Printed in the Conscious Creation Journal
Perspectives on God – Part Three: The Psychological Components and Mechanisms of Separation
by William Gunderson
By now, we are coming to accept the fact that when we came into this physical world, we lost sight of our eternal true nature. Sometimes we have difficulty seeing how our daily physical experience relates to the eternal aspects of our being, even though they are inseparably bound. When we made the decision to enter physicality, we chose particular circumstances of manifest limitations that would provide us material to work with. Engaging in this “work” would provide us the opportunity to expand our consciousness. Can we just accept that that is a “natural” part of this whole trip-and that our aim is to remember that we have the power to transcend the limited thinking of the world? Because if we can do that, then we can just get on with it. Getting on with it “is” the trip. The object isn’t to become enlightened masters “before” we can proceed. The point is the journey, to which there is no end. It helps getting on with it if we can attain an objective view of some of the mechanical elements involved in our unease within this physical experience.
As we discuss this, I would urge you to remind yourself along the way that what’s being described is all just part of the trip. It’s natural since we chose the circumstances, though that doesn’t mean that we’re supposed to remain stuck there. Since it’s natural that we’ve forgotten our limitless nature, we don’t have to condemn ourselves or think of ourselves as helpless victims. Try to laugh at it if you can. I’m going to insert a little symbol (*) throughout to remind you of this.
Roots Of Unhappiness
All who are leading unfulfilled lives are holding onto illusory beliefs, which, in most cases have roots that go back to our very early childhood. Some of us may have been raised in rather dysfunctional families where we were emotionally abandoned. We may have had parents who were cold or distant or who were authoritarian and / or angry disciplinarians. We may have been frequently subjected to and subsequently terrified by displays of uncontrolled rage. Some of us were children of alcoholics or drug addicts. (*) These troublesome experiences were occurring at the time that our ego was developing. Our ego is the part of us that interacts with the world. We identify self with ego; it is the focal point of our sense of self. And it is also the center of all of those painful experiences.
We usually have carried our reactions to these experiences with us into adulthood to some degree or another. They may appear as constant anxiety, feelings of rejection, low self-esteem, inescapable fear of abandonment, depression and pessimism. We may feel powerless to exert any control over the events of our own lives. In some cases, we may feel totally dependent upon others for our own survival. (*) We may feel unworthy of love or success or health. We may feel that nothing good, can or ever will happen to us. These feelings rob us of happiness, never allowing us to feel a sense of peace or ease about life. (Let me hasten to add, however, that we have control over our feelings.)
By gaining an understanding of what is occurring, we can come to see that these feelings not only are not serving us well, but, in fact, are no longer relevant. If we can begin to see them for what they are– illusions of the injured ego (*)–then we can make a decision about them. We begin by focusing upon the truth about ourselves. I ask that you be easy on yourself and understand this particular truth. We are all innocent children of God. We were innocent when the experiences happened and we have no reason to feel guilty or unworthy. If we wish to move on from what happened then, to living a more fulfilling life now, we must turn to the truth that we are part of Universal Mind. Know that you’re not alone, not powerless, that infinite love and power is with you always.
Roles Of The Conscious And Subconscious Mind
Our subconscious mind is our individualized part of the Universal Subconscious Mind. It is the center of power. It has the ability to draw from the universe the guidance we need and the manifestation of the desires we clearly and decisively focus upon. It faithfully responds to orders we give it. It doesn’t go about haphazardly creating on its own. You direct the subconscious mind. When we say “you”, we mean that part of you which is referred to as the conscious mind. Our conscious mind is that part of us that thinks and makes decisions. The surprising thing is that for all of the limitless power of the subconscious mind, it is subject to the conscious mind. The conscious mind is like the captain of the ship. It’s the directing agent and the subconscious mind can only carry out orders given it by the conscious mind.
The rather confounding thing is that we are mostly directing the subconscious mind unconsciously (*). In other words, so much of our conscious activity is on automatic pilot, that in a sense, we operate largely unconsciously. We don’t really pay that much attention to the things that we’re thinking about. Meanwhile however, our subconscious mind is taking our thoughts as orders, regardless of their quality. Remember the analogy of the powerful hose (Part 2) that we can’t turn off? We do, however, have the power to shape the flow. You see, the word “orders” in the sense that we are using it, includes more than just clear and explicit directives. We might apply a somewhat more accurate word–attention. This word really is the key to how this works. Our subconscious mind takes as orders that which we give our attention to. Of course it can’t fulfill the thousands of thoughts that pass through our minds every day; it takes most seriously the ones that we focus upon with the most conviction and emotion.
Unfortunately, many of the convictions we have about ourselves are negative and most of our strong emotions are outbursts in reaction to something unsettling (or that we perceive as such) that has occurred. These emphatic emotional reactions are a powerful focus of attention which our subconscious responds to and acts upon. We probably aren’t cognizant of how much this is so. Regardless, this is how we are unconsciously creating negative conditions in our lives. (*) As we become aware of this, we realize that we should take this whole process of creation more seriously. We learn that it’s wise to be more aware of our thoughts, that we should take control of our conscious minds and use them the way we were meant to.
