Decision is Power

     When I was in my twenties, I happened upon the works of Scottish novelist Jane Duncan. The books had recently gone out of print and were still widely available. Today they remain out of print and have become quite rare. Duncan’s books are fun. They are easy to read and when I read them for the first time I very much identified with the central character. Throughout the series of nineteen novels, the author, writing in the first person point-of-view, examines and questions her life and the circumstances in which she finds herself. One of the phrases which reappears periodically is: “I am a person like this:” and she goes on to explain her role in what has happened. She owns her truth that she is a person who cannot walk away from certain conditions; who will not remain silent; whose behaviours are directly related to the kind of person that she is.
     As a young woman, this introduced me to a new way of thinking about my role in life.
     I had been taught, very clearly, about the kind of person that I should be; and I had been labelled by others: “you are too sensitive”, and “you just don’t think”. What I had never seen in others, or been asked to exhibit, was an understanding of what I really was ‘a person like’.
     It was a new thought. How would I finish the phrase I am a person like this: I always …? or, I never …? or, I wish for …?   A question like this cannot be unasked.
     In the intervening decades I have explored many ways of completing the sentence. Possible answers have been found and lost, for I am a person who does not remain stagnant. My self-understanding has grown broader and more complex as time and experience have passed by. Among countless other things, I can claim that I am a person like this: I am always learning, and seeking additional lessons.  
     Admiring Duncan’s ability to self-define caused a shift for me. As I thought about the line, “I am a person like this” I decided that I should figure out how I would move away from what adults had told me I ought to be and find out what was actually true. 
     I made a shift on the Mental Plane: entirely contained in the thought process. Curiosity about myself and my nature had been provoked: I began to objectively notice my reactions and responses. As I moved forward I observed and noted, and eventually came to know about the ‘kind of person’ that I am like. 
     Wayne Dyer talks about four possible shifts which can occur in the course of a lifetime. When we arrive in the physical form, we Shift from non-being into being. When we are fully embedded in the physical world, we adopt or develop a personality – an ego. The ego is driven by ambition which Dyer considers that to be the polar opposite to Spirit.
     Two additional shifts are available for those who choose to move beyond the limited perception of ego. The third is the making of a choice to turn and face towards Spirit, and finally, with the expansion enabled by this turnabout, we can Shift into a life of Meaning.
     Electing to return to Spirit is a very deliberate act. This is where the Mental Plane is vital in the process. For me, commencing the study of what “I am a person like ...” changed – Shifted -- my thinking, and moved my focus back to the Spirit which lies within as well as without.
     Each Seeker must make an individual Shift. Reading the works of Spiritual teachers may expose the mind to new concepts. Attending events, in person or through technology, might wedge a new idea into your thought patterns.
     Deciding is the most powerful act. Once Shift is accomplished, it provides a broad array of potential. In the act of turning around to look towards our Spiritual source, we become exposed to the 359 degrees of life to which we have been paying no attention. When we are willing to examine them, and the possibilities that are offered to us, then we are changed. Even if we choose to continue the path away from Spirit, the way we move forward has been irrevocably altered.
     Jo Leath has been supporting clients through change and growth since the 1980s.
     For a consultation, in person or by Skype click here
     For a free printable labyrinth click here