Confrontation with Dharma

By George A. Boyd © 2006

Excerpted from Question and Answers with Swami

Q: I’m in a lot of conflict right now. It seems my Soul requires one thing of me—and my parents, friends, and church require another. What do I do?

A: To become your own person, to individualize and realize your authentic self, it sometimes becomes necessary to deviate from established norms that are placed upon you from the outside, so that you may remain true to that norm which is inside (Dharma). To remain true to Dharma means that you are living in integrity, you are in harmony with the law within your own heart. These types of violation of societal norms include:

  • Deviation from cultural (ethnic group) norms – Going against custom, following a life path other than that which is expected
  • Deviation from societal (legal) norms – Breaking the law, performing behavior that violates codifies statutes enacted by legislative bodies
  • Deviation from ancestral (parental) norms – Going against requests of your parents, going against parental expectations of model behavior and lifestyle
  • Deviation from peer (friendship) norms – Performing actions that violate the conscience of friends, going against peer expectations of model behavior and lifestyle
  • Deviation from corporate (workplace) norms – Performing actions that violate company rules or policies, not performing work to required standards of excellence, efficiency, precision accuracy or professionalism
  • Deviation from political (political party) norms – Voting or expressing political opinions that do not agree with the approved ideology of your political party
  • Deviation from religious (religious group) norms – Performing actions that violate behavioral and belief standards established by the church (or other religious body) which the church believes are authorized by scripture and sanctioned by the Divine or the representative (Master, Savior, Prophet) of the Divine
  • Deviation from personal conscience (Dharmic) norms – Violating an internalized standard or value believed to be true, right or good. Not living in integrity with one’s inner sense of truth (Dharma)

Even if you rebel from these outer norms, if you remain true to your inner sense of truth, you will have inner peace. But if you deviate from your Dharma to live up to the outer norms, to fulfill the expectations of your culture, your nation, your parents, your friends, your employer or your religion before your own inner sense of truth, then you will live in conflict. This conflict is a felt-sense that something is missing—a vague uneasiness or unidentified anxiety, a feeling that your own self is angry with you, is condemning you for your folly or a sense of emptiness or desolation within.

Dharma appears in different forms according to the Ray type of the individual:

First Ray – The Will of God, the Fiery Triangle

Second Ray – The Wheel of the Law, the Eightfold Path of Noble Truth

Third Ray – The Law of God, the Ten Commandments, the Divine Order behind the laws of the Physical and Astral Planes, the laws underlying the Creation of Heaven and Earth

Fourth Ray – The Law of Nature and Consciousness, the Way, the Tao

Fifth Ray – The Law of Truth, the Razor’s Edge, Perfection, Perfect Mastery

Sixth Ray – The Law of Love and Grace, living according to the Master or Savior’s commandments

Seventh Ray – The Tree of Life (Kabala) – the Laws of Karma, Manifestation, Wisdom and Spiritual Essence

On whatever Ray it manifests to you, this image, voice, or felt-sense of Dharma will become very clear to you at certain crucial points in your life.

  • Sometimes your Dharma will require of you things that go against your desires, your plans, or what seems reasonable to you.
  • Sometimes, when you have already started on a course of action, it will pull you back and start you down another path.
  • Sometimes it will unexpectedly intervene when you wish to marry someone and indicate that this person is not right for you.
  • Sometimes it will bid you to leave the security of your job and strike out on your own.

However Dharma manifests to you, when it confronts you, you have a choice. Do you follow this inner requirement of your Soul or do you follow the dictates of your desire, your preferences or your reason?

If you follow Dharma, it will sometimes create disruption in your life.
You may have to:

  • Cancel plans
  • Make awkward explanations to friends and family about your sudden “irrational” decision
  • Go through unforeseen personal sacrifice and hardships
  • Do things that feel terrifying or illogical to you
  • Re-think where your life is going and what you will do with the rest of your life
  • Experience antipathy and continual criticism from those who were your friends and colleagues
  • Receive threats of violence or promises of revenge from those whose values and beliefs you have acted against through courageously acting upon your integrity

If you reflect upon it from the standpoint of your ego, the part of you that only wants to fulfill its own desires, live its dreams and be happy—it is madness; it is utter lunacy.

But from the standpoint of the Soul, it is an absolute requirement: it is necessary to fulfill the Divine requirement.

