Reviewer’s Note: This is a book and seminar about disentangling yourself from old creations and rising back into awareness through these 30 consciousness skills and processes.
Excerpted from Part II – Attention & Will
Under the guise of socializing the individual, schools and governments discourage willful behavior. Willfulness is equated with stubbornness or obstinacy.
So from disuse, the individual’s will falls into a stupor and is kept sedated by stressful indoctrination. Awakening is discouraged by regulations that threaten painful consequences for mistakes. Personal responsibility is associated with blame and replaced by abstract ideas about right, which serve as justification for any action, no matter how selfish, immoral or cruel.
Methods of indoctrination have been developed into highly effective technologies over the last ten millenniums. The individual has become a puppet of ill-conceived lessons of long-dead pedagogues. As a result, the individual’s will is in a very deep slumber. Accompanying this decline in teh omnipotence of the will is an increasing concern with personal needs and gratifications. Awareness becomes spirits, minds and/or bodies.
Low will power creates an addiction to directions, which is fed by truth-saying gurus, perpetuated by sign painters and validated by courts. Personal responsibility is deposed without fuss by uniform codes of law. Freedom is replaced by governmentally managed choices (e.g., You are free to pay your taxes by check or cash).
For some, just encountering the idea of living deliberately begins to reawaken the will. Others are going to sleep through to the grave.
The ones who wake up look around and are amazed at the sleepwalker existence from which they have just emerged. The realization “I decide” frees them from their addiction to answers. Some awaken so ashamed of their irresponsible behaviors that they become rebellious against all authority. Some even attack the source of their awakening.
A harmonic of this rebellious awakening is seen during late adolescence when inexperienced youths test their power of will over the smallest matters. Providing they escape complete indoctrination, responsibility matures and catches up with the will. They realize: the proper use of will power is not conquest and subjugation, but the disciplined control of one’s own attention.
“Freedom is a measure of the number of decisions a person makes. As long as there is more pleasure than pain connected with making decisions, a person desires more freedom and less indoctrination. When it is reversed, and there is more pain than pleasure connected with making decisions, a person desires less freedom and welcomes indoctrination.” – Harry Palmer
Exercise 2: Awakening the Will
The will awakens slowly from sleep. At first it feels overwhelmed by the turbulence of thoughts that buffet it. Its initial attitude is: “Just tell me what you want and I’ll do it.”
Objective: To strengthen the will by describing objects.
Expected Results: Insights, calming, increased awareness.
Instructions: Take a walk, notice something, and decide how you would describe it. Continue, noticing different objects.