My teacher reminded me once that in order to see the goodness in myself I have first to recognize the opposites within me. And that can be a very difficult thing to do in the beginning as the norm of the society that I have been brought up from is about looking good and not showing dirty linen in the public. I remembered years back when I was very young and just started my journey in getting to know myself better, I used to share the incompetency and shortcomings of myself to friends. My only thought at that time was that if I don’t initiate this conversation, everyone will not start the ball rolling. It is an open secret, as Rumi puts it, that we are all the same and we keep thinking that we are the only one in the world that is abnormal and thus what is within is to be kept a secret.
Amazingly the more I shared about stuff I wish to understand, the more people open themselves up to me. Suddenly I saw a huge pandora box awaiting to be embraced and loved – the wounds, hurts and pains that all of us are carrying that we are told not to face. Caroline Myss, the author of the best seller, Anatomy of the Spirit, coined the word woundology as language of understanding our dis-eases.
I was reading The Sunday Star, probably two weeks ago, about an article written by a columnist Asohan, who mentioned about the analogy of a dog being hit by a passing car. The first observation we got is the reaction from the dog writhing in pain and agony other than the shock it has never experienced before in its life. And sooner than we can expect, the dog run away from the scene, oblivious to what has happened. But something serious within it has already started to grow.
Our inner wounds are the same too. In our younger days we are subjected to new negative emotions coming our ways. We are never thought how to face them objectively, and instead being admonished and told not to repeat it again. I am sure those first time emotions experience in this life, in the beginning, can be a total shocked to my system, though it may not be something new to me, from the continuous observation I may have as a baby. Pretty soon, I am like the dog, left that scene hurriedly, without giving myself time to understand deeply why I need to react and caused hurt to myself. Over the years, those experiences are repeatedly reinforced in me again. I am sure this is familiar to you too.
In motivation courses, we are told how to handle and manage those emotions rather than to understand their causes. We are never encouraged to faced them. What are motivational courses and positive thinking all about other than to subdue and ignore what is within all of us that is infesting and growing. We never take time to study our emotions carefully, and instead, like the dog, left that scene hurriedly, as if there are more better things to do in life.
But what is life except the stuffs that we are carrying in each and everyone of us, the demon within that we have not understood and subdued, but instead fed? The responses and reactions to life, moment after moment is the stuffs that we are giving out, day in and day out without fail. Our way of communications, our way of interactions, our way of viewing lives are all and only those stuffs, unless wisdom has come into our lives. No more, no less. Our emotions determine the idea we have about the world and ourselves.
Without facing my own emotions, I will never understand why I see the world as unfair, painful and ugly. I may have moments of beauty, but paled in comparison to the consistent bombardment of negative emotions triggered in me, year after year, month after month, day after day, minute after minute, second after second. Authentically, if you start to be aware of yourself you will know what I mean. That is what pursuit of happiness is all about – we rarely have happiness and for that we have to pursuit – it tells alot about our beingness.
To come back to peace, I have to make peace with myself, loving each and every part of me that I have totally ignored.