[This text is an excerpt from the forthcoming book ‘Consciousness Sutras. Principles of Becoming Conscious’ by Ovidiu Brazdau, Transpersonal Press, UK, 2022]
TABLE OF CONTENTS
I. Conscious experience
II. Inner evolution drives
III. Developmental maps
IV. Transformative learning
V. Developmental challenges
VI. Discovery journeys
VII. Conscious evolution
The Consciousness Sutras are a compilation of principles describing conscious experience and inner evolution. They were developed to serve as an experiential guideline for psychologists, transformational counselors, life coaches, and people who are on transformational journeys, and want to know more about what and why is happening during inner evolution.
The sutras and the commentaries have been created using my previous researches included in Psychology of Becoming Conscious and Entheogenic Insights, available in the Becoming Conscious collection at www.consciousness-quotient.com/becoming-conscious. This text also includes previously unpublished research results, especially the conceptual meta-research undertaken for the development of the Consciousness Quotient concept and the CQ-i assessment tool. I am thankful to my family for their unconditional love and support, and to all the people who provided insights, support, inspiration and ideas for this research, including Sona Ahuja, Sperry Andrews, Carlo Monsanto, Cristian-Dan Opariuc, Valita Jones, Keith Fiveson, Sadhna Sharma, Jeff Warren, Jana Dixon, John Stewart, Alison Crosthwait, Les Fehmi, John Chavez, Raluca Ciobanu, Susanne Cook-Greuter, Terri O’Fallon, Walter Russell, Todd Duncan, Jack Semura, Anirban Bandyopadhyay, Mircea Steriade, Mae-Wan Ho, Marc Wittmann, Ken Wilber, Patanjali, Teresa of Avila, Milarepa, Nisargadatta Maharaj, Richard Maurice Bucke, Elaine Aron, Steve Bearman, Strephon-Kaplan Williams, Ion Mânzat, Kazimierz Dabrowski, Rick Hanson, Satprem and Sri Aurobindo, John Welwood, experts from the American Center for the Integration of Spiritually Transformative Experiences, Kaissa Puhakka, Richard Barrett, Christina and Stanislav Grof, Daniel Mackler, Roland Fischer, Winfried Schlee, John D. Boswell (Melodysheep), John Grinder, Daniel L. Everett, Tara Jenkins, Frederic Laloux, Janet Adler, Andrea Olsen, Scott Kiloby, ShantiMayi, Madalina Alexe, Tina Serban, Osho, Frank White, Mike Johnson, Simon Baron-Cohen, Paula Sager, Robert Forman, Dave Carmel, Stuart Hameroff, Deepak Chopra, John Rowan, Jayne Gackenbach, Charles Alexander, Jeffery Martin, Marcus Aurelius, Thomas Jordan, John Horgan, Ralph Metzner, Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner, Richard Alpert, Michael J. Winkelman, James Kent, Linda Silverman, David Lukoff, Jakko Sekkula, Gina Gheoca, Courtenay Young, John Weir Perry, Massimo Pregnolato, Ray Tomes, Daniel Yetman, Mir Demir, Jesse Prinz, Max Velmans, Fizixfan from Physics Forum, David Butler, Kendra Cherry, Alan Lomax, Hannah van Houcke, Swami Achyutanand, Lee Smolin, Heidi Newberg, Robert Epstein, Maureen Seaberg, Corina Serban, Cristian Constantin, Robert Monroe, Cornelia Cacu, Irina Filipache, Oana Badescu, Mihaela Marinas, Florin Munteanu, Altina Hripacov, Marinela Eftene, Oana de Lucia, Cristian Mihai, Filaret Sintion, Daniel David, Dragos Iliescu, Karin de Jager, Giorgiana Adam, Gina Hayden, Lavinia Nistor, Vaibhav Chauhan, Val Poultney, Melvin Vopson, Elena Lasconi, Mihaela Ciuchita, Gabriel Negulescu, Juan Negretti, Cristina Mirea, Florentina Gurau, Irina Ioana, Vlad Todica, Teodora Calin, Bernadette Blin, Vladimir Maykov, Cristina Mocanu, Irina Latis, Vladimir Mitran, Mirela Girea, Manuela Furdui, Cristina Maria Vasilescu, Teodor Scortan, Marian Citu, Catalin Munteanu, Oana Baluta, Heather Lonczak, Emanuel Carpus, Sean Blackwell, Stephanie Pizarro Coy, Aida Baumler, Leanne Whitney, Oana Gyarmath, Petrisor Tepurlui, Roxana Manac, Daiana Straulea, Anca Marangoci, John Drew, Diana Stan, Simona Stoicescu, Portal Hiro, Dan Oros, Dorothea Kafkula, George Petre, Loredana Dogariu, Iulia Sima, Horea Murgu, Cornelia Guja, Irina Holdevici, Maria Pop, Gregorian Bivolaru, Florin Curtui, Iolanda Mitrofan, Adrian Nuta, Leon Zagrean, Aurelia Moraru, Mihaela Sindie, Paul Morosanu, Bogdan Papacostea, Vasile Filip, Bianca Sandu, Irina Daniela Dragan, Maria Vasilescu, Devis Grebu, Dumitru Constantin-Dulcan, Felicia Traistariu, Marius Tudor, Simona Dobre, Christer Perjfell, Anamaria Zagrean, Alex Bazavan, Marius Luca, Rukmani Kaur, Sandra Pralong, Valentina de Piante, Sodjargal Ulambayar, Vlad Dogarescu, Blaise Templier, Ruxandra Gherghinescu, Edmond Cracsner, Tamara Barsanu, Irina Tanasescu, Emily Kell, Argentina Stoica, Gheorghe Pertea, Ion Radu-Tomsa, Cristina Constantinescu, Catalin Mihalache, Ana-Maria Petculescu, Elena Popa, Norina Gavan, Carmen Ivan, Eugen Banciu, Raluca Ionescu, Dane Hewlett, Ioana Pielescu, Mihaela Dencef, Mihaela Stroe, Raluca Mohora, Iosif Kalauz, Cristina Marginean, Bogdan Prajisteanu, Stefania Popescu, Ana-Maria Maier, Laura Matei, Claudiu Popa, Eduard Petrescu, Laurentiu Jiga, Mihnea Manu, Catalina Laschon, Barry Frey, Costin Juncu, Liviu Boitan, Gia Sfrija, Ovidiu Aleman, Andreea Udrescu, Adrian Moraru, Ovidiu Bataga, Bogdan Danciu, Ciprian Dimitriu, Cristina Bogdan, Claudiu Girniceanu, Cristiana Hurduc, Consuela Binder, Diana Butoeru, Diana Vasile, Virginia Ene, Laura Voinea, Dirk Hulsermann, Ciprian Leabu, Violeta Tanase, Mihai Bors, Arina Ureche, Dragos Stanca, Oana Cociasu, Catalin Chites, Bogdan Langa, Irina Macedonski, Rosemarie Anderson, Regina Hess, Liudmila Scortescu, Emilian Croitoru, Mihai Moldovan, Viorica Muntean, Marinela Fit, Lucian Savoiu, Alex Larionescu, Cristian Vasile, Irina Popescu, Silvia Murgescu, Fabio Freddi, Jenny Lynn, Sofia Dumitriu, Zoli Lorencz, Mariana Stancu, Alina Pachitanu, Cristina Garabetanu, Dan Barnos, Madalina Brull, Giuseppe Canale, Florin Bustiuc, Elia Cazan, Cristina Nedescu, Ank van Gulik, Alina Rudareanu, Carmina, Mihaela Costache, Cristina Chiran, Marius Pirvu, Elena Francisc, Luiza Dumitras, Florin Albu, Florin Cordis, Stefan Dragan, Geanina Carcei, Grigore Nicola, Olivia Setnescu, Ioan-Bradu Iamandescu, Felicia Erdely, Monica Tudor, Magda Lazar, Maria Timuc, Mihaela Spineanu, Ruxandra Toma, Marian Manolache, Ondi Vincze, Monica Tatoiu, Ovidiu Scridon, Simona Petreaca, Sorin Vintu, Iuliana Mergeani, Diana Mereu, Sheila Chandra, Liana Barnos, Liliana Timofan, Vladimir Aubin, Oana Stinga, Monica Burcea, Titi Tudorancea, Gheorghe Jurj, Filippo Caffettieri, Enrico Dassisti, Fiorenza Tallarico, Walter Menozzi and the Santo Daime community in Reggio Emilia (Italy), Dünya Aydoğdu, Rick Strassman, Robbert Bengt, Tina Kat Courtney, Ethan McIlhenny, Sarah Wu, Andrei Popic, Daniel Bucurescu, Ovidiu Gostian, Ela Radoi, Adrian Miu, Imagika Om, Ede Frecska, Simo Necic, Katie Mottram, the DMT-Nexus community, Kazuma Matoba, Vanessa Youness, Thierry Bogliolo, Joya Stevenson, the researchers from the Dayalbagh Educational Institute in Agra (India), my former students in Bucharest, and all the people who shared their researches and transformational experiences, in live discussions, or through books, blogs or video channels. My growth journey has been shaped and motivated not only by positive experiences, but also by the stressful entrepreneurial challenges in Romania, between 2005 and 2020. I am thankful for the support I received, and the rejections and failures that challenged me to go deeper within me, and learn to be truthful, compassionate, more flexible and adapt to life as it is. For this book, an easy-to-read citation style has been used for quotes from books or scientific papers. The quotes are referenced to the author’s webpage or other weblinks, where their work is described. For some sutras, the links in the references provide additional data regarding that topic.
