Visualization Process for Growing into the Unitive State

Pathwork Guide Lecture No. 210 | April 06, 1973

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Greetings and blessings for all of you here, my dearest friends.  This lecture is another step to help you in a very specific way.  The individualized personality in the process of growth and expansion must always evolve toward new states of consciousness and experience.  Each stage deepens in scope and releases new creative substance with which to create desirable life experiences and worlds.  In this way more of the abundance of the universe becomes available to the individual.

You all know that visualization is quite essential to the creating and recreating work you do in meditation.  Unless you can visualize the state you are to grow into, it is hardly possible to reach it.  However, it is extremely difficult to visualize a new state to grow into unless an example of some sort exists.  Therefore a prototype provided by a person who already has attained the desired state is essential for imprinting the proper concept on your mind.  This map, or blueprint, is the first step; it is the idea that later materializes.  Without an idea, materialization is impossible.

Attitudes, ways of being, and patterns of behavior have a particular power to influence us; we might almost say they are contagious.  This applies to both positive and negative attitudes and behavior patterns.  Even feelings and the states they create can be contagious.  It is known that some people’s opinions can influence others enough to make them adopt the same opinions.  This entire process of influence through exemplary figures leads to imitation, emulation, and identification.  All of this can exist on a quite conscious, deliberate level, or on very subtle, subliminal, and involuntary levels, depending on what figures are chosen to identify with, to adopt from, or to emulate as prototypes for a new state to grow into.

The freer the soul and the less encumbered by distortions, misconceptions, negativity, and destructive impulses, the more reliable become its choices.  This applies both to the conscious and unconscious choice of figures we want to identify with, and also to the particular traits we decide to emulate or to discard.  The ability to make such choices well depends on the purity of the state of consciousness already attained by the chooser.  So, as always, the beginning is the hardest.  In this case, one’s own distortions may lead to choosing false heroes, and at the same time make one utterly blind to the really desirable aspects of a possible exemplary figure, because the concepts are lacking.  Only little by little can a person build the proper concepts so as to be able to recognize the desired traits which can then be used as further road maps.

Individual personalities choose their parents and environment on the basis of this principle while journeying from one incarnation to the next.  The proper exemplary figures set off a spark of recognition in the mind of the seekers.  This then creates a vibrant energy field whose creative power molds the soul substance of the seekers who have finally recognized the true examples.  When done in a truthful and creative way, this never means falsely aping or giving up one’s own uniqueness.  Quite the contrary:  the emulated ways of being, traits, and attitudes are adapted to the uniqueness of the seeker who incorporates these universal aspects into his or her own self-expression.  You remain totally true to yourself when you emulate someone in a real and creative way.  Only negative attitudes in the self can lead to negative identification with negative role models and hence to self-betrayal.

All parents are prototypical figures to their children.  Strong rejection of a parent, or of particular traits and attitudes in the parent, is an indication that a deliberate negative identification took place—an aping which the self now blindly battles, because the real problem has not yet been recognized.

To the degree that the parents and the child are healthy and purified souls, the child identifies with their positive aspects.  The child will recognize what traits in the parent, and later in other authority figures, are to be used for its life plan, and what traits are to be rejected.  The child can do this only to the degree that it is receptive through its own power to know the truth.

Negative identification leads to the creation of “images.”  We use the term “images” in the pathwork to define misconceptions and generalizations which form very limited and fixed closed systems.  Conscious and/or unconscious identification which forms an inner image always creates a limited vision that precludes seeing available alternatives.  This false vision excludes so many important factors.  The few that are seen are therefore so out of context that one’s perception of life and hence one’s reaction to it are unrealistic.

Positive identification can never lead to an image.  Instead it leads to visualization, which is a flexible, realistic, wide-open system with many alternative ways from which consciousness and creative action can spread.  It is very important for you to think about this and to really understand what I am saying here.  On the spiritual path you come to a point when you must know that you need positive identification, with a realistic, open, and freeing prototype.  You need to recognize external exemplary models.  If you cannot yet, you need to first build an inner concept, so that you can visualize both inwardly and recognize outwardly exemplary figures.  Later you will become such exemplary figures yourselves, to inspire others on their path when they are ready to see truth and to conceive of themselves according to their indwelling potentials.  A true exemplary figure inspires you to visualize similar traits and attitudes dormant within your deeper self which can then be brought into full expression.

