79 QUESTION: I have a deformity which is a hindrance in my thinking and ability. What do I need to know and how can I find the strength to overcome this?
ANSWER: Well, my dear, dear friend, the only truth I can tell you in this respect is that you will find the strength only by complete understanding of the negative emotions that still exist in you and of which you are unaware, whether in direct connection with this matter or not. This is the only way.
The real, pure, permanent strength can only come through the painstaking piecemeal work of daily analysis of one’s negative reactions, emotions, impressions and moods. There is no other way. Instead of passing them by half the time, as you all tend to do, by either putting them out of your mind or ascribing them to outer reasons – which at times may be quite logical – you should investigate these reactions with will and vigor to find the hidden wrong conclusion.
For, if there is a disturbance, a disharmony or an unhappiness, no matter how much outer circumstances lend themselves to explain it, an inner wrong conclusion, a wrong impression about the facts and about reality, must exist. This simple truth is being constantly forgotten, even by my friends who work on this Path.
If you keep in mind that any negative feeling, be it lack of strength or whatever else, is in some way the sign that you are not in truth, you are bound to take the right steps that will enable you to find, out of untruth, the truth that strengthens.
Motivations of actions, as well as desires and ambitions, have to be examined with a maximum of self-honesty. The outer, conscious motivations may be true, but keep in mind that they are not necessarily the only existing motivations. Find those which slumber underground. Take them out of hiding and view them in the clear light of consciousness.
Unfortunately, humanity is made up of nine-tenths pretense, in one way or another. All your compulsions, drives, and a good part of your motivations, are to a large extent the result of pretense. This does not only refer to the desire to appear better than you are, in order to belong, to be loved and accepted, it also applies to negative emotions such as hate, resentment and contempt.
If you look deeply enough, you will find that you superimpose not only positive but also negative emotions on your genuine feelings. You produce artificial feelings because you are under the impression that this is the way you are supposed to feel. You cultivate these artificial feelings for a long time, until they become part of you, so that you can no longer distinguish between the real and the false you.
Only this work will finally bring you to the point where you realize, sometimes quite suddenly, that these emotions are false. You have them because of a wrong conclusion and an unrealistic desire. You are under the mistaken impression that you will get what you want by feeling, reacting and being in a way that is not really you, that is destructive.
Once you find this hidden reasoning process, you will realize the pretense and its complete futility, and you will shed it as the burden it is. Thus you will become real. This will free your intuitive faculties so that they can take over and function properly.
The picture looks roughly like this: consciously one is often unaware of negative emotions, be they resentment, hate or contempt. As far as valid desires are concerned, one is conscious only of their constructive purpose, while ignoring the false motivations beneath. After some exploration in the right direction, one finds the existence of such negative emotions, as well as the existence of additional motivations, which may be childish, unrealistic and unproductive.
At that point, you don’t yet understand why this entire layer exists. Upon further search, however, you will find the real reason. As I have said before, you discover that you have assumed your pretense in the mistaken idea that you will then belong and be accepted, admired and loved.
Then, after making your choice, you will learn that even if this attitude could bring you the desired result – which, of course, it cannot – it would not be worth your while, and you will give it up. You will shed the pretense of positive and negative attitudes, trends, desires and motivations. Instead you will assume genuine attitudes, desires and motivations.
These words will make sense to all of you who have come across this area of your being. The others will understand them only after this has been accomplished.
Compulsion is a result of artificially accelerated emotions, desires and ambitions. The artificiality, in turn, is the result of pretense. The pretense is a result of a mistaken view of cause and effect; a mistaken judgement: “If I am, or feel, or do thus and thus, I will obtain such and such.”
This entire process is so subtle and most of the time so hidden that it is impossible to recognize from a superficial investigation of the self. But wherever problems in life exist, as you well know, inner problems must be their cause. Such inner problems are always connected with this process of pretense, in one way or another. Needless to say, pretense prohibits real healthy strength because such strength can only come from the real self, which is entirely covered up by the false layer of a pseudo-self.
Another factor that contributes to prohibiting strength is the mistaken time concept. By this I mean the attitude of impatience. The inner child causes you to rush ahead, to think you must have now whatever it is you think you should have. This too causes artificially produced acceleration – and therefore compulsion. Since impatience is not in accordance with truth either, it has the same effect and produces a similar set of chain reactions as the pretense. In fact, these two are often interacting. False motivations cause impatience.
The strong, often unconscious, desire to belong in the world that seems most desirable to you produces impatience. It causes you to assume artificial attitudes and emotions. Since neither this desirable world, nor the way you go about obtaining it, is based on reality or truth, your real self is covered up, and hence your real strength.
