This blog post starts out mundane, but as we get longer into Sunday it becomes very profound.
On Saturday I worked almost the whole day bringing you the two episodes above. Then I streamed briefly on Twitch, replacing the sign on the creative map from
Home and Family Issues
On Sunday I first cleaned the kitchen taking due care not to move things my father left around the kitchen stove. He sometimes gets upset if someone moves them. but I think the kitchen environment would be more harmonious by storing them in perhaps a cupboard.
I decide not to eat breakfast until I have reached some deeper conclusions today.
Eating is often an escape to suppress some deeper issues. I ponder the fact that my father hit me unprovoked when I was around 11 years old. And that neither of my parents want to acknowledge this as a serious issue. I would like to hear them say that this was unjust — they don’t need to say they are sorry, because what happened has happened. I think it is unhealthy to avoid this. Avoiding others is avoiding yourself. Thinking about this creates a warm energy around my root chakra, like a latent energy waking up.
I hope these things of the past can be resolved and that all of us can happily move forward.
I am curious if anyone reading this has had these problems and experiences? How did you resolve them?
Afternoon Notes for Personal and Universal growth
I listened to this weeks episode from Leo Gura of Actualized.org, which usually is packed with deep insights. The video is 2 hours and 47 minutes, and it seems he has also worked double with his YouTube content this weekend!
To get the most out of the video, I took notes to apply it on my own life and share what I learn with you. My notes could be of some use as a summary of the video, but note that I am bringing along the a different perspective than that of Leo and I hope you stay both open-minded and critical to create your own.
Here is one of the many images illustrating spiral dynamics:
You can also read about spiral dynamics on the website http://spiraldynamicsintegral.nl/en/about-sdi/integral-theory . But keep in mind that this site seems to leave out the mystical and non-dual stages beyond stage turquoise from its model. From a non-dual perspective this is not strange, nor does it actually matter =). Now onto my notes
Even the ad before the video is really helpful, Sam Ovens from consulting.com talking for 12:34 minutes about how many things we do that are just maintenance tasks, keeping us from growing. And that we should seek to eliminate theses if possible, if not, automate them, and if not that, give the tasks to someone else. Listening to the video reminds me how little time per day I spend in contemplation or meditation, and how unplanned my days have become the last weeks. As Leo mentions at the end of the video, meditation is the most documented most effective tool for people to move up along the spiral, followed by mindfulness and psychedelics. Other tools are journaling and reading.
Already at 7:30 into the video from Leo I get ideas for the b³O-series; to bring vision-logic, mystic and non-dual thinking into the next three episodes. One thing I want to try is to see if I can repeat something I did while playing in 2014 or 2015, and have written about before on this website. What happened was that I relaxed my body and projected love into aggressively programmed mobs in Minecraft, turning them non-aggressive.
A while into the video I think to myself: Is this worth my time? Should I be meditating? I use this to focus my listening, if I am going to watch this episode, I might at least draw out as much new applicable knowledge, insights and inspiration as I can from it.
At 11:30 Leo mentions how stages of development stack on each other, and how unjustified it is to criticize people depending on the stage they are at. I use the sensation of getting triggered when he mentions people being stuck and also being those that unjustly criticize.
- Am I unjustly harsh on myself?
- Am I unjustly harsh on others?
Opening Mind & Body
In the same instant, I feel my mind opening up. What a bubble it usually is in regards to what development is possible! I sense that there are infinite levels above me to reach for, naturally so, since creation must be infinite. If there is a bound, what is that but just a thought? With the same reasoning, there must be infinite levels below me, and also in infinite directions, less definable as up or down.
Since I feel cold do yoga wheel poses to open my hip, oxygenate my stomach and improve the general circulation of blood and other liquids in my body. Taking a photo is a great way to keep track of progress and spot problematic areas, especially if you are doing yoga on your own without a good teacher.
