[overview] Our question today concerns the principle of spiritual pride. We are wondering how it fits into the sequence of catalyst that each of us works with in our lives. We all work with pride at some time or another. Some have said that it comes up last in our pattern, that it is sort of the culmination of all of our work. We would like for Q’uo to give us an idea of what spiritual pride is and how we work with it and if there is any particular time that is more appropriate to work with it than any other?
We are those of the principle known to you as the vibration, Q’uo. And we greet you in the love and in the light of the one infinite Creator, in whose service we are. We feel very privileged to be called to your circle at this session of working, and we bless and thank each within the circle who has come to seek the truth. We share that seeking and are glad to share our poor thoughts, as long as each of you will feel completely comfortable, listening without needing to agree or to disagree, for if you disagree we would ask that you would leave behind those thoughts. And if you agree, then we would ask that you would simply make those thoughts part of your own resources and tools, always subject to the moving rhythms of learning and experience, for personal truth is both clear and moving. There are journeys to take in this seeking of truth, ways of going that develop and lead to other levels, other facets of that infinite mystery that is Love.
This instrument finds it amusing that one of the cats that is a denizen of this house has chosen this moment to begin to snore. We hope that that is not in reaction to our words, but we cannot be sure. At any rate, we find it humorous, for we are not proud, and we take pride in that. We seek to be humble, and we know that we may be speaking complete nonsense to any of your ears, and if that is the way that it comes out, that is fine with us, that is what we wish to say. For you are the arbiter that is important to you. It is your judgment that counts and no one else’s. No authority. No book. No person. For within you is all that there is, and within you is a finely honed system of sense, the physical senses being but the beginning of those senses into which you may pour your attention and from which you derive the biases that distort your life in just the way that you live it. These biases and distortions are yours. No one else’s. You are unique.
We are aware that you wish to talk about spiritual pride, and we find that, as is often the case, when we are asked concerning a specific subject we need to move back into the generalities upon which we may base those opinions that we would share with you.
Let us look at this concern of pride. What is the general concept of pride? When someone is proud it is generally of some thing. A person may take pride in many things: his physical strength, her physical delicacy, the abundance of supply, or the lack of dependence upon supply, the work that one does, or the work that one will not do, the relationships that one has, or the barrier to relationships. In all these things one may take a certain pride, may say, “I feel that this is a strong point of my being. I feel I can be proud of this accomplishment, this relationship, this situation.” And there is nothing more distorted about pride than there is about the illusion in general. However, in general the illusion is very dense, and this illusion creates the distortion that it is what one does that is the avenue for pride, for feeling worthwhile. The conversation of strangers tends to begin in your culture with an examination of the work that each is accomplishing in order to make money or in order to express self. Whether the work is routine or creative, it is a starting point that people recognize in each other, the place of comfort where one can divulge something about the self and be receptive to hearing something trustably understandable from others. It is very awkward to go up to a stranger and say, “What sort of vibration do you have? What kind of being are you?” Entities tend not to take pride in who they are, in the being that they express moment to moment. So you may see all of spiritual pride as a thing basically one with mental and emotional pride and physical pride.
Now let us look at pride as [in] your religions, especially the Christianity, the Muslim, and the yogic systems. In those systems spiritual pride is considered a negative value. Why is that? It is assumed that if one is proud, then there is something that must be overcome in order for him to continue with his spiritual unfoldment and evolution. Perhaps the principle, the spine, shall we say, of reason for the mistrust of pride by spiritual systems is best illustrated in the little story within your Holy Bible wherein two men are described, one of whom has made it very obvious by the way that he is dressed, by the spiritual accouterment of his costume and the books that he holds, and beside him a beggar man with tattered clothing and dirty skin, an empty stomach, and a full awareness of his iniquity. While the rich and well-satisfied man is praying, “Oh Lord, I give more to the temple than anyone else. I fast three days a week. I pray without ceasing,” the beggar is saying over and over, “Lord, have mercy on me, a sinner.” Can you see the walls that have come up about this rich man, the wall of wealth, of dress, of possessions, and of actions? All of them offered in a sincere effort to be holy but offered as an accomplishment. These walls make it possible for this man not to realize that in addition to all of these things that he has done right, there remains a basic and intrinsic identity within the illusion which the rich man and the beggar share with total equality. And that is the human state. The human state itself is the basis of pride, for it seems to each human, without recourse to any physical evidence, that she is alone, that the walls of skin surround the self and cut it off from oneness with all else that there is.
To those who are not seeking spiritually, this may seem fairly obvious and not worth mentioning. Of course each entity is separate. Of course each entity is alone. Each has common concerns with others of like mind, but with physical eyes, physical senses, there is no question but that each entity is alone, apart from and over against other selves, outer situations in general, and the entire environment in which the entity dwells. It is instinct, the instinct of the physical body, that carries you about, that begins this discriminatory process. The infant slowly realizes that some of its needs will not be met. It begins to realize that some things can be hurtful and does not want to repeat experiences of pain. And so the walls begin to go up about the young heart. “Don’t touch the stove. Don’t pat the cat too hard. Don’t pick up the dog. Don’t. Don’t. Don’t.” As the child grows it learns how to defend the self. It experiments with ways of relating to other selves. And except in very unusual situations, by the time this entity is considered a mature adult by the surrounding society, this entity has become one to some extent controlled by fear.
