This post is excerpted from Lightning Path Workbook One: Basic Concepts.
In the past units, we have talked about the nature of connection and provided the key to initiating connection. This is good to get you started, but there is a lot more that you have to learn. In this unit, we want to continue learning basic LP concepts and technique by extending our discussion of intent/will and looking at the very important spiritual technique, visualization.
As noted elsewhere,1 visualization is critical to spiritual connection. If the physical body is a vehicle for spirit (which it is), and if your spiritual ego (your soul or spirit) gets into the body to drive around physical creation (which it does), then visualization is the wheel that you use to steer the vehicle. When it comes to driving the physical vehicle, visualization is what gets you where you want to go.
The idea behind the visualization is very simple, and identical to the idea of prayer (i.e. send a request to the universe) and “attraction.” If you want something, put an image of it in your head, and keep that image there. Doing so will begin to draw the energies necessary to manifest your intent. It is a question of as above in consciousness, so below in matter, as we like to say. Energy follows intent, and since visualization is a focused and easy-to-maintain form of intent, visualization is the wheel that steers the vehicle. If you want to engage the process connection, then intent (last unit) and visualization (this unit) are key.
Clear and Precise Images
At this point, a question that must emerge is that if visualization is the steering wheel, then how do you do use it to steer? In this regard, clear and precise images are the key. A visualization is a vision, an image. To give the vision the most power, have a clear, concrete, and precise image in mind. This is not as hard as you might think. It is really just a question of practice. The more you practice visualization, the more clear and precise your images will be.
How do you practice visualization? That is easy. You practice it by doing it. Close your eyes and visualize a picture, an object, or an outcome in your reality. If you have trouble doing that, start simple. Hold a simple object like a glass or a book in your hand, look at it for a few seconds noticing its shape, colour, and texture, and then close your eyes; but, keep the image in your mind. If there is nothing there to begin with, do not worry. Keep practicing. Do this a few times a day for a few weeks and your power to visualize will develop and grow.
Clear, concrete and precise images in your mind are not the only requirement for successful visualization. Another requirement is persistence. If you want your visualizations to work, you have to hold them in your mind for extended periods, especially when the thing you want to manifest is complex, or there is resistance involved. As far as keeping a persistent visualization in mind, that is simply a question of discipline. If you want to be successful, you have to find some way to remind yourself each day what it is you want to manifest, and you have to repeatedly and clearly visualize the outcome. It is not rocket science; it is just a question of clarity and persistence. You can use sticky notes, objects (e.g. pictures, strings), or even apps to remind you to visualize. You can also set aside a certain amount of time each day for the visualizations. You can do whatever you want. There are no hard and fast rules here so explore! Find techniques and strategies that work for you, and use those.
Of course, this all seems sensible and straightforward and in a way it is; but two things can get in your way of clear and persistent vision. First, depending on the training you got as a child, you may or may not have developed the ability to visualize. Visualization is a skill, not a talent or a gift, and this skill needs to be developed. Typically, it is developed with right brain sorts of activities like music, art, dance, gameplay, certain types of math, creative writing, and so on. If you have a hard time with visualization, and if you look back on your childhood and see a lack of creative training, know it is never too late to start. If you want to develop your ability to visualize, use the practice suggestions above, but do more as well. Pick up a musical instrument, dance, sing, draw, play games, practice (close your eyes and imagine beaches and warm breezes), colour in a book, move (e.g., yoga, judo, tai-chi), and so on.
And please, take this advice seriously. We are not recommending these things to fill up space on this page. We are recommending them because visualization is important. If you want to learn to visualize, heck if you just want to be a whole human being, you need balanced development of your brain. Balanced development of your physical brain is an essential prerequisite of full human expression. It is also an essential requirement for spiritual advancement not only for this beginner level but also for advanced levels as well.
Besides lack of creative training as a child, the second thing that can get in the way of visualization is simple lack of a good vision. This is particularly true when it comes to the early stages of healing and connection. Without direct experience of each of these aspects of human development, the concepts are all a bit abstract. What is worse, things you read about them (in Bibles, in New Age literature, even in scientific circles) are often not much help. There is a lot of misunderstanding and confusion when it comes to spiritual connection. The problem for us here is, if we do not understand what it is we are visualizing, or if we only have abstract ideas, we cannot come up with an effective/accurate visualization.
Visualizing forward movement on a spiritual path is not like visualizing clear and concrete things like a new job, a new house, a wedding ring, or whatever. What does “spiritual connection” look like, after all?
