How did your interactions transitioned and changed after?

Talk about relationships in the context of Spiritual Enlightenment
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TemporalDissonance
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How did your interactions transitioned and changed after?

Post by TemporalDissonance » Thu Jun 27, 2013 8:03 pm

I am curious what was your experience after "awakening" especially when it comes to interacting with people in your lives? Did you experience a shift in your approach or develop any particular strategies?

I know it is weird to suggest we not be truthful and honest or authentic after "awakening" with everyone. However, I have noticed there are times I became more sensitive to the people I interact with and their needs. Instead of speaking honestly and literally "bursting someone's egoic bubble" and causing suffering, I found myself shifting between "I"s to prevent unneeded suffering. It often depends on the level of consciousness of the interactions. Or is this a way my ego is trying to take control?

Example, I had an experience where someone was asking my beliefs in spirituality. I found myself inquiring further and further to this person's spirituality and I recognized immediately that it wasn't "Truth" this person was particularly interested in but was identified with being a "seeker" and "believer" of spirituality and utilizing spirituality to explain things in this person's past, sufferings and life. I felt a deep egoic attachment to spirituality from this person. It was the ego that was identified as being spiritual and that the ego was very content to be in illusion and utilizing these spiritual beliefs in comforting any sufferings in life. There were layers of stories.

I found myself instead of answering the question "what is my spirituality", the only words that I could uttered in the most sincere way was "let go" in reference to this person's ego, sufferings and identifications. It didn't matter what the spiritual beliefs were (not in a dismissive way, but in a nonjudgemental way). I felt deep down this person was perfectly happy with the spiritual beliefs, and that it wasn't my place to suggest otherwise but perhaps to point to the attachments and stories this person had with regards to their suffering, and if the person was interested and ready, could inquire the meaning of it further. The act of asking my spirituality by this person, I felt immediately was a search for validation instead of genuine inquiry. I was talking to an ego and not spirit.

This is a spirituality related example but this applies to all aspects of social interaction as well. More often or not, I have noticed egos seeks validations of their stories rather a sincere interaction.

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by Sighclone » Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:24 am

Great post TD, and great question, and good example.
I became more sensitive to the people I interact with and their needs. Instead of speaking honestly and literally "bursting someone's egoic bubble" and causing suffering, I found myself shifting between "I"s to prevent unneeded suffering. It often depends on the level of consciousness of the interactions. Or is this a way my ego is trying to take control?

Part of waking up is allowing your spontaneous reactions to just roll. I like the way you said "I found myself shifting between "I's". That suggests "non-doership" in your phrasing (witnessing what "little TD" was doing.) I also like that your intuitive motive was to prevent unneeded suffering. And it absolutely depends on the level of consciousness spontaneously sensed in the other person. Ramana Maharshi gave what could be read as conflicting answers to different people in "Talks," if you read them carefully. But he responded intuitively to the level of awareness of the questioner. As did you. If it is a situation where there is a long relationship, and enough time during the interaction to probe further, then you can explore more deeply with the person. I do not sense your ego is trying to "take control." Most people are totally under the command of their ego, no matter what level of intelligence and education they have. ET is an example of a really bright guy completely ensnared by ego and the social and professional aspirations within his academic community. The possibility of an experienced Self utterly independent of ego is a concept only dimly conceived, even as a concept, by those who have not had many experiences there, or have not recognized Pure Awareness when it was happening (such as in a "flow" moment.)

And yes, egos can get "spiritualized," big time. Adyashanti talks about this at length. Sounds like your acquaintance was enamored of his/her elevated opinion of "the magic of spirituality" and its cosmic influence on behavior. And in ways, we here on this forum could be assigned the same label. I spend a couple of years talking nonduality before mainly speaking from experience. It does not sound like your acquaintance was prepared for the consequences of really letting go of identity, of practicing regular meditation/yoga etc. with the intention of awakening...despite being a seeker. Have them read "A New Earth," then chat again. If it resonates, the next conversation could be rewarding.