Consciousness Sutras is a result of 28 years of explorations and research, and it was ignited by reading and trying to understand Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra, through practice. I thought a lot about what name to choose for this research. After compiling the text, I felt that Consciousness Sutras is an accurate description, as it incorporates and expands the pathways to inner freedom described in Yoga Sutra.
The sutras and the commentaries have been created using my previous researches included in Psychology of Becoming Conscious and Entheogenic Insights, available in the Becoming Conscious collection at www.consciousness-quotient.com/becoming-conscious. This text also includes previously unpublished research results, especially the conceptual meta-research undertaken for the development of the Consciousness Quotient concept and the CQ-i assessment tool.
I am thankful to my family for their unconditional love and support, and to all the people who provided insights, support, inspiration and ideas for this research, including Sona Ahuja, Sperry Andrews, Carlo Monsanto, Cristian-Dan Opariuc, Valita Jones, Keith Fiveson, Sadhna Sharma, Jeff Warren, Jana Dixon, John Stewart, Alison Crosthwait, Les Fehmi, John Chavez, Raluca Ciobanu, Susanne Cook-Greuter, Terri O’Fallon, Walter Russell, Todd Duncan, Jack Semura, Anirban Bandyopadhyay, Mircea Steriade, Mae-Wan Ho, Marc Wittmann, Ken Wilber, Patanjali, Teresa of Avila, Milarepa, Nisargadatta Maharaj, Richard Maurice Bucke, Elaine Aron, Steve Bearman, Strephon-Kaplan Williams, Ion Mânzat, Kazimierz Dabrowski, Rick Hanson, Satprem and Sri Aurobindo, John Welwood, experts from the American Center for the Integration of Spiritually Transformative Experiences, Kaissa Puhakka, Richard Barrett, Christina and Stanislav Grof, Daniel Mackler, Roland Fischer, Winfried Schlee, John D. Boswell (Melodysheep), John Grinder, Daniel L. Everett, Tara Jenkins, Frederic Laloux, Janet Adler, Andrea Olsen, Scott Kiloby, ShantiMayi, Madalina Alexe, Tina Serban, Osho, Frank White, Mike Johnson, Simon Baron-Cohen, Paula Sager, Robert Forman, Dave Carmel, Stuart Hameroff, Deepak Chopra, John Rowan, Jayne Gackenbach, Charles Alexander, Jeffery Martin, Marcus Aurelius, Thomas Jordan, John Horgan, Ralph Metzner, Timothy Leary, Ralph Metzner, Richard Alpert, Michael J. Winkelman, James Kent, Linda Silverman, David Lukoff, Jakko Sekkula, Gina Gheoca, Courtenay Young, John Weir Perry, Massimo Pregnolato, Ray Tomes, Daniel Yetman, Mir Demir, Jesse Prinz, Max Velmans, Fizixfan from Physics Forum, David Butler, Kendra Cherry, Alan Lomax, Hannah van Houcke, Swami Achyutanand, Lee Smolin, Heidi Newberg, Robert Epstein, Maureen Seaberg, Corina Serban, Cristian Constantin, Robert Monroe, Cornelia Cacu, Irina Filipache, Oana Badescu, Mihaela Marinas, Florin Munteanu, Altina Hripacov, Marinela Eftene, Oana de Lucia, Cristian Mihai, Filaret Sintion, Daniel David, Dragos Iliescu, Karin de Jager, Giorgiana Adam, Gina Hayden, Lavinia Nistor, Vaibhav Chauhan, Val Poultney, Melvin Vopson, Elena Lasconi, Mihaela Ciuchita, Gabriel Negulescu, Juan Negretti, Cristina Mirea, Florentina Gurau, Irina Ioana, Vlad Todica, Teodora Calin, Bernadette Blin, Vladimir Maykov, Cristina Mocanu, Irina Latis, Vladimir Mitran, Mirela Girea, Manuela Furdui, Cristina Maria Vasilescu, Teodor Scortan, Marian Citu, Catalin Munteanu, Oana Baluta, Heather Lonczak, Emanuel Carpus, Sean Blackwell, Stephanie Pizarro Coy, Aida Baumler, Leanne Whitney, Oana Gyarmath, Petrisor Tepurlui, Roxana Manac, Daiana Straulea, Anca Marangoci, John Drew, Diana Stan, Simona Stoicescu, Portal Hiro, Dan Oros, Dorothea Kafkula, George Petre, Loredana Dogariu, Iulia Sima, Horea Murgu, Cornelia Guja, Irina Holdevici, Maria Pop, Gregorian Bivolaru, Florin Curtui, Iolanda Mitrofan, Adrian Nuta, Leon Zagrean, Aurelia Moraru, Mihaela Sindie, Paul Morosanu, Bogdan Papacostea, Vasile Filip, Bianca Sandu, Irina Daniela Dragan, Maria Vasilescu, Devis Grebu, Dumitru Constantin-Dulcan, Felicia Traistariu, Marius Tudor, Simona Dobre, Christer Perjfell, Anamaria Zagrean, Alex Bazavan, Marius Luca, Rukmani Kaur, Sandra Pralong, Valentina de Piante, Sodjargal Ulambayar, Vlad Dogarescu, Blaise Templier, Ruxandra Gherghinescu, Edmond Cracsner, Tamara Barsanu, Irina Tanasescu, Emily Kell, Argentina Stoica, Gheorghe Pertea, Ion Radu-Tomsa, Cristina Constantinescu, Catalin Mihalache, Ana-Maria Petculescu, Elena Popa, Norina Gavan, Carmen Ivan, Eugen Banciu, Raluca Ionescu, Dane Hewlett, Ioana Pielescu, Mihaela Dencef, Mihaela Stroe, Raluca Mohora, Iosif Kalauz, Cristina Marginean, Bogdan Prajisteanu, Stefania Popescu, Ana-Maria Maier, Laura Matei, Claudiu Popa, Eduard Petrescu, Laurentiu Jiga, Mihnea Manu, Catalina Laschon, Barry Frey, Costin Juncu, Liviu Boitan, Gia Sfrija, Ovidiu Aleman, Andreea Udrescu, Adrian Moraru, Ovidiu Bataga, Bogdan Danciu, Ciprian Dimitriu, Cristina Bogdan, Claudiu Girniceanu, Cristiana Hurduc, Consuela Binder, Diana Butoeru, Diana Vasile, Virginia Ene, Laura Voinea, Dirk Hulsermann, Ciprian Leabu, Violeta Tanase, Mihai Bors, Arina Ureche, Dragos Stanca, Oana Cociasu, Catalin Chites, Bogdan Langa, Irina Macedonski, Rosemarie Anderson, Regina Hess, Liudmila Scortescu, Emilian Croitoru, Mihai Moldovan, Viorica Muntean, Marinela Fit, Lucian Savoiu, Alex Larionescu, Cristian Vasile, Irina Popescu, Silvia Murgescu, Fabio Freddi, Jenny Lynn, Sofia Dumitriu, Zoli Lorencz, Mariana Stancu, Alina Pachitanu, Cristina Garabetanu, Dan Barnos, Madalina Brull, Giuseppe Canale, Florin Bustiuc, Elia Cazan, Cristina Nedescu, Ank van Gulik, Alina Rudareanu, Carmina, Mihaela Costache, Cristina Chiran, Marius Pirvu, Elena Francisc, Luiza Dumitras, Florin Albu, Florin Cordis, Stefan Dragan, Geanina Carcei, Grigore Nicola, Olivia Setnescu, Ioan-Bradu Iamandescu, Felicia Erdely, Monica Tudor, Magda Lazar, Maria Timuc, Mihaela Spineanu, Ruxandra Toma, Marian Manolache, Ondi Vincze, Monica Tatoiu, Ovidiu Scridon, Simona Petreaca, Sorin Vintu, Iuliana Mergeani, Diana Mereu, Sheila Chandra, Liana Barnos, Liliana Timofan, Vladimir Aubin, Oana Stinga, Monica Burcea, Titi Tudorancea, Gheorghe Jurj, Filippo Caffettieri, Enrico Dassisti, Fiorenza Tallarico, Walter Menozzi and the Santo Daime community in Reggio Emilia (Italy), Dünya Aydoğdu, Rick Strassman, Robbert Bengt, Tina Kat Courtney, Ethan McIlhenny, Sarah Wu, Andrei Popic, Daniel Bucurescu, Ovidiu Gostian, Ela Radoi, Adrian Miu, Imagika Om, Ede Frecska, Simo Necic, Katie Mottram, the DMT-Nexus community, Kazuma Matoba, Vanessa Youness, Thierry Bogliolo, Joya Stevenson, the researchers from the Dayalbagh Educational Institute in Agra (India), my former students in Bucharest, and all the people who shared their researches and transformational experiences, in live discussions, or through books, blogs or video channels.
