Q: It’s like there is this little kid inside me that doesn’t make contact, and basically has a big “no”. Her name is Resistance. Then there are other aspects that are more sociable and functional, but basically I feel that there is a very dysfunctional core that is unable to experience joy.
John: That you won’t let move as only joy does. It doesn’t work in the way that you think. When you experience what seems like a child in you that won’t come out, what it really is, is that you won’t let your first self come out.
Q: Why do you call it the first self?
John: The first expressions of your self. It’s very easy to see in a baby or a small child, like when a baby smiles or laughs. Its expression comes from what is much deeper than what adults are accustomed to. Whatever expression is there is unfiltered. In the self that you’re accustomed to, you’ve developed a lot of filters. These filters are introduced by conclusions that you draw as you’ve grown up: drawing conclusions, jumping to conclusions, adding emotion to those conclusions, which forms a judgment. That judgment is a filter that’s in place and it stays there for the rest of your life, until you open and soften unconditionally in the presence of the activity of that filter, which in your self feels vulnerable, threatening and it can feel like something is dying.
Q: So, the solution is…?
John: You opening and softening in any circumstance and at any personal cost brings about the falling apart of your filters, the falling apart of all of the judgments that have come in place by conclusions that you’ve drawn in the past. As the judgments come apart, because of you opening and softening in the midst of them, that frees your subconsciousness to move. As it moves, your subconsciousness comes up into your awareness and into your nervous system, giving you an experience that could be really favourable or really unfavourable: for instance an un-understood joy; a movement of joy that is seemingly not connected to anything that you can understand, so it’s there without a reason.
There can also be the experience of a pattern that comes up that you’ve never known in your self before, which can make you feel like you are not your self. It can make you feel really strange in your self. If you’re uncomfortable with joy without a reason, or a pattern coming up that isn’t at all like your self, then you’ll easily draw a conclusion which puts together, with the use of emotion, another filter to protect you from that kind of joy or from letting a pattern come up that doesn’t feel like your self. So in that way, you can dissolve the barrier between your conscious self and your subconscious self, and you can also just as quickly put it back together, not even realizing, conceptually, that this is what you’re doing.
As you open and soften in your heart, unconditionally, in any circumstance at any personal cost, the levels of your self and the forms in your self naturally heal and come back into balance. The experience of that, in your body and in your nervous system, can be like waves of loveliness; they can also be like waves of terrible discomfort and chaos. It doesn’t matter what the results are. All that matters is what you’re being, and the balance that is restored in your self doesn’t need to be comprehended or understood as it opens.
It’s like a perfect therapy that you don’t need to be in touch with. You don’t need to be a cognitive participant in it. It moves and opens and heals because of what you’re being.
Q: This activity is what is kind of elusive; it’s easy to live around it, as if it is not there. I’ve lived so long around this, building up an apparently functional way.
John: What that really means is that you haven’t lived very long. Your real life span so far isn’t made of time. It isn’t made of the time that you’re doing whatever it is that you’re doing, or being whatever it is you’re being. To read your actual life span so far, you would have to identify and see all of the moments in which you are just simply opening and softening in your heart, and remove them from anything else that’s taking place; put them all together in a line, and that’s your actual life span so far. The rest of the time that would stretch it out to your sense of time in years isn’t real.
The real value of what has been your life so far isn’t measured by what it looks like, what it seems like; it’s measured by all of those moments put together where you were simply in your heart. All of the other moments and time are not in that connectivity. It’s like all of the other time, you weren’t really there.
As you open and soften unconditionally, your past – as life brings it up for you and it’s brought back in to your nervous system – while you’re opening and softening, time that was gone, where you weren’t really there, opens. So while you’re being what you really are, while the conditioning in your self comes up, your life span is opening in the present. So in that way, while you’re opening and softening, you are recovering your lost life span. You won’t recognize it as such; it’s after you’ve died that you’ll really see it all.
We don’t need to see it now because the only thing that really matters now is that we’re being the same as what our being is; that we are opening and softening. Any of the results of being that or not being that really don’t need to be understood. We always know, and we’re either being it or not being it.
Q: I follow you. At times opening and softening becomes conceptual. It’s like I seem to lose the ability to be it.
John: The levels of you are made of many. It’s a little bit like all of the levels of you are like members of a team. You can play something like soccer, and you can move in that in a way that the whole team is sitting down and not playing, except you. So you are then, importantly, running around the field with a soccer ball, doing what seems to be of such great value; that’s like opening and softening on an abstract level, where you are present in it, but not to the inclusion of the rest of you. So there really is something of value there, but it’s terribly limited.
The real value is in all of you being there. So the full openness and softness involves the all-of-you. The more deeply that you open and soften, the more levels of you are present.
Q: Thank you so much.