Full Permission Living is a place of being. Having moved from awareness to understanding to knowing, a person at this level of their development is simply a human… being. Eva Broch, in Pathwork Guide Lecture #127, delineates the four stages of the evolution of consciousness this way: “automatic reflex, awareness, understanding and knowing.” (See Lecture #127 in this month’s reading assignment). Spinning off from that lecture, I think of the movement through the four stages of consciousness like this: awareness, understanding, knowing and being.

Awarenessand understanding come by freeing up the mind. This is accomplished first by clearly seeing what is going on in one’s inner and outer life (awareness), and then making the cause and effect connections about the events (understanding). Awareness can begin increasing right in the first session with the therapist, acting as a mirror, offering some initial reflections and assessments. Often in a first session, a patient may say in response to the therapist’s observations: “Oh! I never realized that before.” In other words, awareness has been activated.

Understanding comes somewhat afterwards as connections are made mentally between past and present events and repetitive patterns that were previously thought of as mysterious or cruelly random. Reality is now seen in a more predictable light, and hidden agendas, intentions and beliefs are accepted as personally created realities.

Knowing comes with freeing up the emotions in the body. It is only from our gut, from within our bodies, that we can ever say “I know” something with certainty. That is why we say, “I just feel it”, when we are definite about something. The person who truly feels, knows their own truth confidently. Getting to a place of knowing takes hard work and determined effort. In addition to developing awareness and understanding, one must now undertake the “breaking” of the body’s defenses and armoring, and really feel, especially, at first, the difficult feelings of sorrow, rage and fear. This is the “point of no return.” If a person breaks through here they will never “go back” to their previous levels of functioning. They are on their way to being.

Being is just living, spontaneously and naturally, and comes from letting go. Of everything! It is living without attachment. Although awareness, understanding and knowing are part of being, they are incorporated now without effort, without thinking in the usual sense. Basic trust has been firmly re-established, but now combined with the knowledge, courage and wisdom of an adult.


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