At the core of all the celebrating we do during the holiday season there is a desire for peace on earth. The interesting thing is, for the thousands of years that we've been praying and hoping for peace as we've been celebrating this end of the year holiday, it's never happened, and during this particular holiday season, global events indicate we're far from it. So what gives?
Well, for us to truly create peace on earth, we need some important information we've been missing but is very crucial: The most important and profound relationship we can possibly ever have is the one we have with ourselves, where honor, acceptance, respect, love and compassion govern that relationship.
But wait. There's another crucial bit of knowledge that's been missing as well: We are divine beings of consciousness having a human experience and for this reason, the profound relationship with ourselves I'm talking about is actually the one we have with the divine, since that's who we really are. In other words, loving God means loving ourselves. This means the body is not who we are. Who we are exists deep within us, called a soul, the divine part of us.
The reason this information has never been known is because when we chose to lower our vibration down from the ethereal spiritual dimension (where we came from) to a dense physical body, we collectively agreed to do so without any memory of who we are or where we came from because one of the things we wanted to do was to have the experience of remembering who we are while in a finite body. So, as we began our existence here on the planet, the soul within us was carrying a desire to remember who it is.
As it turns out, we have evolved from those early days when we didn't have a clue about our divine identity, to today being on the verge of becoming fully conscious of this truth, and for peace to finally occur, we have to learn what it really means to love. Since we're divine beings, this means we need to learn how to love ourselves in the truest sense. So, the recipe for peace on earth is for us to become fully conscious of our true divine identity and in the process, master Self-love. Hence, Self-love is the new frontier. To understand how we evolved to this point, let's take a look at the evolution of our consciousness.
Merriam-Webster defines consciousness as “the quality or state of being aware…” There is a collective consciousness that we're all a part of, and we each have our own personal consciousness, and both have been expanding during the historical process of remembering who we are. Because the level of awareness of our true nature as divine beings within our personal consciousness was non-existent in those early days of civilization, our collective consciousness was extremely dense. We were unaware, or out of touch with the world that existed around us. Perhaps you've had the experience of suddenly becoming aware of something that existed all the time but you never knew it was there. Back then we couldn't see much of the beauty that surrounded us in nature because our focus was entirely on survival. This means we couldn't see our own beauty either.
In order to have the experience of remembering who we are while in a physical body, we set this 3D world up to appear dual, which gave us a reference point to define ourselves based on what we saw and experienced with our five physical senses-light and dark, up and down, cold and hot, for example, each giving us perspective, allowing for us to gain understanding and to adapt. If you burn your hand, you learn to keep it away from fire.
THE DICTATORSHIP OF THE MIND
Another aspect of duality is light and dark, which includes not just the light that comes from the sun or the absence of it, but also emotions of love and hate. Both were a part of our divine nature but since we had no memory of this nature, we didn't understand why we had dark emotions-the ones that we didn't like.
Within the world of duality we began defining ourselves based on our interactions with the outer world. In other words, we looked to the outer world to give us a sense of who we are, or an identity. Because we didn't understand anything about the outer world, fear played a major motivational role for survival. The need for acceptance and approval was high on our list of reasons to make a choice to take any kind of action or not.
As we multiplied, we also learned how to manipulate others in an attempt to understand who we are. Since we didn't know, we thought maybe someone else knew, so we began manipulating others hoping to find out what they weren't telling us. This was actually our way of attempting to gain acceptance and approval. We discovered that it felt good when we manipulated others. It gave us a boost of energy. This was the beginning of humans feeding on each other for energetic support. We began relying on others to feel better about ourselves.
The manipulation worked both ways. We allowed others to feed on us. However, having others take energy from us didn't always feel good and at times we got in touch with emotions within us that we feared. Our initial response was to push these emotions away, hoping to eliminate them, but it didn't work because they are a natural part of the light/dark duality of our world.
Our fear of our own emotions intensified our desire to know who we are and this eventually caused the birth of religion, which initially considered just about everything in nature to be a god and because of fear of the unknown, began encouraging all of us to do whatever was necessary to please these gods, hoping not to be harmed by forces that we didn't understand.