What I said here applies to every human being in one way or another. But it also answers your question. Your outer deformation is not the reason for your lack of strength in this respect. It may appear that way, but believe me, it is not. The inner processes are at the root of it. If you should find and change these currents, I can promise you, in spite of the outer physical difficulty, strength will come to you in a way that you may not believe possible now.
Your inner strength will flow out the moment the subterfuges, the superimposed, compulsive feelings are shed. And this, in turn, can only be done after you are utterly aware of their existence. You see, my friend, you constantly manufacture an artificial strength, using compulsive elements to build it up. The more you do this, the more you undermine and prohibit the real strength. This real strength can only begin to function if you first have the courage to free yourself of the artificially produced strength, and investigate its origin and the inner reasoning processes.
I cannot be more personal than this. What I said can and should open the way for you to find all of what I indicated existing in you, as it exists in every human being. If this work is not done systematically, and with the help and cooperation of another person, one can accomplish only so much and not more.
I must say, as well as it can be done alone, you have made a very good start. In many ways, you are proceeding amazingly well, my friend. But without the systematic help of an objective person, this work will remain limited. Certain areas remain where you do not see clearly yet, where you cannot get ahead inwardly.
This is bound to happen when one doesn’t have help. If there is a will for intensified search with the help of someone else, a way will be found sooner or later. Then, and then only, will you realize how much I have told you now. But to be told, even if more specifically, and to listen with one’s brain, can never suffice. You know that.
QUESTION: [Another person] May I add something? Since I have been working, as one of the oldest members of the group, I find that if we do shed some negative attitudes, it is so gradual that, even after three and a half years, I am now just at the beginning of what needs to be done. Complete healing may take many, many years, and perhaps I won’t even get to it in this life. Certainly, for our friend here who asked this question, it is much more difficult because he talked about a deformity which is very difficult for him. What he really wants to do is to sing, and certainly he gets impatient, and he can’t conquer it in this life.
ANSWER: The outer, physical deformity is no graver than the soul deformities all human beings have to some degree. It is your human illusion to believe an outer deformity stands more in the way than an inner one, merely because you can see the one and not the other. In case our friend should find the inner obstacles, it would be possible to achieve outer success, too. It will then be seen that the outer deformity need not stand in the way.
What you said about slow progress is true to a certain extent. But here again, it varies with each individual and with each problem. There are certain problems in some inner makeups that are not as locked and blocked as others. Although this is slow work, each tiny step forward brings liberation and matters a great deal.
This you can evaluate only when you gain a retrospective, overall view. There are moments in your life when you gain glimpses of how far you have come, how much you have changed while involved in this work. While you are in the process, you do not notice how decisive is each tiny step forward. Each step seems little, and yet it counts tremendously as part of the whole. Is that clear?
QUESTION: Yes, it is clear. You said to him that he will get the strength after he has found all these processes, but that is the hardest thing to find. To find oneself is such a big order. If he has to wait to get the strength only then, afterwards…?
ANSWER: Gradually, little by little. You have all noticed, in the course of this work, how after each insight and liberation a new strength surges out of you. It may disappear again, temporarily, when you tackle a new aspect, but each step forward brings more strength.
QUESTION: We are on this Path because we want to develop ourselves, whether or not we can realize certain ambitions. But he still wants to attain his ambitions.
ANSWER: I can only say what I see obstructs his ambitions. Whether he tries to dissolve these obstructions because of a desire for development, peace and harmony, or due to a more direct aim of a particular ambition, is not even the point here. I can only show where I see the hindrance.
To start the process of finding and dissolving the obstruction will not delay the realization. Even though the work may be long, it is the only way to really free inherent capacities. The very impatience that is a result of the inner processes described before, is a problem in itself. The greater the impatience, the greater also the mistaken belief that it will produce results. In reality, however, it has the exact opposite effect. It paralyzes all the genuine attributes that are necessary for fulfillment.
QUESTION: [Another person] May I add something to this discussion? I have a feeling that a certain misunderstanding may exist here that confuses impatience and striving. I think it was understood that he should not strive anymore in the direction of his ambition. Also I feel that nothing is so locked, no matter how hard or how short the life span, that something cannot be gained in this lifetime. It is a question of personal work. Isn’t that right? There is nothing so locked that it cannot be dissolved.
ANSWER: That is absolutely right. If the will is there, any inner problem can be solved. It is also right that my words should not be interpreted to mean that our friend should give up striving for his ambition. But the difference between healthy, relaxed striving and frenzied, compulsive impatience has to be seen. The latter can be dispensed with only if it is understood.
