Step Two Hundred and Twenty

Step 220. I Will Use Restraint Today So That Greatness May Grow Within Me.
Use restraint regarding those faculties that you recognize to be harmful or debilitating to the reclamation of Knowledge. Hold yourself back intentionally so that Knowledge may grow within you. This is no limitation that you place upon yourself. Instead, it is the meaningful use of your mind and strength to cultivate an awareness of the Greater Power within you and to allow it to emerge, to guide and to direct you.

In today’s lesson, as in lessons past, you are learning to recognize the source of Knowledge and the vehicle of Knowledge and not to confuse the two. Learn restraint today so that Knowledge may grow within you. Do not think that restraint merely refers to past behavior where you limited what was genuine within yourself. No, your focus today is to learn the form of intentional restraint that represents an expression of your power and self-discipline. Your power and self-discipline must now be exercised to become strong, for your mind and body are vehicles of Knowledge, and as vehicles, they must be developed and strengthened.

In your deeper practices today, as in your hourly practices, restrain those forms of thinking and behavior that betray your Knowledge so that you may enter Knowledge in stillness and in peace. With this restraint, freedom will be discovered, for freedom is found beyond this world and is brought into this world, for freedom is the gift of Knowledge.

Practice 220:
Two 30-minute practice periods. Hourly practice.

Here you will find the entire book free for download

Here you will find pointers for getting started if this is your first encounter with this practice: Taking the Steps to Knowledge.

November 23, 2013 Round One: I will write down what came to mind when doing this Step, but I fully accept that I may not have understood and will wish to change what I write later. However, while reflecting on restraint what came to mind was the way I restrain myself both in the way I think of myself and in the way I think others think of me.

I am happy to report that the way I think of myself is taking on a new qualitative aspect since I am slowly awakening to the fact that I am not the person that is my physical body, my individual self with its physical and mental capacities, but a being that is not separate from God and in a relationship with God. And I am in this world through the grace of God, not through my own set of beliefs and preferences. I am here to serve and just the very awareness of this takes the pressure off for me, for I cannot fail. If I am aware of my service, rather than feeling that my life is all about me, it stands to reason that my service will be of value no matter what capacity it reveals itself in, because it will come from my deeper mind, the place where Knowledge resides.

Dealing with other people is a little harder. And restraint here takes two forms – I do not want to restrain myself from sharing with others due to fear of how they might react or what they might think of me but I need to show restraint and discretion in how much and what I share with people who may be in a different phase of their evolution.

This is all rather difficult to put into words. In a nutshell though – I feel less restraint in my experience of myself because berating and belittling myself is harmful and debilitating to the reclamation of Knowledge, and I feel more restraint and self-discipline in my relationships with others. Yes, I understand how this restraint will allow Knowledge to develop and become strengthened in me.

Angel, another Steps students, said in response to this Step, “If I were to accept this then I must battle the ego and it salivating over my greatness with arrogance.”

I responded with: 

How can I embrace my greatness without inflating my ego beyond all proportions and feeling way too arrogant? But this is the precise point the Step is making I think - that to embrace our greatness we need to step beyond the ego, for our greatness has nothing to do with us personally, it has only to do with our Source. And if we do not want to embrace our Greatness, we do not want to accept that we have been sent here from our Ancient Home, from our Source, to serve the world. We cannot serve the world if we cannot accept our greatness. So I restrain my individuality, my ego, my separated self, and embrace the greatness that is inherent in me from my Source, that is part of the Oneness.

March 12, 2015 Round Two: I think I was rather verbose the first time, but so be it. I will leave what I wrote as is, although this time I have a different perspective on this Step and am not sure what I wrote the first time really applies to it.

This time I see it as following directly on from a previous step about holding Knowledge within until it is strong enough to be expressed without causing detriment. It is also in line with the step right before this one about curbing ambition. This is what it means by restraint. I should restrain myself from going out and making a loud noise about Knowledge in the world before I really know what I am talking about. I need to use discretion and discernment. And again, it is not about me, the greatness refers to Knowledge and allowing Knowledge to grow, develop and blossom within before taking on the responsibility of being a vehicle for Knowledge in the world.

“...your focus today is to learn the form of intentional restraint that represents an expression of your power and self-discipline.”

And I understand this to be an exercise in humility. I do not make a loud noise about myself in the world. I do not expect recognition or fame, this is not how greatness is manifested.


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