The Ego Or False Self
Earlier we referred to our ego as the center of our pain. It is a natural part of us which really is the byproduct of our upbringing. Often the term “ego” creates confusion because of its associations with the field of psychology. The psychologists portrayal of the ego is a bit different than the way we view it here. You will find that we also use the terms “false self” or “separated self”. The particular character of the false self was created not only by our experiences, but also by all of the things that we were told (and more importantly came to believe) by our families, our schools, our religion, our community, etc. (*)
Many of the things we were told were necessary precautionary messages that would assist us in learning to live on this physical plane–mostly geared toward teaching us to avoid dangers. Other messages were of a moralistic nature; still others were to teach us social customs and conformity to community standards. Many of the messages we absorbed though are not so obvious–things such as our parents attitudes about money, scarcity or abundance, about health and vitality, about work, social status, about difficulty or ease as far as our earthly existence is concerned. For many of us, much of the content of our ego is, as described earlier, comprised of severe emotional pain, the result of love rejection and emotional abandonment–far more common than we like to admit. (*)
Genesis Of Our Vulnerable Self
All of what I just described is the material you use to form the picture you have of yourself (your self image) and your ability to operate in the world. What your thoughts are regarding yourself determines what your experience in the world is. While much of the stuff the ego absorbed was appropriate for the duration of our young formative years, as we move from childhood, much of it no longer is. As we become adults, we should turn our attention from the past and begin creating our lives according to our true selves (our Higher Selves), but quite often, we remain stuck back there. You know the concept of being “born again”? Well the true meaning of that is getting unstuck and learning to create anew. That involves turning from the illusions of the ego.
Much of the content of the ego has been repressed into largely unconscious form, manifesting as distorted thinking patterns. The ego uses these distorted thinking patterns to deceive us into believing that we are totally subject to the choppy seas of outer events, helpless victims, unable to control our experiences. (*) The injured ego is constantly trying to convince us, in the name of our own survival, to go along with the illusion that it’s a cut throat and evil world populated by evil people out to control us in order to assure their own survival. As it turns out, it isn’t really “our” survival the ego is interested in as much as it’s own. Because we identify with the ego as who we are, we go quite willingly. We rarely question these impulses of the ego.
The ego has no power of its own. It survives by commanding our attention with fear messages and then getting us to go with them. Remember our discussion about the huge significance of what we give our attention to? Our subconscious takes as an order that which we focus upon. The name of the game for the ego is separation. Its survival depends upon it. It has a bundle of clever tools at its disposal to assure that we remain focused away from love and unity. It doesn’t want us to realize our own competence, worthiness and power. It doesn’t want us to know love. It’s always trying to convince us of our inadequacy and unworthiness. When we desire more, it often tells us, “Wait a minute; you can’t do or have that. You’re undeserving and incapable. You’ve always failed at everything you’ve tried. Who do you think you are anyway?” (*) Not only does it tell us how powerless and dependent we are, it also tries to keep us separated by constantly convincing us to be wary of relationships with others. It tries to keep us fearful, jealous and resentful of others. When we play along with this, we become more isolated and inclined to believe that truth is as our ego presents it. We support it and give it even greater power.
I hope you didn’t miss the opening sentence of the previous paragraph. I wish to emphasize this. The ego has no power of its own! As we talk about the deceptive methods of the ego, I don’t want you to conceive of it as a devious power beyond your control, working by itself to defeat you. Nothing could be further from the truth. You are in total control simply by virtue of choosing to go with the ego or not. This will become more clear.
Identifying with the many frightening thoughts of the ego, we submit to it. When this is the case, we’re not in control of our lives. Our ego has us entranced. Out of ignorance, we allow it to control us. (*) Fear can only be toward things such as conditions and circumstances of the “outer” world (including other people). So this is where the ego keeps our attention–upon outer events. It presents to us pictures of impending doom about our finances, our work, our relationships, our health and on and on. And as we are captivated by these pictures, we indulge in worry, anger, anxiety, fear, frustration and resentment. It has us convinced that all power is in outer conditions. THIS IS THE GREAT ILLUSION. (*)(*)(*)
As we will learn, outer events are “effect, not cause”. The fear images are really just thoughts. And when I said that we were meant to create with our mind–well guess what. You are creating all of the things that these thoughts are comprised of. (*) If it is fear that keeps us from love, then, in order to come back to a state of harmony, we need to become less fixated upon the deceptions of the ego and turn our focus to our Higher Selves where love is. Sometimes one hears that what we need to do is shed our ego but all we really need to do is turn our focus from it. Then we can begin to re-create our lives from within. Be easy about it. The idea is not to fight your ego. That’s just another way of giving it your power, of playing into its game. When you find yourself joining in the fear thoughts, (*) simply observe what is going on and then turn your attention to thoughts of what you do want. So much of spiritual evolvement is in becoming more the “observer” rather than a reactor.
