A Voice in the Wilderness
DOES IT TAKE 10,000 HOURS
TO ACHIEVE MASTERY IN LIVING?
Editor’s Note: For the next several months this space will be used to explore — one-by-one — the messages, metaphysical principles, and spiritual meaning of the material found in the nearly 3,000 pages of the Conversations with God dialogues. This series of observations and interpretations is offered with my continuing disclaimer: I could be wrong about all of this.
CWG Explored/Installment #7: How long does Mastery take?
In my last column here I wrote:
What does it take to change the Self? What is required to transmogrify? Does it take a long, long time? Years and years of study, effort, and practice? Was Malcolm Gladwell right in his 2008 book, Outliers, in which he hypothesized that it takes 10,000 hours to reach mastery at anything? Could this include reaching mastery at Mastery?
I promised that I would touch on this in my next entry of this series…and so here we are. And the answer, as most of you know, is no, it does not take 10,000 hours to reach mastery at Mastery.
First of all, in my awareness it is not a question of reaching Mastery, but of returning to it. There is nothing we have to learn — not a single thing — to “reach mastery.”
In my lectures and spiritual renewal workshops I often point to a tree outside the window and ask, “What has that magnificent oak, standing there in its majesty under the splendor of its canopy, learned in the years of its growth?”
The answer, of course, is: “Nothing. Not a thing. Everything the tree needed to know to become its glorious self was encoded in the seed, no bigger than your fingernail, from which it sprung. The tree had merely to grow into what it was programmed at the outset to always become.
“Now if God so loved the tree that it encoded in its seed everything it needed in order to become what it was created to become, would God not all the more encode you?”
The answer, of course, is “Yes.” And God has.
Therefore, there is nothing for you to learn, and it does not take 10,000 hours to learn nothing. “Ah, but,” — you might say — “it took 10,000 hours and more for the tree to grow into the fullness of its magnificent self.” And that, indeed, is true. Growth takes time.
Growth for humans takes no time at all, because we are not talking about physical growth — we are not talking about growth of the Body (or even the Mind) — we are talking about growth of the Soul . . . and such a thing is not only not required, it is impossible.
That which is whole cannot grow to become whole. That which is complete cannot grow to become complete. That which exists in its ultimate totality cannot grow to become its ultimate totality. It already is that which the Mind might imagine that it seeks to become.
The Soul simply desires to experience that which it Already and Always Is: the Individuation of Divinity, the Expression of Divine Consciousness in Singular Form. Or, if you please, a Singularization of The Singularity.
So if growth is not necessary, then what is necessary for humans to reach the State of Mastery?
Awareness. And its expansion.
And this is a function of the Mind, not of the Soul, as I have experienced it.
The Journey of the Soul through Time and Space is the process by which the Soul expands the Awareness of the Mind, so that the Mind may then use the Body to express and experience in physicality the total being’s True Nature and Only Identity.
Thus, the three-part being that constitutes every member of the human species becomes the living expression of Divinity — or the out-picturing, if you will, of that which was encoded in its DNA (Divine Natural Awareness) at the outset.
(Of course, there is no such thing as the outset, since “outset” suggests a “beginning” — and no such thing exists in the realm of Time/No Time within which Divinity expresses).
And so, it takes no Time at all to achieve Mastery. Yet it may take what you call “time” in your illusory world for your Mind to experience Mastery, and your Body to demonstrate it.
Even within the context of your illusory world, however, this is not a process of learning or achieving or becoming something you are not, but of simply realizing and expressing what you are, have always been, and will always be.
This can be experienced in “Earth time” in an instant. It does not have to take 10,000 hours. And it can if you wish it to, or if you think that it must. But it can also be experienced in an instant. And, indeed, it has been already for nearly every human being.
Many people can remember a time when, for whatever reason, and perhaps only for the blink of an eye, they suddenly and inexplicably “knew” everything. They knew who they were, they knew themselves as one with all, they knew that there was nothing they had to do to fully experience their reason for being here, they knew the deep peace and simple joy that comes from knowing that.
There is scarcely a person anywhere who has not had at least one such instant, one moment of what we have come to call “mastery” of life on this planet. It may have been when they were nine minutes old, or nine weeks old, or nine months old, or nine years old, or nineteen years old, or ninety years old, or in one of the moments between, but they, and most of us, have had at least one instant in which total mastery of life was experienced.
Of course, a statement like that begs the question: What is “mastery”? How is it defined?
For me, “mastery” is defined as “the fullest expression of the fullness of my being.” That is, the total expression of the totality of my Self.
Yet in order for me to know and to recognize that I have had such an experience, I would have to know (and be able to explain to my Mind) what my “Self” is.
What is the Self that I am seeking to express in fullness?
We’ll look at that next.