The Hidden Order and the Great Discovery Fuelling Your Growth and Empowerment

DR JOHN DEMARTINI   -   Updated 1 month ago

Dr John Demartini explains why recognizing that both support and challenge occur simultaneously frees you to see the hidden order in the apparent chaos. This practice can fuel the growth, empowerment and mastery you would love to achieve in your life.

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DR JOHN DEMARTINI - Updated 1 month ago

From the age of 18, I’ve had a deep interest in discovering the hidden order in life’s apparent chaos. Since then, I have actively studied every aspect of philosophy, neurology, psychology, thermodynamics, physics and other areas that I can find to assist me in this pursuit.

Every problem you’ll ever face in any of the seven primary areas of your life (Spiritual, Mental, Vocational, Financial, Familial, Social, Physical) stems from one thing: MISSING INFORMATION.

Let me take a step back and explain what I mean.

Let’s say that you are highly infatuated with someone. You are therefore conscious of their upsides and momentarily unconscious of their downsides, not to mention impulsively attracted to them and enamored with them so much that they occupy space and time in your mind.

You may not know that to the degree that you’re infatuated with them and PHILIC (meaning a liking or attracted towards them), you’re simultaneously PHOBIC (meaning an extreme aversion) t
From the age of 18, I’ve had a deep interest in discovering the hidden order in life’s apparent chaos. Since then, I have actively studied every aspect of philosophy, neurology, psychology, thermodynamics, physics and other areas that I can find to assist me in this pursuit.

Every problem you’ll ever face in any of the seven primary areas of your life (Spiritual, Mental, Vocational, Financial, Familial, Social, Physical) stems from one thing: MISSING INFORMATION.

Let me take a step back and explain what I mean.

Let’s say that you are highly infatuated with someone. You are therefore conscious of their upsides and momentarily unconscious of their downsides, not to mention impulsively attracted to them and enamored with them so much that they occupy space and time in your mind.

You may not know that to the degree that you’re infatuated with them and PHILIC (meaning a liking or attracted towards them), you’re simultaneously PHOBIC (meaning an extreme aversion) to the idea of somebody or something taking them away.

In other words, anything you’re infatuated with, you fear its loss. At the exact moment you have a philia, which is an attraction or impulse towards, you also have a simultaneous phobia, which is a fear of its loss.

One of the greatest primary fears and distresses in life is the perception of loss of that which you seek. So, if you’re mildly attracted, you’ll likely have a mild fear of it being gone. If you’re highly attracted, you’ll likely have a bigger fear.

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The greater the infatuation, the greater the phobia associated with its loss

On the other side of the equation, you’ve also probably met people you just don’t get along with. You’re conscious of their downsides and unconscious of any upsides, which mostly results in an instinct to AVOID them.

Interestingly, to the degree that you resent them or want to avoid them, you also create a disassociated fantasy about what it may be like to get away from them and the relief you’ll likely experience when you escape them.

To put it another way, it will be a grief if they come near you and a relief if they don’t.

You tend to have a reciprocal fantasy to escape what you resent in these instances. So the phobia of being around the individual you resent is associated with the philia, the fantasy of escaping.

In other words, the moment you are philic with something, you’re phobic; and the moment you’re phobic of something, you’re philic. They occur simultaneously in the brain.

If you infatuate with somebody intelligent, you’ll likely resent someone ignorant. If you resent someone ignorant, you’ll likely infatuate with somebody intelligent. The brain has a reciprocal contrast.

Wilhelm Wundt, a German psychologist from the late 1800s who is often referred to as one of the fathers of modern psychology, said there are simultaneous contrasts in the mind. However, most people are subjectively biased in their INTERPRETATION of their reality and see these contrasts SUCCESSIVELY instead of occurring simultaneously. They’re momentarily subjectively biased towards something and infatuated with it and see all the upsides but don’t tend to see the downsides and then the opposite pole seemingly later.

In other words, most people don’t see a SIMULTANEOUS aspect of the philia and the phobia.

Maximum growth 

Your impulses and instincts are autonomic survival strategies to seek prey and to avoid predators. They emerge from the subcortical region of your brain, also known as your animal brain, systems 1, or fast thinking reactive survival brain. Anything you perceive to support your values represents prey, and anything you perceive to challenge your values represents predator.

It is wise to know that both predator and prey simultaneously occur at any one moment.

It’s been shown in eco biology that maximum growth and development of a human being occurs at the border of support and challenge, philia and phobia, prey and predator. This is when the blood, glucose, and oxygen go to the thrival brain also known as systems 2 or slow thinking prefrontal cortex or executive center of your brain.

Imagine that you had nothing but prey or food that was pleasurable to eat, but there was no such thing as a predator. As a result, you may follow an excessive and hedonistic path of gluttony. Eventually, you would likely have symptoms in your body to alert you that you have too much food or pleasure. You would also become even more of a target to a predator if they suddenly emerged due to the sluggish movement and added calories.

You could also have a situation where you had a predator without prey, which would result in emaciation, starvation, and insufficient energy for fitness.

