P2 The deep-rooted emotional reactions brought to light always show the child operating in you. And that child is self-centered and ignorant. Out of this self-centeredness and ignorance selfish motives arise, unconsciously or sometimes even half-consciously. You are unclear as to what you want in life, or in a particular area of your life. You drift, and all goals are in a fog of confusion and unawareness.
P3 Check your real motivations behind the conscious ones. Check whether or not you have a clear-cut aim. Check your reason for living. What is your purpose in life? What do you want it to be, apart from developing yourself to the best of your ability? Then see what you really want. Why do you want it? Beware of the error that one motivation necessarily excludes another. One of the most outstanding features of such a procedure will be that the moment you recognize your lack of clear-cut motivations, or the presence of destructive ones, you will see the law of cause and effect operating in your own life. You will thereby instantly lose the feeling of injustice, which may be conscious in some people but is perhaps unconscious in most.
Keep such established motivations conscious and clearly defined, working toward their goals. While you may not yet be able to shed the selfish motives, the very admission that they exist, the very honesty and clear vision about yourself will, on the one hand, release an entirely new inner force and energy, and, on the other, you will see your own responsibility for your fate. You will then cease being afraid of an unknown fate, whether your fears be conscious or unconscious.
P4 You may, again unconsciously, hope the solution will be handed to you, for you cannot work it out yourself. That is all wrong. Since you have brought about your confusion at one time, you are the one, the only one, who can solve it. Begin with the small things. You cannot possibly get to the really big issues in your life immediately, because they are too deeply submerged. You will always see, when you analyze one of these small things, that there is something more vital at stake, some important underlying principle about which you are confused and beclouded.
So the best, indeed the only possible way to go about it, as I have said so often, is to take daily incidents and work with them. There is nothing more contagious in this world than emotions, thoughts, reactions, and attitudes. You can observe that in your everyday life. The more you train yourself in self-observation, the more aware you will become of this truth. For instance, when another person shows a very strong spirit of competition toward you, something is immediately aroused in you even though you may otherwise be disinclined to be competitive. You want to compete with the person who brings this forth in you. Or let us consider showing off, or fighting for approval. If the other person does it, the perhaps much smaller trend in you is affected and brought to the fore, so that you, too, wish to do the same thing.
P7 Your actual real value is not at stake, although you may indeed contribute to the other’s unfaithfulness by your own childish craving to be loved instead of giving love maturely. You withdraw your real self in fear of losing something, and in so doing you actually may lose that which is dearest to you, for such is the law of nature. To be adult in the true sense means to take every negative occurrence and see how you contributed to it and what can be learned from it.
You will inevitably find an answer which you will know deep down in your heart to be true. This truth will make you free. If you do not choose adulthood by adopting such an attitude toward life, you will believe you are an innocent victim; you will feel persecuted and unjustly treated; you will be a self-pitying helpless little bundle—and you will even like yourself in this role, although you may suffer a great deal. The partner who has the possibility and knowledge of self-search should make an honest effort to find his or her own obstructions.
P8 You can only change a feeling genuinely if you understand it, but not if you suppress it. And understanding can be gained only by the procedure I always advocate. While this procedure goes on, one should not even attempt to effect a major change in one’s life, unless outer conditions become too unbearable.
One’s feelings will usually fluctuate in this period between masochistic submissiveness on the one hand and hostile resentment on the other. Underneath both sets of feelings is a strong, grasping forcing current, loudly proclaiming, “I want! In order to get what I want, I either submit and allow myself to be mistreated, or I cannot take this anymore, and therefore I hate.” All these emotions should be observed and followed through until one gets deeper into their origin.
—The Pathwork® Guide