Because of this, you will run into a conflict between the free will agency of the personality, which wants to have its own way and create the future it desires, versus the impulse of Destiny, the pressure of the spiritual life upon the human life, which is a Dharmic imperative.

If you run away from your Dharma, your decision haunts you. You have your freedom, but it is a hollow, tormented freedom. Things go wrong, you sabotage yourself, your plans fall through—it seems to you sometimes that the world is against you.

It passes through your mind that you are cursed or that you have sinned against some higher principle. You feel a sense of desperation. You may achieve your goals and find that they have no enjoyment for you, they seem empty and meaningless.

Outside the door, the Soul waits, until the karma that you have created by your own free will plays itself out. This may last from a number of days to several lifetimes. Then your Soul will appear before you, its Voice will whisper to you, you will feel its presence once again. Again you will be given the opportunity to follow, to fulfill your Dharma. What will you choose this time? Will you again choose your egoic freedom and abandon your Soul?

This process of choosing or abandoning your Soul is placed before you. Sometimes it can occur from moment to moment at certain periods. Sometimes it will appear only one time in your lifetime. It is put before you to live according to the requirements of your Dharma—or abandon it and reap the karmic consequences. This requirement is very definite: there are no gray areas here—it is yea or nay, and there is no middle ground.

Forced choice is used in ethnic groups, in society, by parents, friends, and employers, in political parties, and in religious conversion and preaching to require you to make a decision. It is very clear to you what the consequences will be if you do not choose what they want you to do.

On the other side is your Soul, which also places before you the forced choice of embracing or abandoning your Dharma. From the outside, these social forces that make powerful demands of you are pulling you one way. From the inside, your Soul is pulling you another.

Sometimes it must feel to you that you are being ripped apart. People sometimes do go insane and have nervous breakdowns because the pressure is too great. It stretches them beyond their limits and their capacity to endure. It breaks them apart, because they cannot have both what the world desires and what the Soul requires.

People who become mystics, saints, and sages tell us that they have not regretted choosing Dharma, but that it was a very difficult, arduous path they traveled as a result of the choice.

People who have embraced the dictates of their ego, who have followed the path of desires, obeyed the cultural requirements of their group, their society, their parents, peers, and employers and have faithfully followed their religion tell us that they have lived good, reasonable happy lives. They tell us that they have had no major confrontations with their conscience and they believe that their Soul is safe in the hands of their Savior, Master, or Prophet.

This is a very difficult choice that you must make, a life-wrenching choice. It seems cruel that Life has required this of you, and has spared others to be at peace with themselves and with the world.
Your Soul is calling you, making requirements of you that don’t make sense. You feel frightened and confused, and don’t know whom to trust. If you tell your friends and family, they will think that you have gone mad. If you go to a psychiatrist, he or she will certify that you are insane and give you medication to shut down your whirling thoughts and churning emotions.

If you go to your priest or minister, he or she will tell you that it is the Devil talking to you and to follow the teachings of the church. Where do you turn at a time like this?

It helps to pray and ask the Divine for guidance, to show you the outcome of both choices, to bless you to make the best decision for you. Then you must decide, you must choose a path. It may be the right way, it may be the wrong way, but you must choose and take the consequences.

When you realize that your choices do have consequences, you start to gain wisdom, you begin to be able to take responsibility for your life. This is a major challenge for every human being. This is an important step of growth for you.

It is not easy when you have to confront your Dharma, but it can be a great blessing to you if you can successfully navigate these troubled waters. We encourage you to be courageous, to rouse yourself, and rise to this challenge. Face it like a warrior. Be ready to make a firm and resolute decision. Be willing to cast your holy yea or nay. Be willing to have those who are not your true friends fall away, because those that truly love you will love you still, even if you follow a path that they do not approve of or understand.

Confrontation with Dharma can be a shattering, life-changing, revolutionary experience. But sometimes it is the greatest opportunity you will ever be presented.