I mentioned before that the blocks and fogs created by illusion and distortion make you blind to true exemplary figures or at least to some of their traits.  They cause you to be blind because your concept of what really exists in these examples is either still absent or so misconceived that your interpretation of what you see may be completely wrong.  Truthful perception of exemplary figures can only exist when you are already relatively free, open, and aware of yourself; then suddenly something will click in you.  A spontaneous, almost automatic, organic desire to develop in the same direction as your example will spring up in you.  You will not imitate something that is foreign to your nature.  Basic universal traits exist and are expressed in different ways by each unique individual; so you do not emulate to make an exact copy of a trait but rather adapt it to your unique individuality.  Somewhere along your path you will have gained sufficient self-awareness to have a subliminal understanding of what is worthy of emulation.  You will be alert to it and use this vision to complete yourself.

As in every area of development, here, too, are certain sequences and alternations according to spiritual law.  Where blocks exist, and exemplary figures are therefore absent or unrecognized, the psyche has to learn how to choose realistic, positive figures as signposts.  You must pay attention to this necessity and conceive an inner vision of what a unified, harmonious, integrated person, who expresses contact and unification with the divine self, is like.  When such a concept exists, inner visualization can begin, which will then make you capable of meeting and recognizing the outer figures who can further help, affect, and inspire you, to fully become your best self.

In this lecture I wish to give you some clear-cut pointers and initial concepts of what to look for, what to be attuned to, and what to be prepared to recognize as your own as yet dormant  potentials.  I will draw a picture of what it is like, inwardly as well as outwardly, to come to the point where the personality truly unites with the inner divine self, with the inexhaustible wealth that is every human being’s inner nucleus:  the center of one’s very being.  This lecture is just an outline that describes certain very basic conditions and expressions which can safely be generalized and applied to all of you who have reached the state where your divine self is being continuously expressed and actualized.   I will try to give you a concept and a vision so that you can begin to see with fresh eyes, and perhaps recognize in others what you had previously been blind to.

When individuals come to the state of deliberately and  consciously choosing to commit themselves to the divine will and reality, then the groundwork has been laid for certain vital changes to occur in their inner and outer lives.  This is a commitment to the all-consciousness indwelling in every creature.  It can be called by any name you choose:  God, universal consciousness, the real self, the inner self—whatever name you give to that which transcends the little ego.  When this whole-hearted commitment is made totally, then certain things begin to happen in one’s life.  Obviously, one reaches this state not by crossing a sharply defined line, but through a gradual process.  Before describing this process, I wish to say that you must not be misled by the fact that you may consciously have made such a commitment, and yet find no great inner or outer change occurring in your life.

Some of you may be very committed to God on a conscious level, but you may not realize at all that there are other levels in you where this is not the case.  You may find it very easy to believe on a merely conscious level that this commitment to God is what you want.  Consciously you may be full of goodwill and really mean it.  But unless you have come to experience the contradictory levels within you where you do not wish that, or where you only wish it on your own ego terms which defeats the very act of self-surrender, you will want to balk.  Unless you acknowledge your contrariness, fear, selfwill, and pride, your conscious commitment will always be blocked.  Unless you own up to the contrary ego level hidden behind your goodwill, you may not even understand why certain results are still lacking despite your conscious commitment to truth, to God, to love.  This awareness is extremely important, and the pathwork deals with it in a very intensive way in order to help you avoid one of the most insidious obstructions:  self-deception.

We search for and bring out that negative part of the self which says, “I will not.”  You will learn the courage, humility, and honesty to expose this part—the part that even says, “I want to resist.  I want to be spiteful.  I want to have it all my way, or else!”  Only when the secret crevices of your psychic substance yield up and expose these areas can you begin—often with a lot of struggle—to change this very negative level, this darker part of the personality.  When this part remains hidden, you are split and do not understand why your positive endeavors fail to go further.

