72 QUESTION: I would like to go back to the question that was asked about fear and the mismanagement of instinct in that regard. Instinct is natural to us in the normally functioning human being. Would you comment on the mismanagement of instinct in that regard?
ANSWER: It is connected with the question of trust in the self we discussed before. If you thwart your instincts, due to the deviations under discussion, you do not trust them. So often you have found that your fears were unjustified. As a consequence, you cease heeding them when perhaps there is good reason to do so.
Then you are all the more engulfed in fear, never knowing when to trust your intuition or instinct and when not to. As you cease being fear-ridden for unrealistic reasons, when fear does come up you will question it intelligently, instead of burying it.
QA114 QUESTION: You talked about being able to trust the flux of time, the benign quality of the movement and growth of time. Sometimes the quality doesn’t seem benign to me, like when you see somebody sick and suffer.
ANSWER: Well, when I say trust, I mean that the universal laws and the cosmic and divine laws and forces work – and must work – ultimately for the good, for life. Now, suffering and death is a manifestation. It exists on a certain level, but it does not mean that in the ultimate sense it exists.
Of course, I know when I say trust in that, that you are often not yet able to trust it, because you do not trust yourself. And you cannot trust and you cannot even see the benign quality of the universal forces if you do not trust yourself.
For if you have such distrust that you can only see what is manifest and do not see what is behind what is manifested, then the time comes when you have to face the fact that you do not trust yourself. And in this work, when you determine exactly why you do not trust yourself, what it is in you that makes you distrust yourself, then you will have made a step further.
You cannot trust in the universal forces by any theory or teaching I could possibly give you. Your world is full of the greatest truth teachings imaginable. But they do not help if the psyche is full of obstructions, and this is why the weight of my teachings and my guidance is always on facing the truth in the self, and thereby getting to know yourself, thereby understanding yourself to a fuller degree.
In that sense, you grow up from psychological infanthood and dependency, from self-pity, blame, self-justification and guilt, and stand on your own feet so that you feel you are worthy of your own trust. And only when that happens will you need no further explanation of why there is every reason in the world to trust life.
So your task would have to be to find out exactly why you do not trust yourself – you as an individual – not only the traits and the trends you do not like about yourself, but what is even more important, your dependency, your subtle, inner ways of making childish demands to the world, to life.
161 QUESTION: I found out that it is almost impossible for me to trust completely – on any level. The deeper I go, the deeper I find this. Sometimes it is not apparent at all. This must connect, of course, with not wanting to let go of the ego. What I would like to know is, if certain areas are cleared of negativity, is it then automatic that you trust completely, without effort?
ANSWER: Yes, it is automatic. It is like a seesaw, or a scale. I discussed this seesaw process several times. Many of my friends on the Path have actually experienced it happen. Let us take self-dislike as an example. It need not and cannot be deliberately abandoned. Whenever this is attempted it fails. To the extent the justified reasons for self-dislike are removed, the self-dislike stops itself. So it is with trust.
You will trust automatically when you find the justified reasons for distrusting yourself. The process is always an automatic reestablishment of balance. The best thing you could do in such a state is strengthen yourself daily by a very specific meditation. Say into yourself, “I want to give up all destructiveness. If I cannot do so yet, I herewith request the real self, the divine substance in me, to help me see where I am stuck and help me out of it. For this is what I want.”
If you feel yourself not wanting it, do not gloss over this all-important, crucial obstruction. Rather take that as the point of departure. Then say into yourself, “I would like to find out exactly why I do not want the good. What blocks me from wanting it?” In whatever area it may be, say “I wish I could want it. What is it? I want to give my very best to this specific phase of where I am stuck.” If you proceed in this way, success must come. It is hopeless only when you look away from the point where you are stuck.
QUESTION: Since yesterday I am aware of a very deep tendency of disliking people, almost inadvertently. It is frightening to me how this separating attitude makes it impossible for me to appreciate people at all. It was suggested to me yesterday in my private session that I should not try to get out of it before exploring its origin and ramifications. Could you comment on this?
ANSWER: Yes. Such dislike of people – including yourself, of course, since this is inextricably bound together – is also a question of distrust. Therefore, in this exploration, I would first advise you to look at the following. You assume many of the things happening to you to be so bad that no redeeming circumstances exist for you. The interpretation you give to those incidents is exaggerated and distorted a hundredfold.