Religion also began defining our light and dark nature as “good” and “bad” and attempted to control anything considered bad by setting up rules based on defining “right” from “wrong.” We were told it was wrong to entertain our dark emotions. Since we had already been pushing our dark emotions away, allowing religion to be in a position of authority over us was our way of justifying our actions. Thus, religion was actually just a reflection of us, which also means the perception of God religion taught us was actually just a reflection of us.
Religion's emphasis on denial of our dark side only caused it to get bigger. This is because beliefs are what shapes our reality. Energy is completely neutral, that is, it doesn't have any agenda of its own. However, when a being of divine consciousness (which is what we are) adds a belief to energy, it begins to shape itself to look exactly like whatever our belief is saying. This is the power we hold as divine beings. We shape energy into tangible reality based on our beliefs. We do this all the time whether aware of it or not.
Another thing about energy is that it needs to flow. When we fear it and thus suppress it, as religion from the beginning encouraged us to do with our dark side, it has the opposite desired effect. As the saying goes, “that which you resist persists,” but in actuality, it not only persists, it grows bigger. This is why our suppression of our dark emotions eventually turned into a monster that we defined as a devil that is out to destroy us and claim our souls forever. That was when we determined evil must be defeated at all costs, which inspired soldiers to challenge the devil (the enemy) on the battle field and in the name of defeating this evil, even die if necessary. This was the forerunner to today's need to set goals and with a strong sense of purpose, defeat the competition at all costs. Both are products of the mind.
We chose to dwell in our mind because there we didn't have to experience our dark emotions, and it was there that we made up all these stories of the devil, and then convinced ourselves it was the truth. In other words, we gave the mind the ability to control our heart. Thoughts took dominion over feelings. This was the beginning of a dictatorship of the mind, which has continued to rule humanity to this day.
Since there exists within us both light and dark emotions, when we suppressed the dark ones out of fear, what we were actually doing was fragmenting ourselves. Within our mind we built up walls around our heart to keep the darkness out. We played some amazing tricks with ourselves.
Imagine being in a house of several rooms with someone who judges you, hates you, and is jealous of you. Because we can't stand this person, we decide to lock them into one of the rooms and completely forget about them. Well, that's what we did with all these emotions we were carrying inside us and by locking them up and then denying they ever existed, we actually hid that part of ourselves from ourselves.
As we continue to push off into separate rooms aspects of ourselves we can't stand, these emotions begin to build. Each time they attempt to get out of the prison we put them in (whenever they're triggered), we scheme to find more successful ways to get rid of them. Meanwhile, we can't help feel the effects of what we are doing. Guilt, shame, and even depression can set in and since we don't want these emotions either, we push them off to a back room within us as well.
Something else we haven't grasped to this day is that whatever frightens and triggers us emotionally in our outer world is simply reflecting to us what we have buried within us, that which we are in denial of. We created these emotions, which causes them to be energetically tied to us. Pushing them away does nothing to remove them.
One of the fastest ways to find out what kind of buried beliefs and emotions we have deep inside is to lose whatever has kept us in our comfort zones. Perhaps the loss of our home or a relationship that meant the world to us might bring them up. When enough factors are at play, eventually they all surface-bitterness, anger, resentment, hate, or whatever, and usually God is the first one we blame. As long as we have a belief that says we are separate from our true unconditional loving divine nature, it is inescapable that we will also harbor a belief that we are not responsible for our dark side emotions.
What I'm describing is what all of us learned how to do way back in the beginning, all because religion, through the mind, gave us a reason to suppress the dark emotions we already feared, and by claiming God hated these parts of ourselves too, this encouraged us to not take any responsibility for them. Instead, we began blaming something or someone outside us for such emotions when we got triggered. In time, all of us became so fragmented from ourselves that any one of us became capable of carrying out the most horrific actions imaginable. A close look at history will show you how this dynamic of suppression and denial of ourselves has been the force behind nearly every action we've ever taken.
In terms of our evolutionary process of remembering who we really are, depending on the particular predicament we found ourselves in at any given point in our evolution, we all collectively agreed on a soul level to create whatever beliefs were necessary to allow energy to begin bringing forth into our reality new levels of consciousness or awareness. It made for one hell of an adventure, the intent of which was the expansion of our hearts, because on a soul level we always knew that one day, when we had expanded enough, we'd at long last be in a position to truly grasp that we are indeed the creators.