So, nature has an ecosystem with prey and predator, support and challenge, philia and phobia in that when you’re philic towards food, you’re also phobic towards predator eating you. One is a pleasure. One is pain.

As nature so aptly demonstrates, maximum growth and development occur at the border of pleasure and pain, support and challenge, prey and predator, positive and negative.

Heraclitus, the earliest philosopher back in the fifth century BC, talked about the unity of these pairs of opposites.

Anaxagoras, another philosopher even before him, spoke about the pairs of opposites of pleasure and pain and how they’re inseparable. This is not new information but wisdom that has been around for centuries.

Many years ago, when I was in the early stages of my research into trying to find a hidden order in the apparent chaos, I discovered that ‘chaos’ or ‘disorder’ is another aim or name for entropy and that the tendency to go from order to disorder is, according to Claude Shannon, MISSING INFORMATION.

Missing information could be likened to the unconscious mind.

In other words:

  •   When you’re infatuated, you’re unconscious of and missing information about the downside.
  •   When you’re resentful, you’re unconscious of and missing information about the upside.

As a result, you’re ignorant of what the WHOLE is.

Mindfulness

You’re not fully conscious or mindful but instead mindLESS and ignorant since you’re missing information on the whole.

This missing information is entropy, which often results in apparent disorder and chaos. Entropy measures the amount of information missing.

However, when you are simultaneously aware and mindful of both sides - the predator and the prey, the pain and the pleasure, the negative and the positive – you’ll be less likely to be fooled by ignorance and be more able to be present and maximize your potential.

For this reason, maximum growth and potential occur at the border of these two complementary polar events.

So, wisdom is knowing how to wake up in your mind the questions that make you aware of the part you normally ignore or are unconscious of.

As I often say in my signature two-day program, the Breakthrough Experience, the quality of your life is based on the quality of your questions. And quality questions make you conscious of the unconscious and missing information.

I also go into great detail about the brain, two parts in particular:

  • You have a lower subcortical, AMYGDALA portion of your telencephalon, and that part of your brain is involved in animalistic seeking and avoiding. Also known as systems 1, fast-thinking animal brain. This survival instinct is highly effective when a large, aggressive animal is chasing you, and you react instinctively in a way that could save your life. As such, the amygdala is often referred to as the survival center or sense-desire center – the desire to seek that which you feed off of and the desire to avoid that which is feeding off you.
  • You also have the higher EXECUTIVE CENTER, the prefrontal cortex, and most importantly the medial prefrontal cortex area that allows you to see both sides simultaneously and objectively.

So, if you’re in survival mode, driven by subcortical brain dominance, you tend to have impulses towards and instincts away from, be seeking and avoiding, have false perceptions and missing information.

Living in systems 1 or with subcortical brain dominance or survival mode is not where you are likely to maximize your growth and potential.

Another way of looking at survival mode is that it’s a distress zone.

Anytime you fear the loss of something or fear the gain of something, you have distress and live in a phobic environment.

However, the moment you see both sides simultaneously and are fully present, you are likely to mindfully see the hidden order in the apparent chaos. Seeing both sides simultaneously and understanding that nothing is missing in your awareness means that you’re not ignorant. Instead, you’re filled with wisdom. This activates the higher functioning prefrontal cortex or systems 2 thinking.

Wisdom is the instantaneous recognition that the blessing and the crisis come together, the support and challenge.

Think of it this way. If I was to come up to you and say, “You’re always nice, never mean. Always kind, never cruel. Always generous, never stingy. Always giving, never taking. Always considerate, never inconsiderate. Always peaceful, never wrathful. Always positive, never negative,” your intuition would let you know this was untrue and that you have another side to you.

If I said, “You’re always mean, never nice. Always cruel, never kind. Always negative, never positive. Always wrathful, never peaceful. Always stingy, never generous. Always taking, never giving. Always inconsiderate, never considerate,” your intuition would once again remind you of your other side.

So, if I point out all your downsides and no upsides, you’ll immediately think, “No, I’ve got upsides too.” If I point out all your upsides and no downsides, you’ll think of all the times you weren’t so nice. In other words, you would intuitively know that you have both sides.

If you’re fully aware of this and can embrace these two sides in yourself, in others, and life in general, you’ll be far more likely to stay centered, more objective, and maximize your potential.

I call it the Great Discovery, that the mind is not one-sided.

Let’s pause for a minute and see how this knowledge and its subsequent implementation can help you move from the amygdala survival center (systems 1) where you tend to REACT to your strategic objective executive center (systems 2) where you ACT.

Here is part of a process called the Demartini Method that I teach in the Breakthrough Experience:

Let’s say, as an example, that somebody comes up to you and you perceive that they challenge you. Perhaps they display a trait, action, or inaction that you dislike or despise that you perceive them demonstrating.

It is wise to ask: “What specific trait, action, or inaction do I perceive this individual displaying or demonstrating that I dislike most?”

This could be verbal criticism, as an example.

Immediately you may realize that you’re seeing the criticism but not the praise, the rejection but not the uplift.

