What is a Step Back?
Imagine your face pressed so tightly against a wall that your lips are kissing it. Yuck. Not only does it taste bad, but you can’t see much, can you? What building is this anyway? Is it an office building, a sky scraper, your home, a wall around a garden? When you’re that close you can’t tell. To find out, take a step back. So, it’s an office building. Can you tell how tall it is from one meter back? No, then step back again. From a block away, you can tell that it’s really tall, maybe 50 stories, but it’s only when you’re three blocks away that you can tell, and a mile away you can see the fuller context of the skyline of the city. Physically when we step back from something that’s right in our face, we are able to see more of it. We’re able to get the big picture and we’re able to see the context.
As this is true of actual perception, it is even more true of our mental, emotional, and conceptual perceptions. When we step back, we obtain a broader, larger, and more expansive view of things. We rise up in our mind to gain a larger vista.
This is what we call the Step Back or the Step Up. When we step back from a thought, a feeling, an awareness, a physiological response, a language expression, a behavior, or an experience, we are then enabled to think-feel-and-respond to it, about it, and in relationship to it. This is what we mean by the term meta. "Going meta" to one state creates a meta-relationship to it. It is in this way that we create meta-states, meta-frames, and psycho-logical levels.1
When we step back or up into a meta-awareness, we use our reflexivity, our self-reflexive consciousness, which is the most unique facet of our consciousness. This allows us to transcend our own thinking, feeling, and responding. It enables us to move to a meta-relationship to our previous experiencing and include it within a higher level context. This is the structure of language, context reframing, mind-lines, hypnosis, persuasion, human reasoning, and the Matrix of our minds."