The Third Cup: You Can Change Your Inner World
by Aleya Dao
An Excerpt from Seven Cups of Consciousness
Your life may be filled with beautiful or challenging relationships. Your finances may ebb and flow like the ocean tides. Your body may betray or support you. Whatever your outer world may be, you are the one creating your life. What you focus on is what you create. You can change your inner world.
This is not a new concept. The movie The Secret, and many ancient teachings before it, has taught that your internal reality creates your outer world. But here’s the real secret: you shift your outer life by shifting your inner energies, using your Higher Self. If you feel deep support flowing inside you, your outer world will begin reflecting to you greater degrees of support. Simply put, and it bears repeating, changing your inner life will change your outer life.
If the message coming from within is that you are not enough, you will eventually create a situation in which you will not have enough in your outer world. Your bank account may reflect this internal feeling of lack. Your health may fail. You may not have supportive relationships. The longer you hold a particular energy, emotion, belief system, or behavior, the more likely it is to be reflected in your outer life.
The good news is that any impoverished part of your life gives you important information that you can act on. You can use your outer life to find out what is going on energetically. With that information, you can change yourself, your body, and your Team.
The first step to change your inner world requires awareness. Every time you take a breath, you have the opportunity to do an inner check-in. How are you feeling inside right now? Calm, anxious, tired, relaxed? Taking even ten seconds to do a check-in cultivates greater awareness.
But here’s the catch. If you are not conscious of something, you cannot change it. The more aware you are, the more you can change. At first this might be a little overwhelming. Perhaps you have already cultivated a certain level of inner awareness but are not sure how to shift your challenges and uncomfortable feelings. Either way, holding awareness is step number one.
Think of your emotions, behaviors, and belief systems simply as compass settings. They are indicators you can use to adjust your direction and what you create for yourself. They are clues to your inner energy patterns. Your increased awareness of your emotions and behaviors gives you the opportunity to change your compass heading.
Step number two speaks to the energy of attachment and desire. What are you attached to, and what do you desire? Are you focused on other people’s lives more than on your own? For example, do you want other people to be happy, safe, or supported? Do you want them to be honest and act with integrity and respect?
When you hold your focus on others, you are giving away precious energy. When you focus on yourself, you can shift your internal reality and model that to others.
Perhaps this sounds selfish to you. When I first came across this concept, it struck me this way too, so I sat down in meditation and asked the Ascended Masters, “Is it selfish to be attached only to my own internal reality?” They responded: “That is the only way you can truly help another. If you hold all your attachment on yourself and desire only your own internal reality, you have the capacity to use all your energy to shift yourself. As you shift the vibrations inside you into greater states of love, connection, happiness, self-respect, and peace, you are able to model that higher, more coherent way of being to others.
“You no longer need to change or control another person as a way of alleviating your own anxiety. As you pull your attachment/control and desire off others, you will also release energetic responsibility for other people’s lives. The people in your life will in turn move into greater states of personal responsibility and inner empowerment. The more personal responsibility an individual holds, the more empowered he or she becomes.
“As you hold attachment and desire just for yourself, you will no longer project onto others what you think they need. Holding attachment and desire for your internal reality is a more loving way of being. It is not selfish at all. You will be of greater service when you hold this stance.”
After this meditative conversation, I also realized how holding attachment and desire for another person’s reality can affect integrity and boundaries. If I am attached to another person’s behavior, I automatically take responsibility for something that is not mine. I have just crossed someone’s boundary and stolen. My new stance quickly became, “Hands to myself; no stealing; model right energy.”
Give yourself permission to be attached to your own feelings and internal reality and no one else’s. As you hold this stance, coupled with greater inner awareness, you can dive into the next layer of the Third Cup. Drum roll, please! Turn up your courage dial, take a deep breath, and get ready to swallow the…personal responsibility pill.
When you take responsibility for your internal reality, reactions, and emotions, you move into the seat of power. You no longer blame people for how you feel. You are no longer a victim or a victimizer. Everything that happens is an opportunity for you to grow (that one is a little sip from the Fourth Cup). As you hold responsibility for your internal reality, emotions, and behavior, you gain control of your life. You can alter your course as you choose.
Inner awareness + inner attachment + personal responsibility + choice = change
As you hold all four of these components inside yourself, you will be able to effect major change in your life. Below I’ve listed the steps to help you embody all the layers of the Third Cup:
1. Increase awareness of your feelings and how they reflect into your outer world.
2. Hold all your attachment and desire on yourself for your own internal reality.
3. Take responsibility for your own feelings.
4. Choose the energy you want to embody, and invite your Higher Self to get on it.
As you work through these layers, be gentle with yourself. Every time you notice a less-than-desirable feeling, crank up that courage dial and hold awareness around the emotion. Just acknowledge it. “I am feeling ______.” Sit in the energy for a moment, even if it is uncomfortable. Just observe it. Your mere awareness will begin to shift the energy. As you sit in it, observe it as if it were a wave of energy or an energetic gust of wind moving through you. Emotions are indicators. Use them to point yourself in your intended direction.
Invite your Higher Self to retrieve all your attachment and desire for other people’s realities and to be attached only to your own internal reality. Hold and use your energy on yourself.
Next comes the personal responsibility moment. Acknowledge that you have created this situation because of some energy you are connecting with internally. Use your free will and choice to change.
The Fourth Cup will take you deeper into the practice of shifting uncomfortable feelings and challenges. For now, practice cultivating awareness, inner attachment, personal responsibility, and making the choice to change.
Aleya Dao is the author of Seven Cups of Consciousness. She opened the first alternative health-care clinic in Telluride, CO, and has built an international healing practice with her online subscribers and students. Visit her online at aleyadao.com.
Excerpted from the book Seven Cups of Consciousness ©2015 by Aleya Dao. Printed with permission of New World Library.