Honoring Your Psychological Protective Factors

Psychological issues, painful emotions, and fears can be processed and released through a variety of different methods. Among these methods that coaches, healers, and metaphysical counselors use are:

  1. Holding your attention on the emotions that you feel in your body and riding them until you feel peace or release
  2. Shifting from an issue to a state of blissful transcendence and back again several times until the emotional charge in the issue is dissipated
  3. Asking a repetitive question to the unconscious mind until you reach the originating incident
  4. Holding acupuncture points and tapping them, and using an affirmation, while focusing on your issue
  5. Continuously breathing through the issue until you transcend it
  6. Asking selective questions to the issue to reveal its core
  7. Using affirmations with energetic attunements to burn the issue away

It is clearly valuable that these processes and evocative methods overcome limiting beliefs or fears that keep people back from taking the next step in their lives, but we must also ask, are there instances where processing can deaden or erase protective factors in the unconscious mind?

A protective factor in the unconscious mind is one that sets appropriate limits and regards the larger perspective. In this way, these sentinels of the unconscious are effectively acting as a brake on destructive passions; and on the over-zealousness of the ego in attaining its desires and dreams without regard for others, which takes the form of manipulating and using others to get what it wants.

A protective factor might:

  • Set a limit on what you charge for products and services, restraining the impulses of unbridled greed
  • Regard the impact of what you are going to say to others, before you hurt their feelings
  • Consider the needs of a potential sexual partner, instead of regarding them to be a convenient way to experience pleasure and orgasm
  • Introduce a modicum of humility and consideration of others to counteract tendencies to narcissism and arrogance
  • Counter impulses of violence and revenge, when the consequences might prove dangerous or catastrophic
  • Have an openness and tolerance for the customs and beliefs of other cultures, instead of insisting that others accept your values and mores
  • Retain objects that have no current utility, but are known to have usefulness for what you will become in the future
  • Check behavior that may seem exciting, but can lead to injury or even death

These protective factors, which may appear like fears or inhibiting reservations, may seem like hindrances on attaining what you desire. As a result, many coaches, New Age helpers, and metaphysical counselors who use these evocative, emotional processing methods, simply remove these inner restraints, with an aim to maximize their clients’ “human potentials” through helping them achieve all their desires.

The wisdom and restraint these protective factors produce, alas, is removed along with the irrational fears and patterns of self-sabotage that do indeed hinder progress and change. What these helpers unwittingly create through uprooting these aspects of wisdom are people who:

  • Become grandiose and arrogant (narcissism)
  • Assume they can magically wish or intend things into being (magical thinking, omnipotence)
  • Believe they can charge enormous sums of money for their products and services, so they become fabulously wealthy—but convey little of intrinsic or lasting value to their clients (greedy exploitation)
  • Believe they can claim expertise or mastery of a topic without extensive study, experience, and practice of the skill (false expertise)
  • Eliminate prudent consideration of potential investments before risking large sums of money, based on exaggerated promises (imprudence)
  • Act on excitement and enthusiasm, not considering the potential real risks and consequences (impulsivity)
  • Overestimate their chances of success, and make poor judgments (overconfidence)

As people begin process material at the wave of consciousness on the Akashic Records Subplane of the Abstract Mind Plane, they can select to work on any issue they believe holds them back. However, it is important that they discern which of these issues are the sentinels of the Wisdom Plane, and which need to be removed to facilitate movement into the next step of their growth.

People can be manipulated through their dreams, desires, and fantasies, and be persuaded to do things that—in the context of their life purpose and mission—are not for their highest good. We encourage those who seek to open these portals to the unconscious think upon these things, and identify what is a protective restraint and which is an issue that is genuinely limiting growth.

Concerning the Maturation of the Self

By George A. Boyd © 2019

Q: Why is it the people who are purportedly so spiritually advanced, but who act in a manipulative and cruel way?

A: This is because, even through their Soul may have advanced along its Path through the Continuum—or the spiritual essence with which they identify has made progress on its delineated track towards the origin they perceive—they have not reached mature states of functioning at the level of the personality. You can visualize these levels of personality functioning as a series of “self states.” There appear to be 14 major self states through which people express:

