I loved our laughter when we all related to: "If you clear something, if you divorce something, you still have the choice of reclaiming it, or remarrying it, or at least going on a little date with your ex to see how it feels."
It's like seeing a "Wet Paint" sign and just having to check it out--we've all got sticky fingers.
So I go back to an old pattern of behavior--and I might really have to to do some work to get there, and I discover (again), "Yes, this still sucks."
Now why did I do that? Am I that nuts? Am I that self-destructive?
I don't think so.
What has happened here is that we have fallen asleep again. We have begun to identify with that little separate ego-self, and when that happens all the old self-centered and addictive mind-recordings start to kick in. The phrase that is often used in addiction recovery is "euphoric recall." That's a fancy way of saying that all we think about is the rewards or the good things from that old pattern of behavior(and even that thinking is very distorted). So we find ourselves almost hypnotized by the siren song of those old attitudes, behaviors and beliefs, and before we know it we are ensnared in the web AGAIN!
We are not bad, or evil or crazy or stupid, we just forgot. We became unaware; we fell asleep.
I could not help be reminded of Paul's desperate cry in Romans 7:15 "I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do."
I believe Paul struggled his whole life to try and make a distinction between the ego(self) and the soul(spiritual self). He was finally able to put it into words, but nobody really got it. Religion still translated it with a sense of separation. ("I live now, not I, but Christ liveth in me"). There was just no common language for that distinction of ego and soul, so the "self" was always portrayed in conflict, or was viewed as being weak at best, evil at worst, and somehow separate from God.
We have inherited the legacy of this language gap and misunderstanding, and what we are doing right now is creating a new language and a new understanding. But as we have found, it is so easy to fall back into that old "separateness" style of thinking and all the guilt, fear, shame, anger, frustration, and attempts to control that goes with it.
I would encourage all of us to go back to the prayers on those pages 46-51. They are very, very powerful, and by praying them over and over we reinforce the energy of our willingness and intention, and our AWARENESS.
This is a great prayer to use when you find yourself falling back into an old behaviors or thought patterns that you realize no longer serve you. Memories can seem to be very fleeting, but those thoughts that have not yet been healed can carry quite a bit of emotional baggage. So when you discover you have been caught up in an old way of thinking:
“I am Word through this memory, and I am Word through any manifestations and any belief systems that were created through this memory that are no longer in alignment with my highest good. I am now choosing to release any patterns of failure or ridicule or belief in comfort to be attained through ridicule or failure that may have been created through this situation and through this time. I am Word through this memory and all that it has begotten me. Word I am Word through this intention. Word I am Word.”
What we have done here is to "let go of the mold." We become aware and we consciously and intentionally release this pattern of thought/behavior that no longer serves us.
The "mold" still exists. It's like getting rid of a headache--you know you don't have it anymore, but it's still "hanging around."
Then we get to the next level of commitment and choice. I'm reminded of a computer scenario wherein you want to delete something, and you press all the proper buttons, and the prompt comes up "Do you want to delete...?" and you respond in the affirmative, and the prompt now comes up, "Are you sure you want to delete...?"
Yes, I want to get rid of this pattern. Are you sure you want to get rid of this? It's like throwing away your "blankie." Perhaps it has served you well over all these years, but now it is stinky, moldy, and just gets in the way. (simply put, even if we want to, letting go of old stuff that has been around for some time requires work and practice.)
Here is the prayer for breaking the mold:
“I am now making the choice to have this cleared once and for all and I intend now to release any unconscious behavior that would have me reclaim this pattern that I have stated I am now free of. Word I am Word through this intention. Word I am Word.”
OK. I let go of the mold; I broke the mold; I sent it to the city dump. Why would "possess" me to recreate it?
The behavior might have gotten dumped, but the thinking and thought patterns behind it might still be lurking in the shadows.
We concentrate on changing patterns of behavior, but even more important are the patterns of thought that create the pattern of behavior.
Just a for instance: one of my "demons" is "not-enoughness" thinking, and then that triggers all sorts of victim consciousness, and then that in turn produces a whole parade of negative thoughts which then begin to express themselves with anger, fear, irritability, isolation, self-pity. After that I am wide open to all my old stuff---my blankie, or my collection of blankies now seem quite attractive and perhaps even necessary again.
Please keep in mind what I am paraphrasing from NTI: "When you awaken (become Aware again) after being asleep/unaware it is NOT time to beat yourself up or even figure out why you fell asleep. It is time to be grateful that you are awake.
Then we go to praying the prayer again, and again...
As my buddy Ram Dass says, "Once you are awake, you can never really go to sleep again. You can doze, but we never really go backwards."
Nature abhors a vacuum, and there is a similar metaphysical principle. When I rid myself of a pattern that no longer serves me, I want to put a new pattern in its place.
Jesus alludes to this in a very graphic way in Luke 11: 24 “When a demon is cast out of a man, it goes to the deserts, searching there for rest; but finding none, it returns to the person it left, and finds that its former home is all swept and clean. Then it goes and gets seven other demons more evil than itself, and they all enter the man. And so the poor fellow is seven times worse off than he was before.”
Please don't get scared off by the "demon" talk. This is not about demons or devils or anything outside of us. These are patterns that no longer serve us, and need to be replaced.
Here is the "Prayer of Replacement":
“I am now in dominion over my thinking. I am now realizing myself fully as the one in control of my thinking. I am now choosing to think only those thoughts that will bring me benefit and anchor in this new way of thinking fully into my consciousness. I am Word through this intention. Word I am Word.”
“I am now choosing to think only those thoughts which will bring me peace and will align me to a higher consciousness. I am doing this easily and through my own intention to know myself as Word. Word I am Word through this intention. Word I am Word.”
And then as the icing on the Spiritual cake, we are reaching into that sense of fear and separateness from which all of this stuff came, and we are consciously releasing that as well:
“I am now choosing to release the pattern of worry that has created these problems and I do this fully on all levels: past, present, future, and align myself to the new thought that I have put forth. I am Word through this intention. Word I am Word.”
For each and every one of these prayers and intentions a continuing basic requirement is practice. These are not one shot deals. It took us time, effort, energy, and repetition to acquire this stuff and so it is going to take some practice to let it go and break the mold.
It's the old "How do you get to Carnegie Hall? practice, practice, practice.
Notice both the understanding and the resistance!
I'm not sure how or why but many of us have acquired the mistaken notion that spiritual matters happen in all at once. Maybe it was too much Disney, "Bippity, bobitty, boo" growing up.
It would be ridiculous to think, "Well, I ate dinner yesterday, why do I need to do it again today?" Yet in matters of Spirit, I find myself thinking: "Well, I prayed about that yesterday. Why hasn't it changed?" Or "I set my intention yesterday to be kind and loving towards myself, how come it's not working today?"
Yeah, I know that's why they call it Spiritual Practice!
Thank you all for joining in this journey. We are truly blessed.
May all beings be at Peace;
May all beings be free of suffering.