CONSCIOUSNESS BEGINS TO EXPAND
Because in the beginning we were so unaware of anything about who we really are, suppressing our dark side as we worshiped nature was all we could do. Since then we've been having the tremendous experience of getting ourselves into challenging situations that provided motivation to ask deep within for a way out (which again, based on our beliefs caused energy to manifest accordingly). With each step along the way, our collective consciousness became a little less dense, allowing for a bit more awareness of our true divine nature. At one point when our awareness was enough, our collective consciousness allowed for Abraham to appear with his emphasis on there being only one God, and Judaism was born.
Even though this new focus on one deity was a huge shift in our level of awareness of who we really are, when we found ourselves wandering in the wilderness, there was a lot of dissent among the population. Without knowing our true divine identity while at the same time continuing to suppress our dark emotions, it was easy to feel like a victim and to expect others to take care of us.
Moses played a significant role in contributing to the consciousness when he introduced the Ten Commandments. Among these commandments, the first two defined the divine and what our relationship was to be with the divine:
1.You shall have no other gods before me.
2.You shall not make for yourself any carved image, or any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments. (Exodus 20:1-6)
In these two commandments we were introduced to a God who was both jealous and angry, and had no qualms about extracting punishment if disobeyed. These words very much reflected the relationship we had with ourselves at that time and they reinforced our need to manipulate others. Our choice to push the unwanted emotions away because of fear of our dark side was causing them to get even stronger. We felt a strong need to control this part of us by engaging in battle with it and that's exactly what these commandments encouraged. They contributed to the notion that God wanted us to battle with our enemies (the Old Testament is full of battle stories) so that's what we did, but again, this was just reflecting the battle that was already taking place within us. Our fragmented aspects were literally battling with each other. Part of the battles took place through demands and manipulation. One aspect of ourselves would demand obedience from another aspect and this was then reflected in us controlling others through manipulation and demands. Thus, we continued to allow the mind to rule the heart which was reflected in a victim consciousness.
Still, when combined with the other eight, these commandments ushered in a new era in terms of how we defined our relationship with each other and the divine. This caused an expansion, however slight, of the collective consciousness in our awareness of who we really are.
War between tribes was common amongst the Israelites and their neighbors and this began wearing down their spirit at times. The consciousness began crying out for a savior-someone who had in fact been prophesied to come and slay all their enemies. This cry intensified the belief that it would happen and this eventually caused the appearance of Jesus. We created this collectively on a soul level to satisfy our desire to move to a new level of awareness of who we are.
Jesus definitely ushered in yet another era because he remembered who he was, that he was divine. However, as we know all too well, he wasn't the kind of savior we were hoping for back then. The authorities were threatened by anyone who didn't go along with their mandates, and we know Jesus definitely did not.
In terms of the evolution of our consciousness, the victim consciousness was still very engrained within us at that time and thus, the collective consciousness was not ready yet to expand to the level of awareness of our true identity that Jesus had remembered. Nevertheless, we did want to get away from an angry wrathful God, which is why Jesus introduced to the consciousness a God of love and forgiveness. Of all the Laws and Commandments, he stated the most important was to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind…[and] a second is equally important: Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt. 22:37,39)
When he said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind,” Jesus was actually saying that the most important thing we can do is love ourselves (since was are divine). Doing so would naturally allow us to love our neighbor. However, the words we see written in Matthew represent the consciousness at the time, still needing to keep this God separate, because almost no one was capable of opening up their heart the way Jesus had done. Yes, he did have a profound affect on a small handful of his followers, but once he was gone what he had actually said became distorted when they began passing his words down to the next generations.
