I hope everyone had a great weekend. Here in my part of the northeastern US we had a gorgeous day on Saturday followed by a cool and rainy Sunday. All in all the weather was pretty good for most of the weekend. Thanks for coming back for today’s installment.
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Now for today’s post. Are you ready to learn more about attachments to people? Let’s go!
False Self Needs to Know Its Place
One of the valuable lessons I took from Eckhart Tolle recently was his comment that false self (or ego) is always trying to place itself above or below those around it. This is a very powerful insight and can help us to understand when to recognize that we are acting from false self.
As we have stated a number of times during the past week, false self knows that it is not supposed to be alone. When it is not trained properly it becomes very afraid. One of the places that those fears manifest themselves is in how it relates to other people.
False self has a very hard time treating anyone as an equal. Because of its fear it decides if it should be above or below someone else. Lets’ take a closer look at this.
Putting Itself Below
If we meet someone that false self feels is powerful, or perceives as someone who could help us, false self usually puts that person in a superior position. False self looks up to that person and tries not to upset that person. It perceives that if it gets that other person mad then that person won’t like false self anymore and will not be able to help with whatever false self thinks it needs help with.
In other words, if false self views that it needs another person it usually puts itself below that person. This is not always the case, nor is it the only reason why false self behaves like this, but for our purposes it will serve for our discussion.
Another reason that false self may put itself below another person is because it wants something directly from that person. What it wants will differ widely from love, to money, to a job and anything else you can think of. However the base of this choice of false self position is rooted in false self ingratiating itself with the person it has chosen to be below.
False self wants something from this other individual. It thinks that if it gets the other person mad at them then they won’t give false self what it wants. How often have we all behaved like this?
Putting Itself Above
When false self sees no need to respect another person it usually puts itself in a superior position. There can be several different fears being acted upon here, so we will take a look at a few of them.
First, false self is very threatened by the idea of someone who is “different” from it. It views those differences as a threat to its attachment to its ideas or its self image. Some of the common differences that threaten false self are religion, gender, nationality, and sexual preference.
Next, rather than attempt to deal with these differences and treat the other individual as an equal, false self decides that they have no worth. Finally, once false self views the person who is “different” as having no worth then it no longer needs to think about them. It has put itself above the “different” individual and given that “different” individual no standing.
The Attachment Is to the Position
Once false self has decided that it is above or below someone it gets attached to that position. Remember, false self is very scared. False self finds change to be very scary. False self tries to keep relationships from changing by becoming attached to either its superior or inferior position.
Now, in all this, false self has never consulted the other person to find out if they want to be in the inferior or superior position that our false self has so graciously bestowed on them. Watch how this can easily lead to conflict.
My false self has decided for whatever it considers are reasons that you are inferior to it. Then you decide to at least be equal. My false self views this as a threat to its attached idea of where you should be. Instead of blaming itself for its attachment my false self decides to blame you for deciding to change your part of the relationship. Doesn’t this sound like a common cause for conflict and violence in our society?
There Are Many More Reasons
By no means do I intend to cover all the possible relationships and all the possible reasons that false self needs to place itself above or below another person. All that I am attempting to do here is to help you to start to understand another example of false self behavior.
Remember, any time we want to find our true happiness we must start with observing our behavior. We observe the behavior that we do not like because it is causing us to be unhappy. These examples are for that purpose.
As you go through your day practice watching if you are considering yourself above or below those around you. Once you start to see that you are behaving in this manner notice the situation in which you are doing so. Then ask yourself why you are doing so.
Practicing this observation and question method will serve two main purposes. First it will help you to know when you are not treating other people as equals. Next it will start to improve all you relationships.
Once you start to recognize people as equals and treat them with the respect of an equal, they will be much more likely to respond to you in the same manner. Gradually this will improve almost every one of your interpersonal relationships.
That’s all for today. Tomorrow we will look at how true self relates to the people around us.
Until tomorrow –
Es kava turen hai
We work towards an identical goal.
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