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The Fifteen Major Tests Of The Spiritual

by Dr. Joshua David Stone Monday, Jul. 06, 2009 at 4:52 PM

A Course In Miracles states that there is only one problem in life, and that is separation from God. In truth, we have never been or will ever be separate. This is illusion.

One day while talking to my dear friend, Ben, I came up with an incredible idea to attain Self-realization. If you master these fifteen major tests, the core of your battle will be mastered. The tests are:


The first major spiritual test for every Lightworker is the issue of power. The lesson here is either not owning it enough, or when you get it, letting it go to your head. Personal power is the fundamental first key to psychological health and spiritual growth. The ideal is to own it all the time in a considerate manner…never wavering. It is through owning your personal power that Self-mastery over your energies takes place. You either own your power or give it to other people and/or your subconscious mind, negative ego, inner child, thoughts, emotions, desires and physical body.

On the other side of the coin, one must have power but not to the repression of the yin aspect of one's self. There must be proper balance between the masculine and feminine sides. They must work together as in a beautiful dance. The real test of power comes when a person moves into leadership. Do they use their power in service totally of the Christ Consciousness and love, or does it become a manipulated power by the negative ego to control others? In essence, does the power over others go to their head? It is how many spiritual teachers, gurus, channels and psychics fail this first most fundamental test. One test is to see if you treat people exactly the same as you did before you got the power.


The next test is dealing with money. How do you look at people who do not have any money? Do you judge or love them as you would God and the Ascended Masters? If you don't, then negative ego's interpretation of money has a hold on you.

God wants every person to have an abundant amount of money. Being poor is a product of negative ego, poverty consciousness programming. There is no judgment in being poor, but God would like everyone to be millionaires. The reason why is so all His millionaires can give their money and lives to help those in need. What does having a lot of money do to your personality? How does this dovetail with the issue of power? You will pass or fail on the spiritual path with such issues.

I would like to share a personal story that really brought this home to me. I went through a lesson recently where I was potentially being ripped off for an extremely large amount of money. This came as a total shock. I had worked incredibly hard to develop this certain project, and I was looking at losing everything that could ultimately be as much as hundreds of thousands of dollars. After recovering from a state of shock, I went through all possible reactions. It took me a little while, but I got myself to a rather divine indifferent attitude about the whole situation. I let go of my attachment and discussed the matter extensively with the Masters. If I had to sue this person, I would. Ultimately, however, I really just surrendered the situation into God's and the Master's hands and put my service work and the Divine Plan first, over the money. My feeling was, as long as God takes care of me, even though I may get ripped off in one place, God will make it up to me in another. I was actually surprised at my level of detachment over such a big lesson.

About three days later, I had a dream where I was walking on this path, kind of like in a fairy tale, when I came to a metal platform where there was a deep cavern below me. I became aware in the dream that this cavern was an oracle as in the Oracle of Delphi. All of a sudden I heard a voice, "This is the anointed one the world has been waiting for." In the dream I was really taken aback by such an amazing statement. I was then guided to step off the platform, and before me was a table. I had to pick one item, kind of like the child who was the Dalai Lama had to pick to make sure he was the true Dalai Lama.

It turned out the object I picked was the right one. I then found myself walking with this very lovely woman and was aware I had chosen God over money and material concerns. This dream had a very profound effect on me. When I woke up, I immediately had an association to this real life situation where I had let go of my attachment to money. I know for a fact the dream was reflecting this on some level. It is easy to forget that every-thing that happens in life is a spiritual test.


The next test is the issue of fame. The three great tests of power, money and fame are all very interconnected. The question is what happens to the personality when fame and worldly recognition is achieved? How does this change the personality? Does one start treating others differently, like lower class citizens? Does fame go to one's head and inflate one's ego? How does one use fame - for self-glory or to be of greater service?

The problem is most people who move into fame and worldly recognition are not equipped psychologically to deal with it. This applies to both Earthly personages and a great many of the spiritual leaders. They often are highly developed spiritually or psychically but not as developed psychologically in terms of having control over the negative ego, inner child, desire body, emotional body and the like. The key with all these tests is to remain exactly the same as you were before power, money, and fame were achieved.