Continuing the video. At 18:30 Leo has talked about levels in society, pulling you up or down in levels of development. I think what a golden opportunity that exists for everyone with access to internet today to consciously select what information and cultures they expose themselves too; ideally you want the highest level possible in all aspects of your life: thought, spirituality, business, relations, health, exercise. Something to be aware of is to make it a mix; it is important that is not too centered and makes you stuck by your personal identification with a few single sources, no matter how good they are!
Pushing Towards Higher and Other Perspectives
After almost half an hour, my attention and confidence dropping a bit. I realize how easy it is to get relaxed fall back into my old self-image, which is inactive and keeps thoughts to itself. How easy to not write what I think in this blog, and just keep the things to myself! But is that kind of closed society something I would like to have in the future? I push myself off the yoga mat to write the insights I almost let slip
Leo speaks about evolving and that I or his viewers might even outgrow him. I remember how I once was such a high level of awareness that I could predict or even sense that I WAS every word he spoke, already before it came. So, yes, that is certainly possible. At the same time I see how it is necessary to take other perspectives and be humble. How can I contribute to evolve society and raise consciousness? I am not that confident speaker who can talk for almost 2 hours on such a profound topic. Not yet, I was not, even when I was intuiting all the content. But I can become. And so can anyone.
At 30 minutes Leo talks about perspectives. I resonate with how extremely important this is, taking different perspective as not just a word, but a practical skill to apply in life. I realize how much of taking perspectives I do unconsciously, This means there is much room for improvement there is by practicing it consciously, something I have done in the past. I look forward to taking up this practice again. It is actually really cool to do not just with actual people, but with people who has written biographies you read, people you watch on movies or YouTube and even animals or inanimate objects. It can truly open up to more profound realizations that all of reality is consciousness!
It’s almost one o’clock and I fight off the reptilian urge to run to the kitchen and binge on bread and peanut butter by breathing deeply. I am committed to watching the video and writing this blog.
I ponder how to balance satisfying my own selfish survival needs while being conscious enough to not damage the environment and grow. As I go up for a ‘middle way’, preparing a green tea and a bowl of soy yoghurt with fruit and müsli:
Leo speaks about society or people romanticizing the past societies, be it hunter-gatherer, tribal or rural. I see how a large trap in my current situation is getting stuck in the ways my parents and siblings talk and behave, which is a lot about everyday things; what is good or bad and reiterating the past with almost always the same ideas, beliefs and opinions, very closely identifying with who is who, if they are Swedish or not, if they are family or not, male or female, etc. A way out of this is to use my mind to consciously imagine, envision and talk about future possibilities for evolution, in this way I can re-shift the focus. With my parents it has been almost constant battle against negativity, which is only brought by believing that the past has to reoccur. But time and time again, we are proven wrong. And even if the past reoccurs, it takes on new forms to learn from.
On Two Wheels
I eat a bit of the yogurt, but leave most of it for after I take short bike ride, still listening to the episode. There is still light outside. As I think about how to remember all the insights I might get while away from the computer, I sense how I can value my blog more by presenting, editing and promoting all the information I encounter better. I hesitate at choosing a hat to wear. I don’t want to wear the one from my ex-girlfriend made of wool. Nor the newer one I got from her mother made of polyester. I think that we should really have new materials that are neither made from exploiting animals nor dependent on finding fossil deposits of oil. I go against the habit to test myself against the elements.
The insights as I bike are a humble sense of acceptance as the way to think about my previous enlightenment experiences; yes, I was the whole reality, total non-duality, but my circumstances will never be exactly those again. I can still strive for enlightenment in a new sense.
