[01/23/23] Mind Body Monday: The relationship between judgment and fear
When we look at someone else or something else and we decide that it is wrong, or not enough or they are not doing it right, we are in essence saying that their thoughts, beliefs, words or actions make us feel unsafe.
So, Let’s unpack this:
Sometimes I might feel that when you are speaking or behaving in the way that you do, and I recognize that it is different from me and mine, then I am feeling that you challenge my belief in myself, and that makes me feel confused and fearful.
We say to ourselves, if you can think and feel the way you do and it is sooo different than the way I do, then something (or someone) must be wrong, and I know it’s not me, lol..
You see I have given quite a lot of thought to my beliefs.. I've given them a lot of my attention, and sure maybe they are not ALL my beliefs.. Maybe if i am being totally honest they might be things I was told.. They might be teachings I was taught, but they also might be born of the experiences that I have had, and thus they are mine and if mine are different from yours, well.. Someone must be wrong. Musant they? ( I don’t know that musant is a word, but I think you know what I mean by that.. ;)
And knowing… As I believe I know, that two opposing beliefs cannot both exist in the same space of truth, so then I must choose my own. And if you are thinking, speaking or acting in a way that’s different from me, well, then again, someone must be wrong and it must be you because it certainly cannot be me. Lol
Thus I respond to the stimuli of the discomfort of your opposing being, with the feeling that YOU should be different. And sometimes with that feeling I may walk away, shaking my head, but sometimes I feel the need to point out to you how you are doing it wrong. ;) My initial intention would be of course to save you from pain, at least that is what I tell myself. I want to save you from the pain of thinking like you do.
If you are close to me, if we are intimate: parent, friend, lover, child, then the drive is the strongest. Sweetheart, I say, you really should be doing it this way. Because I don’t want you to make a mistake. I don’t want you to be hurt.
So, Why is it so important to me that you not make a mistake? Or that you not make a mistake that perhaps I have made. Why must I keep you or desire to keep you from screwing up, as I see it?
Because the thought of you in pain frightens me. That’s the truth. If I think I know how you should do something and you do it differently than I would, and you get hurt, well now I have this feeling of responsibility for you and I am afraid of your pain.. which means I am really afraid of my own.
Why am I so afraid of you being hurt? Being angry? Being unhappy? Because past trauma has informed me that when someone I love is unhappy then I might suffer.
Not just the suffering I might feel at witnessing your upset, but the suffering you might cause Me because you are upset. Maybe you might yell. Maybe you might say hurtful things. Maybe you might strike out, in action (for those of you who have been physically hurt) or maybe just through passive aggressive frustration, leaving me feeling unsafe. Maybe you might withdraw, leaving me feeling alone or abandoned. Maybe you might self harm, or turn to drugs or alcohol. Maybe you might sink into depression? Whatever it is that you choose to do as a result of your pain, often resonates with a memory of someone else who harmed me or left me or simply energetically went away.
If, on the other hand, I can point out to you when your thoughts disturb my peace of mind, or when you are “other” to me, perhaps I can get you on board with agreeing with me. In which case if I am wrong we go down, at least we go down together, lol. At least I am not alone. At least I do not feel unloved.
If I can control those that I love then I believe I can always be safe. I can always anticipate their behaviors (because they are my own). If I have made a mistake in controlling your thoughts with my own, then I can apologize, sympathize, and this feels easier than the thought that you might be out there unknowingly or worse, willfully making choices that I am certain will lead to your unhappiness…
Does this make sense? Check comments
So, what does it mean when it is not an intimate? When it is a public figure, a politician, someone who might have control over our lives with their choices and behaviors? Again it goes back to that feeling that someone must be right and someone must be wrong, and I am certain that wrong person is not me, lol.
So, what can I do? How can I escape from this constant feeling of judgment of those around me? What they like, what they don’t like. What they do, what they don’t do?
Well, I can decide that my version of right is not their version of right or truth and allow them to have it, staying secure in the faith that whatever happens, I will still be safe.
And it is my belief that the harder that is for someone to believe, (that they would be safe), then the more trauma they have likely suffered.
But this is the way out of suffering. For ultimately we cannot control anyone but ourselves. Right? We are not responsible for anyone else's behavior but our own. How we choose to see things, how we choose to react to what we hear and see… That is where our power lies, that is where safety lies.
Just because I think what you think is wrong, doesn’t mean it is. It is not wrong for you. Clearly, because in this space and time, it is what you Believe based on everything You have been taught and experienced. Those beliefs are not less valuable than mine, nor less true even when they contradict me. ;)
In fact with this contradiction comes amazing contrast. With this contrast comes an opportunity for me to see that perhaps my beliefs need revision. Perhaps my teaching, my upbringing, my judgements, my trauma responses, my experiences need some awareness brought to them. Some light shined into the shadow.
Now, This doesn’t necessarily mean that I would change my thoughts to be yours, but it might mean that your opposing views would be the catalyst to a new awareness my spirit has been seeking.
Or..perhaps they in their contrast would allow me to seek deeper into my own beliefs and habits to discover that I like what I see in myself. I like what I think. I love and respect who I am even more than perhaps I had previously seen. Doesn’t that have value?
And if we focus on that love for ourselves, then it naturally follows that we will have more love for everyone else. Including… an allowing and acceptance for those that disagree with us. For those that combat us. For those that I cannot agree with. Even for those that make us afraid.
Despite everything that is happening everywhere, we can still love. That is where our power lies. In love and in the faith that everything is exactly as this moment has designed it to be. That control of another person is an illusion, and that, whether or not we can understand it, We are all living our lives in accordance with how we are meant to live it. The lessons we are meant to learn. The consequences that we are meant to have. The understanding that we are meant to reach. And if we try to control any of that, well then we are just placing our will above your someone elses, which ultimately will lead to more pain… just for us. Only We hurt when we look at someone else and decide they are wrong. Only we suffer when we want someone to be other than they are. Freedom from fear lies in the acceptance of what is.. not the fighting of it.
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