Inquiry: It is better if they don’t think this is how/who I am

 

It is better if they don’t think this is how/who I am. (When I am out of it due to illness, lack of sleep, or something else.)

  1. True?
    No. I can find feelings that seem to tell me it is true. I can find stories telling me it is true. I can find others who will tell me it is true. I can experience it as true sometimes, when I go into these feelings or stories. But that doesn’t make it true. There is no evidence that it is true. (My “evidence” is that I need to look good to others, but that one is clearly no evidence.)
  2. Sure?
    No. It is just an opinion.
  3. What happens when I believe that thought?
    • I get self-conscious. I try to imagine how I look to others. How to manipulate how I appear to others. And then if it works or not. I am aware of the guesswork at each step, which only makes me try harder.
    • I make excuses. I tell them that I am not feeling to well, that I have bronchitis so my brain doesn’t work that well, that I haven’t slept as much as I need to, and so on. I experience a discomfort in making excuses and bringing attention to these things, especially since I don’t need to. It is just a side-track from what we are doing.
    • How do I treat others? As somebody who will judge me. Somebody whose view of me I have to manipulate. Somebody I need to like me.
    • When did I first have that thought? Probably early in childhood, from my parents, when they or we met other people. I noticed how they tried to manipulate their image of them. I noticed the fear behind it. I assimilated it, because this is apparently what people do in this place. And it seemed important to them, so my best guess at the time was that it was important for me as well.
    • What am I not able to appreciate because of that thought? That I can relax, embrace the fullness of what is happening with me here now.  That I don’t need to manipulate anyones image of me. It is OK anyway.
    • What type of feelings do I get to avoid because of that thought? The fullness of what is happening here now, including the fuzziness of mind, the fear of how others may see me, the heartfelt connection with the others which is always there whether I notice it or not.
  4. Who would I be without it?
    • Relaxed. Here now. Allowing the fullness of what is happening. Enjoying the fullness of it, which is there independent of the particulars. Enjoying the connection with myself and the others. Friendly connections.
  5. Turnarounds.
    • It is better if they think this is how/who I am.
      • Because it is true. When my mind is fuzzy or not, that is how I am. Whether I resist it or not, that is how I am. I am not the ideal image of myself that I have created, I am whatever is happening here now.
      • It helps me see my beliefs around it, and take them to inquiry.
      • It is where they are at right now. For instance, there is a projection component there which helps them see themselves in (their image of) me. I become a mirror for them, which is beautiful.
    • It is worse if they don’t think this is how/who I am.
      • If they don’t think this is how/who I am, right now, they cling to an image of how I used to be or can be. They are not paying attention to what is happening here now.
    • It is better if I don’t think this is how/who I am.
      • That is certainly more true. It is better if I see this is what is happening here now, and don’t make it into an image of “how I am” in an abstract way. It is what is happening here now, and that is it.
      • It is better if I see that this is not what I really am.
      • It is better if I just notice it, without being so self-conscious about it. Without adding an idea of an “I” to it, and monitoring it for how well it fits an ideal image.
    • It is better if I don’t think this is how/who they are.
      • Yes, also more true. I try to image who they are, in how they see me, which is futile.
      • It is also better if I don’t think what I am experiencing, over here, is what they  are experiencing, over there.
      • And it is better if I see that how/who they are in the world, here now, is not what they really are.

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