A Fight for Love

In First-Second Degree of Illumination bubble awareness, I believe I have to fight for everything that supports my need to survive. I label whatever I feel works in my favor as love.

I fight against whatever threatens what I believe I’m right about. Nothing’s more worthwhile or noble than that, in my opinion. Thus, love equates to defending for what’s right and against what’s wrong.

What’s the payoff?

What’s the payoff for equating all this conflict and pain is about love? Why all the fighting and competition? Maybe to sustain my storyline?

While in bubble awareness, I cannot view my story from a perspective outside the bubble. Only imagine it – which imaginings would arise from within the bubble! This is how bubble awareness supports and defends itself – and keeps me in it!

Within my bubble awareness, I attend to those things that grab that awareness – especially those that might threaten my bubble, my life, my story. Attention tends to add intensity value to my story with use.

Compelled to Fight

To fight the good fight, I must invest all my attention into creating and maintaining defense. That means developing strategies intended to battle for and win the greatest of causes. One of those strategies is to feel right, proper and justified, a reward for all who intentionally do good.

Another reward for furthering the cause is an increase in sense of superiority. Helping others attain what they need and are unaware of can feel fulfilling. Such feelings allow me to justify my sense of separateness as I stand alone for rightness. When I’m in my element of being right, proper,and justified, I’m a hero! If only others could appreciate that. After all, it’s just common sense to praise all who believe as I do and feel loathing or pity for those who don’t.

Compelled by Love

Love compels me to fight for it. Because I know what’s right and wrong, everyone else should too. I feel frustrated and alone when I must carry out my duty of defending right from wrong – all by myself!

My defensive strategies have become routine. I convince others to join my fight of right-thinking through enticements, and I shame or threaten them with harm. The last type of convincer, the threat of harm, I save for when I’m feeling desperate! It’s my or else card, which I play as a last resort. It can feel a bit embarrassing when I have to shut my mouth, curb my behavior, and leave feeling unloved. I imagine negative thoughts of on-lookers as they stare silently back at me.

When a strategy fails, my imagination goes to work convincing me… again… why love, as I perceive it, needs defending. I sometime resort  to self-deception, which can feel petty, yet, at least I feel justified for trying!

Those who disagree with my truth are the losers. In this environment, I experience a level of self-vindication that satisfies my need for self-validation. I love the deep affirmation of love I feel each time I do what is right, proper, and justified.

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How My Culture Governs My Experience

Within my bubble of limited awareness, by culture, I mean,  “the social behavior and norms found in human societies.” (Wikipedia) And by governance, I mean, “the way rules, norms and actions are structured, sustained, regulated and held accountable through the laws, norms, power or language of an organized society.” (Wikipedia)

When we agree on something, we add value to our defense of that something. As I parse that something into its constituent parts, I often find that I disagree in principle with some aspects. I find I favor those principle aspects that confirm my current beliefs and my place in the world (confirmation bias).

Where did I get my beliefs about myself and place in the world?

Perhaps I inherited most of my fundamental beliefs about me and the world from my ancestors through DNA and the influence of their culture. In which case, I didn’t just suddenly upon birth “invent” my beliefs. No! I came complete with a HUGE belief repertoire already. All supported, reinforced, and refined through education by the culture into which I was born.

Chief among these beliefs concerns limitations – what I can and can’t do, what I can and can’t have, who I can and can’t be. Self-regulation through cultural limitations on perception of reality.

How does my culture regulate my experience?

My culture instills in me my default point of view – what is right, justified, and proper. This defines the “I” that seems independent of while being part of – and out of which springs all my judgments, comparisons, and behaviors. Once installed, these beliefs become self-evident, self-defended, and self-limiting.

Infinite Self, therefore, perceives itself as finite self – defended by a culture of limitation – without external support, prompting, or force. Self-regulation!

It’s a systemic model of being in which each part regulates itself in support of the whole. Thus, my geopolitical cultural system limits, defends, and supports its particular version of reality through agreement among its constituents. Each member buying into the cultural self-limits by regulating themselves to its perspectives. Thus, “we” becomes “I”.

Within a culture, disagreement tends to exclude, while agreement tends to include self into that larger narrative. Thus, each “I” perceives itself in terms of “we”.

Why do I support self-limitation?

