Pathwork Steps
2016 Study Guides

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April 2016:

Pride, Self-Will, and Fear

PL 30

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Week 1:  Self-Will, Pride, and Fear PL 30

Week 2:  How the Ego uses Pride, Self-Will and Fear as “Ego Tricks”

Film and Reading Suggestions

In Connection
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Week 3:  In Relationship with Evil 

Week 4: Overcoming Fear of the Unknown

Daily Review

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Pride, Self-Will and Fear

Study Guide for Online Meetings on PL 30
Week 1:  Self-Will, Pride, and Fear PL 30
Week 2:  How the Ego uses Pride, Self-Will and Fear as “Ego Tricks”
Week 3:  In Relationship with Evil
Week 4: Overcoming Fear of the Unknown

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Week 1:  Self-Will, Pride, and Fear PL 30

Since the fall, these three attributes became stronger and stronger in the measure the fall progressed; they blur your basic light. 

It is the purpose of the path of purification not only to sense, as I just said, what your basic light is like -- for it is not the same with everyone -- but it is of utmost importance to realize that self-will, pride, and fear exist in you, to what degree, how they interact, how one is dependent of the other.  
PL 30
I will repeat that free will can be used for good or for bad; free will is important.  You cannot say it serves only good purposes, for, as just said, it can also be used for evil ones, but certainly self-development cannot be attained without the full use of free will. 
The will of God cannot be fulfilled unless you use your free will to do so out of your own accord, out of your own choosing.  Free will is the greatest gift you have been endowed with and without which you could never attain a Godlike status. 
But self-will is the will of the little self, the little ego.  

But how does that connect with fear, let us say?  If your self-will is strong -- and it can be all the stronger if it is unconscious, be sure about that -- you must constantly be afraid that the desires of this self-will will not be gratified.  So as there is self-will, fear must be coupled with it.  

Now let us turn to pride: what does pride mean?  It means that ego is more important than the other person, not only in the sense that may apply to self-will, namely that you desire advantages of any sort, but also in the sense of vanity. 
He who feels the humiliation of another person less than his own, still has too much pride.  And who does not feel that way, my friends?  Who is really and truly equal in his reactions to other people's humiliations as he is to his own?  None of you.  
PL 30
Week 2:  How the Ego uses Pride, Self-Will and Fear as “Ego Tricks”

The Meaning of the Ego and Its Transcendence PL 199

In the first place, the tricks of the ego are every conceivable negativity known to mankind: any fault, any violation of integrity, truth, love, and divine law. 

Since all these negativities and faults, as I have often pointed out, can be summed up in the triad of pride, self‑will, and fear, I shall show how the ego‑tricks use these traits in order to prevent self‑transcendence.

The trick of the ego is to make this appear as desirable and to make open, flexible movement appear threatening and/or humiliating.  Pride and fear must necessarily be coupled to self‑will, just as self‑will must be present where either of the other two dominates.  Every one of these aspects harbors the other two as well.
PL 199

Film and Reading Suggestions

Be careful what you wish for! 
An autistic writes about the unexpected consequences of being able to sense the emotions of others. Like the 1999 movie At First Sight, or winning the lottery, a sudden increase in perception, skills or finances can be hard to manage.
"An intervention to switch on my emotions succeeded beyond my wildest dreams, but it turned my life upside down."

Ideas for Getting 'Unstuck'
A strategy called ?design thinking? has helped numerous entrepreneurs and engineers develop successful new products and businesses. But can design thinking help you create healthful habits?

In Connection
Read the quarterly Pathwork Foundation Newsletter

Listen to the Lectures
Gary Volbracht created audio versions of all 258 Pathwork Lectures.  They are available on iTumes at no charge. You just have to download them one at a time!

Week 3: In Relationship with Evil
The Meaning of Evil and Its Transcendence PL 184
Every once in a while I refer back to one of the principles I discussed in our very early lectures, and that is the triad of man's main source of distortion and destructiveness.  They are: self‑will, pride, and fear. 
Offhand, it may appear odd to claim that these three traits are more responsible for evil than the actually evil traits, such as spite, cruelty, envy, hostility, selfishness, etc., etc.  How can pride, self‑will, or fear be evaluated as more destructive than, say, hate? 
It is never the overtly destructive attitudes that are the real evil.  If you truly acknowledge them, you remain flowing.  The greatest hatred, the most spiteful vindictiveness, the worst impulses of cruelty, if honestly and squarely admitted, if neither acted out irresponsibly nor repressed and denied, if fully accepted for what they are, will never become harmful.  It will diminish in intensity to the degree it is thus accepted, seen, faced, admitted, and must sooner or later convert into flowing, life‑giving energy.  Hate will turn into love, cruelty into healthy aggression and self‑assertion, stagnation into joy and pleasure.  It is inevitably so. 
Energy and Consciousness in Distortion – Evil PL 197

