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By Nikita Mor
Personal growth is a cyclical process of recurring highs and lows, rather than a strict linear path, as is commonly believed. The cyclical process does not mean that the person returns to square one, but instead reaches a higher state of awareness and perception thus facilitating personal growth.
Breakdowns can lead to breakthroughs and vice versa, but there needs to be a major factor that disturbs the current status quo. The changes may not be externally visible, but can be internally evident in one’s subconscious. Our subconscious often stores unresolved trauma and pain, but also possesses the potential for self-actualization.
Let us consider this in terms of scientific analogies and also those of eastern philosophical spirituality. We can start with the most simplistic example borrowing from the cyclical nature of seasons. Seasons repeatedly come and go, but time changes. The earth rotates around its axis in the same place, but also moves making cyclic revolutions around the sun.
The commonly perceived notion of the ‘arrow of time’ which assumes that time moves forward is being questioned by various scientific researchers who are challenging this claim, and proposing different theories.
One of them is that time is non-linear if we are to take into account the parallel universe theory. Wormholes or black holes may be believed to be entrances into parallel universes or extra dimensions functioning in a different space-time continuum. Scientists are proposing the theory of a holographic universe, which suggests that we could be living in a 2D hologram, with the universe appearing as 3D to us. Like an image on a television screen, each ‘pixel’ can only contain a finite amount of information, and the human intellect may also be limited by the amount of information that space-time can contain. Scientists are also questioning the Big Bang theory as the origin of the universe. By using a computer model simulation of particles under the influence of gravity, they observed that particles would evolve into a “low-complexity state”, and then expand outwards in both temporal directions, creating opposite arrows of time – one forward and one backwards.
These theories are asking critical questions, which question the foundations of scientific and religious claims. With regards to philosophically spiritual questions, ascending to higher frequencies of consciousness may also be cyclical, moving forward or backward. If we consider the dualities of Eastern philosophy, which considers yin-yang, masculine-feminine, good-evil, love-hate etc. we fluctuate between the extremities. This was also proved in quantum sciences in the particle-wave theory, where a particle simultaneously functions both as a particle and a wave. Anti-matter versus matter, gravity and anti-gravity, universe and anti-universe, are other examples.
If we are to go beyond dualities, we can take this further and try to understand how we can escape the cycle of action-reaction, and also simultaneously grow as authentic and realized human beings.
If we go too far in one direction, it will precede the other. In order to maintain a balance, we can choose to inculcate the positive polarities rather than the negative polarities. This can be explained very simple in layman terms in astrology, as embodying the best characteristics of two opposing zodiac signs to reach a higher state. Example: The zodiac sign of Libra adopts the positive qualities of Aries in order to become actualized, and vice versa.
The observer theory in quantum physics claims that the presence of the observer changes the experiment. Mindfulness meditation functions on the principle that the observer is the observed. If we are to consider the holographic nature of the universe, and accept that we are subjectively biased then the trajectory of time could very well be an illusion of the limited capability of the human brain.
Ancient Eastern Hindu Philosophy states that the earth moves in cycles of time progression every 26,000 years. Mankind’s intelligence gradually increases, reaches a peak and then gradually decreases, and then starts to ascend again. Social theories prove that civilizations are born and destroyed, and are followed by more advanced or less intelligent civilizations. If a person can reach an upper state of enlightenment, then they can also regress lower if not handled with proper knowledge, care and responsibility.
New-age theories claim that each time there is a rare alignment in the stars, it opens up a portal to higher planes of ascension where we grasp signs, synchronicities, inspiration and ideas through our intuition and intellect. This can be cross-referenced to the scientific wormhole or black-hole theory about the existence of parallel universes. If we are to combine both theories, this can suggest some kind of parallel ascension phenomenon as is believed in Eastern Philosophy as a higher guidance or higher selves guiding us and so on.
The above examples do not serve to answer big scientific or philosophical questions, but have merely been used to suggest that perhaps there is more to universe than meets the eye and even the mind. If we are to consider this in terms of personal growth, we can reference the scientific fractal theory. Fractality is the study of macroscopic units that have the potential to evolve over time, and thus they collectively make up much more than the sum of the whole.
We can effectively balance pain and pleasure, by learning to become fully aware of our own light-dark sides and all the shades of grey in between. Fluctuating between arbitrary free-will and determinism, we can choose to ascend by accepting that our descent is temporary and an inevitable part of life, but this does not mean that we are not healing, growing and evolving into something much bigger beyond human comprehension.
The next time you feel overwhelmed by waves of emotion, take a deep breath and process it by being conscious of the physical sensations in your body. Awareness does to the body, what knowledge does to the mind. It transmutes it to create tremendous potential for change and personal growth.
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