I was thinking about an apparent catch22 today I'd like to share. I, like many people, struggle with entropic behaviors in several domains of my life. Change in some of these is exceptionally difficult, and although I can tell I am making progress, I keep slipping up, making mistakes, hurting people, hurting myself...
The paradox is this: if you achieve "mastery" in a domain, that will give you power (i.e. you have the ability to consciously control it), but you must first get power in order to achieve mastery! How do we resolve this?
I think the trick is, we already have
the power, we are simply not exercising it. Where do we get it?
Maybe it is residual from previous incarnations--i.e. inherent QOC. But what if it's not?
I think the answer lies in the fact that our consciousness is immersed in the fundamental process of evolution. In other words, the system is set up to allocate power to those who consciously make choices to evolve.
On p. 165-7 of Awakening
, Tom says:
We are all constantly evolving our consciousness. Evolution forces choice and change. Remaining the same by choosing the no action option is not possible. Change cannot be avoided. Change can take place as either positive growth or negative deterioration; the individual choices you make ultimately determine the direction of your growth.
. . .
All you need is the will and the insuppressible drive (energy) to grow your being and the path, the process, to do so will appear before you. You are surrounded by opportunity to grow; your optimal path starts from wherever you are.
If we do not choose to be disciplined and commit to progress, there will be stagnation and neglect. If we do not choose to be selfless, we will be full of ego. If we do not choose to be courageous, we will be fearful. So power emerges simply by consciously changing our intent!
I find this similar to the Buddhist concept that we all possess Buddha mind, but fog and cover it up with our attachments to the world. Relinquish attachment with conscious attention, and unlock the light which already resides in our being.
So in my slip-ups lies the kernel of power to overcome slip-ups. Slip-ups, by their very existence, imply
progress. Just gotta continually be consciously aware of them and sincerely intend to progress with love for myself and the people around me, and even love for the whole process. It's so hard, but I guess that's the whole point of bootstrapping.
The bolded issue is the one that seems the most central .... others come later (it seems from my view).
On this site we tend to revert to information processing models and metaphors ... and they are pretty handy since everyone these days is familiar with the basic concepts of all that. RAM, processing speed, channel capacity and hard-drive cpacity have come a long ways ... but there once was a time when these were so limited that if you had much available in the way of software, you were careful not to run too many programs at once. You'd know when you were pushing it... things would run slower or even stop altogether. The same appears to be true when running a human operating system. As we grow and become more and more filled with the ideas (software) of the local culture. Many of these have substantial emotional charges ... which means that the software is always running in the background... it never gets turned off, and it is always draining resources... especially if it is actively being used. Much of it tends to be stuff that is not really useful to us ... unexamined beliefs and belief systems, including those about self, out of which ego is woven, judgments about self and others, it goes on and on. All this stuff takes up energy which then is not available for other projects.
There is a reason
why Tom and and other mystics warn about ego and belief systems!
Addressing the matter, Monroe referred to baggage, I think, in the form of beleif systems, attachments and addictions ... but he didn't get too explicit. Castenda addresses this very issue in many of his books... Journey to Ixtalan maybe being the most focused on it. Many of the chapters are titled after processes that Carlos is to engage in if he is to gain (that is, recover) enough power to 'achieve enlightenment' (there called 'stopping the world'). Some of those titles are "Losing self importance" , "Erasing Personal History", Disrupting Routines", ... here read some for yourself and see if you can make use of the ideas:http://www.uazone.org/naph/ccarlos/vera ... xtlan.html
Another critically important idea of Casteneda's which didn't get mentioned in that book (that I recall) was the idea of "The Recapitulation" ... a process where in one methodically revisits (with his attention) every incident in his life, withdrawing his power back from it, ejecting the energies of others that remain, and then giving the memory away (in the sense of no longer owning the thing personally ...called there 'rendering it up to the Eagle', or something like that). I don't think that Carlos gives all the elements of the the full process for that in any of his books, but he does give some of them.
As you follow those instructions, you will see that energy is released. This is not a fuzzy california airy fairy 'maybe I feel something' type energy: You can literally feel the change in vigor. When large chunks get unclogged, your chakras start fizzing and a fierce fire develops in the eyes. (Then you realize, or don't, that you had better intelligently manage this new energy ... otherwise you manage to lose it once again~)
I am also going to strongly re-recommend here the book "Breaking The Habit of Being Yourself". http://www.amazon.com/Breaking-The-Habi ... 1401938086
It would be a fit companion work-book with MBT. The fellow doesn't talk about digitality or TOEsterism specifically, but he does begin with the whole double split quantum puzzle business and cites other studies and facts (all verifiable) and then moves on to give practical techniques for managing your psyche ... becoming aware of, and then getting rid of things, processes and behaviors that you don't want and then targeting and manifesting things process and behaviors that you DO want. He had a very practical approach. You can get a taste of his style by just googleing the name of the book in quotes, he's (Dr. Joe Dispenza) all over the web... youtubes, essays, reviews, and has a website.
There are other sources of energy available, but in general (and to keep this post from getting too long) it is better to learn to effectively manage the resources that we already have before acquiring more.
Oh, as an after thought it occurs to me to say:
Don't worry about becoming love, lowering entropy etc etc. Those, like happiness, are more side effects and indicators that you are heading in the right direction. Seek Truth (with your heart more than your mind), practice Justice to the best of your ability, Hone your courage (which, really, is simply a firm commitment to those other two things) ... and the rest comes along of its own.
(As always, all just my opinion~)