Healing Idealization

A visualization that is helpful in healing Idealization is a beating heart encased in a green circle or globe. Symbolically, this image can be simultaneously interpreted in two ways. On one side it is a radiant, unifying symbol of love that is grounded in a larger, growing context. On the other side, it is a symbol of vulnerability and conscious sacrifice where we strip away all that does not reflect who we are so that our higher purpose is revealed. It is interesting to note that the ideal of love as a bright, happy place is actually an Idealization. The real experience of love is the daily commitment to service, not only to your Creative Nature, but also to others around us.

The key to healing Idealization is not to be blind to what we want to see, but to focus on what is authentic, embracing opportunities to fulfill our self-stated mission. While ideals and aspirations are great, when we project them in any way on people, they become ideals to us. There is no problem believing that others can live up to certain ideals. Idealization occurs when we want to fix them into our version of how they should perform those ideals. The more we get caught in this fixation, the less we can confront the total truth of an individual. This means that one of the primary indicators that we are in Idealization is seeing that someone is good or bad, but not both. When we Idealize an individual, and they perform in a way that we do not agree with, it encourages us to hammer them because it increases our fear and doubt. Idealization hides the fear and doubt we experience, but justifies making them objects or subjects to control.

One way to heal Idealization is to embrace Passionate Indifference. We want is to be passionate about our process while being indifferent to the outcome. When we attach the outcome to the process, it creates anxiety and tension. We either compromise the outcome by wondering how we got to this place, or compromise the process by fixating on the outcome and trying to serve both the process and the outcome. In the end we get less of each. When we fixate on the outcome, the goal is external and present, while it should be passionate and present in the moment. When fixated on the process, nothing we do is enough, amplifying our frustration when others do not do exactly what we expect. In this circumstance, we find ourselves trying to avoid the tension by hoping that things will easily work out. Passionate Indifference supports us by being present in the moment so we can act without fear of compromise. By disconnecting from the tension, it relieves the Anxiety permitting us to do what is best in the moment. Between process and outcome, it is HA’s recommendation to focus on process and let the outcome evolve or change to match the circumstances. We can then be surprised when the result is actually better that the outcome originally envisioned. When this occurs, we grow to accept that fluidity and responsiveness is much more effective than fixed expectations and any attempt to be perfect. It also becomes clear that unconscious tension drives us to extreme actions or drama that is often counter-productive.

Why do we tend to limit our experiences of Pleasure, Power and Passion? The answer is that our Attachments and Positions, as well as our Projections about our experiences, eliminate our ability to embody our experience. In other words, our past Fears and Desires keep us from being present to our natural Beauty, Truth and Goodness. These elements increase our sense of spaciousness and our ability to be present with our experience. What keeps us stuck is our Fear that we will become submerged in conflict, both internal and external. This is why we always believe that others will not live up to creative possibilities with us. It is also why we tend to distrust Pleasure, Power and Passion in our lives.

When we pierce the veil of Idealization, we give birth to our Creative Nature and Context. This allows us to locate our Creative Self outside of our Personality prescriptions, which includes Imprinting, Pretenses and Defenses. Our Personality Self includes everything we need to become conscious. Our Personality contains our drive for Safety, Security and Success allowing us to effectively stand alone. Its importance diminishes as we assert our Creative Nature. The objective of our Creative Nature is to learn how to bring out the best in our selves and the best in others. When we take ownership of our Creative Nature, it first shows up as the need to assert our own creative patterns, pushing us to find a way to best contribute so that others recognize and respond to our offerings. 

Idealization is the use of Objectification and Subjectification to prove that we are much more clever than others suspect. The more we project Goodness onto others and deny it within ourselves, or do the reverse, the more we are entangled with others and need them for validation. Most of the time, we do not even see that people are unlikely to acknowledge us when they feel we are in a higher position of power. The frightening issue is that Idealization is an attempt to subconsciously claim the high ground by establishing the points of reference between us. We think that if we can define the assumptions of a relationship, then we can manipulate the circumstances to our benefit. The thing that people do not realize is that these attempts at manipulation always get turned around because the perceived advantages never last very long. We always end up having to compensate for a new perception our partner has. It always comes from a static need to feel superior or in control. The truth is, no one is in control and it is a mess. The only way to beat Idealization is not to do it. We validate that we are not doing it by cleaning house, making sure we are not doing Excitement, Intensity or Anxiety patterns anywhere. These patterns indicate that we are still caught in some past Defensive Distortions.

Indicators that we are negatively caught on the Idealization level are Self-Pity, Suspicion and a Loving Acceptance of our partner. Self-Pity is based on the perception that we are constantly being tested for our commitment to our aspirations. Unfortunately, we find that people around us are not committed to the same degree and we feel victimized by their presence. Most of the time, we are caught up in our Thoughts and cannot understand why others do not have similar Motives. The core issue is that others do not see things in the same way we do, which causes us to feel hopeless and disconnected. We need to learn how to turn this deeper interest in ourselves into an interest in others in order to be more compassionate. On a Personality level, we need to become more Passionately Indifferent; being passionate about the process but indifferent to the outcome. The key objective is not to pay attention to what is nonessential, but to re-focus our attention on how we can be of service.

