I Don’t Like Myself. I Want To Be Different!

I have run into a pattern recently in working with people.  These people do not like themselves, or something about the way they are as people, and they are angry or resentful about it and want to change.  This has led to numerous discussions about what is needed in order for people to achieve the change they want make in themselves.  Many people are operating under the false impression that they need to be unhappy with the way they are, and make changes in the way they are, in order to be able to love and accept themselves.  The truth is that we need to love and accept ourselves in order to be able to change!

If I am angry and resentful of the way I am, I am rejecting myself, and “beating up on” myself.  If I am rejecting, and “beating up on” myself, I am not seeing myself clearly, or even looking at myself at all.  If I am not seeing myself or looking at myself, how can I work with myself in order to change.
There is a sign hanging in my office which acknowledges this age old wisdom.  It reads, “To be content and growing, embrace yourself as you are, celebrate yourself as you long to be.” – Mary Anne Radmacher  The first step here is a necessity.  “Embrace yourself as you are” means to accept yourself.  Once I have accepted myself I have the ability to examine myself closely and truly see myself accurately.  Once I see myself accurately I will be able to work with the different aspects of myself that I like and those I don’t like.  
The fundamental truth here is that I cannot work with something I refuse to accept and examine.  I cannot change something that I cannot see clearly.  
If I am willing to face the pain and sadness that are contained in my misperceptions and negative beliefs about myself, I will then be able to see them clearly as the mistakes and falsehoods that they are.  Once I see them clearly my negative assessments of myself, and the negative emotions they generate will fall away and no longer have power over my me.
The truth is  – 
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

Why Is This Happening To Me Again 4 Hour Audio Part 2

Last night in the Mindshifters group we listened to the second half-hour of the four hour audio lecture titled Why Is This Happening To Me Again?  The thing that struck me about the material this time through was the statement that,  “My mind can only show me the past, until I cancel and dismantle all the old false realities which I have stored in my mind, and my body’s energy system by the process of denial and suppression.” 

The definition for “the devil” was once again covered and the point was clarified that “the devil” is the past and it lives in the mind of man.  “The devil” in this definition is the process of living in the past which keeps us from living in the mind of God.  The mind of God is the mind of Love.   The only way for  me to get an accurate picture of the world around me is for me to be viewing the world through the filter of Love.

Anytime I am feeling anything other than Love, I am getting distorted data about what is really going on in the world around me.  Anytime I am feeling any form of hostility or fear, this is a gift which is telling me that I am making an error, and that I have moved out of  the mind of Love.
Since the mind of Love is the only thing which can show me an accurate picture of the world around me, I need to stop what I am doing and restore the energy of Love to my mind.  
We would not think of walking around blindfolded, or driving a car while blindfolded, because of the dangers to ourselves and others.  In just the same way, we should make the commitment to stop whatever we are doing when we feel fear or hostility, and use whatever tools we have to dismantle that false reality before doing anything else! For we are just as surely blinded from the truth whenever we are feeling hostility or fear, as we would be if we were wearing a physical blindfold!
Several members discussed their new understanding of the difference between the trigger for an event, and the actual mechanism which causes the event.  In the lecture Dr. Ryce gives the example of the person who comes from a primitive area, with no idea about motors or machinery of any kind.  If you put this person on the side of a river near a bridge, and ask him to figure out what makes the bridge go up, he will watch as a boat comes by and the bridge goes up.   Then the boat goes away and the bridge goes down.  Then another boat comes by and the bridge goes up – the boat goes away and the bridge goes down.  Before long the person concludes that boats make the bridge go up.  
This is a classic example of mistaking the trigger for the actual mechanism.  Those of us who know about mechanics and draw bridges know that there is a person inside the bridge house who sees the boat, and then switches on a motor which drives a series of gears and cables which make the bridge go up.  We also know that nothing about the boat being next to the bridge causes the bridge to go up.  A boat can sit next to the bridge for days without the bridge ever going up, either because there is no one in the bridge house, or because the boat does not have authorization to travel through that part of the river, etc.
Imagine though, that the person who was unaware of any kind of mechanical workings or automation has decided that boats make the bridge go up.  Then you tell that person that you will give them a very large prize or salary if they will keep the bridge from going up, ever again.  That person will probably conclude that they need to change the course of every boat that comes onto that river, to keep it away from the bridge in order to win the prize, or be paid the salary you promised.  Now before you go thinking that this  person is silly, or stupid, think about how many times in our lives we have talked about, wished, or tried to make someone else change their behavior so that we won’t have to be angry, sad, hurt, or frustrated!
If indeed we are truly aware of what causes our emotions, we will not be looking at the actions of others for the cause and the cure of our negative experiences.  We will be able to recognize that we create our realities and that we cause the emotions we are feeling at any time, and in every way.
The members of the group worked through two rounds of doing Reality Management Worksheets last night and the process was productive and emotional as it usually is.  The process last night highlighted the difficulty some of us have of defining what the trigger is for a particular worksheet and the difficulty we have at times in clarifying which thoughts cause which emotions.
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

