I read a beautiful book this week, Life Visioning, by Michael Beckwith. In the book, he introduces the four stages of spiritual development. They resonated with me, and I wanted to share how I have witnessed and experienced them with you.
In my experience, you can be in all four stages, even on the same day. Just at different times. But there is one stage that you spend most of your time. Let’s begin.
The first stage is the victim stage – To Me
The victim blames the external circumstances for everything that happens to them. The government, the system, other people, or their luck. The critical thought dominating their mind is, “Why me?”
When you are in victim mode, you feel disempowered and alone.
I spent years in victim mode. Blaming the boss who was not such a good boss or that friend who was not such a good friend. In self-righteousness and blame. And also in misery. I realized thought that once you stop feeding the drama, it starts disappearing.
It is worth noting here that we might be victims of situations. But assuming a victim identity is a choice.
Letting go of the victim story is one of the most significant steps toward growth one can take.
The second stage is the manifester – By Me
This is when you take back control and start creating cool things in your life.
You come up with ideas, attract opportunities and take action. And then you bring them to life!
In this stage, imagination and visualization are powerful tools.
Everything I enjoy now, my family, my business, and my life by the beach were at some point purely in my imagination.
Looking at your life, you start to recognize all the cool things you created. If you use imagination, visualization and take inspired action, you create much more.
“Imagination is more important than knowledge,” said Einstein.
“If you can dream it, you can achieve it”, said Walt Disney, and this stage is all about that.
The third stage is the channel – Through Me
In this stage, you surrender and welcome what wants to come through you.
You are often in flow, losing track of time, doing something you love.
Your ego gets out of the way. Your overthinking gets out of the way. In the zone, inspiration flows. Artists and athletes will often experience this.
I have experienced this when I coach. I trust the right words to help my client to come through me.
In this stage, you become the channel.
When you are the channel, your intuition is your essential tool. You feel guided. Your work comes through you; you are not sure from where.
Your next steps are revealed through your intuition. You feel called by a deeper purpose, bigger than yourself. Learning to trust your intuition is a huge step towards your growth.
I have not met an ultra-successful person who has not learned to trust their intuition and inner guidance.
Steve Jobs said, “Intuition is a very powerful thing, more powerful than intellect.”
Jeff Bezos said: “All of my best decisions in business and in life have been made with heart, intuition, guts… not analysis.”
The fourth and final stage is the “I am it” – As Me
A couple of months ago, I went in the night to see turtles laying their eggs on the beach. We watched one turtle.
I saw her digging a big hole in the sand, laying over a hundred eggs, covering the hole and equalizing the sand to ensure the eggs were protected. Then, tired, she walked towards the sea.
It was a spiritual experience. I felt connected to the turtle, one mother to another. Like her and I were one. This moment was a glimpse of what Beckwith calls stage four.
In the fourth stage, you feel united with all of life. Separation is gone. You are one with everything.
Inspiration does not come through you; it is you. You do not attract the opportunities; you are the opportunities. You feel like you are the wave and the ocean at the same time.
People have used yoga, breathwork, meditation, psychedelics, sacred sexuality and other spiritual practices through the centuries for this taste of oneness and union. Yoga literally means to unite.
As we evolve spiritually, we move from having glimpses of this to experiencing it most of the time.
The path through these stages is not necessarily linear. There are steps back and forth.
While we may resonate more with one stage at any given time, the beauty lies in our capacity to navigate through each. To learn and evolve.
It is easy when someone presents us with stages to get competitive or even be consumed by spiritual ego.
It is also nice to have a roadmap. And have a way out of the conflict of whether you should create or surrender. The answer is that both are valid. There are just different stages of growth.
Which stage do you find yourself in most often, and how does it shape your life’s picture?
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