Beliefs

Beliefs is such a major topic that this will be an introductory post, touching on basics and a few key points.  All of Seth’s books are essentially about beliefs—both conventional ones and new, intriguing possibilities—and about how we create our individual and joint belief systems and how to change them.

I define beliefs as our thoughts, both generally and specifically, about ourselves, others, and the world we live in.  Our beliefs form our value judgments and shape our behavior.

Seth’s succinct definition is “Beliefs are thoughts reinforced by imagination and emotion concerning the nature of your reality.”

(Quote from The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 623, Chapter 5, Page 84)

We each have our own intricate belief system that creates our individual experience of the world.  And since our experience reflects back our beliefs, they become “self-proving” in a circular way, which can make them appear to be facts, rather than just beliefs.

The challenge, then, is to become aware of what our beliefs are and reassess them for their validity and value.  This reexamination gives us the opportunity to change beliefs that are limiting and unconstructive to ones that are life-enhancing and supportive.  Conscious awareness of our beliefs also brings to light conflicting beliefs, as well as conflicts between desire and belief.  Conflicting beliefs will create problems or a stalemate until the contradictions are resolved.  And whenever there’s a conflict between desire and belief, results will follow the belief, rather than the desire.

We start life with self-affirming, joyful beliefs that celebrate our uniqueness.

“You were born with an in-built recognition of your own goodness.  You were born with an inner recognition of your rightness in the universe.  You were born with a desire to fulfill your abilities, to move and act in the world.  Those assumptions are the basis of what I will call natural law.

You are born loving.  You are born compassionate.  You are born curious about yourself and your world.  Those attributes also belong to natural law.  You are born knowing that you possess a unique, intimate sense of being that is itself, and that seeks its own fulfillment, and the fulfillment of others.  You are born seeking the actualization of the ideal.  You are born seeking to add value to the quality of life, to add characteristics, energies, abilities to life that only you can individually contribute to the world, and to attain a state of being that is uniquely yours, while adding to the value fulfillment of the world.”

(Quote from The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events, Session 862, Chapter 9, Page 253)

 We immediately begin acquiring other beliefs from our families, especially our parents, and later, from the society we were born into.

As Seth explains, “This acquiescence to belief, then, is important in the early stages as infant develops into child.  This sharing of mutual ideas not only protects the new offspring from dangers obvious to the parents; it also serves as a framework within which the child can grow.”

But Seth also adds a very important point, “There is no reason, though, for an individual to be bound by childhood beliefs or experience.”

(Both quotes from The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 619, Chapter 4, Page 57).

To evolve into adulthood and a fulfilling life, beliefs need to evolve, or they’ll become too restrictive.  Beliefs that are no longer serving us, and perhaps are now harming us, should be discarded and/or replaced.  Being able to modify a belief system is fundamental when it comes to supporting the changing needs and growth of the individual.

Structurally, a belief system consists of interwoven core beliefs, defined as strongly held, generalized blanket beliefs about oneself and the world.  Many of these core beliefs come from childhood, although significant experiences in adult life can give rise to additional ones.  These core beliefs attract multiple subsidiary beliefs that both refine the core belief and expand on it.

Beliefs create expectations and emotions.  Our imagination and ultimately, our experience follow.  Habitual thoughts help reinforce our beliefs.  All of these things—emotions, expectations, imagination, experience, and habitual thoughts—along with thinking a belief is a fact, are potential areas of resistance to changing beliefs.  Different beliefs can have different types of resistance.  For instance, a core belief is likely to have strong emotional associations attached to it, while a subsidiary belief may simply be an unexamined, habitual thought.  So changing different beliefs will require different methods, depending on the strength of the belief and the areas of resistance involved.

With life’s focus being mostly on the external world, the inward concentration and honest self observation that are necessary for discovering and working with beliefs can seem daunting and even self-indulgent.  Discovering my own core beliefs and understanding all their ramifications is still a somewhat erratic, convoluted process, mostly because of the multi-layered complexity of belief systems.  And some of my most troublesome beliefs are taking a concerted effort to change.  But this new approach based on the Seth books gives me more hope than anything else ever has.  I believe that it is definitely having, and will continue to have, a positive impact on my life.  It just feels right for me, even when I recognize it won’t be right for everyone.

The Seth Books

The main Seth books are a series of channeled sessions.  They can be read in order, but can also be picked up at random, based on your personal interests.  The first book I read, and the one that remains my favorite, is The Nature of Personal Reality.  It’s filled with information I can use in my own life.  Seth described it as “an excellent handbook, one that will enable people to manipulate in the world they know with greater effectiveness.” (Quoted from The “Unknown” Reality, Vol. 1, Session 682)  My second favorite is The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events which provides practical information for relating to the world in general.

A third book that also focuses on the practical application of the Seth material is The Magical Approach: Seth Speaks About the Art of Creative Living.  It’s main focus is on using your intellect and your intuition together.  I tend to think of it as Seth-Lite because it doesn’t go into all the “behind the scenes” information his other books provide.  In some ways, it reminds me of the Abraham-Hicks books, when it comes to the depth of the material.

