4Fold Path Map
The 4Fold Path map is an overview of what constitutes the human condition, illustrating compass points of personhood and unfolding sequences for soul work. It’s a template for what’s involved in our life journey towards personal integrity and wholeness, given that we live in two worlds: the finite, concrete, chronos dimension of our outer lives (horizontal axis on the map) and the infinite, intangible, kairos dimension of inner life (vertical axis). The balancing act of being human means having a foot in both worlds (matter/spirit) while holding our centre at the crossroads, where the perspectives of spirit, soul, ego and psyche intersect in any life circumstances. The map serves as a template for anyone exploring or facilitating psychospiritual growth, with InnerView guides and initiates discovering what the soul wants in unfolding parallel phases on four different levels.
Compass Points of Personhood
SPIRIT is the transcendent, boundless dimension of the unmanifest infinite Self. It’s the fullness of life in its formless state.
SOUL is how the spirit takes form and shape. It’s the substance and quality of everything that’s grounded in lived experience.
EGO is the functional self that manages our day-to-day activities in a managerial way with its many life tasks to accomplish.
PSYCHE is the transpersonal, inclusive self of the collective unconscious, informed by symbols, archetypes, myths and rituals.
Elements of the 4Fold Process
The overarching fourfold sequence for the InnerView guide to follow is witness – presence - essence - guidance. One element leads to the next, yet the phases are actually more like the convergence of a 4-way intersection than consecutive steps. The four foundations of soul unfoldment are presented in a parallel process with other four step phases (see map below) for the progressive attunement of clients. The basic CARE framework contains the other sequences. The CARE model draws upon generic phases of clinical intervention yet directs attention towards positive attitudes and qualities. The CARE acronym stands for Connect & contain (your challenge is human and manageable) - Assess & affirm (you’ve got what it takes to get through this) - Reframe & reorient (you are not defined by your life situation) - Encourage & empower (keep going, one step at a time).
Witness is the spacious awareness we bring to the blow-by-blow embroilment of life dramas. It involves the capacity to sit back and take a dispassionate, observer’s view, like watching a movie. Witnessing is fostered through mindfulness and meditative practices and instills the equanimity of ‘seeing the big picture.’ It also allows for a clearer view of the person behind the problem.
Presence dissolves the duality between self and other such that we can hold the space for our common humanity without judgment. With power differentials diminished by simple presence, needful healing can emerge which has an energy of its own.
Essence is otherwise known as the ‘true self’ or ‘point vierge’ - who we would be without mind, memory, or association; our unconditioned, unconstructed identity. It allows us a backstage pass to the value and worth of a person in and of themselves, aside from any ego strategies used to achieve significance and belonging. Our original nature, without shame.
Guidance is divining where a particular life situation meets the potential evolution of a person and becomes their growing edge. Whenever there’s a sense of suffering happening for a person, rather than to a person, guidance will emerge. The ‘flip side’ of a problem is revealed as an opportunity for self-compassion and soul growth.
“It is important that there be teamwork between spiritual guides and psychological professionals. If we are talking about the health of a human being, we are not just talking about the body or even the emotions; we are talking about the whole range of human potential including spiritual health. These all have to be treated at once if we want to get well.”
4Fold Path Compass
We used to play with paper fortune tellers during recess in primary school. They are a form of origami used to unfold a ‘secret message’ though the choices of numbers and colours. Now that the fortune teller has been adapted to the 4Fold Path, it has found a new future!