Increasing Consciousness Through Action – Ram Dass

At any moment, you are consciousness involved in a nature package… The nature package includes your heredity, your environment, all of your personality characteristics, all of the opportunities that exist at this moment, all of your attitudes, all of your predispositions, it’s the whole package. That package is functioning under the laws of karma or the laws of the universe. That package is unfolding; it’s just lawfully working itself out.

As you get more conscious, every act you perform increases the amount of the consciousness in the universe, because the act itself conveys the consciousness.

It’s quite apparent that as you work on yourself, on your consciousness, you continue to do whatever dance you’re doing, the dance evolves. You begin to see how the acts you perform can become more and more optimum to the conditions. For instance, when you’re about to change a law in a country you stand back, and you begin to understand the way the whole system works, and you see what the optimum act you can do is, and you perform it totally, without emotional attachment to that act, and instead an awareness of how that act works in the whole system.

In other words, it’s the ability to sometimes have delay of gratification, the ability to stand back to do what is the more optimum response.

The general rule applies that, “I will work on myself, since the work on myself is gonna be the highest thing I can do for it all, since I understand that as man up-levels his own consciousness, he sees more creative solutions to the problems that he’s confronting.” It always feeds back to the same place, where working on myself is social action, and I cannot be concerned with whether you understand this, because it’s also done totally without attachment.
Source: Ram Dass

Narcissism Versus Spirituality by Andrea Mathews

Rather, what it intends to facilitate is an awareness of how even narcissism can become an awakening.

First, everyone is a narcissist to some degree. We all have a primary concern for self, self-protection, self-actualization and self-facilitation and more. We all wish to fulfill our desires. So, in the same way that an infant, toddler and preschooler is narcissistic, we are all similarly narcissistic. We want what we want when we want it.

Our maturity comes into play when we are able to recognize that it is not always possible for us to have what we want when want it. A person who has a Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), on the other hand, not only never grew out of that early narcissism but has added a whole identity to it.

Most of us, have by now seen the list of DSM-V characteristics of the narcissist. It’s a very popular topic. And so it should be. Prior to the past four or five years this very common issue was barely noticed in books, blogs and media.

Many have now begun to recognize that a previous relationship or a parent was an undiagnosed NPD. They begin to pull themselves out of the dysfunctionality of that dynamic. They do it by drawing appropriate boundaries and learning how to self-nurture.

Many have also begun to look back over history. We see the NPD or the sociopath in leadership positions around the globe-with disastrous results. Currently, several different mental health professionals diagnose the Republican candidate for President of the United States, long distance, as NPD. And we can also look back at various cult leaders to understand that they also were probably NPD or sociopathic.

So it’s hard for us to imagine that we might be able to get something out of narcissism, particularly something spiritual. But we can.

First, those impacted by the antics of the NPD can gain exponentially by waking up to the fact that all bargaining is useless. It will not ever get the NPD to see or do something in a way that has one iota to do with anything or anyone other than the NPD. Bargaining is that magical thinking we do. We say, “If I do X, or think X or try X, then he’ll do, think or try Y.” And we try X repeatedly, until we realize we just can’t get past the wall created by the defense mechanisms of the NPD.

Once the person realizes there is no changing the NPD, to make them care, it becomes possible then to make major leaps in consciousness. They may begin to understand that the only person that they can help is themselves. They see there is no such thing as changing another human being. The best resource may be to go to their core to survive the pain of releasing this old trance state. This can be a time of enlightened sorrow for the person learning to get out of relationship with an NPD.

But it is also true that our own narcissism is part of how we bless the world. The self-interest that allows us to think about ourselves, to pray for ourselves, to heal ourselves, to seek the truth about ourselves, is nothing short of profound. We must be very focused and very self-involved in order to grow into a real person.

That doesn’t mean that we won’t also have and demonstrate great feelings of compassion for others. But it does mean that that will not really ever happen until we have first begun to have great feelings of compassion for ourselves. This thing of self-love is the foundational energy of compassion for others.

When we assume that what we should be doing with our lives is only being there and serving others, we contrive a false spirituality. It has nothing whatsoever to do with becoming real. We must learn first to be present in and with the self, to honor and love it with depth and real concern. When we are fully open, we can therefore, give that same honor, depth and concern to others.
Source: Om Times

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