Pathwork Guide Lecture No. 175
September 2, 1969
CONSCIOUSNESS: FASCINATION WITH CREATION
Greetings, all my friends here who receive tangible blessings in the form of energy currents containing consciousness and strength. They flow toward you and permeate you. They are a reality that can be perceived as your own consciousness grows and ventures forth.
I would like to talk about aspects of consciousness and its significance in the scheme of creation. Our work in the forthcoming months must deepen your comprehension of the power and significance of creative consciousness. Creation is indeed a result of consciousness and not, as generally assumed, the other way around. Nothing can be unless it first exists in consciousness, whether the consciousness is the universal spirit, the universal self, or whether it is the individualized self. Whether your consciousness perceives, creates, and formulates something important, world forming, or just a passing insignificant attitude, the principle is the same.
I have often discussed these facts and you know them, but you do not know them sufficiently. You still overlook the tremendous significance of your conscious creations, and your disconnection from them causes real suffering. No other suffering is as acute as the one felt when you do not know that you have created what you experience. This applies, to a lesser extent, even to positive experiences. For if you do not know that you have created your experiences, you will feel helpless in the hands of a power you cannot comprehend. This power is truly your own consciousness, my friends.
Now let us understand a little better some of the most outstanding attributes of consciousness. Consciousness is not only the power to think, to discriminate, and to choose; that is obvious. It is not only the power to know, to perceive, and to feel. It is also the ability to will. Willing is a very important aspect of consciousness. Whether you will with awareness or whether you disconnect from your will makes no difference. Your willing is an aspect of your consciousness and hence of what you continually create. Willing is an ongoing process, just as knowing and feeling are. Where consciousness exists, knowing, feeling, and willing always exist as well.
Often a number of contradictory will currents short-circuit on the surface, manifesting as a lack of awareness or numbness. Consciousness is diminished on the surface but continues to be active below the surface. Its products manifest as tangible life experiences and you feel at a loss, believing that what life brings is totally independent from your own willing and knowing. Any path of genuine development must bring all the confused and contradictory desires, beliefs, and the inner knowing to the surface so that life circumstances appear in their true light as the creation of the self. This awareness gives you power to recreate.
Willing an existing possibility, determining, formulating, knowing it, and perceiving these inner activities are the tools of your creative consciousness. Humanity can be divided into those who know this and use the tools deliberately, creatively, constructively, and those who are unaware of it and, victims of their ignorance, are constantly creating destruction without ever knowing it.
The human being is the first entity on the upward evolutionary scale who can deliberately create with consciousness. You, my friends, who search for your true identity must come to experience your power to create and, specifically, how you have created whatever you have or do not have now. You can then see how fighting against your own creations augments the pain and tension in your being. This is inevitable when you are not yet aware, generally and specifically, of how your life is the outcome of your mental activity. What you do not like you will invariably rebel against, never knowing that you actually tear yourself apart even more. The rebellion may not be entirely conscious either; it may manifest as vague discontent with life, hopeless longing, a sense of futility and frustration from which you see no way out. The discontent, too, is a kind of rebellion.
To understand the nature of consciousness in still greater depth, you need to see what positive and negative directions consciousness can take. You have within you the purest wisdom, flowing toward ever-expanding bliss, toward an infinite variety of new life expressions and a fullness of dimensions. This is the universal spirit. I am not saying that the universal spirit is in you; I am saying that you are it, but most of the time you do not know it. You also harbor within you the distorted expression of your creative consciousness with which you will negative and destructive results. One could also say that this is the eternal fight between God and the devil, between good and evil, between life and death. It does not matter what you call these powers. Their names depend on culture, fashion, interpretation, personal preference and approach to the world. Whatever you name them, they are your own powers. You are not a helpless pawn in anyone's hands. This is the all-important fact that truly alters your entire self-perception and attitude toward living. Not knowing this will make you feel constantly victimized by circumstances beyond your control.
In order to perceive and experience your true identity as universal spirit, three conditions are necessary:
1) You must tune into it. Knowing of its existence will make this possible. You activate the universal spirit by your deliberate attempt to listen to it. You must become very quiet within yourself and allow it to happen. This is not as easy as it may sound, for the tumultuous static of the busy mind keeps blocking this possibility. Your mind requires training to become sufficiently calm without producing involuntary thoughts. Once you have accomplished this to some degree, you will experience an emptiness. You will then seem to listen into nothingness -- that may even be frightening or disappointing. Finally, the universal spirit will begin to manifest -- not because it "decides" to reward you for having been a "good child" who now "deserves" it, but because you begin to perceive its ongoing presence, knowing that this presence was always there and immediately accessible -- almost too near to be perceived.