Since we have been hurt many times before, we can get caught up in analyzing everything based on being Suspicious. At the core, this issue is about not being able to distinguish the truth of our experience from lies we tell, resulting in not having the skill to identify what is good or bad in others. This experience of constant doubt undermines everything that we attempt to build in these relationships. This is particularly true for individuals with a Disarming Defense style. We need to affirm our loving nature to be able to see the loving nature in others. We need to honor that everyone has a choice to live their lives in their own way and therefore follow their own path. If we cannot honor ourselves and be clear about our commitment to service, then we cannot see the courageous nature of others and trust their experience. Meaning, we need to be the heroes we want to be, and be able to see the heroic nature of our partners as well.

We overcome Self-Pity and Suspicion by loving others. Understanding who they are while being curious about what they are doing to improve themselves can be illuminating. Aspirational striving is what distinguishes the courageous from the suspicious. It makes no sense to be suspicious of individuals who are trying to be better people. It also makes no sense to doubt yourself and the people close to you if they are inspiring you. The natural commitment to express Radiant Self-Unifying love allows us to move beyond these lower level perceptions to finding better ways for us to show up.

When we Idealize, we are often caught between the polarities of right and wrong. When we examine Skills, it is easier initially to see a lack of skills by recognizing what is not working within us. For example, we get Serious when we are not Playful, or Confused when we become overly identified with our Personality. When we are not being Autonomous, we are Co-Dependent. When we are not being Paradoxical, we overdo Certainty. The opposite of Intuitive Discrimination is Judgment. The opposite of Intimacy is Rejection. When we are not doing Mutual Learning, we get caught in Unilateral Action. Untrustworthiness is the result of not trusting our body’s natural discernment capabilities. When we minimize growth, we get caught in Inertia and lose all momentum. We can round out this group of Skills by recognizing that the opposite of Aliveness is Excitement and the opposite of Wisdom is Intensity. If we possessed these Skills, we would not have negative experiences in our lives. Most usually do not develop more than three to five skills, limiting our ability to meet others in a mutually supportive way.

Looking at this group of Skills Gone Wrong, we whimsically came up with what they would be called in terms of groupings. The Instinctive Skills we entitled Losing Ourselves Skills because they compromise us the most. On the Intellectual Level, we call them Enmeshment Skills where we cannot distinguish our truth from others. The Idealized Skills are called Isolation Skills, which are ways to push people away, even while appearing conscious and open. The Intuitive Level is called Misalignment Skills because we are consciously doing what we know will not work to try to make others pay attention to us. On the Masculine side, we call these Skills Ugly Pleasure because they are about pissing others off while being unaccountable for the results. On the Feminine side, we call them Non-Acceptance Skills because we are denying ourselves the skills we need to distinguish what is real and what is false. Finally, the integration process of Masculine and Feminine is where we confront the choice, “Do we want to show up or not?” calling them No Self Expression Skills.

If we wanted to grow the most, we would be looking at what repulses us in our partners and investigating why. We would also recognize that what we project on our partners is what we are denying in ourselves, which usually what makes us feel the most uncomfortable. The more we could engage this discomfort and unearth the problems, the more likely we would be able to grow, with our partner, at this level of relationship. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your viewpoint, the partners we choose usually have enough repulsion to go around. It makes us more mature and Transpersonal when we become more indifferent to these repulsions. The best way to get there is to consciously engage them so we can make clear choices about how we will heal them.

Each of us is in a natural development process to embody all of our Skills. It is only our discomfort in accepting our larger Creative Nature that is the primary obstacle to our growth. This discomfort significantly reduces the Pleasure, Creative Power and Passion in our life experience. Ironically, partners with greater Skills have more flexibility to bring out the best in their partners. Individuals with less ownership of their Relationship Skills often find themselves at the effect of their unwillingness to deal with new possibilities. This means that operating with true equality would allow both partners to bring out the best in all situations. The more inequality exists, the more both parties suffer in different ways. The more enabled partner suffers because no one can see and accept them completely, and therefore the best is not brought out in them. The person less embodied in skills suffers because they always feel that their partner has more capacity, therefore putting them in a more stressful response situation. Again, making comparisons limits growth.

When we discussed the actual Skills, we grouped them in terms of their main objective. For example, on the Instinctive level, it is about our gender development process, Aliveness representing the masculine and Wisdom representing the feminine, and Growth representing the unification of both. On the Intellectual level, it is about our individuation as people. On this level, we use Playfulness and Personality Detachment to facilitate the development of Autonomy (or harmless truth-telling). As you can see, these Skills support us in building relationships where we can count on our partners. On the Idealized level, it is about Connection Skills, which are Paradox and Intuitive Discrimination coming together to create greater Intimacy. Finally, on the Intuitive level, we call them Higher Alignment Skills because they are about optimizing our Creative Nature so that we develop greater resourcefulness in working with others. At this level, it is Mutual Learning with Physical Discernment that helps manifest Co-Creativity. To make this process more interesting, we have included the larger virtues that show up when we embody these Skills.

At the heart of Level 3 is the concept of Virtue. What drives us to remake our world in our own image? When we discover others who amplify our aspirations and encourage us to find virtue in our way of living, it is a very powerful force. Some misuse this force and direct it into fixed channels, seeking to rebuild the perceived glory of the past. Extremes of this are terrorists. Many are only reactionaries who want to maintain traditions and conservative values. With the quickening of our development and the intensification of our learning, they fear the change of being out of control.

