Wednesday, April 21, 2010
Seeing Ourselves in Others
I believe that many problems between people could be averted in remembering that others mirror back to us those qualities that we ourselves possess. We are not able to recognize a favorable attribute in another if it is something that we do not already own ourselves. This can be a very empowering realization - acknowledging that those people who seem to manifest great things with ease are part of the same creative consciousness that we all embody.
Anything that we admire in another lives in us as well, whether it be the ability to create happiness, peace, joy, healthy relationships, a good job or a shiny new car! Not only the people we encounter every day, but Jesus, the Buddha, the Dalai Lama, and all of the greatest teachers of the world share with us the very same intelligence that brought our collective existence into being.
That we possess the same attributes we witness in others also helps us locate the parts of ourselves that are still in darkness. I remember a teacher at the Aesclepion Healing Institute saying that the people we have the most difficulty with are our biggest teachers. That was really helpful information at the time, because it caused me to begin searching in my own life to see if it was true. And I found that it was.
It’s difficult to accept, in the middle of being very upset with someone else, that they are here to help me learn something valuable about myself that I may have been avoiding. But if I choose to be completely honest with myself, I realize that what I resist in others is usually something I am resisting acknowledging in myself.
It might be that we have been needing to practice compassion or forgiveness, or to be less reactive. Maybe we exhibit the same behavior but haven’t been aware of it. Or it might be that we’ve been involved in a relationship that we’ve needed to walk away from, but out of fear have stayed longer than is healthy.
In the perfect and divine order in which we exist, everyone is our teacher - those we might not see as worthy of that honor, and also those who seem so far beyond us that we could never hope to be where they are. There is no need to hold on to judgment, or envy, because all that we see in others we already possess. Instead, we are provided with the opportunity to choose what we want to do with the information.
I am always grateful for the teachers who come into my life in countless different ways. Some I have welcomed, and some have presented lessons that left me kicking and screaming. But all continue to help me choose how to be the best and highest me.
May this tool be a blessing. . .