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In a discussion group the other day someone asked “Is there any one thing we can do on a daily basis, besides meditation, that will help us grow spiritually?” I felt into the question for a moment and the answer quickly floated into my awareness from my core: neutrality. “Yes. Practice neutrality,” I answered.

In truth, all wisdom, all inner knowing that we seek, emerges from our alignment with our spiritual core. And it is the practice of neutrality that takes us there. Neutrality naturally and effortlessly aligns our awareness/consciousness with a column of golden-white light that exists in our subtle body, or energy body. In Sanskrit it is called the shushumna, and it sits just in front of the physical spine and parallel to it, extending from head to toe and beyond – to the center of the galaxy above, as well as to the earth below. It is the gateway to higher consciousness and to the wisdom that exists outside of ego and our egoic limitations.

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So it is through the practice of neutrality throughout our day, moment to moment, that silences the egoic mind with its desires and fears, its likes and dislikes, and allows our awareness to come to rest. Peace, balance, equanimity, trust, faith, and more are the states of being that we find there.

What does it mean to be neutral…practically? How do we do neutrality? As my teacher often says, to be neutral is to be neither attracted to or repulsed by anything. With our Observer as our viewing point we watch the inevitable dramas of life play out, noticing our reactivity, noticing if and how we are pushed and pulled by our thoughts and emotions. Can we hold the higher mind and simply watch what is unfolding without identifying with it? If emotion is present can we allow it to be there without being pulled into reactivity? This is neutrality and the doorway into the peace at our core in the shushumna. By resting here more and more our consciousness will ascend.

Awhile back I was on the phone and verbally assaulted by someone. I was belittled and shamed and essentially told (with many more hateful words!) that I was incompetent and worthless. When I reminded this person that their unhappiness came from the choices they have made in life and not from me, they hung up the phone! Throughout the call I was able to witness the barrage from the higher neutral mind and see that these accusations were projections coming for this person’s inner pain and disconnect. My immediate internal response was forgiveness. That said, my emotional body felt shattered, as you might guess, after such a violent assault. My reaction was to breath deeply to allow the charged energy to dissipate and to go for a brisk walk.

Do you see how I was able to remain neutral, even while my emotional body was activated? If my response had been to go into anger and blame and verbally retaliate in some way, I would have lost my neutral observer. I would have been identified with the story, and by taking a side or a position I would have created a relationship of polarity with “the other”. I would have been in egoic consciousness and had a personal issue to process and clear.

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NeutraltySo by making a commitment to neutrality, putting it into practice as best we can, and processing our shortcomings we strengthen our neutral observer overtime. We begin to spend more time in our core state and with the peace and balance that we find there. Our ascension in consciousness begins and grows from here.

Paul, a student (not his real name), asked “why is it I get in so many car accidents?” After a bit of self-inquiry he was able to name how he has a habit of identifying himself as a victim as he goes through life. We could say he holds the energy of victimhood in his consciousness, and that this energy lives as an energetic field or aura that inhabits and surrounds his physical body. Through the spiritual law of attraction this field acts like a magnet drawing to him people and situations (car accidents!) that victimize him.

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I explained that if he were to clear his aura of this victimization energy his life would smooth out greatly. As we dug a little deeper he also noticed that, although he spends most of his time being a victim in life, he can also act out its opposite sometimes. He saw how, when push comes to shove, he can also be a dominator or a perpetrator (the energy of the Tyrant)!

Duality is the operating system that runs consciousness for most of us in the world right now. It is a consciousness divided, and it plays out in our minds and emotions and, in extreme cases, in our physical world as dance of opposites, or polarity. Although Paul identifies primarily with the victim, he was beginning to see how he flip-flops from being a victim to being a tyrant, depending on the situation on any given day. Victim and tyrant, in fact, all polarities, are inextricably bound to one another!

Spiritual law says that any polarized state of mind will in time turn into its opposite; we cannot have one without the other… When Paul is in victim mode this energy dominates his reality, and that’s all he can see. He feels small, inconsequential, needy and deprived. But his tyrant didn’t go anywhere! This character is just not conscious to him, and what is not in the conscious mind lives in the unconscious. Similarly, when Paul is acting out his tyrant energy, his victimhood lies unseen in his unconscious, nevertheless always present and eager to resume its starring role in his life’s movie!

The underlying energy that upholds and sustains the tyrant/victim construct in our minds is the energy of power vs. powerlessness, and like all polarities held in the mind, it is inherently unstable. So, as good as it feels to Paul’s ego to feel powerful, in control, and able to assert its will, it won’t last. Inevitably, tyrants become victims! On the world stage, they’re all too familiar: Look no further than Hitler or, more recently, Saddam Hussein; then there is Mubarak in Egypt, a tyrant to his people for thirty years. Now he sits in a jail with a sentence of life imprisonment; and we all know the fate of Osama bin Laden!

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Because Paul is committed to growing his consciousness and  living his life from a place of balance, equanimity and inner peace, he must be willing to give up both his inner tyrant and his inner victim. Through a process of self-inquiry Paul’s work is to begin to name and own all of the ways he plays the tyrant and the victim, and to free himself of the exhausting and perpetual dance between them. He needs to make what is unconscious to him conscious, and then be willing to hang up his dancing shoes! He must make a bid for true power by surrendering both aspects of ego. Here is where grace will take over if he asks. In fact, it is the essential piece that will create an integration.

Paul’s consciousness with this polarity is boxed in by the seen and unseen attractions and repulsions he holds around it. I asked Paul to create four lists: 1. Why I desire to be a victim 2. Why I fear becoming a victim 3. Why I desire to be tyrant 4. Why I fear becoming a tyrant. What Paul will discover is that he spends some indefinite amount of time with the consciousness of each of his four lists before he inevitably flips to the state of mind of the next list, and the next, and so on in a never-ending loop of desires and fears.

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His flip-flopping consciousness between victim and tyrant is keeping him in a spin of opposites, manifesting adversity in his life and from the peace of mind that he seeks. By feeling deeply into and naming all of his desires and fears around being a victim and being a tyrant, and then surrendering them all back to Source, he will move into greater balance and equanimity with this polarity. And if he continues to scrupulously examine and release even the most subtle ways that he engages these self-defeating personas, he can be free of them. No more victims or tyrants need ruin his day!

How about you? Are you ready to give up the struggle between your victim and your tyrant? Your inner peace and true power await you there beyond all polarity…

I’ll meet you there!