  1. Primal symbiosis – your self is merged with your mother; you sense you are one organism
  2. Dependent self – You need your mother’s nourishment and continual care. You are not able to care for yourself.
  3. Autonomous self – You are able to take action for yourself to complete simple tasks. You seek attention and praise for your achievements.
  4. Superior self – You complete with others. You seek to prove your superiority over others.
  5. Cruel self – You use your superiority to coerce others into doing what you want. You may bully or belittle others.
  6. Manipulative self – You use others to get what you need through manipulating the information you disclose to them and what emotions you display to them. Once you get what you want, you abandon them.
  7. Defensive self – You evade and conceal letting others know about your true motives through using lies and diversion to avoid taking responsibility for your behavior. You might feel shame, guilt or fear under the surface, but you hide it from others through an elaborate series of defenses. You may use people who are loyal to you to act as your defenders.
  8. Repentant self – You feel vulnerable and frightened. You begin to disclose your genuine feelings and needs. You communicate clearly and honestly. You take responsibility for your actions and make amends to those you have harmed when this is possible. In religious groups, confession, contrition, and repentance mark this stage. This is a key stage of maturation to enable you to achieve intimacy with others, and to facilitate emotional healing and recovery from trauma and addiction.
  9. Helpful self – You are engage in doing acts of kindness and express caring towards others. You begin to be conscientious: you want to do an excellent job and produce a quality product. You control what you say and do, so you won’t hurt others.
  10. Principled self – You live up to your moral values or a code of honor. You become capable of acting with integrity.
  11. Disciplined self – You are able to work, sacrifice, and dedicate yourself to a superior development of a skill, a creative pursuit, or a religious or political cause. You put in long hours and maintain intense focus on this subject.
  12. Inclusive self – You are able to empathize and care for others. You can intuitively enter the experience of others: you deeply understand them and can intuit their needs. At this stage you become capable of becoming a loving parent.
  13. Collective self – You are able to work on the needs and issues of a group beyond your role as a parent or caretaker for family and relatives. You are engaged in the issues and needs of larger groups—a company, community, state, nation, or in the international arena. You become capable of taking on projects that are for the collective good. At this stage, your Soul purpose typically overshadows your self.
  14. Divinized self – You experience union of your sense of self with the Divine. At this stage, you become a God Realized being or an Avatar.

People usually don’t express a single self state: they typically express through a range of self states. But one of these self states may be dominant. For example:

  • A dominant narcissistic individual might primarily function through self states 3-7.
  • A born again Christian, or someone in recovery from addiction might operate through self states 8-10.
  • Someone training to be an Olympic athlete or a dedicated military officer would manifest self states 10-11.
  • The true blossoming of parenting fructifies as self state 12; gifted psychotherapists also act through this self state.
  • Those who can selflessly transcend personal and family life to contribute to the community manifest through self state 13.
  • Rare spiritual Masters consciously embody the Divine as an Avatar at self state 14.

Let’s examine how you are functioning:

What is your self state range?

What is your dominant self state, the one you most commonly express?

If you were going to assign a percentage to how much time you spend operating in these self states, how much of your time to you spend in each one?

What would enable you to move from the upper range of your self states to the next level?

What holds you back from moving to the self state of the next level?

What self states have you outgrown?

The Master Kung Tse (Confucius) made the distinction between the first seven of these self states, which he called the “inferior man;” and the last seven of these self states, which he called the “superior man.” To move from one self state to another requires:

  1. Physical, emotional, and mental maturation
  2. Working out the issues that keep you from moving into this next self state
  3. Letting go of the outmoded behavior, attitudes, and beliefs of the old self state

We recommend that you contemplate these 14 self states, so you can identify:

Which self states do you no longer embody that you formerly operated through?

Which self states do you embody now?

Which self states you could you inhabit in the future? (Pay attention to what needs to be mastered or overcome to move into this self state.)

For some of you, moving to the next self state seems difficult. You feel you are stuck in old patterns. You’ve never learned the skills to fully actualize your human potential. The influences of your past seem to hold you back.

Those of you who are experiencing these inner limitations may benefit from a coaching experience:

  • Those of you who have never learned the skills to actualize your potential may benefit from our Life Coaching Program.
  • Those of you who had negative spiritual experiences in a cultic group may receive help re-owning your life through our Cult Recovery Coaching Program.
  • Those of you who have lingering issues from your experiences growing up in a dysfunctional family may find your pathway to becoming whole through our Dysfunctional Family Coaching Program.
  • Those of you who are recovering from an addiction may reconnect with their inner sources of strength and wisdom to enable them to avoid relapse and to facilitate their personal growth with our Addiction Recovery Coaching Program.

You can learn more about our coaching programs here.

