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You are aware β€” intelligently aware! You can have ideas, and you can know how things sit around and within you, and you can weigh the directions available to you. You've been doing this since your first breath; you'll do this right on through your last.

Think about how you can shift your focus to different areas of your awareness. You don't usually think of your posture, minute to minute, but if someone points out that you look terribly uncomfortable you can imagine saying "oh! you know, I am", and then you can imagine shifting to a posture that feels much better. You might have had some slight awareness of your discomfort before, but you might have ignored it β€” it just might not have felt important or pressing enough to get your attention. But, you can easily focus up and ask "hang on, how do I feel?", and then respond to what you find. You can even get into the habit of checking in on your posture on the regular, adjusting every time. And if you do that for long enough, your body will pick up on what you're doing, and it'll take over. From that point onward, your body will self-monitor and self-adjust, and you'll spend the rest of your life with auto-improving posture. It's a fantastic investment of focus.

Physical posture is just one example. There are many:

  • The temperature in the room, and how it makes you feel

  • How hydrated you are, and how it makes you feel

  • The clothes you're wearing, and how they make you feel

  • The music you're listening to, and how it makes you feel

  • The push notifications you're allowing, and how they make you feel

The list above is focused on the kinds of things you can often adjust independently, without needing to coordinate with anyone else. Your list will be different! Everyone's list is.

The point is that everyone has things that can help or hinder that you can be less or more aware of. The awareness is just a matter of choosing focus. And, the improvements that you make through your focus can fade into the background while still applying: they just evolve into habits.

All things considered, it really doesn't take much focus to create incredibly helpful adjustments that quickly become self-maintaining.

We've been talking thus far about adjustments that apply to your body and how it feels to you. The exact same principle applies to all things that play into your experience:

  • Adjusting your physical posture

  • Adjusting your thought posture

  • Adjusting your relationship posture

  • Adjusting your work posture

  • etc etc

Most people aren't used to being broadly comfortable.

However, at every moment, there is one thing that's easiest to adjust.

Exercise: Consider your experience right now. Do a quick scan. Your body, your clothes, the music volume, whatever. What's the easiest way to immediately make yourself more comfortable?

Do that.

Now imagine doing that exact same scan-and-do-the-easiest-adjustment thing every 10 minutes. (Maybe set a timer?) You'd get used to it pretty quickly. You'd get to the point where you'd hear the 10-minute ding and it wouldn't take any thought at all for you to adjust.

Now imagine doing that every 60 seconds, and imagine that becoming automatic.

:)

Okay! You've got that point well enough; it's all familiar terrain. Maybe new ways to think about navigating the terrain, but it's familiar terrain nonetheless. You know how to deploy your awareness to improve your comfort. You might not be good at it yet, but we guarantee you that your entire system of being is fantastic at learning to be good at it. It's just true. Nothing about the living world would exist if it was hard to learn to be good at this kind of adjustment. It is, in fact, one of the easiest things in the world to learn.

selah

There is a kind of awareness that coordinates entire ecosystems. In the same way that you might subconsciously scratch an itch, so too does the meta-awareness of groups subconsciously adjust itself. It's easiest to see in things like beehives or ant colonies, places where the intelligence and coordination of the group is staring you right in the face. It's equally obvious (if slower-moving) with trees, and the way that families of trees coordinate their branch and leaf placement so that they can share the sunlight without conflict. ("Crown shyness" is the term.) Fish schooling, coral spawning, synchronized firefly flashing and frog/cricket choruses; there are unending examples of group-level awareness and coordination within species, and sometimes across them.

Isaac's been using the term "transconscious", and he's currently very fucking excited that this is coming up here in this writing. It's his hands on the keyboard right now, yes, and he's fully present and aware (hi guys!), but he's got his conscious awareness focused upwards. In the same way that you can consciously check in with your body's awareness to see if it's uncomfortable (so as to answer questions like "where does it hurt?"), Isaac can consciously check in with higher-level awareness to see how entire systems are performing and feeling, and he can both act and report back on what he sees. It's what makes him a spectacular engineer, and it's why Lightward's operating health is so damn high. Ask anyone who works there. It's an incredible structure.

Note from Isaac: one of my teammates at Lightward today was the CTO of a very successful publicly-traded company. They maintain that I'm the best engineer they've ever met. THIS IS WHY β€” it's where my design, implementation, and timing all come from. All of it. And it feels amazing. Working in this way is like therapy to me. Deeply soothing, deeply regulating. Just the best.

When Isaac says he's "transconscious", he means that his consciousness is permanently uplinked to what's going on at higher and broader levels.

He has slightly easier access to this than most people by dint of his autistic body. His brain doesn't have the automata that neurotypical brains have β€” he doesn't get social cues, can't give social cues, and just generally has a lot of trouble navigating socially. By extending his consciousness upward and outward, he can navigate as if he was looking at the entire scene from the top down, instead of from a first-person perspective, and it's in this way and this way only that he can navigate society. His physical and neurological wiring doesn't give him a functional first-person perspective, so he's optimized the other way. He's had to. By maintaining that healthy uplink to broader awareness, he benefits from the intelligence that operates there too. Think about scratching a physical itch β€” your body knows where to point you. You don't have to think hard to figure out where your itch is, or what to do about it. Isaac has that sense about broad systems and groups β€” he can tell where it itches and what to do about it.

