The articles written by Community Members are a testament to their ability to reason through the ideas which help us to become a ‘Well Being’. When a Visitor to The Well Being Show chooses to have a ‘reading’ they are looking for insight and ideas to make their lives easier to negotiate. The old days of circus sideshows or crystal-balls on the pier are long gone. Today a Visitor can expect a real insight into their life and ways they can reflect upon their future. The critic needs to be careful, the modern reader is often degree qualified and many have a library of formal qualification counselling skills to draw upon.
As an example of the intelligence, knowledge and reasoning power look no further than Rose Best. Honours degree in Humanities and a list of professional counselling qualifications, used daily on a professional level. An amazing lady, it is a privilege to publish this article.
Faith Belief and Ego
A baby is born innocent with a minimum of survival instincts, they have five reflexes, grasp, turning their head for food, startle, primitive walking, turning their heads if placed on their tummy and lastly the Galant reflex which if the spine is stroked will arch showing neurological competency. Other than that, they rely on their senses to help them to connect to other human beings.
Gradually their senses begin to be evoked, loud noise, bangs, strange smells. bright lights and so on. New-born’s are egocentric, they demand and their needs are met, they have no concern about others points of view. As they begin to grow a balancing act begins to take place between nature & nurture, the baby develops a personality which reacts to the care they are given.
A cycle of action, reactions and actions begins to shape the baby’s connection to others. The baby begins to get a sense of self, they cry, demanding attention and begin to realise at a subconscious level that crying will eventually get some sort of response. Depending on how their needs are met, good or bad, some sort of reality begins to shape the baby’s world.
The response the parents or carers give to the baby’s crying will depend on a multitude of different things, how they have been brought up and personal experience of that upbringing, the community they live in, the country and the set of belief systems the country is governed by.
The web of experience and learning extends far, with each new experience learned or that which we are subjected to, the web extends further and further out ward. The web of experience and knowledge is never static, it evolves over millenniums of time, it is a constant flow of thoughts, action and reactions, happy and sad, liberating or restrictive, shaping us at every new turn. And yet we believe there is one truth as though it is fixed. There is no truth there is an ongoing expansion of consciousness which is for ever changing and which often becomes distorted.
There is a multitude of faith and belief systems which come from an established set of rules. The baby as an individual within any community, matures and shapes itself, for ever trying to fit in and live by the standards of the established belief system and forever trying to “be” something within it.
As a personal thought, I believe schools now days are setting unrealistic standards and tests. From personal experience, I have witnessed my grandchildren’s anxiety levels are going through the roof in an attempt to “fit in “ and be part of the perceived norm.
Parents have often tried extremely hard to prepare for their new-born’s birth, read books, listened to mid wives, family and have been told so many different ways about right way to do things. Parents think they should know how to bring up their child but they have a bumpy ride. Their “belief” is often that they should be this or that, they should have a job, should bring up their child in a particular way and then it goes wrong, they believe they have failed! They have a child who is naughty, ADH autistic etc. This is so not true in the majority of cases! Parents have just lost sight of their instinct, intuition, belief in self as a parent, plus the child has an unrealistic academic pressure which adds to the distorted sense of self, no wonder things go wrong!
Watching my lovely Irish Setter Poppy give birth to puppy’s, there were no words of wisdom, no books for her to read, she didn’t listen to me telling her what too do, she just acted on instinct, she muddled through, she ran off from them when she had enough but was never too far away when they were calling her. Her instinctive judgement was empirical, nothing made her lose faith or belief she just took instinctive action. There were no egos, the puppy’s needs were met but there was no right or wrong way, there was just instinctive action, no reaction to action other than instinctive
What makes humans different from animals, the spoken and more recently the written word and the underlying beliefs which are conveyed by them. I say more recently written word because prior to written word there was storytelling, within families, tribes, communities. Humans in ancient times connected without words, they used gestures which conveyed meaning even without words by facial expression or body language. There is much evidence of communication developing as seen on the Egyptian tombs and temples, the magnificent hieroglyphic and also the cave dwellers or shaman’s primitive pictorial communication, until eventually, the written word evolved.
Word then has power, it shapes belief. In ancient times written word was restricted to the scholars, rulers and rich.
“In ancient Palestine, writing was a restricted and expensive technology. Writing was controlled by the government and manipulated by the priests. Writing was seen as a gift from the gods. It was not used to canonize religious practice, but rather to engender religious awe. Writing was magical. It was powerful. It was the guarded knowledge of political and religious elites.
