This has been a trying time for me personally.
I must admit my faults here. I have been frustrated, angry and hostile… in part due to things said politically and more in part to the religious icons who defend hostility and anger. I got too close to the matter and it caused me to also get afflicted with anger.
As I took time out, in meditation, and contemplated it all… I came back to the base beliefs that I hold:
- Source/God is within us all
- Each of us is a shifting personality
- Each of us deserves love
God within Us
In Luke 17:21 Jesus is quoted as saying a response, “…the kingdom of God is within you…” Yes, I realize modern translations have modified this to mean “the kingdom of God is amongst you” yet the word entos really translates to being inside of something (only theological sources propose the alternative narrative.)
In the East the idea of God within, is very present. Namaste makes a point to the source of God being in all of us.
If each of us: you, me, Obama, Trump, Clinton, all have God within – we have something in each of us deserving respect. Individual action might not be godly, but there is something Godly in all (perhaps dormant.) If dormant, then such individuals need prayer and compassion.
My Buddhist teacher from the old days, Lama Marut, had a guided meditation on compassion. It started with a recognition of three archetypes:
- Those we love
- Those we are neutral to
- Those we are adverse to
These three archetypes are meditated upon and the shifting nature of people… a person we love, may become someone we’re neutral to. Someone we’re neutral towards, might become someone we love or someone we dislike. Someone we dislike could become someone we’re neutral to…
Meditating on this and the potential that each person has been at one time, each of these states to us can help us find that compassion for all.
Out of the Cave
In Paul Selig’s work “The Book of Mastery,” he discusses the topic of those we put in proverbial caves (such as “bad people,” or people we don’t like.) By doing, we do not free ourselves but shackle ourselves. We become linked and chained to the one in darkness – and suffer continually with their presence.
A better approach is to spiritually/mentally walk them out of the cave. To see them in the light of their being… the source that lives in them. Yes, their actions are bad… but we share a common source and if we can see that in them, we can transform them into something better… and our perception can generate a reality.
You might be, as I am, someone who is frustrated or saddened by decisions made by Donald Trump. Perhaps you get upset with the religious who defend his actions and call it Holy. Or maybe you are opposite to me and believe he’s a good Christian. Either way, we have a real world example.
Each of us probably has a strong opinion on the world affairs going on in America. Let’s say you, like me, find Trump and those who support him, to be far off base. Instead of being angry at him and them, it’s a better approach to see that person as God within them. Or to see them as who they were as a child… as an infant… as a dying elderly person. In those states, perhaps we can find that compassion.
“I am love through the one before me, word I am word.” – I Am Word by Paul Selig
The quote above is from another work by Selig. The affirmation there is to experience love through the one before you (whether they be someone you care for, are neutral towards or someone you dislike.) It’s yet another way to help see the beauty in others.
By unlinking ourselves to the anger and resentment between someone and ourselves, we cut the ties that bind. We stop the cycle of suffering. To be angry at a person now, and that person leaves, will only invite another person to take their place in the future. It is only after we cut the ties to the anger, that the object of the anger actually goes away. Mystical yes… but it works.
If Donald Trump is the object of your anger, I invite you to instead see him with the eyes of love and compassion. See him as a child. See him as the way God might see him. See God within him. Perhaps not his actions being Godly, but his “self” having a spark of God somewhere in there.
If instead, you feel that Hilary Clinton, Obama or the news media is the bad guy, I invite you to do the same practice on them. There should not ever be someone you hold in content. Do not mock or deride others. This is the only way to help yourself.
If we do not change, we are simply destined to repeat the same exercise again and again. I for one am done with this hamster wheel of a life experience. I choose compassion.