Deconstructing Mindsets Revisited

By George A. Boyd © 2019

Q: In the New Age community, they talk a lot about how the mind creates reality. In what ways does the mind create reality? How does this happen?

A: There are a variety of ways that we create mindsets, perceptual frames through which we view reality. Here are some of the views on how this works:

  1. Neurological gating – In this theory, some neurological mechanism is conceived to hold certain sensations out of the conscious awareness of the cerebral cortex. Beliefs are purported to construct this filter. An example is that if you are looking for a hairbrush, your nervous system will exclude other sensations that are not a hairbrush. Similarly, if you believe you are impoverished, you will perceive those cues that tell you that you don’t have enough money.
  2. Cognitive bias – In this view, you tend to label some perceptions as more true of your identity than others. You might exclude any negative beliefs about your identity, which will raise your self-esteem and give you an inflated sense of self. Alternately, you might exclude positive beliefs and view your self as flawed, unworthy, inferior, or unlovable.
  3. Developmental influences – This standpoint holds that you learn information about yourself through the significant people in your life—parents, relatives, friends, teachers, and mentors—and this is what you unconsciously believe about yourself. These liminal patterns keep arising in your life and confirm these deeply held beliefs about yourself, until you uncover them and re-create more realistic beliefs.
  4. Physiological armoring – In this perspective, you wall off issues in your body-mind as islands of pain, muscular tension, swelling, and inflammation. These split-off aspects of your body-mind contain painful emotional issues that condition the way you see reality. So while you might hold you are successful and doing well in the part of your organism that is free from these symptoms, these armored aspects of yourself contain a completely different belief, which you unconsciously enact.
  5. Subpersonalities – In this point of view, you contain elements of your personality that are integrated into the Self, and those that are relegated to your unconscious. These non-integrated issues personify as subpersonalities or voices. While much of the time you may act voluntarily through the agency of the Self, there are times in which you act out the issues that your subpersonalities embody.
  6. Plateaus of growth – This stance holds that as you develop personally and spiritually, you transition to new plateaus of growth. Each plateau appears to have inherent strengths and weaknesses, possibilities and limitations. These mindsets allow you to do, be, and have what is possible within that perceptual frame; as you expand this perceptual frame to encompass the next plateau, new possibilities open up for you—you can do things that were not possible on your former plateau.
  7. The Mandala of the Mind – This vision conceives that you are unfolding your spiritual potentials and uncovering layer after layer of what is stored in your unconscious. As you dissolve, transmute, and integrate this material, your unconscious mind progressively plays less of a role in conditioning your behavior, belief, and perceptions of reality. Through this crucible of transformation, you uproot these liminal mindsets and have a greater say in what you will create in your life and in the world around you.

So what you believe conditions what you will pull out of the lens of perception. Conversely, how you perceive something shapes what you believe about it.

So mindsets are deconstructed through either (a) changing your beliefs that limit or distort what you perceive is true or possible; or (b) shifting your perception so that you transcend the limitations of a particular perceptual frame.

An example of (a) is you change your beliefs, so that you are no longer believe you are a victim of what happened to you in the past; you now believe that you can create a new future, regardless of what happened to you in the past.

Perceptual shift, or reframing (b) is demonstrated by moving from the standpoint of the ego in which you feel limited and inadequate to the perspective of your Higher Self, where you are free to create whatever you envision.

Q: So what is the actual process of deconstructing a mindset?

A: You uncover successive layers of the issue until you reach the core. This deconstruction strategy resembles a technique we call the Mandala Method. In this deconstruction process, you take each belief, examine its outcome, and then segue to the next position on the ladder of belief.

Here’s an example, from one of my clients, who was working on an emotional pattern of overwhelm, based on the belief that certain actions are too hard:

INITIAL BELIEF POSITION: I can’t do this; it’s too hard.

