How to Become an Expert


There will always be more people in grade school than grad school…

And grade school is always a prerequisite.


Last time we discussed traditional personal and spiritual development and how there are potentially different stages we go through as we evolve. To this end I used the metaphor of grade school in the beginning versus grad school as we evolve (reference Innate Ability Development 1). Let’s continue…

Those who are wise, and have at least tasted what they believe to be grad school, will never disrespect grade school students but rather see only earlier versions of themselves. Are you following the metaphor?

In reality, who can state with certainty what it means to truly be in the “grad school of Life?” Certainly not me. In an Infinite Universe it’s entirely possible that what we at one point think to be quite advanced… is actually barely getting started in the grand scheme of things.

Most of us tend to believe that to be “an expert” in a chosen field we have to know all there is to know (or at least a lot) about a particular topic. I submit this is incorrect, for none of us truly knows much of anything. Even the most adroit and seminal theoretical physicist in today’s world can’t say anything with certainty—they only speak of “probabilities.” And even these great minds if not careful have a hard time letting go of what they once thought as the most likely probability. A little research on Einstein’s resistance and complete disdain of quantum theory will prove this point quite nicely.

“God does not roll dice!” ~ Albert Einstein’s response to quantum theory

I suggest a different definition of an expert. Possibly to be considered “an expert” (if there is such a thing) is to first and foremost know the most about the pitfalls and traps that we can fall into; as well as the mistakes that can be made in a particular field; and then to know the best ways to avoid them. Secondly to also, through personal experience and observation, know some of the probabilities in that field; and finally, to hold those probabilities quite loosely. Please read that again.

If that definition is a possibility, then how does an expert become an expert? While some masters in any field can give guidance and direction… the greatest mastery comes from actually falling in the traps, making the “mistakes,” and learning how to make adjustments ongoing. Do you follow?

Out of suffering have emerged the strongest of souls:

the most massive characters are seared with scars.

~ Kahlil Gibran

Coming full circle, in my experience, one of the greatest traps and pitfalls is the arrogance that states, “You better get busy… because I’m way more advanced than you are!” How do I know about that mistake? Only because I’ve been there and done that one—I have the tee shirt and the scars to prove it. Unlike many… my foibles and scars have been paraded boldly in front of the world.

Scars are tattoos with better stories attached

As we grow and truly evolve we realize that we must “transcend yet include” the previous stage. Respecting it for what it has taught us and where it has brought us. Simultaneously we must respect those who are still immersed in our previous stage and realize that we’re all moving in the same direction whether consciously aware of it or not.

Again, grad school is relative. We’re all in pre-school at some level of measure and from some perspective. Think about it.

If you’ve been reading along over the last several months, you probably realize by now that I’m speaking about, writing about, and advocating many things that are not traditionally propagated in the mass personal and spiritual development industry.

For instance, I was once considered an “expert” in the ever ubiquitous “Law of Attraction.” When my life went sideways by all external appearances I took a flogging in the media and of course the ever so loving world of the internet.

Accusations ranged from “he must have known nothing about the LOA or this wouldn’t be happening” to “he was a fraud” to “how did you attract this into your life James?” Of course slim to none (if any) were truly curious… rather, out of their own fear and pain, quite defensive and accusatory. I understand. Really I do. It took a while… but I eventually leveraged my own pain into clarity.

You see, if one of the so-called “experts” was having difficulty then “something had to be wrong!” Right? Wrong. This outrage and these accusations were nothing more than an outcropping and effect of a larger cause and grander illusion. And the cause was our much discussed traditional and romantic fantasy-filled mindset that we’ve invested much time exploring (reference Innate Ability Development 1; and Alchemy series).

In other words, “If I become an expert, or achieve a certain level, I won’t have any accidents or life challenges or difficulties of magnitude anymore.” Been there done that have the tee and scars on that one too. Over it.

To this end, I’d like to suggest that I’ve moved on. I believe I’ve taken a step forward. At least it feels that way to me. It feels really honest and raw and real. Actually it feels totally awake and alive. It’s possible that you’ve taken the step too or you wouldn’t be here. Or maybe you haven’t quite taken the next step but you feel that nagging little splinter in the back of your mind telling you the traditional means are not working any longer. Often nothing fails today like yesterday’s success.

If any of these are the case… take heart. Get excited. In my experience you’re about to make a quantum leap and move forward in Life. Real Life. But to do this you must let go of the fantasy. You must find yourself so completely disillusioned with the old ways—again not disrespectful—just disillusioned. There’s a difference. Do you get that?

Life experience tells us that we tend to chase technique, secret and savior until we realize there are none… and then we potentially step on the path to true salvation. Please ponder that deeply. Again, not to suggest in any way that techniques, theories and teachers have no value—sometimes they can be invaluable. But none of them are saviors. None of them are a panacea. None of them bring a life that’s all rainbows and roses.

What have I moved on to? I’m going to tell you; and I’m going to suggest that you allow me to coin a new term that’s a step beyond traditional personal and spiritual development… or at least a more refined version at minimum. Furthermore I suggest that it will bring you greater meaning and fulfillment and the probability of much greater results than you can ever imagine. Irrespective of whether you intend to build a business, or just plain build a life I believe this to be true.

Please remember, life is not meant to be easy… but it is meant to be meaningful.

Want to learn how Leaders Win the Battle of Meaning Over Materialism? Click here to read more.

Don’t worry, I’ll explain it. Possibly it’ll resonate with you and where you are. Maybe not.

Either way I honor you and respect you for where you are in your current life journey. As I’ve stated many times all roads lead to the proverbial Rome.

Stay awake and Love Life,

james arthur ray