In our approach to self‑development, we find again and again that the basic evil triad is pride, self‑will, and fear.  We see how all else falls into this triad.  Everyone of these three attitudes (which are always interconnected) is a result of resistance and breeds further resistance ‑‑ or evil. 
Self‑will says, "I resist any other way but my way," and "my way" is so often antilife, antiGod.  Self‑will resists truth, love, union ‑‑ even if it appears to want it.  But the moment the tightness of resistance, of self‑will, exists, divine aspects are hindered from manifestation.
Pride is resistance to the oneness between entities.  It separates itself from others, elevates itself, and thus resists the truth and love that are creative manifestations of life.   

Fear of truth ‑‑ hence resistance ‑‑ negates the benign quality of the universe.  It negates the truth of the self, with all its thoughts, feelings, and intents.  This self‑negation ‑‑ a result of resistance ‑‑ is and creates evil.
PL 197
Week 4: Overcoming Fear of the Unknown
Liberation and Peace by Overcoming Fear of the Unknown PL 123
There is a very direct connection, my friends, between the fear of one's own unconscious, the fear of love with the opposite sex, and fear of death.  The connection between the first two is beginning to dawn on you, the third part of the triad may still be a novel idea,

First is the barrier between consciousness and what exists in the unconscious mind, pride.  It bars the way because you may not like what you find.  

The triad of pride, self‑will, and fear applied to the barrier between the self and losing the self in love to a mate are manifest.  

The triad of pride, self‑will, and fear applies to one's attitude to death in a way very similar to one's attitude to the love experience with a mate, only much more so.  Dying means giving up the final self‑direction; and this, strange as this may seem, in a certain way appears humiliating.  In order to avoid the humbling truth that the little self is not all‑powerful, man holds on to it in pride and self‑will, thereby creating ever stronger waves of fear.
PRS 123
Exercise on  Pride, Self-Will and Fear PL 30
I want to give another exercise in the form of meditation on the triad of pride, self‑will, and fear

See a bothersome situation from the viewpoint of pride.  In what respect are you in pride?  Then visualize this same situation focusing on how it would feel to give up this pride.  If the only alternative seems being humiliated, then start probing for other possibilities.  Ask for inner guidance and experience yourself without pride, yet also in dignity and without humiliation.  You have to make a real inner, volitional step to be able to see yourself in a new way that conciliates dignity and humility and leaves out both pride and humiliating submission.

Then do the same with self‑will.  Envisage yourself in a new state of reaction in which you are neither self‑willed nor spineless and exploited, in which you assert yourself and can let go and give in.  The proper balance will come from your core in specific ways for specific situations.  But the mind must be open and flexible enough to let in new possibilities, and the spiritual capacities in you cultivated, so that you entrust yourself to the inner guidance.

Have the courage to go through the anxiety that will be the first result when attempting to give up pride and self‑will.  Then, last but not least, you come to the fear. 

The fear cannot possibly vanish before pride and self‑will are being abandoned.  For fear is a product of both, as you know, at least in theory.  Also see the fear in terms of distrust of the universe.  Question this premise and experiment with new alternatives in this respect.  Open yourself for the divine reality to flood through you
PL 203

Daily Review PL 28

Exercise: Keep a record of incidents that disturb you. Focusing upon subtleties may help us from becoming distracted by exaggerating or over-dramatizing a situation. Notice feelings of discomfort, where your suspect you may be uninformed, ignorant, unprepared, or unaware.

Each week, see if you can relate with the sub-topic.

All you need is a ½ page of lined paper per day.  Create 4 columns. At some point during each day, jot down brief notes about each incident (limit:10 per day).

1. Two to three words to identify each incident (no details)

2. What feelings or emotional reactions came up

3. The judgments or conclusions you came to at the time

At the end of each week, read through your entries and complete the last column:

4. What do you notice today that you did not notice at the time? Are there patterns?

5. Using your preferred form of meditation (sitting, walking, or while doing 'mindless' chores) reflect upon your early childhood experiences. 

Do an exercise in trust in which you open yourself for the possibility that the universe will yield you whatever you need.  Experiment for the moment with this thought: "How would it be if I were to trust the universe, if in this particular situation I gave up the fear that is a result of my distrust and therefore of pride and self‑will?"  Allow your central core to fill you with an inkling of a state in which you can react without self‑will, pride, and fear.   


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