Nobody was mean to you. Somebody was mean to what he or she thought was you, but not you. Nobody ever rejects you; they’re only rejecting what they think you are. But that cuts both ways. Nobody ever accepts you either. Until people come awake, they are simply accepting or rejecting their image of you. They’ve fashioned an image of you, and they’re rejecting or accepting that. See how devastating it is to go deeply into that. It’s a bit too liberating. But how easy it is to love people when you understand this. How easy it is to love everyone when you don’t identify with what they imagine you are or they are, It becomes easy to love them, to love everybody.
– Anthony DeMello in Awareness: Conversations with the Masters
Yes, we relate to our images of ourselves, others, and the world. When we reject others, something in the world, a part of ourselves, or God, it’s from rejecting an image. We love images. We are attracted to images. We seek images. We avoid images. We create our own world of images and we live our lives based on how we relate to these images.
We struggle with images because they have a charge to them, and that charge comes from associating certain sensations with each of these images. We take these sensations as either attractive or aversive, and that makes us seek or avoid the corresponding images. And, ironically, experiencing sensations as good or bad comes from certain images and ideas about them. The whole process is circular and mind-created.
Anthony DeMello took this general principle and applied it to a specific topic. And we can do the same with just about any topic. I love cake because of my images of the cake and the feelings and sensations I associate with it. I avoid stubbing my toe because of the images and corresponding feelings that come up with then I consider it. I chose cake because of my images and sensations. I avoid stubbing toes (as far as I can) because of my images and the sensations that come up in me when I consider it.
To the extent we see through this – intellectually, viscerally, and through experience – we find love for ourselves, others, and the world. We uncover the love that’s here naturally.
We also find more freedom in how we practically relate to ourselves, others, and the world. Seeing through the dynamics, and perhaps having the charge reduced, we have more freedom in how we relate to anything. It tends to lessen our struggle and helps us find more ease in life.
It’s one thing to hear or intuit this and another to actually do it. So how do we do it? For me, the tools I find most attractive right now include forms of inquiry, heart practices, and Vortex Healing.