Then there comes a point when you have won this particular battle.  At this stage you can wholeheartedly embrace and trust the surrender to divine consciousness.  But again, this does not come in one fell swoop.  At first this surrender must be fought for every time.  You need self-discipline to remind yourself.   Although resistance is gone, the outer self is still conditioned to the old functioning and automatically forges ahead on the top level of the mind.  At this stage you need to acquire a new habit pattern.  It takes time.  Perhaps when you are in real trouble, in a state of crisis, you will remember to let go and let God.  But in ordinary life, in your everyday chores, this does not yet  occur to you.  Perhaps you can do it where you are relatively free, but you still find your old obstinacy, distrust, and forgetfulness where problems persist.  Only little by little do you reach the state where a new habit pattern is instituted, where the act of self-surrender to the all is actualized, where it manifests and where it permeates all your thoughts and perceptions, your decisions and actions, your feelings and reactions.  We shall come back to this.

First let me speak about the relationship between your inner and outer life.  A lot of confusion exists among people about this topic.  There are those who claim only the inner life is important.  They prohibit the inevitable movement from the inner to the outer life because they do not see the limitation and actual falsity of this idea.  If unification and divine process are truly in movement, the inner content must express itself in outer form.  In short, the outer life must mirror the inner life in every possible respect.  But if your consciousness ignores this truth, or even strongly embraces the opposite belief that the outer does not matter, then you prohibit the flow of the whole process.  If this happens, the more radiant energetic matter cannot express itself on the levels of coarser matter and thereby refine it.  You may recall that in one of the more recent lectures I described how creation attempts to fill the void. Every human being helps in this task of refining the coarser matter by bringing inner spiritual reality into outer expression.

The false concept that the outer level does not matter encases the inner spiritual truth and beauty behind a wall, separating it from the material reality.  The individual with this false concept begins to see a dichotomy between the two which are really one.  Many movements and spiritual schools of thought preach asceticism and the denial of the outer life under the guise that this furthers inner spiritual life.  This distortion is a reaction to the equally distorted opposite extreme, which position claims that outer form is more important than inner content, and may even negate that an inner reality or content exists at all.  Instead, it asserts that only outer form matters.  True inner growth must eventually also manifest outwardly, though not necessarily with the speed designated by the outer-oriented person, who in expecting an instant change is making mistakes in judgment.  It is certainly possible to express outer form without it being a direct expression of inner content.  You must therefore be careful in your evaluations.

These two distortions are faulty counter-reactions, each one attempting to eliminate the other by misunderstanding its own.  This phenomenon can occur on all subjects as long as consciousness is entrapped in dualistic illusion.   During different eras and civilizations, and under different cultural conditions, one of these opposite distortions may be adopted until the pendulum swings to the other.  Only a truly connected, self-actualizing and unified person expresses outer form as an inevitable sequence of inner con tent.

When the outer form exists without the inner content, it is a temporary cover that must break down, even though it resembles the glorious perfection of divine reality and its expressions. Again, this is a process that repeats itself in many areas throughout human development.  However, it is an ongoing law that all false covers must crack and crumble.  When outer form exists unconnected with an organic inner content, it must disintegrate.  If it exists on faulty premises based on appearance, on confusing the outer life with the inner, then the outer form must first crumble before it can be rebuilt as an organic expression of the inner movement and content.  Only when the outer form has crashed and the inner chaos been exposed and thoroughly eliminated, can inner beauty build outer beauty, inner harmony build outer harmony, and the inner abundance build outer abundance.  A clear vision of this principle is also necessary for creating a  visualization of your own movement which can then manifest in your outer life as a result of your inner process.

