Resistance to the Work

QA136 QUESTION: I’m afraid to ask if you could be more specific about recognizing a negative situation, and whether it’s a healthy resistance or just to recognize one’s own issues.

ANSWER: Well, a healthy resistance can only exist in a healthy psyche. A healthy resistance would be only applicable to unhealthy or distorted or destructive or negative aspects of living or being. But when we speak of resistance, we mean the opposite. It is the resistance to the constructive, to the health and happiness-furthering aspects.

Now, of course, in a way, every one of my lectures is an answer to this question. Every one of my answers to every question is an answer to this particular question. But let us be perhaps a little more specific, not so much about how to find it, because concerning how to find it, I have really said as much as it is possible to say about it.

You can find it and establish the resistance by determining your negative reactions to this Pathwork – your distaste, your disinclination, your fear, your anxiety, your tiredness, your excuses, your rationalizations – by learning to take them with a grain of salt. In this way you will determine resistance.

You will be infinitely more successful in this endeavor if you constantly keep in mind that the resistance is, yes, in part, looking at yourself as you are at this moment, and that may not be always according to your liking. But when you further see it from the point of view that you have a resistance to removing this self-punishing, self-defeating, unhappiness-producing mechanism in you – that is the crux of the matter.

Therefore, my friends, I say to you, all of you, find and determine within yourself how frightened you are of happiness, of productivity, of that which is easiest because you think it is hardest; how you choose perpetual emptiness and frustrations because you fear the possibility of a loss – because you ignore or refuse the possibility given to you to obtain happiness.

Determine within yourself in what specific areas you fear happiness and why. Where is your specific misconception that the fulfillment you crave for most, also frightens you most. For what reason are you frightened of it, so that you must be in the predicament of wanting and fearing at the same time, the same outcome. This is what produces so much dissension within yourself and therefore between you and others, and between you and life itself.

If you can, pinpoint that which you want most, put it down in writing, think about it deeply – what is what you most desire? – and then determine that you are not having what you most desire. Is it really that you want it and you just cannot have it? Or think deeply within yourself; can you determine that voice that is frightened by the very thing you wish, so that the further away the wish fulfillment is, the more aware you are of the wish, while the nearer the wish fulfillment is, the more aware you are of your fright of the fulfillment?

When you see this, you have a key to your frustrations and your troubles. Then you can begin to search yourself. Why you are frightened; what does it imply for you personally in this particular fulfillment? This has to be worked out specifically with each individual, for the case may vary.

But one thing we may safely generalize, abundance of the universe is always ready, is always there, always available – but man rejects it, resists it, fights it, fears it, and is even threatened by the thing he wishes most. Determining that, acknowledging that, must in itself bring a relief, because it is then brought home to the self that you do it. No unkind fate deprives you, nor your parents, nor your fellow creatures.

 

QA141 QUESTION: In eight years, I have attended nearly all of your lectures. And today I feel very dizzy; I’m very uncomfortable. Can you say something about this?

ANSWER: Yes. There is a very simple answer to this. You are now approaching a threshold or crossroads within yourself where you yourself, or part of your innermost being, says, “Enough of playing around; enough of the childish nonsense; enough of pretend. Let us now really begin to live. Let us now really begin to grow up. Let us now really use all that I have learned and put it into practice and become real and myself.” And the other part is frightened.

As long as you are really still determined to continue playing your little game, you could come here, because it was still all a game. But you are now very close to coming to terms with yourself: Are you going to do it and grow and be yourself, or are you going to continue playing to live?

This is why coming here is, in a way, perhaps the mildest form of resistance.

 

QA174 QUESTION: In working on myself and in working with other people, I encounter this resistance that you speak of. It seems all-pervading at times. Is there any positive aspect to resistance?

ANSWER: There are positive aspects to some resistances against negative things. But there is no positive aspect to a resistance to positive things. The resistance is based on error. It is based on an irrational threat, and this has to be unearthed.

The fact that you are becoming aware now of your resistance is very good. It is very helpful, because if you’re not aware of it, how in the world can you deal with it? Now you can truly confront it. It is pervading and it is subtle, and yet it is very distinct.

This resistance works both ways. It comes from a negativity and it creates more negativity. And therefore the negativity is involved in the resistance and must be specifically verbalized and concisely put into words so that you feel it and can challenge it. But I say, do not despair, because you can resolve it.

