Rigden: …Let us examine what happens to a person when the Animal nature attacks him.
Attacks of the Animal nature can be different. You must know your enemy by sight, as they say. To begin with, let’s examine the violent attack of the Animal nature which is based on resentment, a sense of dissatisfaction with oneself, or excessive self-criticism, under the common slogan of “life didn’t work out” (the “victim” position). First of all, such a violent attack of the Animal nature can be described as an external pressure. If you look carefully from the perspective of the Observer from the Spiritual nature from where this pressure stems, which can be sensed even at the physical level, you will feel it coming exactly from the outside, from top to bottom, as if pressure from the side of the head or from the back to the chest.
As a result of such a violent attack of the Animal nature, within a short period of time, one turns from an active individual into a passive person, becomes disoriented. He seems to lose some kind of a foundation, a base under himself. Negative images, thoughts, and far-fetched problems suddenly surface and start playing in his consciousness, drawing and focusing his attention on them… When this happens, a person experiences a state of dissatisfaction and emotional stress which manifests itself mainly in standard patterns. It gets unpleasant and uncomfortable inside as if something is getting compressed inside the chest. It is difficult to focus on any work because extraneous thoughts are constantly distracting him to muse on one and the same sore subject. Resentment or, as they say, an “emotional pain” arises; bad thoughts weigh one down, self-blame and self-torment for something begin. A tangle of negative thoughts, associations, and emotions appears. In general, attention becomes focused on the problem which is being intensified by the Animal nature. Person’s consciousness narrows down to the point of this problem. He starts seeing only this problem and nothing else. For example, a person turns on the TV set, trying to distract himself from these thoughts. But consciousness, as if on purpose, clings and focuses his attention on those fragments of programmes which touch on his sore problem. Here is another example: a person in this state begins a discussion with somebody on unrelated subjects. But eventually, he does not even notice that consciousness still unwittingly takes the conversation into the channel of the same contrived problems… If a person experiences such a state, he must understand that this obsession with negative thoughts and such a depressed state of consciousness is actually the beginning of an attack of the Animal nature.
Anastasia: In other words, the person sort of reacts to the situation one-sidedly.
Rigden: Absolutely, he simply loses a holistic perception of the picture of the world; his consciousness narrows. A person becomes obsessed with a certain problem. Figuratively speaking, before this he would see a wide range of colours, but during an attack of the Animal nature he is focused only on the black colour while other colours cease to exist for him; he does not seem to notice them.
What is the purpose of this violent attack of the Animal nature? Its goal is to block the connection of the Personality with the Soul which is why there is a kind of pressure from the outside to the inside. During such an attack, figuratively speaking, the signal from the Soul does not reach the consciousness of the Personality in its pure form (as it happens in spiritual practices) and is significantly distorted through the activation of “contaminated filters”. It is important to know that the Animal nature mostly catches the human at his own weaknesses, for it is aware of all of the person’s weak spots, of his past and present, of all his secret dreams on which he once focused his attention, wishing for this or that benefaction of this world for his precious self. And what is more, the desires which burden the spiritual way do not appear in a person or rather in his new Personality out of nowhere. These are mostly traditional materially inclined attitude patterns, which dominate in the surrounding society. Which is why the majority of people are dominated by such qualities from the Animal nature as egocentrism, envy, immense greed, and pity for their precious selves…
Anastasia: Yes, man gets very quickly infected with motivations from the Animal nature.
Rigden: By the way, I would like to mention that, during an attack of the Animal nature, a person sees himself only as being “a good person”. He is supposedly “super” in all respects, and everyone else is nothing less than a “creepy scum”. When a person is in such a state, you’d better not tell them directly that they themselves are to blame because their negative qualities have manifested; otherwise, such people will immediately direct all this negativity in your direction as well. His Animal nature will immediately begin to aggressively defend its positions. The fact is that, while in such a state, a person does not consciously perceive your explanations and observations regarding his Personality. Why does this happen?
First of all, because the person’s consciousness is narrowed at this moment and because he is obsessed with his own egoism. In this state, nothing and nobody exists for a person other than “Me, myself, and I” in various guises.
Anastasia: Well, the Animal nature is a true master of laying the blame on somebody else and inventing external causes, should you just give it a chance. Another favourite technique of the Animal nature is to slip a thought to a person that will lead him in a vicious circle: “It could have been completely different if only…” By the way, readers often ask why this kind of looping of thoughts happens, even if a person only feels worse because of this?