Cause And Effect
Our confused fixation upon outer conditions is directly related to another confusion–that of cause and effect. What we experience is directly related to what we think–not to what happens to us. Indeed, what happens to us is the effect of our thoughts, not the cause of our experience. And, follow me now, if what we think is mostly what we have been taught about how life is/works, then we remain stuck on a merry-go-round where everything stays pretty much the same for us. This is so because as we continually focus our attention upon the same old thoughts, they are continually creating in our lives, repetitively, the same old experience.
But what is the quality of those old thoughts, many of which we have absorbed from the mass consciousness? How many are just prejudicial nonsense? How many are about low regard for yourself, your abilities, potential and your personal power? How rigid are you about these thoughts? This is the problem with rigid thinking. (*) Things remain fairly static at best but more than likely there will be a slow, but ever increasing downward spiral. Static thinking just does not allow for an escalation of good (an upward spiral). Therefore, the only way to re-create our lives is to think different thoughts–think anew. We must revise our beliefs about cause and effect.
So here you are; you’re creating your life ok, but is it the life you want to create? The way it was meant to be when you came into this physical form, was that you would decide what it is that you want your life to be, visualize it, get the feel of it and watch it become manifest in your experience. Put simply, you would decide what you want and the universe would deliver it to you. Well, be assured, that is the way it works. All that’s needed is that you get back on track with the original plan and become conscious of what and how you are creating. (*) That simply means getting back in control, wresting your power from the ego. Its time is over. Now it’s time for you to become the decision maker, the DA–Director of (your) Attention.
Life Circumstances Reflect Your Self Image (*)
Take a look at your life. Consider all of your circumstances including your financial status, the car you drive, your home, neighborhood, health, job satisfaction, all of it, and then realize that it’s an exact picture of how you view yourself. If you don’t like what you see, realize that it is not the real you; you are not your circumstances. Circumstances are fleeting. They are temporary. They are effect, not cause. Our life’s conditions are our creations. Because of our conditioning, we tend to identify ourselves with our creations. (*) But our creations are not us. They are the product of past thoughts. Thoughts are cause. Most of us are inclined to identify ourselves as, this person with this name, this job, this home in this neighborhood, who drives this car and hangs out with these type of people. But the truth is not, “who I am is someone who drives an old beat-up car (for example)” but rather, “I drive an old beat-up car because of who I falsely think I am”. The truth is, we drive an old auto because of limited beliefs that that’s all we deserve. (Discounting the possibility, of course, that it’s a conscious choice derived from a conscious desire.) The same goes for limited health, lousy relationships and unhappy careers. (*)
Consider who you want to be; that’s the real you. You are magnificent. To remember who we are, divine expressions of Infinite Mind in physical form, is our mission. Realize your power. You only think you’re powerless; (*) and the universe is simply matching what it is that you think about yourself. Are you beginning to get the picture that this is a miraculous process that can work for you rather than against you? Though it may seem difficult in the beginning to accept the truth of your miraculous creative power (*), your acceptance will come.
Who do you want to be?
Determine the person you want to be and the life you want to have. Where you aren’t sure about that, ask your Higher Self for guidance. In order for your subconscious mind to assist you in bringing to you what you want, it needs to have something to work on. Give it a picture. Imagine it; visualize it; try to feel it as real, now.
In the introduction, I asked why don’t we just get on with accepting that we are unlimited beings and live the magnificent lives we were meant to. After all, it’s simply a matter of decision. If we’re not choosing the best thoughts, it’s largely because we’re stuck in what I refer to as the muck of current conditions and mass consciousness. But we’re not aware of what the muck feels or looks like-sort of a case of not being able to see the forest for the trees. (*) Because we have lived in the muck all of our lives, it seems natural-almost comfortable, making it easier to remain there. Next, we’re going to examine this muck. By showing it for what it is, you can then make a more informed and conscious choice whether or not you want to remain mired in it.
End Part 3
©2001, William Gunderson. All Rights Reserved. Printed in the Conscious Creation Journal. http://www.consciouscreation.com (Feel free to duplicate this article for personal use – please include this copyright notice and the URL.)
About William Gunderson… Current and/or past roles include designer of experiments in research psych, advertising and corporate assignment photographer in San Francisco, Operations Director in start-up ventures, skydive instructor, patent holder and product developer, start-up venture helmsman. Too many interests and no specialties seemed a curse. He has since come to peace with the fact that working through failures and frustration were actually part of the unfolding of his individual divine gift. (We all have them without exception.) His happens to be wonderful problem solving abilities. “The overview perspective, seeing the inter-relationships of many disciplines was supposed to be my thing after all.” William now lives in Southern California assisting businesses, as opportunities arise, with product development, co-creators, marketing, vision and just being student and teacher, as we all are in this evolutionary process. If you would like to email William, the address is w[email protected]