Basic Trust is the foundational principle for inner peace, healthy relationships, but most of all, it’s the foundation of emotional stability. It is literally the “holy grail” of happiness.
Basic Trust is the real “chicken soup of the soul,” the key to overcoming loneliness, worry, anxiety, depression and just about anything else that ails you. It’s “spiritual medicine,” and one “dose” of it would put the pharmaceutical industry out of business.
The 4th chapter of A.H. Almaas’ book, Facets of Unity, is called “Basic Trust.” The chapter is so powerful that the rest of this blog is simply an edited reprint of it. (The book itself is very complex, and for most, unnecessary to read, but the 4th chapter is absolute gold.)
If you open your heart to its message, you will sleep better, you will stay centered and grounded no matter what happens, and you will experience authentic intimacy. I’m not exaggerating. Read on and see for yourself.
“Basic Trust is a non-conceptual, implicit trust or confidence that what is optimal will happen, the sense that whatever happens will ultimately be fine. It is the confidence that reality is ultimately good; that nature, the universe, and all that exists are of their very nature trustworthy.
Basic Trust is experienced as an unquestioned sense of safety and security that informs, or is intrinsic to, the way you act and live. It is so basic that events and circumstances in your life cannot disrupt it.
For this reason, Basic Trust is different from our usual psychological sense of trust. What we could call ordinary trust or confidence is highly conditional and dependent on people and conditions. When painful experiences or personal betrayals occur, it disrupts ordinary trust. So ordinary trust is of little value for daily life because those elements are always subject to change.
Basic Trust, on the other hand, is not a trust in some thing, some person, or some situation, and so is not readily diminished by life circumstances. Instead, it gives you an implicit orientation toward all circumstances that allows you to relax and be with them.
You feel in your bones that you are and will be okay, even if the events at the moment are disappointing or painful or even completely disastrous.
Consequently, you live your life in such a way that you naturally jump into the unknown without even thinking about whether or not you will be okay, since you have the implicit sense that the universe will take care of you.
Your life itself becomes a spiritual journey in which you know that if you stop trying, stop efforting, stop grasping, stop holding on to people, objects and beliefs, things will be okay, that they will turn out for the best.
This doesn’t mean that letting go will necessarily feel good or that you’ll get what you want—that’s not what you trust. Even if it doesn’t feel good or go your way, even if you are frightened, you somehow know that whatever happens will be okay.
The Presence or Absence of Basic Trust
Most people have ordinary or condition-based trust; they feel it’s okay to trust in some situations and not in others. Certain conditions have to be met in order for them to trust. This is not an inherent trust in life. This is conditional trust.
Basic Trust gives us the capacity to let go, the capacity to open our hearts and be with whatever is occurring. With it, you don’t need assurances that things are going to be okay because you implicitly know things are okay and will be okay.
The presence of Basic Trust indicates that you have the innate sense that life is fundamentally benevolent, and that this benevolence exists independent of you and your actions. The relative presence or absence of Basic Trust is a belly quality; something one’s whole being is either grounded in or not.
Basic Trust and The Enneagram
The disturbance of Basic Trust is a significant factor in ego development because the perspective of ego is diametrically opposed to the sense of Basic Trust. The ego’s perspective (your Enneagram type’s perspective) arises out of a lack of this trust. It is based on distrust, on paranoia, on fear, on the conviction that you’re not going to be adequately taken care of in the ways you need.
This conviction causes you to believe that you have to engage in all kinds of manipulations and games to get your needs met and to make things work out. The lack of Basic Trust fuels your Enneagram type.
If you don’t have Basic Trust, you won’t let yourself just be present; you’ll be tense and contracted (below the line). So Basic Trust is needed for you to be able to transcend your Enneagram type’s beliefs, habits and patterns, and also for you to be willing to just BE, without reacting, striving, seeking, needing and wanting.
Basic Trust is the bedrock of the process of spiritual development, but it also affects the quality of the whole of our lives. It gives the sense that our lives are evolving naturally, moving and progressing in ways and directions that we may not yet know or understand, but that we feel confident will be okay.
If Basic Trust is present, our lives have a sense of freedom. If the desire to know where things are going arises, it comes not out of wanting to control the unfoldment, but out of simple, unattached curiosity.
Basic Trust and Relationships
When you are grounded in Basic Trust you are open, courageous and authentic. You don’t worry about rejection or fear it, you take risks and have healthy confidence, not because you trust in yourself, but because you trust that whatever happens will be perfect. Without much Basic Trust, you are paralyzed with fear of failure and fear of rejection.