My growth journey has been shaped and motivated not only by positive experiences, but also by the stressful entrepreneurial challenges in Romania, between 2005 and 2020. I am thankful for the support I received, and the rejections and failures that challenged me to go deeper within me, and learn to be truthful, compassionate, more flexible and adapt to life as it is.
For this book, an easy-to-read citation style has been used for quotes from books or scientific papers. The quotes are referenced to the author’s webpage or other weblinks, where their work is described. For some sutras, the links in the references provide additional data regarding that topic.
How to read this text
The consciousness sutras clarify and describe the structure and the layers of conscious experience, their dynamics during inner evolution, and provide some methodologies for their exploration. The text includes various perspectives, some specific to later stages of ego development, and highly-experiential descriptions from a first-person perspective. Due to this complexity, some phrases may require more than one reading.
The sutras are intentionally essentialized using multiple perspectives, and have multiple meanings. You could take short pauses while reading, to reflect on how the collective mechanisms generate your personal conscious experience. If some ideas don’t make sense at first, please continue the reading, and allow your mind to slowly form the puzzle, until a coherent big picture emerges. Some pieces of the puzzle will reveal themselves later, after you understand why all the pieces are related to each other, and how they work together to create the conscious experience. Good journeys!
I. CONSCIOUS EXPERIENCE
1. Consciousness is a generic concept, an umbrella term, that describes the ability to experience life on multiple self-reflective levels. This guideline is focused on conscious experience, the subjective experience of being awake and alive.
2. The conscious experience is an outcome of the natural evolution of life. It provides the means to observe, self-reflect, and partially influence automatic behaviors and patterns, enhancing adaptability to life processes, and generating evolutionary diversity.
3. Conscious awareness is a complex process generated by the adaptive processing in our body, the cellular life and its energy, the electromagnetic, gravitational and other fundamental forces and processes, and their rhythmic balanced interchange.
4. The human body is interconnected through complex chemical and biological systems, and also through resonance chains on various frequencies. The resonance chains form synchronic nested networks that define the brain-body architecture.
5. The rhythmic balanced interchanges can coalesce in different combinations of frequencies, forming dynamic resonatory structures. These structures adapt the human body dynamics to life dynamics, through multi-frequency and multi-rhythmic adaptive processing. The resonatory adaptive processing is embedded in the architecture of the mechanical and electrochemical exchanges, developed by the 38 trillion cells that form the human body. Cognition, intelligence, and awareness are a glimpse of this multi-layered adaptive processing.
6. The adaptive processing develops in progressive steps, creating three types of awareness. The primary processing, from 20ms (milliseconds) to 100ms after the stimulus onset, generates basic awareness. The secondary processing, from 100ms to 300ms, creates pre-conscious awareness, and the tertiary processing, from 300ms to 600ms and beyond, generates conscious awareness through cognition.
7. Reflective self-awareness (‘mental presence’), involving cognition and perception of time, needs at least 2-3 seconds to evoke the nowness experience, the localizing of an event in time as happening ‘now’. On the other hand, through witnessing awareness, which requires a minimal cognition, humans could have a continuous ‘raw’ part of the conscious experience, subjectively felt as a fresh ‘being in the now’.
8. To be conscious means to have a degree of witnessing awareness and a degree of freedom of choice when thinking, feeling, sensing, and interacting with people and the environment. An essential element of the conscious experience is intentionality, which allows a person to choose deliberately what behavior to enact and what attitude to allow and select.
9. The witnessing awareness mode is a part of a meta-reflective intelligence system generated by the body’s adaptive processing. It is an evolutionary feature slowly developing in humans and other life forms, enhancing the conscious experience.
10. Witnessing is a fluid experience, a dynamic process, not a static ‘component’ of the conscious experience. It flows moment-to-moment. As life’s intelligence evolves, this perceptual ability also evolves, becoming richer and more complex.
11. Attention is the part of life’s intelligence that monitors and enhances the adaptive processing of stimuli from various sources, internal and external. While monitoring the global workspace of automatic processing, it selects the stimuli that have or need increased processing. After selection, it increases their processing through awareness and cognition, and the conscious experience related to the stimuli is being generated.
12. The conscious experience is enhanced by dividing attention to include narrow focus and global focus at the same time, and also the immersed and objective ways simultaneously.
13. When a part of the attention is focused on the attentional stream itself, it generates meta-attention, then meta-awareness, the awareness of awareness streams, creating a framework for awareness flows. While the feedback loop is added to the meta-processing of awareness, the witnessing awareness mode is activated, as an evolutionary response that supports the continuity of the feedback loop.
14. During adaptive processing, perspective filters are naturally created as coherent patterns of various information flows, such as awareness, cognition systems, attention schema, memory, sensory perception, energy patterns, self-identity. These patterns are then used to attend to the present moment.
15. Perspective-taking is the process a person uses to filter reality via various vantage points, or lenses, through which they select information sources and create meaning.
16. The perspective-taking generates highly subjective knowledge about reality, as it is conditioned by personal experiences, body functioning, group experiences, culture, and civilization habits.
17. Organic life of Earth developed collective patterns of functioning through the evolutionary process, reflecting in human inner experience as root tendencies. These natural tendencies and pulsions organize the adaptive processing in our body layers, and generate various collective patterns inside the conscious experience, common to all humans.
18. Root tendencies are barely accessible to our conscious awareness. Still, through in-depth self-exploration, it is possible to attend to their flows and adjust their effects in our inner life, through conscious interventions.
19. From an experiential first-person perspective, there are three essential layers of reality we can attend through the body: Physical, Energy, Information, all taking place in Space, as a container of these three layers, generating multidimensional dynamics inside the conscious experience. These reality layers reflect in the human experience as interpenetrating body layers.
20. Physical Body layer consists of physical matter and its organizations in cells, organs, and systems of cells. Their dynamics reflects in our inner experience through various external and internal senses, including sound, vision, touch, smell, internal organ sense, hunger, thirst, suffocation, pain, temperature, body position, balance, spatial orientation, movement, muscle and organs tensions, blood pressure, connectivity with other life forms, or other specific body processes.
21. Energy Body layer includes the energy exchanges that occur in our physical body, owing to various forces or phenomena, e.g., chemical, electromagnetism, gravitational, body heat, food processing, breath. The energy body is the result of life processes doing ‘work’ to maintain the functioning of a human being, perceived in various ways, e.g., emotions, feelings, flowing sensations, vital energy, sexual drives, cognitive energy, kundalini waves, energetic effects from interactions with humans, other life forms and nature, and various other energy-related sensations and perceptions.
22. Information Body layer incorporates various types of information exchanges between the cells and cell systems, and complex adaptive processing such as awareness, cognition, attention, perspective-taking, language and meanings, intelligence, social and interpersonal information exchanges, connections with the intelligence of other life forms, and information from various resonatory dynamics of life on Earth.
23. A good multi-modal integration enhances the conscious experience. Multi-modal integration refers to a harmonic integration of awareness related to body layers (physical, energy, and information). Memory and self-identity are embedded in all layers, that’s why during the inner growth process, one has to consider working with the patterns in all three body layers. The integration process is supported by a global attentional style, which keeps various flows of awareness together, in a synesthetic-like style.
24. Increasing the clarity of discrimination is essential for conscious experience. Clarity of discrimination refers to selecting-discriminating various stimuli, facets, and subsystems of the conscious experience. It also means perceiving and responding to differences and multiple changes in the inner and outer environment.
25. There is a variety of inner configurations available to humans, generating common states of consciousness such as waking state, relaxation, dreaming, deep sleep, transitions before-after sleep, daydreaming, creativity, trance states (zone/flow), or rare states such as lucid dreaming, high-energy experiences (kundalini spikes), samadhi, each of them having various stages of depth and variations.
26. Using witnessing awareness, we can attend to some structures and contents of the body’s adaptive processing even while dreaming or experiencing deep sleep. These inner configurations are known as witnessing dreams, witnessing deep sleep, and Turiya. In the Upanishads, Turiya is described as the fourth state of consciousness that could run in the background of all states, such as waking, sleeping, dreaming, or samadhi. Turiya is generated by a specific configuration of the witnessing awareness mode.
27. Conscious experience is enhanced if the perspective is trained to include attention to space, as a permanent part of the attentional schema. This creates a new type of awareness, known as spatial awareness, sometimes described by mystics and philosophers as the void-like nature of conscious experience.
28. By consciously using the perspective, the attentional schemes, and the connection with space, we can participate in the present moment with more richness, and connect with multiple layers of reality in creative ways.
29. The natural events in our lives create specific patterns of thinking, feeling, sensing, and acting. In time, they habituate as a psychological self-identity, a unique personality. Self-identity is a habituated way of experiencing life.
30. Specific and repeated events in our lives form a web of patterns that activate in specific circumstances, generating subpersonalities, mini-identities adapted to that specific event.
31. In the inner growth journey, observing the subpersonalities is the premise for becoming an authentic human being. In time, we can integrate all the subpersonalities into one fluid identity, and we can live in contact with the totality of us in each moment. To do this integration, first we need to notice the subpersonalities and then create a system of life-values that can apply to all subpersonalities. Using this method, we get a coherent structure that allows us to be authentic all the time, while adapting our behavior to each specific context.
32. The Consciousness Quotient is a composite psychological construct, including traits, skills, and abilities that allow us to explore and optimize the conscious experience.