Back to the "shifting between "I's" - I do it all the time. We have to live in society, or we have to drop out (Ramana did the latter.) Eckhart dropped out for two years. Just because you have become highly sensitive to the egoic machinations of everybody, punctuated often by big painbody eruptions, does not mean you should expect to "bliss out" like a Hare Krishna chanter. Nor is it your responsibility to distort a conventional conversation with some kind of "nondual policeman" response like.."ahem, that was pure ego, and you know the ego is a false self." Your responsibility is to love. And that takes many forms which might seem, on deep afterthought seem to be arguably labeled "ego-posturing" or at best, "other ego-validating." And maybe it was, if viewed from some Higher Brahman Authority. If a nine-year-old girl suddenly loses her mother to a suicide, and is distraught, do you lecture her: "Oh, dear, it's perfectly OK, she was never born and neither were you." Nah, you hug her and empathize with her grief as much as you can, and tell her you will be there for her, and follow through. And not worry about how much ego was being validated.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by treasuretheday » Fri Jun 28, 2013 2:41 pm

Sighclone wrote:Your responsibility is to love
That's it in a nutshell, imho! Speaking here as one who is not an "after," but very much "in process."

We are walking a path to love. I would go so far as to say that my sense of it is that we have incarnated here for one reason only: to learn how to love.

Unitive consciousness, nonduality, allows true love. This level of consciousness dissolves projections & judgements. God, the Devil, and other people, are no longer seen as separate from ourselves. All humans are seen as teachers. People, all people, at whatever level of consciousness, have much to learn from each other. No one is superfluous. Everyone is playing a vital part. This awareness reminds us that judging kept us locked in dualism, unable to love.

There is direct indentification with God or Spirit. A unification of knower, known, & knowing, Father, Son & Spirit, Subject, Object, Relationship.
Life itself is the proper binge.
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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by oak tree » Fri Jun 28, 2013 4:27 pm

I would say there is a shift towards letting others be themselves. And letting me be myself.

There used to be a lot of wanting, needing or seeking during my interactions. For attention, approval, acceptance etc. Wondering what the other person was thinking of me. Did they like me. Was I saying the right things ....

Now, the interactions are usually more relaxed and natural. I listen. There are less judgments going on inside me. There is space.

I don't feel any interest in telling people about my path. Years ago I used to eagerly give books to friends , but it seemed to irritate them! It seems people prefer to simply be accepted for who they are and just listened to.

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by treasuretheday » Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:23 pm

Love it, Oak!
Life itself is the proper binge.
-Julia Child

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by kiki » Fri Jun 28, 2013 5:56 pm

oak tree said it very well.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by Onceler » Fri Jun 28, 2013 7:23 pm

Very good thread going on here.....I see awakening as living as a simple, natural human being, unconstrained by suffering and fear. I have similar responses to oak tree the further my conditioning unravels and deconstructs. I have an increasing tendency to let people be, to listen to them as intently as possible, to (at most) make some simple suggestions or ask questions if my advice is sought. I see more and more how bound up people, myself included, are in their conditioning and habituated patterns and how very little alters these patterns. I try to tell the truth, unless it is too painful and then I say nothing. I try to pay close attentions to my judgements about others as they generally point to my own blind spots and weaknesses....or areas where the conditioning is alive and well. I tend to avoid those who are in full pain body bloom, if at all possible and practical.....I work with some very stressed out, anxious kids. Many times I just observe others and marvel at their behavior and that not so long ago I was under the thrall of fear and suffering as well. More and more I have less and less to say....
Be present, be pleasant.

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by TemporalDissonance » Sat Jun 29, 2013 7:00 pm

Thank you for all your amazing answers!

I too have found the desire or need to talk less and less. I find myself listening more and having little to contribute when the conversation is exceptionally egoic. This has baffled some as I used to be what most considered "outgoing". Instead, some notices how calm, patient and openminded to whatever they have to express that sometimes surprises even frustrates them.

My old wants and needs to be special and approved from external sources and interactions have significantly dropped. Whatever judgement remains, I recognize soon what they are. Similar to many responses here, I too find a love or willingness to let everyone be.

Perhaps I am still adjusting but I find myself shying away from very egoic people and situations, especially dense pain bodies. Yet, I know with more experiences, I would be able to be present even within the most egoic of interactions. The only thing is the feeling of "falseness" when interacting with egos, especially when through my own ego.

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by Sighclone » Sun Jun 30, 2013 5:46 am

The only thing is the feeling of "falseness" when interacting with egos, especially when through my own ego.
I think part of waking up is recognizing the appearance of your own ego. And recognizing it as such. Spontaneity then becomes something other than an autmatic egoic comment or gesture. Eckhart says the ego is a "false self." But when it is the only self known, it is not false. And anyone who challenges the egoic identity is a threat and an adversary. But it becomes easier to be gentle, usually with a question. Does loving an egoic person mean validating their ego? Not necessarily. It's fairly easy to deflect a conversation to something less egoic, or, as others have said here...to say nothing.

