A path can take you places if you walk on it. Somebody who has gotten to an interesting place can show her path to others so that they can get there more easily. Following somebody else's path can bring new and surprising experiences.

However, people are different. And they get to be more and more different the more freedom they attain. They will respond differently to the same directions, they have different priorities, different intentions.

We can lay out processing programs as paths that people can follow. That can provide the valuable service of making it simple and systematic to get to a higher level of awareness.

It must not be forgotten, however, that it is always the person herself who is creating her gain. All that processing can do is to encourage and invite her to change. Nothing is actually being done TO her.

A prepared road map is only valid to the degree that it inspires each individual to make her own progress towards states that are more desirable to her.

There is no right place to get to, and there are no right steps that one must follow. We can't even say that everybody has to get to any other state than what they are already in. It is totally up to the individual. She is already creating her reality in a fashion that is at some level perfect for her. We are not going to judge and say that anybody is living their lives wrong.

However, many people desire some kind of improvement in their lives. They can see that things can be better, they could be more able, more aware, more successful, more happy, more rich, or whatever. Most likely they are already going through experiences in life that take them in the direction of what they want. But possibly they might need some assistance.

Everybody inherently have different paths to follow. We can not make one very specific and detailed series of steps that all are supposed to do exactly like that. Well, we could, but it would not be respecting the integrity of the people we are dealing with.

The only way of making a road map that can work for many people is to make it general enough that anybody can insert their own situations and interests in it, but precise enough so that we address the actual situations and interests.

Let's say you give me instructions for getting from your house to the nearest gas station: "Go down the stairs, get into the white car, drive 2 miles north, turn right opposite of Apple Drive, park on the left side of the street". Maybe that is the way you do it, and those instructions work for you. But maybe I come from a totally different place, and if I tried following your instructions I would get lost. The white car and the Apple Drive wouldn't be there.

Supposing we lived in the same city, it would work much better if you gave me a street map and you circled a gas station on it, and you helped me find out where I am starting from, and what direction I would go based on that.

Same thing with personal development. We are not all starting from the same street, we don't all want to go to the gas station, and we have different styles of driving.

An effective processing program is a road map. More than that, it is a universal travel guide that will apply just about anywhere. It doesn't tell you exactly what to do, it doesn't assume that everybody starts in the same place. It tells you what kind of places there might be to see in your area, and how you might go about experiencing them.

Paths are generally not linear in this universe. There are no purely straight lines. It can sometimes be useful to simplify things and pretend that we have a linear program one can do one step at a time. However it only works as long as people are willing to change themselves somewhat in order to fit into the program. The drawbacks of a simple, linear program might be outweighed by the advantages of having a more flexible game that everybody can agree on.


- Write down some paths you have followed in your life. Were they laid out in advance or was the path discovered along the way?

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