In this article we will begin a nine part series on the emotions. In the last nine articles we focused more on the levels of the mind and the psychological, reasoning and intellectual aspects of consciousness. Now we focus on emotion and feelings.
We will begin in this article with a discussion of emotions and the repression of emotions. In the next several articles we will focus on certain specific emotional states in order to better understand how emotions, along with thoughts and beliefs, create the reality we experience.
Spirit Joined with Flesh
“Your spirit joined itself with flesh, and in flesh, to experience a world of incredible richness, to help create a dimension of reality of colors and of form.
Your spirit was born in flesh to enrich a marvelous area of sense awareness, to feel energy made into corporeal form.
You are here to use, enjoy, and express yourself through the body.
You are here to aid in the great expansion of consciousness.
You are not here to cry about the miseries of the human condition, but to change them when you find them not to your liking through the joy, strength, and vitality that is within you; to create the spirit as faithfully and beautifully as you can in flesh.
You make your own reality. I cannot say this too often.
Believe then, that you are a being unlimited by nature, born into flesh to materialize as best you can the great joy and spontaneity of your nature.”1
“All consciousness creates the world, rising out of feeling-tone. It is a natural product of what your consciousness is.
Feelings and emotions emerge into reality in certain specific ways. Thoughts appear, growing on the bed already laid.
Basically you create your experience through your beliefs about yourself and the nature of reality.
Another way to understand this is to realize that you create your experiences through your expectations.
Your feeling-tones are your emotional attitudes towards yourself and life in general, and these generally govern the large areas of experience.
They give the overall emotional coloration that characterizes what happens to you.
Your emotional feelings are often transitory, but beneath there are certain qualities of feeling uniquely your own, that are like deep musical chords.
While your day-to-day feelings may rise or fall, these characteristic feeling-tones lie beneath.
Sometimes they rise to the surface, but in great long rhythms.
You cannot call these negative or positive. They are instead tones of your being. They represent the most inner portion of your experience.
This does not mean that they are hidden from you, or are meant to be. It simply means that they represent the core from which you form your experience.
If you have become afraid of emotions or the expression of feelings, or if you have been taught that the inner self is no more than a repository of uncivilized impulses, then you may have the habit of denying this deep rhythm.
You may try to operate as if it did not exist, or even try to refute it. But it represents your deepest, most creative impulses; to fight against it is like trying to swim upstream against a strong current.
These feeling-tones pervade your being. They are the form your spirit takes when combined with flesh. From them, from their core, your flesh arises.
The feeling-tone then is the motion and fiber – the timbre – the portion of your energy devoted to your physical experience.
Now, it flows into what you are as a physical being and materializes you in the world of seasons, space, flesh, and time. Its source, however, is quite independent of the world that you know.
Once you learn to get the feeling of your own inner tone, then you are aware of its power, strength and durability, and you can to some extent ride with it into deeper realities of experience.
The incredible emotional richness and variety and splendor of physical experience is the material reflection of this inner feeling-tone.
It pervades the events in your life, the overall inner direction, the quality of perception.
It fills up and illuminates the individual aspects of your life, and largely determines the persuasive subjective climate in which you dwell.
It does not determine specific events. It paints the colors in the large “landscape” of your experience. It is the feeling of yourself, inexhaustible.
In other terms it represents the expression of yourself in pure energy, from which your individuality rises, the You of you, unmistakable given identity that is never duplicated.
This energy comes from the core of BEING, from All That Is and represents the source of never-ending vitality.
It is Being, Being in You. As such, all of the energy and power of Being is focused and reflected through you in the direction of your three-dimensional existence.
While your feeling-tone is uniquely yours, still it is expressed in a certain fashion that is shared by all consciousnesses focused in physical reality.”2
“No feeling brings you to a dead end.
It is in motion, and that always leads into another feeling.
As it flows it alters your entire physical condition, and that interchange is meant to be consciously accepted.
Your emotions will always lead you into a realization of your beliefs if you do not impede them.
Emotional states are always impetuses for action, meant to be physically expressed.
You are at the mercy of your emotions only when you fear them. They are the motion of your being. They go hand in hand with your intellect.
You must accept the validity of your feelings while realizing that they are about certain issues or conditions and are not necessarily factual statements of your reality.
While feelings have their own integrity as emotions, they may not be statement of fact.”3
Emotions Follow Beliefs
“Your emotions and your imagination both follow your belief.
When the belief vanishes then the same emotional context is no longer entertained, and your imagination turns in other directions.
Beliefs automatically mobilize your emotional and imaginative powers.
Your beliefs generate emotion.
Conscious reasoning and emotions go together but your conscious thinking largely determines your emotions, and not the other way around.
Your beliefs generate the appropriate emotion that is implied.