  • Frame 1: If I believe I cannot do something, I won’t want to try. It seems too hard.
  • Frame 2: If I believe that something is too hard, I will feel overwhelmed if I try to do it.
  • Frame 3: If I believe something is overwhelming, I will give up making any effort.
  • Frame 4: If I give up on the effort, the task will never get done.
  • Frame 5: If the task never gets done, I will feel like a failure.
  • Frame 6: If I feel like a failure, I will feel terrible shame.
  • Frame 7: If I feel terrible shame, I will hate myself and feel like ending my life.
  • Frame 8: If I feel like ending my life, I want to die to escape the pain and the shame of being a failure.
  • Frame 9: If I die to try to escape the pain and the shame, I won’t complete my life’s work, and I truly will become a failure.
  • Frame 10: If I truly am a failure, I will have to come back again [reincarnate] and face the misery in a new birth, which might be under even worse conditions
  • Frame 11: If I have to face the misery again, it will motivate me to discover how I can stop making myself miserable. I would resolve to genuinely face my misery and learn how I create it.
  • Frame 12: If I learn how I create my misery, I’ll stop creating it. I’ll be at peace. I won’t be miserable.
  • Frame 13: If I’m at peace, I’ll want to help others find peace and joy, and escape their misery.
  • Frame 14: Peace and joy is my true nature.

In this sequence, this client uncovered a key insight at frame 12: “If I learn how I create my misery, I’ll stop creating it.” If the client focuses here and tries to uncover the origins of his misery now—and he is successful in doing this—this entire emotional pattern is dissolved, and he will abide in frame 14, “peace and joy is my true nature.”

The takeaway from this deconstruction process is that if mindsets are constructed, they can be deconstructed. There is a place on this chain of emotionalized beliefs, where change is possible. If the client embraces and operates from this place where change can emerge, the pattern can be uprooted and the mindset can be shifted from a negative and helpless stance to a positive and empowered one.

Types of Boundaries

By George A. Boyd © 2019

Q: I have had an issue with keeping appropriate boundaries with other people. As a result, others have manipulated me, exploited me, and abandoned me after using me for their agendas. Can you give some advice about restoring and maintaining boundaries?

A: Boundaries are based on the rules you set and the decisions you make about what is an appropriate boundary. If you do not have any rules and you don’t make a decision as to what is appropriate and what is not, your boundaries are permeable, and others can take advantage of you.

First, let’s describe the types of boundaries that you have.

  1. Physical limits or boundaries – These are the rules you have set about touching, sexuality, or harm to your body. This is your zone of physical discomfort and vulnerability.
  2. Vitality limits or boundaries – This is the amount of energy you have available to expend on a project or to carry out the activities of daily living until you must stop what you are doing and rest. This is your zone of endurance, strength, and resilience.
  3. Emotional limits or boundaries – This is your “personal space.” This is the level at which you decide what type of relationship others will have with you, what you are willing to disclose to them, and what feelings you will share with them. This level also includes what you will allow others to say to you—you communicate to them to stop when they are saying something that is offensive, inappropriate, or hurtful. This is the zone of your emotional sensitivity and relationship parameters.
  4. Mental limits or boundaries – This is the field of your current knowledge, intelligence, and skill. This boundary puts a filter on what information you will admit into your awareness. It acts to keep out material that you cannot currently integrate from your unconscious mind. It operates as a valve on the information you will accept from others. This is the zone of your active mindsets through which you engage with the world around you and other people.
  5. Volitional limits or boundaries – This is the range of choices you find morally acceptable and you give yourself permission to do. It gives you the capacity to say “no” to others, when what they propose to you is outside of your ethical guidelines that make up your character, define your Integrity, and set limits on the behavior you will let yourself perform. Once you have defined these moral rules for yourself, you can also set behavioral standards, rules, and policies for the behavior of others that you supervise—for example, children, dependent adults, or co-workers. This is the zone of your moral choice.
  6. Personal limits or boundaries – This comprises your total personal capabilities that enable you to respond to the issues and events of your own life; the coping skills you have to deal with the behavior of others; and the relative risk you are able to tolerate when your situation requires you to change. This is the zone of your human potential, where you can generate personal transformation and life change.
  7. Spiritual limits or boundaries – This is the totality of your consciousness in the Superconscious mind—the relative amount of the unconscious mind behind your Soul, your vehicles of consciousness, and your spirit that you have transformed into light and made conscious. This purification activates your innate love, wisdom, and power, enabling you to express your extrinsic Soul Purpose and share your Soul’s gifts with others. This limit is the boundary between the conscious and unconscious levels of your entire mind. This is the zone of actualization of your Soul’s spiritual evolutionary potentials. Spiritual teachers need to respect others’ spiritual boundaries.

There are five major ways people experience boundaries.