Within your circle of friends, there may be some expectations of you...that you will be the same ego-centered person you were in the past. But as you change, those expectations may actually become questions like, "you seem to have changed, what is going on? Are you OK?" Now that is a chance to suggest something about Being...you can "tell your story," if someone asks. But make it brief! Most people have some concept of Enlightenment which has to do with years of meditation -- maybe you can provide a pointer or two. Less is more.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by TemporalDissonance » Tue Jul 02, 2013 12:11 am

Sighclone wrote:I think part of waking up is recognizing the appearance of your own ego. And recognizing it as such. Spontaneity then becomes something other than an autmatic egoic comment or gesture.
Thank you Sighclone. Can there be spontaneity again after waking up then? My sense is that once the recognition of the ego and "false self" are substantial, or the dissolution of the ego is at a specific point, spontaneity returns but instead of coming from the ego "i", it can come from the deeper Self if one allows it totally and surrenders/accepts.

Curious if anyone experience the falling out/change/moving on of relationships on your path especially from strong egos?

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by azurewalking » Tue Jul 02, 2013 2:15 am

I have noticed a change as well, particularly as it pertains to a relationship with someone whom, for some time, I would interact with on a consistent basis.

Through going inward, I have become sensitive to this individual’s ego, and pain-body when it arises. It is very dense. So much so, that lately, after an interaction, I find the need to do Kim Eng’s shaking exercise. This person is intensely attached to her story. I have become aware of how much complaining and foot stomping she does on a daily basis. She also considers herself a part of the spiritual community, so sometimes we will engage in conversations on spiritual matter. Mostly, however, it is conversation regarding what is happening in her life, most often about money and her desire of it.

Lately, I am finding it best if I maintain space as best I can around the conversation. In the past, I played the role of validating almost incessantly, but recently, rather than react, I do nothing. And when I do interact, I strive to do so through non-judgment and love. Through presence, I honor that she is on her own, unique path; a path that is intertwined with all other paths on the level of Being.

To date, I have probably reduced the amount of words I contribute to the conversation by at least half, if not more. The space I experience and thus emanate, even while she talks, is a far better contribution I can offer than to entertain her ego (AND mine, as I can at times feeling it stirring during our interactions).

The only issue I am encountering is the evident backing off from such persistent interaction. Simply put, there is need to allocate some of my attention elsewhere. She’s bound to notice it at some point, and honestly, she’s not the only one, though it is the most prevalent relationship where I am noticing a glaring transition. I am wondering if anyone has noticed the need to lessen their interactions with particular people, whether it was due to the nature of interactions, or due to the arising need to create more balance by shifting attention within their own lives?

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by Sighclone » Tue Jul 02, 2013 6:38 am

Spontaneity is natural in all life, and is tempered only by societal influence (superego) in humans. It can be expressed in bizarre forms, of course, depending on many factors, all linked to both ego and personality, or organic disorders such as Tourrette's Syndrome. I can only speak for myself, of course, regarding any changes I have noticed, and can fairly say that I am a kinder and gentler guy. But Nisargadatta could and would kick people out of his satsangs. And Balsekar could get testy also. I think what really happens is that you become much less concerned with the impact of your spontaneous comments on others, because you are confident that they are more expressive of the Absolute...which means, by the way, that they tend to be much more compassionate, again, at least for me. An occasional experience for me now is that the old egoic autopilot bullshit that used to surface and get expressed now comes up in an environment in which it would be highly exposed, i.e. it seems that the Universe is presenting me with the question..."so you think you are waking up? -- Here try this!" (And a situation which would normally trigger an egoic, often a group egoic response appears.) And nope, I don't always make the Deep Enlightened Guy Perfect Response. Sometimes I backslide. But never without awareness of it, and rarely twice, and often with an apology later. It's all quite amusing.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by merlin41 » Tue Jul 02, 2013 8:53 am

azurewalking wrote:I have noticed a change as well, particularly as it pertains to a relationship with someone whom, for some time, I would interact with on a consistent basis.

Through going inward, I have become sensitive to this individual’s ego, and pain-body when it arises. It is very dense. So much so, that lately, after an interaction, I find the need to do Kim Eng’s shaking exercise. This person is intensely attached to her story. I have become aware of how much complaining and foot stomping she does on a daily basis. She also considers herself a part of the spiritual community, so sometimes we will engage in conversations on spiritual matter. Mostly, however, it is conversation regarding what is happening in her life, most often about money and her desire of it.

