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Understanding Polarity: Shifting How We View the World

by Deb Schnitta

To begin it is important to consider what exactly is polarity? Polarity in a spiritual context is the representation of areas of consciousness that appear to be the opposite from one another. In effect, they are each two components of the same body of consciousness, each with a different focus. Simple examples of polarity include good and bad, right and wrong, light and dark. In each example, it is fairly easy for the mind to identify where the polarity lies and which side of the equation you most see yourself.

Polarity is present in every disagreement, in any area of life where there is less than harmony. In extreme forms of polarity there is war, in the subtle pervasive expressions of polarity there are situations of push and resistance.

Throughout the history of spiritual evolution the presence of polarity has been significant and continues to be so today. Often individuals desire to improve themselves based on a certain life experience that they view as less than favorable. The commitment (silent or aloud) to not be like a certain individual often starts the cycle of exploration into where this person does want to exist along the continuum of polarity.

The trick is to not accentuate the roles of polarity while making your internal commitments. Accentuating the polarity actually adds to the polarity of any given situation. The dilemma with this approach is that adding to polarity increases the chances that you will continue to defend your position in the polarity and the situation will not change. 

Consider this example:

Sharon is in a relationship that began as one of love and ideals. Shortly after they each committed to one another, the romanticized elements fell away and revealed what her friends called ‘opposites attract.’ She and her boyfriend are opposite on many personal views, from politics to money, to whether or not she would work if they have children. Because they are so opposite, their discussions together and with friends and family often find them on opposite sides of the fence. Sharon says that it feels more like they are arguing than discussing. She frequently feels as if her boyfriend simply pushes back at her, no matter what she says, and feels like she can never win. Most often she describes feeling badly about herself in relation to these exchanges.

The polar aspects of consciousness at play in this example are fairly obvious. But what may be more elusive is the way that polarity keeps the dynamic in place. If Sharon did not feel badly about herself, would it continue? Probably not. Does Sharon know how she ends up feeling badly in these exchanges? (What actually transpires whereby she internalizes something is wrong.) She says she does not, just that it is how each exchange ends and that she hates how she feels. She does report that it is familiar, that it has been present in every significant relationship in her life, her parents, one brother, a boss, even her academic adviser in college.

With this much prevalence in her life, the significance of the polarity and pattern is great. This aspect of polarity, the consciousness of not feeling good about herself, keeps her engaged with the world from one primary viewpoint, the orientation that no matter what she does, she can’t win. In order to keep this polarity in place, she must have worthy playmates that are willing to fill their roles, to reinforce she is less than and not worthy. Therefore, she recreates the pattern, over and over again, using different people that all fill the same role.

Shifting the polarity is much more effective than trying new strategies to manage the situation. In the latter, nothing changes and much energy is spent trying to minimize the impact of unpleasant situations. To shift the polarity requires a commitment that things can be different. On the surface this sounds easy, since often the exploration of polarity has begun because there is unhappiness with a current situation. However, letting go of habituated patterns takes some concentrated effort as well as understanding of the pattern itself.

To shift the polarity requires the presence of neutrality. To no longer be hooked by the old patterns opens space for new awareness and choices to emerge. Shifting the polarity fosters this faster than anything else. As you get to know this aspect of consciousness that is you, the opportunity to make conscious choice arises. In this way the choices you make do not accentuate the polarity, but rather come from expansion and neutrality.

In the example of Sharon, the first step in shifting the polarity that is present would be to open her heart and hear what is transpiring. Is her boyfriend arguing or is he simply expressing a different view? Can she receive what he is expressing, whether or not she agrees with him? To do this requires a commitment to witness objectively what is actually occurring.

No matter how disappointed Sharon is with the situation, if she is not open to things being different, then they will stay the same. The energetic dynamics of polarity keep the push and pull of the exchanges in place. To have awareness of one component of the consciousness opens the possibility for the momentum of the (often) unconscious push and pull to stop. Even a momentary pause in the rhythm provides the opening for the entire patterns of reactivity both conscious and unconscious to transform. The content or place of transformation that occurs is often seen by the mind as the payoff or the attraction to being right. These very elements keep the pattern in place no matter how strongly the desire for something to be different might be.

To help the process of transformation of any area of polarity, consider this brief exercise. Start off by writing down your 'side' of the equation. This would be your views and experience. You will gain the greatest insights into what within you keeps this pattern in play if you complete this step with as many 'I' statements as possible. By remaining focused on what you perceive, what you experience, you gain understanding of yourself more fully.

For the second step, write down what you hear as the facts of the other side of the equation. This would be the content of what has been shared or transpired. As you write them down, notice any reactions in your physical body. Here the clues for what in the content triggers you begin to emerge. The physical cues may be subtle, a small tightening in your stomach or solar plexus area, holding your breath.

As you focus on the area of your physical body that moves into reaction in this way, you are connecting with the consciousness of polarity within your system. A small place of reaction that holds much wisdom has just been illuminated.

For the final step, continuing to sit in quiet contemplation, ask the constriction in your body to tell you what is needed. Be willing to wait patiently for a response. Often the mind fills the void of silence by replaying the story, or trying to ‘understand’ what is transpiring. When the consciousness of the body speaks, it is often in short non-charged sentences. Its wisdom speaks so clearly that the few words that illustrate the consciousness often feel like a deep sense of connection within the body, or a moment of illumination far beyond what the mind could have created on its own.

As these concepts emerge, take some time to be with them. Often writing about what emerges assists the mind to understand what is playing out in deeper ways. This is a wonderful tool of gaining awareness, and deepens the connection to the inner place of truth and higher knowing.

As the content becomes known in this way, the process of discovery often continues in a deeper fashion, opening the door for the transformation of the content as well as the dynamic that keeps the polarity in play. As you sit with the wisdom of your body, you might hear or perceive a simple phrase such as, “I just want to be understood.” This need is often what fuels the largest areas of polarity in the situation. It also often expresses itself in other areas of your life.

Here in the moment of discovery, you have the gift of consciousness that is asking for attention. You are now sitting with the awareness of what within you keeps the presence of polarity, the push and the pull of consciousness in place.


Deb Schnitta, RN is a leading pioneer in healing and consciousness and the originator of Cellular Expansion and Healing TM (CE) a revolutionary energy work that supports the resolution of constrictions and illness at the level of the cells. CE affects the consciousness stored within the cells and provides connection to Soul and the Divine.
An author of many books and Meditation CD Energy Programs for living a life connected consciously to Soul and Spirit, Deb supports individuals seeking healing, spiritual development and enlightenment. She has co-founded Vanati: A Center for Energy Medicine and Consciousness with her partner, Pauline Dishler M.Ed. Information about their revolutionary approach to healing, free distance healing, and dynamic Meditation Energy Programs can be found at  www.vanati.com.


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