  1. Violated boundaries – You experience this when you have known physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, and the perpetrator may or may not continue to breach them. You feel violated, abused, de-valued, used, and abandoned. Your self-esteem is degraded.
  2. Threatened boundaries – You feel discomfort and alarm that someone is trying to violate your boundaries. They may make physical taunts, threats, or engage in sexual harassment. They belittle you and criticize you. You are in a state of vigilance and you actively defend yourself.
  3. Intact boundaries – You feel that you are respected and honored, and believe no one will harm you. You feel safety, trust, and that others care about you.
  4. Expanded boundaries – This is an increased awareness of your potential abilities that occurs when you enter an altered state of consciousness through ingestion of psychoactive substances, or through hypnosis or meditation. You feel euphoria and that you have access to enhanced abilities.
  5. Dissolution of boundaries – This is the experience of ego-death or loss of your sense of Self. You may feel your spiritual essence is merging into its origin; concurrently, your sense of personal identity disappears. You can experience engulfment from the unconscious mind in this state; this leads to psychosis. Alternately, you can experience Mystic Union, or union with the Divine; this grants full spiritual freedom and spiritual empowerment.

Your experience of these five boundary zones has characteristic signs:

Generally, if you have experienced violation of your boundaries, you will benefit from psychotherapy and support from those who have experienced the same traumas that you have. It is essential that you separate yourself from the perpetrator to avoid further harm.

If you are experiencing threatened boundaries, it will be helpful if you learn assertiveness skills, and learn to document and report behavior that is threatening or abusive to those who have the authority and ability to check those who are acting inappropriately.

Intact boundaries are the “sweet spot” of interpersonal relationships. Hopefully you have some relationships in which you can experience unconditional positive regard, support, and respect.

Expanded boundaries give you a glimpse of your higher potential. You must exercise some caution here: Many people attempt to remain in these altered states of consciousness through continued drug ingestion, or staying in a hypnotic trance or union with a spiritual essence in meditation. If you do this, you run the risk of generating hallucinations and delusions, and you can readily slip into a grandiose, manic state, or a defensive paranoid state.

Given that these are highly suggestible states, you can readily come under the control of cult leaders and spiritual teachers that are all too willing to program your values, beliefs, perception, and behavior to their specifications, and completely take over your life. We recommend that if you enter an altered state of awareness, ensure that you return to your grounded, waking state of awareness again.

The state of dissolution of boundaries is the most challenging of states. Repeated assaults on personal boundaries beyond their ability to cope can trigger psychotic decompensation in susceptible individuals. This state can also be triggered when significant spiritual and psychological imbalances occur though using inappropriate meditation techniques. They also appear when well-meaning aspirants trigger Kundalini syndromes tampering with dangerous meditation methods.

Those who are approaching merger with their Divine Ideal (Ishta Devata) must carefully manage their progress unto Beatific Union. A wrong step in these sublime heights can lead to a spiritual fall into nightmarish realms, where they are under perpetual psychic attack and they no longer have any personal boundaries.

To reconstruct your boundaries you must first be clear what levels of your boundaries have been breached. You need to get away from those who continue to violate your boundaries. You must determine what needs to be in place to avoid this boundary being broken in the future, and you need to learn whatever skills you need to protect yourself.

If you are aware that you are currently in the violation of boundaries or threatened boundaries condition in certain areas of your life, you need to do what you must to get to a place where you are safe and respected, and people care about you. If this means you have to move, move. If this means that you have to say goodbye to abusive and dysfunctional people in your life, say goodbye and edit them out of your life. If it means you have to get therapy to heal the wounds these people have wrought in you, get therapy. Do whatever you must to restore your boundaries and regain a state of emotional poise.

If you have been dabbling with altered state of consciousness, make sure you come back down to ground after each experience. Take the time to reflect upon your experiences and integrate them. Avoid fooling around with meditations that you don’t know what they do. Carefully set limits on those who want to reprogram your life to meet their own spiritual agendas, and steer clear of those who ask you to remain in altered states of awareness.

If you follow these general guidelines, you will begin to rebuild your boundaries and experience greater control over who and what you let into your life.

Those of you who grew up in a dysfunctional family or are recovering from an abusive relationship commonly have issues with boundaries. They may find our Dysfunctional Family Coaching Program helpful: it has now been released.