The Best of Times, the Worst of Times

Q: So, what you’re saying is, the financial system is going to implode, I’m going to lose all my money, the EU is going to collapse, the USA is going to descend into chaos, Planet X is going to tag the world’s gravitational field, there’s going to be tidal waves and tsunamis and earthquakes, whole continents are going to sink underwater, new pandemics are going to sweep across the earth, there’ll be 300mph winds, record low temperatures, planes are going to fall out of the sky, plants and animals will die, there’ll be no food to eat, aliens are going to arrive and pretend to be our saviors, everything we’ve been told has been misinformation… and you say the solution is POSITIVITY?!?”

A: Pretty much, yeh.

A similar conversation is being had by many people at this point in time. For those of us who’ve been researching things for some time, it’s no longer difficult to convince others that big stuff is coming – because its already here, and everyone can see it. It’s remarkable to see the shift in people. Where once my warnings were met with “ok Tom, whatever”, now the same people are genuinely concerned. What’s now necessary, is for everyone to be very honest with themselves as to where they stand in all this.

There’s a helpful model that’s used to describe skill acquisition. This model has four ‘levels’:

Level 1: Unconsciously Incompetent (Complete Beginner)

Level 2: Consciously Incompetent

Level 3: Consciously Competent

Level 4: Unconsciously Competent (Mastery)

Let’s say that riding the wave we call reality is a SKILL, and that like any SKILL, learning the skill requires repetitive PRACTICE and STUDY. We’re bound to fail, and fail, and fail better, but with consistent focus, we eventually get the skill.

The first thing to understand is that nothing in our cultures or upbringings have prepared us for the SKILL of interacting with reality. Thus, this life is a crash course in learning this skill. There are distractions, addictions, and careless mistakes; things break; nothing works, you take everything personally, everything scares you – this is exactly what life looks like when we’re UNCONSCIOUSLY INCOMPETENT in reality. Level 1 (Unconsciously Incompetent) is, as you would expect, a complete mess. It’s ugly – a life of floundering in garbage, tossed to-and-fro by disappointments that seem to appear from nowhere.

But if you can accept that this life is a ‘crash course’, a gymnasium, a school, or any other learning-based analogy you like, then you’ve made the leap into Conscious Incompetence – Level 2. In other words, its dawns on you how inept, narrow-minded, tenuous and fragile our cultures are. And as a product of culture, you realize who that YOU have been inept, narrow-minded, tenuous and fragile. You become conscious of your own incompetence in assessing reality, because you haven’t been armed with the tools to do so.

Many people are now in Level 2 – they see the cracks in the system, they know that something is very very wrong. The danger here is that you get stuck in Level 2. The ‘secret’ – if you will – is that nothing in Level 2 will help you make the leap to Level 3. You can understand the fragility of the banking system, you can warn others from a soap box, and you can do that until the end – calling attention to it doesn’t change it. At Level 2, you’re stuck at simply pointing out the problems. The key to Level 3 is TRANSCENDENCE.

The problem with a lot of people (especially ‘new age’ types) is that they want to leap straight from Level 1 to Level 3. In other words, they think they’ve found transcendence by ignoring the true nature reality. Sorry! It doesn’t work like that. ‘Awareness’ can’t be obtained by evading anything that upsets you. The simple reason for this – if you take a good look at reality – is that you and the world are one and the same thing. Like bacteria in the stomach, our existence is symbiotic. Our joy is the world’s joy. Our complacency is the world’s complacency. Our hate is the world’s hate. We are a reflection of the world as the world is a reflection of us… Your money is the bank’s money. Child abuse and torture is endemic. We’ve been genetically manipulated. The Nazis won the war. The media is lying to you. Modern medicine is a scam. Ego is persistent, no matter how ‘spiritual’ you think you are. Sorry! In order to leap into Level 3 – Conscious Competence – you must be prepared to be fully AWARE of the true nature of reality. You don’t have to cycle the world’s problems eternally, but they must at least be FULLY ACKNOWLEDGED, before you can have some idea of what exactly you’re transcending.

The leap to Level 3 is large. The key to Level 3 is RESPONSIBILITY – responsibility to what exactly? The key to Level 3 is this simple realization: YOUR THOUGHTS ARE CREATING YOUR WORLD, ALL OF THE TIME. This is huge. This is in opposition to everything our cultures have preached. Religion says we’re sinners and must be saved. Science says most of our DNA is ‘junk’. The idea that EVERYTHING in reality is a mirror image of our thoughts is revolutionary. It is the cutting edge. It is the avant-garde pivot that will turn this world inside out.

This concept is so profound, that it requires a clarity of thinking and authenticity that few have ever experienced. To be 100% responsible for our thoughts – to be truly accountable, to the be start and end of all that we experience, inside and out – that’s an easy path to talk, but the proof is in the walk.

I’ll be honest, I’m currently learning Level 3. Progress can be slow, progress can be fast – but I know enough to say that Level 3 does not resemble Level 2 in any way. It is truly a different way of being. Stepping out of the debilitating messages of Level 2 and walking the walk of Level 3 is interesting, to say the least.

The reason it’s so fascinating is this – and get ready, here’s the punchline:

What Level 3 is asking – Conscious Competence – is for me and you to be fully competent and responsible human beings…


Let’s go back to the opening… “financial collapse, martial law, pandemics, natural disasters, famine, alien invasions… and I’m supposed to transcend ALL THIS?” – In a word YES!

How can you reconcile the necessity to evolve into a truly responsible Human, when everything seems to be falling apart? And then you come back to the key to Level 3: only YOU are responsible for your own experience… the disintegration of our cultures is directly proportional to our ability to transcend them. IS IT ONE AND THE SAME PHENOMENON. This experience is the EXACT MIRROR IMAGE of our collective. It is not happening to us. It is not happening in spite of us.

It is happening FOR and BECAUSE of us.

Its only once we realize this that we can truly choose what reality we want to experience: Conscious Competence.




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