“Can’t we all just get along?” (President Dale, Mars Attacks, 1996)

I don’t mind a little limitation because it adds to my sense of safety. Over time, though, that sense of safety tends to narrow the parameters of what I will and won’t allow as acceptable experience. In the absence of culture, I tend to regulate self according to those parameters. Waddya know, self-regulation through my own culture of fear!

I tend to surround myself with “agreeable” people that confirm my cultural views. I start with my parents’ culture that I defend as my default perspective. With time and experience, I live my life in defense of it.

My personal philosophy confirms and sustains my culture that confirms and sustains my personal philosophy. It’s a self-referential paradox! This paradox, in turn, forms the basis of my judgments, justifications, and propriety. I’m always in agreement with and regulate myself to the cultural limits I experience as this story. MY culture’s story becomes MY story. MY culture’s philosophies become MY philosophies. And visa versa!

Who am I as a result?

I perceive myself and my world in terms of the culture to which I subscribe. This cultural bias defends itself in my perception of “what is” and “what is not” – reality. I tend to ignore or not perceive outside that bubble of limited awareness. True self-regulation!

Therefore, I am the cultural limitation I impose upon myself in order to agree with and sustain and be sustained by that culture of limitation. Even my disagreements are framed to regulate myself to that standard. It’s a paradox of self-reference, self-regulation, and self-defense. It’s life within “the bubble” – the ultimate paradox.

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How My Belief in Law Affects My Philosophy

My limited awareness bubble is based on laws and my need to follow them. To follow any law, I must first justify it as a law. My justifications create a paradoxical reality where reason considers philosophy as evidence in a cause-and-effect story. This convinces me that laws are real.

Therefore, I believe and obey external laws and their appearances of cause and effect in nature. In a similar way, I obey my internal laws, which manifest cause and effect of my philosophies in thoughts and emotions.

My internal laws seem as inescapable in their power over me as the undeniable power of external laws. My acceptance of fear as an internal law gives it as much power as the external law of gravity.

  1. External laws teach me about relationships within the natural world. This through a physical process. This insures that cause and effect are carried out in compliance with the laws that that process represents. Thus, I perceive interactions between forces of nature, like energy, matter, their functions and forms.
  2. Internal laws teach me about my *paradoxical relationship with self in its own world. This through a nonphysical process that insures that cause and effect are carried out in compliance with the laws that that process represents. Thus, I experience interactions of cause and effect in how I interpret my thoughts and emotions, choices and perceptions.

*A paradox is a statement that, despite apparently sound reasoning from true premises, leads to an apparently self-contradictory or logically unacceptable conclusion. Wikipedia

My Paradoxical Philosophy of Fear

My philosophies and the stories that define them are paradoxical. A philosophy keeps me accountable to laws through obedience. I feel I can’t control laws, yet, I can justify them using a paradoxical philosophy.

The stories I create to represent my philosophies string together the paradoxical effects of my thinking process. One law can have many philosophical cause-and-effect stories that defend it. For example, fear as a law dictates that my day-to-day story-lines should follow a philosophy that supports a fear of: lack, death, suffering, pain, being alone, etc.

Paradoxical Fear Equations

My logic equations illustrate how I process a paradoxical philosophy in defense of law. My equations protect and support my understanding and trust in law. This reminds me of an incident when I believed in and obeyed fear as a law while shopping. I backed that law with a philosophy of lack that supported it. At checkout, I realized I lacked the money for my purchases. That’s when a fear of lack kicked-in – “See, you were right to be afraid!” said my inner storyteller. My philosophy hijacked the law of cause and effect to justify my fear.

This fear-based illogical logic equation looks like:
Lack + Fear = Fear of Lack

A fear of lack is a fear of not having so, what I feared at checkout wasn’t about money. It was about not knowing what was going to happen next. That kind of not knowing can feel like an eternity of psychological torture. At any moment, I can find myself wanting to escape from a future I fear might happen. That experience confirmed that I am always subject to my beliefs through my process. I realized then that I was living with paradoxical equations that differ from my present intentions.

This fear-based illogical logic equation looks like:
Not knowing + Fear = Fear of not knowing

Ultimately, my thinking supports a process in which paradoxical philosophies defend paradoxical laws.

