Why being stuck in a perspective keeps us, well, stuck…(and unwell)
“Out beyond all ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing there is a field – I’ll meet you there”
Rumi, Sufi mystic and poet
One of the lessons I have been learning recently is how being attached to a particular outlook or perspective can prevent us from getting well. These perspectives are indicative of underlying beliefs and paradigms about life, which become so transparent we do not even see them. However, not seeing them does not mean they are not there or are not affecting our overall health.
So why do I say that being stuck in a perspective can prevent us from getting well, ie, keep us ill? Because underneath the perspective / belief / paradigm will usually be some FEELINGS which we are usually subconsciously avoiding by staying stuck in our perspective. It is these deeply repressed feelings which are blocking our cells and keeping us less than well – infact literally internally divided – which we need to get in touch with.
The interesting thing is, these perspectives usually play out as ‘the need to be right at all costs’. And at some point, we come to realize that if we wish to make progress, we are going to have to go beyond ideas of right and wrong. This is a huge ask for many people, as it requires humility, courage and vulnerability, plus the ability to feel old unwanted feelings.
To give an example which will help understand what I am talking about:
Last year I agreed with a friend to work on a project. We decided which tasks each of us would do, and due to his tasks needing to be completed first, I waited until he had completed his before beginning. The next thing I knew, a week later, I received an email to say he had completed both sets of tasks. My feathers were immediately ruffled as I had been looking forward to my part of the project. I immediately put my Mickel Therapy tools into place by saying ‘How I felt’ about what had happened (key 2) and what I would have liked (key 3). This was all well and good and my body felt better for speaking my truth.
However, he then rejected what I said, (in other words, he had ‘another perspective’), and it was apparent that ‘never the twain shall meet’. I was deeply hurt and shocked that he did not see ‘my point of view’ as our agreement over tasks had been (I thought) quite clear.
At that point, I realized that the only person that could do anything about this situation was me. I started to ask myself, OK, what’s this situation REALLY trying to teach me? And more to the point, how do I actually FEEL?
I realized that huge feelings of betrayal and injustice were rising up inside. And I sensed that I had come to that critical point where I had to ‘let go of the story’ (whatever that story was, and whether I felt I was ‘right’), and give myself permission to feel those feelings. And very importantly to allow myself to feel the feelings without any attachment to the story my mind was attaching itself to.
So I very consciously chose ‘yes, I choose to feel what I am feeling right now’, without being attached to the story. And so the healing commenced.
It was excruciating, as I tapped into the pain in my heart that had been there for years, which I was avoiding by staying in wanting to be right. I felt like my heart had been sliced open with a pairing knife, allowing a pool of venomous past hurts to come pouring out.
There was nothing logical to this event. And there was nothing I could do to lessen the pain by thinking about it or rationalizing it away. I simply had to feel it. These were feelings that had been ‘festering’ inside of me for years, and I had been avoiding feeling by protecting and surrounding the heart with criticalness and judgement. It was time to let it go. The process lasted about 3 days, where I went through despair and heart-felt pain like I had never experienced before. Even so, I knew that a great healing was taking place, and that this was a gift.
And for the first time I understood the saying by the wonderful mystic Rumi “Out beyond all ideas of right-doing and wrong-doing there is a field – I’ll meet you there”.
So, next time you find yourself caught in a “I’m right, you’re wrong” scenario, and you want to move beyond it to find the jewel in the treasure chest of the situation, ask yourself one of two questions:
- What feelings am I avoiding feeling by staying right?
- What do I feel if I cut off the story that is associated with being right?
And then allow yourself to FEEL whatever it is that is wanting to be felt.
When we learn to let go of our perspective and transcend right and wrong, (even if we know we were so-called ‘right’), we take ourselves to a bigger perspective where we see that everything that happens is there to help us evolve into a better and bigger person.
From a health perspective, the pain that had been inside my heart, blocking my cells, was gone forever, freeing up my ability to be more compassionate and loving towards both myself and others. Even though it was emotionally excruciatingly painful at the time, I am eternally grateful for the lesson.
Kim Knight – The Art of Health
It’s an art to keep yourself healthy!
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