in the thick
slowing down helps
Ego Why do you think you need meditation? I’m not even sure that I know what it is!
Higher Self Take a look at Body where we co-habit. As partners, we observe stress, negative self-talk, competitiveness, gossip, an obsession with lattes, one personality with one group of people and a different personality with another group! I think Body could benefit from taking a break (slowing down), creating space for new and higher level thoughts, and simply “being” without “doing.” Once there is some room between thoughts, Ego, Source offers direction for more balance.
Ego Well, that’s not really the nature of life. To get ahead, action is necessary; if you sit around “being,” you’ll never amount to anything. Besides, isn’t observing others kind of like “being”? In judging them, you make yourself feel like an exceptional person. Besides, talking about people is normal, hardly grounds for a court case; everyone does it. Then there is the matter of having the right clothes to “fit in” and choosing chameleon-like characteristics (matching your opinions and behaviors to any given situation). With this positioning, you are ripe for success. You show everyone how you want to be seen! Do you really think that just “being” is enough?
Higher Self It seems to me that the examples you listed are all about how we become unique, yet more distant from Source and from others. All of us are interconnected and interdependent; it doesn’t matter what we look like, how we think, or our collection of emotional baggage and material stuff. We are not better than or less than any other energy—we only think in those terms.
Ego I don’t understand what your comments have to do with meditation.
Higher Self Meditation slows our frenetic pace, takes us away from self-centeredness (me, my, mine), and sets us on a path of thoughtful observation. When we meditate, we learn to be mindful. In observing things around us as they happen without explaining them in terms of the past or the future, we open our hearts to happiness and contentment with life.
Ego As long as things go the way I expect them to, I am happy and content.
Higher Self We do not have any control over what happens to us. Oh sure, we may have fewer cavities when we don’t eat sugar or we may not be as seriously injured in a biking accident when we wear a helmet, yet we do not have control over the occurrence of cavities or our involvement in a bicycle accident. Lack of control is a difficult concept to understand and even more difficult to accept.
We may think that we are in control, yet it is the universe that comes to us in continuous flux. Things simply happen. We experience less suffering (anger, competitiveness, jealousy, unfairness, desire for attention or awards, or greed) when we accept circumstances (what “is”) rather than trying to wish the situation to be different. Wishing cannot change situations. Conditions present themselves, and we cannot make them different. We are happier when we lessen our resistance and insistence of expectations. That is a healthy focus.
Ego You mean to tell me that the boundaries I’ve established for Body are not helpful?
Higher Self No, some of the boundaries you set up have been beneficial and nourishing—like suggesting working limited hours at a second job to pay for the kids’ dance lessons and costumes. That’s your job—to set affirmative boundaries—it’s just that (uh, how shall I say this…?) we need to work together to set healthy limits. Once Body got a taste of life with more money, you teamed up with Greed and encouraged Body to spend more hours at the job, compromising relationships. Insisting on your own way, with no room for compromise, increased the separation between Body, family, and Source, creating tension within the family. This is the opposite direction we wanted Body to go.
Ego Look at Body: Isn’t it noble to offer children everything? What’s wrong with that?
Higher Self The key word is “everything.” It makes Body competitive, greedy, arrogant, and impatient. These are words of separation. Together, we need to promote the boundaries of moderation, acceptance, love, and connection. Meditation can offer space and time to explore these boundaries.
Ego And meditation—slowing down and “being”—is going to change the boundaries?
Higher Self Perhaps not right away. Gradually, though, calmness and composure become part of the equation, and Body sees situations in a more balanced way. Creative problem-solving is available because Body is open to solutions from a higher perspective rather than recycling the forces that created the problem in the first place. When we work together, healthy boundaries—and contentment—become possible.
© 2015 Barbara L. Krause