Be in the world. Survey your life and others’ lives. Ask with specificity, what makes them feel happy. Or if you would like, ask them what makes them feel sad. Whether positive or negative, all feelings are valid. Some will have many answers to that question. And many answers will differ from person to person, and context to context. Some will be common amongst others too, of course.
Regarding the state of being happy, it could be; being with their family, spending time in nature, reading in the privacy of their home, travelling etc. Regarding the state of being sad, it could also be; being with their family, spending time in nature, reading in the privacy of their home, travelling etc.
People can experience the same external manifestations differently. And all expressions are valid including your own, whatever it may be specifically for you. The permutations of material form and externalized occurrences that can extend from a single state, such as happiness or sadness, are infinite.
For the unbounded Soul incarnated in human form, the choices to experience are inexhaustible. The realities from which the Soul can cast its attention and eventually embody, is like a big candy store a baby can select his or her preferred sweets from. Whether sweet or sour, savory or spicy–he or she will delight at the possibilities.
So it is with the human experience. There is a privelege and joy to selecting your incarnation. Being human is precious. Experience is precious. Or we wouldn’t be here having our human experience. Take away someone’s experience, deprive them of experience … and they have nothing.
And as one of my main teachers Carl Buchheit says (and I’m paraphrasing), even those who believe there is something beyond experience, are simply having an experience beyond experience. It’s still experience. So, with regards to facilitating change for a human being, Carl taught me to keep in mind this, Keep in mind … of all the experiences available in the universe, your client is choosing to have this one.”
Experience is all we have. It is our currency.
A collection of learnings we place within our heart.
A theme of tunes we record within our Soul.
Which leads me to our next phase of discussion …
In the space of personal developement and self-help, a hot topic widely discussed is one about beliefs. In particular, the importance of obliterating limiting beliefs and adopting new and healthy beliefs. The definition of beliefs are far and wide.
They are commonly referred to as filters through which boundless energy becomes organized matter. Put simply, what we perceive we experience as fact. So if we want our experience to change, we must change the belief structures that organize it.
Common advice will include reversing beliefs (e.g. “People don’t like me” to “People love and enjoy having me around”) or installing new ones by affirming and affirming them until the many versions of mind and Self, accept them as self-fulfilling truths themselves (e.g. “I am healthy, strong, and wise”).
These recommended forms of practice have their uses. However, in this post, I intend to deepen and extend our insight about the art of believing. We shall also honor the importance of their operating, and share a simple choice-enabling maneuvre that respects what you are experiencing now, and empowers you to re-choose your experience again.
Firstly, what we believe generates our experience and vice versa. On the premise that experience is precious, then whatever we believe is precious too; whether they generate pleasure, pain or both. The word “belief” is derived from Be-Leven, which in Old English means to hold dear or make dear.
To believe is to hold dear. So there you are, with regards to all that you believe and hence all that you experience, notice what it is like to realize that all you experience is dear. Notice how your experience of your experience changes … that’s right.
So, with regards to the ways you believe, and in the context of personal change and transformation, we do not necessarily want to be hasty in changing the way you believe. Especially without respecting how precious it is to believe what you believe, and the intended positive outcomes their operations are in service to. For the human, and the resident Soul.
For the human, what we believe is a convenience feature. It is useful to generalize that one shouldn’t put their fingers on flames, because that can hurt and damage their tissue. That way, we don’t have to re-decide about a lot of aspects of life, each and every unfolding moment. It would be pretty annoying, actually.
Additionally, for those who have read my Art of Personal Change series, all that we believe also helps keep us safe from experiences we thought would kill us in the past, but didn’t. So before changing what we believe, building rapport and respect for what has been and has continued to be, is important. Without Rapport, we can triggers versions of ourselves to go into fight, flight, and freeze against us. This is far from what we would like to do.
For the resident Soul, of all the experiences to experience, and of all the ways which this human being could believe, they are having this particular set of precious experiences. For those who have read my previous posts, we want to wonder, what is the intended positive behind all that?
And before we change things, are we taking sides with the client to war against themselves, or to unify themselves and re-vise things such that they are more congruent to who they are as human beings, now? These are important considerations. Because the man who would cut his limb off to celebrate his skill with the knife, soon learns the futility of transformation by amputation.
Change is better birthed from a unified stance with Self, rather than a fractured and factioned stance.
That is not to say I am not clumsy often, when I facilitate the work. It also isn’t to say I exercise over-vigilance about the efficacy, in fear that if I suddenly change things too quickly, I might do them wrong. Because ultimately, just like no help and be given to those who do not want it, no harm can be done to those who do not want it either. Ultimately, the resident Soul authorizes what can or can’t be. It is beyond my authority to superseed their authority.
However, I was taught a style of attention that is one of appreciating the whole and what is, before working with the client to re-cast their experience of life. This specific style of attention and appreciation, is what makes the work my peers and I facilitate, distinct. And we celebrate our style of service.
Lastly, I would like to share our relationship with beliefs, that is distinct to those you will find in the personal growth and self-help industry. Most of the self-help industry and personal growth industry refers to beliefs as things we have (nominalizations), rather than actions we take.
A nominalization is the use of a word that is not a noun, but treated as a noun. Simply put, you can’t put a belief in a physical bucket. Although you can have ongoing beliefs about life. This key distinction is critical. When we relate to beliefs as “things.” we automatically presuppose their solidity. This form of fixed attention is the reason so much unwanted experience continues. Remembering that matter and occurences are a product of our fixed attention, whether we are aware of it or not.
Whereas, we know beliefs are fluids, and more adjustible than we fundamentally presuppose. Beliefs are actions we operationalize rather than things we have. We are believing our reality into existence, less so constructing our reality with beliefs. When we realize we are believing less so having beliefs, we have choice about what we choose to believe. Notice how much easier it is to adjust fluid action than solid matter.
Transmute beliefs from “things” to “-ings” (believing, to believe, and believe)
In Carl’s terms, we denominalize what has been nominalized, in order to have more choice about what we believe and hence what we experience. That is to say, we “loosen” the fixture that stabilizes an experience, so it can be molded for other use.
So the whole point of this discussion? All experience is precious. Even the experience that it is not. All believing is precious. Even believing it is not.
Human by Choice,