Reply To: Subjective truth
Thanks for your post. Great questions too and lots to consider.
I personally think it is useful to think of beliefs in terms of absolute truth. Most of the core and emotional causal beliefs we hold or have held tend to be quite simplistic and “absolute.”
For example, “people can't be trusted”, “speaking in public is scary”, “spiders are dangerous” or “I am not capable.”
They preclude other possibilities and limit our perspectives.
The aforementioned beliefs, while designed to keep us safe, would have a significant impact on our expectations and behaviours.
Since most of the core beliefs are held subconsciously (and you might need to do some prodding to find them), it is very common to hold beliefs over which you intellectually disagree.
I would contend, however, that all beliefs are our subjective truth and help shape our reality.
If someone holds a belief like “people can't be trusted”, they didn't just consciously decide that some day. They were either indoctrinated by friends and family, repeatedly told things like “people can't be trusted” and/or were hurt by people – friends, lovers, strangers, family or co-workers.
When you hold a subjective truth/belief, it is literally like you can see it in the world and you tend to filter out other possibilities. It just feels very true.
I think some of the beliefs you cited feel real for you when you put them into the past tense. I totally understand why “spiders had been scary” seems to sum up your emotional experience. In fact, it probably helped cause it.
Imagine someone had the belief “spiders had been cool”, do you think they would feel fear when they saw a spider?
Different experiences will lead to those beliefs being formed but, once held, they create different experiences.
A good way to consciously assess this is to look at the belief you formed and then look at other possibilities. So, let's look at one specific example you cited.
Belief: “Spiders had been scary”
– “Maybe those spiders just looked scary, but weren't actually really scary”
– “Just because you felt fear doesn't mean they were actually scary”
– “Maybe those spiders only seemed scary, because you had certain fears and misconceptions about them and you were guided by your reactions.”
– “Maybe some of the spiders you saw were just designed to LOOK more scary, as they were in horror movies. It didn't actually mean they were scary or even real”
– “Maybe those spiders were scary, but it doesn't mean all spiders would be scary”
You could go on and on. This is just to illustrate some other possibilities.
So, a belief like “spiders had been scary” is objectively untrue, as not everyone believes that or feels afraid around them. “I was scared of spiders” or “spiders had been scary for me”, however, would be objectively true, as they encapsulate how you felt. They are descriptive, rather than causal.
If the wording does not resonate with you, due to the emotionality of the word “scary”, you can change it to something that sits better with you…or just re-word the whole sentence. However, that is probably not even necessary.
You are only pushing the unwanted belief into the past, as that is part of the mechanics employed in Belief Blasters. Trying hard to believe the unwanted belief is the other important component.
All beliefs serve or have served us in some way, but it is worth getting rid of the ones that create unpleasant experiences, emotions and conflicts, I would say. It is just a case of identifying them.
So, to that end, you might wish to look at what a certain belief (or set of beliefs) has brought to your life and whether it has outlived its usefulness.
You don't HAVE to analyse whether a belief was subjectively true, per se, as it will have been anyway. It is just about getting to the beliefs that contributed to the emotional and behavioural experience.
I hope that helps, Jesse. If I have missed anything, please let me know.
Paul McCabe – PSTEC Master Practitioner
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