You need to look at everything that hurt and upset you in the past, as far as you can remember – as well as in the present – with a new consideration. You need to take into consideration that another meaning exists than the one you automatically assume. Everything you see has a finality and exclusiveness for you that permits no other possibility but the most devastating one. You need to recognize this attitude in its full significance and desire to change it.
Seeing reality can then be cultivated. Whatever you see in someone or in a situation is for you the whole thing. It never occurs to you that, apart from it being quite different from what you assume, it is at best only part of the whole picture. Ask yourself about anything you assume, “Is this the whole truth? Is this all there is to it, or could there be other aspects that I ignore because I close myself to a wider reality?”
This is one area where you can broaden your vision and expand your horizon. For you still experience like an infant who only sees the moment, and that is all. Second, I would advise you to ask yourself whether you want to like people. What is the answer? Feel into yourself.
QUESTION: My mental processes tell me I need to like people, but I feel resistance. Where do I go from here?
ANSWER: This is your conflict. It is so wonderful when a person is aware of such a conflict, for the very great majority of people have similar conflicts but are not aware of them. Awareness is the necessary prerequisite to find the way out of suffering. It makes it possible for you to look at the side that says No.
Ask yourself why not. Instead of theorizing – no matter how correct these general theories would prove to be – it will be more helpful to come up with the specific answer, as it applies to you. Ask yourself with a fresh, new approach why you do not wish to like people, and do not be afraid to give yourself childish, irrational, illogical answers. Allow anything that comes forth. Then you will know the truth about the No.
It is always the same. Before a person can develop their capacity to love, they must first have the willingness to do so. As long as that is lacking, nothing can be done. The willingness to do so is the crux. It must exist on all levels for love to be whole. If it only exists superficially and not in the depths of their feelings, the manifestations the person then experiences will correspond to it.
You are unaware of your unwillingness to love, and then complain about the results and feel yourself victimized. As long as you waste your energies on complaining and feeling victimized, you are in a vicious circle. The destructive projections and blaming of others consumes the energy you need for loving and wanting love, as well as for looking at the self and finding out what is amiss.
When you ask yourself why you do not wish to love and answer it precisely and honestly, you will know why your capacity to love does not function. And consequently you will understand your loneliness, and no longer believe that a trick of fate is being played on you. So this is a wonderful step here.
I will not tell you why you do not wish to love. The answer must come from yourself. That indeed is possible. All I can say is, misconceptions and destructiveness hang on to you because you hang on to them. Once they are out in the open, it will be relatively easy for you to overcome them.
This lecture [Lecture #161 Unconscious Negativity Endangers Surrender of Ego to Involuntary Processes] can become a milestone indeed for some of you, my friends. It can represent the culminating point you have needed. I can see that something is happening within some of you where a basic destructiveness will be abandoned through your squarely facing it. Then the divine can be activated.
This transition is the most significant thing that can happen in an individual’s life. Nothing – absolutely nothing – can equal this process. Those who lack the courage to look at themselves in truth, to abandon self-illusions and delusions, cannot come to such a transition. You cannot abandon a negativity you ignore you have. You cannot give up a destructiveness you deny exists in you. Truth leads to love, and love without truth is impossible. They are indeed one.
QA254 QUESTION: Although we are deeply connected to the Center here, we also have a strong connection with the Northwest and feel that it might be our task someday to return to our former home in British Columbia. We know this would involve the Pathwork in some way, but we don’t know how. In order to do this, we would need to retain our landed immigrant status, which would allow us to again live and work in Canada at some future point.
Yet, it appears very difficult, if not impossible, to retain this status without returning to Canada for periods of time on a regular basis, probably every year. Is it important enough to keep this legal option open, that we should make every effort needed to do so? Or is our time in British Columbia over, and are we using the connection we still feel as a back door? We would greatly appreciate your help in understanding this situation.
ANSWER: You must realize that I cannot possibly tell you where and when, and even exactly what your task will be. Finding these answers gradually through your own inner growth struggle is precisely part of this task, without which the final result would be meaningless. An aspect of your wholeness lies in an ability to let go, to trust, and to proceed from an inner place from which it is not necessary to have all your exits covered, as it were.
This idea amounts not to practicality and foresight, which should by no means be lacking in the spiritually mature person. It is much rather an anxiety to have all possible back doors open. If and when the time comes to return to this part of the world, you need not worry about the legalities.
For the moment, do not clutter your present with the possibility of a future. This would only result in not being fully here and now. It would fulfill some neurotic elements that need to be overcome. Do not worry, my beloved friends, trust and let yourselves be in the Now.