I feel a deep sense of joy in my chest when Leo speaks about the future and how consciousness is evolving all of reality, the dream experience. How to be awake and immersed at the same time. Aware of everything not being real, but still evolve. I feel like questioning all the ways I am thinking and doing things. What if there was some food for example that was completely non-addictive and kept you at hundreds or thousands of levels of higher awareness and levels of productivity? One simple example might be various psychoactive plants. It seems still very few have been explored, and only by a very limited group of people, scientists, tribes and some open-minded self-explorers. The body chemistry is so complex, an an amazing machine to truly revel at. I feel like sitting for maybe half an hour just marveling in the thought of the body. And even such a thing as the bike I am on, how easy to take it for granted, disregarding all the steps of evolution it before it could be invented, all the work and technology necessary to produce it in such an exemplary form as this:
Turns out that I return without any problems, biking for about 10-15 minutes in the near zero degrees. As I eat the yogurt pondering how to not fall into lower consciousness, I sense that gratitude is important. With true gratitude I can eat without feeling guilty, I sense how my body is worthy all that work that has gone into bringing fruits from all over the world to sustain it. I also realize that saying a prayer before a meal as practiced before in this country by devout Christians is nothing to sneer at; it serves a similar purpose! But I also see how being grateful has been unjustly juxtaposed with a sense of debt and/or guilt; here stem a lot of problems that I have observed as an intrinsic part of protestant culture. Just thinking about it pulls my mind into it like a maelstrom… The vision of a better more evolved future acts as the counterweight. Back to Leo, bring me mind-food for a higher consciousness!
Caving in to Cravings
Now at almost 3 in the afternoon I grab a few seedy crackers with peanut butter, warm a soy milk with cacao and blueberries and think about how easy it is to get attached to stories; our personal story, those of others we think we know, stories of families, countries, civilizations etc. Believing them without challenging them is very stagnant. Take the model of human biology and metabolism for example. Nothing prevents there from being more factors than just the standard nutritional compounds to regulate our well-being. And since thoughts evidently affect the body, we can also change our body chemistry by choosing what we listen to, read and experience in other ways. My personal experience is that while fasting for a prolonged time, the information intake alone is enough to invoke for example a psychedelic experience. My theory is that as the body processes gets freed up from the usual wear and tear of regulating carbohydrate, salt, cholesterol (basically all the pillars of welfare diseases), it starts to be able to produce itself more interesting complex compounds. One such example is 5MEO-DMT, by many described as a drug the gives you the consciousness of God. If you are interested in psychedelics as a method of self-realization, I can recommend https://www.dmt-nexus.me/forum as very friendly and informative.
Curious about the relation between my native country and psychedelics, I come across this article: http://www.oaktreereview.com/a-brief-history-of-swedish-psychedelia. I make a list of plants for later exploration, should I still be in Sweden come spring and summer.
I want to jot down, both for you and for me, the lines of development outlined by Leo, where you can be at different stages along the spiral dynamics model. These are
- Cognitive and values
- Career and livelihood
- Health and diet
- Interpersonal relationships
- Metaphysical and spiritual line
- Political development
- Psycho-sexual development
- Kinesthetic development
I suggest honest self-evaluations on where we are along these lines, and how to get to the highest level on each in the quickest way. We can ask ourselves, how would I look like at the next stage of each development line? How would my life look like?
I spontaneously redo the 16 personality test based on Myers-Briggs Type Indicators, and see that I am different than a month or so ago. I get INFJ-T, instead of ENFJ-T. I see that I can balance myself by being more extrovert, observant, thinking, prospective and assertive.
I have a deep personal emotional insight: I am secretly extremely envious of people with functional loving families, completely open with each other with no real problems making them unhappy. I imagine a completely vegan and highly conscious family living with abundance and compare myself as being ‘stuck’ with a narcissistic carnivores which I still feel are amazing in a multitude of ways. I think admitting these suppressed feelings I harbor are important.
Finally I want to question the partial results of the personality model as fixed on opposite ends of the same axis: How about emphasizing the merging the aspects of each division, instead of using the test purely to fit people into roles? For example, strive towards being both intuitive AND observant, without perceiving contradictions. Immersed in physical experience focused with clarity and facts WHILE juggling various ideas, dreaming, fantasizing and questioning.
