Wisdom from the POTEGP- Village Path. Be a worker or apprentice for a respectable boss or mentor whose leadership inspires Loyalty.
The Third spiritual misconception one needs to resolve before they die is that the universe has only three dimensions.
This misconception can take two forms. In the first version, everything but the everyday world we see around us [the physical world/ universe or 3d world] is not real! Any existence beyond the 3d is a myth or superstition, like heaven, hell, divine existence, miracles or afterlife.
The second version of the misconception is the opposite view – the physical world and our physical existence is not real. In this version, there is truly only the non-3d and what we feel about our 3d existence is nothing but some sort of non-3d cosmic dream.
So this misconception can take two general forms: the first form in which the only reality is the three physical dimensions (the 3d) that the laws of science seem to govern; and the second form in which the so-called three physical dimensional universe (the 3d) is not real and the only reality is in the non-3d universe (the part of the universe that would be beyond the three physical dimensions).
The truth is the 3d (everyday world) and the non-3d are both real!
The universe contains both the three physical dimensions and dimensions beyond the everyday three physical ones. But that doesn’t mean the whole universe (both the 3d parts and the non-3d parts) do not follow the laws of science.
In this context you cannot equate the existence of the non-3d as the same as there being a heaven or hell. The non-3d isn’t necessarily divine/supernatural or in other words exempt to the laws of science/nature. Of course, even if certain aspects of the non-3d do abide by the laws of science/nature (even if the science is undiscovered at this time), that doesn’t mean there isn’t a divine existence or a heaven and hell.
I don’t want to bore or lose the less scientifically inclined seekers with a lot of scientific explanations (I will cover the science more rigidly and more completely in appendix A). So I’ll just state the scientifically known truths or as much as is known at this time.
To do this, I first would like to look at a brief history of the relationship between religion and science in the eastern European region. This is not to imply any of the ideas necessarily only originated in this region or that the following ideas necessarily were first developed/discovered in this region. The point of this exercise is pretty universal and the concepts followed a similar development in most other areas of the world, so any major region would basically show a similar development of the separation in the concepts of religion and science.
At first, there weren’t two separate concepts of religion and natural science. There was, in essence, only one natural law, the law of the gods, which governed and explained all of the natural phenomena or natural sciences as well as any non-3d events/concepts.
When humanity started developing metallurgy, herding/ husbandry, and agriculture, they opened a door that would eventually lead to the first separations of science (the natural laws governing metallurgy and agriculture) from religion.
This separation continued through the years. It increased with the study of math and philosophy in and around 450 BCE, and with Aristotle’s formalizing the study of nature as science in and around 350 BCE.
At this point there started to be a competition between established religions and science. The concept of atheism started to form. Philosophy and natural science was starting to provide answers to questions that previously only had religious based answers.
The traditional ‘Sacred Cows’ of natural events serving as proof there was a god or gods or the supernatural, started falling one by one to the new sciences.
One of the first was the need for god or gods for controlling natural phenomena like day and night and the four seasons; these fell to the new sciences of astronomy and Newton’s laws explaining celestial motion.
One of the next losses was the belief that disease and illness was the product of supernatural spirits. This was brought about by the sciences of medicine and biology explaining disease and illness as 3d or natural processes.
Philosophical proof of the supernatural or ‘God’ started to revolve around the origin of life, the first cause and the noble/self sacrificing emotions.
These last three ‘proofs’ were then attacked by the science of evolution, the philosophy of “ God is dead,” and the new social science of psychology. (see appendix A for a more complete discussion of these points).
The last general argument for proof of ‘God’ or the supernatural, besides the question of an afterlife existence, is the existence of miracles. The atheist’s response is that there are no miracles; there is just yet undiscovered science.
Of course, none of the above constitutes an irrefutable proof of no god or no supernatural part of the universe. It just argues that none of the above constitutes proof that there is a god or supernatural entity.
Part of the misconception is the idea that the existence of non-3d is the same as there being supernatural parts of the universe.