To achieve Self-realization, happiness, inner peace, success, happy relationships, and God-realization, all attachments and addictions must be let go of. As Buddha said, "All suffering comes from attachment." It is amazing the things we get attached to. All negative emotions and failed relationships can be traced to attachment. To pass the fourth initiation, one must become a "renunciate," which means living in this world but not of this world. One must learn to have super-strong preferences in life but not attachments. The nature of preferences is, you go after them with all your heart, soul, mind and might, but if you don't get them, you are still happy.

Whatever you are attached or addicted to, no matter what it is be it people, material things, future events, sex, money, ad infinitum change these things to preferences. Some go too far in the other direction and become totally detached. This is not good, for they are not involved in life. It is important to have a total passion for life and for all your goals, preferences and priorities, but the key is to be happy and have inner peace regardless of what happens, instead of fighting life.


The fifth test deals with sexuality. Are you the master of your sexuality or is it the master of you? Does the flow of your sexuality serve the lower self or Higher Self? Who comes first, God or sexuality? Are you moderate in your sexual practices? Does your sexuality serve love and intimacy or just materialistic animal pleasure? Does your sexuality serve just a selfish purpose, or a selfless purpose? Is your sexuality being used also for the raising of your kundalini and brain illumination or just for a second chakra release?

These are all key questions Lightworkers need to ask themselves with devastating honesty. There is no judgment if it is being slightly misused. As you become aware of this, just make the appropriate adjustment and spiritual vow to correct the imbalance. Life is nothing more than making continual adjustments and attitudinal and physical corrections to bring oneself constantly back to inner peace and the appropriate Tao. Mistakes are not bad; only uncorrected conscious mistakes become a problem. The idea is to learn by grace instead of karma; to learn easily instead of by the school of hard knocks.

Sexuality is a wonderful thing and was created by God to be enjoyed as a com-munication device in service of love. Sexuality is not bad. It becomes negative when it is used by the lower, or carnal self, or negative ego. Use it in service of the Higher Self, and love, and it becomes a most sacred consecration.


The next test is the transcendence of desire. This is the main precept of all Eastern teachings. What is meant by this is one must transcend lower self desire, to attain Higher Self desire. Many Lightworkers, being confused on this point, try to block all desire which is not appropriate or good. It is good to have a desire to ascend, or a desire to achieve liberation, or be of service. Even Melchizedek and the inner plane Ascended Masters continue to strive for greater and greater levels of spiritual growth. Transform lower self desire into desire for God-realization. This is the ticket to Paradise!


The definition of anger is, "A lack of control and attempt to regain it." The misuse of anger deals with misuse of power. The late, great Edgar Cayce, in his source channelings, spoke of positive anger versus negative anger. Everyone needs what might be called positive anger. This is like being the spiritual warrior in life or manifesting tough love with self or others when needed. Anger in essence is ego. Instead of getting rid of anger, it should be channeled properly, for there is enormous power in anger. This is what is meant by positive anger. It is anger channeled in Christ Consciousness directions.

People who are angry all the time are demonstrating lack of true personal power and consistent Self-mastery. Anger creates separation. The purpose of life is to retain oneness at all times, not separation. Cultivate personal power, a spiritual warrior attitude, and toughness in life but not anger. Anger stems from attachment and not looking at things as lessons in life.

When things bother you in your relationships, most definitely share them, but do so in a loving and respectful manner. Anger without unconditional love is negative anger. There is no such thing as righteous anger as it is a delusion of the negative ego. Anger is such a critical lesson in life, for it comes up every time life doesn't go the way we desire. The anger is developing, as Buddha said, from "Wrong points of view." It is not in life, it is in our attitude towards life. Someone who is angry all the time is angry because they are fighting life instead of working with life and learning from life.

When one moves into positions of power, fame and money, the proper control of this energy is even more important, for a great many people are in your spiritual care. When anger arises, channel it into cleaning your house, exercising, transformative journal writing, meditating. Use the enormous power in anger as an alchemical process to create God-realization. Do not judge when anger arises, but take responsibility that you are creating it. Do not take it out on others or self, or karma will be incurred!