What Attracts You To Other People?

Dr. Michael Ryce talks about how it is helpful to hear the same material stated in different ways and from different points of view and different disciplines, such as science, psychology, theology, etc., and that this helps us integrate new material.  This post is about how we give up on the true nature of ourselves sometime between the time we are born, and the time we become adults.  Dr. Ryce describes this process in some detail in his lecture titled “From Co-dependence to Inter-dependence”, in which he discusses the role of the Power Person in each of our lives.  A Power Person is anyone for whom we “gave up” our conscious connection to our true nature as Love, in order to win the acceptance, and approval of the  Power Person.  Clearly each of us can have more than one Power Person in our lives.  

Identifying who those Power People are, and discovering the patterns we have developed in our behavior in order to try to please them, is a very useful part of the process of returning to the conscious awareness of our true nature as Love.  The more we can identify the things that trigger us to feel anything less than Love, the more we have the opportunity to “Forgive” or “Cancel” and dismantle that part of our stored memories and false realities.
Gregg Braden has written a book titled The Divine Matrix which is all about the invisible energy that connects all of creation.  It is called different things in different cultures, but it all boils down to the realization that we are all connected, and that nothing, and no one, is truly separate from the rest of creation and existence.  In the last quarter of the book, Gregg Braden describes a co-worker he knew who was frequently “falling in love” with people despite the fact that he was happily married.  This person used to “fall in love” with the waitress at lunch, or the bank teller, then come back to the office and obsess about the latest person he was attracted to, and wonder if this person was supposed to be his soul-mate.
In the book Mr. Braden offers the following explanation for why this happens, and why each of us find people to whom we are instantly and powerfully attracted.  He suggests that each of those people are exhibiting traits, characteristics, and skills which we have denied, repressed, or buried in ourselves.  He suggests that we deny, repress, and bury those traits in ourselves in order to fit in with, or be accepted by, different people and groups in our lives.  He suggests that most of the time this is a process we are not consciously aware of, but that some people make conscious choices to “give up”, or hide parts of themselves in the pursuit of career, and other goals.
He suggests that those traits, qualities, and skills are not gone, they always remain part of who we are.  We cannot be otherwise.  What is needed is for us to recognize, and willingly accept the challenge of facing the fear of being who we really are.  So why not try this as a challenge?  Why not begin to notice the people you admire, and are attracted to, and let yourself question how that person is displaying a part of your personality, skills, and traits which you have buried, denied or repressed?  Make some mental or even paper and pencil notes about those qualities, and then examine;
 “How would  my life be different if I fully owned and lived from these qualities and traits?”, 
 “How do I imagine this would challenge or change some of the key relationships in my life?”, 
 “Who in my life, was I trying to please, or appease by hiding this part of myself?”  
The goal, IS THE PROCESS of learning to love and accept yourself as you truly are!
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

