Power Vs Force by David Hawkins
Sit down and Read
One Line Summary
Discover the secrets of the universe and enlightenment with just your left arm
David Hawkins is a PhD who claims to have developed a map of human consciousness using Kinesiology. He believes that stored within the human body is Universal Truth. When in the presence of truth, the human body remains strong. When in the presence of something false, the body goes weak. So by asking someone a question while pushing down on their outstretched arm, he is able to tell if the statement is “true” or “false” based on the bodies reaction.
Totally weird. If that doesn’t make any sense to you, that’s fine. There’s really only a couple things you actually need to get from reading this
Why it’s Awesome
The most important part is the distinction between using Power and Force. I think of it as the difference between using higher human ideals (such as love, compassion, freedom, gratitude) to get what you want versus using lower human ideals anger, jealousy, spite). Hawkins explains that when the two collide, the use of higher ideals will always win out over lower ideals. This is how Gandhi was able to take down the British Empire when he had nothing. Gandhi used Power, the British Empire used Force.
This is a pattern I’ve found consistent throughout most of my life. The more you try to force people to do things, the more often they eventually resist. Repress sexuality and people will just want to fuck more. Try to make people like you and it will only come across as low status.
They often say spiritual circles that high vibration energy only attracts high vibration energy and low vibration energy only attracts low vibration energy. There’s definitely something to that. When you’re pissed off, the last thing you want to do is think about compassion. You want to listen to other people who are pissed off. When you try and cheat people, usually it blows up and all you get is pain and misery yourself. It’s another way of talking about The Law of Attraction.
The way Hawkins describes it, Power is essentially high vibration energy and Force is essentially low vibration energy. Which is why Power almost always wins.
What’s really interesting about this book though is that Hawkins map of human consciousness is very similar as described by Spiral Dynamics and Abraham Maslow. You start off with extremely petty desires which are pure survival instinct, reacting to the world around you. Then you start to care about respect of other people and learning to shape your world around your desires. Finally you move into unconditional love and joy for life and others.
Human beings don’t just individually move through this process. If you read history, you can see that it almost seems like the collective human consciousness is moving through this map. We’ve left behind pure survival instincts of living in tribes and care about higher ideals now.
The entire map can be found here.
Why Does It Suck
Hawkins came up with these ideas through a process called Kinesiology. He has a person stick out there arm and then asks a yes or no question. If he can push down on their arm without resistance, the answer is no. If the arm puts up resistance, the answer is yes. This is because the universe is speaking to him. What the fuck?
Look, I’m not against the idea of some guiding, universal higher power. But come on man. Hawkins is the same guy who calls academics “arrogant” because they claim to have all the answers. Yet he just claimed to have solved every universal question by pushing down on an arm. Really?
Another thing that frustrated me was his use of jargon. Half the time I was reading this book I was simply struggling to figure out what the hell he was saying.
The Wrap Up
There’s a lot of shit in this book that makes no sense. There’s also a lot of vague spiritual claims. But the parts that I do like in this book are so good that I’m willing to look past all that. Read it, but consider skipping the first four chapters. You can always come back it if you like what he is saying.
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