If you’re looking for a mate, Basic Trust means taking the risk of talking to someone you’re attracted to. You may be a little frightened, but the fear is not a big deal and you act anyway. If he or she rejects you, so what? You feel resilient. After all, there are millions of people in the world. But without Basic Trust, rejection can feel like the end of the world.
When your Basic Trust deepens, you have an inner sense of relaxation that allows your soul to unfold spontaneously and naturally. This trust affects your mind in such a way that you begin to see that whatever happens is right—even if it’s painful, and that it’s all supporting your evolution.
If you don’t have this trust, you are constantly scared, constantly tense, constantly fighting reality—inner and outer. So we need to reclaim our Basic Trust.
Basic Trust and Peace
Basic Trust, then, is synonymous with, and is the pathway to, inner peace. It means your soul is settled and not struggling. We struggle because we don’t trust that reality, as it is, is fundamentally fine and will work for us and support us without any interference on our part.
Basic Trust is learning that life is manageable, is workable; that we can relax into it and just let it be. It is the trust that the universe itself supports us and that we have the inner resources to deal with whatever life presents us.
So Basic Trust means to let your mind stop, to be silent within, knowing that if there is something you need to know, the knowing will come. It means that if you need to do something, you will be able to do it. It means accepting and trusting the silence, the stillness, the Being-ness.
If we don’t trust, we can’t let our minds be silent and we can’t let ourselves be still. We think we always have to be on the go, always making one thing or another happen or not happen, so we don’t let our minds or our bodies rest.
Without Basic Trust, we don’t have trust in our nature, our inner resources, and in the universe that gave birth to us and is constantly supporting us, constantly providing for us, and will continue providing for us whatever we really need.
(If we don’t have a mate, in this moment, we must not really need a mate—even if it feels like we do. If we don’t have a job, in this moment, we must not really need a job—even if it feels like we do. If we lack anything, in this moment, we must not really need anything—even if it feels like we do.)
Without this trust, we don’t experience ourselves as the children of the universe that we really are. We experience ourselves as abandoned, outcast, left on our own, not being provided for by the universe, and at the same time, small, unable and without what it takes to provide for ourselves. So we live in a constant state of fear.
Basic Trust and The Voice in the Head
If you observe yourself, you will see an almost continuous commentary going on inside. One part of you is always critiquing what you are doing, feeling and thinking, telling you that you are wrong for what you’re feeling or thinking, that you aren’t doing it right and you never will, that you’re basically a bad person anyway, that you shouldn’t do it this way, you should do it that way, and so on.
Seldom do we just sit and allow whatever happens to happen. This is what we mean by the discord, the dis-ease, the discomfort, the not-ok-ness we feel on the inside, and it happens because we have little if any Basic Trust.
If Basic Trust informs your experience, your psyche is relaxed. Your soul is at peace with itself, your situation, even your relationship status. You rest in the unquestioned confidence that the universe provides, that you have and will receive what you really need, and that things are workable.
If we really have this trust, this deep inner relaxation, it becomes possible to live our lives out of love, out of an appreciation of life, out of enjoyment in what the universe provides for us, and out of compassion and kindness for others and ourselves. Without it, we live our lives defensively, in conflict with others and with ourselves, becoming self-centered and egoistic.
To find our Basic Trust is to reconnect with our natural state. When we are innately infused by reality, our soul or consciousness is completely transparent to the truth that we and the universe are one, that we are supported by Reality and that Reality is by its very nature good, and that what happens is inevitably right since it emerges out of the inherent perfection.
When you understand this, it becomes obvious why it is so difficult to relax and let go and why it is so important to regain Basic Trust.“
Please reach out to me if you’d like to discuss this or any other topic impacting your love life. I offer a free 30-minute coaching session to anyone interested in how I might be able to help them attract lasting love. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me directly at 407-687-3387.
Roy Biancalana is a certified relationship coach, a TV personality, and the author of two books, the latest of which is the #1 best-seller, Attracting Lasting Love: Breaking Free of the 7 Barriers that Keep You Single. For the past 10 years, Roy’s mission has been supporting single people in the art of attracting and creating conscious, lasting relationships. He offers a complimentary 30-minute coaching session to anyone interested in working with him. You can learn more about him by visiting, www.coachingwithroy.com.