Why Is This Happening To Me Again? 4 Hour Audio

Last night the Mindshifters group listened  to the first part of a 4 hour audio version of Dr. Michael Ryce’s lecture titled; Why Is This Happening To Me Again?  We decided to listen to the audio version because it is more detailed than the two hour video lecture of the same name, and in it Dr. Ryce takes more time explaining the underlying reasons for why our emotional system works the way it does.  In this version the first thing that stuck out for me was the comment about Blockage of Personal Error, which is a condition from which we all suffer.  The greatest threat to our ability to see the truth in any situation is our Blockage of Personal Error.  Blockage of Personal Error is the direct result of our denying our creator-ship.   For if we accept that we are creating our internal reality, and all of our emotions, and all of our reactions, then we will have nothing to blame on others, and nothing to blame on our circumstances. 

As I explained this to a friend she commented that this was “very deep”.  That shocked me because it seemed completely obvious and crystal clear.  Then I realized that the only reason it seems completely obvious to me is that I have listened to this 4 hour lecture at least nine different times over the last three years.  Then I realized that this is the first time this statement jumped out at me as being critically important.  So why is that?  What happened the first eight times I heard this lecture to block me from understanding or even hearing this statement?  Or what happened during the first eight times I listened to this lecture which allowed me to hear this statement and feel its importance, the ninth time I heard the lecture?
This is what Dr. Ryce calls the process of “building brain cells”, for understanding new concepts.  Another way to talk about it is the building of a framework for understanding new ideas and experiences.  If someone has never tasted wine before and a wine expert starts talking to them about a wine being “dry”, or “fruity”, the person will have no idea what is being talked about.  But if the person is given a taste of several different “dry” wines, and told that these are “dry”, and then given a taste of several different “fruity” wines and told that these are “fruity”, then the person will have some basis for comparing other wines they may taste in the future.  Then this person will be able to understand and converse with other people about these basic qualities of wine. 
So, last night a new aspect of the lecture jumped out at me and made perfect sense.  If I create all my own internal realities and I create all of my reactions to people and things around me, then I have no reason to be angry at someone else.  If I am angry at someone else, I am in Blockage of Personal  Error, and I am actively denying the fact that I am the creator of my experience!  Simple!  Logical! Blatantly obvious! So why didn’t I see this so clearly until last night, the ninth time I heard the simple, logical, blatantly obvious statement?  The answer is to be found in the decades of personal, family and social conditioning which has taught me that other people are responsible for hurting my feelings, and making me angry and making me feel guilty, etc.
It is shocking at times to realize how much I still function from the position of Blockage of Personal Power, and how much I actively deny my creator-ship!
I am beginning to realize at a whole new level how my goal is to love myself despite my imperfections, whether they are physical, intellectual, or emotional.  This is captured in one of my favorite quotes from the book, The Mirror Theory, 
“…the ultimate love is appreciation of self.  Look around you.  God is living the ultimate wherever you see people loving their lives.  Once you tap into that love, you want to expand it.  No permanent state exists however, where you wouldn’t want to reach for more.  God is a light that is forever growing in breadth and depth.  But then how can I reach perfection if it’s always in a state of flux? – For that very reason.  Perfection is simply the love you find in THE EVERY MOMENT you exist.  There is no other perfect to find.”
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

Healing Yourself By Learning to Love the Ones You Hate

I received a note recently with a comments about work that is  happening as a result of this group process and the tools Dr. Michael Ryce offers.

“I have been making it too hard (again).  I have taken my role as a Warrior to mean “hard work”, but I forgot that even though it may be harder for some to dive into their deepest wells of darkness to look for layers to peal away, it is not so for me.  I chose this.  I agreed to it.  I came equipped with all I need to face whatever comes my way with Love, gratitude, peace, and acceptance of self.  I do not need to look for it anywhere…I already have it.  It is this process of presencing Love and removing those things which are not for my best and highest good that pave the way to my purposes….my growth…”

Then another individual fowarded a note which builds on something I wrote about in a previous blog post titled, “A Question of Boundaries and Anger”, where I talked about healing yourself by giving love to those  from whom you withhold your love.  The following is an excerpt from the Daily OM which you can view at www.dailyom.com.

