then come back to this one 🙂
Back To Byron And Her Version Of "Liberation:"
Circling back to ‘The Work’ Of Byron Katie. We can clearly see, if we take a step back for a moment, that to blame ALL SUFFERING/PAIN on THOUGHT is a very child like way of ‘problem solving.’ It's a clear example of how a child who has no control over their environment, no way of understanding cause and effect and no way of making things better for themselves would approach something in their life that is painful.
First, you ask yourself if what you are seeing/thinking is ‘true.’
Then you send yourself down a path of mental gymnastics designed to get you to a place where you 'realize' that whatever is hurting you is all in your mind, due to a faulty perception, and either DOESN'T EXIST AT ALL or is simply not actually painful - but rather it is your resistance to it and story around it that makes it so. The ultimate goal is to get to a place where you no longer have any desire to change anything and are in a perfect state of transcended bliss either through outright denial of fact or through the belief that whatever happened was GOOD or whatever is happening is perfect. You are meant to fully detach from any pain through convincing yourself that your pain is misperception. You are one with God, and God would never make anything bad happen, so bad things clearly either don't exist (that thing you don't like is just a figment of your imagination) or you are simply wrong to see it as bad. It's not outside of you, and in fact YOU are most likely the perpetuator of that painful thing, not anyone or anything else.
You get yourself so turned around that you are meant to fully take the blame for anything painful that anyone else did to you, or to get to a place where you let go of the idea that that which you don't prefer exists at all.
Poof. You're free. Because it was all your fault! And you can just stop thinking that now and all your problems will go away.
Her personal story of getting SO deep into her depression that she was in a constant state of trauma - then having that 'awakening' experience where she realized it was 'all in her head' leading to a bliss state also sounds very similar to that state of pre-death bliss people talk about experiencing in the pits of deep survival trauma. That feeling of being totally out of body, out of this world and out of anything that could cause pain - it's a dissociation.
This is the same with the dissociative ‘transcended spiritual state’ most claim to be in when they reach 'God Consciousness’ - a sense of bliss, everything being how it ‘should be’ - all is right with the world. This is EXACTLY what happens to all humans and animals right before they die a terrible death - this state is induced by SEVERE TRAUMA in order to numb the pain of whatever we are going through. Long fasts, deep emotional pain, long yoga/physical endurance states - we go from being in a state of fight or flight, to going into a state of freeze, to a deeper, right before death state of BLISS - and this is a stress response not an awakening response.
This is something I believe we are going to start to see in science moving forward. What we have all been believing was ‘transcendence’ was actually a deep trauma state. A deep state of STRESS pushing our bodies and minds to a place where they perceive that we are about to DIE - and in that we just 'let go.' That is where the bliss is coming from. The body/mind being pushed so far it actually 'cracks' in preparation for death.
TRUE liberation, true ‘God’ consciousness, true awakening is PRACTICAL. It liberates you from patterns of thought and behaviour that are OUT OF SYNC WITH THE NATURE OF REALITY - and thus are causing YOU to BEHAVE in ways that BREAK YOU AGAINST THE LAWS OF NATURE. Spiritual insight should bring to you AWARENESS of how reality works, WHY you are continually in a loop of pain and suffering and what you can PRACTICALLY DO ABOUT IT. You will be MORE embodied, not less, as processing and being with the physical sensations is a part of the journey. Learning to be with your pain in a way where it can MOVE THROUGH and INFORM YOU is the key. Learning to question your thoughts in the way where you are liberated from beliefs about reality that aren't true that then lead to changes in BEHAVIOUR that cause NEW EFFECTS in your life - THAT is liberation.
It's a liberation from the child like perspective that there is a big scary world that you don’t understand and must either change yourself or learn to cope with what is - into a broader, more empowered stance that what you do matters, and that YOU CAN CHANGE your way of being, and this will give you a DIFFERENT EFFECT in your life. One step at a time. Not one change that fixes everything, but a progressive path of growth and evolution that never ends.
THIS is transcendence. Transcending the helpless child view and the idea that there is 'one solution' to all our pain. Accepting what is as how reality SHOULD be playing out in the cause and effect laws that exist, leading us to understand how we can change our way of being to get a new effect. Surrendering to the fact that we will ALWAYS have something to learn, and that learning and growth don't mean pain and suffering, but rather are what life is all about. We transcend helplessness and we transcend the lie that pain/growth = we are wrong and bad/unsafe. We transcend consensus reality approval for TRUE REALITY approval. We learn to navigate pain and pleasure with a sense of JOY because we get that the PATH IS THE THING. There is no 'over there' - just a gradual journey of discovery that empowers us more and more to create the world we want to see through right understanding leading to right action - with lots of missteps and things to learn along the way.