Lately, I am finding it best if I maintain space as best I can around the conversation. In the past, I played the role of validating almost incessantly, but recently, rather than react, I do nothing. And when I do interact, I strive to do so through non-judgment and love. Through presence, I honor that she is on her own, unique path; a path that is intertwined with all other paths on the level of Being.

To date, I have probably reduced the amount of words I contribute to the conversation by at least half, if not more. The space I experience and thus emanate, even while she talks, is a far better contribution I can offer than to entertain her ego (AND mine, as I can at times feeling it stirring during our interactions).

The only issue I am encountering is the evident backing off from such persistent interaction. Simply put, there is need to allocate some of my attention elsewhere. She’s bound to notice it at some point, and honestly, she’s not the only one, though it is the most prevalent relationship where I am noticing a glaring transition. I am wondering if anyone has noticed the need to lessen their interactions with particular people, whether it was due to the nature of interactions, or due to the arising need to create more balance by shifting attention within their own lives?
I could have written much of the above as I have a similar situation with a close friend of some 30 years, which recently changed when I let out an egoic statement along the lines of "I can no longer deal with you through your pain body". I had a realisation that we had been relating all those years through our pain bodies, me in the role of healer, ignoring the need of my own healing.
I now find little in common with this person except history of course, so I don't relate/react as I used to and this has been noticed as a "you have changed so much" remark, to which I can only agree really, and try to be as loving as possible without my ego getting involved in her pain body again.

I have also noticed a withdrawal from other ego driven friendships, and in general preferring my own company in quietness. Additionally the falling away of attachment to much external world, has meant I get little or no excitement from future events such as travel, holidays, dinner parties and so on, in fact where I am could almost as easily be described as depression, except I have an inner peace, and all my joy (or pain) comes from the present.

Speaking my truth in a loving, caring and compassionate way is what I am striving to do these days.
“I would like my life to be a statement of love and compassion--and where it isn't, that's where my work lies.”
― Ram Dass

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by TemporalDissonance » Wed Jul 03, 2013 2:03 am

Thanks azurewalking, Sighclone, merlin41,

I can't help but to emphasize with your stories. I find myself currently a little sensitive towards very heavy pain bodies and negative egos to the point where I found myself excusing myself and leaving a friend mid-meeting because my friend carried an exceptionally heavy pain body that day. I literally felt the pain body. Despite my friend pretending that "everything is fine", I knew right away things were not right and inquired. Another friend has already expressed concerns that I prefer my own company more than others these days. To him, I shows signs of depression. Yet, I am very much at peace. I cannot help but to recognize the egoic relationships I have had in the past. Each carries with them a different projected "image"/ego of how "I" should be. Perhaps, there is the fear and ego in not wanting to "confront" this changes directly through interactions. While I would like to continue my relationships, I understand that they will change over time. Some becoming "closer" and others may not.

However, my sense (or perhaps really my desire) is to reach a point where I could have been a space for my friend with the heavy ego. Being a space for that heavy pain body. Here is where I now understand what "being compassionate" may really mean.
azurewalking wrote:II am wondering if anyone has noticed the need to lessen their interactions with particular people, whether it was due to the nature of interactions, or due to the arising need to create more balance by shifting attention within their own lives?
It may be both. There is a shift definitely. As time goes on, this "shift" may lessen, but initially, it may be a big one for some. Overtime, through more interactions with particular people, you know whether you will be seeing them more or less. For me, a few close people are heavily identified with their egos and attached to specific egoic images of me. They may be well served at one point, but those who are more open to the shifting in me, our relationship has blossom in unexpected ways.

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Re: How did your interactions transitioned and changed after

Post by smiileyjen101 » Wed Jul 03, 2013 2:23 am

TD said: However, my sense (or perhaps really my desire) is to reach a point where I could have been a space for my friend with the heavy ego. Being a space for that heavy pain body. Here is where I now understand what "being compassionate" may really mean.
As with all things, one can only accept, change, or remove yourself from the situation, so you made a sane choice TD.

Yes, maybe in time and with growing confidence you will be able to hold your own resonance - energy frequency in and amid all manner of other energy resonances. I find the quickest path to compassion is to say 'what would love do now?' Love would not align with the biatch sessions or victimhood - fear energies, but maintain the equilibrium of gratitude and generosity. Its a balance that cannot be untoppled by drama, nor made uncomfortable by it.


You've made me pick up to read a book that a friend gave me, The Wisdom of Compassion - stories of remarkable encounters and timeless insights by His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Victor Chan. I'll let you know if I find any pearls in it :D
Our rights start deep within our humanity; they end where another's begin~~ SmileyJen
http://www.balancinginfluences.com

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