The 3 Stages of Spiritual Growth: Why too Many People Stop at Stage 1

The development of the human spirit has three stages. This development begins with sepatazed ego, “me” and ends in the free space of Consciousness.

Stage 1: Ego - The Unconscious Patterns of the Mind.

The Ego is the central figure of our personal history, based upon the past and looking into the future.

The components of the Ego are thoughts, emotions, memories (with which the person identifies as “my story”), fixed unconscious roles and collective identifications (nationality, religion, etc.). Most people completely identify with these components of the Ego, and for them no self “outside” of this exists.

Our identification with the Ego makes us therefore somebody, a personality. Since around us everybody considers the Ego as the most important centre of their life, we are also brought up by our parents to have a powerful Ego, a centrepoint in our life, by the time we reach adulthood.

  • That is why we always watch the other people, we compare and measure ourselves to them.
  • All that time, we also try to adjust our actions and deeds to the expectations and opinions of others.
  • We keep dealing with the past and the future, and we never have sufficient time to stop and notice the immense illusion behind our life.

On the other hand, our identification with the Ego will be the root of all our problems and misery.

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Stage 2: Alertness - Gate to Infinity.

The gateway leading us to the deeper dimensions of Life is Alertness, which appears as a result of the release of our attention from the hypnotic state of listening to our personal story. The new Alertness enables us to learn about ourselves without identifying with our thoughts and emotions.

What we first experience in this new, alert state beyond our thoughts and emotions is the completeness of existence.

In that state all fragmentation disappears from our life, we recognize the inner spaciousness of our existence, our inner happiness and tranqulity


We feel at home in our own skin, and we realize that our alert consciousness is free from all kinds of thoughts and emotions. We then may decide whether we wish to continue to listen to our personal story, or we move further on, towards the quiet foundations of our existence.

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Stage 3: Consciousness - Your Spiritual Home.

The disappearance of thoughts leaves a gateway open for us towards experiencing real truth. Together with the thoughts, the Ego, the self also disappears, and the truth of I am shines out bright.

  • Everything will be quiet and peaceful in us.
  • We are beyond all good and evil, we are a mere Consciousness that does not analyze or judge, only contemplates.
  • We realize that the same contemplating soul lives in everybody, so the differences between human beings are only superficial, and deep inside we are all the same.

Experiencing that unity will bring us the ecstasy of Life, the perfect joy of Existence.

Reposted with permission. Frank M. Wanderer Ph.D is a professor of psychology, a consciousness researcher and writer.

This article was reposted from one of his newest books which you can find here. With a lifelong interest in the mystery of human existence, Frank’s work is to help others wake up from identification with our personal history and the illusory world of the forms and shapes, and to find our identity in what he calls “the Miracle”, the mystery of the Consciousness.