What is not appreciated is that humanity and the world are living organisms that need to grow and evolve or die. This suggests that we must remake our virtues for the Aquarian Age. Our aspirations and ideals are great, as long as we do not become crystallized and defined by them. The more we hold onto the past, the more we limit our opportunities. Being proactive about our Desires is a great thing. It confronts us to deal with what is sustainable (locally, regionally and in the world as a whole). When we shift from personal to Transpersonal Desires it means making sure that what we are doing does not harm or interfere creatively with others. What we seek are Transpersonal desires that amplify and enhance each other. This is not as difficult as we think, because as a whole, most of our desires as humans are similar.

Intimacy is a key Relationship Skill. Like Autonomy, we need to manifest Intimacy with others because, ultimately, it is a shared experience. This means that even if we could create the Intimacy we wanted, in some situations, it would always be limited if we were not willing to deal with the unexpected or unanticipated. What makes Intimacy work is the ability to bring out new possibilities in each other. Without this, there is no magic in Intimacy. Our recommendation is to start with Personal Intimacy because everyone needs to recognize when they need to say “No.” This seems to be a real problem in our society because we end up defining ourselves in terms of others and do not know how to enforce appropriate boundaries. Now that we have a better understanding of Autonomy, we can deal with Intimacy, as it is its mirror reflection. When we say no, it simply means that this does not work. It is not necessarily a reflection of who we are with, or even a condemnation of what is going on. It is merely about whether it is appropriate at this time and this place. We need to be able to say no before we can truly say yes.

Intimacy is an unexpected, or new aspect that is being introduced in the connection with another. We are either seeing a new possibility in our partner who reflects us, or falling in love with ourselves as reflected in our partner. When we are seeing things from our perspective, and valuing how others contribute to us in some new way, we are expressing personal Intimacy. When we are seeing things from another’s perspective and valuing how we contribute to them in some way, this is Transpersonal Intimacy. Imagine knowing how to connect with others that brings out the best in them. This is an example of personal Intimacy where we appreciate an aspect of ourselves interacting with another that enhances them. Consider the kinds of friends that bring out the best in us. What levels of confidence do we respond to most? For some of us, it is their capacity to generate their own safety, security or authentic expression that inspires or uplifts us. For others, it is their personality traits or qualities: a sense of humor, assertiveness, humility, resourcefulness, intelligence, intuition, social gracefulness, or even dancing ability. This is why we recommend getting to know a wide variety of individuals to see what the possibilities are for personal Intimacy. This does not have to be limited to romantic partners, it could be friends, business associates or even family members.

Interpersonal Intimacy is the opposite side of this experience. What do we do to make it easy for others to relate to us? How available and committed are we to the friends, lovers, and partners we have currently? Most individuals try not to get overwhelmed by the demands of others, and limiting relationships based on minimizing their availability. In our search for the appropriate balance between giving and receiving, having time for ourselves or with our partner, or just learning how to make the best choices for our self at any particular time, opens us up to how the process of Intimacy is almost as important as the content. Some people talk about interpersonal intimacy and about how they want to be cared for. They long for somebody who has the right sense of timing, touch and sensitivity to address what is going on with them. Interpersonal Intimacy likes to be surprised by less structured responses where the quality of the connection and the ability of the partner to respond matters more than what they are doing together.

Bringing together these two elements so that we are making choices that work for us demands more attention and presence to the connection with others. The more we love ourselves, the less we focus on what we are getting so we can be delighted by what we are giving. Gradually, we come to realize there is more joy in giving than receiving. In some relationships, it becomes part of the ritual to find new ways to give to their partner. This tells us that the relationship is well balanced and has accumulated a large emotional bank account so any problems that arise will not derail the relationship. An obstacle to developing this perspective is that if we are addicted to love or sex, this prevents us from actually calibrating to others as they are in the moment. As long as we are operating with personal addictions, we are robbed of Intimacy with our partner since we are not fully showing up.

Transpersonal Intimacy is when we desire nothing from others that could not be given to us by someone else. Rather than fixating on what we need, it is more important to be who we are, being with partners who have little or no expectation of how it should be. What we are doing is shifting from making the relationship ‘special’ to having the relationship ‘be’ special through our deeply human connection. What tends to ruin our relationships is creating stories that separate us from the experience. These stories often become substitutes for the new experiences that would deepen us. The objective here is to become more fulfilled by the little things we do with others that transform our life. In other words, by focusing on another and making them an important part of our life, we realize it enhances the choices we make distinguishing the quality of love we experience.

The importance of Relationship Skills can be seen in the area of Intimacy when we start energetically placing this Skill in the CNG. Like all other Skills, if we are aware of it, it becomes a resource that both parties can utilize in the relationship. It is our expanding Context where our resources merge, that starts to define the real unity and expression of the relationship. The power of Skills is greatly enhanced when we start operating from the top Intuitive levels of Motives and Attractions. Universal Dominion, Mutual Accomplishment and Conscious Participation help us to develop an awareness to respond to our partner in an uplifting manner. The Attractions of Aliveness, Wisdom and Awareness begin to have an impact on bringing people into the type of conversations we want. The more we can trust our own experience and work with others in the CNG space, the more the impact of Skills will be amplified in all our relationships.