In truth, there are more dimensions than the common three spatial dimensions, but there is nothing necessarily supernatural about them. Again, just because there are some natural non-3d (by natural or non-supernatural I mean they behave according to the laws of science), it neither proves nor disproves the existence of some supernatural part of the universe or the existence of ‘God’.
How many dimensions are there? I don’t know, but it’s considered a scientific fact that there are more than the commonly accepted three physical dimensions. In the early 1900s, scientists became aware that you couldn’t explain all the physical effects they could see in the universe if there were only three dimensions.
The concept of a 4th dimension (the 3 physical plus time) was introduced by Einstein to explain the effects of relativity.
But adding a 4th dimension still wasn’t enough to explain the effects of quantum mechanics. Currently the most advanced theory, though still incomplete (one of the string or loop theories), states that there needs to be at least 11 dimensions in order to be able to even start explaining all the observable effects in the universe.
So the truth is that not only are the three physical dimensions (the 3d) real, but there are many non physical dimensions (non-3d) that are also real. The universe is composed of both the common three physical dimensions (the 3d) and many non-physical dimensions (the non-3d).
So what is the nature of these other dimensions? Well that depends….
For a Deist and Theist we could use a model where these additional dimensions (the non-3d) show up as four other sets of dimensions. They can be labeled the spiritual dimensions, the intellectual dimensions, the transcendental dimensions and the divine dimensions.
For an Agnostic, we could look at the Buddhist model as an example, in which the dimensions are labeled as frames; the 3d/physical or 1st frame, the emotional or 2nd frame, the intellectual or 3rd frame, the analytical or 4th frame and the supra-mundane or 5th frame.
For an Atheist, we could look at the Village Path’s evolutionary model that examines facets of evolution in relation to degrees of Free Will; fight, flight, freeze, surrender & Total Free Will (self determination). Or, we could look at Freud’s model of id, super-ego, ego, amongst other models used to illustrate one’s Free Will in relation to the 3d and non-3d.
So the third spiritual misconception one needs to resolve before they die is that the universe is either only 3d or that the universe is only non-3d…
The truth is the universe is made up of both 3d and non-3d!
(As stated above, this is totally consistent with currently known science as well as most spiritual and divine based systems, see appendix A.)
Potegp uses models to signify the point that we are not trying to teach divine or complete truths/concepts. Models are used as tools to help one make progress within its limits – remember not to look for divine/complete truths through limited use of human words.
Okay, why does this matter? Why bother with the discussion of non-3d if the existence of non-3d doesn’t prove or disprove the existence of God or gods or that there is any divine part of nature (non-science part of the universe)???
It matters for the Theist (God based religion paths) because it’s a non-3d attribute that enables miracles and spiritual based charity.
It matters for Agnostic & Deist paths because a non-3d attribute enables one to be able to self-sacrifice and develop awareness.
It matters also for Atheist based paths because a non-3d attribute enables one to overcome evolution and develop total free will.
The POTEGP word label for theist’s ability to have spiritual based charity…is the noble attribute of Loyalty.
The POTEGP word label for the agnostic’s or deist’s ability to physically self-sacrifice…is the noble attribute of Loyalty.
The POTEGP word label for the atheist’s ability to overcome evolution of the biochemical body…is the noble attribute of Loyalty.
The third person one needs to meet before they die is a boss, mentor or leader whose sense of responsibility towards others can inspire Loyalty in their employees, apprentices or followers.
The third person one needs to be before they die is a worker or apprentice or follower, who can then be inspired by a responsible leader to develop a Spiritual level of Loyalty.
A worker, apprentice or follower who is inspired can experience the third life one needs to live before they die.
The Third life one needs to live before they die is that of an inspired employee, apprentice or follower because such a life gives the opportunity for that person to experience/develop/learn a Spiritual level of the Noble attribute of Loyalty.
I will be using the Atheist Model and the Atheist Path’s set of word labels for this section. For example, I will use levels of Free Will rather than levels of spiritual awareness. I have chosen to use the Atheist model for this section because the Village path is designed to support the metaphysical philosophy of an Atheist. But that’s not to say the Village Path won’t also work for non-Atheists – it could also work for Deists, Theists and Agnostics. One would just need to use slightly different models and a different set of word labels. Depending on a person’s metaphysical belief, the word labels or vocabulary used may change. And even though the labels change according to one’s beliefs, the labels themselves are simply different ways to describe the same or similar underlying processes.