I shall now discuss specific manifestations that take place in a person who is already deeply anchored in the process of actualizing the divine life into his or her ego consciousness.  What are the inner and outer attitudes, manifestations, and expressions of such a person?   All decisions, big or small, are made on the basis of self-surrender, where the little self surrenders to the godself.  It steps aside and allows the inner wisdom to permeate it.  In this process the personality realizes that there is nothing that is unimportant.  Every thought, every opinion, every interpretation, every mode of reacting is given a chance to be permeated by the greater consciousness.

At this stage the resistance to pay attention to everything that occurs is overcome; a new habit has been formed so that the divine process is now self-perpetuating.  It is so much part of the whole person that it operates even on those rare occasions when the personality forgets to establish the contact, when, perhaps, an old raw area might still flare up and push the personality in the wrong direction.  The inner self is sufficiently freed to manifest so that it can send forth warnings, disagreement, advice—and then leave the decision of whether or not to follow such advice to the outer personality.  This is already a state of grace.  Confidence and trust have been established as a result of repeated proof that divine reality brings truth, wisdom, goodness, and joy.  At first, the divine will is not trusted.  It is confused with untrustworthy parental authority, which may often have proclaimed something as good for the child that really proved not to be so.  At the stage in question this confusion no longer exists.  The self is fully aware that divine will is truly in accordance with all that the heart may possibly desire.  This trust grows gradually every time you overcome your resistance and go into the apparent abyss of surrender, giving up narrow selfwill.

This self-perpetuating divine process brings a vital revolutionary change into the entire person.  I can touch upon only a few of its manifestations.  Thoughts of truth will be sent forth into your being, notwithstanding the limited thoughts you still habitually follow.  You will hear an inner voice instructing you with a wisdom and a unifying spirit that your outer self cannot possibly produce.  According to this wisdom, there is never any need to hate, to feel self-rejection or to reject others.  The answers and revelations will show the oneness and unity of all, which will completely eliminate fear, anxiety, friction, and despair.

Surrendering the knowledge of the limited ego to the knowledge of the deeper self, so as to exert all energy, courage, honesty, and self discipline toward making the deeper knowledge self-perpetuating, leads to ultimate fulfillment.  Without this as the essential foundation, no joy, pleasure, or fulfillment can exist for long.  Even while they do exist, the fulfillment becomes unbearable and finally cannot be accepted.  Give up your stake in your negative reaction, in the stubborn opinions of your little mind, in the laziness that forces you to succumb to the old habits of your separated self.  You will thus gain true life.  Wait patiently, but be ready to receive divine wisdom which you can activate if you so desire.  When this state has been instituted, or is in the process of being continually deepened and strengthened, then certain other manifestations begin to appear, inwardly and outwardly.

You will find an immense security.  This is a security you can only gain when you discover the reality of the spiritual world within you and operative around you.  You will then know the deep peace of the meaning of your life and of all life.  You will intuitively know the connections and be permeated by a sense of fulfillment and safety that surpasses all words.  All this will then no longer be a theory or belief that you cling to or deny, but an experiential fact which you can recognize again and again.  There is always a way out of every darkness and therefore never a reason to despair.  You will know that nothing happens without good cause and that you are always capable of using whatever you experience to heighten your blissful life.  Dark spots become opportunities for further light and no longer need to be avoided, whether they be pain, guilt, fear, or whatever.  Again and again you will experience the wide open system of creation.

You will know and make use of your own creative powers, rather than feeling a helpless object in a fixed world.  Peace and knowledge of the rightness of life come from realizing that your world, your experience, your life is your creation.  This opens many new doors.  You no longer live in the two-dimensional world of either/or.  You avail yourself of the many-faceted reality at your disposal.

The confidence and fearlessness in which you then live necessarily release an immense amount of energy and joy.  As you lose your fear of pain because you can experience pain, your pain ceases to exist.  As you lose your fear of anger and hate because you can accept your own anger and hate, they no longer exist.  The energy is now free for other, better expressions.  You now become capable of pleasure and joy and no longer need to reject them.  Instead of creating loneliness, you can create relationships:  the bliss of the most intimate relationship with one mate, and the satisfaction of deep, open friendships.  Pleasure will no longer frighten you because you now know in every pore and cell of your being that you deserve it.  Your every pore and every cell are expressions of a consciousness which is now in harmony with your god-consciousness.

