Recently, I chatted with a friend about beliefs. We talked about all different kinds of beliefs, in particular religious beliefs and their consequences. But the really interesting portion of the conversation discussed inherited beliefs from our families.
“The biggest belief in my family is that worrying is important,” he said, chuckling.
I laughed. “Really? I knew worrying was a big deal in your family, but why? Why is it so important?”
“Because it means that you’re serious about something,” he replied.
“Really?” I was incredulous.
“Ya,” he laughed. “If there’s something I care about, I demonstrate the intensity of my care by worrying…worrying about someone traveling, worrying about getting a job, worrying about paying the bills…” he trailed off. “It’s really weird.”
“Huh,” I said. “That explains so much about some people I know. And…the funny thing is that that’s not the story my family tells about worrying. Worrying in my family is tied to failure and image in the community.”
He laughed, “What a trip! Is that your family’s biggest belief you’ve inherited?”
“No,” I replied. “I think the biggest belief, in my Dad’s family at least, is the belief that life is hard and anything worthwhile only comes through struggle.”
“Ya,” he said. “That’s a big one. If you’re not using your fingernails to get somewhere, you’re not going to get anywhere.”
I laughed then, and I’m still laughing at his description. All I can see in my head is a dude with really nubby fingernails clawing his way up the face of a rock cliff. And while I laugh, I realize this really isn’t a very pleasant existence.
Later, I meditated on this belief, looking for wisdom and insight…asking how to flip this belief to a life lived in abundance with ease, joy, and fun. Over the next few days I was reminded of a principle and illustration. And, today, with all the struggle that is coming up for some people it seemed like a good day to share those insights.
The illustration comes from Plato through a familiar story told by Socrates in The Republic. In this story, or Allegory of the Cave, Socrates describes a group of men who are bound by chains in a cave unable to see each other. Behind them burns a fire, casting shadows of other humans or objects on the wall in front of the men. Because these shadows are all that these men have ever seen, they believe that these shadows are the only reality…that they, and everyone and everything else are merely shadows without definition, color, or dimension. When one of the men is released, he moves toward the fire, then the light from the mouth of the cave. As he steps into the sunlight, the light is so intense he can hardly see. But gradually, he opens his eyes enough to look around. He soon realizes that what he’s seeing is nothing more than shadows and reflections of objects in an upper world. And, as his eyes continue to adjust, he finally is able to look up and sees the objects themselves.
This story of Plato and Socrates perfectly illustrates the principle “As above, so below.” But rarely have I heard the accompanying great teaching which is:
The work happens above and is reflected down.
This means that:
- My personality and existence in human form is a reflection.
- My struggle in human form is not as important as I have believed it to be.
- The real work and struggle (if necessary) happens in the “upper world” or in a higher dimension where the real me exists.
- Anything I do in the “upper world” is then reflected down to this dimension and I experience it in human form.
So, whatever belief you may be carrying around struggling and worthiness and value and being good enough, I invite you to consider the possibility that you may not have to work so hard here in this dimension…that struggle might not actually make you a better person or a more valuable person or a more desirable person. It might just make you a more miserable person.
If and when you’re ready, I invite you to let go of the struggle. Release the need to struggle. Surrender the responsibility to struggle to your Higher Self…the part of you that can shift and change quickly and easily. Then relax…simply live your life connected with your Higher Self. In this way, when your Higher Self shifts, that shift will be reflected down to you and your energy grids in this dimension. All you have to do is open to receive it, let it integrate, then carry on living. It’s that simple. No struggle…just reflection…which then creates a domino effect. For as you shift, grow, and evolve…at the level of your Higher Self…you shift the Universe.
And so it is.