I would advise you to make the positive statement, “I am going to resolve it.” You see, the mood that comes out of you even in asking this question, you reveal, “I am a victim of my own resistance.” You cease being a victim if you declare, “I am going to confront this resistance, and I’m going to dissolve it. This is my decision.” This declaration has a power of itself if you mean it. You can choose whether or not you want to do this.

QUESTION: It seems that very often things are resisted for a time, and all of a sudden there’s a breakthrough. It seems that in some way resistance is a protective mechanism for the right time to let it go. You can’t bombard and demand that the resistance be dropped prior to that.

ANSWER: You can demand it of yourself. Nobody else can demand it. It is a difference when you work with your mind that is capable of conceiving. You see, there’s a great difference if you work with the body alone, or even with spiritual practices alone. There the resistance has a certain value. Because if the resistances break without your ego, your intelligence, your common sense, your will being able to handle it and come to terms with it, then indeed there may be a danger.

But when you do work with your mind, when it is your ego that makes the declaration, when you decide and say, “I’m going to confront it; I’m going to use the faculties I have in order to come to terms with it,” then you would shorten the period of suffering, of negativity, of needless deprivation, by breaking through much sooner.

 

QA184 QUESTION: I’ve reached a point in the work where I seem to have so many defenses against it. I can’t make myself read the lectures, and I can’t make myself write down my dreams; I can’t think about things; I can’t think about things to ask in my private sessions; I can’t meditate and I can’t reach my core. Could you possibly give me some suggestions on how to overcome this, because emotionally I don’t seem to want to overcome it.

ANSWER: Yes, that is another aspect of dissension. Now, my suggestion would be that instead of forcing it away, that you express it; verbalize it in your session; speak it out; give it free reign. Let it out all the way, no matter how bad it is – not only the resistance to this and that or these things you name, but also all the negative things you want to do, all the negative thoughts you have, all the negative feelings that are going on in you, and which you would want to express into the world, but which you are afraid of expressing and ashamed of.

If you can overcome that shame and that barrier, and give free reign and expression to this – more and more and more, every time in your sessions – then you come back here, and you will see how that has changed. And maybe then I can help you further. But much of the help will already come from doing this. Do you think you can do this?

QUESTION: I’ll try.

ANSWER: Yes. Let me add this, and of course this is also for other people, not just for you. Especially since the last lecture I gave [Lecture #184 The Meaning of Evil and Its Transcendence], this is really what is required in this work now. This is exactly what needs to be done, for everyone, and this is what seems hardest to do, as I have mentioned in this lecture.

When you have the difficulty of doing it, recognize, all of you, how strong your shame is, how strong your self-denial is, how strong your false idea is, that you oughtn’t to be the way you are, and how much you reject yourself. Realize in this very inhibition to do this, lies your obstruction to everything you want to attain, lies your self-division.

Even if you can do at this point nothing but recognize and say, “I am so afraid and so ashamed. I do not want to do this because I want to be more perfect than I am, and I cannot love myself the way I am.” If you can verbalize these thoughts before you can verbalize the direct negativity, you are already that much nearer to your core. But you cannot reach the core if you push away what is there.

And this is why so many religious approaches and spiritual approaches can work only very temporarily and by a conglomeration of positive circumstances that must converge in order to bring about the spiritual experience or feeling. But when the person is left unto himself in his everyday life, he cannot sustain it unless these things are met and dealt with, unless his Now is fully faced, accepted, verbalized, expressed, acknowledged, admitted, and the total self not rejected with it.

 

QA203 QUESTION: Right now I feel tremendous resistance about the Pathwork. I can understand that I feel closer to the need and therefore I would have greater resistance, but I’d like some help in how to approach this resistance which seems strong.

ANSWER: There are a number of deep-rooted misconceptions in you that are responsible for the resistance. Of course, my words are designed to possibly create an echo in you, and then continue working in your Pathwork so that the echo becomes a full realization. If you do not have an echo, keep it in abeyance. Do not force the recognition but keep it in abeyance that there may be something like that there.

Now, one of the misconceptions is that if you face certain dishonesties, if you experience clean, undramatized, unexaggerated as well as undenied pain, that this connotes that you are a very bad person, that you have no value, that you are beyond redemption. And this is one reason for resistance. Can you at all connect with this?

QUESTION: I’m not quite sure.