So in the Atheist model and corresponding word labels, a person’s ability to overcome the instincts bred by evolution/ ego reaction, is governed by their level of Free Will (rather than their level of spirituality). POTEGP uses levels/states of consciousness to describe the degree or amount of Free Will to which one has access.
 i.e. with a religion based path I would use the attribute of spiritual based charity rather than free will.
As an example, at the lowest levels/degrees of Free Will, the model used to illustrate this process is nature’s evolutionary traits or the biochemical reactions of the body. This can be seen in the fight or flight response (derived by threats to bodily changes in hunger, pain, fear and rage). Regarding humans, we would say that at the lowest degree of Free Will one couldn’t overrule the physical facet of the evolved human ego (as represented by greed/ self interest/ self preservation). Therefore, when one’s physical facet of ego is in control (of their actions), the instinctive reaction is to fight/flee. This degree of free will is a mono-faceted state of consciousness.
A common example is road rage. When a fellow driver does something to violate your sense of free will, like pulling into ‘your’ lane without your ‘permission’ or is going too slow in the fast lane, this driver interferes with your freewill to go as fast as you want. This “threat” to your physical self-interest or sense of free will cause the chemical reaction of rage.
At the next level of Free Will, one would have the choice to overcome the evolutionary instinctive fight/flight response, but not have enough Free Will to overcome the freeze response. This process can be seen in non-herd prey animals like rabbits or even deer. Remember, it’s the Free Will to overcome the flight/fight reaction. At this degree of conscious awareness one would have the Free Will to decide to fight or flee. This degree of free will can be seen as a bi-facated state of consciousness. The moment of time it takes for one to process the decision of which action to choose (if any are put into play at all) is the freeze reaction.
The next level of Free Will is a tri-facated level of consciousness… At this level, one has the ability to observe three facets or perspectives of self. In other words, one has more options (higher levels of freewill) to choose from when considering which actions/course to take. An example of this degree of Free Will is illustrated in my personal story below.
 Mono-facated – at this level of conscious awareness/degree of free will the “person” is unable to truly make a decision, because they only have enough conscious awareness to observe one input. This state is more reactive, sort of like a subconscious or instinctive level response to the situation
 Bi-facated – at this level of conscious awareness the person/animal is able to observe two perspectives; as an example think of those old cartoons when suddenly an “angel” and a “devil” appears to the protagonist to offer suggestions. This is also seen in Freud’s ID, Ego, SuperEgo, in which the Ego is seen as the one regarding the angel (SuperEgo) and devil(ID), and it is the Ego that decides which advice to take.
 Tri-facated – at this level of conscious awareness or degree of free will on is using their analytical perspective to observe the physical, emotional and intellectual inputs/perspectives or able to weigh the decision between the 3d & non-3d while understanding the relationship between cause and effect.
The Noble attribute of Loyalty enables one to set aside their own physical well-being for the good of others (for example: when a fireman runs into a burning house to save someone, he overcomes evolution’s instinct of self-preservation).
If one lives a life based on Loyalty at a conscious level of awareness, they will be able to learn/develop the noble attribute of Loyalty.The Noble attribute of Loyalty enables one to put aside or overcome the physical part of their Ego, or be able to set aside the 3d based facet of Ego, the 3d facet of ego is usually represented by 3d self interest/greed. To apply a Noble level of Loyalty doesn’t necessarily mean you have to experience a life/death situation as you will read in the story below.
I was in my twenties when I gained direct level awareness of the attribute of Loyalty. I had always lived with a strong sense of loyalty, but it was not at a Noble level.
Before this event, my loyalty came in levels. It was like a target or a set of concentric circles, with highest level of loyalty for the innermost circle and lower levels as one moved out to the outer circles.
At the innermost circle and the highest sense of loyalty was my parents, the next was my siblings…… then friends and other relatives…… later in life my business relationships, be it the company I was working for, or partners or employees joined in this circle/ level of loyalty. Next was my community and country……. And so forth and so on to wider circles and lower levels of my sense of loyalty.