The first manifestations may not come to you as a direct voice, a direct inner knowing, but through detours -- through other mouths, and later as apparently coincidental ideas that suddenly occur to you. If you are alert and sensitive, attuned to inner reality, you will know that these are the first signs of establishing contact with the universal spirit. Later the emptiness will prove to be a tremendous fullness impossible to express in words. Its immediacy also hinders you from perceiving the universal spirit's constant presence. The immediacy is, of course, wonderful. When you discover that you harbor this presence within yourself at all times, it will fill you with safety, with strength, with the knowledge that you never need to feel inadequate and helpless again, for the source of all life supplies you with every smallest detail of living that is important to you. The inner source fills you with rich feelings; it stimulates and calms you; it shows you how to handle problems. It offers solutions that unify decency, honesty, and self-interest; love and pleasure; reality and bliss; fulfillment of your duties without diminishing your freedom in the least. It contains everything. However, this wonderful immediacy presents problems at first, because you believe that all this can be sought only very, very far away. Since you were geared to experience the universal spirit only as a remote reality you find it impossible to experience its nearness.
2) You must fully experience and comprehend the part of your consciousness that has become negative and destructive. We have concentrated heavily on accomplishing this in our pathwork. But this is not easy, precisely because, once again, you are geared to believe that your life is a fixed mold you were put into and you must learn to cope with, independently of your inner processes of thinking, willing, knowing, feeling, and perceiving. As you can now appreciate, it requires a great deal of honesty, discipline, and effort to overcome resistance to make this all-important switch in your entire approach to life: from feeling helpless to seeing life as your own creation in all respects. It is not possible to activate the ever-present universal self when you are still blind to your negative creations. Sometimes certain channels happen to be unobstructed, but where the blocks, the blindness, the imagined helplessness persist, you cannot contact your universal self.
3) Your conscious thought processes give you the first possibility to contact the universal spirit. You create with your conscious thinking just as much as with your unconscious thinking and willing. Your thinking ability is the same as the creative processes of the universal mind. Though your consciousness is a separated fragment of the whole, it has the same powers and possibilities. The separation is not even real; it exists only because you experience yourself as separate at this time. The moment you discover the immediacy of this presence, you will no longer feel a separation between your thoughts and those of the greater Being. Eventually they will merge and you will realize that the two have always been one. You do not avail yourself of your innate powers. You leave them unused, or even misuse them in your blind state.
You can finally begin to experience yourself as the universal spirit by using your conscious thoughts in a deliberate, constructive way. You can do this in two steps. First, you must clearly see how you have unknowingly used your mental processes negatively, thereby creating destructively. Then you can formulate what you now wish to produce in your life. You do this by creating the thought forms, by stating that this is possible, and by perceiving, knowing, and willing it with a relaxed attitude. This also includes the willingness to change faulty and dishonest inner attitudes, for otherwise you will block what you want.
By building thought forms of creative unfoldment you can tap the rich source within your own being. You begin with conscious thinking, which requires focusing attention on your thinking processes -- much too close to be easily recognized -- observing how you use them, how they create both what you do have and do not have. Once you can reverse these processes you have discovered a tool of creation; you become truly your real self, for you are the universal spirit who created the world. You are constantly creating your own world right now: it is the life you lead.
Paying attention to your inner processes will reveal that much of what you thought was unconscious is not hidden at all. Observe this especially when you find yourself in a disturbing situation. See how you take so much for granted that you gloss over your most obvious attitudes, exactly those which will give you clues to understand how your creative powers work, although in this case, of course, they are inverted, manifesting negatively. Considering every detail of the situation, expanding the range of your attention by finding a fresh approach, will bring the insight you have been lacking so far.
This self-knowledge is purification in the truest sense, because ultimately it establishes your awareness of your power to create your own life. Discovering how you have created destructively is never just a bad experience, for it becomes immediately obvious that you also have the power to create beautiful life experiences for yourself. You become immediately aware of your eternal nature with its infinite power to expand.