We know that we are not using Relationship Skills well when we get caught up in self-pity or suspicion of others. While we do not want to be attached or fixed in our perspective about how things should be, it is natural to be curious and adventurous in our ability to bring up new possibilities. When we resist this, or with our partner, it indicates we have reached an Upper Boundary Limit and our Idealization is actually keeping us from accepting our full authentic Goodness. Let us be compassionate and understanding with ourselves and learn that we should only trust partners to the degree we are willing to trust ourselves. Learning where our boundaries are in terms of Autonomy and Intimacy are critical to making this work.

With Self Love and a commitment to putting our partner first, we move beyond our self-perception to metaphorically encompass the universe. Our commitment supports us by establishing a link to what we want, and bringing it into our heart. A better way of thinking about it is bringing our heart’s love into the CNG so we can consciously connect with each other. Hopefully we will be able to develop the bonds of Intent, Content and Context in the CNG. Being present with our Self in based on these bonds remaining uncompromised. It is these bonds that make us available to others. When we connect to them in the CNG we are committed. It feels as if the purpose of the universe is flowing through us and back into the World. When this occurs the CNG feels more spacious and powerful.

There are three ways we manipulate our image of Goodness to make others sympathetic to us. We can Deny Anxiety, Adopt it, or Control it. When we Deny Anxiety, it is a call for help. We want others to prove to us that they are committed to us, before we are willing to be available to them. We hide our heartlessness and fanaticism as indignation, disparagement and rejection, keeping others from getting comfortable with us. Until we break through, they are always suggesting that we are not committed to them. When we Adopt Anxiety, it means that we use it as an excuse to be made wrong. We tend to use judgments, resentment, and playing indifferent as a response to others apparent abuse. We need some abuse by others to justify our behavior. When we Control Anxiety, we attempt to minimize others’ use of it by threatening to distance from them if they do not knock it off. We use despair, faint-heartedness, and certainty as a way to minimize the impact of Anxiety upon us. Underneath, we could be self-destructive because of the frustration we feel at being at the effect of others. Ironically, we’re usually considered indifferent by appearing challenging to others. What we are learning is to connect our inner experience to our outer experience of desire in order to neutralize these pairs of opposites.

We experience anxiety whenever a person does not agree with our self-perceived image. This means our image is under attack. While feminine energies are more susceptible to intrusive discounting or denial of their rights, all Expressions are susceptible to non-acceptance by others. Most individuals respond by trying to provide more information to the person discounting them, not realizing that the distortions projected at them are usually based on instinctive or emotional disaffiliation patterns.  Distortions such as Imprinting, Pretenses and Defenses all create fixed ways of interacting with others that limit the way we can connect. Finally, many people do not trust what an individual says to clarify the misperceptions that are challenged, due to the presence of Distortions. The result is a subtle form of disaffiliation, which needs these issues to be overcome so that there is a reason (and a way) to connect to an individual. Otherwise, the Anxiety-provoking interactions will continue.

While Anxiety also occurs on Level 1, at Level 3 it becomes a greater anxiety-producing process because we are more open to seeing beyond Objectification and Subjectification patterns. This heightened Anxiety is an indication that we have integrated our body-mind framework more. Some people go through a whole breakdown or breakthrough crisis where they need to remake their whole life in order to find a greater harmonic balance within themselves. We call this the Personality Integration phase. Some people call this a spiritual healing crisis, where we learn to deal with the cloud of our own unknowing. A lot of times, mid-life crises are the result of finding it difficult to shift beyond our Secondary Creative Expression. The internal conflict between our Creative Nature and our programmed safety and security patterns is what creates the major Anxiety at this level. In either situation, this transition can be challenging because our personal identity has to shift out of a defensive framework to a place of Creative affirmation.

Eliminating Defensive Distortions

A Common Neutral Ground allows us to acknowledge and deal with the three distortions of Objectification, Subjectification and Idealization, which minimize Life, Light and Love. Objectification minimizes our Life Expression, Subjectification minimizes our Light or Wisdom, and Idealization minimizes our ability to love either ourselves or others, or both. While each individual may struggle with a different mix of these distortions, we all have one or two of these blindsides. Common Neutral Ground (CNG) provides us with an experiential framework helping us identify these distortions and to notice where we experience pressures or deny options. This tells us what we need to affirm in our self and our partner to improve our Creative Flow with each other. The more knowledgeably we build and interact through CNG, the easier it is to see where we hold back, noticing the impact on others. We are able to identify what is needed and focus attention on solving problems as they arise. We get to see our improvement over time, because we are becoming more congruent and present with our self and others.

Objectification creates a rigid outer structure that relies on propriety and agreement to effectively function. Any chaos or questioning of traditions makes objectified individuals uncomfortable. The path of least resistance is to accept that “whatever we see must be true,” leading us to take things at face value. This not only interferes with our assessment of others, but also keeps us ignorant about discontinuities within ourselves. In this way, we disregard the inconsistencies between what we think and say or between outer appearances and the underlying reality we experience. In short, we learn to not notice things that would lead us to question our assumptions. The immediate impact is that we are often confused and non-committal, because we cannot see a clear path to where we want to go. The long-term impact is that we go along to get along, making us easily forgettable as we try to adjust to everyone else. In effect, we become wallflowers.