33. An enhanced Consciousness Quotient means a higher degree of witnessing awareness and being less automatic in thinking, feeling, sensing, and interacting with people and the environment, together with a higher degree of choice when initiating a behavior. It also means a better capacity for connecting with life and experiencing fresh aliveness through the body.
II. INNER EVOLUTION DRIVES
34. Life on Earth is a continuous flow of change; collective adaptation and evolution unfold continuously in every human being, driven by internal and external circumstances.
35. Inner transformation happens whenever unexpected events, either personal, social, or planetary, require adaptation to new circumstances.
36. Along with the temporary drives requiring adaptation to unexpected issues in life, ten evolutionary drives could generate and sustain accelerated transformative waves in individuals.
37. Give Birth to Life.
This evolutionary drive provides the energy for the procreation and education of human descendants.
38. Connect and Align!
The drive to comply and align to group values and beliefs (including religious ones), by conforming and adjusting to collective cultural values and civilization rules, and achieving group ideals.
39. No More!
This drive sustains the evolutionary processes ignited by life issues such as dramas, traumas, failures, or conflicts. It relates to cleaning and healing the effects of unbalanced actions from the past, becoming aware and integrating the personal or transgenerational patterns, or solving personal problems.
40. What’s This?
The evolutionary drive toward understanding and generating new knowledge and wisdom.
41. Being Human.
The drive toward developing a healthy identity, sustaining the journeys toward maturity, autonomy, self-actualizing, unity, and adopting Being-values.
This drive motivates and sustains the journey toward harmony and freedom, usually through spirituality. Sattva is one of the three tendencies of Nature (‘gunas’), described by Eastern philosophies as the quality of ‘being light’ (as opposed to restlessness and heavy). Sattva also refers to goodness, positivity, truth, serenity, balance, and peacefulness. The other two tendencies of Nature are rajas, oriented toward passion, activity, bringing into motion, and tamas, related to confusion and inertia.
43. Feel Alive.
The evolutionary tendency to immerse in the experience of being alive.
44. What’s Beyond?
This drive generates evolution through curiosity and exploration.
45. Support And Protect Life.
The collective drive to take care of life, in all its forms.
46. Innovate And Share.
The evolutionary drive to generate innovative ways of being and living.
47. These evolutionary drives run in the background of conscious experience and focus the individual’s inner journey toward fulfilling their evolutionary goal, supporting the collective evolution.
48. The transformative waves generated by these drives could extend over many years or decades.
49. A transformative wave begins with a challenge, when the issue is presented to the global workspace of conscious awareness, followed by some chaos when new information is flooding the inner experience. Then the wave reaches a peak, when the ‘chaos’ is structured into new patterns through conscious awareness, generating a shift, usually followed by integration.
50. A transformative wave ends when that specific adaptation is acquired, the specific need has been satisfied, and the evolutionary seed unfolds. Multiple rounds of chaos-adaptation cycles could occur before the drive is satisfied. Some evolutionary drives are active for a very long time, or through the entire life of an individual, and their effects could be mistakenly considered as ‘stable personality traits’.
51. It’s natural for these drives to be depleted if the change requires a broad adaptation and cannot be acquired in one or a few waves. Sometimes a drive may activate again, generating another attempt to synchronize. Sometimes it remains inactive, and the drive energy is ‘reassigned’ by life’s intelligence to follow the natural pace of collective evolution.
52. More than one drive may be active simultaneously in an individual, at a given time, generating inner experiences with enhanced complexity and aliveness. For any individual who wants to understand what’s emerging now in their inner life, it is helpful to become aware of the active transformative waves, and notice whether the wave is peaking, or the energy is before or after the peak.
III. DEVELOPMENTAL MAPS
53. There are two main developmental paths available to us: Inner Growth (Growing Up) is a journey toward maturity and learning to develop a harmonic, healthy, and fluid self-identity, while the Awakening Journeys (Waking Up) add new depths and facets to our conscious experience of being alive, open and connected with ourselves and life.
54. Inner Growth, the journey toward psychological maturity and a fluid self-identity, occurs in developmental stages, from birth to adulthood, while the mental frameworks/worldviews evolve from egocentric (me) to ethnocentric (my family, my group), sociocentric (my community, my nation), worldcentric (all of us), planet-centric (all beings, the Earth), and kosmocentric (all that exists, the Universe). Caring, love, respect, and deep connection with nature and life are available at any stage of development.
55. Developmental psychologists have identified specific characteristics for each stage, that seem to be similar among all the people at that specific stage of inner growth and maturity, in all cultures. The characteristics include self-identity, meaning-making and perspective-taking styles, moral values, emotional, cognitive and interpersonal attitudes, thinking and language patterns. Later stages are not happier or more adjusted; each stage has its challenges.
56. The healthy transition through stages develops in a logical sequence. Later stages are reached by transitioning through the previous stages, incorporating their perspectives, structures, and patterns in a larger, more flexible, and connected self-identity.
57. A person at a more mature stage can understand earlier worldviews, while an individual at an earlier stage cannot understand someone whose center of gravity is at a more mature stage.
58. Most of us simultaneously live on multiple stages, e.g., a subpersonality may be on stage 4 and another one on stage 5. We can feel, act, and react authentically from a unified perspective only after the inner harmonization process has reached a certain maturity.
59. In the journey toward maturity, there are two steps in each transition through developmental stages: vertical development—a structural shift in meaning-making and horizontal development—an exploration of the world using the same configuration of being-thinking-feeling-sensing-acting-relating. Both are important and necessary for a healthy evolution of personality.
60. Occasionally, during ‘peak experiences, or ‘altered states of consciousness’, a person can temporarily access configurations specific to more mature stages, but without being able to influence the flow. After the peak experience ends, they tend to interpret the meaning of the peak experiences through their habituated perspectives. Although our psyche allows short-timed ‘vertical jumps’ during peak experiences, this is rare, as many peak experiences facilitate letting to, connecting, opening, allowing, fluidifying, or awakening experiences, and usually do not transform the self-identity structures.
61, Even after a stage is habituated, a regression of the ego center-of-gravity to an earlier stage may happen, due to stressful life events. In these situations, the ego returns to the last stable configuration. This is a healthy defense mechanism.
62. Understanding and learning about developmental stages and consciously using these transformation maps may reduce the inherent suffering during inner growth, by facilitating smooth transitions toward maturity and inner harmony.
63. If a person is interested in using the developmental stages map as a tool to self-evolution, it is more efficient to do it step by step and try to understand the following two stages of development, to do inner work to cultivate these new psychological structures and worldviews, to invite the transformation, and not focus on reaching the later stages of development directly. This process can be facilitated by transformational counselors who have been trained in vertical ego development and transformative methodologies.
64. During transitions toward maturity and autonomy, a repeating pattern has been observed. First, the person opens up to a new way of functioning, but they see it as a personal development (it’s about me). In the next step, they see this new way of functioning in other people, and realize that it is a collective feature (it’s about us).
65. Non-conceptual experiences (pure consciousness, unity consciousness, transcendental) are available across various developmental levels; they do not belong to a ‘higher’ developmental level.
66. Along the inner growth process, a simultaneous process of transformation could emerge, described as awakening journeys. Awakening journeys are a continuum of openings and insights about the functioning of life and nature. Each awakening is a transformative experience, felt like a transition toward a more complex and deeper awareness.
67. Awakenings are natural evolutionary processes, each one making a specific contribution to the collective self-reflection process. People all over the world have the same types of ‘openings/awakenings’, with a subjective flavor added by their preferred frames of reference.
68. There are various types of ‘openings’ that can be described as ‘awakenings’. An awakening is an opening to new ways of functioning, and provides new ways of being alive and connected with life.
69. In time, if this new opening is cultivated and consciously nurtured, it becomes an awakeness skill. In other words, it habituates, supported by the neuroplasticity of the brain. After these neuroplasticity processes occur, the person can use the new awakeness skill without investing much of their attention. It becomes automated, thus creating the conditions for the next step in evolution.
70. Each person creates meaning from these natural openings, based on their worldview. The individual’s interpretation of these natural evolutionary processes is biased by their meaning-making structure, due to the inherent limitations of the language used by each framework (e.g., spiritual, philosophical, religious, pseudoscientific, scientific, etc.).
71. Awakenings happen either sequentially or, sometimes, simultaneously. New awakenings can occur even if previous openings have not been habituated. Each opening has various depths, and it takes time to integrate it, anywhere between a few years to some decades. After integration, the new conscious awareness skills lead to lifestyle changes and new awakeness styles.
72. There is no ‘final’ awakening. Each awakening system triggers a deeper understanding of other systems, until multidimensional awakeness skills are acquired, and all the layers are harmonized and integrated with conscious experience. This process is species-wide, and it is a continuous process.
73. Awakenings can emerge within individuals at various developmental stages. Some awakenings are experienced in their essentiality at later stages, after the self-identity becomes more flexible,
74. Various opening experiences occur spontaneously during life, lasting from a few seconds to a few hours. Most people usually lack the education to recognize and cultivate them. When they are very intense, the opening moments could be considered peak experiences or altered states of consciousness.
75. Some evolutionary processes unfold in dramatic ways, which may be quite distressing for the people around. The societal reaction is to confuse these transformational moments and consider them psychosis, schizophrenia, or bipolar disorder, and slow down the transformation process using long-term medication.
