-Will, Pride and Fear Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #30 Self-Will, Pride and Fear
14 Exposing the mistaken image we have about God
Jul 14 2023
14 Exposing the mistaken image we have about God
As children, we learned that the highest authority—even higher than Mom & Dad—is God. So it’s not a surprise that we bundle up all our painful subjective experiences with the Ones-Who-Say-No, and dump them on God. Presto change-o—a God image has been created… As kids, authority figures were forever popping up everywhere. And when they stopped us from doing whatever it was we enjoyed most, we viewed them as hostile…To whatever degree we experienced fear and frustration, to that same degree we’ll fear and be frustrated by God…For many people, God is punishing and severe. We might also believe that God is unfair and unjust—a contrary force we must grapple with... Before we know it, we will have grown an inner image of God that makes him out to be a monster…Believing this to be true, we turn away from God altogether, wanting nothing to do with that monster in our minds…This, folks, is often the real reason someone turns to atheism… When doting parents give in to every whim, they don’t instill a sense of responsibility in the child…In such a person’s eyes, God will let us get away with anything, so we can cheat life and skip out on responsibilities. Certainly, we might know less fear, but since life can’t be cheated, our wrong concept is going to take us down a road to conflict… Our personal God-image will in some way be a combination of these two main categories…Because our God-image is so basic it taints all our other attitudes about life. It pushes us into hopelessness and despair, believing we live in an unfair and unjust universe, and also launches us into self-indulgent behavior where we reject self-responsibility because we expect God to pamper us… These submerged ideas must get pried up from the muck of our unconscious thinking…This is not a quick-fix process…We can give ourselves time to adjust, while we keep holding our own feet to the fire of truth…Emboldened by our Lower Self, our emotions will resist changing…So prayers will be important…Our emotions will gradually grow up and out of previously erroneous reactions… If we want to know the truth but aren’t all that committed to overcoming our resistance to it, then at least we should realize that we’re the ones obstructing the light and our own freedom, not God…The realization that cause and effect is on us, not an angry or indulgent God, is one of life’s main breaking points…And it’s that breaking point alone that could release us from this notion that we’re a victim…The laws of God don’t turn us into puppets—quite the opposite, they make us whole and set us free… Clearly, talking about God is not easy. And yet, we must try. One major stumbling block for all of us is that we think about God as a person…God is; he (she, it, they) just is…Among other things, God is life. And God is also the force that enlivens life…Through us and all around us flows this powerful “electric current;” it’s up to us how we want to use it… The way spiritual laws work, the more we deviate from them, the more we live in a misery that causes us, at some point, to turn around and realize that we ourselves are the source of our misery, not God and his laws…To love the laws is to love God…Nestled in these loving laws is God’s willingness to let us deviate from divine laws, if we wish…No one is forcing us to live in light and bliss. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 14: Exposing the Mistaken Image we have About God Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #52 The God-Image
15 Learning to speak the language of the unconscious mind
Jul 15 2023
15 Learning to speak the language of the unconscious mind
We have both a conscious mind, the stuff we know, and an unconscious mind, the stuff we don’t know we know. The unconscious is by far the stronger of the two…The unconscious should be credited with far more than it typically is…It’s what controls our fate…Fate is nothing other than the events that occur due to the governing forces of our unconscious. It’s the tiger and we’re the tail… The black hole of our unconscious includes our petrified wrong conclusions about life, our destructive patterns of behavior, and our negative emotions caused by our unresolved problems. All this we have stuffed down in there and forgotten about…Our unconscious is a repository for the constructive building blocks of the universe too—unending creativity, utter wisdom, divine truth and love. Yessiree Bob, it’s all in there… Let’s now learn how to go about interpreting the language of our unconscious in our daily lives…Knowing this particular language will do more for us than knowing a dozen foreign Earth-languages… The universe is made up of two main currents: a yes-current and a no-current. The yes-current contains all the good stuff; it aligns with truth and it breeds love and unity. The no-current deviates from truth and is destructive; it breeds hate and disunity…Of the two currents, we tend to spot the yes-current more readily because it is mostly conscious. But when we bump up once again against a persistent unfulfillment, we can be sure that there are both a yes-current and a no-current at work, effectively cancelling each other out… The more we squelch the no-current, thinking this will drive it out of existence, the more we simply drive it further underground where no logic can oppose it. This is how it becomes more powerful than the conscious yes-current. This also causes the yes-current to become more urgent and frantic…The way to defuse all this is by surfacing the no-current, listening to its faulty premise, and gradually letting go of the mistaken belief that it needs to continue… What we need to do is circle back to doing our Daily Review, doubling up on our efforts to detect the no-current. If we don’t do this, it may be almost too elusive to catch…We’ll