We changed from pride to fear because the one known as J was asking which was the ultimate catalyst to be dealt with within third density. And we would respond in general that the only catalyst dealt with in third density is fear and love. The entity begins its babyhood wrapped in love, love known throughout its system, and it learns to close itself, to become apart, and to become defended because it seems fairly obvious that there are things to fear. There are entities and objects out there that can harm and hurt. So the spiritual life within third density may be described as either a learning how to love or a learning how to release fear, for fear is that distortion of love that posits a separation betwixt beings and things, thus occasioning the necessity of having some sort of response to these persons or things that will tend to increase safety and comfort.
We are not saying that these contents are incorrect, for the entity’s fears are real. There is that which is feared. It is an illusion. However, the illusion cannot be brutally penetrated and torn away, for that would also do harm to the developing self. Indeed, when one is working with one’s fears, attempting to see the love behind the apparent separation, the most nearly correct attitude is simply the slowing down of self, quieting the mind, stilling the emotion, until you are able to sit with whatever fear that is, not removing it harshly, but perhaps moving away strands from that tapestry in front of you, gradually making an opening through which you can see the light beyond.
We could picture the fear in one as [being] within a cave of safety with a good stout blanket over the hole of the cave to hold back those things of which they are afraid. If one rips away the blanket, then one must deal with all of the distortion at once. However, if one is satisfied to sit with and accept and be conscious of that particular fear that you are experiencing, then one may gently, gradually, with persistent effort, see a lightening of the burden, see a nearer and nearer distance to where that blanket has a place in it where one can go in and out and venture a step or two into that world beyond the cave.
Each of you has come to feel comfortable with imaging and ideating of the self as a spiritual being. Each of you is awake in a land where many slumber. And so to each of you there are special opportunities, both for service and for pain, and spiritual pride is a distortion which each seeker becomes aware of in a subtle way, over time. It is that which remains when the fears have been shaken up and the cave has been left. It is the distortion or fault peculiar to those who have worked the hardest to realize who they are, and where they are going, and whose they are. So let us look at the possible way to work with this dynamic of spiritual pride.
Within this instrument’s spiritual system, pride, like envy, greed, lust, sloth, is considered more of a vice than an actual sin, a kind of excess of a good thing. It is good to be humble, and yet one can justly be proud of one’s good works, one’s good habits, one’s ethics, one’s conduct. When one is attempting to do everything that one can to live a good and holy life, one is peculiarly apt to feel some pride in oneself. Now can you see how that feeling is a separator between the self and the world about the self? It is based upon the assumption, which is an illusion, that one is responsible for the self and at the base of the self, one is oneself. This is a sticky, sticky point and we would ask you to look closely at this matter of identity, for as long as there is self there will be pride in self or a feeling about self that does separate one from other. If one is still thinking that one is still living one’s own life, one is not yet beyond spiritual pride. This instrument is aware that she is not beyond spiritual pride and has often said that this is the one vice that she cannot find a way to remove from her personality, for even though she attempts to work on her humility she has a pride of self that thinks self is right. There is a righteousness there. There is an inherent lack of eagerness to taste other souls’ flavors. There is a desire to retain some boundaries, some uniqueness of self, which is completely understandable in an illusion where there is no way to discover in any way that can be proven that one is not separate, that one is not, at base, oneself. And yet we say to you that as far as we know, at base there is only the one great Self, that Love which is reflected in each of the Creator’s children, which each of you is.
As long as you think that you have a self that you need to defend you shall be working with spiritual pride, and so entities for the most part are working with this no matter how persistently and purely and devotionally they have sought year after year, yet still there is the sense of “I” am searching. “I” am looking. “I” am seeking to become the best that “I” can. Conversely, we have found that coming into a fuller awareness of self is actually a process of subtraction, simplification and elimination of things from the defended self until finally the self is empty and the barriers are down. Is this safe to do within your density? No. Not at all, not in the sense of the preservation of the physical body, the emotional body, or the spiritual body within incarnation.
What we are trying to say is that it is not a terrible thing to be working with pride or in general to be working with one’s fear. This is part of what one is doing in this illusion. This is what you are supposed to be doing. This is your subject matter: fear and love. Boundaries and unity. Each time this instrument tunes she repeats a prayer that we would like to repeat at this time. “Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is discord, union. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. Where there is sadness, joy. Oh, divine Master, teach us to seek not so much to be loved, as to love. Not so much to be consoled, as to console.” And this instrument often says, “Not so much to be controlling, but to allow control. For it is in pardoning that we are pardoned. It is in giving that we receive. It is in dying that we rise to eternal life.” Do you see the imagery of this prayer? The darkness that separates. The light that joins. The hatred that separates. The love that unites. This Prayer of St. Francis is the outcry of the soul who wishes to be free of self and subsumed into the service of the infinite mystery that it worships and adores.
