The Fold-Over: Reuniting the Animal with the Spirit
When considering the course of conscious evolution, most tend to think in terms of a purely upward progression from some “lower-” to “higher-self” (with the implication that one is more desirable than the other). However, rather than unidirectionally striving to evolve from animal being to spiritual essence, why not simply resolve the two once and for all? It is possible to bring the animal and spiritual natures into perfect harmony with each other; to remain firmly planted in both by integrating the animal into the spiritual and vice versa. It was just over a decade ago that I came to accept this as the next step beyond evolution into an existential spiritual essence, but what’s to stop us from progressing in both directions at once?
Well, what’s stopping us is sustained ktisis; in other words, prolonging the moment of suspension / hesitation which leads to the spark of creation.
In order to generate a spark, we must have polarity – the conflict between two opposing forces, the difference between which embodies their combined potential. Electricity, for example, requires current flow (energes) and a voltage differential (ktisis) to ground or reverse polarity (∴ voltage≍ktisis, current≍energes). To expand the analogy further, static electricity is pure ktisis (i.e. a build-up of voltage with no current flow), building in pressure until it is given a flow path. As such, static electricity remains in a state of suspended potential until energes comes to relieve the pressure / charge imbalance of ktisis (∴ pressure≍ktisis, flow≍energes). And, then, we get a spark.
In self-aware beings such as ourselves, this suspension of potential takes the form of inhibition; those feelings of guilt, shame, jealousy, fear, anger, embarrassment, disgust, inferiority, superiority, possessiveness, frustration, discomfort and resentment through which we consciously and deliberately prevent ourselves from exercising our full potential toward creativity and transformation. Allowing ourselves to be governed by such lower, base emotions leads us into the inaction of hesitation which, in turn, allows pressure to build up ungrounded until internal stresses, tensions and anxieties reach destructively volatile levels.
This is a fairly common problem encountered in the pursuit of purely spiritual evolution because, as our conscious focus comes to be fixed upon “higher things”, we leave our animal selves ignored and unattended (ungrounded), and if, in the process, we have let ourselves remain subject to any of the above inhibitions, the sustained state of unrequited ktisis will lead to no end of suffering.
Thus, we cannot ignore the animal in the course of conscious advancement, as it is as equally essential to our lives as the spirit. We must embrace the animal (rather than attempting to suppress or overcome it), just as we embrace the spirit; allow it to feed, reward and sustain us with the same willingness as we accept “spiritual food” as a reward from the sustaining pursuits of our “higher selves”.
…through which Don Estes, in his book Harmonic Law: The Science of Vibration, correctly asserts that we, as human beings, are essentially a consciousness sandwiched between a sub- and super-conscious; our animal and spiritual essences, respectively, the “opposing” natures of which are constantly being resolved by our minds stuck in the middle.
However, this does not necessarily have to be the case: If we align our animal and spiritual selves so that they are in concert and synchronous in function and intent, this would free our consciousness beyond the tedium of always serving as a resolving force between the two. And, with the resource of our conscious minds released from this relentless regulatory role, think how much further we could progress in all three states of being!
So, essentially, we need to “fold-over” the above diagram to unify our animal and spiritual natures. But, in order to do so, we must first relinquish inhibition lest the “opposing” aspects between the “higher” and “lower” emotions result in phase cancellation. This is simply a matter of replacing useless inhibitions with the beneficial and upbuilding aspects of the animal condition: passion, respect, desire, drive, vitality, volition and vigor, to name a few. After all, all of the negative associations expressed in the chart are merely the results of repressing our animal aspect.
The word “animal” stems from the Latin “animalis” meaning “living, breathing” which, in turn, finds its roots in “anima” for “breath, vital force, soul, spirit”. Much in the same manner, “spirit” comes from the Latin “spiritus”, which literally means “a breathing”. So why have we, as such highly evolved living beings, spent so many progressive generations of our time driving a repressive division between the two? Especially when we consider all of the strife and suffering this self-inflicted disunity has brought about?!
As the combined spiritual-animal creatures that we are, human beings would best thrive and evolve in a state of “uninhibited discipline”; in other words, follow the passions and desires of your heart whilst being mindful, considerate and deliberate in your actions. It really is that simple.
But doing away with inhibition is not such an easy task, as it can become extremely deep-rooted in our consciousness with tendrils reaching out into all aspects of our manners of being and doing. This is, in part, due to its origins, many to which we are intimately attached or from whom we desire “approval” rather than true acceptance…
– Inhibition can be self-inflicted, such as when an embarrassing experience in one’s youth affects their willingness to engage in similar pursuits later in life.
– Inhibition can be acquired from exogenous sources, such as when cultural or religious teachings, social mores or even our own parents instill “virtues” within us which subsequently give rise to feelings of guilt, disgust or frustration.
– Inhibition can be virally transmitted and transmuted, such as when jealousy and possessiveness in one partner breeds shame and fear in the other.
…what’s more, inhibition has the ability to reinforce itself through the feedback of the afflicted individual engaging in periodic, repetitive behaviors (i.e. “making the same mistake twice”) because of the “comfort zone” of familiarity this creates. And, once one becomes accustomed to / habituated into their circumstances, complacency begins to appear as the path of least resistance.
This is an illusory deception though, since, in reality, the true source of this condition is inhibition which, in turn, is ktisis – the path of most resistance – sustained! Often, it can require a major trauma or life-changing event in order to break and escape the repressive, habitual patterns inhibition forces upon us. So, can we not, as the highly evolved and hyper-conscious individuals that we are, overcome this stumbling block to our further advancement on our own, without the assistance of some exogenous “undoing”?
The answer is, in short, “yes”…but only if we are capable of administering a similarly major “shock to the system” which permeates both the animal and spiritual sides of the equation. This “shock” does not have to be an unpleasant one, though, just something that turns our whole world upside-down and changes our lives irrevocably; one that defies all that our consciousness “holds dear” and releases us to pursue our passions and live the dreams we’ve held repressed and “locked away” in the imaginal vault of our past.[And the “shock” to which I refer, be it perceived in a positive or negative light, is the ultimate relief of ktisis sustained; that “spark of creation” which results in the penultimate union of the spirit with the animal (yes, there is a second fold-over to be achieved, but that’s yet another topic for another day). It is the release of ourselves (from the bounds of inhibition) to, at long last, become who we truly are (and, indeed, always have been).]
Alternatively, we could all just be ourselves…
[to be continued]