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Introduction to the Levels

BY PHILLIP WITTMEYER

The first row of the Maturation category is called "Level". Synonyms for Level are: stage, step, strata, grade, station, and standing. As indicated previously, unlike the six Dualized Aspects, Maturation is understood as a sequence, with each Age divided into seven Levels. Seven Levels times seven Ages equals forty nine steps in the Maturation sequence. Like the other Traits, each of the Levels is in one of the seven Processes, so each Level partakes of the meaning of its Process. In fact, Level is the Neutral Aspect, so this is even more true of it than the other Aspects. Level combines the meaning of the six other Aspects of Goal, Mode, Feature, Role, Attitude, and Center. People in a particular Level have a certain overall theme or emphasis or undercurrent in their life and perception, as they experience the Process of their Level. This will be explained in more detail in the following description of each Level.

THE FIRST LEVEL: "RESOLUTION"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Termination Process. This Level is a composite of the Submission Goal, Perseverance Mode, Martyrdom Feature, Warrior Role, Cynic Attitude, and Sexual Center. Here the person is very active in the affairs of his Age. There is a lot of action at this Level, but it is largely reaction rather than original and creative work. Often the person ranges out into previously unexplored territory, which he seeks to conquer and subdue. The person has the urge to get a lot of things done.

The person is just "getting his feet wet", so to speak, in the Age. Only the most basic elements of the perceptions of the Age of the person will be apparent. The person will usually be involved in rudimentary pursuits and issues because at this stage there is not much understanding of the nature of the challenges of the Age. The person will exhibit behavior and response with only a shallow perspective on the meaning of his actions. There is a lot of going over and over the basics but not much excursion into ramifications. The fundamentals are dealt with here and the greater issues are approached at other Levels. Only the theme of the Age and the foundational structures are experienced at this Level. First Level people seem innocent at best and backward at worst.

The Positive Pole of this Level is +Purpose, and the person in this Pole has a single-mindedness about him. He sees the path he wants to take and he takes it. His intentions and aims are well channeled in basic endeavors. There is an impetus and motivation that drives him. There is an ingredient of leadership to this level, because it is foremost among the Levels, but the person is hindered by the fact that his perceptions are unsophisticated in terms of understanding the Age. With his simplistic approach he may not be desirous of dealing with complex issues.

The Negative Pole is -Simplicity, and if the personality is stuck here, the person prefers not to face more than one challenge at a time. He stays at a rudimentary stage of development in his awareness and range of activities and interests. He feels the need to narrow his activities down to an uncomplicated lifestyle, and to delete anything that is not essential. He limits himself to a single, elementary purpose, perhaps doing little more than is necessary for survival. The way to rise above this is to consider and apply the Positive Pole of the Complementary Seventh Level, which is +Inculcation. Intentionally and purposefully face the challenges and make them a part of yourself, rather than hide from the complexity of life.

THE SECOND LEVEL: "GROUNDING"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Involution Process. Therefore it is the composite of the Reduction Goal, Repression Mode, Self-deprecation Feature, Server Role, Stoic Attitude, and Emotional Center.

The Positive Pole is +Balance. In this Pole, a person is constantly weighing the affairs in his life, with a view to discovering the proper proportions. He does not want to become distorted or exaggerated in any way. He mentally tests the issues that confront him by the question, Is it fair? He regards highly discernment and judgment. He likes to comparing things and decide between them which is more suitable.

The Negative Pole is -Stability, and in this Pole a person will tend to find his balance point and stay there, resisting changes which may even be for his own good. He will find situations that are comfortable to him and not risk them lest he upset his firmness. He prefers permanence to fairness. Whereas +Balance has fluidity, in -Stability Relation become a rigid structure. The way to overcome this is to consider and apply the Positive Pole of the Complementary Sixth Level, which is +Harmony. Break the stable structure and discover something different.

THE THIRD LEVEL: "PRODUCTION"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Analysis Process. This Level is the composite of the Rejection Goal, Caution Mode, Self-destruction Feature, Artisan Role, Skeptic Attitude, and Intellectual Center. Whereas the theme of the First Level involves action and the theme of the Second Level involves mood, the theme of the Third Level involves intellect. A person at this Level is discerning about his lifestyle and curious about the alternatives the world has to offer. He tries to make sense of life in general and figure out his relation to the world. He refines and sorts out his experiences. He questions everything. It is most important to him to understand life from a mental perspective. At this Level a Young Age person is at the height of his involvement in material pursuits the Level reinforces the Age. But in the Old Age person, this Level is one of introspection and soul-searching because the Level works against the Age.

The Positive Pole is +Enterprise, and the person is energetic for doing many things. There is no lack of desire to start projects, ventures, and exploits and keep them going. One undertaking after another is the pattern for a person in this Pole. Often this involves financial or political endeavors where the intellect is exercised and the person can make his mark on the world.