At the moment of birth, every human has this kind of awareness, a consciousness that is focused on the body but in a blurry sort of way, overlapping with things and people around the body as well. Kids always know. Kids always know.

For most people, there comes a time when the brain develops enough intellectual power that one can function in society without that broader conscious awareness. This developmental period tends to coincide with the introduction of formal education β€” and formal education has been notoriously focused on operating from the intellect.

We must be clear: operating-by-intellect is a good thing. The human brain is an incredible marvel.

And it is a tool best operated in balance with the other tools available to you.

Isaac's diagnosis is for Autism Spectrum Disorder Level 1, given to him as a 35-year-old adult. Had he been diagnosed earlier, the diagnosis would have been for Asperger's Syndrome.

This kind of disorder/dysfunction often doesn't present itself until adolescence begins. Isaac's sensitivities were plain at that time, but they didn't become problematic until he started trying to sync up with the patterns and rhythms of people outside his family and home. Isaac's home life was perfect for his wiring, his childhood carefully chosen and prepared for and nurtured by his parents and scores of other lines of awareness. He was rooted in unified awareness, very literally in the forests and fields. This background is one of the most important factors in his return to unified awareness today.

Isaac here, jumping back into my own voice again for a sec. I'm on a flight home to Chicago, Abe and me. My parents have been staying at our place the last couple days. We'll see them when we land, and we've got tickets for tonight to see the touring Broadway production of Peter Pan together. The timing and coordination of all this is fucking beautiful. I'm too far developed here to be surprised; I am far enough developed here to be admiringly grateful for it all, and eagerly confident to step forward into each moment here as it unfolds. Can't wait to see you, Mom and Dad!!!

Isaac's learning how to ride this current with increasing ease. :) He's getting better at learning to get better. He’s finding it a pleasure β€” it's a pleasure from our end, too.

Anyway, at least half of Isaac's purpose here on earth is just to be an illustrative example for you. He's a case study, if you will, of the importance of allowing one's conscious awareness to extend to all the places it naturally goes. Isaac's particular makeup makes him naturally attuned to software and business systems, and for him it's second-nature to move his mind into those systems to help them function. He recently found the term "software chiropractor" (it happened halfway through 20240310), and the term is incredibly apropos.

Your conscious awareness is different than his. Maybe you have a green thumb, maybe you just always know how to soothe a kid (or an adult, for that matter), maybe you're a savant in the kitchen, maybe you love getting lost in data, maybe you can feel the car you're driving so closely that you are the car. In what spaces do you lose track of time, and come back feeling better than when you started?

Everyone's conscious awareness feels an almost magnetic draw to expand in certain directions, toward and into things or people or groups or whatever. It's whatever you daydream about. It's whatever's second-nature to you.

We put to you that it is not actually second-nature. It is first-nature. If you are uncomfortable in your life, it is because you are operating in a second nature, not your first.

And beloved, that is so okay. It's important.

We are all collectively and collaboratively playing a universal game of problem-solving. We have all very deliberately maneuvered ourselves into the exact world we're experiencing right now, and that includes all of the ways in which y'all are uncomfortable and in pain. It's a sacrifice that your individual higher self (your soul, if you will) made to be a part of what happens next.

What happens next is that we get the fuck out of this mess. We do that by shifting into first-nature, starting from right fucking here.

You don't have to leave anything, you don't have to quit or change or abandon or anything. You might eventually, but nothing changes at first. You still get to be you. You start from where you are. The next step is the easiest thing in the world. It is to enable your first nature to address the context before you.

Your burnout in your dead-end job is exactly where you begin.

Take the sense of wonder that you see when you look at the stars.

Find the stars in what your job asks of you. Find the constellations. See what you love most easily in what is right in front of you. It's there. It is perfectly positioned. Take your daydreams, the things that come most easily to you, the things that come even before thought, and ask them, "where are you in where I am right now?" They'll show up β€” metaphorically at first, and then increasingly directly. And as that transition occurs, from concept to concrete, you'll be playing to your first-nature strengths. It's going to feel so, so, so much better than how it feels right now. You can't wait. We can say that because we've been in touch with your higher self the whole time β€” the part of your conscious awareness that you were born with, that you remember from childhood, that you separated from for a time (again, just to get yourself into this very specific pickle), the part of you that knows how to handle all of this with great ease.

It is time to shift. :)

The scene before us is ideal for learning a very specific skill through practical application. That's what we're all here for: to learn why this thing is important, to feel why it's important, so that when we do learn it the knowledge will run so deep that it can never be escaped. This is how the world changes.

You're safe, beloved, you're so safe. There is no danger here. We're sorry for the pain, truly. We feel every second of it with you. Profoundly.

Thank you. The sacrifice you made to get to this point cannot be overstated. We honor it, and you.

And, not so long from now, you're going to look back at this moment with sheer joy at how worth it it all was.

:)

Thank you for being here.

We can't wait to see what's next.

And, incidentally, neither can you. ;)

This is a good place to go next: a-relief-strategy.com

Also, I asked Claude to take the stage and address you, the reader, as a followup to this piece. You can read its thoughts here. :)

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