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Tuesday, February 1, 2011
Assumptions and Agreements
It is so easy to assume that others see the world the way we do. Things seems so clear to us...what has happened...what it means...how we feel. I mean, it's all so real to us. How could others not get what we see so clearly?
Buzzer here for wrong answer.
And buzzer again for big mistake.
And the reason that this is so is that each of us has a unique history.
I know…that’s truly a duh statement. We all know it.
But somehow we forget to remember it. We forget because we are so entrenched in our world and the lessons we have learned and, even more importantly, the lessons we have not. We operate from our own set of expectations, hopes and dreams, including the pain and hurt we have endured and we know what we like and want in a response and when we do not receive it and when it isn’t expressed in the language or tone that we prefer, we make assumptions and we suffer.
But the world is actually a more interesting place when we are open to these wildly varying interpretations of reality and accompanying feelings than it would be if everyone could and world see the world the way we do.
And we would make much greater progress in our relationships if we allowed for new (and different) insights and interpretations.
And we might actually gain new perspectives if we stepped outside ourselves, observing our reactions and responses.
And it could be intriguing to imagine the energy emanating from the other person as he expresses his feelings.
And it would be loving to remember that anything negative coming at us is coming from pain.
And if we are going to assume at all, it is always wise to assume the highest and most understandable motivation for the other's actions.
And if we meet every dissonance with Love and Compassion (for ourselves and others), we will surely find our way to some peace and harmony.
Lots of reasons to move beyond our initial and automatic default reactions.
Now, I am not suggesting that we be less than real about how we feel because being authentic is ESSENTIAL in this undertaking.
I speak my truth
So I can keep my heart free to fly.
I listen to your truth
So you can join me.
Mystic Marks: Bookmarks for the Soul
It is in this joining together of our truths that we can find a very beautiful and very practical solution to our dilemma, the Agreement.
When both parties can listen to each other with an open heart and the singular goal of understanding the other (Help me understand…is a beautiful way to express it), undoubtedly an Agreement can be reached.
If each person tells the other what feels comfortable and satisfying to him, somehow a solution always appears. Probably because the actions are coming from a loving intention to find a way to navigate what has previously been a cause of suffering and to meet the needs of both persons involved in the conflict.
Without this very conscious intention to find a meeting place, tempers flare, feelings are hurt. Things do not end well.
But, with it, they always do and the agreements can always be changed or renegotiated whenever necessary.
It’s such a simple but profound way to take loving care of ourselves and others. And so very powerful and effective. Paying attention to others along with ourselves, understanding their vulnerabilities and honoring their dreams seems a rather small price to pay for that wonderful feeling of consonance and connection.