Many of you find yourselves in an interim state where you experience new joys and pleasures you never knew existed.  Life opens up for you as it never did.  But you also find yourself in the position where you cannot yet bear too much of it.  This is because you have not totally surrendered to the god-consciousness, or you have not sufficiently faced negative aspects in you and still cling to them.  Hence, you fear pleasure, which becomes more frightening than the grayness you still wish for and create, a grayness of neither pleasure nor pain.  You often want to painstakingly preserve this state of grayness without knowing that you do so.  It is a grayness which gives you comfort, but in the long run leaves you empty.

An inevitable manifestation of the continuous process of actualizing your deep self is the incredible creativity that blossoms out from your inner life.  You are creative in ideas, alternatives, talents, richness of feelings, and the ability to live with and relate to others.  You find the treasure of your creative powers, the wealth of your feelings, and the fullness of your own being.  Only as you go through the emptiness can you find that fullness.  And that requires courage which comes when you pray or meditate for it.  You must want the fullness and commit yourself to it.  This fullness of feelings, this wealth of creative ideas, and the ability to live in the now with all its excitement and peace, will deepen and widen.  It will not consist of mutually exclusive opposites but of different facets of the same fullness.  The times when you seem to lose it will come less often and be less severe.

Since you now have the power to create, you can create a deeper intuitive understanding of yourself, others, and life.  Your total attitude of relaxation about every part of yourself eliminates the need to cover up and escape from anything in you and therefore must make you aware of other people on their deepest levels.  You read their thoughts and understand the deeper connections within and between them so that you can help them, have empathy for them, and love them.  You need never fear and defend against others with your destructive ego defenses.

Outer manifestations must follow suit.  Your health will be glowing.  You will have vitality and energy as you never had before.  The energy you expend will always be replenished—and more so.  All your functions will be in perfect working order.  All your physical systems will be coordinated.  This will affect your outer looks; you cannot help being beautiful when you are in such vibrant health and harmony.  It will show in the grace and poise of your movements, the balance and coordination you express, in the tone of your voice, in the sparkle of your eyes, in the brilliance of your skin, in the suppleness of your form.  The improvement will come in varying degrees, but it is always possible.  Think of it as your possibility.  You will be able to materialize it because you already are essentially that person.  But you cannot make it manifest if you either have a stake in believing you cannot be like that, or if you want all that vitality, health, radiance and beauty for egotistical reasons or competitive power drives.  Then the inner guilt will not let you make it happen.

There are of course those who have these desirable qualities only in outer expression.  In that case, the time will come when these outer forms must break down before they can be rebuilt with inner content.  There is an innate system of divine justice built into all consciousness.  Whenever a life expression is sought that does not come as a harmonious outer result of an inner reality, it will either not succeed or will break down after it has been created.  The real inner guilt that psychologists all chalk up to neurotic guilt operates here.  Such guilt is neurotic only when it expresses itself in distorted perfectionism, which hides an  unwillingness to give up a real guilt.  So when you find resistance to happiness, look for the meaning and the areas of justified guilt.

Inner unity with your eternal self makes it possible to use your creative ability to explore any area of universal truth you truly wish to comprehend.  You now know the power of thought and consciousness and you can focus it as a result of the self-discipline you have learned.  Thus you can cultivate a creative receptivity to experience the eternal state beyond physical death.  This perception is not reliable as long as you seek it out of your own fear of death.  It is reliable only when you do not fear death because you now can die, just as you can be in pain.  Whenever you want something because you fear its opposite, the result cannot be reliable.  You can create only out of fullness, not out of need and poverty.

So the difficulty is in initially creating fullness.  Seeking the opposite of what you fear is an escape and leads to a split rather than to unification.  Exactly the opposite road must be taken.  You must die many deaths, right now, every day in your life, in order to discover the eternality of life.  Only then will you live fearlessly.

