Ouspensky describes in his book In Search of the Miraculous four states of consciousness. These are:
1. Sleep (nightly sleep)
2. Waking state (One’s normal state – walking about)
3. Self Remembering, or Subjective Consciousness
4. Objective Consciousness
These higher states (3 & 4) can be acquired through work on oneself, and in fact the third state (self remembering) is our right – we can have it by making efforts right now. The difficulty is the illusion that we already have access to this state. In fact it is possible momentarily – but the slightest distraction and we fall back to waking state. The question is then, how to remain awake to the higher state?
Through making efforts of Self Observation, and by studying the principles of Fourth Way psychology, it is possible to begin to free oneself from the sludge of ordinariness.
Group work is the key to making right effort in the direction of self remembering. Working with others of like mind can help to accelerate one’s own efforts, which usually fade after a short time when working alone.