A long period of inner depression does not just come upon you. Your emotions do not betray you. Instead, over a period of time you have been consciously entertaining negative beliefs that then generated the strong feelings of despondency.
You are not at the mercy of your emotions, for they are meant to follow the flow of your reasoning.
Your mind is meant to perceive the physical environment clearly, and its judgments about the environment then activate the body’s mechanisms to bring about proper response.
If your beliefs about existence are fearful, then the emotional reactions will be those leading to stress. Your own value judgments need examination in such a case.
Your imagination of course follows your emotions, and it also follows your beliefs faithfully.
As you think so you feel, and not the other way around.
The nature of your personal beliefs in a large measure directs the kinds of emotions you will have at any given time.
You will feel aggressive, happy, despairing, or determined according to events that happen to you, your beliefs about yourself in relation to them, and your ideas of who and what you are.
You will not understand your emotions unless you know your beliefs.
It will seem to you that you feel aggressive or upset without reason, or that your feelings sweep down upon you without cause if you do not learn to listen to the beliefs within your own conscious mind, for they generate their own emotions.”4
Imagination & Emotions
“Imagination and emotions are the most concentrated forms of energy that you possess as physical creatures.
Any strong emotion carries within it far more energy than, say, that required to send a rocket to the moon.
Emotions, instead of propelling a physical rocket, for example, send thought from this interior reality through the barrier between nonphysical and physical into the “objective” world – no small feat, and one that is constantly repeated.”5
Schools of Positive Thinking
“Psychology, religion, science – in one way or another, all of these have added to the confusion by stripping the conscious mind of its directing qualities, and viewing it as a stepchild of the self.
The schools of “positive thinking” try to remedy the situation, but often do more harm than good because they attempt to force beliefs upon you that you would like to hold, but do not in your present state of confusion.
Many such philosophies make you cower at the idea of entertaining “negative” thoughts or emotions.
In all cases the clues to your emotional experience and behavior lie in your systems of belief; some more evident to you than others, but all available to you consciously.
If you believe that you are of little merit, inferior and filled with guilt, then you may react in several ways according to your personal background and the framework in which you accepted those beliefs.
You may be terrified of aggressive feelings because it seems others so much more powerful than you could retaliate.
If you believe that all such thoughts are wrong you will inhibit them and feel all the more guilty – which will generate aggressiveness against yourself and further deepen your sense of unworthiness.
Now if you read a book in your situation that instructs you to contemplate goodness, to turn your thoughts immediately to love and light when you feel irritated, you are in for trouble.
Such practices will only serve to make you more frightened of your natural emotions.
You will not understand why you have them any better than you did before. You may only hide them more cleverly, and perhaps become ill if, given the situation, you are not already.
The harder you try to be “good” in such a case the more inferior you will become in your own mind.
What do you think of yourself, your daily life, your body, your relationship with others?
Ask yourself these questions. Write down the answers or speak them into a recorder. But in one way or another objectify them.
When you feel the rise of unpleasant emotions, take a moment and make an effort to identify their source.
The answers are far more available than you may have previously believed. Accept such feelings as your own in the moment. Do not shove them underneath, ignore them or try to substitute what you think of as good thoughts.”6
Trying to Be “Good” and “Happy” all the Time
“You cannot will yourself to be happy while believing that you have no right to happiness, or that you are unworthy of it.
You cannot tell yourself to release aggressive thoughts if you think it is wrong to free them, so you must come to grips with your beliefs in all instances.
If you have been told that the spirit is good, in fact perfect, and that you must then be perfect in all of your ways, while at the same time you believe in the imperfection of the body, you will always be in conflict with yourself.
If it seems to you that the soul is degraded by its alliance with the flesh, then you will not be able to enjoy your own sense of grace, for you will not consider it possible.
Your beliefs will dictate your very interpretation of various kinds of emotions.
You may believe that good mental health means being always cheerful, resolute, and kind, and never crying or showing disappointment.
That belief alone can lead you to deny quite natural dimensions of human experience, and to impede the flow of emotions that could otherwise cleanse both your body and your mind.
If you are convinced that feelings are dangerous, then again that belief itself will generate a fear of all of them, and you may become almost panic-stricken if you display anything but the most “reasonable” calm behavior.
Your emotions then may strike you as highly unpredictable, extremely powerful, and to be kept down at all cost.
Such an attempt to strangle natural feeling is bound to take its toll, but it is the belief itself that is to blame, and not the emotions.
Any of the conditions mentioned puts you out of touch with your inner sense of balance.
The natural grace of your being becomes disturbed.
Often those who try the hardest to be “good” do so because they fear for their basic worth, and those who speak of having youthful minds and bodies do so because they are so terrified of age.
In the same way, many who shout about independence are afraid that they are basically helpless.
In most instances these opposing beliefs are held quite consciously, but kept apart from each other. Therefore they are not reconciled.
