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Chief Obstacles chosen by incarnating souls - Michael Teachings

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Chief Obstacles chosen by incarnating souls - Michael Teachings. This document is chapter 23 from the following book, and each obstacle is examined in detail in chapter 24 in Shepherd Hoodwin - Journey of Your Soul ( Source: https://www.amazon.com/Journey-Your-Soul-Explores-Teachings-ebook/dp/B008IS1ZUU ).
At the end of that chapter, Mr. Hoodwin recommends the following book:
"Transforming Your Dragons: Turning Personality Fear Patterns into Personal Power" by Jose Stevens is an excellent book devoted entirely to obstacles ( https://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/1879181177/ref=sr_1_1_olp?ie=UTF8&qid=1521922632 ).

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Chief Obstacles chosen by incarnating souls - Michael Teachings

  1. 1. 1 Chief Obstacles chosen by incarnating souls Source: Shepherd Hoodwin - Journey of Your Soul, Ch. 23.: Obstacles Our chief obstacle (or chief feature) is our primary Achilles’ heel or stumbling block, the focus of our fears and illusions. Since it is our dominant blind spot, it can be hard to recognize. Even if we acknowledge it in theory, it can be difficult to recognize in action. (We no doubt can see other people’s obstacles plain as day!)
  2. 2. 2 An obstacle can be strong or mild. It may not be a major focus during a particular lifetime, or our work on it may have reduced it so that its influence is minor. On the other hand, an extreme manifestation of an obstacle can contribute to mental illness or resemble it. An example of extreme impatience is road rage. Less extreme is always being in a hurry or interrupting others. With subdued impatience, a person may often feel a bit wound up but usually have the good manners not to show it. An obstacle can also be blatant or subtle. Let’s say that two people have self- destruction in equal measure. With someone drinking herself to death, the self- destruction is obvious. With someone dying of cancer, the link between the obstacle and the disease may not be transparent. (Cancer and other diseases do not necessarily result from obstacles.) In both cases, there is a fear of loss of control. In the second person, that may look like self-discipline, but because it’s based on fear, it’s not a healthy kind. As with the other overleaves, we can slide across the axis, or to any of the other obstacles from the neutral position, which is stubbornness. We can also hold secondary and tertiary obstacles, which are simultaneous rather than alternating. In fact, since we all have at least a bit of each obstacle, they could be ranked from one to seven, although essence usually focuses on the chief obstacle, which is plenty to deal with. According to Michael’s People,1 the chief feature (obstacle) distorts the goal, whereas the secondary distorts the attitude and is more at work in personal relationships. The tertiary, if any, distorts the mode. According to my channeling, goal is the innermost overleaf, so it is blocked first by the obstacles; attitude comes next, and mode follows. It is a judgment call on Michael’s part how many obstacles are important enough to dictate on a chart. I am normally just given a chief obstacle. The obstacles and the negative poles of the role and other overleaves are activated by fear. Both the positive and negative poles of the obstacles are fear-
  3. 3. 3 based; the positive poles are merely the lesser of two evils. Some of them sound worthwhile, such as humility, selflessness, and determination, but as manifestations of obstacles, they are false, although they masquerade as the real thing. Obstacles are meant to be defenses, but ironically they make matters worse because they generate inappropriate responses, and then it seems that more fear is warranted when these responses don’t work. For example, stubbornness is a fear of change. When a person resists change, she make things worse by creating conflict, making it appear that even more fear is warranted, which can cause her to further dig in her heels. Her inappropriate responses build on themselves, increasing the hold of the false personality and maya. False personality is made up of the obstacles and the negative poles of the other overleaves. Maya means illusion, and it relates to essence, particularly the negative pole of the role. Fear’s purpose in the scheme of things is to alert us when there is a genuine threat to our physical safety so that we take the necessary steps to ensure our protection. Fear springs largely from the body’s survival urge, and the body’s ultimate fear is of death. >>>>Our chief obstacle is an ego defense against what we falsely and habitually perceive as the greatest threat to our survival. In arrogance, one believes, “If others criticize me, I will die.” In self-deprecation, one believes, “If I cannot improve myself and become adequate somehow, I will die.” In impatience, one believes, “If I don’t beat the race against time, I will miss out and die.” In martyrdom, one believes, “If I don’t become worthy and prove my worth, I will die.” In self-destruction, one believes, “If I lose control, I will die.” In greed, one believes, “If I don’t get enough, I will die.” And in stubbornness, one believes, “If things change, I will die.” These beliefs, although illusions, can be self- fulfilling prophecies. <<<<
