Here we are, getting ready to surf the waves of love and joy, radiating good fellowship to all we meet, and even rubbing shoulders, according to your accounts, with people not of this world.
And what is it that runs through these events and knits them together?
It’s the return of love to this world. The wave of love building in intensity across the planet will stabilize us in love and joy and a shift will occur.
That shift will see the passing of influence from those who promoted greed, competition, and violence across the planet to those who promote generosity, cooperation and peace.
But I mean the word “shift” in a special way. I mean that that part of us which decides how we feel based on how others see us will yield to that part of us which decides how we feel based on how we actually feel, what we think, and what we want to see happen.
A seminal sociologist, Ernest Becker, created (or popularized) the distinction in the 1970s between “inner-directed” and “other-directed” people. Centering our appraisal of ourselves in others’ estimations of us (being “other-directed”) leads us to construct an image of ourselves designed to mollify and gain favour with others.
The cabal capitalized on this habit of ours by keeping our attention focused on one trend after another, one fashion, one fad of the moment.
Becker’s colleague, Erving Goffman, laid out how life proceeds when we engage in image management (Presentation of Self in Everyday Life). Instead of managing ourselves, what we’ve done is manage our image: dressing for success, looking out for number one, winning at office politics, etc.
Always we centered our attention on being “in” with the in-crowd, on wearing Guccis and dabbing ourselves in Chanel No. Five, on having a house with two cars. We followed the American Dream, never intuiting that we were being led … and led nowhere.
If we were not happy with the way things are going, we changed our image. But we’ve found out from decades of living this way that it’s a hollow, unrewarding existence.
Becker was chased out of academic circles and settled down here in Vancouver, teaching at Simon Fraser University, a few miles away from me. In those days, SFU had a reputation as a radical university. He didn’t live long enough to see the full blossoming of his views in the Growth Movement.
But even that died in the Recession of the early 1980s, when no one had money enough to afford the courses and workshops it offered. And then of course value was sucked out of the economy through junk bonds, mergers, acquisitions, financial bubbles and automation and sequestered in the 1 percent.
Those of us who’ve followed what’s happening today see what the cast of thousands it’s taken to cause a general rise in vibration from the loving energies sweeping the planet. And in making the shift, which we’re told is a permanent one, I predict we’ll go from other-directed to inner-directed.
We’re probably never going to lead a life, short of Ascension, where some things don’t go wrong, where we don’t jump the rails occasionally.
But this most important shift from other- to inner-direction will allow us to tap into a well-spring of confidence, stability and harmony, regardless of what happens in the outside world.
Looking back on his seminal distinction, seeing that the fulfilment of its promise is only coming about now, and remembering what it took to allow us all to make that shift, has me reflect.
In Becker’s day, he and many other academics were fired for wanting to see us come out of our dysfunctional ways of being. That was never what was officially wanted, but we only see that now.
If anyone had suspected that the medical, psychiatric, educational and religious professions had become suborned to an order that intended nothing but harm to 99 percent of the people, they would have been more radical than they were thought to be.
We’re taking back the source of our good estimation of ourselves. We’re reclaiming our personal power and freeing ourselves from the bad – and good – estimations of others. We’re realizing the promise of those early years, which blazed the trail we follow through the jungle of insanity we inhabited for centuries.
I find myself at this moment remembering the contribution to this shift of people like Becker, Goffman, Virginia Satir, Thomas Szacz, Carl Rogers, et al. I remember vividly the excitement that I felt when each new book issued from their pens. I’d like to think that they knew the shift would come eventually.
But, whether they did or not, it’s coming now.
Now we complete the transition that Becker, Goffman, Satir and others saw clearly but could not bring about. In terms of the ancestors of this movement we’re spearheading today, they planted the seeds forty years ago that are blossoming today.