Ten Commandments of Everyday Living: 4
Dispel negative emotion as a matter of psychic hygiene as you would wash your hands after coming into contact with anything unclean.
of creed and culture and the ease of access to water, the idea of doing
the daily round, whatever that might involve, grimy and in clothes stained
with food and excrement is unacceptable. Such personal neglect takes us
below a universally recognised standard for human dignity. Many people
have jobs and hobbies which involve getting dirty but this is a state of
affairs to be remedied at the first opportunity. Generally we find it
uncomfortable and unpleasant to be physically dirty, and from babyhood
onwards, we recognise the change in our psychological state brought about
by getting cleaned up. Keeping prisoners in conditions where they cannot
keep themselves clean is used as a means of breaking their spirits, and to
permit young children to go dirty is considered to be cruelty. Adults who
allow themselves to fall into a state of slovenly physical neglect are
perceived to be mentally ill or socially subversive.
when it comes to astral dirt we live in a state of degradation because we
are conditioned to believe that we are powerless to clean ourselves up
because we have no control over our emotional reactions. Such guidance
that exists tends to focus upon avoidance of negative states by
encouraging positive attitudes, and for sure, this is a vitally important
part of astral hygiene; but although we might take great care to avoid
walking under ledges where pigeons are sitting, we could still be the
target of a bird flying overhead, and the chances are that the bird might
be from our own coop.
is an article not about negative emotions per se but about the opportunity
that exists in challenging their hegemony by taking action to dispel them.
The more frequently and the more purposefully that we challenge the
presence of negative emotion the more effective will our efforts become:
dirt, as we know, does not stick to a smooth or shiny surface. It is
passivity which allows a negative state to install itself.
emotion is a reaction which sets self against ‘other’, in the form of
people, things or situations. It reinforces the state of separation which
is the default setting for the personality. There will always be some part
of the personality that is invested in the barrier between self and other
created by a negative emotion whether it is anger, hatred, fear,
resentment, jealousy, envy or spite.
generate our own negative emotions and we can pick up the energy generated
in an emotional state by another although distinguishing between the two
may not be easy as the negative energy from another person may call up a
response of the same quality from within ourselves. Like attracts like on
the astral plane.
because we cannot see an emotional state in the way that we can see bird
excrement, we are never unaware of its presence, although people often do
claim this in order to avoid having to own and deal with it. The presence
of negative emotion, whether we have generated it or whether we have
picked it up, makes us feel uncomfortable and alienated from the world
around us and if we are willing to look, we are usually able to identify
the quality of the emotion we are hosting. Commonly the cause will be
identified as something done by another or a situation set up by another
and this is the beginning of the renunciation for responsibility for self.
pigeon on the ledge is ‘other’ also but if a bird dumps on us we take
action to clean ourselves up because pigeon mess does not add anything to
self. In fact we consider that it diminishes us.
emotion, however, stimulates and gratifies the separated self. We feel
justified in hosting it, we feel justified in targeting others with our
toxic energy and even though it is such an uncomfortable presence, we
accept it and feed it.
will never gain any degree of control over negative emotions, whatever
they are, for as long as we perceive that we need them, benefit from them
and are justified in indulging them. Accept that. And yet to the person
trying to move on in consciousness from separation, negative emotions are
a good deal more corrosive than pigeon mess. When we accept that,
we will try to reduce the amount of time we spend in the grip of a
we look honestly at ourselves and observe ourselves in relation to our
negative emotions we will recognise their habituality of the reaction. Of
course: they come from patterns within our own psyches and for as long as
those patterns are intact and fed with opportunity they will continue to
churn out the same old stuff. Weakening those patterns is slow work.
emotions especially anger, resentment and hatred may have a job to do:
they may have to alert us to the fact that we need to make changes either
in a specific situation or in our approach to life. The sooner we
recognise this and deal purposefully with the matter, the less time and
energy dedicated to receiving that message from the emotional level.
key to reducing negative emotion is empowerment. If we feel empowered to
change things about our lives and are alert to what needs attention, we
will not need to collect evidence from the emotional level in the form of
negative experiences. Passivity and inertia create ideal conditions for
negativity to take root.
with negative emotion therefore needs to be part of a broader strategy
that almost certainly will take time to put together and time to show
results, however long term the strategy may have to be. This does not
leave us helpless in the immediate term. We can challenge and aim to
banish each manifestation of negative energy as it shows, dealing the best
we can with the state in the circumstances in which it has arisen, in
order to reduce the amount of time that it has us in its grip. This
reduces the amount of time in which we are in a condition where we are
ourselves generating toxic energy, which should be the concern of anyone
aware of the interconnectedness of all things and a sense of
about the scale of the task that confronts us is essential. We do not wash
our hands expecting not to have to do it again. As we wash them we know
that we will do it again and again, and we are accepting of this: the
repetition is not an emotive issue. And it must be this way when we banish
of the problems experienced by disciples whose emotional bodies have
become sufficiently refined to receive higher energies, is that they will
frequently believe, especially after a particularly significant experience
or time spent in the presence of a teacher, that they have risen above the
lower stuff and are full now of only love and light. When powerful
negative emotions resurface, as they surely will, they feel as though they
have failed and become despondent, often reacting by abandoning the
efforts they have been making. In such cases the real problems are not the
negative emotions at all but spiritual pride and inappropriate
we will take the patterns which generate negative emotion to the grave
because dismantling them is not something that we will achieve in the
circumstances of everyday life where we are drawing constantly upon
personality consciousness which is cemented by association, but they need
not always control us and shape our lives. Damage limitation in the form
of reducing the amount of time we spend in a negative state is something
towards which we can usefully aim. This will release energy to be used
constructively. Damage limitation involves us in self control but not
repression: even though it is not outwardly expressed, full awareness and
close observation of this inner state is part of the discipline.
Appropriate action is then taken.
action will always involve:
exercises below are recommended for clearing the emotional body of the
debris of emotional states.
ritual - attributed to Mikhail Ivanov
be undertaken daily.
down a glass of water in a state of consciousness, saying first
greet thee, good, pure living water, faithful servant of God. Instil
purity in me’.
affirmation may also be repeated to good effect when showering. Ice cold
water which stimulates the circulation is to be recommended for moving on
insistent negative or obsessive thoughts. It is also good for the skin,
especially if there is a tendency to dry or chapped skin conditions.
Remember dirt does not stick to a smooth surface.*
exercise – attributed to Reshad Feild
be performed at the end of each day and especially at the close of a day
in which there have been shocks or other intense emotions.
on the back, visualise a film of water like a sheet which can be drawn up
the body from the feet. Re-run the day’s events in sequence from the
moment of waking and, at the same time, draw up the sheet of water. The
aim is to bring the sheet to the top of the head as the recapitulation
process reaches the present moment. The likelihood is that sleep will
intervene but persist with this aim.
In a career of saying unpopular things, I have never knowingly said anything as unpopular as emphasizing the importance of cold showers when dealing with negative emotion. My friends, what is your spirituality really worth to you if you cannot endure a few moments of physical discomfort in return for a release from the grip of toxic emotions? Remember to a person trying to move on from separation, negative emotions are as useless as pigeon shit and a good deal more corrosive. Just do it!