Lecture 77 – Self-Confidence, its True Origin and What Prohibits It | Abbreviated Version

P1             You make no use of it (real self) and prefer to express the other self which you have become used to, but which is not the real you. It consists of the compulsive drives and impulses which you unconsciously think you have to express in order to be happy, or just to survive.

P2             You will then understand that all your wrong conclusions and images are a product of this current, which I have also called the forcing current. What causes all your conflicts and deviations is your desire to be happy, or to be loved. Being loved is a necessary requirement for being happy and therefore constitutes a major part of your compulsive drives. Subdivisions, divisions of this drive, such as the desire to be approved of and admired, may take the place of your desire to be loved; it may also be an additional factor.

The child in you imagines that you can only be happy if your will is done. At times, this may simply mean that your will is to be loved and admired. At other times you may feel unhappy if your dear ones have shortcomings that you disapprove of, or if their opinions vary from yours, or if you are prohibited from pursuing a certain aim. The child in you thinks that this prevents your happiness. You emerge from childhood with the rarely conscious conviction: “In order to be happy, my will has to be done.”

This fear is so strong that you often do not permit yourself to admit you have not got your will: you try to pretend that what you really wanted is no longer desirable. This is not merely pride, but it is based on the misconception that not getting what you want means terror, darkness, and unhappiness.

P3             Your real self functions in reality. It cannot manifest in a self-created world of illusion, in a world based on wrong assumptions. In reality it does not make you unhappy to wait and occasionally to give up.

P4             Find also all the means you resort to, either to get it, or to protect yourself from the horror of not getting it. One such attitude is submissiveness. When you are submissive you cling, and hope for the love of others. To obtain it, you forsake your own self and your own opinions, and do not stand up for yourself. You always put yourself at a disadvantage, losing your dignity and self-respect. All this is covered with the rationalization of unselfishness, sacrifice, and your ability to love.

In truth, you just use the forcing current in the most blatantly self-centered way. You simply try to make a bargain and say, “If I submit to you, you must love me and do my will.” Although outwardly you appear meek and flexible, inwardly just the opposite is the case. It is necessary that you find this aspect in you, no matter how hidden. It is also necessary that you understand it. Submission must never be confused with love. It may look similar, but the inner content is very different. When you try to appease the other person, you want something. In fact, you grab for it, not waiting for it to be given freely.

The stronger the submissiveness, the stronger the forcing current, which expresses your desire to get your way. There is another attitude, often chosen when people are more inclined to be hopeless of ever getting from others what they consider necessary. The only hope they see is in their using all their power, all their selfish, ruthless drives, to defeat the enemy who always stands in their way. They become hostile because they think the entire world is hostile and aggression is the only means of getting the happiness they desire.

P5             While a submissive person is obviously dependent, the one with a hostile attitude deceives himself or herself into believing that he or she is independent, standing alone and fighting alone, never bending to the will of others. They never realize that they are just as dependent as the submissive type, only they choose different means to pursue their conviction that they must get what they want in order to be happy. Their way is to reject emotions, affection, and what they may consider softness. To them all this represents danger. Another way of coping with the basic will to be happy is the attitude I have so often called withdrawal. It is important to understand the implications of the artificial manipulation of your feelings, either making them bigger or making them smaller than they are.

P6             First become aware of the forcing current, the current of “I want” on the one hand, and “I fear that I will not get what I want” on the other. Once you are clearly aware of how this current manifests in you, you will be able to let go of it. You will have the deep inner knowledge—not in your brain but in your solar plexus—that your reaction, or your knowledge, or your decision is right, feeling neither guilt nor pride nor doubt.

You will spontaneously be the best you can be: poised and unrepressed. You will say the right thing at the right time and know when not to speak. You will be relaxed and concentrated at the same time, fully aware and alive to the moment and its requirements. You will know that nothing that should be yours could fail to come to you. You will not need to be in a frenzy about it, worrying whether or not you do too much or too little. You will do what is necessary and eliminate that which is unnecessary, without fear and worry.

P7             You will not need to exaggerate. You will not believe that you must have everything or you have nothing. You will find happiness, but will know that not everything need go according to your wishes. You will not believe people are “good” or “bad,” neither depending on them too much nor distrusting them and standing alone in a seemingly hostile world. If after ascertaining realizing your wishes and seeing the discrepancy between them and your actual needs the intensity still remains, consider whether the fulfillment of the desire would mean to you an imaginary protection against an imaginary danger.

P9             If you attack in order to hide something, it will make you as helpless as the object of your attack. It is often the case that one resents in the other what one actually resents in oneself. If you look at what particularly irritates you, you will inevitably find that, perhaps in a distorted or modified way, you have a very similar aspect or attitude. The stronger you dislike it in yourself, the more you project the dislike on others.

—The Pathwork® Guide