All Is As It Should Be:
The teaching that ‘all is as it should be’ does NOT mean that all is at its highest evolution. NO. We are conscious co-creators. WE HAVE THE POWER TO CHANGE THINGS. Meaning if things HURT - the answer is not to learn to endure the pain or learn to ignore it or make it ALL YOUR FAULT thinking you can change it through changing yourself. It's to see the REALITY of WHY something hurts, and then shifting our way of being to something more harmonious. This may require perceptual shifts that DO make what is ACTUALLY OCCURRING more apparent to you (many of us ARE telling ourselves stories about reality that aren't true and thus shifting perspective to what is actually happening, does 'solve' our pain - but this is usually the beginning of the process, not the end.) Most have no idea what true pleasure feels like, what true life generation feels like, because they have been so deeply disconnected from their FEELINGS for so much of their lives - so deeply disconnected with WHO THEY ARE as a person - through shame and guilt - and thus have no access to REALITY.
The mind of God is FELT and it is GROUNDED and it becomes PRACTICAL UNDERSTANDING. Realizing we are all one is first a feeling, and that feeling will then become an awareness that permeates your way of BEING - that CHANGES how you LIVE because you now see the connection between yourself and all things. THIS is a spiritual awakening. You can no longer litter and not care. You can no longer yell at someone and not feel for them. No can no longer eat how you used to eat, watch what you used to watch, interact how you used to interact - YOU HAD AN EXPERIENCE OF GOD and now you are CHANGED fundamentally. And you don’t have to FORCE yourself to be different - in fact, it is HARDER to try to be how you USED TO BE now that you are actually AWARE of a higher level of information. THIS is life generation taking itself forward!
It's the shame and guilt that trap us in our childlike perspective, that we are currently calling spirituality. It is the idea that we have no power or control, or that WE ALREADY HAVE THE ANSWER and it’s just not working that get us into these states of trauma/stress response.
Actual awakening is when we start to see the connection between our actions and the reaction we are getting from life, when we start to question our perceptions of reality, when we start to be able to step into an empowered state.
This method of life that tells us that anything that hurts is simply an illusion is a drastic oversimplification for what is really happening.
YES - that which hurts is OUT OF SYNCH with the structure of reality. BUT that doesn't mean it isn't happening. We are ALLOWED to break ourselves against the laws of reality. That is how we learn and grow. Like doing an autopsy - we learn SO MUCH about how the body works via taking it apart. We learn SO MUCH about the structure of reality and ourselves through breaking ourselves against the structure. Trying to create in ways that don't work. Attempting to fulfill desires in way that can't be fulfilled that way. There is no 'wrong' in that which hurts. It's not an illusion. It's a consequence of living outside the bounds of truth.
It's the child perspective that says if someone can't fix the pain for me, I'm stuck in it forever. That says if I'm hurting and I can't fix MYSELF (which is the only thing I have control over as a child) that that then means I'm doomed to suffer forever. In this, the desire for dissociation is born. Just like with a child, when there is pain that a caregiver can't fix - the child will continue to cry out until eventually they stop. They stop not because the pain stopped. Not because they became ok with the pain. They stop because they dissociated. They disconnected. They checked out. They learned to NUMB the pain.
THIS is what Byron is talking about in her work.
This stage of dissociation from painful things.
If I don't like it, I'm not going to look at it. I'm going to deny its existence. I'm going to tell myself that it's all in my mind, and thus if I just change my mind, I change reality.
This is a slippery slope that again, is born in misunderstanding.
It is born from trauma. The trauma that says I have no control over my circumstances and that the trauma of being trapped in the loop of being yourself bringing up the fear of death but living your conditioning feels totally painful as well.
THIS is where Byron is teaching from.
A trauma response.
'Trauma Response' Sold As Liberation:
I am in pain. I can't be my real self. I can't keep living my conditioning without there being negative backlash. That which hurts in my environment I have no control over because I am a child who doesn't understand. Thus, if I can't be what others want me to be, I will simply deny the existence of any other painful thing. I will then work to CONVINCE people of my perspective through 'teaching my work' because from child perspective, when we all AGREE that reality is this way, it IS this way. Things are only 'happening' the way they are because other people think and believe things that are 'wrong.' If we all thought and believed the same, reality would follow suit and be what we all think it is.
In order to push ourselves to the point where we are capable of 'letting go of our stories' most of us have to get into such an extreme state of stress that our minds and bodies give way, we can't keep holding our stories - and in that we find moments of liberation or freedom that are quickly lost as we recover our strength and go back to living how we were before.
This is all trauma.
See you next week for the final post!