Transcending Fear

This lesson should have been first on the list. If there had to be one word that describes negative ego it is fear, and love is one word that describes the Christ Consciousness. There are, in truth, only two emotions in life: love and fear. All other positive and negative emotions, at their core, have these as their basis. To understand fear is to see it as projected attack. When we attack others, we live in fear by the Law of Karma operating in our own mind. This is why the Course In Miracles says to give up all your attack thoughts. Probably the greatest test of the spiritual path is to learn to release all core fear and replace it with core love. When you have released fear, you have released and transcended negative ego consciousness. The releasing is also tied to having faith in God and Self.

A Course In Miracles says there are no neutral thoughts. All thoughts are either fear based or love based. This is why it is of the utmost importance to deny all thoughts not of God to enter your mind. It is also why it is so important to affirm and visualize only thoughts of God and the Christ Consciousness in your mind.

No lesson on the spiritual path is more important than transcending negative ego consciousness and replacing it with the Christ Consciousness! The transcending of fear is the great spiritual work of the spiritual path!


Transcending of selfishness and self-centeredness. It is amazing how some spiritual teachers and very high level initiates still see life through the lens of selfishness. This stems from high level development in spiritual things, but weak development on the psycho-logical level. They often have not learned to parent their inner child properly. When one allows oneself to be run by the inner child, they are going to be very selfish, as all children are by definition. This also stems from not ever being trained in the difference between negative ego thinking and Christ thinking.

We all must learn to see the bigger picture. We must learn to wear the moccasins of our brothers and sisters; to embrace the opposite of selfishness which is selflessness and helping others. The quality of total and complete selflessness is the sign of the true spiritual Master. This doesn't mean that, at times, the true spiritual Master isn't spiritually selfish. The key principle is that they are spiritually selfish, not negative egotistically selfish. This may come into play in terms of having proper boundaries, or the need to be impersonally loving at times, or just taking care of the physical body so one doesn't burn oneself out in doing service work. The true spiritual Master's consciousness sees everything out of the group body and not the lens of just the inner child, negative ego and physical body.

False Pride

The lesson here can be summed up in the biblical statement, "After pride cometh the fall." This is one of the great tests that comes with power, fame, and money. Will the ego become inflated? Will the personality fill itself with self-aggrandizement and self-glorification? It is, in my opinion, the number one cause of all fallen Lightworkers. It is something every Lightworker must be constantly vigilant against. What we are dealing with here is really the superiority and inferiority complex. Fritz Pearls coined this, "The Topdog-Underdog Complex."

The other side of false pride is what I call negative humility. More Lightworkers are caught up in the bottom side of the negative ego than the top side. This is inferiority complex, low self-esteem, lack of self worth, poor self concept, feeling undeserving. It is as much an illusion as false pride is. Both the superiority and inferiority must be transcended to release oneself from the negative ego's grasp.


Instead of being satisfied with our puzzle piece God has for us, the negative ego quality of greed would have us try to acquire other people's pieces in God's Plan. This can be in relationship to money, but, in truth, goes beyond money or material things. It can be greed for power, fame, spiritual things even greed for spiritual growth. The negative ego and spoiled inner child always wants.

Instead of focusing on what one can give, the negative ego focuses on what it can get. It can apply to spiritual information, trying to greedily save it for self and not share it with others. It usually connects with competition, jealousy and envy. In truth, that which we greedily hold onto we will ultimately lose. In truth, we retain only that which we give away. This is the law of life!

Transcending Duality

Transcending duality is one of the least understood concepts of the spiritual path and goes far beyond just transcending the topdog-underdog complex. Transcending duality applies to all aspects of life. The key here is to see that third and fourth dimensional consciousness focuses on duality and polarity.

In learning to transcend duality, we don't have to be tossed around on a continual roller coaster of emotional highs and lows. There is a way of thinking called the Christ Consciousness that allows one to be unceasingly the same; always in your power, loving, happy, always even-minded, equanimous, always in joy, always in inner peace, forgiving, and unchanging regardless of the fluctuation of the dualities of life. This is the consciousness of the God Self. This allows you to remain the same no matter if people praise or vilify you.