So you see, my friends, we are dealing here with three levels. All of them must become accessible. They are all equally difficult to perceive. It would be an error to believe that your everyday thinking processes are easier to perceive than either your destructive willing or your divine nature with its endless power and wisdom. They are all equally near -- and seem far only because your vision is turned away from them. Both the willful destructiveness and the great creative spirit you really are, are "unconscious" only because you do not give their existence the benefit of the doubt as a first step toward discovering them. The same is true of your daily mental activity, which goes on unobserved, without critical evaluation, so you are unaware of how your thoughts run in the same unproductive negative channels. Nor do you see that you derive a sort of satisfaction from allowing the inattention to go on.
When you observe your negative thoughts, it is important to realize (a) what they do to you, how they connect with the very results you deplore most in your life; and (b) that you have the power to alter them and find new avenues of expression for your thoughts. These two realizations will make all the difference in the world, because they bring true liberation and self-finding, the coming-into-one's-own we speak so much about. The discovery of your true identity indeed brings glad tidings. But first you must see yourself pursuing negative thoughts. See yourself brooding in the same vicious circles; see yourself almost willfully pursuing the same roundabout, narrowly confined channels of thinking and never venturing beyond them.
Let us suppose that you are convinced you can experience only this or that negative manifestation in life. Once you observe the tenacity with which you take this for granted, you can ask, "Does it really have to be so?" The moment you raise the question you begin to open a crack in the door. Your being unaware that you are convinced of having only this one narrowly confined possibility makes it impossible for you to imagine further alternatives. You can actually venture into them -- by first formulating your thoughts as the blueprints of creating. Then the world begins to open. The opening must be achieved, to begin with, by thinking, by saying to yourself, "It does not have to be this way, it can be another way. I want the other way. I would like to eliminate whatever stands between me and the more desirable way. I have the courage to face it and go beyond the life experience I have given myself until now by taking for granted that it cannot be different." On this conscious level you must see how you have taken the experience of negative manifestation for granted.
Perhaps you want a positive result, and at the same time you do not wish to accept the logical consequences due to the misconception that they are undesirable for you. Here you have a childish resistance to giving of yourself, a distorted attempt to cheat life and gain more than you wish to give. Life cannot comply with such unfair desires, and you feel cheated and resentful because you have not clearly examined the issue. Nor are you aware of your false reasoning when you resist giving of yourself. Thus you create forms of error and distortion that stand in the way of unfolding your possibilities.
So you can see that the level of your conscious thinking is influenced by both your destructive side and the universal spirit. You can choose consciously in which direction to shape your thoughts once you are aware of their habitual patterns. This self-determination is your key to liberation.
You will see more and more clearly that your destructive side is also something you choose; it is not something that befalls you. Once you have truly progressed on this path you come to the point where you can finally admit the deliberate desire to choose destructive attitudes. You can see that you are actually forsaking happiness, fulfillment, bliss, fruitful living. You may be terribly unhappy about the result, but you nevertheless insist on hanging on to your negative will. You can see how all-important it is to find this out.
The age-old question is: What brought all this about? Why do human beings harbor these utterly senseless desires? Why does the mind want to take this direction? Religion calls it sin or evil. Psychology calls it neurosis or psychosis, among other things. Whatever name you give it, it is indeed a disease. In order to heal the disease it is necessary to understand it to some extent, primarily by following your own erroneous assumptions and beliefs to the emotions and will-direction they create. Without under standing the dynamics of mental creativity, both in the positive and in the negative sense, this can be achieved only to a limited degree.
People often ask, "How does evil come into existence?" "Why did God put evil into us?" -- as though someone else had "put" anything anywhere. Once you have sufficient self-awareness and discover that it is you who rejects happiness, the same puzzling question may be put differently: "Why do I do it? Why can't I want what feels good for me?" This question has been asked here, as well as elsewhere in the world, many times, wherever spiritual teachings are being given. Once, a long time ago, at the beginning of this contact, I even gave an allegorical account of the so-called fall of the angels. I talked about a spirit who was once utterly constructive, expanding into forever greater realms of light and bliss, who deviated from this course, separating himself from his innermost Godself, and became fragmented. How did he turn into those dark, destructive channels? Any such account, given here or elsewhere, is very easily misunderstood when interpreted as a historical event that took place in time and space. I shall venture now to give another explanation about how destructiveness comes into being in a wholly constructive consciousness. I shall try to find a different approach that may reach you on some level and give you a deeper understanding of this all-important topic. You can then meet your own destructiveness with a new understanding and eventually come out of it.
