The only way you can screw up is by working for the wrong
Indeed, that has been my biggest and most fatal mistake in running this website. That one mistake has been enough to make what is inherently a joy into, at times, a living Hell.
I have allowed my immediate social environment to dominate the message I express and to blacken out my heart.
That’s why I’ve talked so much about social difficulties and feeling like human-interaction is a war. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been trying so damn hard to please the people around me.
I’ve been aware of this for a long time now—around 3 and a half years. But it has persisted. At bottom, it is really the only problem I have in my life. Of course, its effects encompass every aspect of my life, and it’s something I spend the majority of my waking hours struggling with. So it’s a big problem.
The problem is that I have “worked for” people who I never should have bothered with to begin with. By “worked for” I mean written for them, talked to them, tried to impress them—whatever. As far as this problem goes there’s no difference between my web-audience and my in-person social environment—quite literally, to an extent.
I know this happens to a lot of us. When we’re little kids in public school, the way to “thrive” (more like be miserable no matter what you do) is to be pleasant enough that the teachers don’t punish us and the other kids don’t torture us. That’s the ideal—pleasant. Don’t ask the wrong questions, don’t go ahead of everybody else, and definitely do not do things differently from everyone else. I got yelled at for all of those things.
If I was treated that way now, I would tell those people to piss off, and I would just remove myself from their presence. But when you’re a young child in school, that isn’t much of an option. You certainly have the ability to stop showing up to class, but primary education is compulsory, so you and your family will get in lots of trouble if you do that for too long. And if your parents aren’t on board with getting you some other form of education (like home-schooling), then your butt has to stay right there in that silly classroom (unless you want your family to go to jail). Of course, that’s assuming that your parents are capable of giving you a love-based education anyway—they might just screw you up even more than the teachers would.
When I was 6 years old, I actually said these words to other children: You know, if you just sit still and be quiet, the adults won’t yell at you. I wasn’t even in a school when I said that—I was in a house, where you don’t lose points for being too loud in class. And those other kids were just playing—you know, doing something that is perfectly natural. Of course, any adults that heard me say that just clapped for me. What a good little lamb I was.
I don’t want to be a good little lamb anymore.
It’s Normal to be Sick
What happens to us is that we’re overwhelmed by collective consciousness. Especially when we’re children, we can’t help but be overwhelmed by the people who are around us on a regular basis. That was a sad reality I became aware of while living in my car. I may have physically left people behind, but their voices hardly left my head.
The effect of the people around you depends on who those people are. Obviously that isn’t the same for all of us. But when you remain entrenched in any one social environment for very long- perhaps your whole life thus far- it’s easy to forget that other kinds of people actually exist.
As a result, you get used to relating to other people in a certain way. For me that meant trying not to displease anyone too much and virtually never sharing my true thoughts and feelings, since people probably either wouldn’t understand them or wouldn’t like them.
I always saw my website as the one place where I can get away from all that bullshit. Not so long ago, however, I realized that wasn’t the case at all. Maybe I talk about things on here that I rarely talk about with people in-person, but that doesn’t mean that my writing isn’t as tainted by my social environment as any of my other interactions with people.
My writing is self-righteous, because I’m trying to protect myself from those people. My writing exudes a lack of self-certainty, because I’m scared of those people disagreeing with and yelling at me. My writing takes a “holier-than-thou” attitude because I’m writing for people who are too different from me and who I know will never listen to me, but I’m trying hard to get them to. My writing exudes anger because I’m bitter that I’ve been in this stupid situation for so long, writing for people who don’t actually give a damn about what I’m saying at all.
The irony is that all these defense mechanisms are what draw the energy-vampires to me in the first place, and is precisely what keeps them coming back. Whether they realize it or not, these people get off on keeping me disempowered. They want to see me alter myself in response to them, because that means they have control over something.
Why they need control over something—well, those are their own f’d up reasons. One of those reasons is definitely that they have serious health issues, because we all do. And that is why I have allowed myself to be so disempowered for so long and to focus so ardently on not-displeasing people: because my brain is messed up, too.
That sucks, but that is the world we have created. It’s a positive feedback loop of both physical and social toxins, both of which together contaminate consciousness. One sick guy screws over another sick guy, and they both continue to get sicker together. The problem is that they aren’t even aware that they’re sick, and it is the sickness itself that causes them to act like assholes and idiots in the first place. As long as it goes unchecked, that sickness perpetuates itself indefinitely. The reason for this is that the sickness is normal. It has become normal to be physically sick, socially disempowered, and intellectually and spiritually degraded. We feed each other fucked up food and fucked up ideas. Because we fuck each other up on all fronts (physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, social, financial), most of the few people who are willing to admit to this reality are reluctant to do anything about it. So they stay in the circle of shared misery, even though they know they don’t want to.
Ultimately the problem is that what is normal is not healthy, and what is healthy is not normal. Yet, what is normal will do its darndest to tell you that it is healthy. Of course, the more it tells you it’s healthy, the less healthy is probably actually is.
The Lakota shaman Wallace Black Elk was forcibly taken to a mental hospital (he called it the “funny farm”). Black Elk was perfectly sane, but because he lived in a world where being white, Christian, formally-educated, civilized, a bread-winner, and basically just as confused and as much of an asshole as everyone else, all people had to do is complain about him and he could be marked as mentally ill. Yet Black Elk was healthier, happier, and smarter than the rest of them, and he managed to get out because he kept his heart open and maintained his connection to spirit (literally—spirits opened the door for him).