“December 19, 2008
The Great Transformer
Loving What You Hate

Hatred can be irrational, and it has a greater impact on the individual who hates than the person or object being hated. Yet overcoming hatred is diffic ult because hatred reinforces itself and causes greater enmity to come into being. The most powerful tool one can use to combat hatred is love. Deciding to love what you hate, whether this is a person, situation, or a part of yourself, can create a profound change in your feelings and your experience. There is little room for anger, dislike, bitterness, or resentment when you are busy loving what you hate. The practice of loving what you hate can transform and shift your emotions from hatred to love, because there is no room for hatred in a space occupied by love.

Granted, it is difficult to forgo judging someone, love your enemy, and seek the good in situations that seem orchestrated to cause you pain or anger. But in deciding to love what you hate, you become one less person adding negativity to the universe. On a simple level, loving what you hate can help you enjoy your life more. On a more complex level, loving what you hate sets you free because you disengage yourself from the hatred that can weigh down the soul. Responding with love to people radiating hatred transmutes their negative energy. You also empower yourself by not letting their negativity enter your personal space. Rather than lowering yourself to the level of their hatred, you give the other person an opportunity to rise above their feelings and meet you on the field of love.

Gandhi once said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Loving what you hate sends a positive, beautiful ene rgy to people while spreading peace and harmony throughout the planet. Instead of reinforcing hatred, you become an advocate for love. Hatred responds to hate by causing anguish. But hatred responds to love by transforming into blissful peace.”

There are many ways to trick ourselves into seeing others as being responsible for the pain, sadness, anger, and confusion in our lives.  The truth however, is that each of us creates our internal experience and each and every emotion we experience.  If I am experiencing hatred, I am creating it. I have the choice, once I learn the truth of how my emotions and experiences are created, to create a different emotion, Love for instance.  When I choose to feel Love, I experience a completely different reality and I heal and change whatever is less than Love which is present at the same time.
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

Empowered To Heal Part 2

Last night we watched the second half of the lecture titled “Empowered To Heal”.  The focus of the  first half of the lecture was the way our thoughts send energy waves out into the world and how those thoughts change the way our world appears to us, and effects others in our world.  The first law for living a long and happy life was reviewed, “Hold the condition of Love in your mind for God, Neighbor, and Self.”  So once again we are directed to focus on our internal feelings and to maintain awareness that we are creating our internal feelings.  Whenever our internal feeling is anything less than Love, it is within our ability to choose to reconnect with Love and bring about healing for ourselves and others we have contact with, either physically or in our thoughts.