76. Awakenings can be learned, cultivated, and invited into our lives, and habituated through practice. They are not necessarily the gift of any god or guru. Perhaps they are a gift of life, but who knows. We just need to allow ourselves to be transformed in new ways.
77. Various psychosomatic processes accompany both the inner growth journeys toward a mature and fluid self-identity, and the awakening journeys which enhance the connectivity with life. For in-depth information on psychosomatic dynamics, explore the following awakening journeys, described in the Appendix: ‘Conscious embodiment – the reconnection with the body energy and body perceptions’, ‘Awakening to the energy flows and kundalini awakening’, ‘Vibrational awakenings: from erotic to ecstatic, enstatic and beyond’, and ‘Awakening the heart and the experience of unconditional love as deep resonance’. Also, consider the ‘chakras’ model as a metaphor for energy dynamics, not a technical description of the energy body.
78. During inner evolution, the transformation ensues in all layers: physical, energy, and information. Each thinking pattern has a relationship with an energy pattern in the body or our emotional structure. Just intervening on one side will not produce a stable change. Visualization techniques, in which people imagine sending ‘energy’ to heal some parts of the body, produce only placebo effects. To harmonize the cognitive and emotional imprints in the body, we need to use the body, not to visualize ‘energies’ in the body.
79. The psychosomatic process generated by life’s energy intelligence known as kundalini has at least three parts: the first part seems to be pranotthana, or the cleaning process, when the body may be convulsing, moving uncontrollably, or sometimes performing perfect yoga asanas or spontaneous mudras. The second part is when the energy can propagate smoothly and increases the synchrony of rhythms and flows in the energy body.
80. The third part is when energy has been flowing well for some years, and the person can increase the aliveness without losing the high synchrony by generating expansive energy spikes. It’s a transition from ecstatic to enstatic, usually ocurring after the person develops the ability to allow high-frequency experiences in the energy body, by increasing the density of the experiences, not the expansion. This transition is supported by a lifestyle that is oriented toward spirituality and harmony, and the predominance of the sattva tendency in all layers.
IV. TRANSFORMATIVE LEARNING
81. Transformative learning involves learning, adjusting, adapting, and habituating new ways of being alive.
82. The learning process during inner growth requires an upgrade in the meaning-making structure, and learning a basic terminology related to transformative processes. By understanding what’s happening, the developmental transitions could unfold quicker, thus reducing the confusion and suffering.
83. Developing visual-spatial thinking (thinking through spatial imagery), along with the auditory-verbal (sequential) thinking, provides an increased speed of processing and facilitates learning and understanding during inner growth. An easy access to both systems is helpful.
84. Samyama is a process of perfect and continuous fusion with the object of attention, through absorption. This uninterrupted connection generates a real-time tuning of cognitive understanding and other perceptions, leading to prajna, the experiential-direct knowledge.
85. Learning to practice samyama is helpful for finding the in-depth roots of the developmental flows. Practicing samyama with various issues and topics that arise during inner growth could provide insights for correct decisions, related to that specific issue.
86. A growth mindset is essential for inner transformation. It includes openness, cognitive and emotional flexibility, accepting criticism, accepting paradoxes, the frequent usage of ‘I don’t know yet’, and unconditional acceptance of life. All these qualities need to be fueled daily when the conscious transformation begins. In time, they will provide an automatic framework, catalyzing the inner growth journey.
87. In the inner growth journeys, we must defeat the psychological inertia and modify the inner defense mechanisms that maintain ego stability. The ego is a consequence of evolution, that’s why the process of changing is not gratified by nature with joy, but with fear and frustration. Some people tend to see this inertia as a negative aspect, or negative energies, that ‘attack them’. But, positive emotions (e.g., enthusiasm, joy, curiosity) are also released as an evolutionary support to overcome the inertia.
88. Authenticity and radical honesty are essential during inner growth, to integrate the subpersonalities and create a workspace for the pre-conscious information to participate in the conscious experience flow. We cannot change the past; all we can do is accept everything, and see the present as a result of our past actions. What we can do is become fully honest and authentic and change the future by acting differently.
89. Usually, it takes more than one cycle of exploration to integrate an issue or a subpersonality that is unbalanced. Some brilliant and meticulous individuals in a counseling or self-development process tend to self-arrest themselves in a paradigm, just because they are ambitious at try to solve an issue entirely, before moving on to the next topic. They keep looking at causes and answers for too long, by diving again and again into their personal and transgenerational contents, looking for final answers or a final healing. But, even if we use our discriminative power extensively, and do body work, some life issues are so intricate and complex, that the only way to ‘solve’ them for good is to grow up as a whole and become more mature with our entire being.
90. During inner growth, everyone has times of high sensitivity. A highly sensitive person has an increased depth of processing, is over-aroused (easily aroused compared to others), has high emotional reactivity and empathy, and higher sensitivity to various stimuli. When people work with their emotional system using witnessing awareness, they discover new depths of sensitivity, experiencing full empathy and full connections with the target of the attentional stream.
91. Anxiety and depression are natural experiences, along the continuum of aliveness. When there is too much activation of life energy, people experience anxiety. When there is less aliveness, they experience depression. Learning to balance aliveness is essential for navigating inner transformation.
92. Transformative change requires noticing and observing the patterns, and understanding how these patterns connect and work together within systems. Systems thinking is a fundamental skill for a mature self-identity. Some of the systems which can be analyzed during inner growth are the body, the food, the emotions, the relationships with other people, the mind, the way we talk, the ego. Maybe the most dramatic transition during inner growth occurs in the post-autonomous stages of development (construct-aware or ego-aware, and unitive), when people can see their ego as a system and stop the compulsive identification with it, by expanding the perspective to include the ego as one of the many systems that create our inner life.
93. The switch from automatic pilot to conscious functioning requires an in-depth exploration of our ways of being and interacting. The process of inner growth is a large-scale re-programming of some automatic patterns that are available to conscious awareness.
94. Some automatic structures of the psyche are available for re-programming easily; some of them aren’t, due to the non-conscious self-defenses that make us negate, reject or ignore some experiences and their significance.
95. The rejected/ignored content is what psychologists call the shadow. The shadow is an informational content that is already available to conscious awareness, but the ego-control is acting like the content doesn’t exist, thus reducing the harmony within the psyche. The shadow is usually created during childhood, through unhealthy parenting styles, and propagates from childhood to adult life. The shadow could be transferred from parents to their descendants, if the adult doesn’t do inner work. In the inner growth process, it is necessary to access the shadow, and allow its contents and patterns to contribute to the conscious experience.
96. De-automatization involves a new skill: observing the ego defense mechanisms and skip using them. Allowing all kinds of experiences to flow through us is a natural way to integrate and accept them. The interpretation of the inner experiences that we don’t like as ‘negative’ stops the conscious processing of those parts labeled as ‘negative’.
97. These are some estimates for the rate of transformation: at least 6-8 months to change a habit; five years to transition from a developmental stage of maturity to another one, if the circumstances are favorable, or at least two years if the person is doing vertical transformative work under supervision; at least 1-2 years to integrate a transformative experience; at least 3-5 years after an awakening experience. These are highly subjective estimates, and depend on the time allocated to inner work and practice.
98. People with high transformative potential who decide to take a positive disintegration approach could advance more rapidly through transitions, but they also need time for integration.
99. The inner transformation rate is substantially increased by adopting a no-drama attitude toward life experiences. The inner growth generates fundamental changes in the inner structure and social-relational networks, and frictions could emerge. Allowing ourselves to adapt ‘fast’ could be a helpful strategy.
100. The practice of inner arts every night, before sleep, could enhance the rate of adaptation, by allowing the daily echoes to be processed and integrated within the conscious awareness. While the body transitions from wakefulness to sleep, an active witnessing could support the accelerated integration of the daily issues. The simple act of contemplating the inner world, while transitioning to sleep and entering the dream mode, is a powerful and straightforward method that can be used by anyone who doesn’t have the necessary time for a separate daily practice.
101. The intention is a lens through which we pre-define the perspective-taking process. The intention is composed of a choice and a commitment to action. Using intentions all the time is unhealthy, because ultimately, the intention is also a way of ‘controlling’ the perception of reality. Rather than making an intention for ‘something’, it is more efficient to use broader intentions, such as ‘I wish to live the experiences that I need, in order to change’, or ‘I trust life, and I am heading towards where I am needed’, followed by actions.
102. Daily practice is essential for supporting self-directed neuroplasticity. The concept of ‘self-directed neuroplasticity’ means that we can intentionally change some functioning of our brain with our minds. We can embrace new ways of thinking, and feel them in our minds, by visualizing how we want to be. Due to this stimulation, repeated over time, the brain will create new neural connections, and the anticipated experience becomes available to choice-making during everyday activities. Then, it’s about practicing the new ways, until they habituate.
103. We don’t necessarily need a teacher or a master during the inner growth process. The master-disciple relation is just a way of learning, among many other ways.
104. Abandoning the rational mind to the inner master’s intuitive powers is not always optimal. Until the psyche has not undergone a ‘cleaning’ through personal work, the information received as ‘intuition’ is just as biased as our usual psyche. Intuitions are just valuable choices, not ‘truths’.