As with Trust, my ability to learn a Noble level of Loyalty required me to see /have an example/ experience of Noble Loyalty at a conscious level of awareness. Of course the dual requirement of having both the experience and a conscious awareness of what is happening brings up the same chicken and egg dilemma……. It’s very hard to have conscious awareness of something until you know what it is that you are experiencing; but you can’t know it really until you learn it, but you can’t learn it until you experience at a conscious level…..
As with most Americans that grew up in the fifties, I always had a sense of loyalty, loyalty being the foundation of patriotism, something that has been taught by the example and stories of our parents. They were members of what some call the greatest generation…. The generation that had through sacrifice and courage fought and won World War II. This lesson of patriotism (patriotism: loyalty to one’s country or village) was further reinforced daily by the cold war. This loyalty celebrated every four years at the Olympics.
In my early twenties, my parents were becoming empty nesters. Their four oldest children were all out on their own and their youngest child, my sister, was away at college and only back home for a rare weekend visit. So by the time my sister had reached her senior year, my parents had made the decision to go from the major upkeep of a house to living in an easier maintained condo.
Simplifying their living situation was important for my parents as my father was always tied up with his practice (as a family doctor in solo practice his life was getting up at 6 AM to do hospital rounds in the morning, then office hours in the afternoon, then night rounds at the second hospital and finally late into the night doing house calls). My mother at this point had several major health issues, to the point that it was several years before she had recovered enough to even be able to drive or to shop or do errands.
My mother’s health issues led to a certain level of disorganization on her part and that led to the need to having ‘emergency’ pickups of medicine and other shopping, in particular milk, as she had several medications that had to be taken with a glass of milk. Inevitably this would lead to an ‘emergency’ request to one of her kids, for us to pick up her medication and/or milk once or twice a month.
At this time I lived the nearest to my parents, about 15 minutes away, so when my sister was away at school the ‘emergency’ pickup calls landed on my doorstep. Most of the time the requests weren’t much of an issue and actually served as a way to fit in a mutually welcomed chance to visit.
On this fateful Saturday morning the call came at a most inopportune time. I had just set up to repair a leaky gutter…… I had set out tools and sawhorses in my driveway (behind my car) and just finished putting up ladders for scaffolding.
So when my mother called saying she was completely out of milk and needed me to pick some up, I tried to get her to agree for a delivery later but she said she would really appreciate it if I could do it right away. So not wanting to disappoint or fail my mother I agreed to do it right away.
Now, out of my sense of loyalty (and love) I accepted my duty to help my mother out. But while my sense of loyalty was enough for me to accept the duty it wasn’t at a high enough level for me to accept it without some sense of aggravation. So as I packed up my tools that were blocking my car and took down the ladders that I felt would be too tempting a diversion for the neighborhood kids that were out and about that Saturday, I could feel my aggravation level growing.
So as a dutiful/ loyal son I went to the store, picked up milk and made the 15 minute trip to my mother, still feeling aggravated by the situation.
When I entered my mother’s condo I see my sister lounging on the couch…… ?????? ….. I’m confused …… I can’t understand …… if my sister was home, why did my mother call me…… why didn’t she just have my sister run to the store …. Rather than have me run the errand from two towns away?????
My mind is trying to process this…… initially it jumps to the conclusion that my sister must have just gotten in….. but…… she’s in her pajamas…… so instead of saying hi… I blurt out…..when did you get home….. her puzzled response …. Puzzled because her opening statement had been “hi brother, it’s great to see you…” finally she recovers and says she and her friend had gotten in late last night….????
My mind is whirling…..my aggravation is growing to anger …… and my feet, on their own, have carried me into the kitchen…… why has my mother dragged me from two towns away if my sister was already here…… as I enter the kitchen I see my mother is gathering ingredients to start cooking…… not the expected pills that I thought she had needed the milk for…….