In the quantum physics world, there’s something called entanglement. Entanglement means that you have these pairs of opposites, and it doesn’t matter how far away they are; they still function as if they are one unit, a simultaneous pair of opposites.

I believe this to occur in the mind.

The moment you see something you perceive as being critical, you simultaneously compare it to its opposite when someone praises you.

The pleasure of one accentuates the pain of the other. So as long as you’re addicted to the pleasure of somebody supporting you, you’re likely to fear and dislike the pain associated with the person who is criticizing you.

The more you’re addicted to praise, the more painful someone’s criticism will feel. As long as you’re addicted to support, the challenge is likely to be painful.

In other words, even though you may be looking for and seeking one side, the other side’s still inseparably there. It’s entangled and actually demonstrates a simultaneous pair of opposites.

Many people don’t see it and ignore it because when they’re in survival mode, they are likely to see only one side and have a resulting skewed view, a subjectively biased view, a false positive or false negative.

  • A false positive is assuming something is there that isn’t.
  • A false negative is assuming something isn’t there that is.

So you end up having these confirmation and disconfirmation biases on your reality and not seeing things as they actually are.

Instead, you see things as you ASSUME they are.

This becomes your reality that results in your attractive impulses and repulsive instincts and the fact that you let your incomplete and distorted perception of the world run you. You tend to become a victim of your misperceptions and environment and disempower your life.

However, when you ask a quality question that takes you back to that moment and makes you fully present with these five variables: where, when, content, context, and also who the vector is, who they’re doing it to, your intuition will surface instantaneously an individual in reality, or virtual reality, that is counterbalancing that at the moment.

If you become aware of both of them simultaneously, you can see the hidden order in the apparent chaos. The apparent chaos or disorder was simply due to the missing or unconscious information.

As I said earlier, the quality of your life is based on the quality of the questions you ask.

If you ask questions that make you aware of the unconscious simultaneously with the conscious, you can become fully conscious. The Demartini Method that I teach in the Breakthrough Experience comprises a specific set of questions that allows you to see this hidden order and dissolve the disordered baggage stored in your subconscious mind from all the things you’re running away from and seeking.

Because anytime you see only one side and are ignorant of the other side, this incompletely informed event is stored in the subconscious mind as an impulse and instinct that makes you spontaneously REACT to your environment without any governance.

However, if you consciously see both sides simultaneously, you liberate yourself, and act wisely or mindfully from within.

As such, you are more able to become grateful, inspired, inwardly driven, objective, set realistic goals in real-time, authentic, and extract meaning from your existence.

One of the distinctions between the animals and us is that animals commonly live in survival mode with a ‘prey and predator’ mentality and a subjective bias. On the other hand, human beings can extract meaning out of our existence, transcend those pairs of opposites and put them into simultaneous contrast, and become fully present.

Everything you perceive as a problem results from missing information and incomplete awareness.

That’s what a problem is. It’s missing information that keeps you from being objective, neutral, resilient, and present.

It is wise to live beyond the fear zone, have a more transcended awareness, and realize that there are simultaneous pairs of opposites at all times in each present moment.

Every perception has a pair of opposites. When you become truly present in any one moment of perception you can see both sides, become fully conscious, and dissolve previous subconsciously stored baggage that is like an animal inside you and wake up a higher ordered state, which is like an angel in you.

As such, you can liberate yourself from the subconscious baggage that’s running your life and end up living your life by a more centered and inspired mission.

To sum it up

  • Every problem you’ll ever face in any of the seven areas of your life comes down to this one thing: MISSING or UNCONSCIOUS INFORMATION.
  • Missing information could also be considered the unconscious mind.
  • When you’re infatuated, you’re unconscious and missing information about the downside. When you’re resentful, you’re unconscious and missing information about the upside. As a result, you’re likely ignorant of what the WHOLE is. 
  • This missing information is entropy, which often results in disorder and chaos.
  • Wisdom is knowing how to wake up in your mind the questions that make you aware of the part you normally ignore. 
  • I use the Demartini Method that I teach in my two-day program, the Breakthrough Experience, to help you work methodically through the process of making the unconscious conscious. As such, you can learn tools to help you live a life of inspiration instead of quiet desperation. This process will help you transcend your animal brain, your survival reactive systems 1 fast-thinking brain to access your higher executive center or prefrontal cortex also known as systems 2 or slow thinking thrival brain. Mind mastery is life mastery and developing your executive center is the path to finding the order in the illusionary disorder.
  • Wisdom is the instantaneous recognition that the blessing and the crisis come together, the support and challenge are like two poles of one magnet. 
  • If you become aware of both of them simultaneously, you can see the hidden order in the apparent chaos. The chaos or disorder was simply the missing or unconscious information.

Join me at my signature seminar, the Breakthrough Experience so I can teach you the Demartini Method. It's a tool with a thousand uses that is hugely valuable for coaches to use both for themselves and for their client empowerment.

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The Hidden Order and the Great Discovery Fuelling Your Growth and Empowerment