Excerpt from a discussion with John on February 23, 2011
Q1: I wanted to ask about pressure. I have the feeling that it’s happening everywhere. I feel like I’m a juggler and I have to keep the balls all in the air, and there are always more: one more ball, and one more ball, and it’s always getting more and more, and the pressure is to not drop one. It’s not from the outside, really. It can be anything. Would you like to say something about how to be in that? I also feel at work I have to be there, meet people, and not run off crying in a corner, which I would love to do sometimes. That’s my tendency. I would love to hide, but it’s just not possible.
John: As soon as everything moves into a deeper level, that will introduce another pressure into the self. There will be an increase of awareness, an increase of knowledge, an increase of ability, all within a self that is not ready for that. It’s not suited to that self. The self has to, in its structuring and change in its ways, be able to match the increase that is coming up into it. So that translates into pressure.
Q1: That’s one part of the pressure: to see in my self where I’m all twisted or when a reaction comes up and I see it and I feel absolutely weird. That’s actually a big part of the question, to see all my weirdness inside.
John: It’s not just that, but it’s that your self is called upon by you to function in a depth that it isn’t used to. Because of what you are letting in, your self is having to perform aside from your seeing weirdness or distortions or things that are in some way twisted or dysfunctional. When you know something of a new ability that is coming up, there is a pressure of your having to give form to that ability. So you have to realize what that new ability is within your self. And then the forms of your self, the structures of your self, have to change in order for you to manifest that new ability that you are even beginning to understand.
Q1: Is there anything I could do apart from not looking away, not hiding?
John: Really taking it on, taking responsibility for everything that is newly required of you in your self because of your having opened up to a lot more depth. Then you’re taking responsibility for the resource in that. You’re taking responsibility for the new ability in that. You’re taking responsibility for all of the changes that need to come about, and you’re taking responsibility for your part in the ‘us’ in that. So you’re carrying something significant. You’re taking responsibility for all of that.
Q1: It’s clear that’s also part of the pressure, because I do feel the responsibility.
John: It is an exciting kind of pressure. It puts you onto cutting edges in your self and it also has you realizing that it’s going to sort of stay that way. It’s not going to be like that just to get over a certain hump or a certain difficulty. You’re taking on an extra level of pressure that will sort of never go away.
Q1: I had a very short experience recently, realizing that this is how it is, that now there’s no comfort anymore. And I was in total panic, just for a few seconds…
John: This is good. It’s good that you had those few seconds of panic and shock because it has you realizing the reality of something.
Q1: Yeah. That’s when the whole pressure thing actually started. I think that was the beginning.
John: It’s an important thing to have that sort of few minutes of panic and shock. What it means is that you really get it.
Q1: It ties also with your talking about having no middle ground. Because before when you talked about the cost, to someone else, it was obvious that there is a cost… but recently it really hit me what that actually means. Like I can hear it for years but I don’t really get it…what it actually is. It’s easy to see it in somebody else.
John: And even you, in that panic and shock, are realizing much more of a cost. If you look at that as being a representation of something that is a lot more, then that has you being able to look in ways that you’re not even used to. Looking for something that’s similar to what has already put you into a panic and a shock.
Q1: So that’s consciously allowing it or…
John: Consciously looking for it and picking it up. It is like the shock of coming across a dinosaur bone and then you realize, well, maybe the whole thing is still underneath there. So now you’ve got a lot of digging to do, or at least some digging, to find out if there is something more. If you find a little more then the possibility starts to re-grow; and you’re taking responsibility for all of that.
Q1: And all the time while being, still meeting people and…
John: It requires you to be a kind of woman that you’re not, a kind of person that you’re not, a kind of self that you’re not. If you were already that kind of self and that kind of person, you wouldn’t be feeling the pressure.
Q1: Is there anything practical that can be done?
John: Picking up more of everything. Help to work with that increase of pressure by taking on a lot more pressure.
Q1: If I look inside then I know it’s when I’m getting stressed, my inside reaction gets… I have the feeling I’m in more than I come out with: the grumpiness or shortness…
John: Instead of it turning into a grumpiness or a shortness, change things in your house and your home. Find five things that you’re going to take more responsibility for and that you’re going to change, so the energy goes into something that’s constructive instead of the energy piling up inside your self and turning into a negative emotion. Having the grumpiness means that you’re incorrectly applying pressure. Seeing the grumpiness is another way of realizing a constructive way of letting in another little bubble of panic and shock because it has you seeing that you’re able to take on a lot more, that you’ve been putting things into a direction that isn’t going to work.
It’s an exciting thing to find. In a sense, the best way of picking up one thing is by picking up five things. If you pick up only one thing then it would be easy for you in some way to be grumpy in it. Whereas if you have to pick up one thing and you pick up five things, there won’t be a grumpiness because you’re really, really taking it on. If you pick up five things because you have to pick up one, then instead of being grumpy there will be an infusion of a really constructive kind of excitement.
There’s a similar principle in this, in that if there’s something important you need done and you can’t do it and someone else has to do it for you, ask someone who’s busy, not someone who’s not busy. Because someone who’s not busy isn’t going to do it properly and someone who’s busy is able to squeeze it in and they will do it properly.
If you have to do one more thing, take on five things and that will have you also moving things to a different level than what you’re accustomed to, which will have you end up taking on ten things.
Q2: Is it more beneficial, when you’re not necessarily busy on the surface, to take time off, to not be busy, because the busyness would bring up stuff?
John: The busyness has you in a state of movement. Being in a state of movement enables realization, whereas doing nothing and trying to realize can make realization more difficult. There is something that you know within, that you need to be realizing something and you don’t even know what it is. You’re better off to go through your entire house and clean everything and change everything than to take a couple of days off in the mountains and relax into a deeper state of realization.