Personally, I need the depth of the other books in order to effectively use the concepts.  I’ve read most of the available material, and have reread significant portions of it.  Each rereading brings new insights and new ways to use the information.  The material is very complex and takes time to absorb.  Some of it I only understand on an intellectual level; some of it is still beyond my current level of understanding.  My goal is to reach the more organic, intuitive level of comprehension that is needed to truly “live the concepts.”

After reading most of the regular Seth books, I added The Personal Sessions series to my collection.  This 7 book series is expensive because of their limited availability, but they provided some valuable insights into potential difficulties in using the material as well as possible solutions.  Even with Seth’s help, Jane and Rob had multiple problems trying to change their beliefs from conventional thinking to an entirely new perspective about reality.  My main caveat for this series is that it’s definitely not for everyone.  If you were distressed by the personal struggles revealed in The Way Toward Health, which was the last book dictated before Jane’s death, you may find The Personal Sessions series overwhelming sad.  Although I gained a lot of personally useful information, I had to take breaks from reading them to recover from their emotional impact.

Another possibility worth considering is the book, A Seth Reader, edited by Richard Roberts.  It’s a compendium of excerpts from 8 individual Seth books:  The Seth Material, Seth Speaks, The “Unknown Reality” Vol. 1 & Vol. 2, The Nature of the Psyche, The Individual and the Nature of Mass Events, Dreams, “Evolution,” and Value Fulfillment Vol. 1 & Vol. 2.

Most of the Seth books can be found on Amazon (both as print editions and Kindle editions) or other online bookstores.  The Early Sessions series has been published as Kindle books, and there are plans to eventually publish The Personal Sessions series as Kindle books, although no timeline has been given.  Print editions of The Personal Sessions, as well as other hard-to-find books and audios of some of the Seth ESP class sessions, can be ordered from SethCenter.com.

Primary Concept

Practically speaking, Seth’s most important concept is that we create our own reality.

“Basically you create your experience through your beliefs about yourself and the nature of reality.  Another way to understand this is to realize that you create your experiences through your expectations.”

(Quote from The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 613, 9/11/72)

This is similar to the approach used in the Law of Attraction (LOA), in that one uses thoughts, beliefs, and imagination to create desired results.  And much of the Seth material can be superficially applied in the same way.  But a crucial difference is that when Seth says we create our own reality, he means that literally.

“The fact is that each of you create your own physical reality; and en masse, you create both the glories and the terrors that exist within your earthly experience.  Until you realize that you are the creators, you will refuse to accept this responsibility.”

(Quote from Seth Speaks, Session 511, 1/21/70)

So the essential difference is that with the LOA, you attract events, but with Seth, you create them.  This is a pretty radical, but extremely powerful concept, one worth considering because of what it implies.

“You are hardly at the mercy of a reality, therefore, that exists apart from yourself, or is thrust upon you.”

(Quote from The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 609, 4/10/72)

“The realization that you form your own reality should be a liberating one.  You are responsible for your successes and your joys.  You can change those areas of your life with which you are less than pleased, but you must take the responsibility for your being.”

(Quote from The Nature of Personal Reality, Session 615, 9/18/72)

Seth uses the word “responsibility” frequently throughout his books.  He doesn’t promise a quick fix or a problem-free life.  Nor is there a simple set of rules to follow.  Instead, he offers hope and practical tools for individuals to take charge and make changes in their lives.  For me, the most practical information in the Seth books, so far, has been related to identifying, understanding, and modifying beliefs.  I am building a brand new belief system for myself, one that is more supportive and life-enhancing than the hodgepodge of old beliefs I had assembled based on information and beliefs from others.  Other people’s beliefs never answered all my questions and never felt quite right for me, which made me feel like a misfit.

Why Seth?

Most of this blog will focus on the Seth books by Jane Roberts for the simple reason that they are making a difference in my life.  I have finally found some answers that work for me, and from a most unexpected source—metaphysics, of all things.  You see, it’s the practical application of information that matters most to me, so it didn’t occur to me that “woo-woo” metaphysics could provide me with effective tools to answer my questions, expand my understanding, and make constructive changes in my life.  Perhaps it was desperation, after decades of searching for satisfactory answers, that caused me to look beyond the conventionally accepted explanations from religion, science, and psychology.

Books by Deepak Chopra, Dr. Wayne W. Dyer, and other authors, as well as the Abraham-Hicks channeled material, encouraged me to continue exploring the field of metaphysics.  But it wasn’t until I read my first Seth book, The Nature of Personal Reality, about 4 years ago, that I knew this was what I had been looking for.  It resonated in a way that nothing else ever had.

What’s funny, and almost contradictory, is that even though I don’t fully understand all of the concepts and there’s certainly no scientific way of “proving” they’re true, my practical side doesn’t seem to care that much.  It’s willing to make changes based on the ideas, as long as they help me resolve old issues and lead to a more fulfilling life.

I also realize that these ideas are not for everyone.  They contradict most of what we have been taught all our lives.  And there are no promises made of some sort of magical transformation.  One’s life does not suddenly become trouble-free and filled only with wonderful things.  There’s not even any clear-cut set of rules to follow.

Instead, it’s a new way of looking at things, a new way of making sense of the world.  This shift in perspective can lead to new solutions and a new way of living.  But it’s left up to each individual to decide what to do with the information presented in the books.