CONNECTION BETWEEN EGO AND UNIVERSAL POWER
Key Extracts from Lecture 152
© The Pathwork® Foundation 1999
Every individual consciousness is universal consciousness. It would not be correct to state that it is a part of it, for a part implies it is only a little of it, a fragment of a whole. Wherever consciousness exists at all, it is all of original consciousness.
This original consciousness, the creative life principle, individualizes itself in varied forms. When individualization surpasses a certain point and progresses beyond the state of knowing its connection with its origin, a disconnect comes into existence. Thus consciousness continues to exist and to contain the possibilities of universal consciousness, but it is oblivious of its own nature, its laws, and its potentials. This, in short, is the state of human consciousness, as a whole.
One of the universal life principle's basic characteristics – whether in its aspect of autonomous consciousness or as energy – is that it is spontaneous. It cannot manifest in any other way but spontaneously. It cannot possibly reveal itself as a result of a direct laborious process, derived at in a cramped and overconcentrated state. Therefore its manifestation is always an indirect result. It occurs when it is least expected. By ‘indirect,’ I mean that man must of course make efforts. He must overcome resistance in order to face himself in truth, to admit his problems and shortcomings, to shed his illusions. This does require a great deal of effort. He must summon all the strength and courage he can possibly muster at all times. But the effort must be expanded for the sake of seeing the truth about oneself, for the sake of giving up a specific illusion, for the sake of overcoming a barrier to wanting to be constructive rather than destructive, for the sake of seeing all there is to see in oneself – and not for the sake of an as yet theoretical process called self-realization that promises to feel good.
Individualization is an integral aspect of the universal life power. Since life is always moving, reaching out, expanding and contracting, finding new areas of experience and branching into new boundaries, creative life itself cannot be different. Thus it finds forever new forms to experience itself. As I said before, if individualization separates itself further and further in its own consciousness from its original source – when it ‘forgets,’ so to speak, its essence and becomes oblivious of its own principles and laws – it seems a totally separate entity. Therefore it is quite understandable that it can identify itself only as a separate entity. It can associate individual existence only with separate existence. Thus, giving up its ego must appear to it as annihilation of its own unique individuality.
…he who begins to experience these powers and energies also begins to notice, first only here and there, but more and more steadily, the influx of an inspirational intelligence that seems to be much vaster than anything he knows of in his outer intellect. Yet it is essentially his ‘best self.’ It first seems to be a foreign power, but it is not. It only seems so because these channels had been clogged up – due to ignorance of their existence, due to not even considering their possibility, due to the personal little lies and self-deceptions. This vaster intelligence manifests as inspiration, guidance, and a new form of intuition that comes not in a vague feeling, but in concise words, in definite knowledge, graspable and translatable into daily living. The discovery of this new life reconciles the apparent opposites of being a unique individual and being at one with all others, being an integral part of a whole. These are no longer irreconcilable opposites, but interdependent facts. All such opposites, all apparently mutually exclusive alternatives that present so much heartache to man begin to fall into place when the ego connects with universal life.
When the ego becomes strong enough to take the risk to trust other faculties than its limited conscious ones, it will find a new security hitherto undreamed of. The fear of this new step is governed by the idea that the ego will be crushed, it will fall into nothingness and cease to exist. This fear is alleviated by holding on to unmoving, petrified psychic substances. The unmoving seems safe, the moving perilous. This is why life is feared, for life is eternally moving. When the moving is found to be safe because it carries you, you have found the only real security there is. All other security – trust in and leaning on the static – is illusory and breeds forever more fear.
But once you pay attention to it and elicit the powers available in you again and again so that you will notice your shame and your hiding and will learn to uncover yourself, you will finally step out of your protective shell and become more real. You will be the naked you, as you are now, not better than you are, not worse than you are, and also not different from the way you are. You will stop the imitation, the counterfeit feelings and ways of being, and venture out into the world the way you happen to be.