This is possible because the negative ego does not become engaged. The storms and fluctuations of outer life do not affect the stability and evenmindedness of your thinking process. It is not what is going on outside which should be your concern but, rather, our attitude towards what is going on inside of life. One person can lose a million dollars and jump out the window of a building. This is the power of one simple thought. Are you optimistic or pessimistic? Do you see the donut or the hole?

Everything in life is perception, interpretation and your belief system. The whole purpose of this writing is nothing more than a course in attitudinal healing, to create a pole shift or shift in your thinking from fear-based thought and emotions to love-based thoughts and emotions. Your salvation is up to you, not God. God has given you everything from the beginning. The question is, will you give yourself salvation by releasing negative ego completely and by fully embracing the Christ Consciousness?


Jealousy stems from insecurity and attachment and, hence, the need to compete with others instead of cooperate. It is connected also with the negative ego quality of envy. We have all heard the term "green with envy." It is very much connected with greed and selfishness. The main point is to be connected to group consciousness and one's identity with all creation. One's true identity is the Eternal Self, not the physical body and personality. In realizing this truth, every happiness and benefit another achieves is your happiness. Every suffering of another is your suffering and vice versa.


Djwhal Khul guided me to add the negative ego quality of having too much vanity. There is nothing wrong in life with taking care of one's physical body and wanting to look nice and attractive. However, is this desire to present an attractive appearance governed by the soul or the negative ego? Truly examine your deepest motivations and intent in this regard. It is important to have good grooming habits, be clean, present a nice appearance, and to wear appropriate clothes. Are you doing it to stand out and be better than others? Are you doing it as a seduction of some kind? Do you spend too much time looking in the mirror and too much time in the bathroom over vain pursuits? Some people don't spend enough time on these matters, and others spend too much time. They are both mistakes of omission and commission. Be moderate in this regard. Be clear on what you are trying to present.


The final major test is that of egotism. Egotism goes beyond even pride to really encompass all negative ego qualities and emotions. There really is only one problem in life for all incarnated and non-incarnated souls, and that is egotism. There is only one answer to all the problems of humanity, and that is the Christ/Buddha Consciousness. This is why Sai Baba states that the definition of God is, "God equals man minus ego." If you want to realize God, you must transcend your negative ego with all its negative attributes, qualities and emotions.

Your ego is the source of all the spiritual tests. It is the source of all separation, fear and selfishness. It is the source of all disease. It is the premiere lesson every soul must learn. The key to inner peace is to deny every thought that is not of God, or is of the negative ego, to enter your mind. Affirm and place your attention on every thought and emotion that is of God and is of the Christ/Buddha Consciousness. It is through this practice of attitudinal healing that your subconscious mind and conscious thinking will be reprogrammed and form a new habit. Your subconscious mind is as happy to be programmed with the Christ/Buddha Consciousness as it is the negative ego consciousness. It doesn't care, because it has no reasoning. It is your job, as the conscious mind, to reprogram your subconscious mind in this manner.

A Course In Miracles states that there is only one problem in life, and that is separation from God. In truth, we have never been or will ever be separate. This is illusion. The law of the mind is that whatever we think is the reality we live in. The world is living in a mass negative hypnosis of separation that does not exist in reality. As A Course In Miracles says, "The fall never happened, we just think it did." This is the great law of life. In this moment, wake-up from the bad dream and nightmare you have lived for many lifetimes and realize the truth that passeth all understanding. "Nothing real can be threatened, nothing unreal exists. Herein lies the peace of God." (Introduction to A Course In Miracles page 257)


Dr. Joshua David Stone has a Ph.D. in transpersonal psychology and is also a licensed marriage, family and child counselor in Los Angeles, Ca. On a spiritual level he anchors what is called the “Melchizedek Synthesis Light Academy & Ashram”, which is an integrated inner and outer plane ashram representing all paths to GOD.

In Light Times... A Metaphysical, Spiritual, Holistic Publication

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