Subjectification amplifies all defensive patterns in different ways. It makes Distant Defense Style individuals more stubborn, imperious and adamant. It makes Dynamic Defense Style individuals more arrogant, self serving and determined to do what they want. It makes Disarming Defense Style individuals more covert and opinionated and unwilling to confront others even if they are obviously acting out their Fears and Desires. It makes Disnamic Defense Style individuals sensitive to taking opposite points of view so they are better positioned to get what they want. In these ways, Subjectification creates an artificial backbone where self-importance grows and the need to prove that we are right becomes critical to our self-image. This is why it is not enough to win, we also need to demonstrate conclusively that others are misguided failures.

Subjectification is more obviously an ego trip. It is a self-validated exploration of circular ideas and supportive emotions that reinforce the possibility that we are bigger than we actually are. When we start seeing our more inclusive truth, it undermines our Defensive Subjectification process. Just the ability to admit what we do not know opens us up to examine what we do know. If we started from this assumption most of the time, we would not be Subjectifying anyone or anything. Most importantly, we would come across as confident and clear about what we know, instead of arrogant. There is nothing egoic about admitting where we are or what we know. There is only our desire to amplify this sense of power so we can hold it like a club over others. What we need to remember is that clubbing people does not make us popular or encourage people to listen to us. The clearer we are with our Content, and the more we accept ourselves as we truly are, the more natural influence we have over people who are more conscious. The more we grasp at what we know and feel we need to prove, the more it escapes our grasp.

Idealization is where we live in a world of potential while wearing rose-colored glasses. Everything is better than we expect… Until we get disappointed. Fortunately, we are constantly trying to see the positive in every situation, which distracts us from our constant disappointments. Some of us use faith and beliefs to artificially build our capacity to see the Goodness in others. This blinds us to the obvious problems we find difficult to talk about. Most importantly, we end up not agreeing on how we want to get to the same goal. The more people attempt to find their own unique solutions without conferring with others, the more conflicts occur. We end up blaming others rather than trying to find a mutual solution. Some would say Idealization just gets our hopes up in time to see us crash to the degree of our denial. Until we learn to give up the ideal of hope, we will not see the true Goodness in people.

When Objectification overlaps Idealization, we use our stories to reset our own self-perspective in relationship. This means we get caught up in Romantic Mythology because our fantasies merge with our Idealization patterns. We can see this when we need others to accept our perceptions of ourselves to make romantic relationships work. This makes us more resistant to change. Until we have greater inner and outer clarity around our Desires, we feel trapped. When Subjectification overlaps Idealization, we keep seeking reasons and principles for why things work the way they do. This means we become frozen in our Thoughts about what is going on and we are at a loss as to how to engage others. The more we seek fixed answers to a changing process, the more Intensity it creates. This is greatly amplified when we also need certainty, or use Seduction to convince others that we are right. Usually, we become fixated about our perceptions of how it is, and act out our experiences with great drama. The solution is to engage the paradox of how our fears are being projected onto our partners because we are unwilling to accept them. When Objectification and Subjectification combine and overlap, we are disconnected to others and yet need them to feel comfortable engaging with them. In effect, our attachment to Roles and being properly appropriate requires them to play along with our games, or else they leave the relationship. The qualities that indicate this overlap are Self-Centeredness and Inertia. To heal this, we need to release our sense of isolation and practice playfulness without the expectation that anything will change.

Whenever we are caught in a defensive distortion (Objectification, Subjectification, Idealization), it causes reactions with our partners or groups that creates Energy Shifting, Time Shifting or Space Shifting. Energy Shifting is where our Fears are projected onto others, creating Inertia. When someone is doing Energy Shifting, they unconsciously drag everyone else down. This is because Objectification prevents everyone from expressing his or her inner creative beauty. This is an obvious shift from Aliveness to Excitement. Time Shifting is where our Desires are imposed on others, creating Resistance. When someone is doing Time Shifting, they are polarized and always taking a devil’s advocate position. This is because they have taken partial positions about their Truth that conflict with the Truth of others. This is an obvious shift from Wisdom to Intensity. Space Shifting is where our creative aspirations or personal lessons interfere with partners or groups Intentions. With Space Shifting, there is always confusion and an unwillingness to integrate the complete experience. This demonstrates how Idealization reduces our ability to see and accept our Goodness with others. The obvious shift is from Awareness to Anxiety. Being able to talk about these patterns allows us to see where our issues are limiting others. In this discussion, we need to recognize where our incomplete issues are located: in our space, the Common Ground, or their space.

The distortions of Objectification, Subjectification and Idealization are the unconscious distortions that cover up our unexamined Motivations, Attractions and lack of Relationship Skills. The problem is that when we seek to recreate the past (in a better way) we argue for our limitations by acting through hidden Motives. We also resist owning our Attractions and discussing them with others. Finally, each Relationship Skill is a doorway connecting us to a conscious relationship. The more doorways we establish in common, the more stable our relationship. Instinctive, Intellectual and Idealized Motives lead us to build Attachments, Positions, and projections in order to create some form of connection. Our Defensive Distortions keep us from accepting our own growth and natural Well Being. This unconsciously eliminates our best creative choices.