QUESTION: To make it clear, may I say that perhaps the impatience is in seeking a shortcut, which is unrealistic. The goal is unattainable in that way.
ANSWER: Yes. And also the motivations which are not fully recognized. There are some unrealistic, immature and distorted motivations, in addition to the conscious valid ones. These unrecognized motivations are not bad or wicked or sinful, they are merely shortsighted and erroneous and of limited logic, as the inner child always is.
These motivations do not go to the essence of the thing, they bypass the real issue and are therefore ineffectual. This paralyzes success, which in turn, causes frustration. The frustration causes frenzied compulsion, which manifests as impatience, so easily confused with striving and ambition. That is what blocks success, not the physical impediment.
QA162 QUESTION: I have a younger brother who is mentally and physically retarded. I’ve started to really wonder about the purpose of his existence. He is a very loving, happy little kid, but I wonder what his purpose is and what he means in my life?
ANSWER: The only way such a purpose can be explained is with a more overall view of the spiritual evolution. It cannot be explained if you take one lifetime out of context, out of its continuum, in other words, when you intuitively sense the karmic causes and effects, the karmic connections from previous existences.
Now, of course, I could tell you some of these things, broadly speaking, and I will do so, not for the sole purpose of giving you information – for such information is valueless if it is a cold, intellectually accepted fact – but it can become a touchstone to opening your own intuition, and to feeling into these inner connections of the inner world and the inner reality.
I will only speak about this in general. Then you can make the specific connections, as it applies to you and your brother.
Generally speaking, when such a life exists, it is a result of a continuous – lifetime after lifetime – not using of one’s faculties. If one is too lazy and too fearful to use the God-given brain – the inner one and the outer one, the intuition and the intellect – if one wants not to ever expose oneself, risk anything by one’s own opinions, if one chooses again and again the line of least resistance, and thereby damages the self as well as others, and does not fulfill oneself, if this goes on and on and on in one lifetime after another, each lifetime the faculties are reduced more and more.
It is the same process as when you do not use a muscle. Eventually it atrophies. Any faculty must be used not only to develop it, but in order to make it capable of functioning. Whether it is the physical body, whether it is the intellect, whether it is one’s capacities to feel – all this must be cultivated. For life is movement and where there is no movement, the stagnation petrifies. Such a petrification on the mental level may then take place – appear in a lifetime – as such a mental retardation. This would be the general explanation.
The personal connections between brothers, for example, are very often that previous connections existed and they are manifold. With your personal deep intuition, as a result of a very inward directed path toward yourself, you might get more specific intuitive flashes of this. But to be given it by others would not make much sense to you. But this might set something off in motion for you.
QUESTION: What possible development is there to a person on that level? Emotionally, he seems wide awake and happy.
ANSWER: The deep spiritual self, of course, is always awake and always aware. When such a person terminates this incarnation, his spirit, his total being, would recognize the effect and would then, perhaps, make up his mind, as it were – would use his faculties to the best of his ability, strengthen his own willpower – that he will put in movement again what he had allowed himself to atrophy.
You see, it is very often the case – I would say in most cases, in certain stages of development – that one does not see, or does not wish to see until and unless, one’s laziness or one’s stubbornness or one’s blindness or one’s misconceptions or one’s destructiveness has taken such a strong form that one can no longer get away with it. Then the entity learns.
Sometimes, and especially after certain hurdles have been overcome, entities do learn, because they’re already strengthened. When they do not have to come to the worst result of their own destructiveness and negativity and ignorance, they activate their own superior forces before it gets that far.
But until a certain level is reached, unfortunately man is not willing to do so. He lets things slide. He hopes, if it could be put into words, it is not necessary. He lives into the day. He does not think about “What is the meaning of my life? What can I accomplish? Those things that make me dissatisfied with my life, do they have to exist? Is there something I can do about it?”
Unfortunately, most people do not do this. They take it for granted. They live at one-tenth or one-hundredth of their possibilities, except when their negativities lead them to despair. Then, this positive, constructive attitude is often taken – not before.
So even if it happens after the lifetime is finished, this is very often the case. Now, you also must understand that such a thing is not a punishment. It is not handed down to him. It is simply a result of what he allowed to happen.
It is just like when a person consistently neglects his body and enters into physical habits that are destructive for him. The result will be various sicknesses, which are not punishments handed down, but they are an effect.
It is up to man to use the effects, beneficially and constructively, or negatively by becoming more withdrawn and more resistant and more angry. This is the choice a person has – not perhaps in such a state, but afterwards he will have it again.