Step Three Hundred and Twenty

River Osuga, Tverskaya Oblast, Russia (the place I refer to in Round One of my Steps practice)
Step 320. I Am Free To Work Within The World.
When the world does not oppress you, you are free to work in the world. When the world does not intimidate you, you are free to work in the world. When you recognize that the world is a place calling for your contribution, you are free to work in the world. Thus, the greater your experience of Knowledge within your life, the freer you are to work within the world. And work within the world you will in time, and your work will be far more effective, far more engaging and far more complete than anything you have done thus far. In your past you have been afraid of the world, intimidated by the world, angered by the world and depressed by the world. Therefore, your past contribution to the world has been limited by these reactions. You have been ambivalent about being in the world because you were afraid of the world. Perhaps you have sought refuge in spiritual things, but your true spiritual nature will redirect you into the world and bring you back with greater power, certainty and purpose, for you have come to be in the world.

Understanding this, you will again realize the importance of Knowledge. You will again confirm how much you want to give to the world and how painful it is for you when this giving is obstructed or withheld. You have come to work in the world, and you want to do this completely so that when you leave, you leave with your gifts given and with everything presented. You have nothing to take Home with you from the world except the reclamation of relationships. With this understanding, you will become free to be in the world.

Upon the hour repeat today’s idea and recognize that to whatever extent you are still ambivalent about being in the world, your ambivalence is caused and is being perpetuated by your own intimidation and fear of the world. Remember this upon the hour so that you may learn the great lesson that is being taught today, the great lesson that you are becoming free to be in the world. Here you bring your Ancient Home with you. Here you will not attempt to escape the world simply because it frightens you, threatens you or depresses you.

You are here to give to the world, for Knowledge is greater than the world—the world only being a temporary place where Knowledge has been temporarily forgotten. In this, you will realize that which gives and that which receives, that which is great and that which is small. Your work in the world can now have your complete attention and devotion. Your work can now have your complete engagement. Thus, your physical life can become fully meaningful, purposeful and filled with value.

In your two deep meditation practices today, rekindle the fire of Knowledge within you by re-entering your sanctuary. Remember to be still. Remember to give yourself to practice. This is the work at hand. From this work your work in the world will be given freedom to express itself, and you who are within the world will be given the certainty and the comfort that your Ancient Home is with you.

Practice
 320: 
Two 30-minute practice periods. Hourly practice.

Here you will find the entire book free for download http://stepstoknowledge.com/

Here you will find pointers for getting started if this is your first encounter with this practice: Taking the Steps to Knowledge.

May 5, 2014 Round One: I spent the past couple of days away from home, camping on the banks of a peaceful river. There I did my Steps practice in the beauty of a natural environment. I wrote my thoughts down in a notebook, and now I am sharing them here, two days later.

I do not feel oppressed or intimidated by the world, nor do I fear the world. I am no longer ambivalent about being in the world. If there is anything I fear, it is being ridiculed, being thought of as someone to be ignored or written off because of my spiritual inclinations, because I am reclaiming Knowledge. However, I am coming to realize that not everyone is ready to reclaim Knowledge yet, so being ignored or written off is natural and it does not bother me as much as it used to. It no longer bothers me enough to hold me back from sharing my Steps experience. I want to be free to work within the world. It appears to me, though, that I am still missing the main point. I am still living in my fantasies. 

When I enter my sanctuary of stillness, the place where Knowledge abides, my Teachers lovingly greet me, but they tell me I am still a beginning student with a lot to learn. 

Little by little, however, it is easier to be in the world and I feel freer to work in the world. I am making progress.

June 26, 2015 Round Two: I have long stopped feeling oppressed and intimidated by the world. I still often feel that I do not really belong, that I am “different” from the people around me, but I do not suffer from this. I accept it as the way it is, for at a deeper level I know I am here for a purpose, that the world is the way it is so that I can learn and take advantage of the lessons the world is giving me. This is the environment I need right now as I learn to do the work I came here to do. I do not know what this is, I have no idea, and it is not something to analyze, but just to be with. What Reed says about being sober in life, allowing flatness and emptiness to be part of reality, of living at the centerline and not seeking highs, excitement, or adrenaline fixes sits very well with me. I understand what he is saying, and it is very freeing just to be and let Knowledge take me where I need to go.

Reed Summers on 'centerline'...
 
"Regarding this experience of flatness, of the 'empties', partly this is becoming sober in life, not riding the exuberant highs and avoiding those lows, but equalizing (flattening?) at centerline of living, sober, not an addict in separation, addicted to stimulation, ideas, comedy, interactions, news, phenomena, spiritual experiences, but to become sober, simple, humble, able to move with a mission and force beyond us personally, able to be coordinated by Knowledge and the Assembly in this mission to bring humanity into the next era of its evolution. 'Heaven can only work with you if you are simple.' That speaks of being sober, and equalizing to this centerline, and coming down off the rush of the highs and lows of life. As Patricia has said: 'take care that too much experience does not come at the cost of your sense of reality.' The rush of experience can distract us from reality itself. If we feel increasingly flat, empty, simple and sober, so be it, so that we can...sense reality, and move with this force of Knowledge, the Assembly, a greater reality which now seeks to move the world in a new direction.


"… With this, let us not bring the Way of Knowledge, and the teaching on Knowledge back into the life/mind of addiction, to use Knowledge as a new source of rush, of excitement, of high. It lives only at this centerline, the question is whether we can let our lives be reshaped to live more closely to that centerline as well, to be closer to Knowledge, in time to become more like Knowledge, and...go where it wills to take us.”

Sometimes I feel as though I am losing touch with myself, I have troubling feelings I do not know the source of. Perhaps I am being too selfish, trying to construe things to suit me best rather than doing what suits other people? I wish for things to work for the best of all concerned. What is the source of my dis-ease?

P.S. Tom C. writes:  ...there is freedom to record your thoughts because people mostly don’t care.

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