Rigden: For two reasons. First of all, this is the work of the Animal nature. It creates internal conditions for the choice of the person. And what the Personality gives preference to in its short life (the Will of the Spiritual nature or the Animal one, good or bad thoughts) is the right of the Personality itself. However, the priorities the person chooses daily for his afterlife destiny. Secondly, the looping of negative thoughts is just one of the techniques of the Animal nature with which it draws man’s attention to itself, making the Personality serve the whims of the Animal mind, thus wasting life energy on mortal things. The fact is that during such a looping of thoughts, a person engages in self-blame, becomes angry, and is constantly thinking about the past. Simply put, his consciousness narrows to an emotional, one-sided point of perception of some “personal” problem; at the same time, he does not even understand who, why, and for what purpose has set this very direction of thinking in him. And it is not even a matter of a specific contrived problem (once this problem is solved, another one will surely appear). The truth of the matter is that it is necessary to learn to control oneself; then there will be fewer inner problems since it is those that external situations grow out of in a person’s life.
Anastasia: That’s true, or else such running round in circles will continue until the end of life. It is just like in the proverb: “You pull and he pulls. No matter who wins, both will fall”.
Rigden: Sometimes for half his lifetime, the person will nag at himself because of some missed opportunities as far as improving his life in the material world goes. He dreams of such unrealized “happiness” and sees it only in a good light for himself, where his own importance (megalomania) is satisfied and takes the first place in his dreams. A person does not take into account that the Animal nature is simply drawing another ideal illusion for him and that his dream, once realised, would look entirely different from what he imagined. In this state, man does not understand that, had everything happened differently, nobody knows what kind of a person he would be today and whether he would have the conditions and opportunities that he now has. Since each step in life implies changes and entails a chain of events which shape the future of a person.
Anastasia: Well, unless human begins to understand his nature, it will be difficult for him to realise what his true “happiness” consists of…
Rigden: There is another type of attack of the Animal nature – the soft and subtle one, based on false pride. It is exactly the opposite of the violent type. During such an attack of the Animal nature, a person thinks that he has everything under control, that he is so cool, that everyone around him is praising him. But if you look at this situation from the perspective of the Observer from the Spiritual nature and analyse these moments of self-admiration, then it becomes clear that all of them are based on selfobsession and egoism. Man’s consciousness narrows in the same way, he is similarly focused on his precious self, only this time in another direction. Metaphorically speaking, like a Narcissus, he notices nobody around him other than himself. And the pressure is again felt from the outside to the inside, only it is not violent but subtle, endearing, satisfying, with a sense of enjoying the outer.
Anastasia: What other traps can be expected from the Animal nature?
Rigden: The ways of its influence are diverse. For instance, you are doing an important task that will influence many people and their lives in a good way in the end. Already at the first stages of implementation of this task, the Beast (the Animal nature) starts planting ideas that require you to spend the same amount of efforts and time on them as on the main task. These ideas, which are really not important at the moment, begin to divert your attention with a multitude of their issues that require an “immediate solution”. Thus, you will simply get caught up in these problems and, as the saying goes, there will be much ado about nothing. But in the end, if you evaluate the efficiency rate of your actions, it will become clear that the mundane actions have not shown such a significant result as the initial action, which you abandoned, could have done. Yet, the time has been lost and efforts wasted. So this is a subtle substitution.
Here is another version of an attack of the Animal nature from the substitution of notions repertoire. For example, you have managed to notice an attack and were able to hold your position. But suddenly, some sort of panic starts inside, something like “Help! I urgently want into Eternity! What is to be done?! How can I be saved immediately?” This is another subtle substitution. Unfortunately, there are many such substitutions.
…The funniest thing is that the Animal nature has standard, same-type programmes. People step on the same rake, and everyone thinks that they are the only ones who get hit on the forehead. Each person thinks that he has it worse than everyone else and that it is just his obstacles that are the most difficult to overcome. But all this gloom is another trap of the Animal nature to get a person to focus his attention on its purposes. By knowing these tricks, however, one can easily foresee and avert another attack, avoid traps. The most common programmes of the Animal nature are based on pride, egocentrism, and fear. These negative feelings cause envy, jealousy, grief, resentment, self-pity, the wish to control and discuss others, to blame someone, the fear of changes, fear of diseases, loss of the close ones, fear of loneliness, of the approach of old age, death, and so on. Here, the same processes of narrowing of consciousness take place which I have already mentioned.
But as they used to say in the ancient times, he who climbs a high mountain laughs at everyday bustle. If a person seriously wants to take care of his personal spiritual development, he must first of all discipline his thoughts. As often as possible, he must be aware of the emotions he is experiencing and of his way of thinking, analyse their nature and the mechanism of emergence. He must be able to be above the circumstances and the mundane. He must be able to perceive the world from the perspective of the Observer from the Spiritual nature and not from the usual perspective of the Observer from the Animal nature.
The Animal nature is constantly presenting a person with a big illusion about what human’s inner world is, putting an emphasis on the Personality’s Ego and what the outer world, which should supposedly be serving this Ego, is, in its interpretation. From the perspective of this illusion, it imposes on the Personality erroneous opinions about the world and other people, thus distancing the person from perceiving the Truth. In reality, everything is different.
From the book “AllatRa” by A. Novykh