  4. 4. 4 With self-destruction, a person can be so afraid of dying through losing control that he holds his feelings in and implodes. Or the pressure may build up to the point at which he has a meltdown, exploding uncontrollably and creating the loss of control he had been dreading. In greed, a person can die, or at least suffer, from having too much: too much food can lead to obesity and too many possessions can become a heavy responsibility or lead to bankruptcy. The arrogance that is supposed to protect a person from the barbs of others can make him a target for them: acting superior to others can cause them to want to put him in his place; criticizing others can make them want to criticize him. Self-deprecation’s fear of inadequacy can lead to actual inadequacy and failure from a person trying too hard and getting in his own way, or from not bothering to make an effort at all. An impatient person may miss out by trying to pack in too much and then being late. The martyr becomes a victim of his self-inflicted pain. And a stubborn person’s resistance to change can cause changes to be negative that would not have been otherwise. Our essence settles on a chief obstacle at the beginning of adulthood, however a culture defines that. It used to be around the age of eighteen in ours, but it has been happening a little earlier during recent decades. It coincides with the third internal monad. Before that, we might play with various obstacles, or even all of them, especially during adolescence. Essence may settle on a secondary obstacle a year or two later. The obstacles aren’t manufactured out of nothing. They are made up of previously latent fears from past lives or earlier in the present lifetime. Concentrating them into a chief obstacle makes it easier for us to recognize and work on them. Overcoming these particular fears becomes the focus of our growth, usually for an entire lifetime or more.
  5. 5. 5 The cardinal obstacles artificially expand the self, while the ordinal ones artificially contract it. Each pair of obstacles, like the other overleaves, is composed of opposites. The inspiration-axis obstacles are arrogance, which perceives self in an inflated way, and self-deprecation, which perceives self in a deflated way. The expression-axis obstacles are greed, which attempts to add to the self, and self-destruction, which attempts to subtract from it. The action-axis obstacles are impatience, which audaciously tries to act on the environment, and martyrdom, which experiences the environment as acting on itself. The assimilation-axis obstacle is stubbornness; it is neutral and not a member of a pair. Our psychological shadow, or dark side, includes our obstacles and the negative poles of our role and overleaves. However, it goes beyond them and is unique. Our shadow can also include positive traits we have but deny. Michael’s main tool for reducing our obstacles is simply to “photograph” them, noticing when they are influencing us. If we do that, we can begin to discern what they feel like and anticipate when they are likely to be activated. We can then take steps to avoid them. Regression into past lives or early childhood can be another useful tool for working with obstacles. For example, someone in arrogance might unconsciously be reacting to a past life in which the judgments of others were literally fatal to him. Regressing to that lifetime can help him realize on a gut level that he is not at risk in his present situation. Affirmations are also useful. The following affirmation can help someone in arrogance: “It is all right if others judge and criticize me; I love and accept myself.” Welcoming what was feared and recognizing its valuable lessons reduce its power over us. With arrogance, we can realize that many people are judgmental,
  6. 6. 6 and it is impossible to avoid the judgments of others all the time. However, although we do not need to take them personally, we can learn from them. We can explore what is valid in the criticism we receive and use it to grow into happier people. With work, we can eliminate our chief obstacle or demote it to a secondary, in which case an obstacle that was more latent might come into the spotlight and become the primary one, giving us an opportunity to grow further. Each obstacle is examined in detail in Chapter 24 of Shepherd Hoodwin - Journey of Your Soul. At the end of that chapter, Mr. Hoodwin recommends the following book: "Transforming Your Dragons: Turning Personality Fear Patterns into Personal Power" by Jose Stevens is an excellent book devoted entirely to obstacles.