The original Aramaic definition of Neighbor was reviewed, as being anyone we think about.  We were reminded that in the sixth century the definition was changed to mean anyone who was physically close to us, but that in the original Aramaic there was no way to distinguish between someone we were physically close to and someone we think about.  This is a reflection of how clearly the creators of the ancient Aramaic language understood the power of our mind energy and the connectedness of all creation.
As I watched the video I was struck by a deeper level of realization that the world can be seen as a loving energy system which is designed to help me identify any negative energy I have stored in my mind and body.  I can only heal those energies if I know they are there, and since I naturally try to hide them, escape from them, or deny them, I am often not aware of their existence.  So, once I learn that, “If I am in pain, I am in error.”, I can view as a gift any events which trigger pain, sadness, anger, shame, guilt, or any other negative emotion in me.  I can view these events as a gift because without the event I would remain unaware of the negative energy I had stored in me, and therefore be unable to dismantle it and heal it.  The longer negative thought/emotional energy is stored in my mind and body, the more it works to disintegrate my energy system and the more likely it is to be expressed as a physical pain or disease.
There was just something about watching the lecture this time which helped me realize at a new level, everything that happens is a gift for me, if I choose to use it to help me identify, and dismantle the negative energies in me which have been triggered.  It reminded me of another lecture in which Dr. Ryce describes the way Laws function, and how if someone jumps off a 500 ft cliff, there is no god of gravity who says, “Well, this person ignored the law of gravity, so I will punish them by breaking their bones when they reach the ground.”, or “Well, this person ignored the law of gravity, but they have been good most of their life, so I won’t punish them by breaking any bones when they reach the ground.”  The point is that the law of gravity works the way it works and those of us who recognize it and work within its functioning have a much easier time of it than those of us who try to ignore the way it works.
In just that way, if I look at everything that happens which triggers negative emotions in me as something that is helpful because it lets me know where I still have work to do to dismantle negative emotions in my life, it can be a tool which will help me love and enjoy life more, and perhaps even avoid disease and live longer.  If I look at everything that happens which triggers negative emotions in my life as someone else’s fault, or the natural result of living in a dangerous and hateful world, it will increase my stress, my fear, anxiety and anger and make my life much more difficult.
We were reminded inn this lecture that even the medical community these days believes that 80%-90% of all disease process is stress related.  This means that if I can remove the negative energy which causes the negative emotions in my life, and if I can increase the amount of time I spend with the energy of Love in my mind and body, I will decrease the stress and disease in my life.
The lecture also reviewed the Beatitudes from the ancient Aramaic translation which tells us that each Beatitude begins with words which can be translated as; “A latent neuro structure, implanted in your brain by God, to lead you to truth and health, will become your conscious possession, you who…”  This means that the Beatitudes are a set of instructions for how to activate and become aware of the hidden tools for perceiving the world accurately and staying in the energy of Love, or living with the mind of God, or the mind of Love.
There is more available on this topic at Dr. Michael Ryce’s website www.whyagain.com, including a summary of some of the translation work that has already been completed of the ancient Aramaic texts of the oldest known copy of the New Testament.
The support group portion of the meeting found several members reporting on the successes and struggles they have met throughout the week.  Two members experienced some intense synchronicity as they went through the week with the theme of Love and fear being presented repeatedly.  
Then the group helped a member work through a Reality Management Worksheet to heal some anger and aggravation the member had been experiencing during the week.  As usual this process was healing for the entire group.  The focus on this worksheet was the process of thinking and feeling a loving thought about the person who was the trigger for the negative emotions, and also thinking and feeling a loving thought about the person doing the worksheet. This is Step 5 in the 12 step Reality Management Worksheet (available free at www.whyagain.com).  
Many of  us race through this step in the process or get stymied by it because we are not able to FEEL loving feelings about the person or thing who/which triggered the negative emotions in us.  The group spent extra time and energy focused on tapping into the loving energy in each of us and working to hold that space of Love while thinking about the trigger for the negative emotions.  This produced a much greater result for the person writing out the worksheet last night.
We come from Love, we are made of Love, we are Love.  Everything else is false.

My Favorite Quotes From "The Mirror Theory" Vol. 2

“Don’t I get more holy by putting the needs of others first?” Since you can’t get any holier than you are, the only game is to recognize holiness.”

“As soon as you think
Someone else has to change
To make you happier,
The answer to happiness
Is lost.”

“I hate ego Charlie! Then it is winning its battle with you. Ego doesn’t care what makes you hateful, only that you are.”

“A person only suppresses when coping is difficult, but coping is equivalent to acceptance. Healing comes as soon as you ask why a certain emotion is horrible in the first place? Yes, I know its probably because someone told you it was. But who is that someone else? Isn’t it just another soul searching for Love? Why would that somebody else be more of an authority on okay feelings than you are?”

“Some are better at letting in light than others, but all have the free will to do it. Some look within to find it; some look without. But just because a soul belongs to this or that organization doesn’t mean its light is any brighter. Awareness has to do with how well you know yourself, not how well you tell others what you know.”

“As soon as life is appreciated, the wonder is understood. Philosophical questions are helpful or not depending on how you feel while pondering them. The soul in appreciation looks for all the good reasons it exists. The soul in doubt looks for the opposite, and if that isn’t masochistic, I don’t know what is.”

…nothing is a gift if the giver isn’t loved in the process.”