Picture, my friends, a consciousness, a state of being, in which there is only bliss and infinite power to create with one's own consciousness. Consciousness is, among other things, a thinking apparatus. Thus it thinks -- and, lo, something comes into existence. It wills -- and lo, what is willed and thought, is. Life is endlessly filled with possibilities. Creating starts with thinking, then the thinking takes on form, becomes a fact in the life beyond the confines of the ego, in the life that is free, where consciousness is free-flowing and free-floating. There the thought immediately takes form and becomes deed. It is only in the human ego that thought seems separate from form and deed. The less awareness an entity has, the more separated thought, form, and deed appear, to the extent that the form seems entirely independent from the deed, the deed from the thought or the will. None of these three stages seem connected.
An essential part of raising one's consciousness lies precisely in making this connection. No matter how separate in time and space they may appear, thought, will, action, and manifestation are all one unit. In the state of being, where there is no confinement, where there is no tight structuring, this unit is experienced as a living reality of indescribable bliss and fascination. The whole universe is open for exploration, for new ways of self-expression and self-finding, giving form to forever more worlds, more experience, and more effects. The fascination of creating is endless.
Since the possibilities are infinite, consciousness can also explore itself by confining itself, by fragmenting itself to "see what happens," as it were. To experience itself it contracts instead of expanding; instead of exploring further light, it wants to see how it is to feel and experience darkness. Creating is pure fascination. This fascination is not eliminated simply because what is created is at first perhaps slightly less pleasurable or blissful or brilliant. Even in that may lie a special fascination and adventure. Then the creation begins to take on a power of its own. For everything that is created has energy invested in it and this energy is self-perpetuating. It takes on its own momentum. The consciousness who has created these pathways may experiment longer, and going beyond what is "safe," it no longer leaves itself enough power at the moment to reverse the course. Thus the consciousness may get lost in its own momentum, unwilling to stop. Later, it no longer sees how to stop. Creation then takes place in a negative sense, until the results are so unpleasant that the consciousness seeks to get a hold on itself and counteract the momentum by "recalling" its knowledge of what could be. At any rate, it knows there is no real danger, for whatever suffering you human beings feel is truly illusory in the ultimate sense. Once you find your true identity within, you will know it. It is all a play, a fascination, an experiment, from which your real state of being can be recaptured, if only you will truly try.
Now, many human beings still find themselves in the state in which they do not yet want to really try. They still find fascination in the exploration of negative creation, at least to some extent. Some separated entities have never gone beyond the point where they lose the immediate awareness of who they really are and of their power to redirect their explorations. Others have temporarily lost this awareness. But they will find it again the moment they really want to. It is well that all of you should remember this.
The momentum of creating contains incredibly powerful energies. These energies have impact; they impress the all-pervading creative substance -- the stuff which responds to creative mind. This substance then is molded into form, event, object, state of mind, or whatever. The imprints in the soul substance are so deep that nothing but the greater power of molding mind can erase false imprints, which govern your life events. Mind or consciousness impresses; life substance is impressed upon. Everything around and within you participates in both the masculine principle of a determining, etching consciousness and the feminine principle of a molded, responding life substance. Find this truth within you, and the universe will become yours all over again, as it once was.
Thus, if the creative consciousness does not alter the course at a certain point, it becomes caught within its own processes. Part of the power and momentum of consciousness is the quality of being "self-imitating." It is very hard to convey this aspect of creative energy. Human beings frequently experience the urge to imitate others. This takes on many forms and applies to self-imitation as well. It is a process of deeply imprinting something upon the substance of life.
Let me give you an example of the power of imitation and creation of new experiences. Many of you, when you see a cripple who limps, or perhaps has a facial tick, experience a strange urge to imitate his postural or facial aberrations. Haven't you experienced the sometimes irresistible desire to imitate something that is highly undesirable for you? At the same time you feel revulsion and fear because you sense that somehow you set something in motion that you might repeat again and again without being able to stop. The power and the energies of creation have a self-perpetuating effect that only consciousness, with its knowing, will, and determination can alter. Creating becomes so involving, and the pleasure of it so engrossing that, once set in a negative direction, the pleasure continues to keep the soul in its spell until consciousness steps in with its deliberate counterforce. Even if what is created is painful, the pleasure of creating is difficult to abandon as long as the individual ignores that positive creation is also possible.
