How can you tell if you have a faulty belief system in place?
The one way to be sure is to recognise that you have a fault and that no matter how hard you try you can’t change it. Or, it’s there and has been pushed so far back into your subconscious that you don’t even know it’s there anymore. However, there will be other faults that you can’t change and they will probably stem from this hidden belief. As you work through your beliefs you might find that they all stem from this hidden bee incident (mentioned in part 1).
Your fear of being trapped in a corner, your fear of upsetting your mother, phobia of flying insects; all evolving and drawing their power from this one childhood impression. As you grow into adulthood your Ego might start building new types of camouflage systems to cover up the embarrassment of your initial phobia. Suddenly you may find that you can’t go outside anymore, you can’t commit to relationships and you are allergic to certain animals. What began as a survival instinct to avoid a threat of pain has now become a crutch that you cling to. Your belief has taken over your whole life.
Admittedly this is probably taking the point to the extremes but in most cases the bad experience of childhood can be far more dramatic than what I have described. I’m surprised any of us ever leave our beds at all. We are so intricately woven with cleverly disguised systems of protection that the pure joy of a free spirit eludes us. No wonder so many of the prophets have extolled the virtue of being as a child.
The first steps to finding these beliefs are to sit down and start brain storming. You need to get this stuff down on paper and as quickly as you possibly can. Don’t spend time making it neat and spell checking everything. Just start writing a list of beliefs that you have. Every time you experience an emotion then stop, think what the belief is behind that emotion and add it to the list. It doesn’t matter if you had it before, write it again. Add the emotion in brackets if you are repeating yourself. You may find that the same belief triggers two opposite emotions! How is that even possible?
I was watching some kids standing on a raised roundabout, in the middle of a busy traffic system. It was wide enough and high enough to support trees, shrubbery and a large population of rabbits. The boys stood there on this island of paradise, amidst the snarling traffic. As I watched them my initial reaction was a smile, then jealousy, which quickly progressed into anger. I have often wanted to stand on that mound but I know it’s wrong; it has to be breaking the law, its bad – isn’t it?
Who says though and why am I so angry at these boys for doing something that I want to do. As an adult I have built systems of belief that help me to conform to society. I must follow all the rules and therefore freedom and spontaneity are not points on my moral and social compass. The worse that could happen would be a policeman would ask me to move on, for my own safety. If I wasn’t spotted I could picnic with the rabbits, blank out the speeding cars and commune with nature in the middle of an industrial estate.
Because there were so many emotions involved in this one event it may take me some time to work through all the beliefs involved. I may need to add several beliefs to my list and later on see if they are part of a larger ‘Core Belief’, which I will eventually work on. We will discuss these core beliefs in part 3.