On the other hand, Black Elk could have listened to the doctors’ assertions that he was insane, and decided, Gee, I’m so different from everybody else—maybe I really am sick. But of course he wasn’t sick. He was the healthy one. It’s just that he lived in a world where being sick was (and still is) normal; consequently, what is healthy appears to be evil and insane.
In the end Black Elk shoved it back in their faces by having them at a ceremony, where he called forth spirits who physically touched the doctors, priests, and other civilized people there: it was an experience they couldn't deny. Good for him.
Mistakes: Early, Obvious, and Subtle
In high school, after taking math classes for 10 years, I realized that whenever my answer to a math problem was incorrect I almost always made the mistake in the early steps of solving the problem. It makes logical sense that this would be the case: just one misstep early on makes all of the following steps flawed and futile.
Likewise, in hindsight it’s obvious that many, if not almost all of the human relationships I’ve had in my life (in general; not just romantic ones) were screwed from the start. We were doomed at “Hello.” I was doomed to either fight for my life trying not to displease that person or to be generally disenchanted by them—or, in many cases, both.
Update, 8/16/2017: I've removed most of this section. It was a tad edgy.
Finally Blooming: Realizing Who We Really Are
It will take more than subject matter alone to get rid of the weeds and find the flowers. I will have to be fully authentic, 100%, through and through. I will have to strengthen the connection between my heart and my brain and write in the spirit of who I really am, rather than that of who I’m trying to please (or not-displease).
I will have to write to the people who deserve to be written to. We deserve to respect each other and help each other to grow and treat each other like actual human beings. You deserve to have some help in connecting to your highest truth, whoever you are. I probably haven’t met you yet. Maybe I have; or, maybe you have been reading this website for a while. If that is the case, then I regret that I have treated you like I’m afraid of you and/or like I’m an asshole, because that is the modus operandi I have gotten so used to.
This shift may be difficult to make. When you have known only one thing for your whole life, the premise of letting it go sounds equivalent to death. But the real death lies in holding on to something that isn’t working—especially if that thing never worked. Maybe it’s comfortable because it’s familiar, but it’s not fulfilling, and it never will be. It’s not on the path of growth, and it’s not on the path with a heart, either.
I’m not actually an asshole. Maybe you have read the words of this article in painful amazement or familiarity, and can relate to much of what I am saying. I know that people who are dedicated to living consciously can sometimes (or often) find themselves isolated. You aren’t an asshole either. You’re not dumb or insane or evil. You already know that, but some of the people in your life may have previously told you otherwise—and, at times, you probably believed it. Look at the times in your life that you were most distressed, and you will see that you believed it.
So if you feel disempowered and held back, it isn’t all your fault. You didn’t single-handedly create this toxic, fear-based world we have found ourselves in. It’s perfectly valid to blame others for the shit you find yourself standing in.
But at the same time, you maintain full and complete responsibility for removing yourself from the shit and standing among the flowers instead. Those people aren’t going to suddenly come out of their hypnosis and apologize to you and reverse all the damage they’ve done and give you the lost hours of your life back. In your own life, you will always have to lead the change. No one else can.
It will be difficult. It will feel like your life is dying. You’ll even be afraid of the light—the beautiful, heart-centered light that lies within you and is the essence of who you really are. I know because sometimes I’m afraid of that light, too. When you’re shrouded in darkness, you’re convinced that making contact with the light will kill you. Indeed, it will. But it will only kill the parts of you that are not actually you. It will only remove the things in your life that are holding you back. Nothing that truly matters can be lost; thus, you have nothing to lose.
The Grand Projection
I only experience struggle when I either fear for my survival or am concerned about what other people think. Most of the time, I only fear for my survival when I’m concerned that other people think I’m doing something stupid and will probably get myself killed, while I myself am not actually afraid for my own well-being.
The primary struggle in this physical existence is ultimately a social one. Higher consciousness demands individuality, and individuality means being different from the collective. At the same time, higher consciousness also demands unity, and unity means both giving to and receiving from the collective. To thrive in this world you have to be connected to your highest self, and simultaneously you have to be grounded. If there was no need for grounded-ness, there would be no need to be here in the first place.
Likewise, we are all on the same side, but it often looks like we aren't. It's fine and well to want to love and serve everyone, but if some people don't want that from you and/or they hinder your ability to do that, then you have to let them go.
The physical world is all just a projection. But it’s not a random projection—it is a projection of your own consciousness. This means that everything in it, including the people in it, is a reflection of what you believe. In turn, this means that people behave as you expect them to. So, on the one hand, you are 100% responsible for everything you experience—including the behavior of others. On the other hand, if you cannot change your expectations about how certain people are going to behave, then it makes sense to not engage with those people anymore. Likewise, if you believe that there are only a few people on the planet who you can enjoy authentic, empowering, heart-centered connections with, then you will have to be your best in order to find those people.
You don’t have to argue with yourself for the way you’ve created the projection. You’ve done so for a reason—to grow. You want to experience the journey of growing from lack of awareness to awareness to change. If that experiential journey had no value to you, then you could simply leave now, and pass on to another realm. But that journey does have value to you, and that’s why you keep choosing to stay here every day. You love the journey—even when it’s hard. If you didn’t, you would not stay.
The Heart-Brain Connection
Living from your heart is the easiest thing in the world. It’s also the hardest thing in the world. Remove the obstacles from the heart, and it will open naturally. At the same time, if you open your heart, all obstacles will be removed: they will be either eliminated entirely or no longer regarded as obstacles, and instead as playthings and aids to growth.
If you open your heart, and use your mind to understand that everything you want is already here, a heart-brain connection will form, and you will access your true power. Everything else will flow from there.
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