Q2: So what’s the ingredient in one that would actually bring about… is it the increase in pressure that causes the seeing to occur?
John: It’s the movement, having to be in that, being in a state of realization while doing a lot, instead of while doing nothing. You’ll be coming across things in your doing that will be in very subtle ways within, having something to do with something that you need to be realizing. All of the things that you’re doing will be tiny little things that will be helping you realize. You may not even realize what that is, what those little things are. But the realization will be coming about, the realization of what it is that you need to be realizing.
If you know that there’s something underneath to find, dig everywhere instead of sitting quiet in the mountains for a few days and waiting for it to come out.
Q2: So just increase the pressure, which is in the digging, while…
John: Dig everywhere. In your house change things around, rearrange your closet. Take on much more.
Q2: This is a silly question but how much sleep do you require?
John: That’s for you to find out. Even if you were to run yourself ragged and you end up with the gold in your hands, you got it. Recovering from the raggedness, then, is a small thing.
Q2: So while you run yourself ragged, this…
John: I’m not saying you need to run yourself ragged.
Q2: No. I understand that… yeah. Be just fully present. Just to run yourself ragged without being aware is not going to do anything for you.
John: What it really brings about is the kind of seriousness that’s needed.
Q2: Because of remaining true in the midst of that increased pressure?
John: The kind of seriousness that’s required for you to be a bigger self than what your self is right now. A lot of things will have to change, so start out by changing everything. It brings your own seriousness of heart into form, even if it happens to be moving in the wrong direction or incorrect direction. It doesn’t matter that you’re in a state of movement, because it is the seriousness of something that you are knowing within, which has you taking that on and doing that.
Q2: That’s stripping away your comfort zone, really.
John: That would be a manifestation of your seriousness: stripping down your comfort zone. It’s not about stripping down your comfort zone. That won’t do it. But that manifestation of your seriousness would make a really big difference.
Q2: When you’ve taken away all your comfort and stripped down and you happen to be in comfort, does it hurt more? Are you pierced by comfort?
John: Then the comfort goes in and serves what it is that you’ve been coming from in taking on a great measure of discomfort.
Q2: How do you mean ‘serves’ that?
John: Comfort. Instead of serving a superficial level of your capacity as a person to appreciate some comfort, instead of satisfying that, it satisfies something much deeper than that. Your comforts will be used to satisfy whatever it is that you’re coming from. Change what you’re coming from because of your greater depth of seriousness and your comforts will be going to that instead of what they’ve gone to before.
Q2: At that point does the comfort serve you as much as the pressure?
Q2: At that point it would make no difference, if it was unconditional?
John: That gives you a sensitivity for comfort that you’ve never known before.
Q2: Is that defining comfort and discomfort? Defining what you know?
John: Yes. For you to really take that on means that what you’d be realizing, within, is that you really are ready for a bigger self. You not only need one but you’re ready for what it will take to build it.
Q2: In this last while there seemed to be a lot and I simply almost had to lean my head against the wall, but in the midst of that there was a certain straining that would do something inside. It was like when it reached that point, then there was a knowing of something really good happening. It was that part that I really appreciated…
John: You also went in a right way. The whole thing could have gone awry if you would have taken on more pressure and more strain and you would sort of inadvertently have used all of that to prove that even the first thing that you took on was too much; that your complaining self was actually right and you’re going to set out to prove that your complaining self was right by taking on much more and using that to prove you’re not able to do it.
Q2: I didn’t get that. Can you say it again?
John: Taking on more to prove to your deeper self that your knowledge in your deeper self is incorrect by taking on greater responsibility, failing in it, and proving the deeper wrong. So now you can be right in a superficial way. You can tell the deep within: “I told you so.”
Q2: You’re saying that’s what I didn’t do before?
John: You could have done it and you didn’t. It could all go awry if you move in a direction like that. It’s a sabotaging way of really taking everything on.
Q2: To prove something is right.
John: To prove that this isn’t going to work.
Q2: Taking it on, but all the while believing that it won’t work.
John: Making it not work in order to prove that it’s not doable. Setting about to really do it in such a way that it won’t work.
Q3: Does that have to do with realized ability and turning it into skill? To think that as I dig, the comfort goes with me. It goes into deeper and deeper levels, and as I dig there’s so much more room, and so much more responsibility opens up, and then as I go down, I fill it?
John: What happens in that is that you’ll end up changing how your self functions. Instead of discomfort slowing you down, discomfort begins to naturally speed you up.
Q3: Like I need to be smarter.
John: What happens with the really little self when pressure comes on is the little self gets stupid, gets a way of not having to take on responsibility because you’re too stupid to be able to. You have too much inability. Whereas if you really take that on, your self will develop in such a way that, when a lot of pressure hits, your clarity greatly increases. It doesn’t have to and you’re actually able to.
Q3: Sometimes I’m really hit with how much ability there is. The moment I stop thinking I’m not able – boom! Is there more that you can say about how I might make better use of those moments?
John: Realizing a much deeper level of seriousness and then bringing that seriousness right into your self, right into your person and seriously manifesting it. It speaks of completely stepping outside of the box of your self, so you’ll do differently; you’ll think differently; you’ll feel differently. What you are is simply different than what your self is, and you’ll put the requirements on the structures in your self to match what you’re stepping into. The value in it is that you’re taking on a seriousness concerning knowledge and you’re manifesting that seriousness in your effort to manifest that deeper knowledge and that the cost in doing that is not an issue in you. It does take that depth of seriousness. That depth of seriousness can manifest in many different ways. It isn’t about the manifestation; it is about the depth of seriousness. It requires that depth of seriousness for you to be able to uncover what ‘all-in’ really means.