It can seem like a real conundrum, especially for those just starting out; but it is not. You should already know one very powerful awakening visualization, which is the Water Glass Metaphor mentioned earlier. To make the metaphor a visualization, simply replace the word “metaphor” with the word “visualization.” To do the Water Glass Visualization, simply visualize your body as an empty glass of water and visualize consciousness as water pouring into the glass. Visualize the glass (your physical body) filling up from bottom to top. When it is full, if you want, visualize the water flowing over the edge of the glass and spilling out into the world around you. Do this visualization as many times a day as you can remember and before you know it, Consciousness will be expanding into your body and your whole world will change.
You can modify the water glass visualization in different ways. One way to make it more spiritual, for example, is by visualizing light streaming into your body through your head (i.e. crown chakra) and dispersing in scintillating diamond-like patterns, throughout the various “pathways” (i.e., nerve cells, arteries, etc.) of your body. You can also speed up the process by increasing the quantity of light streaming into the body. Visualize a stronger, more powerful connection by visualizing a powerful, intense, flow of light into the top of your head, through your brain and body, and out into the world around.
The water glass visualization is clear and concise. It is also powerful. Do not doubt that for a second! The Water Glass Visualization will help you connect, awaken, activate and transform very rapidly. Even better, you can use it right now without knowing all the details of what will happen up front. Be careful though, and remember earlier advice. You have control of the process. If things get too scary and confusing, stop intending, stop visualizing, and take some time off to talk, process, integrate and ground the shifts and transformations. Remember, this is not a race, and there is no reward for finishing ahead of others. Slow and steady is the safest way to go.
For best effect, when you are ready to get started on the process of awakening, visualize and recite an awakening affirmation (e.g. “I wish to move forward” or “I wish to connect”) and use some variant of the water glass visualization to initiate the process. As a final warning, avoid straying too far from the meditation and visualization guidance provided here, at least at the start. In particular, do not use meditations, affirmation, or mantra you find from other locations unless you fully understand them. Anybody can cobble together an affirmation and visualization, but not everybody knows exactly what it is they are doing, and not everybody has good intent. Even slight misconceptions or subtly shifted visuals can lead to unintended and even disastrous consequences. Remember, you are playing with the fire of Consciousness here. Be cautious; be careful; discern.
Before moving on, we have a few final things to say about this process of visualization and intent. First of all, be aware that visualization and intent, as practiced on the LP is different from the venal “attraction” popularized by The Secret in some key ways. For one, visualization, as practiced on the LP, is not a passive process—it is an active and willful one. When you visualize and intend, you do not sit back and pray for attraction to kick in or something to be given to you, you make a demand of the universe and you work your ass off to get it. When you visualize you say, “I want this and I want this now,” but you have to use your hands and legs to help get it as well. It is necessary. If you think the universe is just going to drop prosperity down on your head, you have another thing coming. If you are one of the lucky few to be born into wealth or win a lottery, good for you; but the rest of the planet needs willful intent and active, engaged creation. Make a demand of the universe and push the issue.
Second, it is important to recognize, visualization and intent are not profane processes, they are deeply and essentially spiritual. For your information, to profane something means, according to Merriam-Webster, to 1) treat (something sacred) with abuse, irreverence, or contempt: desecrate; or 2) to debase by a wrong, unworthy, or vulgar use. In this context, to use intent/visualization to attract power and prosperity is a profane use of affirmation and visualization. You can do it, and that is fine. Visualization and intent are equally about connection as the are about living a happy. There is nothing particularly wrong with using visualization and affirmation to help create a good life for you and yours. There is nothing wrong with willing prosperity,2unless you do that without regard for others, and at the expense of collective or planetary well being. If you do that, you are a threat to the survival of humanity and the planet. Attract financial prosperity all you like, but be sure to put the spiritual side of this spiritual technique at the demanding forefront of your intent and visualization regime. The goal of the spiritual technique you use on the LP is not to enrich yourself over others and have more than you need so you can live in empty mansions and drive fancy cars. The goal is connection and the betterment of all life. You are wasting your life, and profaning the process, if you just focus on money and profit for yourself.
Third, keep in mind this truth, visualization is a positive process, always. That is, not thinking about something, not visualizing it, pretending something does not exist, ignoring it, sticking your head in the proverbial sand, what we might call, with tongue in cheek, negative visualization,3 does not work! Just because you refuse to think about something does not mean it will not happen. Nobody runs around thinking they are going to get hit and killed by a drunk driver, but some people do get killed regardless. Similarly, just because you refuse to think about war in the Middle East, or war in America, does not mean war will not happen in those places. It can happen because some people, for reasons like greed, are intending it so. You have to remember, there are many people painting on the canvas of this Earth, and you are just one. If all the hawks in the US are busy visualizing and intending war in the Middle East, and you engage in wishful non-thinking, pretending that out of sight means out of manifestation, then all the hawks will get their way.
