Marshall, Gene, The Enigma of Consciousness, Realistic Living Press, Bonham, TX, 2012. Chapter 14.
Autonomous Strength (excerpts from Chapter 14 please read the original material for complete context)
1) Autonomous Strength is an aspect of the I Am that stands between the quality of solitude described as Transparent Attention and the quality of solitude described as Primal Merging.
2) Autonomous Strength is the core aspect of solitude.
3) Autonomous means that we are realizing the solitary dimension of the I Am, that we are moving beyond the need for other-directedness of any sort.
4) We see that we have no need for approval from or status among others.
5) We have no need to be judged in terms of outward achievements, physical qualities, and mental capabilities.
6) The term strength refers to an inward quality of invincibility.
7) In the Hindu collection of goddesses, there is a deity named Kali.
8) She is pictured with a two-edged sword and a belt of skulls.
9) She is seen as a goddess of destruction, but as we access her meaning more fully, we find her as a primal quality of the I Am.
10) We can view her as the slayer of all falsehood.
11) When we arrive at the deep places of our autonomous being, we experience the sword of Kali slicing away every self-image, every habit of the personality, every identification with the temporal aspects of our being, every hope of avoiding the full impact of our finitude.
12) As all these impediments are slain, we find our true strength.
13) We are Kali.
14) We are the invincible truth of our existence.
15) Nothing whatsoever can touch us or oppose us.
16) We are supported by the Ground of our Being in being a fire of destruction toward everything that is false, illusory, partial, incomplete, weak, silly, sentimental, or foolish.
17) Swinging the sword of Kali is what it means to have the courageous heart of loving our True Selves.
18) This Autonomous Strength can break through our personality habits as a state of being that happens to us from time to time.
19) And we can also come to recognize this quality as a permanent station of the I Am that we never need to leave.
Read sentences 1 3. What is the meaning of Autonomous (3) How do you experience other-directedness in your life What are examples What would it mean to move beyond that need
Read 4. What would it look like to have no need for approval from other people
Read 5. Has anyone here ever experienced a need to be acknowledged for outward achievements, physical qualities, or mental capabilities What examples can you share What does autonomous strength have to do with this (5)
What does it mean to be invincible (6)
Read 7 10. Who is the goddess Kali
Who can share an example of Kalis sword slicing away some dimension of our self-image..........some dimension of a habit of personality.an identification with the temporal aspects of being..a hope of avoiding the full impact of our finitude (10) How would you describe Kali as active in your life today
Read 12. What do we find when these impediments are slain
Read 13, 14, and 15. Who are we really What does this mean
Read 16. Who supports us What examples can you share of something the Ground of Being might destroy in a fire of destruction that is.false..... illusory......partial.........incomplete.......weak......silly.....sentimental..... or foolish
Read 17. What does this have to do with our true selves
Read 18 and 19. What is special about this state of being
What question of this material would you like to discuss with the author for further clarification or guidance .(How would anyone else address this question)
How might I live my life differently because of the awareness provoked in this material
What personal practices might be indicted from the encounter with this material