ANSWER: Now, I would suggest that you go and test yourself. What is really so bad that you feel your need and the pain of your need? Is it really the pain itself? Test it out. Try it out. Or is a belief attached to it, a belief that puts an interpretation on why you have to experience this unfulfilled need or that special situation in your life that creates your pain.

So the answer must come from within you. But with this directive, it may be possible for you to ask yourself the right question that opens the block. And once you come up with the answer, you feel in yourself, “Yes, I cannot feel pain; I cannot feel loneliness; I cannot really face a dishonesty without losing my balance within myself,” because you believe you deserve the pain. You believe that is all there is to life and you can never experience anything else because that is what is your fair due is.

Now, once you come up with this realization that you believe this, the next step is that you challenge this belief on the deepest level. If you do not know the answer, keep the door open. Let the answer come to you. I have often said to you, my friends, it is a sign of maturity and integration if you can leave a question within you unanswered – if you can say, “I do not know.”

You can begin to attain balance and maturity to do this deliberately, to ask yourself a question and wait for the answer to come to you from within yourself. The more honestly you wish the answer, the greater the likelihood that you will get an answer from within you – a deep inner realization. The more the stake you have not to know the truth about you, the more the door will be blocked.

I also say to you that there are many other subtle variations of this misconception, and you have to seek which approach to one and the same basic misconception fits you most, or you can most easily connect with. For example, there is a variation here that it is hopeless for you, that you cannot ever get out of your loneliness, that you do not have it in you to be anything else but what you experience of yourself now. Can you connect with this version of this? Yes or no?

QUESTION: At times I feel that.

ANSWER: Well, at times you allow this interpretation of yourself and of your life to reach your consciousness. At other times you manage to deny that you think this. Actually, it is much less a feeling than it is a thought. It is the thought that creates certain feelings. Now I say to you, instead of indulging in the thought, confront the thought and challenge it. Deal with it! Question it! Have a dialogue with yourself!

Open up for the possibility that this thought is not necessarily a thought of truth. And then you can ask yourself the next question: What is your stake in believing this? Can you possibly give an answer to this now?

QUESTION: So I could blame.

ANSWER: Yes, exactly! You have a stake in your hopelessness. And you know perfectly well if you stop resisting, the hopelessness will go away. Now, who is there to blame then? This is it.

 

QA203 QUESTION: I have a basic philosophy question about the Pathwork. It has happened to me several times in thinking about the Pathwork structure in itself, and the idea of being on a path and working toward certain goals which may take several lifetimes or whatever. And I reach a point at which I do not understand what the ultimate goal is. Can you clarify this for me?

ANSWER: Actually, the ultimate goal is described in many, many lectures. But these are words before you can get a feeling experience. Perhaps the best way at the moment to answer you is that very simply, deep within you, is an essence of life, a nucleus of consciousness and energy that you may call God, you may call the cosmic self, you may call your spirit, you may call the transpersonal, unified all-consciousness – whatever name you give it is immaterial.

The aim is that you know that this is who you are – that you lose the illusion of being this isolated dot in the universe. In order to attain this experience of your reality, it is necessary to eliminate those areas of your present manifest consciousness that created the illusion in the first place – misconceptions and negative intentionality and denial of truth. Whether the truth is in concept or the truth is in feeling makes no difference. This is, perhaps very briefly put, the aim of the Path.

QUESTION: It may seem silly, but I have a feeling of when this goal is attained, what then? What am I then? What exists then?

ANSWER: I would say that to deal with this question on an intellectual level would be completely useless and would only confuse you. There would be a lot of words that you could perhaps – some of them even to a certain degree apparently – understand. Yet this would even be more dangerous – this apparent understanding – than if you outright do not understand.

So there’s no point to “what then?” It surpasses the capacity of the human mind, because as I many times indicated, there are things you can at best – and only to a very limited degree – comprehend intuitively, but certainly not conceptually, logically and intellectually. This would only lead you to error.

Therefore, now work toward the more immediate goal, a goal which you can feel and face and deal with on realistic terms – your own deviations, your own self-deceptions, your own means of evading yourself. At the moment, from where you sit, you can use the possibility that you are an expression of the powerful all-consciousness and do not know it yet, but that this consciousness can manifest in you if you allow it, if you aim for it.

Then this consciousness will guide you step by step on your own path, and make you aware of what you need to be aware of at any given moment. The speculation of the philosophical nature in that way is in itself a trick of the mind to get you away from your immediate inner path. You do not need to dwell on that at the moment. If you should really need it, it will come through you when you open up to your larger self, when you feel the answer. Do you understand?