The Negative Pole is -Versatility. Here there are many projects in the works, clamoring for attention and completion. The person is "a jack of all trades and a master of none". He may be into so many things that his energy is scattered and wasted. He has a tendency to spread his ability too thin. The way to overcome this is to consider and apply the Positive Pole of the Complementary Fifth Level, which is +Expansion. Try to gather the energy into a more solid pattern. Put all the projects into one consistent venture.

THE FOURTH LEVEL: "COMPOSITION"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Assimilation Process. This Level is the composite of the Equilibrium Goal, Observation Mode, Stubbornness Feature, Scholar Role, Pragmatist Attitude, and Instinctive Center. Here the person wants to learn about all areas of life experience. He tends to be studious and vigilant, with an objective grasp of the overview. He gains understanding of his life that is not possible at earlier Levels.

The Positive Pole is +Consolidation, and here the person likes to gather his knowledge together to form a unified body of information. Not content with theories, the data must be substantial, something on which he can depend and build. He would like to combine it all in a neat package. Often this involves scholastic, historic, or scientific endeavors.

The Negative Pole is -Achievement. The condition here is that the person is complacently resting on his laurels, so to speak. Rather than seeking more knowledge, he is "in neutral, coasting down the road of life" with the momentum of past achievements. The person does not go anywhere in particular in life, but just floats along, accumulating experience in a haphazard fashion. The way to get out of this is to consider and apply the Positive Poles of the other Levels, whichever seems appropriate. Work up some energy and start some new projects.

This Level is the turning point to the bigger and better things in the late Levels. It is the rest stop of the Levels, so to speak, since it is by nature not so demanding as the other Levels. Since it is Neutral, perceptions are less distorted here than at other Levels.

THE FIFTH LEVEL: "EXPLORATION"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Synthesis Process. This Level is a composite of the Acceptance Goal, Power Mode, Greed Feature, Sage Role, Idealist Attitude, and Conceptual Center. Here the person looks for the pattern of his life in the broader context of society. He puts together an image of his experiences into a single picture. He gathers together the pieces of his experiences into a completed unit, and makes it all truly a part of himself, rather than something that has merely happened to him. People at this Level are often on the fringes of society, exploring new territory. Others see this as eccentricity. It gives the person a touch of the dramatic in his life. He may seek publicity or notoriety as part of his desire for broader fields of comprehension.

The Positive Pole is +Expansion. Here the person is finding out if there are any limits to his belief system. The person has broad interests and wants to further widen his intellectual horizons to include everything within his comprehension. He seeks to develop his sphere of understanding and range of awareness to its fullest. The emphasis of his life is to enlarge his mental borders, to press outward for a wider perspective and encompass more territory. Often this involves communication philosophic, artistic, and aesthetic matters and issues.

The Negative Pole is -Adventure. The need for an enlarging experience at this Level, when experienced in this Pole, appears as a tendency to thrive on mere excitement. Such a person is often unusual and offbeat, living on the fringes of normalcy, or on the edge of danger much of the time. There is a tendency for the person to overextend himself, just for the fun or thrill of it. This is not nearly as productive as the Positive Pole. The way to overcome this is to consider and apply the Positive Pole of the Complementary Level, which is +Enterprise. Exercise more judgment and don't indulge in fantasy adventures or pipe dreams.

THE SIXTH LEVEL: "CONSONANCE"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Evolution Process. This Level is the composite of the Growth Goal, Passion Mode, Arrogance Feature, Priest Role, Spiritualist Attitude, and Impressional Center. The theme is intensity, intimacy, and sensitivity. The person's consciousness is elevated to the higher and nobler aspects of life: virtue, excellence, and ethics. This is the most difficult of the Levels to be in, because of the sensitivity of the person and the intensity of his self-awareness.

The Positive Pole is +Harmony. People prefer musical tones that are combined in a way pleasing to the hearing. Likewise, a person in this Pole constantly seeks circumstances that make a melody. If the mood or "vibration" of the situation is not harmonious, they are uncomfortable. They want an intimate attuning with others and with circumstances such as is had by the players of instruments in a symphony orchestra. Another analogy is the movement of dancers in unison. This is not a philosophical or intellectual harmony that is sought so much as it is the nonverbal, non-conceptual, psychological feeling of harmony. There is a desire for transcendent, higher-dimensional orderliness.

The Negative Pole is -Connection. Here the person desires association with others in the quest for intimacy, but is unable to attain it. Many relationships may be formed, but because the vibrations within the self are not as harmonious as they could be, the situation is not completely fulfilling. The members of the band are there together, but they are not playing their parts in consort. The way to overcome this is to consider and apply the Positive Pole of the Complementary First Level, which is +Purpose. Do not be distracted by extraneous noise and maintain a single-minded intention in the desire to achieve harmony.

