Crossing the River of Change
Note from Marj: Many of you know how I love the work of Dr. Joe Dispenza. I first heard him at the “Crossings” here in Austin. He was on the program with Lynn McTaggart who wrote The Field. Also, I had seen him in the movie, What the Bleep Do we Know? His books, Evolve Your Brain and Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself were excellent. And now, I am studying his latest book, YOU ARE THE PLACEBO. Today, I read in that book the following excerpt. I believe it is totally worth your time to read it carefully. His work is phenomenol, in my opinion. This is very good!! Enjoy:
p. 63-66 (You Are the Placebo)
The hardest part about change is not making the same choices we made the day before. The reason it’s so difficult is that the moment we no longer are thinking the same thoughts that lead to the same choices—which causes us to automatically act in habitual ways so that we can experience the same events in order to reaffirm the same emotions of our identity—we immediately feel uncomfortable. This new state of being is unfamiliar; it’s unknown. It doesn’t feel “normal.” We don’t feel like ourselves anymore—because we’re not ourselves. And because everything feels uncertain, we can no longer predict the feeling of the familiar self and how it’s mirrored back to us in our lives.
As uncomfortable as that may be at first, that’s the moment we know we’ve stepped into the river of change. We’ve entered the unknown. The instant that we no longer are being our old selves, we have to cross a gap between the old self and the new self. In other words, we don’t all just waltz into a new personality in a matter of moments. It takes time.
Usually when people step into the river of change, that void between the old self and the new self is so uncomfortable that they immediately slip back into being their old selves again. They unconsciously think, This doesn’t feel right, I’m uncomfortable, or I don’t feel so good. The moment they accept that thought, or autosuggestion (and become suggestible to their own thoughts), they will unconsciously make the same old choices again that will lead to the progression of the same habitual behaviors to create the same experiences that automatically endorse the same emotions and feelings. And then they say to themselves, This feels right. But what they really means is that it feels familiar.
Once we understand that crossing the river of change and feeling that discomfort is actually the biological, neurological, chemical, and even genetic death of the old self, we have power over change and we can set our sights on the other side of the river. If we embrace the fact that change is the denaturing of the hard-wired circuitry from years of unconsciously thinking the same way, we can cope. If we understand that the discomfort we feel is the dismantling of old attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions that have been repeatedly etched into our cerebral architecture, we can endure. If we can reason that the cravings we battle in the midst of change are real withdrawals from the chemical-emotional addictions of the body, we can ride it out. If we can comprehend that real biological variations are occurring from subconscious habits and behaviors in which our bodies are changing on a cellular level, we can forge on. And if we can remember that we are modifying our very genes from this life and from untold previous generations, we can stay focused and inspired to an end.
Some people call this experience the dark night of the soul. It’s the phoenix igniting itself and burning to ashes. The old self has to die for a new one to be reborn. Of course that feels uncomfortable!
But that’s okay, because that unknown is the perfect place to create from—it’s the place where possibilities exist. What could be better than that? Most of us have been conditioned to run from the unknown, so now we have to learn to become comfortable in the void or the unknown, instead of fearing it.
If you told me that you didn’t like being in that void because it’s so disorienting and that you can’t see what lies ahead because you can’t predict your future, I’s say that’s actually great, because the best way to predict the future is to create it—not from the known, but from the unknown.
As the new self is born, we must be biologically different, too. New neuronal connections must be sprouted and sealed by the conscious choice to think and act in new ways every day. Those connections must be reinforced by our repeatedly creating the same experiences until they become a habit. New chemical states must become familiar to us from the emotions of enough new experiences. And new genes must be signaled to make new proteins to alter our state of being in new ways. And if, as we’ve seen, the expression of proteins is the expression of life and the expression of life is equal to the health of the body, then a new level of structural and functional health and life will follow. A renewed mind and a renewed body must emerge.
Now, when a new day dawns for us after the long night of darkness and the phoenix rises regenerated from its ashes, we have invented a new self. And the physical, biological expression of the new self is literally becoming someone else. That’s true metamorphosis.