QUESTION: No.

ANSWER: Why are you so insistent to know what your human mind cannot know? What is the motive for this? Do you know that?

QUESTION: I suppose it’s a way of explaining it to myself and to other people who ask me.

ANSWER: Why do you have to explain it to either yourself or to others? Why can you not simply accept perhaps, on a very modest scale, that there is more to you than is manifest at the moment, and that your path is seeking this “more,” so as to become a more whole, a more giving, a more receiving person? Why does that not suffice?

QUESTION: I can’t answer that question.

ANSWER: Maybe you should try to answer it. That would be more important than making an attempt on my part to answer your question. You try to answer it and then come back. We can see, maybe I can give you more satisfactory answers when you are dealing with yourself and not with life outside yourself. All right?

QUESTION: Yes.

ANSWER: I feel you are extending a hook onto me.

QUESTION: I beg your pardon?

ANSWER: I feel you are extending a hook onto me now. What is the meaning of it? Can you express it? Can you be real now and express it? I would like to help you.

QUESTION: I’m not entirely sure I understand what you were saying by extending a hook.

ANSWER: You do not let it go at that. You want more from me, yet you do not commit yourself where you really need the help. [Long pause] No awareness?

QUESTION: I think I just, at this moment, have a great deal of resistance towards my Helpers.

ANSWER: Yes, and anger.

QUESTION: And towards the whole organization. I feel a great confusion with reality, and it is very frightening to me.

ANSWER: Can you perhaps accept the possibility, my dear, that your fear of life has made you blameful of parent substitutes, and that by facing this, by allowing yourself the irrational childish demands, you will come to the peace of your innermost being – and not by generalizing it and abstracting it.

Perhaps your very difficulty to let yourself be irrational is your key to your unhappiness. If you allow yourself to be wrong, to have faults, to be unreasonable, be silly, you will realize your rightness, your reason, your intelligence, and your beauty. As you accept your ugliness, so will you really know your beauty. And this is your battle now – your whole battle with this Path.

It seems to demand this of you. It is not this Path or these people who demand this; it is life that demands it, because only he who is honest with himself, who stops pretending and living in a false image, only he can partake of life’s beauty and abundance. And that is what life is all about.

Try it, and if you work it out with goodwill, you will find it. And also let the group as a whole help you. It will help you. There will be many opportunities if you expose yourself to them. Do not close up and make walls, which only serve to make you more isolated.

 

QA245 QUESTION: In respect to the attendance to the Guide lectures and the Q&As, why is there so much resistance to keeping the regulations such as paying admission and making sure your name is marked, and how does this resistance affect the Path as an entity?

ANSWER: This resistance reflects the most childish and destructive attitude in the individuals who act this way, or even who feel this way, without necessarily acting it out. It reflects the child who considers the authorities of this Path enemies who exploit him or her.

This vague feeling that is rarely made articulate and clear in the consciousness, exists as a projection of exactly that intent on the part of the person. The individual wants an all-giving parental figure who makes no demands and gives all. When such a parental figure fails to materialize, resentments, hostility and rage ensue.

All these feelings are, of course, only semi-conscious. I do not say totally unconscious, for that is no longer so in most of you who work on this Path. With only a little effort on your part, it should not be too difficult to ascertain these irrational attitudes, demands, projections and distortions. I suggest that this be taken up in your private sessions, that all of you question yourselves to what extent you too may harbor such attitudes.

This general acting out, in this area, can perhaps be best explained in the following way. In most other areas of involvement on this Path, such acting out would soon be discovered and confronted. So the personality seeks an outlet where the chances are that he or she goes undiscovered.

This seems to happen here, where there are crowds, where no Helpers officiate, and where the hope reins that these authorities can be duped and manipulated, and acted out against without reprisal. It is good that you ask this question and that this be brought out into the light of discussion.

I want to add here that the childish wish for a pseudo-benign authority – namely one who gives all and makes no demands, one who manipulates the world so that your acts have no consequences – is the displacement of the souls yearning for the real God, who indeed gives all abundance, all peace, all fulfillment, all happiness, but who also considers you adults with divine powers and qualities.

When you deny these qualities, and hence deny your giving, you will be so empty that your wish to receive will be unfulfillable and inexhaustible. It will therefore create a hopelessness that you unwittingly project on Creation, on God, and on whatever authority you have to deal with in your life.

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