Republished © Stuart Wilde – Note from CJWild: This is a Stuart Wilde article so the views expressed in the text are not necessarily my own.
Question and answer sessions Part 1
Changing Yourself and Your Past
Q: If there was one thing you could change about yourself, what would it be?
A: I presume this question doesn’t mean physically, because honestly I’d rather look like Tom Cruise than Stuart Wilde. But in relation to myself and my life, I really wouldn’t change that much because, the way it is, is the way it is. I feel that each of us has to accept the way we find ourselves. I don’t think we ever really stray very far from our destiny. I follow my destiny and feel fairly happy with it.
Q: If you could go back and change one thing from your past, what would it be?
A: What is past is past, and to hanker to change things is a bit of a worthless exercise. I feel that I have followed my path strongly in this lifetime. Although I made some mistakes, when I look back at them years later, they weren’t really mistakes. I could have chosen A or I could have chosen B, and I made my choice and that was it. So I don’t think there are a lot of things I would change.
I left Africa when I was ten and went to an English boarding school, and I always considered that a great misfortune. Perhaps I could have stayed in Africa till I was 18 or so, but then my destiny may have been very different.
Perhaps I could have been more disciplined in my 20s, when I did a lot of drinking and drugs and probably knocked 10 or 20 years off my life. But then again, I had a lot of visions, opened up my consciousness, and came upon a spiritual path as a result of going through those totally crazy years. So I don’t think I’d change anything.
Guilt, Shame and Failure
Q: In step seven of your book and audio series 33 Steps, you talk about guilt as a great human weakness. I was brought up in a family where I was made to feel guilty for everything, and find it difficult to transcend this deep-seated emotion. How would you suggest I banish guilt from my life — not just on an intellectual level, but on a deep emotional level?
A: I think guilt and shame are two of the hardest emotions to go beyond because they usually come from the family of origin, and therefore from one’s upbringing. Even though they are emotions that come from an opinion, the opinions are entrenched very deeply.
If someone was shamed as a child, you can’t just say to the person, “Let go of the shame”, because the shame is a profound part of who they are. So with shame and guilt, I think you need the assistance of a qualified counselor who can talk you through your inner-child experience. You can then begin to see how you took on those experiences in childhood, and that it was part of your evolution and how you dealt with growing up.
I believe the higher self has a vision of what it’s going to be up to each lifetime. You accepted your family and their weaknesses. When they put guilt and shame upon you, they were usually expressing their own insecurity. Even though they may have been bastards, they were bastards because they were taught weakness by somebody else. It’s quite a heroic thing for you to break the chain so that this isn’t handed down to your children.
Q: I try so hard to be a success in life, but I seem to attract more failure than success. When I am successful, I can’t accept it; and when I fail, I beat myself up about it.
A: One of my favourite quotes was written by me: “Life: never take it personally.” If you can get to a point where you don’t take it personally, you are recognising that you are a spirit, a golden light inside a funny little physical body. And inside the physical body is a funny little personality that really hasn’t got a clue, and a funny little ego that needs nurturing.
That’s what we are, just funny little people playing a game inside this thing called life. So, when you look at the contrast of the ego and the spirit, you can see that it is only a matter of controlling your personality, and the first point of your control is deciding that you are not going to be the personality.
In other words, are you that person? Are you your emotions? Are you your anguish? Are you your pain? Are you your success, your failure?
You’re not. And if you think you are, I feel sorry for you. You have a long, hard, painful journey ahead. You are a divine spirit, don’t forget that.
Detaching from Acceptance
Q: In your series “Affirmations”, you talk about learning to detach from acceptance. I find I’m constantly searching for acceptance from others. I realise this is probably because I don’t accept myself. Have you any suggestions on how I can cultivate more self-acceptance and stop putting myself down so much?
A: The need for acceptance from others is a natural human tendency. However, the basis of it comes from insecurity It stems from the way we interacted with our family members, siblings, and friends as a young person.
As we grow up through our teenage years, we find the need to join the society of our friends, and – in order to join the society and feel solid as a personality — we program ourselves into needing people’s acceptance. Accepting yourself is an act of spiritual empowerment because it allows you to understand that you didn’t come here to be perfect. You can absolve yourself of your deficiencies and promise to try harder in the future, and you can accept your successes and your strengths.
In that humility and spirituality, you understand that you have a perfection that exists in the light of God; you are potentially an angel inside a physical body. Security comes from feeling connected to all things. It is beyond the intellect, the personality, and the mind. It’s an inner sense of knowing, which only comes once you’ve managed to control the mind.
So, once you see yourself from an infinite perspective and don’t need to win people’s acceptance, you can be kinder and more gentle toward yourself. You can understand that you’re in a state of imperfection — that you’re here on this Earth plane to learn from it, and to gradually improve, strengthen, and return back to the light where you and I and all of us belong.
Q: In “Silent Power” you write, “Trying to win people over and hoping the world will accept you for your wonderfulness is futile and weak.” I find I have to do this every day in the business world. I work in advertising and find that my career is all about trying to impress others. It certainly becomes tiresome, but how can I avoid it?
A: Trying to win people over in business – where you’re trying to sell them a story, a commercial idea, or a product – is completely different from trying to win acceptance by accommodating people in your private life. Naturally, if you’re working in advertising, you have to make the right noises and rub people’s egos the right way in order to be successful.
However, whether in business or in your private life, the secret is to impose firm boundaries. It’s a matter of saying: “When you do this, I will react like that”, or “This kind of action is not acceptable to me”. You have to let people know what you will accept and what you won’t accept without any rancour. With good boundaries, you don’t need to win people over, and you can always keep people from violating your space. You can have an individual identity and an individual set of rules, and as long as you can explain this to people equitably and kindly, they can either abide by the rules or they can walk away. Or, alternatively, you can walk away.