As negative creations proceed, consciousness seems to become more and more fragmented -- which is not really so, my friends. What happens is that you lose awareness of your connection with the world spirit, which is who you are.
I do not know to what extent these words can reach you. But if they can, they will prove of tremendous help for you as you meditate and think about them. They will help you not only to comprehend, but to find the right way to eliminate the destructiveness within you. It is the power of your mind that creates the negative. This force is even stronger when it is used for the positive because in the negative there are always conflicts, contrary longings and will directions that weaken the force. In the constructive, expanding direction, this need not be so. Once the switch is made, something will "click" in your mind. Your consciousness will flow into a new direction that comes more easily and naturally, without the torture inherent in negative creation.
The more consciousness has separated itself from the whole, the more fragmented it becomes, the greater the structure it creates. But the wholeness of consciousness is unstructured; it is the state of being in all its blissfulness. Once fragmentation has occurred, lost consciousness gradually works toward a state of self-consciousness. This state needs structure to protect it from the chaos of negativity and destruction. When negativity is met and eliminated, unstructured, blissful consciousness is attained again.
The ego, with its confinement, is the structure that protects the entity from its own destructive creating. It holds the destructive urges in check. Only when consciousness expands in bliss and truth can the structure be removed. So, at one point in your evolution, you were chaotically unstructured. As you grow and evolve, the structuring walls off the chaos, so that at least for a while consciousness can function without being hindered by the inner chaos.
The thinking processes available to your consciousness can then become the tools to show the way out of negative creations and confining structuring. Looking beyond the structure and into the chaos, comprehending it, realizing the power of the mental processes you constantly use, affords you the possibility to reverse the downward curve that makes you ceaselessly seek ways to deny life, love, pleasure, happiness; to court decay, waste, and pain. The part of your universal self that has remained whole knows the pain is short and illusory, but the part of you that is in chaos does not know this and suffers.
Let us review. Conscious processes can swing the pendulum from destructive creating to the original state of consciousness, an expanding blissful creating. The confining structure will dissolve, and the ultimate state of being, unstructured consciousness and experience, energy and blissful being, will reinstate themselves and become your existence. This is where it is all going, my friends. Part of your attempts must therefore go in the direction of bringing order into the confusion of the workings of your mind, its self-involvement, its blindness to itself and its tendency to get lost to itself. It is not the world outside yourself that confuses you; it is the world within your own consciousness that does so.
You can now begin to contemplate how you can deliberately will creative construction; you can do it by consciously formulating, thinking, and willing a state of happiness, aliveness, fulfillment, truth, love, growth, both in general and in particular detail. The climate of this may first seem strange and unfamiliar. You need to acclimatize yourself to it. Picture yourself in such states and call upon the universal power within to fortify your conscious mind with the necessary creative energy. The will to happiness must become so strong that the causes for unhappiness can be seen and eliminated, and this, too, must truly be wanted. Then the creative power will grow; the divine self will inspire you and show the way. You will learn to recognize it and receive it in your conscious brain.
This is a rough outline or plan for this working season. The progress that has been made by my friends will enable them to make use of what I have said here. I mean actively make use, not just reading this as a beautiful theory, but deeply knowing its immediate value and applying it every day of your life. On the day when you see your destructive creating and then deliberately change it, you will indeed have done something wonderful. The will to be happy and to unfold in life is the foundation of your power to create. The more concisely this is formulated and the greater your willingness is to eliminate attitudes that hinder the result, the more effective your creation will become.
Be blessed. Receive the power that is streaming forth, and increase it by your conscious, deliberate, willing expressions and formulations. Express your willingness to grow, to be happy, to be constructive. Do this not by willing in a tight, insistent, constricted way, but in a relaxed, confident way, contemplating that all possibilities exist as potential realities, realizable the moment you know and will them with your undivided being. The power is there, it is in you. All you have to do is tap it, use it, build with your conscious mind the channels that can free it, and become very quiet and calm. Listen and tune in on it. It is there forever and ever, in its majestic power, in its wonderful wisdom, in its ultimate knowledge that there is nothing but bliss, already now, within you.
Edited by Judith and John Saly
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