Idealization is further amplified when we are confused about Love. Many individuals in our society mix and match different types of understandings when discussing Love. On the Instinctive level (1st level), love is a function of sexuality, because we are convinced that we love someone due to the hormonal rush associated with sex. On the Intellectual level (2nd level) we look for reasons and actions to prove we are loved. This is where our conditional forms of love regarding Protective, Directive and Quid-Pro-Quo exchanges become symbolic of Love (similar to flowers and chocolate). These conditional expressions of Love reflect how we think we can do love behaviorally (by protecting, directing or doing as much for our partners as they do for us). It is all about effort rather than being present to a partner.

We also have Idealistic expressions of Love (3rd level) where we romanticize the commitment our partner makes because they are Infinite, Eternal and Committed expressions of service. We suggest that each of these limited expressions of love is an indicator of commitment in a romantic setting, which means that we are fixated on one person being everything we need them to be, this is doomed to failure. Instead, the reality is that we have different types of love for different types of people, which begins to open us up to the highest expressions of love. Love is an expression of sharing and communing without Attachments, Positions or Projections. This is why we say Love is a Radiating, Self-Unifying experience. It comes from an internal experience of abundance where affirming ourselves is affirming to others.  

Wanting a co-connected experience where others experience our Passion and we experience theirs is the tertiary driver of friendship and romantic relationship. The core quality we seek is conscious Intimacy. We get to that Intimacy by making better choices about what we share and do not share. Recognizing the Paradox that there are no set answers to anything, Intimacy is an unfolding process where there is always more to discover and learn. If it is fixed in nature, it is not Intimacy. Vulnerability is a natural process when we are intimate with another. If we are not vulnerable, we are not consciously being Intimate. Sharing vulnerability is actually a strength that shows that you have reached a level of maturity in relationships. Only people who have realized this are able to be a conscious partner. All others are still in process.

It is at the Partners in Process stage where we begin to question all of our assumptions. By questioning these assumptions, we recognize that in the past we have forced certain circumstances with partners that effectively terminated the relationship. Now we recognize that we could have been more open and flexible, but we were just too rigid. We did not know how to give our self the room to explore the options. More importantly, we did not deeply question what was motivating our partners and why they felt so agitated about the process. It would have also been helpful if we could have investigated our own agitation and found a more flexible, fluid way of responding to them. A lot of relationship opportunities at this level do not mature because we are not willing to investigate.

Creative Flow is one of the best indicators that we are engaging new possibilities at Level 3. When we operate in our defenses, we impede flow because we distance ourselves from others. By using the CNG space in a more conscious way, we allow our consciousness to come together with others’ so we can directly experience moment-to-moment how we are interacting. Creative Flow is greatly enhanced because it is a sharing of creativity and not just Positions, Attachments and Projections. It is not about our personality but rather about who we are as a Creative Being. Our focus shifts from talking about ourselves to talking about how we can connect with others. This is why relationships become more important at this level. Athena Staik, PhD discusses in her article, “Three Reasons to Cultivate a Consciousness of Optimal Thinking-Feeling” how a consciously optimistic mind is healthy and will increase the chances of success in any endeavor. What makes this a possibility is a greater sense of integration and a willingness to embrace differences.

Some indications that we are caught in the Partners in Process level are the Skills we use to open up creative opportunities. The Skills of Paradox, Intuitive Discrimination and Intimacy are all central to this issue. With Paradox, we come to recognize that there are no fixed truths that do not have interesting, counterbalancing perspectives. The idea that we could know our truth without it being illuminated by different perspectives is to make truth overly simplistic. All relationship truths have interesting Paradoxes involved. Intuitive Discrimination further amplifies Paradox by suggesting that there is a continuum of possibilities and that any choice on this continuum can work. We end up having preferences based on our Defenses and beliefs about what would be best for us. Unfortunately, these perspectives create imbalances where we are not able to see the wholeness or continuum of options, blinding us to the possibilities that can serve us and those around us. Intimacy is more than superficial niceness. Intimacy is also more than sexual, social, or relationship-oriented because it is about opening up and sharing how we love someone and how we appreciate their response to our love. On this level, without these three elements, we would find ourselves uninterested in relationships.

One of the biggest benefits of finding more aligned partners is that they will most likely have a common Authentic Life Expression. This greatly deepens our ability to drop a lot of our personality considerations, enabling us to become more creatively transpersonal. Facilitating this process is our Personality Integration where we complete the process of unifying our Sensations and Feelings, then our Emotions and Thoughts. Finally, we begin to unify our Body and Mind as reflected by the integrations of Feelings and Emotions. This process of integrating the various experiential Modalities is what we call Personality Integration. This is greatly assisted by identifying with our Primary Creative Expression, allowing us to become more centralized in our expression, assuring no extraneous or confusing activity. By affirming our higher Creativity and investing in our Authentic Life Expression, we learn that our lower personality or Secondary Creative Expression was actually a prelude to a greater integrated and active form of expression.

What would it be like to step into the possibility of expressing our experience and getting honored for it? How can we learn to accept our experience and no longer be controlled by it? What we first must do is accept the variety and diversity of our Nature and, second, see how we can unify it into one common sense of being by clearing out areas of denial and repression. The real importance of being present with our experiential Modalities (Sensations, Feelings, Emotions and Thoughts) is that we learn to integrate and accept our experience as it is. Then, we will not take on the experience of others and/or deny our own perspective, meaning that we will not react and build resentment from being around others.

