“I don't like that man. I must get to know him better.” ~ Abraham Lincoln
Why did people call Lincoln “Honest Abe”?
He tended to tell the truth mostly because he saw the truth most of the time.
He knew deep down how everyone is a mirror for other human beings. On an ego level, Lincoln appeared to dislike people, to judge people and to feel agitated in dealings with certain people. But beneath ego and its illusions, Old Honest Abe knew the shadow was not in the person, but in his mind.
I cannot think of any examples of a human being who reflects shadows back to human beings on a global scale (hehehehehe…..) but in the name of pure neutrality, sit down and list the last 5 human beings who appeared to annoy you. Perhaps your husband or wife, brother or sister, or children agitated you. Maybe, just maybe, a politician or group of politicians appeared to annoy you. How about the boss or CEO? What about your client or customer?
Create your list. Sit down. Get to know them better. Either from afar or up close and personal, the root of annoyance is fear-pain in YOUR mind, triggered by some action an individual takes. Facing, feeling and releasing the fear from YOUR mind lets you clearly see the agitating, annoying interaction was in YOUR mind. Even better? Compassion kicks in, allowing you to observe any perceived rudeness, nastiness, hate, boorishness or heck, any lower energy in an individual is *their* fear-pain manifest, from prior experiences, that has nothing to do with you.
This process feels liberating, calming and a tad bit enlightening but agitating, annoying and sometimes maddening. All of the fear-anger you pent up and attempted to unload-project onto your boss, husband-wife or politician running for office is not their fault, but your feelings. One must harbor fear-anger to be angry, and no thing or sentient being outside of you can manufacture and inject that fear-anger into you; all they-it can do is trigger what is already there.
The downside of this practice is a few uncomfortable moments. Emotional outbursts can/do ensue, including rage-filled explosions, rivers of tears and a general depressive emotion, sometimes. Other times, you feel embarrassed, ashamed or guilty for trying to inflict pain and suffering on another sentient being because you feared to face your fears.
The upside of this practice is feeling predominantly:
Once you get to know someone better, you clearly see all of their alleged flaws are their buried fears, unaddressed, manifest. Forgive them for being just as human and fallible as you are. Perhaps you will make this observation from afar because you will not befriend this person – little to no resonance – but sometimes, you will befriend someone you inaccurately perceived to be your enemy.
Everything depends on your willingness to completely own your thoughts, feelings, actions and the mirroring nature of every being who simply reflects your thoughts and feelings back to you.