My mother explains the emergency, that when she had asked my sister what she and her friend wanted for breakfast my sister had said she would love some of my mother’s great homemade pancakes…. So my mother needed milk to make breakfast for my sister and her friend…..by this time my earlier sense of aggravation had grown to anger.. so my angry response was, that’s fine but why didn’t you just tell her to go get the milk???
Her response……. But Greg she had just gotten up and was tired from driving all night and she had company……..at this point my anger blew up to resentment …… my next angry, resenting words left my mother crying as I stormed out of the condo…….
As I drove home my feeling of resentment grew to self-righteous anger (no doubt further fueled by the guilt that I was also feeling because I had caused my mother to cry)……. I realized that I felt I had been betrayed, my loyalty to my mother had been abused, my willingness to self-sacrifice for her had been traded to my sister. I mean I love my sister and would come to her aid or do her a favor, but my loyalty to my sister didn’t go to the level of running errands for her because she was tired or had a college friend over…………. Sick in bed or no car yes, but tired……… I had been abused…….. I made the decision …..never again…… my words to my mother came back to me as I now sat in my car , parked back in my driveway …… “mom this is the last straw…. Don’t call me any more unless it’s for YOUR medication, I’m not an errand boy or a milkman……”
I sat there ……. Thinking …… how could this happen…..basically I was so emotionally upset that I was thinking of writing off my sister and mother….. I realized that it had to be more than just the aggravation or inconvenience of this morning…… I then realized the power of loyalty and in this case the power of feeling my mother and sister had been disloyal in abusing my sense of loyalty…. I felt that I had been tricked……
As I struggled to understand what I was sensing, feeling, thinking, my awareness was shifting to a tri-facated level of consciousness or a fourth frame level of awareness. This viewpoint allowed me to gain some distance ……. I could see from an outside perspective what my physical sensations were……. What my emotional feelings were …… what my thoughts were….. I could see them all without being clouded by them or deluded by them ……. The forest wasn’t being blocked by all the trees…… I could see both the forest and the trees…… what did I see???………. Well three things……
First that the trees made no sense…..my sense of being abused, my feelings of resentment, my thoughts of betrayal….it made no sense when I looked at the forest… the big picture… why??? Because the big picture was three people that not only felt love for each other, but three people who also knew they were loved by each other…… and what was being added to this love was loyalty….. loyalty a spiritual attribute, what should be a Noble attribute…… how can the adding something that should be noble to love lead to my current situation of negative states… a sense of being abused…. Feelings of resentment ….thoughts of betrayal……. It can’t…..
I realized I had to be delusional about some part of the situation…… I know I wasn’t delusional about having negative thoughts and feelings, I could clearly see them in me from the big picture or fourth frame perspective, they were real….. I could also clearly see I wasn’t being delusional about the love, I could clearly see and know that my sister, mother and I mutually loved and cared for each other…. That just left one last element….. Loyalty, I had to be delusional about loyalty!!!!!
I had to be either delusional about what loyalty was or I had to be delusional about my having loyalty to my sister and mother or I was delusional that loyalty was good or a Noble attribute……??????…..but if I was being delusional, it was a form of self delusion and how was I going to pierce my self-delusion …. Sitting there by myself…. ?????…… I realized I had to use my current outside perspective, fourth frame / analytical perspective to see the situation from a non-self view point…..in retrospect I now realize it was basically the same situation that I had in learning Noble Trust, I couldn’t learn it by focusing on myself, but could see it without the clouding of self-delusion in Big Gramp…..
This time I tried to pierce the self-delusion by reliving the experience from my mother’s perspective……… what was she thinking????
I know she loved me…..and loved my sister….. was this about tricking me into doing a favor for my sister???…. most likely not, why?… because my mother, like many times in the past, would feel she could just straight out ask me to do a favor for my sister, she would have no thought she would have to trick me….. but why didn’t she see the unfairness of asking me to undergo a major inconvenience just to enable my sister to avoid a much more minor inconvenience????
The reason…..from her point of view was that it wasn’t about love, it wasn’t about loving or caring about my sister over me, it was about loyalty. No not a question about her level of loyalty between my sister and me…..