105. For changing a perspective, the first steps are opening to the unknown, and paying attention to how the perspectives are naturally created through automatic contrasts and associations. The new perspective is automatically (non-consciously) created by comparing it with previous experiences. While learning perspective flexibility, a complete letting go the old perspective is impossible. The let go has to be done in incremental steps.
106. The transition from one perspective to multiple perspectives is catalyzed by integrating the polarities, by going from ‘or/or’ approaches, ‘this or that’, ‘me or others’, ‘good or bad’, to an inclusive view, integrating ‘this and that’, ‘good and evil’, ‘me and the others’. What is seen as the opposite/duality in a previous perspective must be seen as a whole in the new one.
107. Moving to a new perspective requires prioritizing the chosen qualities and configuration, among the variety of possible options, and fixating the quality by using it intentionally, until it habituates and becomes automatic.
108. When learning a new perspective, a linguistic bias may interfere: using old language to describe new perspectives. This is a natural phenomenon during the early stages of transitioning to a new perspective, when the feel of the perspective is different from the person’s previous experiences. One of the tasks when transitioning to a new configuration is learning to use words in a new way.
109. A trigger is a conscious and unconscious anchoring of the perspectives. Each perspective has its triggers, or anchors. An anchor is a stimulus that could retrieve from memory the desired perspective or emotional state.
110. During inner growth, there are some patterns of transformation that are relatively common to people of all cultures: automatic life review, symbolic journey, and healing the transgenerational patterns. These transformative processes require many years to be completed, but the result is a more harmonic inner organization, that facilitates the next steps in evolution.
111. Automatic life review is an automated process that offers new perspectives on past events, by reframing and reinterpreting our memories of past experiences, thus providing new meanings. Its outcome is an automatic memory reconsolidation. The life review process unfolds in progressive steps, until the content of memory has been reorganized and allowed to participate easily in the conscious experience.
112. The explosion of meaning: symbolic journey and theory of everything – This associative mental process indicates the start of a profound transformation. It is sometimes generated by the emergence of systems thinking, sometimes by a traumatic life event, and sometimes by other causes. During this process, meanings begin to connect in various symbolic ways. It is a natural process that will eventually lead the journeyer to their own ‘theory of everything’, a personal map that charts the known territories of their life.
113. Healing the transgenerational patterns – This process is about awakening from the spiral of continuous patterns that persist from generation to generation. It requires an understanding of transgenerational schemes of thinking, feeling, sensing, and behaving. Growing up is not just for ourselves; we grow up as a part of a collective evolutionary process. To become fully free, a person has to notice these transgenerational patterns, do what they can to harmonize them, then extract themselves from their transgenerational flow, and connect to the larger family of humankind.
114. What it feels like when I change? What it feels like when other people change? Deep change involves bearing a process that we do not yet understand. It involves changing the physical, emotional, and intellectual organization, and this growth process, once started, unfolds continuously, day and night.
V. DEVELOPMENTAL CHALLENGES
115. During inner evolution, a series of transformative challenges have been observed by psychologists and practitioners. They may not appear in all individuals, but it’s helpful to know that they could emerge. If these challenges are not identified and recognized, their automatic unfolding may lead to unnecessary suffering.
116. Depersonalization – In the inner growth journeys, depersonalization may relate to the emergence of witnessing awareness. When witnessing first appears, there is a shift in the locus of identity: people see themselves as if from outside, and the entire life could look like a dream. Depersonalization occurs as a natural post-traumatic response, due to drug addictions (such as ketamine), or as a side effect while learning the ‘observing’ point-of-view and ‘non-dual’ inner configurations.
117. Mara’s daughters: the chosen one – The tendency to think the ‘I am the chosen one’, that ‘I am the only one that has awakened, and I am the next Jesus/Buddha/you name it’, and ‘there are no others like me’. Just say ‘no thanks’ to this proposal, when it begins to unfold.
118. Mara’s daughters: ego hijacking – This is a pattern of experience whereby, after an awakening or transformative experience, or moment of pure awareness, the resulting energy is captured by ego-related desires and consumed by fulfilling them. Just say ‘not yet’ to ‘start-now-this-project’ drive, while you are in the post-awakening high. Think about big plans, but don’t start anything; wait until the high passes, then check with yourself again to see if you still feel like doing it.
119. Ego hijacking may be a cause of the bipolar cycle during inner growth. After a moment of inspiration, the available energy is consumed by various activities (either everyday activities or ‘divine missions’ or ‘change the world missions’). During the ‘consumption’ phase, the high activation of energy looks like a manic episode; after it is consumed, depression ensues. The solution for this challenge is to use the energy internally and allow it to transform internal mechanisms of being. In other words, the energy should be interiorized and processed similarly to how erotic energy can be converted into enstatic energy.
120. Mara’s daughters: when the ego thinks there is no ego – The ‘ego’ never disappears; it just fluidifies, becomes more flexible and adapted to moment-to-moment flows. The patterns of body’s adaptive processing are always in us, and they do have a preferred way of functioning that translates in our conscious experience as an ‘ego’. We can’t drop the ego, but we may drop the ‘there is no ego’ perspective and see what happens next. This challenge seems to be related to some spiritual or philosophical communities with a dominant perspective that ‘I just am’, ‘there is no ego here while I am talking’, or ‘the ego doesn’t exist’.
121. Dark nights and regaining connection – After the blissful high of the awakening, the energy level and creativity may decrease, and some people think that they have lost their ‘gifts’, or God has abandoned them, or related thoughts. If this challenge presents itself, instead of searching for ways to return to the awakening/connected state, know that most awakenings are new ways of flowing, not fixed states, and emerge by abandoning continuously into the layers of the present moment, not through remembering.
122. Maya pattern – When an individual first realizes the amplitude of the automatic collective patterns, it may be dramatic for the social-relational perspective, after observing that many people live in an ‘internal movie’ and are partially connected to the present moment. In this situation, the only one you can really ‘save’ is yourself. The collective awakening from illusion is at its earliest stage, and it will take many millennia to advance. Just do your part as well as you can.
123. Spiritual-framework absorption (spiritual bypass) – There is a widespread tendency to use spiritual ideas and practices to sidestep or avoid unresolved emotional issues, psychological wounds, and unfinished developmental tasks. The biases emerging from absorption into spiritual framework may include a weak self-identity, compulsive goodness, whitewashing, repression of undesirable or painful emotions, spiritual narcissism, extreme external locus of control, spiritual obsession or addiction, blind faith in charismatic leaders, the abdication of personal responsibility, and social isolation.
124. Channeling is a way of discovering an ‘unusual’ perspective and allowing information to flow from within, using that specific perspective. Some people misinterpret this process by thinking that the information source is an entity, a spirit, an angel, or an extraterrestrial, outside their psyche. The challenge in this situation is recognizing that the channeling source is always internal, and allowing the ‘unusual’ perspective to be integrated with the other perspectives, in a healthy self-identity. To do this, one has to modify their attention schema, by allowing the ‘channeled’ configuration to participate in the conscious experience, on a daily basis.
125. Information overload may happen during intense waves of transformation. In this situation, it is better to reconnect with nature and use visual methods for organizing the information (such as drawing, painting). A method that has been proven helpful is to gather the information in categories and systems using visual ‘life maps’ or ‘journey maps’, and to repeat this process until the information has been organized.
126. Information from the collective may populate the personal inner experience, when there is a personal resonatory pattern actively connected to external sources (e.g., through loving someone or something), or as a result of social interactions, reading books, or watching TV.
127. Differentiating between ‘my’ content (my emotions, my thoughts) and externally induced content (imprints from interaction with others’ emotions and thoughts) is vital for inner exploration. After connecting with someone, notice if your mind tends to ‘talk’ with that person. If this is the case, switch the inner talk to self-reflection using a 3rd person perspective (talk with yourself about that person and the interactions with that person).
128. Integrating a spiritually transformative experience include challenges such as processing a radical shift in one’s reality, sharing the experience, integrating new spiritual values and knowledge with worldly expectations, adjusting to hypersensitivities and psychic aftereffects, or finding purpose.
129. Inner growth dynamics related to the transition to a more fluid self-identity are rarely approached successfully by traditional psychotherapeutic methods. They require therapists with experience in non-dual psychotherapy and knowledge of ego development stages. The counselor must ‘abandon’ their regular ego, as the client experiences an ego-death or an identity change. Otherwise, the counselor will unconsciously ‘fixate’ the client’s ego, stopping the transformation process. An appropriate therapeutic approach could be an unconditional presence, which doesn’t require establishing a ‘rapport’ between the counselor and the client.
130. Sometimes the transition to a new inner configuration happens dramatically, leading to psycho-spiritual crises. Therapeutic approaches such as ‘open dialogue’, ‘healing homes’, and nature retreats have been proven to support individuals through these types of transformations.
131. To reach a global inner harmony, all components of conscious experience (such as witnessing, cognition, perspective, attention, emotions, pulsional energy, perceptual connection to the physical body, and self-identity) must be transformed and allowed to function simultaneously. All systems need upgrades to create a harmonic conscious experience. E.g., shutting down the development of rational thinking to favor emotional connection (‘all is love, nothing else matters’; ‘feel, don’t think’), or shutting down self-identity to favor non-dual awareness (‘all is awareness, Universe is awareness’) may be helpful for a while. Still, overall these unilateral trajectories lead to unbalanced development.