THE CONTRIBUTION OF PAUL TO CONSCIOUSNESS
The Apostle Paul contributed greatly to this distortion and yet, his missionary activities were a response to the collective consciousness at the time. Without him, Jesus would have been relegated to obscurity. What no one knows is that when he had his encounter with Jesus on the way to Damascus, he became aware that his bitterness, anger, resentment, and hate was a result of being unaware of who he really was. Jesus revealed to Paul that he too was divine, but this was way too much for him to fathom. Such awareness was a shock to his entire being, which is why it literally blinded him
As the months passed after his experience, Paul attempted to make sense of what had happened to him. Consider what this man was going through emotionally. He had been persecuting and murdering anyone who was sympathetic to the message of Jesus. Such individuals were a thorn in the side of the authorities and as a Roman guard, he was encouraged to get rid of them. This was right up his alley because this gave him a way to express legally the anger and frustration he was already carrying around inside.
Being shown the truth of his own divine nature actually caused him to be even more torn emotionally than he had been before that experience. This is because he carried a tremendous amount of shame and guilt about the crimes he had been committing. It was so intense for him that eventually it became too much to bear. He was so desperate for some relief that he ran to his mind where he intellectualized the experience by choosing to shrug it off as the light playing tricks on his eyes-not the experience itself but the part about him being divine. Then, within the safety of his intellect, he came to the conclusion that Jesus was his Lord and Savior.
This provided a tremendous amount of psychological comfort for him, and this became the basis of his teachings, never mind that he still suffered emotionally. Paul's concept of Jesus' salvation did not include our time spent on the earth. To Paul, Jesus promised “life eternal,” but only after you die, and only if you believe in him through all the suffering. He made this very clear in his written word. For his entire life he carried a great deal of frustration because he was unable to control his fleshly desires-desires he despised because the Law had taught him they were ungodly:
We know that the law is spiritual; but I am carnal, sold under sin. I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree that the law is good. So then it is no longer I that do it, but sin which dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot do it. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I do. Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I that do it, but sin which dwells within me. So I find it to be a law that when I want to do right, evil lies close at hand. For I delight in the law of God, in my inmost self, but I see in my members another law at war with the law of my mind and making me captive to the law of sin which dwells in my members. Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? (Rom. 7:14-25)
For Paul, it was easier to blame his struggles on his body, as if he had no control over it. In fact, because he believed he was a victim of his body, this belief made it so because again, this is precisely how energy works for a divine being of consciousness. Acting on behalf of the collective consciousness, he managed to create a new type of consciousness that set in motion a means of manipulating energy that today is the basis for the predicament we now find ourselves in. By clinging on to a future potential, he kept himself in an illusion, never able to enjoy the moment, always putting joy off until one day when Jesus came back. This is exactly what we continue to do today.
What Paul believed became the central teaching of Christianity, that Jesus died to take responsibility for what we were actually responsible for creating. It was actually a sugar-coating to help us all cope with the trials and tribulations that life brings us, which we believe we have no control over. Actually having a savior to turn to set Christianity apart from Judaism. Both carry the need to battle the dark side but again, in Christian doctrine Jesus is a source of comfort while suffering on earth and provides great hope for heaven in the afterlife.
The problem with this approach is that it does nothing to alleviate external drama. Jesus actually taught that we're the one's responsible for creating the drama in the first place, and then by choice, turning the drama into suffering by claiming victim-hood. He told us (and lived by example) we could have heaven on earth if we were willing to take responsibility for being the creator of our lives, but again, his words were distorted because they were not understood at all.
I have great compassion for Paul because I understand the level of inner turmoil he was going through and why he was so desperate for a savior. Besides the fact that he was still tormented by his fleshly desires despite having made Jesus his savior, Paul had a bad reputation. Jesus' followers knew who he was and had a very hard time trusting him because they feared he was only trying to trick them when he suddenly showed up claiming conversion.
For this reason, and the fact that the authorities were now after him for defecting to the other side, he chose to take his word to the gentiles. He sensed an unfamiliar audience would be more receptive to him. This also gave him a chance to preach his version of Jesus, which brought forth energy to support his new belief, thereby solidifying it as real, and this also provided a distraction so he wouldn't have to deal with what was really going on within him. You could say that through his travels, more than running from the authorities, Paul was running from himself, his heart. In his travels he clung to his intellect, boasting his views and facing persecution without flinching.
Part 2 will further discuss the evolution of consciousness, bringing us up to today and the task that is at hand for all of us with regard to global issues. Watch for it.