Our personality is the separative ‘I’ experience we use to distinguish who we are from others. It has been operating on the first three levels of CNG embodiment and represents our egoic need for self-importance. With all the prevailing uncertainty at this 3rd level, we get tired of being at the affect of others. This creates cycles of ups and downs regarding our self worth and ability to love. We come to realize that we need to love ourselves to be able to fully love othersy. This awakens us to the limited way we have loved others for their looks, their complementary nature or how much they agree with our values. ‘Looks’ reflect our Attachments to appearances (Level 1). Choosing opposites (falling in love with an Opposite-Defense individual) reflects our complementary defensive Positions with each other (Level 2). Seeking agreement for our values reflects falling in love with the idea that our partner will heal us (Level 3). Until we supersede these love-limiting perspectives, there is no way to accept Radiant Self-Unifying Love, which occurs at Level 4.

Since our personality lives in the past and attempts to create a better future, it is in its own best interest to see what it wants to see and to ignore everything else. What is important about this is that there are three distortions (Objectification, Subjectification and Idealization) that our personality uses to justify its existence. Without realizing it, when we get caught in these distortions, we see what we need and want to see, and we minimize reflecting upon who we are. This gives us a very narrow perspective about our own Creativity and gifts. When we start realizing that we can handle our own Safety, Security and Well-Being, we no longer need the personality to be in charge. Instead, our Creative Nature can be in charge and direct the personality to do its own job (take care of the day-to-day operations in our life).

The personality likes the perception of certainty (even if it is false) because chaos undermines its power to project itself into the future. As a result, the personality systematically sabotages its own perceptions when these perceptions challenge the status quo or go against the ‘anointed’ story of our life. In effect, the personality tries to monitor our growth so we minimize the chances of failure. Unfortunately, this usually ends up eliminating growth. The way to break out of personality delusions (in Hinduism called Maya, Glamour and Illusion) is to rigorously examine and validate our own experience from the inside out. When we use external frameworks like defenses or pretenses to justify our responses, we end up suffocating our own Creative Destiny. When Fears and repressed Desires show up, it is important to notice what they are protecting—so that perceptions of personal Safety and Security do not prevent us from being present and experiencing our Authentic Nature.

The irony of this level is that the more we take responsibility for ourselves, the more curious we are about how others experience things. Opening the door to our own inner motivations allows us to notice the motivations of others. Instead of our preconceived ideas, we actually start getting real insight because we listen more to others. This re-orientation process takes us out of a dark, brooding and dramatic place into the light of day, where we can just be ourselves. One of the major indicators of this shift is that we do not care so much about what others think about us. Instead, we focus on how some individuals are actually naturally better at connecting with us than others. We also discover things about vibration and energetic resonance where Creativity occurs easily when we are around people who we are more aligned with.

Personality Integration allows us to awaken to the possibility that there are partners out there who can mirror and align with us better than others. While we want to believe that everyone is as adaptive and open as we are, at the Level 3 stage, we discover this is not as true as we had hoped. When Idealizing, we tend to choose partners who are not able to meet us or whom we cannot fully engage. Many times this is commonly articulated as ‘being out of our league’. Most individuals sabotage themselves when things get better or ‘too good’. We Idealize a partner and believe they are much better than they are which prevents us from approaching them, or we do not pay attention to a great partner right in front of us. The Idealization trap, where we try to artificially hold individuals as equals without realizing their differences from us in motivations and capacity, is an easy way for us to make ourselves wrong. We need to recognize that when people can meet us and resonate with us, it tells us that there is a possibility. When we do not have this experience, we need to learn to move on. Otherwise it promotes false hope. Ultimately, we may not find the best partners because we do not expect much. It’s called settling.

Are we able to deal with our own Upper Boundary limits for improving our choices? Instead of looking at things from a black and white perspective, we need to see the benefits of progress. We need to recognize that what makes a great partner is not necessarily their past, but how they can creatively operate with us. We need to use ‘Be Withs’ and creative projects to explore what works for us, and how that does or does not mirror the partners we are engaging. Until we accept where we are, we cannot effectively improve the way we are operating. This process allows us to effectively be present to partners on three levels. First, it allows us to sense their experiences so we can be more empathetic and compassionate with them. Second, it opens the floodgates for them to experience our love for them. Third, through Co-Measurement, we can improve and expand the results we generate. Idealization separates us from these possibilities, and/or makes our life more erratic and unpredictable.

When we experience Aliveness (Sensations and Feelings), we can be motivated by Pleasure. Unfortunately, our Imprinting and conditioning limit how much Aliveness we can experience, reducing our ability to appreciate Beauty and accept Pleasure. We experience Wisdom (by paying attention to our Emotions and Thoughts), and are uplifted by Truth and Creative Power. As long as we are trapped in our Defenses, it is impossible to see our own Light and able to share it with others. When we experience Awareness (paying attention to our Feelings and Emotions), we can honor our Creativity and Passion.

The personality seeking to control its experience does not want to trust that the Universe can guide us or support us. All of the personality’s tools are isolating and do not encourage us to grow. Instead, we become more secretive and, because we are convinced that there must be a few things wrong with us, we must hide who we are. What we need to do is investigate and explore our reality, operating from the premise that there is nothing we can experience or learn that would not be valuable. We need to be more inclusive and trust our own creative impulses so that the risks we take can become personal extensions of our creative nature. Instead of our personality being afraid of the openness, we need to embrace openness to actively create new perceptions of ourselves. We call this process Transfiguration.