Exercises Questioning beliefs
A good practice for self-development and questioning limiting beliefs is to replace words in sentences. For example, when Leo speaks about masculinity and femininity, try reading the following and feel how they sit with you:
Most men lean towards the aspects of care, connection, compassion, feeling, relationship and community.
Most women lean towards the rights, autonomy, individuality, agency, thinking and freedom.
As a further exercise, try imagining that this is what is actually true, right now, this is how the world is. Or even better, than no matter the gender, all these aspects are or are soon to be actualized in you and the people around you.
Eventually, I cannot handle not eating, and go to eat fibrous bread, crackers with peanut butter, soy milk and frozen berries. These are all high in carbohydrates, so I try my best to mix in less addictive food sources, knowing that the binging will end when the stomach feels full: Avocado, rucola and cherry tomatoes.
Continuing on, I think a good point of Leo’s is that mystical teachings were not taking into account the complex situation of the world today. Of course, all of them can lead to enlightenment, but keep in mind that they were written around a certain cultural context, and be aware of but don’t become too enmeshed in particular details or circumstances of history.
The best success I’ve had obtaining mystical non-dual experiences is by interpreting symbols in these types of texts as freely as possible. As an example, Tao te Ching were in ancient China, and speaks about rulers of the country, villages, lesser and higher men etc . The ruler when I read is both the decision maker perceived as myself, but includes people outside. The country is any perceived domain, the body, the room, the neighborhood, the country, the whole world, the universe and so on. It can also be non-physical, for example a domain of knowledge. The men might as well be women, children or any being, projecting both inwards and outwards, in the current present, past and future.
Expansion of consciousness and personal development can be done by contemplating what examples would be of all the independent variables Leo lists at each stage of development. Listening to the various perspectives listed by Leo of how various stages, one can as an exercise try to avoid identifying oneself in two manners:
- Subscribing to what is said as the norm, not imagining that their might actually be a bunch of people from the stage who do not have these biases against other stages. Imagining the world would be perceived from those people frees up the mind considerably.
- Identifying ourselves as being ‘in a stage’, and that stage being the permanent one. These are just more persistent thoughts forming parts of our current self-image. By bringing awareness to them, we can transcend them.
Finally as I become more aware of just being and existence itself I bliss out to the last 45 minutes laying on the sofa bed. I leave you with my final insight that thinking for example self-inquiry is more important than these other tasks can be huge trap, especially if you are interested in maintaining personal integrity. Instead, do everything as if you might just die doing it!
Summary of My Deepest Insights this Sunday
- There are infinite levels of growth below and above the idea of ‘me’. And infinite other directions. Always.
- There is always learning possible from NEW and DIFFERENT sources
- Perspectives can be taken, joined, practiced in infinite ways to evolve.
- Genders, personality types and levels of development are not rigidly static and polar opposites, but can rather orthogonal axes which can build upon and contribute to each other.
- Mystical experiences are very dependent on context, even if enlightenment itself is absolute. Expanding of consciousness can be done in infinite ways.
My more mundane tasks for the evning are cooking chickpeas for tomorrows lunch and streaming for 40 minutes in b³O on twitch.tv/avionphoton.
Since I want to have the game on full screen I’ve had trouble staying on top of messages in the chat. To solve it I install this nice auxiliary tool and set it up to get notified whenever someone types. To have an even nicer sound than the default ones I record this pop sound with my mouth: https://bjornkennethholmstrom.files.wordpress.com/2018/11/pop.mp3
I surprise myself with how fast I intuitively set up the menus just by having a little bit of self imposed time pressure. Finally going live on twitch.tv/avionphotongaming!
A stream with nobody watching! But I still enjoyed, got the chat feature set up and planned the week ahead for more streaming during daytime, hopefully catching some more viewers! I also found a course I might take for $9.99 when I have little bit more secure account balance come the end of this month!
Now I will do serious self-inquiry for 20 minutes followed by planning tomorrow and the week while I fall asleep for 40 minutes.
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