Since your feelings follow your beliefs, various groups of them will appear to be senseless at times if you do not allow them free connection with opposing ideas that you may also hold.”7
Negative Thoughts and Emotions
“Each individual will have a slightly different definition for “negative” emotions.
One person may find sexually stimulating thought delightful and a most enjoyable kind of diversion.
Another may consider them impure, bad, unhealthy, or otherwise disadvantageous.
Some individuals can with ease and exuberance imagine themselves in a fistfight, a brawl, unmercifully beating “the devil” out of an adversary.
The same thoughts may fill another man with intense terror and grave feelings of guilt.
This same man, however, who would not purposely entertain fantasies of such nature under normal conditions, may in time of war imagine himself killing the enemy with the greatest feelings of holy joy and righteousness.
Your systems of belief will of course attract certain kinds of thoughts, with their trails of emotional experience.
A steady barrage of hateful, revengeful thoughts should actually lead you to look for the beliefs from which they are gaining their strength.
You cannot do this by ignoring the validity of the thoughts as your experience, however, by trying to shove them under the rug of a superficial optimism.
Such habitual unhappy thoughts will bring about the same kind of physical experience, but it is your own system of beliefs that you must examine.
The “negative” subjective and objective events that you meet are meant to make you examine the content of your own conscious mind.
In their way the hateful or revengeful thoughts are natural therapeutic devices, for if you follow them, accepting them with their own validity as feelings, they will automatically lead you beyond themselves; they will change into other feelings, carrying you from hatred into what may seem to be the quicksands of fear – which is always behind hatred.
By going along with feelings you unify your emotional, mental and bodily state.
When you try to fight or deny them, you divorce yourself from the reality of your being.
Dealing with thoughts and feelings as just directed at least roots you firmly in the integrity of your present experience, and allows its innate motion and natural creativity to thrust toward a therapeutic solution.”8
Fear & Suppression of Negative Thoughts & Emotions
“In the present system of societal beliefs, and with the dubious light in which the unconscious is considered, a fear of the emotions is often generated.
Not only are they often hindered in waking life, then, but censored as much as possible in dreams.
Their expression becomes very difficult; great blockages of energy occur, which in your terms can result in neurotic or even stronger, psychotic behavior.
When you refute such emotions or become terrified of them, you impede the flow of feeling from one moment to the other. You set up dams.
Any emotion will change into another if you experience it honestly.
Otherwise you clog the natural movement of your entire system.
Fear, faced, and felt with its bodily sensations and the thoughts that go along with it, will automatically bring about its own state of resolution.
The conscious system of beliefs behind the impediment will be illuminated, and you will realize that you feel a certain way because you believe an idea that causes and justifies such a reaction.
If you habitually deny the expression of any emotions, to that degree you become alienated not only from your body but from your conscious ideas.
You will bury certain thoughts and put up biological armor to prevent you from physically feeling their effects upon your body.
In each case the answer lies in your personal system of beliefs, in those strong concepts you hold on an intimate level that brought about the inhibitions to begin with.
If you find yourself running around in a spiritual frenzy, trying to repress every negative idea that comes into your head, then ask yourself why you believe so in the great destructive power of your slightest “negative” thought.
The body and mind together do present a united, self-regulating, healing, self-clearing system.
Within it each problem contains its own solution if it is honestly faced.
Each symptom, mental or physical, is a clue to the resolution of the conflict behind it, and contains within it the seeds of its own healing.
You are at the mercy of your emotions only when you fear them. They are the motion of your being. They go hand in hand with your intellect.”9
Repression of Emotions can lead to Mental and Physical Disease
“If its built-in instincts are left alone the body is basically self-regulating.
It does not kill off all red blood cells if there are too many of them at a given time. It has better sense.
But in your fear of negative thoughts you often attempt to deny all your normal aggressiveness, and at the first glimpse of it bring up your mental antibodies prepared for action.
In so doing you try to repudiate the validity of your own experience.
If you do not feel your individual reality, then you can never realize that you form it, and so can change it.
It is this denial of experience, and the energy blockages involved, that build up the accumulation of unnecessary “unnatural” guilt.
The body itself cannot understand these blocked messages, and cries out to express its own corporeal knowledge of the moment as it experiences it.
You mentally shout in such situations that you do not feel what you feel.
Over a period of time the conscious mind, because of its position, can override the body’s messages.
Yet the backed-up accumulation of energy will seek outlet.
The smallest, most innocent symbol for the repressed material may then bring about behavior on your part that seems out of all proportion to the stimulus.
If you cut your finger it bleeds. In so doing the blood clears away any poisons that may have entered.
The bleeding is beneficial and the body knows when to stop it. If the flow continued it would be wrong or detrimental in your terms, but the body would not think the blood was bad because it continued its course of action.