As long as we are caught up in Pretenses, we are distracted from our Creative Nature, preventing us from expressing higher forms of Love. The principles delineated here are the same principles that govern the operation of our metaphorical vehicles. The problem has been that we did not know how to pay attention or calibrate to differences in perception, which elevate our Creative Nature. Now we realize that we do not need to worry about differences in perception if we have some degree of alignment in Context (which is having a common purpose). This is why, as we shift from our personality to Creative frameworks, we become more tolerant of differences in perspective as we become more spacious in our Being. Common Neutral Ground is ultimately a framework for bringing together Life, Light and Love, not only from within us, but also with others.

We limit the Belief in our Beauty, Truth and Goodness because we fear being creatively out of control. Beauty, Truth and Goodness would empower our creativity in both personal and transpersonal ways. Transpersonal means that our experience includes perspectives that go beyond what is personally meaningful to us. For example, we could open up to Life, Light and Love energies, which would connect us to our environment and how others are contributing to it or not. Discussions about this would be transpersonal Desires or Lessons. Personal Lessons are where we live in an artificially diminished reality, based on our personality Fears and Desires. The more we focus ourselves on a personal level, the more we constrict our creative possibilities. Our Common Neutral Ground can be a guide to our unfolding, encouraging us to take risks in expressing ourselves. Lacking a CNG, we experience limited flow and create distortions, throttling our evolution. The more we listen to and accept the Fears and repressed Desires of our personality mechanism, the more isolated and separate we feel, locking us into the personal level. In this state of isolation we do not realize our negative impact on others. This leads us to act out our reactions rather than to be self-reflective about them.

We come to realize how much we have been projecting our incompleteness or Fears and repressed Desires upon others. We suddenly realize that our vehicle, which became a plane, actually has an airtight oxygen system allowing us to go beyond the Earth’s atmosphere! This metaphor speaks to the fact that we learn to see in others what we are first able to acknowledge in ourselves. What kept our vehicle from becoming a spacecraft was our Idealization. Idealization is the attachment to the images of others. Here we put people on pedestals or tear them down depending on what is ‘trending’, without willing to simultaneously view both the good and the bad. Idealization is validated by the sensation of Anxiety. We are concerned about what others think of us and constantly need affirmation of our importance in order to justify our judgment of them. We allow ourselves to benefit from our airtight, oxygenated capsule by recognizing that we need to be passionately indifferent about external outcomes. This requires us to operate from our Heart’s Desire, while realizing that the Universe has its own plans, of which we are merely one part.

As the diagram indicates, each level of CNG embodiment opens the door to greater alignment. We begin with Connection, and then move up through Communication, Co-Measurement, Communion, Purpose, Community and Creative Being. Creative Being is first established when we become self-reflective of our own process and Intent. This is usually at the end of the Co-Measurement level. We need to declare ourselves as Co-Creative Beings in order to be in Co-Measurement, even if we do not know what we have to contribute. This means that Co-Measurement is a generalized undertaking, where we explore what is true as we develop it. HA suggests communicating the challenges of Co-Measurement in order to develop better ways to work together. Sometimes this requires making agreements in advance to deal with issues in a particular way. Other times it is up to us to intuit the best response and work with our partner to make sure they do not feel excluded or isolated.

One of the main reasons to have relationships is to be reflected, seen and valued for our contributions. Creating a new way of interconnecting that is harmless and creatively empowering is a creative step in having relationships that are actually supportive. Rather than idealizing opportunities, let us work together to design the best relationship for us. This takes discussing our aspirations and weeding out our separative desires. We know a desire is separative when it distances us from others. Whenever we seek something that is not a common aspiration, it is a distraction that will minimize our mutual future.

Doing this will eliminate a good portion of our Idealization. It requires focusing on how our personal life needs to integrate with our partnerships. Some talk about this as a work/life balance. Many are unwilling to create balance, because they do not understand that only by balance do we increase mutual productivity. We all need time for ourselves to be able to function well in relationship. As long as we are struggling with co-dependence issues, this balance will be hard to attain. When we develop a clear ability to make creative contributions in our work life, it builds Respect, Esteem and Love with our partners. This creates a virtuous feedback cycle where each element magnifies the other. This all begins when we invest in our Authentic Life Expression so we attract partners who are aligned with our mission. Another way this occurs is to choose a great partner who sees and supports our highest expressions.

When we do not have Skills to reconcile our inner conflicts, we tend to project these issues onto others. Because the person who is projecting cannot see that they are projecting, it creates an unpredictability that makes relationship difficult. People who know how to build a CNG can best deal with this unpredictability. When we have Skills, we can understand that others may not have the same Skills we do.  We need to make allowances for their differences, realizing it is the cost of having the relationship. This is one of the main Skills we learn in order to get out of Level 1. Otherwise, we are caught in our inability to see our own conditioning and to recognize the inconsistencies within us as we operate with mixed intentions from our programming. It is also important to realize that trying to question an individual (with mixed Motives) will not generate any positive response. This is because they are not able to see their own internal conflicts.

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© Copyright 2016, Larry Byram. All Rights Reserved.

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