How can you die all these little deaths?  Follow exactly the process I described:  let go of the little ego, the little opinions, the negative reactions you have such an investment in.  You have to die to those.  The little ego with its little investments must die.  In that way you can transcend death and intuitively experience the reality of life ongoing.

When you live without fear of death because you experience it so many times, you will know that in principle physical death is the same.  You find it to be so by temporarily letting go of the smaller self, only to find a larger self wakening, which then unifies with the little self.  So you see, not even the little self of the ego really dies.  It is enlarged and united with the larger self, not given up. But it appears to be given up and you must be ready to take the plunge.  When this happens, a measure of eternality will manifest in your life right now.  It manifests not only by eliminating fear of dying but also in a more immediate practical sense.  It will keep you vital and youthful, giving you as it were a foretaste of the timelessness and agelessness of the true life.

Another outward manifestation is abundance.  Since real spiritual life is limitless abundance, to some degree you must begin to manifest that when you actualize your divine self.  If you can make room in your consciousness for outer abundance as a reflection of universal abundance, you will create and experience it.  If you want to experience it because you fear poverty, you also create a split.  The abundance you create out of fear is not built on reality, and its flimsy structure must be crushed again so that you can then let yourself be poor and dissolve the illusion of poverty.  Only after this can the real, unified richness grow.  Only when you first can be poor can you allow yourself to be rich as an outer expression of inner content.  Then you will not want to be rich for the sake of power or for outer gains in the eyes of others, or out of greed and fear, but to be a true divine expression of the abundance that is the nature of the universe.

Another outer manifestation of the continual process of actualizing divine life is the proper balance of everything:  the balance of assertion and giving in, for instance.  The spontaneous knowing when one or the other is appropriate comes from within.  Or consider the proper balance of right selflessness and right selfishness, as opposed to wrong selflessness and wrong selfishness.  All these balances and dualities will become elements in a spontaneous unification and harmony.  The intuitive knowledge of when, what, and how will come not because you decide it with your mind, but as a manifestation of inner truth and beauty that reaches expression on the outer level, appropriately and beautifully.

There will be a poise and a beauty in your whole bearing—a courtesy and chivalry will emanate from you that will never be ridiculous or invite being taken advantage of.  There will be order without a trace of compulsiveness, order in all things of your life.  Order and beauty are related and interdependent.  There will be generosity, a giving and receiving in one ongoing stream.  There will come a deep ability to be grateful and to appreciate others, yourself, and the whole creative universe.

A new freedom to be soft and vulnerable will make you truly strong and take away false shame.  Concurrently, you will experience a new freedom to be strong and assertive—even angry—without false guilt.  You will know and act from within because you are in constant contact with the wisdom, love, and truth of your inner divine reality.

The emotional loneliness that is the self-chosen lot of so many people gradually begins to disappear among you, my friends.  In your development you learn to be real, to function without your masks and pretenses.  Consequently you begin to feel comfortable in closer intimacy.  As you simultaneously cease to fear the pain/pleasure syndrome, true ecstasy and deep fusion on all levels must give you the deepest fulfillment a human being can experience.  You will progress to new heights and depths of experience, where you explore the inner universe in unison.  Loneliness and the torture of conflict about the need for and fear of closeness will no longer exist.  Such relationships fuse on all levels.  The abundance of the universe expresses itself in all areas of life.  You will feel it in the sharing, the respect, the warmth, the ease and comfort with which you can be intimate and fused with another person, or in giving to and receiving from another person.  The security of your own feelings will make you equally secure about being loved.

You will experience the deep satisfaction of giving, helping, fulfilling a task, and of being devoted to doing so.  You will rejoice in the ongoing creative process that is at work in it.

All of these are gauges for you, my friends.  These gauges are not to be used to put yourself down in impatience and intolerance.  They are gauges you can use to create deliberate inner visualization about any and all of these life expressions.  And then you will perhaps be more strongly motivated to search further for what still stands in the way.  This lecture will give you many tools and a lot of material for your work.

The love of the universe spreads over all of you and reaches deep into your hearts, my dearest friends.  Be blessed, be God.