My partner exitedly told me about insights she had this evening, taking a stressful belief into inquiry (her insights are actually amazingly profound, detailed and clear). And as most of us do when exited about something, she talked about it for quite a while. At some point, I thought…
She shouldn’t talk so much.
- Yes (It feels true in the moment.)
- No (Cannot know that is absolutely true, nor that it would be better for her or my path.)
- When I have that belief…
I become distracted from what she says. My attention goes to the thought that she shouldn’t talk so much, and from there easily wanders elsewhere as well. There is also a discomfort in my body. And discomfort from seeing my thoughts about her and my wandering attention. There is a sense of disconnection between us, and to myself.
- Who or what am I without that belief?
My attention would be on what she is saying, as it was before this thought came up. I feel a sense of connection with her and myself.
- (a) I should not talk so much.
Yes, that is definetely as or more true. The moment that thought comes up, and I believe in it, I am the one talking too much. I engage in a silent monologue about how she should not talk so much, and this prevents me from being with what she is saying.
(b) She should talk so much.
Yes, she should because that is what she does, until she doesn’t. She also should because she is exited about her insights, and this is how that exitement comes out in this situation. And she should, because I actually truly enjoy listening and learning from it.
(c) My thoughts shouldn’t talk so much.
Yes, this is true as well. It is a more accurate statement of what came up in (a). At the moment the thought she should not talk so much comes up, and I believe in it, I fuel it, make it stay around, elaborate on it, and engage in an inner monologue around it. This inner talking prevents me from listening to her words. It also creates a sense of separation from her and myself.