VI. DISCOVERY JOURNEYS
132. There are three main types of inner configurations (‘states of consciousness’), that unfold naturally or can be accessed through various transformative methods:
– Low arousal configurations, when the physical, energy, and information layers of the body have the same pattern of slow activity. These configurations are active in relaxation, yoga asanas, meditation, and deep sleep.
– High arousal configuration, when the body layers are hyper-activated. Some examples are dance, mystical rapture, ecstatic trance, and kundalini experiences.
– Mixed configurations, when the layers are not following the same pattern of activation. In these mixed configurations, a body layer could be aroused while others are relaxed, or various combinations of low-high arousals of the body layers. This category includes experiences such as night dreams, lucid dreaming, some entheogenic experiences, or enstatic flowing.
133. On the low arousal continuum, a typical inner art session using relaxation has these stages: after closing the eyes, and calming the body-mind, the inner experience shifts to relaxation, and the mind content is usually composed of adaptive processing of the daily activities. After a while, pratyahara occurs (isolation from external stimuli), and the body layers can either enter a dream state, or transition directly to deep sleep, depending on how tired the physical body is. For inner art sessions, it is better to allow a short journey into deep sleep, so that the body would replenish and reharmonize naturally. Then, after refreshing the energy resources, the person would be able to start the inner explorations with a clear mind.
134. On the high arousal continuum, during inner art sessions with an energetic component, the inner world has a specific quality when kundalini is activated (by itself or intentionally). High-energy kundalini spikes tend to energize the visual spatio-temporal thinking, manifested as ‘visions’, as compared to the audio-sequential thinking, mediated by words. The speed of thinking is higher through images, and the rich causal content of the high-energy experiences makes the perceived speed even faster, because causal events enter awareness faster than non-causal events.
135. It is possible to add spatial awareness and depth perception to the workspace of the inner experience, by adding awareness about the physical space, and the size of the perceived body layers. Try this sequence: maintain pratyahara with closed eyes, reach a stable isolation from external stimuli, then use spatial awareness and expand the attention to include external space, not just the inner space, and keep both external and internal space as ‘one’. In other words, use the deep connection with the inner space, specific to pratyahara style, but refine the perspective to perceive inner space and the external space as one, and allow information from outside the body to enter the experience. When external awareness is merged with internal awareness, having as a common framework the physical space, the state is referred to as a unitive experience (or unitary mystical state).
136. The localization of the inner experiences in the physical 3D space, using divided attention, could clarify some confusion in the interpretation of the inner experiences. E.g., dreaming and dream-like experiences such as ‘out-of-body experiences’ take place in the inner space, while pratyahara is active.
137. The night dream is a partial reflection of the automatic adaptive processing in the body layers (physical, energy, and information). The night dream may provide useful information about the inner life dynamics, by using the dreamwork psychology methodologies for exploration and interpretation. The books with dream symbols and their symbolic interpretation have no relevant value for inner growth, because each dream symbol has a personal significance to the dreamer. Moreover, the same symbol can have a different meaning in each dream, depending on the context. When analyzing the dreams, the relationship of the dream ego with the symbol is more relevant than the symbol itself.
138. By accessing a dream-like configuration in self-induced experiences during inner art sessions, it is possible to intervene in the automatic adaptive processing, and modify or ‘align’ some patterns. It is healthy to do these dreamwork explorations separately from the natural night dreaming process, which is vital to happen automatically, outside the ego control. While working with dream-like experiences, an active witnessing awareness mode is necessary, especially during the transitions through dream state and deep sleep state.
139. The automatic adaptive processing, that becomes available to conscious awareness during inner explorations in visual dream-like states, is grouped in patterns that have specific styles of unfolding (flowing). As pieces of information can contribute to more than one pattern, the meanings would shift dynamically, while the the visual-spatial thinking creates various visual landscapes and actions, based on the non-conscious automatic processing.
140. When working with the visual-spatial content and patterns during inner explorations, the pattern of flowing is more relevant, not the interpretation of the symbolic content. In other words, pay attention to how the dream-like scenes unfold, explore why and how they transform from one into another, and see that their flowing pattern is generated by your mental and emotional preferences. Then, work with yourself to adjust your life through more harmonic actions, and watch again in the inner art sessions if the unfolding pattern has changed.
141. Lucid dreaming or visualizations may alter some flowing patterns. Still, these methods need frequent actions on the same pattern to induce a change in the pattern, as these methods usually do not connect with the physical and energy correlate of that pattern. Visualization and lucid dreaming are usually focused on exploring the content of the patterns, not their causal structure, or their specific way of unfolding.
142. During visual dream-like states, all body layers are in a continuous state of flux, and they flow based on patterns that were developed in past experiences. Some of their relevant past configurations could be partially revealed to conscious awareness, when samyama is performed on a specific scene or pattern of flowing, during the visual dream-like state, while monitoring the inner workspace using witnessing awareness.
143. In dream-like visual configurations, it is possible to access the H-band, the pre-conscious adaptive processing. The H-layer contains information at the brink of making associations that may further develop (or not) as patterns, which later enter the conscious experience. The attention schema that is useful for attending to the H-band is the global-objective style.
144. Other layers that can be accessed during visual explorations include the archetypal layer containing highly symbolic and emotional content from various cultures, or the visionary layer, which includes highly packed information in higher resolution, with powerful insights and energetic effects, when kundalini is involved.
145. Visionary experiences are available through exogenous entheogens, music, dance, or natural kundalini activations, but also intentionally, through practice, during inner arts sessions. Intentional visionary experiences are facilitated by previous experiences of kundalini activation, or kundalini peaks during experiences with entheogenic medicine such as ayahuasca, changa, or with LSD, mescaline, psilocybin, or other plants or substances.
146. Navigating the inner world during intentional visionary experiences requires practicing a conscious transition through the layers of experience and developing skills for diving into various contents (through samyama), without being fully absorbed in the content of the experience.
147. The densely packed information, accessed during high-energy kundalini peaks, can be perceived as downloads of information. This is a natural property of the high-resolution visual-perceptual style of thinking compared to the everyday low-resolution style. Because of its multidimensionality, even a simple high-resolution scene can have an intense meaning-making message, which can be later unzipped and re-encoded into the everyday lifestyle as usable information.
148. During high-energy kundalini peaks, the perceptual visual flows, including visual-spatial thinking and perceptual visuals related to the eye retina, can be used as a feedback tool for navigating through visionary experiences, in an intentional and interactive way. When visual-spatial thinking is active (as in a dreamy state), visions can be similar to a lucid dream but with an intense meaning-making structure.
149. Learning the transition from ecstatic to enstatic configurations provides more awareness during high-energy experiences and opens up new gates for exploration. Enstatic flowing is generated when attention is divided to incorporate two configurations: high-energy experience of the moving body and the silent-static experience of ‘center/space’, simultaneously. Enstatic dance is one method that allows the management of high-energy kundalini spikes during visionary experiences, which sometimes feel overwhelming if the person is static.
150. The enstatic skills, allowing low and high arousal simultaneously, broaden the variety of inner experiences and enhance the multidimensionality of experiences. Developing enstatic skills and practicing enstatic dance is also helpful for individuals who experience sudden uncontrollable body tremors or spasms, while going through the pranotthana stage of kundalini awakening. The practice of enstatic flowing enhances the fluidity of the energy body patterns.
151. During intentional visionary experiences, a direct method that produces an instant reconsolidation is to enter the dream-like state, watch the unfolding automatic perception through dream-like visuals, and when a scene from the visual experience needs to be modified, intervene by activating the retina perception (inner eye vision). Then, focus on that specific flow/pattern, and dive-into/absorb that pattern (or visual scene), in a way similar to samyama, while allowing the automatic activation of kundalini, then allowing the pattern to be harmonized by itself within the body layers. Using this method of fully merging with a visual scene, it is unnecessary to control the pattern by directing it to a ‘correct’ flow. Instead, the full acceptance of whatever comes generates an automatic homeostatic integration process.
152. The high-pitched sound that appears during high-energy DMT-like experiences, usually called ‘carrier wave’, comes from the self-tuning energy, due to the ‘pressure’ of the hyper-synchronizing process. This sound becomes noticeable not only in high-energy experiences, but also when people begin their transformational journeys in life, or go through transformative times. Sometimes, the inner sound is misdiagnosed as tinnitus.
153. Using inner sound as a feedback tool while navigating visionary experiences is a simple and effective tool for diving deeper into inner experiences, and creating the inner workspace for intentional visionary experiences.
154. Engaging in frequent transformative experiences without allowing time for their integration may be partially helpful. E.g., an intense entheogenic experience needs at least half a year or one year to integrate, due to its cascading effects, from easy-to-observe changes in the first weeks, to deep and subtle changes in the months and years following the experience.
155. During collective experiences with ayahuasca, such as the dancing ceremonies at Santo Daime, the synchronizing process is facilitated by the collective. Sometimes, a person would process a collective blockage, helping all the others. Or a person may cry, without having a personal reason, but because it helps another person in the group who is energy-stuck.