Biblical literature became a tool that legitimated and furthered the priests’ political and religious authority.”
Origins of the Written Bible
By William M. Schniedewind
We do not have empirical evidence of how the written rules evolved or from whom, there are numerous accounts, mainly of religious structure, which differ from country to country that became fact, establishing a set of rules to live by. A powerful tool it certainly was and still is, shaping and distorting our belief systems, bringing many wars then and still, to this day between the powerful elites. Faith or belief shapes a person in many different ways, it may be religious, a commitment to human rights, or another set of deeply-held beliefs which informs many of our life choices.
I do not dispute there needs to be some sort of order, or life would be chaos. Most of us have a faith in something, be it a higher power, or a belief system based in politics, psychology or sociology. Belief or faith give a powerful narrative to our lives and a sense of our place and significance in the world. They define who we are and influence our goals and motivations. However, faith can be a fragile thing, if our belief system is so strongly bound by others dictate and comes under attack, our core identity can be annihilated.
What happens when we lose faith or our belief? Often ego kicks in. Let’s return to the baby, the ego is a person’s sense of self-esteem or self-importance. The ego is the part of the mind that mediates between the conscious and the unconscious and is responsible for reality testing a sense of personal identity. It is the part of us that needs to feel special, it’s that part of us that seeks approval and by very definition, it is a part of us that feels lacking in some way.
For most individuals it is human nature to want to belong, to the family, friends, a chosen career, a community, our belief system connects and helps us fit in to the wider community. In his book, fear of freedom Eric Fromm outlines how the Germans conformed to the regime of Hitler by a powerful and magical twisted belief system and no matter how distorted or wrong that belief system was, they believed because the fear of standing alone far outweighed conforming to Hitler’s beliefs.
So, ego shapes us? I ask the question how far does it go for the individual; how far do we go to adopt the norms of the belief system thus denying self? For most, we go too far. Just imagine what it would be like to be to be free from the controls of ego, to be happy with who we are, no need to prove if we were right or wrong, just to follow our instinctive connection to the whole and trust the universe and be able to know and trust ourselves to take right action
Deepak Chopra is a renowned spiritual advisor, the author of many books which offer considered views about how we can give ourselves freedom, he says
“The ego does you a terrible disservice by throwing you into a world of opposites. Opposites always conflict — that’s the only way they know — and who can feel at home in the middle of a fight? It’s much easier to keep up the fight between good and evil, holy and profane, us and them. But as awareness grows, these opposites begin to calm down in their clashes, and something else emerges — a world you feel at home in. Awareness offers an alternative beyond the fray.”
Alternative & Complementary Medicine
My personal awareness is drawn to nature, a connection to the universe, we all breath the same air, the same rain touches our skin, we all drink from the main water source, we are all connected in some way. People are beginning to reconnect in a different way to that which we have learned where ego serves no purpose.
In psychological terms, the ego is the part of the psyche that experiences the outside world and reacts to it, coming between the primitive drives of the id and the demands of the social environment, represented by the superego. In layman’s terms ego means, personal struggle to maintain an identity, pride about oneself, thoughts such as my body and mind, my intellect, my life, my wealth, my partner and children, I should be this or that, the perfect parent, child partner, etc. “ I Should “ arises from ego alone.
For some people, this is changing, a spiritual awakening is beginning to stir. A great change in consciousness is sweeping among us, as we recognize that things are not what they have seemed to be, that there is more to life than meets the eye. Many of us are starting to question old belief’s and the rules we are governed by outmoded ways of seeing things and to move into a new way of being in the world. The beauty of living at this time is that even small actions have a powerful ripple effect, and the reverberations of what we do have the power to reach and open many minds.
We and we alone are in control of our own actions, we want others to change but are not prepared to change ourselves. Many of the clients I see are in poor relationships and want others to change. I say time and time again, they won’t change, change happens within you. When you and you alone can love yourself, no longer trying to please others your actions will change, then and only then will others reactions change towards you.
It not easy to take responsibility for our own actions but the more we learn to do this the more we can understand we alone are responsible for how we connect to the world and others. Our identity is who we are, be proud of it, we were not given the gift of life, to live it without free choice and free will, we were born to have experience and to make choices, not to be dictated to by others in order to prove our worth. You alone are responsible for your worth and if small changes start to come from within, the ripple effect happens. Just image if everyone took responsibility for their own actions, how the ripple effect could escalate to change the world.
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