"So you work on yourself as a gift to other human beings. Then you use every situation you have with other human beings as vehicle to work on yourself, by seeing where you get stuck, where you push, where you grab, where you judge, where you do all the stuff." - Ram Dass
After another week full of personal development, I opened up to my friends, to help me relieve my suffering, but also to basically ask for help. One friend kindly shared a beautiful resource with me, a self-love meditation on Insight Timer (s. more at the end of this post), that brings me to tears every time I close my eyes. This meditation invites us to love and listen to ourselves, by saying "I love you" to ourselves. When I scanned the meditation before, I didn`t believe these words could have any impact on me (given also my reflection on affirmations yesterday), but I definitely wanted to give it a try, also because I appreciated my friend sharing this gift. At the end, I had nothing to lose, didn`t I?
When I did the meditation of self-love, I was stunned by what came up. Not only got I, of course, emotional, but I also saw myself. This time not as my Younger Self, as I would often see, but I actually saw myself shattered in pieces, covered with something you may call warts, dirt, or furuncles. I can`t describe how I felt as I was both shocked, but also compassionate. One part of me (probably my mind trying to fix everything) wanted to "heal" this image and see me fully recovered, shining in beauty and light. But whatever I did, the image wouldn`t change, and I knew that this shattered version of me that I saw didn`t need a fix or transformative healing, but just someone sitting by her side, holding her, and actually loving her for who she currently is, with all the scarves, wounds, and hurt. I realized - also inspired by my spiritual readings - I had to embrace and love my shadow, my darker sides, my ugly sides, my imperfections, too. This is what will lead to a transformation - not by replacing a negative image by a beautiful one, but by loving every image that exists within me. To give love where love is missing.
While I am now committed to my new mission of self-love, a new module of my current Positive Intelligence training got unlocked, introducing the "Sage" perspective next to our dominant "Saboteur" perspective. I haven`t watched all the videos yet, but already the ones I did helped me shift my current perspective. One video told a beautiful, popular story, that I am happily sharing with you now (in my own words), that will help integrate the wisdoms into our lives:
There was once a poor man in a poor village. He was a farmer living with his family in modest conditions, engaging with the village community from time to time. One day, during such a village festival he won a beautiful, strong horse. All his neighbors were celebrating and congratulating him, "You are one lucky man, owning this beautiful, strong horse!" The farmer thanked and simply replied, "Whether this is good or bad, who knows." Then one day, the beautiful horse ran away, leaving the farmer and his family alone. The neighbors soon came and comforted him, "We are sorry for you! It must be horrendous to lose a horse!" The farmer thanked and simply replied, "Whether this is good or bad, who knows." Then the next day, this beautiful horse returned home to the farmer, but had with him a herd of many other beautiful horses. The neighbors celebrated him, "How great! Now you not only have your horse back, but also so many other horses, too!" The farmer thanked and simply replied, "Whether this is good or bad, who knows." Then one day, the farmer`s son rode one of the horses and fell, hurting his leg. The neighbors solaced him, "We are sorry to hear that your son got hurt!" The farmer thanked and simply replied, "Whether this is good or bad, who knows." Weeks later, the government would visit the village to call all men for an upcoming war. As the farmer`s son was injured, he was not called in. The neighbors shared with the farmer, "You are a lucky father!" The farmer thanked and simply replied, "Whether this is good or bad, who knows!"
I never get tired listening to this story, because it has so many wisdoms:
Everything will pass.
Every situation has a gift (even if it is a lesson) for us.
Whether a circumstance is good or bad, depends solely on your own perception.
How others judge your life is not something you need to care about.
Change is the only constant.
Live in balance.
Life has its ups and downs, always for us to evolve.
What you believe in will shape how you see and experience life.
You never know what this may be good for - maybe something better will come along.
Appreciate every moment.
Happiness and peace don`t depend on material wealth.
Take life with a sense of humour.
Life is not black or white.
Others often want to share their views, to help release their emotions.
You decide what you want to believe in.
Trust and go with the flow of life.
Life is full of diverse experiences.
What gifts can you see in your current situation? How else can you see your life, too? To help you in this process, let me share one example from my life:
I was so heartbroken after I dated one guy, that it took me years to heal from this pain and learn my lessons that I needed to learn (or spiritually speaking, that my soul wanted to learn). It is natural if you are first in your ego, victim state like "It was all his fault! He is the bad guy! How could he disrespect me like that! Something is totally wrong with him if he had to act like this! He doesn`t deserve any good! For what he had done to me! ..." But clinging to your resentments will only cause you pain, while the other person may have already moved on. As you may have read, too, not forgiving is like drinking a cup of poison, but hoping the other person will get hurt by it.
But even knowing and reading a lot about forgiveness, relationships, and self-love, it still took me a long time to close this chapter. Whether it was because I had loved for the first time, or because my pain was too big this time, or because I was just a newbie in this spiritual work, I don`t judge myself for the time I needed (e.g. a friend with good intentions told me to just date other guys, but I could feel I was just not ready for it). Today, I tried to apply the "seeing the gift in EVERY situation" to this painful heartbreak episode and this is what I wrote in my journal:
What is the gift of my heartbreak? I learned to love against all odds. I learned about relationships, men, and intimacy. I learned about forgiveness, self-love, and letting go. I learned how important shared values and boundaries are, and how important it is to communicate own needs. I learned hell of a lot about myself and future relationships. This heartbreak broke my heart and door open, to personal development and spirituality, which is now core and center of my life. I learned how painful heartbreaks and relationships can be, which extended my range of compassion and connection. I learned about my victimized ego and my Higher Self. All in all, I learned about love.
What one gift do you see in your current situation? Let me know by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org – I would be very keen to hear your views! :) PS: Subscribe to my Newsletter to stay in touch for any upcoming posts and news :)
This week`s ...
Reflection: What is one gift I can see in my current situation?
Intention: I acknowledge my emotions, and am likewise curious to explore the gifts of my current situation.