156. Practicing shared awareness consciously together, in groups, we awaken to who and what we all truly are, an enlightening universal intelligence appearing as uniquely individuating minds and bodies. Awakeness has no image, yet—like a mirror—it unites, reflects, and transforms our imaginations, causing love and awe. By sharing awakeness, the delusions of separation dissolve, awakening and enlightening our selves and all of humankind.
157. Conscious evolution in intimate relationships means transitioning from psychological and emotional co-dependency, or relationships based on fulfilling practical-psychological needs, to conscious relationships, either as a couple or in a marriage. In a conscious relationship, both partners have a growth mindset, oriented toward mutual co-evolution. The partners seek to empower each other, and provide a space for the partner to evolve, while enjoying the shared space and what each other provides, without forcing or manipulating the partner to a desired behavior or attitude.
158. In this type of transformative connection, the relationship is seen primarily as a space to share and practice deep connection, mutual awakening, growth, unconditional love, and caring. Fulfilling other needs comes as a secondary benefit. In a conscious relationship, each partner is responsible for their own emotions and feelings and is committed to doing inner work to harmonize themselves without projecting their own needs and desires on the partner. Working with the shadow and developing emotional intelligence is vital for the development of a conscious relationship.
159. Some conscious relationships are experienced by partners as ‘soul-mate’ connections, where there is a total openness to the connection, and the partners can ‘see’ and ‘feel’ each other in extraordinary deep and interconnected ways. However, once it is developed, this harmonic profoundness can become a conscious interconnectivity skill and be used for interacting with other people from the larger ‘soul-family’, or with anyone open to this type of soul-level connection.
160. The conscious skills learned during the developmental journeys can be used by couples and individuals who become parents to develop a conscious parenting style. Conscious parenting includes a positive parenting approach, as opposed to power-based approaches such as authoritarian, permissive, or uninvolved. Conscious parenting promotes an empathic and open communication based on emotional intelligence, respect, authenticity, unconditional love and support, especially in the early years when the brain patterns are developing their mainframes. The conscious parenting approach has roots in educational styles such as Montessori or Waldorf, proven to have positive effects on the children’s inner development.
161. The conscious parenting style is highly intentional, focusing on increasing the we-space and the presence-awareness in the parental relationship, supporting the children’s inner growth. Conscious parents are aware that their non-conscious processes are easily transferred to their kids through imitation and resonance. Thus, they become interested in doing personal work to harmonize the unhealthy transgenerational patterns in themselves, so that these patterns won’t be transferred to their children.
162. The conscious skills could also be used for developing conscious organizations and learning conscious leadership skills. A conscious organization is described by a worldcentric or planet-centric perspective, a collective evolutionary purpose, a culture based on cooperation-collaboration, and considering the employees as valuable human beings with complex personalities (not human tools). In a conscious organization, the relationships between the hierarchical levels are based on reciprocal leadership (instead of power-based hierarchical structures), and the managers are empowering the individuals in their teams to develop and evolve as human beings.
163. Conscious leaders are aware, cooperative, and collaborative. Conscious leadership is grounded in the sociocultural knowledge of reciprocity, allowing leaders to perceive patterns in the environment, see the interconnectivity of multiple problems, and subscribe to a participatory leadership style, which incorporates the idea of shared responsibility and problem-solving.
164. Similar to the personal growth through developmental stages, an organization could be viewed as having stages of development, depending on their leaders’ stage of maturity. Each stage is an increasing step toward a more conscious leadership structure. Developing an awareness of organizational stages could be helpful for organizational consultants and trainers.
VII. CONSCIOUS EVOLUTION
165. The inner evolution of humans toward a more conscious experience is a part of a larger evolution of life on Earth, and the evolution of the Universe through the Stelliferous/Galaxies Era, providing the necessary ingredients for life, and the energy to sustain it.
166. In the cosmological timeline, we are positioned at the mid-point of the Stelliferous Era. The vast majority of stars and planets are yet to be born, long after the cellular life on Earth is no longer possible. The Universe may produce other types of life, not necessarily carbon-based, and the tendency to self-organization will also generate some self-reflective consciousness in these species, but their ‘consciousness’ may have other evolutionary purposes than in life on Earth.
167, Although at the global scale of the Universe, the potential for life, intelligence, and consciousness is immense, in our local timeline on events, life on Earth has a big survivability issue: it is at the end of its journey. It started approx 4,000 million years and only has aprox. 500 million years until C3 photosynthesis is no longer possible due to Sun’s increased radiation, leading to a global extinction of multicellular life up to 1 billion years in the future.
168. Organic life on Earth is the only known process that systematically records the information about its past dynamics in a self-reflecting and local way, through various recording systems including DNA and books, and uses this knowledge for adaptation and creative evolution. Individuals from various life species use previously-stored experience in creative ways. Self-consciousness is not necessarily needed for reacting creatively to an inertial tendency; a high intelligence may be enough in some situations.
169. It may be that the conscious experience itself is just a layer of life’s intelligence, that uses sophisticated feedback loops and adds another layer of processing to the adaptive processing already taking place in all life on Earth. Conscious intelligence is evolving throughout all species, at various rates.
170. The inner evolution is a reflection of the collective evolution. Although some humans may develop themselves to incredible levels of inner harmony, this personal ‘achievement’ was only possible because of the collective, and it is essential to feed-back the ‘personal achievement’ to the collective. Although life’s evolution is supported by interdependence and cooperation, it is likely that not all the ‘personal achievements’ are later integrated by the collective life’s intelligence. Some individuals or groups may be living using highly unique conscious configurations.
171. These unique personal configurations may have a source not only in the psychological and social aspects, but they can be related to a specific configuration of the physical body, such as a high quantity of unique codes in the microbiome’s DNA. E.g., the human genome has about 20-25.000 genes, and there are barely 1% genetic differences between individuals, while the microbiome has millions of genes, half of them unique. The extraordinary variety of information in the microbiome impacts the qualities and nuances of the conscious experience.
172. In these collective frames of reference, some questions can hardly find answers. How conscious can someone become? How awake and alive? Where is humanity heading to? Finding purpose in these complex perspectives may be difficult, but what has been proven useful is developing evolutionary awareness and following the ‘intentional evolutionary’ path.
173. The intentional evolutionary path has already been opened by the vows of boddhisattvas, millennia ago. Across the planet, there is an emergence of individuals choosing to dedicate their lives to consciously advancing the evolutionary process. They see that their lives are an essential part of the global evolutionary process and realize that they have a significant role in its future evolution.
174. The intentional evolutionaries are living answers to life’s most challenging self-inquiries: Why am I here? What is my purpose? What can I do with my life? Being aware of the cooperative direction of evolution, could I use this knowledge to do what I can to ensure humanity achieves future evolutionary success? What contribution could I make to the evolution of humanity?
175. In our collective evolution, the next global shift after conscious intelligence could be the expansion of harmonic intelligence, which has ‘harmonic resonance’ and ‘synchronization’ as essential skills. Conscious harmonic resonance skills are already emerging in humans.
176. What will happen when conscious harmonic resonance evolves to its full potential, in all three layers of our body—physical, energy, and information? Maybe there is already a word for this vibrational harmony: satcitānanda—harmonic existence and truth, harmonic conscious awareness, and harmonic enstatic bliss. And maybe the path is spanda—the harmonic synchrony with the primordial vibration of the Universe.
177. Id est omnia. Please filter these consciousness sutras through your own experience, and add your color to the rainbow.
A timeless blessing, inspired by Metta meditations
May I Be Peaceful.
May I Be Free.
May My Body Be Strong and Healthy.
May I Be Filled with Loving Kindness.
May I Be Happy.
May I Awaken to The Light of My True Nature.
May I Be Safe.
May I Have Simplicity and Prosperity in Life.
May I Be Well.
May I Have Equilibrium in Life.
May I Be Free from Suffering.
May I Live in Harmony with Life.
May I Be in Resonance and Intimacy with Life.
May I Be Free of Unhealthy Attachments.
May I Be in Harmony with Life Force.
I Offer Compassion for Me.
I Offer Loving Kindness for Me.
May You Be Peaceful.
May You Be Free.
May Your Body Be Healthy.
May You Be Happy.
May You Awaken to The Light of Your True Nature.
May You Be Safe.
May You Have Simplicity and Prosperity in Life.
May You Be Well.
May You Have Equilibrium in Life.
May You Be Free from Suffering.
May You Be in Resonance and Intimacy with Life.
May You Be Free of Unhealthy Attachments.
May You Be in Harmony with Life Force.
I Offer Compassion for You.
I Offer Loving Kindness for You.
May All Beings Be Peaceful.
May All Beings Be Free.
May All Beings Be Healthy.
May All Beings Be Happy.
May All Beings Awaken to The Light of Their True Nature.
May All Beings Be Safe.
May All Beings Have Simplicity and Prosperity In Life.
May All Beings Be Well.
May All Beings Have Equilibrium in Life.
May All Beings Be Free from Suffering.
May All Beings Be in Resonance and Intimacy with Life.
May All Beings Be Free of Unhealthy Attachments.
May All Beings Be in Harmony with Life Force.
I Offer Compassion for All Beings.
I Offer Loving Kindness for All Beings.
* Featured image: scene from Burning Man Festival, by Jeet-Kei Leung (The Bloom documentary)