You see, society or tribe or village loyalty shows up not only in a sense of patriotism… its part of the concept of hospitality…. Loyalty is the attribute of being a host… history is full of examples of the power or sanctity of the responsibilities of a host…… the fact my sister had brought home a friend had shifted my mother’s instinctive perception of the situation… it wasn’t about interfamily but about the family being a good host….. I could see from my new perspective that from my mother’s perspective as a hostess that not being able to provide breakfast or meeting a request for pancakes would be an emergency……
In these days of people having a sense of entitlement it may be hard to appreciate the high level of tribal loyalty being a host required…. To be truthful while I try and think I am an okay host, I don’t come up to the standard of my parents and grandparents………. If you didn’t experience that society you might not be able to appreciate their sense of host loyalty, for example, you have to realize they lived through the depression where there wasn’t always enough food, most of the average people of my generation never really experienced true hunger nor my children’s generation…. Well the depression generations did, and it was common that mothers went without food so that they could feed their children, self sacrificing for their loved ones…… I saw those same mothers also send the kids to bed hungry so they could provide food for a guest…..
So yes I can see that not only was the lack of milk a host emergency, it also explained why I was called. My sister was responsible to be present so that the friend would have the comfort of someone they knew being present.
I could now see the level of host based tribe loyalty my mother had in this situation. I could see if I had had that level of loyalty for my mother in the first place, I wouldn’t be sitting in my driveway with all these negative feelings and thoughts. I could have been sitting at my mother’s kitchen table eating homemade pancakes, visiting with a loved and loving sister, not only catching up with each other’s lives, but getting to do one of the best things an older brother can do to a kid sister……. Tease her by telling all those embarrassing childhood stories to her friend…..let’s see…. My choice is to sit in the driveway feeling miserable and sorry for myself…. Or go back to my mother’s for homemade pancakes and visiting with my sister and meeting her friend…. And…. Maybe just one or two teasing childhood stories……
Of course on the way back to my mother’s, a quick stop at the store… I didn’t remember seeing any blueberries and of course you can’t depend on my sister appreciating the importance of a side of salty, greasy bacon with homemade pancakes…..and of course an extra bottle of milk … or two.
So the second point I realized was that I didn’t have a Noble level of loyalty/ an unconditional level of loyalty for my mother. At the level I currently had I was loyal enough to run the errand, but not loyal to the level of not having a negative feeling, a sense of aggravation. It was like when I learned to have a Noble level of Trust. At regular trust levels I trusted Big Gramp enough to jump off the pier, but I still had the fear of sinking. It was only when I had a Noble level of Trust that I could not only jump off but do it without fear……
Noble Loyalty acted the same way. While regular loyalty was enough to get me to run the errand, it wasn’t enough to set aside the feeling of aggravation. If I had had a Noble level of Loyalty in the first place, I wouldn’t have had the sense of aggravation and therefore they wouldn’t have been the seeds of anger that later grew to resentment. Noble Loyalty is unconditional; my average loyalty had been conditional…..that’s why I had felt aggravated in the first place. My loyalty to my mother or willingness to do an errand for her had been subconsciously conditional. I evidently felt it was conditional, do an errand as long as it wasn’t at an inconvenient time; sure when its inconvenient I will still do it, but I will feel aggravated by it. The second time my average level caused a problem was the presence of my sister, again my willingness at some subconscious level had conditions. I would gladly do the errand as long as it wasn’t easier for someone else to do it…. Again, my loyalty wasn’t unconditional.
If I had unconditional Loyalty, it wouldn’t matter if my sister was closer or not. Either I am willing to do the errand or not. So now that I was aware of this higher level of loyalty I had to consciously decide what level of loyalty I owed my mother. While it was easy to see I owed my mother and father unconditional loyalty and in the future if my mother asked a favor I would either say yes I can or no I couldn’t. But if it was yes, then I did it without resentment or a sense of aggravation and whether or not others could do it easier or not would have no bearing on the situation.
Now I’ll be truthful, as I made the decision to strive for having Noble Loyalty with my mother. I had expectations that it would be abused and I would end up carrying most of the burden in caring for my parents going forward. However, I soon learned that all my siblings also had a high level/degree of loyalty and did at least as much as me and in some cases even more.