“Being spiritual has nothing to do with what you believe and everything to do with your state of consciousness.”
-- Eckhart Tolle
Our consciousness shapes and molds the reality that plays out in our lives. And there are many levels of consciousness, each with different rules, principles, characteristics and attributes.
For example, if you reside in the victim consciousness (“Things happen TO me,” “Life sucks and then you die” are a few standard thoughts from this level.), you can affirm and intend all you want, but your consciousness, the driver of your reality, which believes affirmations and intentions are a bunch of hooey always gets the last word. When you spend most of your waking hours in that consciousness (and it’s a very popular consciousness), your channels are plugged up. All the good that wants to come your way can’t get through.
Because we live in a multi-dimensional universe, there are dozens of different levels of consciousness, oftentimes residing in one person. For the purpose of this discussion, I’ve broken it down into four major consciousness categories. Each of these levels has dozens of subsets, all that play out in different ways in our lives. Let’s just say that my goal is to move closer to level four.
- “The damn, not again” consciousness. The starting gate for most of us is some manifestation of victim consciousness. It varies from person to person, but the over-arching theme is we have no control over anything that happens in our life. The best we can do is work really hard, cross our fingers and hope that all the “shit” we hear about out there will somehow escape us.
- “The woo-hoo! This is getting cool!” consciousness. One of the next levels (again it plays out differently in each person) is where we realize we have a say. We learn there are energetic laws that are just as reliable as physical laws. We discover that our thoughts are units of mental energy that play out in the world just as powerfully as the principles of gravity or aerodynamics.
Usually we move in and out of this consciousness, mixing it up with other levels. We still feel separate and still retain some of that “poor me” consciousness. In fact, we spend nearly as much time talking about what we don’t want as what we do. We still believe the things we want are out there, in the future, something we have to strive for.
- The “Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.” consciousness. When I'm in this consciousness, I get up every morning, celebrating, feeling good. When I first began practicing my now-famous A.A. 2.0 program, all my dreams and goals came to fruition. My book hit the New York Times bestseller list. I traveled to six different countries on four different continents. I got all kinds of new writing gigs. Editors contacted ME which, if you’re a freelance writer, you’d know never happens. I got emails from people all over the world, telling me how much they liked my book. And while all that was really cool, the best part really was how blessed I felt. And this is where the distinction should be made. People believe they will be happy when they achieve a certain level of success, when they find the perfect lover, when they heal from cancer. But that’s not how it works. All those things are byproducts of being happy.
This is one chicken vs. the egg that is not in question. Being grateful, being happy, feeling blessed ALWAYS comes first. In fact, most people say that when their “stuff” finally comes, the material things they got into this “thoughts creating reality” business in the first place they realize they’re beside the point. And that the gift, the real gift, is the joy they now see in the little things—the cute little heart the barista made into the foam on the latte, the squirrel running along the fence in glee, the softness of cashmere sweater you pull over your head.
- “I am one with all” consciousness. In this consciousness, which I must admit is not yet a 24/7 theme for moi, there is no sense of separation from anything. This consciousness knows it is one with Source. It knows it’s an indelible part of the F.P. It knows you are an unlimited being, hooked up with all that is. In this consciousness, everything is eternal and everything else (your thoughts, your reality) is subservient to this bottom-line spiritual Truth. When we’re lucky enough to view life from this consciousness, we are totally surrendered to the “all that is” and know nothing is missing from our life. And, in fact, by yielding to that consciousness, by giving it permission to play out in our lives, we come to realize that all those little intentions and manifestations we so dutifully held in our consciousness are small potatoes compared to this. It’s so much bigger and grander and woo-hoo’er than anything we could have ever imagined.