Wednesday, January 12, 2011

This incarnation of me

"When you meet your needs as they are, without judgments or conditions, they can evolve naturally, in a way that supports your spiritual growth. It is not necessary to pit your spirituality against your humanity." 

In his book, The Healing Power of Kindness, Vol. 1: Releasing Judgment, Ken Wapnick tells a story about two women who are in A Course in Miracles group together. 

One woman, whom he calls Pat, finds another woman in the group, whom he calls Alice, to be annoying. Unfortunately, once they are in the group together Alice starts coming to the same park that Pat goes to every day for her quiet meditation time. 

Every day Alice comes and sits down next to Pat and annoys her during what is supposed to be her spiritual time. 

Pat is beside herself, not only because she finds Alice so annoying and does not want to sit and talk to her, but also because she feels like since they are in a spiritual group together, she "should" want to talk to her, or at least be able to fake it. 

Ken Wapnick denies that this is what the Course, or any spiritual discipline, requires of us and gives her a great tool for dealing with these situations which I call "This incarnation of me."

He says, "We all have our preferences of likes and dislikes: food, colors, personality types, music...That is a fact of our existence in this world as bodies, and has nothing to do with our spiritual status. Therefore, we need but acknowledge our preferences without making them into an issue. Pat could simply have recognized that she prefers not to spend time with Alice, without hating or judging her and without making the situation into a cosmic spiritual test, which she appeared to have failed...The kind and gentle approach would have been to simply acknowledge: 'This is the self I think I am: I like food A; I like movie A; I prefer to be with person A.' In that spirit, Pat could simply have excused herself and then sat somewhere else or gone back to her apartment, and she would have remained peaceful throughout."
In order to do this we recognize the fact that we have incarnated into this world of illusion in this body and at this time. With every body comes a certain personality, certain likes and dislikes, that we can't change and can't always control. We are going to be triggered by people and events in this lifetime and it is better to recognize that and to accept it than to fight against it. 

Ever since reading this passage when I find myself triggered by a person or an event, I try and remember that "This incarnation of me" does not like blow-hards or brussles sprouts, or that "This incarnation of me" is too tired to read to my kids or have sex with my husband, and just accept that and move on with love.

 The with love being the key. 

This technique requires a lot of self-awareness and great communication skills, otherwise it can be misinterpreted by those around you as selfishness or not caring.

Using "I" messages, while being both kind and firm seems to work well. And many times, even if the other person does not react favorably, I feel relief just being able to accept myself as I am and where I am at that moment.

No comments:

Post a Comment