THE SEVENTH LEVEL: "ACTIVATION"

This Level is the Neutral Aspect of the Origination Process. This Level is the composite of the Dominance Goal, Aggression Mode, Impatience Feature, King Role, Realist Attitude, and Moving Center. Here the person is at the end of the Levels. It is paradoxical that the final Level is an Aspect of the Origination Process which signifies the beginning, the source, and the cause. That this Level is both the beginning and end signifies that it is the composite of all of them. The person gains a complete overview of his life. Everything that happens is understood as a totality and a summary. The person comes to an objective awareness of the meaning of it all. This is the Level where the person is most likely to have a "cosmic consciousness" to be concerned with issues of universal importance and general, wide-ranging significance. This is a breakthrough Level. All lessons learned are finally "driven home".

The Positive Pole is +Inculcation, and in this Pole a person has an insistent urge to master his own workings and experiences. This is an active, energetic, and mobile Level. What is mastered is then impressed upon others. This is often a teaching Level more than a learning Level. The person wants to pass on his experience, to instill or implant it in others. He has arrived at the source, he understands it now, and he wants to impart this awareness to others.

The Negative Pole is -Eclecticism. This Pole is not so outwardly-directed as the Positive Pole, and tends to be more passive. The person gathers and blends experiences, choosing a little here and a little there. There is not the need to master it, teach it, or live it, like there is with the Positive Pole. There is an illegitimate mixing of experiences that does not make a complete thing. The way to overcome this is to consider and apply whichever of the Positive Poles of the other Levels is appropriate to the situation.

THE GENERAL COMMENTS ON THE LEVELS

There is a distinct difference between the three early and the three late Levels. The first three Levels are Aspects of the Negative Processes, and the last three Levels are Aspects of the Positive Processes. People in the three Negative Levels are more orientated to "down to earth" issues and endeavors. The perspective and perceptions here are limited, specific, and focused. People in the three Positive Levels are more oriented to abstract issues and endeavors. The perspective and perceptions here are unlimited, expansive, and general. People at the Neutral Fourth Level are concerned with all these areas equally. The major trend that is evident in the sequence of the Levels is an increase in the degree or range of awareness, with greater self-conscious function.

There is an analogy for the progression through the Levels which will clarify their meaning. The nature of each of the seven Levels could be compared to some of the aspects of each decade of a seventy year lifetime. A lifetime thus recapitulates the meaning of the Levels.

The first decade of a life, childhood, is a time of learning to get around in the world. There is not much understanding of it, so there is a lot of random action as the young person works on many things, gaining experience which only later will be understood.. This activity is similar to the function of the Termination Process at the First Level.

The second decade of a lifetime, the teenage years, is generally spent establishing the foundation for the rest of the life, learning the basic information which will last for the lifetime motor function, language skills, social awareness, and so on. This domesticity is similar to the function of the Involution Process at the Second Level.

The third decade, one's twenties, is often spent in disassociating from family and home, pulling away from parental ties. He establishes his distinct identity and integrity in the world. The person thinks for himself as he exercises his increasing mental capacity. This separation is similar to the function of the Analysis Process at the Third Level.

The fourth decade, one's thirties, is the middle of the life, the dividing decade between youth and old age. It is a transitional time-period when much experience can be assimilated. The person consolidates his resources and prepares for the productive second half of his life. This description is similar to the function of the Assimilation Process at the Fourth Level.

The fifth decade, one's forties, is the time when a person usually begins to perceive the overall meaning and context of his life. He views his life in the perspective of a great deal of experience behind him. A new level of self-awareness opens up in this decade. The person often fantasizes about how life might have been, and his thoughts turn to whether he has fulfilled his dreams or not. This philosophical introspection is similar to the function of the Synthesis Process at the Fifth Level.

In the sixth decade, one's fifties, often times the structures which were built up in previous decades, if they are artificial and not based on True Personality, will crumble in this decade. For many this can be a time of great personal growth and progress. It can be the pinnacle of the lifetime, as the person is at the high point of his career, with so much experience behind him and yet before the decay of old age sets in. This excelling is similar to the function of the Evolution Process at the Sixth Level.

In the seventh decade, the last, the person begins to gather together his estate, and during his retirement he considers the entire scope of his life. He may seek to pass on what he has gained in his life, either in terms of knowledge or possessions. This is similar to the function of the Origination Process at the Seventh Level.

A person in the early Levels is usually very wrapped up, caught up, and immersed in life itself. He is too busy living to be bothered with questioning the meaning of it all and reflecting back on what life is about. A person in the late Levels is more concerned with understanding life in general, and in examining what it all means and where it is all going asking the question, What am I really doing here? People in the late Levels search more consciously for the significance of things, whereas people in the early Levels are less questioning of life experiences. The way perspective changes from early to late Levels is reminiscent of the way a person's perspective shifts over a lifetime. When a person is young, he is unaware of what life is all about, and he is usually intent on just living, too busy to reflect on it very much. He merely experiences life and looks ahead expectantly to more of it in the future. As he matures, he takes time to assess the situation more fully, and to look back on the past and understand it in the light of his greater wisdom. Most people late in life spend a lot of time in thought about their bygone days. So it is in the case of the early and the late Levels.

 

 
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Phil Wittmeyer is a longtime Michael student and scholar of the teachings.  He can be reached at: wittmeyer@hotmail.com

 



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