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The Right to Serve and Be Served

I Have the Right!

I live in bubble awareness where being right confers a sense of having the right to place expectations on others.

Insistence upon exercising my right validates my belief that I’m living as a separate entity. As separate, I place a level of importance on my needs that others should meet. That level of importance takes the value of others with the intention of declaring them as my own. The more service others give me, the greater my perceived value.

I want to believe I have the right to be served without serving. Taking what I value from others – as though it were mine to take – gives me a sense of authority. As I see it, that authority gives me implicit permission to choose and judge the way others should serve me.

In my bubble, authority means “the right to have, do, and be what I want.” This and my sense of separation gives me a feeling of power  over you. That assumed power validates itself. My concept of rights stems from the fear associated with survival – where the strong survive and the powerful prey upon the weak.

When I judge that I have been adequately served, I feel whole. I feel unwhole when I judge that I have been inadequately served. In this way, I experience my internal self-judgement as an externalized projection, in which I see service in terms of competition between opposing states of mind.

I Sustain the Right

In my separateness, I perceive I must exert my will over that of others to survive. To satisfy this constant sustaining of needs and demands of the will, I expect others to serve me. This creates an emptiness I can’t fill on my own and so I assume power over those I need to serve me.

Recognizing I have needs is my reminder of my choice to defend separation. In separation I can compete and win even when I appear to be losing. By making my opponent appear weaker than me.

When I DO something, it’s right and/or justified. When you DO the same thing, it’s questionable or somehow wrong. Check it out –

When I… I’m… When you do the same thing, you’re…
pass a test… smart! lucky or you cheated.
say it… witty. offensive!
slip and fall… embarrassed. a klutz!
spend money… thrifty. excessive.
tell a falsehood… realistic. a liar!
feel hurt… justified. a drama queen!

This way of thinking maintains my superior view of life. Serving my needs is what’s most important.

I Re-serve the Right

As need dictates my reasons and my rights, I  justify the struggle others must face to fulfill those needs. I provide them a service in exchange for their fulfillment of my needs by setting up a belief in the dominance of my demands. This makes one pause and wonder who is really serving who?

Perspective makes a difference. When I view the workers in a beehive as slaves to the queen, I maximize the value the queen plays in the benefit to the colony. When I view the queen as the slave to the colony, I maximize the value of the workers. This based on how I view myself in relation to others.

In any system there are interdependent, complementary “serve” and “be served” characteristics. By changing perspective to one of equal service to one another, the slave concept disappears.

A tiny shift in perspective results in a huge shift in perception.

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How My Shattered Ego Invites Me to Transform

What happens when my ego is shattered? Transformation? It feels more like deflation. Yet, could a shattered ego lead to something useful? If so, why does it hurt so much? I like Friedrich Nietzsche connects these concepts:

“A thought, even a possibility, can shatter and transform us.”

I’ve noticed that I’m pretty resistant to new ideas – particularly those that directly affect me. Like my personal self-image. My ego’s job is to keep me safe by using tested and proven methods to “keep me in line” (safe!). One of those methods is pain, which has kept me in order throughout my life and has been a significant factor in my learning process. Thus, upon shattering my rigid ego formula, it’s likely my ego will use pain to reign me in, so to speak.

A shattered ego is one that has fought a battle against change – employing whatever strategies and weapons it has at its disposal. Of course, favoring the previously tried and proven – like pain, humiliation, shame, and guilt. Its success has kept me firmly within the boundaries of safety, propriety, and rightness to this point.

What if on the other side of shattered – with its attendant emotions like humiliation, deflated ego, and loss of self-trust – is transformation? I’ve just peered briefly into that realm – before falling back into bubble awareness. Could I use the opening offered by a shattered ego to transform myself beyond bubble awareness and embrace who I AM?

Thoughts that Transform

I’m learning that everything in my bubble awareness “reality” is merely a concept, a thought. Through sensual perception and emotional feeling, I give those thoughts power by imagining them as things of substance. Using the reinforcing power of justification and confirmation bias, I can substantiate anything at any time.

Change a thought, a judgment, about something or someone and they change to me. I literally change YOU by changing ME – perhaps more accurately, when I change MY mind about YOU and/or ME, I transform my world.

It’s just a thought, a possibility… 😉

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