Pretend all you want but remember this, pretending a thing does not exist does not mean it does not, or will not exist. In fact, exactly the opposite is the case. Not paying attention, not intending, leaves spaces for others to create whatever they want. Keep this principle always in mind: If you are not drawing energy toward a reality that you want, the intent of those who are will “trump” your blissful non-attention. The universe works this way. Creation is an active process, always. Creation always requires an image and intent. We cannot, should not, and would not, in a million years, underestimate the importance of this key creative principle. Creation is active and if you want to create you have to engage actively. If you erase imagery and intent, you erase your influence on reality. If you do not apply the force of intention, those who do will always get their way.
Finally, number four, keep in mind this next very important fact: visualization is not just about creating things or attracting things. Attraction and creation work hand in hand with repulsion and even destruction. Attraction/creation, repulsion/destruction are both sides of the same creative coin. If you do not like something, if you do not like somebody, you have the spiritual power and ability to draw a boundary and exclude or even destroy. If you do not want war in the Middle East, think about the soldiers going away. If you do not want some violent and abusive bully in your circle of friends, draw a visual circle (i.e. a boundary) around yourself and push the bully out, gently and with compassion. If you do not like violence, put a big X in your mind along with the words “NO MORE VIOLENCE.” The process is simple. There is no excuse not to do it, especially when we are all under threat. Use intent and visualization to attract what you want (for example connection or utopia) but also use intent and visualization to repulse what you do not (like war, famine, and greed). You will be surprised at just how good this Law of Repulsion4 works for you, especially as more and more people put aside their ideologically programmed aversion to it5 and get with the program. Remember, it is not about morality; it is about keeping yourself and your family protected, and saving the planet.
Moving forward, recite connection affirmation and do the Water Glass Visualization. Always remember, the best progress is made if you are persistent and consistent. Recite your connection affirmation and do the water glass visualization for a few seconds several times a day and it will not take too long before noticeable shifts begin to occur.
Assess your ability to visualize. Can you see pictures in your mind’s eye when you close your eyes? If not, what are some things you need to do right now to increase your ability to visualize? Write down your thoughts in the margin or in your HC Journal. If you are a part of a group, share with the group and discuss. You can also share in the LP Forums.
Visualization is important. It is a key to the process. However, to visualize you need a good vision. What basic connection visualization and affirmation combinations might you recommend to newbies on the spiritual path and why? Is it safe to recommend just any old visualization/affirmation? Why?
Explore your past spiritual training. How is LP intent/visualization different from other intent/visualization found in other schools of thought, like The Secret? Do you find passive and venal prayer/intent in your traditions? What other differences do you notice? Share your past training and new way of thinking with the group.
1 Sharp, The Great Awakening: Concepts and Techniques for Successful Spiritual Practice.
2Of course, you can try to realize prosperity through simple attraction, but in most cases that will probably fail, especially right now when the economic system of this planet is so out of balance and skewed (read Rocket Scientists’ Guide to Money and the Economy). We are not saying this to discourage your attempts to attract prosperity; by all means, try! We are just saying, under the current global economic regime, the gap between rich and poor is increasing, with more poor people appearing all the time. Try to attract prosperity all you want, but if you fail, if things do not work out, do not blame yourself, the universe, or visualization. Blame the people responsible for the predatory economic system that disadvantages so many, while privileging so few. If you do not place responsibility at the footstep of those responsible, you will end up depressed, debilitated, and disempowered. Moreover, do not worry if prosperity does not work out. As “the shift” progresses and the planet transforms, global prosperity for all will come, so hang in there. In the meantime, keep the idea of prosperity in the back of your mind, but remember why you are here.
3Negative visualization is the blocking out of ideas or images in the mind, as if pretending something does not exist necessary means it does not. For more on negative visualization, see http://spiritwiki.lightningpath.org/Negative_Visualization/.
4The Law of Repulsion is a law of intent/visualization that states removal of unpleasant realities requires active and engaged repulsion. For more, see http://spiritwiki.lightningpath.org/Law_of_Repulsion.
5By this we mean, you are taught not to repulse. From a very early age the priests and the pundits and the spiritual “teachers” discourage you from pushing things away. You are taught to accept whatever life sends your way because it is part of your “lesson plan,” part of the “checkboard,” or part of God’s plan. There is a “light side” and a “dark side,” and that is just the way God wants it to be. You have to accept the bad with the good. Shit happens. Just put up, toughen up, shut up, and accept. It is all horseshit though. You do not have to accept anything “life” sends your way and in fact, you should not. You should realize, this is just a euphemism for being boundary-less and open to exploitation. Stop accepting the bullshit. Reject it, revile it, and push it away with all your visualization might.