It would not attempt to cut off all blood, considering it evil. It would instead make whatever adjustments were necessary to bring the emission to a natural halt.
When you consider aggressive thoughts wrong, using this analogy, you do not even begin to allow the system to clear itself. Instead you shut up the “poisons” inside.
As an accumulation would occur in the flesh, so the same thing might happen in your mental experience.
Physically you could end up with a very serious condition; and mental and emotional clamping down on natural forces can result in “diseased” idea structures that are isolated from other more healthy concepts.
These can be like growths – not lacking oxygen, for example, but free access and flow with other portions of your conscious experience.
Many energy blockages will be found in areas which you strongly repress your thoughts.
For now consider this blocked energy.
Consciously, most people are already afraid of it – they did not repress it because they considered it good.
The inhibition of such emotions also interferes with the nervous system and its therapeutic devices.
These repressed emotions, and the whole charge behind such distorted concepts about the unconscious, result in a projection outward upon others.
In your individual areas there will be persons upon whom you will project all of these charged, frightening emotions or characteristics.
At the same time you will be drawn to those individuals because the projections represent a part of you.
On a national basis the characteristics or qualities will be projected outward onto an enemy.
Within a nation they can be directed against those of a particular race, creed, or color.
When I use the word “repressed” I do not mean forgotten, or shoved into the unconscious, or beyond reach.
You may pretend that such material is hidden but it is quite within your conscious awareness.
You have only to honestly look for it and organize what you find.”10
Learning Not to Fear Your Emotions – Flowing with the Emotions
“You must accept the validity of your feelings while realizing that they are about certain issues or conditions and are not necessarily factual statements of your reality.
While feelings have their own integrity as emotions, they may not be statement of fact.
By recognizing these differences and honestly following the feelings through – in other words, by riding the emotions – you will be led to the beliefs behind them.
A series of self-revelations will inevitably result, each leading you to further creative psychological activity.
At each stage you will be closer to the reality of your experience than you have ever been.
The conscious mind will benefit greatly as it becomes more and more aware of its directing influence upon events.
It will no longer fear the emotions, or the body, as threatening or unpredictable, but sense the greater unity in which it is involved.
The emotions will not feel like stepchildren, with only the best-dressed being admitted.
They will not need to cry out for expression, for they will be fully admitted as members of the family of self.
Again, some of you will say that your trouble is that you are too emotional, too sensitive. You may believe that you are too easily swayed.
In such cases you are afraid of your emotions. You think their powers so strong that all reason can be drowned within in.
No matter how open it may seem that you are, you will nevertheless accept certain emotions that you think of as safe, and ignore others, or stop them at particular points because you are afraid of following them further.
When you allow your emotions their natural spontaneous flow they will never engulf you, and always return you refreshed to “logical” conscious-mind thought.
It is only when you dam them up that they appear to be opposed to the intellect, or overwhelming.
It is of the utmost importance, however, that you understand the power and directing nature of your conscious mind, for otherwise you will believe yourself to be forever at the mercy of conditions and situations over which you feel you have no control.”11
“Now: it is true that habitual thoughts of love, optimism and self-acceptance are better for you than their opposites; but again, your beliefs about yourself will automatically attract thoughts that are consistent with your ideas.”12
Become Aware of Your Feelings
“First be aware of the reality of your feelings.
As you become more aware of your beliefs over a period of time, you will see how they bring forth certain feelings automatically.
A man who is sure of himself is not angry at every slight done him, nor does he carry grudges. A man who fears for his own worth, however, is furious under such conditions.
The free flow of your emotions will always lead you back to your conscious beliefs if you do not impede them.
Your feelings always change the chemical balance of your body and alter its hormonal output, but the danger comes only when you refuse to face the contents of your conscious mind.
Even the intent to know yourself, to face the reality of your experience, can be of great benefit, generating emotions that will provide an energy, an impetus to begin.”13
Loving Your Emotions
“If you have a loving regard for yourself then you will trust in your own direction.
You will accept your present position, whatever it is, as being a part of that direction, and realize that from it can come all the creative elements that you need.
Being yourself and trusting in your own integrity, you will automatically help others.
It does little good to repeat a suggestion such as, “I am a worthy person. I trust myself and my integrity,” if at the same time you are afraid of your own emotions and become upset whenever you catch yourself in what you think of as a negative frame of mind.
What you think of as imperfections are instead gropings toward more complete becoming.
You cannot love yourself and hate the emotions that flow through you at the same time; because while you are not your emotions, you identify with them so often that in hating them you hate yourself.
It is very important then that you understand the true innocence of all feelings, for each of them, if left alone and followed, will lead you back to the reality of love.”14
- Roberts, Jane, The Nature of Personal Reality, Amber-Allen Publishing, 1974