start to see how we cringe slightly at the thought of having fulfillment within our grasp…Maybe we’re not willing to pay the price for having it. Maybe we don’t feel we deserve happiness. The problem could be any combination of these things… Simply becoming aware of the perpetual drip of our no-current—even before we understand what it’s all about—will deliver much-needed relief from the water torture of our hopelessness…We’ll pinpoint where our hostility is smoldering, artfully camouflaged or explained away by the easy-to-blame provocations from others. These are the mechanisms we need to learn about, because they are the language of the unconscious. To successfully spot them is to successfully decipher the code of this ancient dialect…This is how we crack the no-current… We can start to look at frustrations and difficulties as helpful pot stirrers. For if nothing ever happened to stir the pot of our unconscious, obstructions would lay there like petrified wood…Once we start saying yes to finding our no, we’ll establish a link with our unconscious mind, which includes the deeper, wiser part of us…When we observe ourselves in a calm and cool sort of way, without a lot of frantic hand waving, we’ll be able to translate the language of the vaguely-felt unconscious into articulate words…We don’t need to go through crazy gyrations looking for unicorns. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 15: Learning to Speak the Language of the Unconscious Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #124 The Language of the Unconscious
16 How pleasure gets twisted into self-perpetuating cycles of pain
Jul 16 2023
16 How pleasure gets twisted into self-perpetuating cycles of pain
Self-perpetuating cycles of pain are what result from the conflict created when two creative forces go in opposing directions inside us…Naturally, everyone’s favorite direction is toward the light…But in reality, this is a world in which there are forces that oppose the light… Take, for instance, the physical level. The entire physical being is striving for health and wholeness. When there’s a disturbance that pulls the other way, we feel pain…If we were aware that in addition to our desire for health, we have a hidden desire for non-health, the struggle would go away. For we’d be hard pressed to hang onto a desire to be unhealthy if we were consciously aware of it… So what’s really clogging up the works is the stuff in our unconscious; this is what creates the seeming gap between cause and effect…The cause, then, is the hidden negative wish; the effect is that there’s a disturbance in our system. The end result? Self-perpetuating cycles of pain… There is another plane of existence, the spiritual plane…Since the spiritual plane is where the positive direction originates, this plane doesn’t contain a negative direction. It simply cannot. This is the plane of unity…When we are free from conflict and pain, we are in unity… The kicker here is to remember that under every distortion, what’s real—what’s infinitely positive—still exists…So then any time we have something negative in our make-up, it’s never all of us…The part that sides with life is going in the direction of love. The anti-life side, on the other hand, is hell-bent on hating and isolating and staying in fear… We step across a major threshold on our spiritual journey when we make the discovery that some part of us wishes for a negative outcome…When we don’t know we have a deliberate dark streak, we suffer far greater. We feel singled out as a victim and don’t get that we have a stake in the pain we’ve created…We must see that negativity is only a temporary reality. It will eventually grind to a halt as it takes us to our knees… Whenever we are separated from others, we’re swimming in the sphere of negativity. So then regardless how much we want union and wholeness, there is another side doing the sidestroke of resistance. The more we deny this, the more it hurts. Don’t forget, it’s not possible to want 100% isolation and separation… The part of this drama that makes it so compelling is that we get a precarious pleasure from indulging in our destructive ways…We don’t want to give up our pleasure…We now hold the tools in our hands to make different choices. Perhaps we can now see a way forward to living a life that is free from pain. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 16: How Pleasure Gets Twisted into Self-Perpetuating Cycles of Pain Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #140 Conflict of Positive versus Negative Oriented Pleasure as the Origin of Pain
18 How to use meditation to create a better life
Jul 18 2023
18 How to use meditation to create a better life
More whole is more happy. Our goal, then, is to use meditation to unify our whole selves, folding in the split off aspects of the Lower Self that remain in separation. Consider the truth that whatever is inside, no matter how painful it might be, cannot be avoided, but rather must be expressed and released. And that, friends, is what meaningful meditation is all about. Our beings are steeped in a potent and highly creative substance, called our soul substance…We can think of the soul substance like a giant receptor site. The more we are able to have a single-pointed conviction that is unconflicted and uncontaminated with hidden negativities that create secret doubts, the more deeply and clearly will we mold this substance with our imprint… In a defenseless state, our soul substance is resilient and receptive, loose and free…Conversely, when we’re holding onto distorted concepts that foster negative feelings and destructive attitudes, we are breaking divine laws. This makes us feel fearful and guilty, and that makes us feel we must defend ourselves. It’s our defenses that make the surface of our soul substance brittle and hard, which makes it much tougher to imprint… Whenever a creative act takes place and something new manifests, it has come about through the fusion of two principles: the active and the receptive…Which means that both of these principles must be part of our meditation, if we want to use it create good things…To use meditation in a creative way, it needs to include these four stages or phases: 1) Concept, 2) Impression, 3) Visualization, and 4) Faith… We’ll start to see that these answers, and the enlightenment that comes with them, are pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. Little by little, they fit together to form a comprehensive picture. Eventually, we’ll learn to rely on this process over anything else…Real faith is a knowing, an inner experience that’s beyond the shadow of doubt. Reaching it requires we have the courage to take chances, to risk finding out the truth… One of the most important laws, which we can also find in Scripture, states: According to your belief you shall experience…So if we believe that we cannot change, that we live in a hostile universe, and that our ultimate fate is tragedy, guess what. We will—we must—experience just that…But if we believe in the truth that abundance and joy can be ours—that we can change and grow out of our poverty, our misery and our despair—we can’t help but do so… There is no question, problem, conflict or darkness that we can’t bring into our meditation. We lose sight of how effective it can be for the biggest as well as the smallest issues of life. In reality, there’s no such thing as big or small. Everything is important. Our whole life matters…Moreover, it won’t work to split off and ignore the undesirable parts of ourselves, hoping we can enjoy Oneness when we are anything less than whole. Listen and learn more. Bones, Chapter 18: How to Use Meditation to Create a Better Life Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #194 Meditation: Its Laws and Various Approaches – A Summary (Meditation as Positive Life Creation)
19 The giant misunderstanding about freedom and self-responsibility
Jul 19 2023
19 The giant misunderstanding about freedom and self-responsibility
The stronger and deeper our convictions, the more substantial are the forms that exist in our soul. There’s one soul form worth talking about specifically, because it exists in each and every one of us to some degree. This form is shaped like an abyss and it’s made completely out of illusion. The size of this abyss varies for everybody. But whether it’s a crater or a dip, we have to look this threat right in the eye and not blink, taking full self-responsibility for it… We might feel like we’ve fallen into this abyss when we can’t accept that this is an imperfect world. Or when we can’t, for the life of us, let go of our self-centered self-will…When we’re caught in this abyss, we are really in fear of not getting our way… So let’s say someone doesn’t like us. Or they don’t behave the way we want them to. This, in itself, is not a threat…Once we accept that we are in some way inadequate, or accept that the other is, we’ll be able give up our self-will that demands perfection. But before this, it will feel like we are in grave danger if we yield, if we let go, if we give in to this apparent abyss… It feels like we are trapped inside this abyss. And yet the only way out is by letting go and completely falling in…When we do, we’ll discover that something amazing happens. We don’t crash. And we don’t perish. We float…. It’s wishful thinking to hope this abyss is going to disappear by itself. The only way for it to vanish is by taking the risk, little by little and then over and over, to plunge into it. Good news: it gets easier every time we do this…Every time someone does something we don’t agree with. Every time someone shows up with a fault. Each time we feel fear about a frustration we can't rationalize away. All these threaten our world of Utopia. We feel our life is at stake if this is not a perfect world… So if Utopia were real, what would it look like?...Utopia means we get everything we want, how we want it and when we want it. We also want to have total freedom—with no responsibility…But alas, it is impossible. We can’t be both free and have no responsibility. To whatever extent we shift responsibility off ourselves and onto someone or something else, to that degree we curtail our own freedom. We enslave ourselves. It’s as simple as that… We’ve become so afraid, though, of taking self-responsibility, our fear of it has become a large part of our abyss. We fear that if we assume self-responsibility, we will fall right in and be swallowed up whole…It seems like a huge danger to let go of our demand to always have our way…We literally fear we’ll be miserable if we have to give up our demand for Utopia… We can never be happy because buried in our unconscious is this mistaken concept that happiness requires utter perfection in all ways. But folks, none of this true. It’s all part of a grand illusion…We believe that harm can come to us through the arbitrariness of life, of fate or of the god-of-our-image, or through the ignorance and cruelty of others…For if we don’t want to be responsible for our life, someone else must be… We are only helpless because we make ourselves so when we shift responsibility away from ourselves. When we look at things this way, we begin to see the heavy price we pay for insisting on Utopia. We pay every day with our fear…As we do this work of self-discovery, when we find the corresponding note in ourselves that is vibrating due to provocation from another, we’ll stop feeling like a victim… Part and parcel of being a grown-up and making independent decisions is that we are bound to make mistakes. The child in us who still clings to Utopia, however, believes we must always be perfect. To make a mistake is to fall into the abyss…Life on planet Earth is not Utopia, and we aren’t perfect. This is not a tragedy. Listen and learn more. Read Bones, Chapter 19: The Giant Misunderstanding About Freedom and Self-Responsibility Read Original Pathwork® Lecture: #60 The Abyss of Illusion – Freedom & Self-Responsibility