And this is the door that opens into a larger and less fear-filled view of living within the illusion, this realization that there are different ways to look at each situation, that it is not terrible to have faults or to have sins or to have pride about the good things and fear about the bad things. That one is intended to be very confused by this illusion. That there is positive value in this confusion in that it, and it alone, tear most people away from those things that they cling to in fear.
You are attempting to set yourself free of an illusion, and yet within you there lies the self that is completely free, and often this instrument will recommend to people that instead of working intellectually upon some perceived problem that the person simply visualize a perfect state that is the actual truth of the situation. In truth, all is love. In truth, all is perfect now, this instant, just as it is. For there is no time or space. This is an illusion. This is the stuff of the illusion. And each of us upon our journey are illusions also. And yet unique and wonderful beings, beloved of the Creator and persisting through octaves and octaves of creation to infinity, as those very sparks that learn again and again more and more as the creation’s heartbeat pulses and universes live and die and other universes are born.
It is easy to think of the spiritual life as a kind of school out of which one shall one day graduate, and certainly within the illusion of time life is graduated by larger life. There is a periodicity to things. Then for that universe in the fullness of that system of illusions, all the sparks of the Creator will have completed their journey and lost themselves within the Creator again. And all comes together in that universe at that time in an unimaginable ending of illusion into nothingness. For when there is no one to perceive, what is there but the Creator? And then the Creator dreams again and a universe is born, and the sparks are sent out again to learn more. And so you are all on a journey that the Creator is fascinated with. You cannot do anything that will turn the Creator against you, for the Creator loves all that It has made with an unimaginable fervor and absolute tenacity and embraces each spark with a love so profound and so great that it cannot be expressed.
We recommend to each the Prayer of St. Francis. When working with fear and working with pride and working with any perceived distortion that keeps one from that tuning that is the truest and the highest of the self the remembrance that there are always ways of perceiving things that change your choices and options is a tremendous tool. Simply remembering that you can explore any situation for alternate ways of perceiving it, for alternate patterns into which to put it is a great resource. We encourage each to go ahead and be proud and to know that that is a distortion that is not particularly service-to-others oriented. And so you shall work with it as you shall work with all you perceive false, and yet you shall remain human and error-prone, as we are error-prone. But beneath the time and space, the incarnation and the concerns of the incarnation, there abides a well of being that is infinite within you, an identity which creates unity with all that there is. And those moments when one is lost in communion with the source and ending of all things are moments of blessing and healing where there is no distortion, for time and space have flown away and you are tabernacling with the Most High.
The next time that you experience the catalyst of feeling that you are yet an incomplete spiritual being, remember the truth of subtracting, of dropping away that which is not. And as you experience those realizations that enable you to drop a part of the ego away, rejoice. You cannot make it happen. You cannot rush it. But there come moments and you perceive that you no longer have that pride or that particular fear. And of that you may be proud and happy, and if that is a distortion also, then so be it. For you are not here to go beyond distortion but to live within distortion by faith, to express within this confusion a trust in the plan that placed you here, a trust in the destiny that is absolutely yours. A feeling that cannot come from proof or words that all that is yours will come to you and that you do not need to reach but only ask “Thy will for me today. What is it? And I will try my best.” That is all that you must do. So do not give up upon the self because it continues to have distortions and confusions. That is all right. You are not supposed to be without illusion. Ah, precious incarnation. If we could but share with you the opportunity that is now yours. If we could share that perception with you fully you would jump for joy. You would rejoice most fully and heartily, for here is the place where you choose by faith alone, and this choice, this expression of faith, however imperfect, creates within that permanent self which is beyond space and time tremendous changes in consciousness which you cannot achieve outside of this third density of yours. For in other densities the veil of knowing is lifted and what virtue is it then to realize that you are your brother and that all those things your brother has are you? There is no virtue in perceiving the color red if your eyes are open. But, ah, with the eyes closed, here you are in a world of color with your eyes closed. For you are in the equivalent of a black and white movie. You are up there on the screen watching yourself. The pigment of the movie screen is grainy, and some of the voices are distorted, and it’s kind of a corny story, and it’s over too soon. But, ah, when you come out of the theater into the light and you look back on that black and white movie and you see the hope and the faith and the caring and the love and the compassion that you truly have had, with no reason for it but just that constant desire for love, to know love, to know the truth, to express that love. Each of you is a gallant, gallant soul and we both envy you and honor you, for you do much that you do not know; even as you suffer, you heal worlds.
So be content. That is what we would say to you. Be content, and simply look carefully, and more carefully, and with opener and opener eyes at all that there is about you. And see into things as you can, as you are able, as you are given grace, remembering who you are, remembering in whose service you are and letting yourself be yourself, for that is a wonderful and special thing. Each of you are very beautiful.
We would apologize for our wordiness upon this subject but we feel that this concern is a very deep one and wish to probe into it somewhat. We thank each once again and would leave this instrument in love and light, transferring to the instrument known as Jim. We are those of Q’uo.
[No questions asked.]