Sometimes the obvious is the last to be seen. Take the case of our favorite scapegoats. No, you would not see them for what they really are.They are so well disguised and rationalized, that it is hard to recognize that they are only our favorite stories of blame.
It may be the job that you detest, but must keep, or your outstanding EMIs on your new house, or your spouse. Or your lack of your own home, job or partner. The hurt you experienced as a child, feeling unappreciated by your father or feeling unloved by your mother. Or your unfulfilled dream of becoming a wildlife photographer. Or a debilitating disease.
Before you get shocked at the suggestion, let me assure you that I am not trivializing any emotional charge or the severity of the challenge that may be associated with any life circumstance or relationship. Nor do I doubt that persistent and exhausting work may have gone into fighting its hold.
However, there is a danger of remaining submerged in the story and never rising up for anything other than a few gulps of air. Momentarily reaching for lifelines and then sinking right back in. Stepping out of victim-hood is only the first step. But if you have tried any of the wonderful healing techniques available out there solely to address the emotional hurts or beliefs associated with your ‘favorite story’, then you may find yourself revisiting the drama again and again, albeit with different aspects, intensities and at different depths.
I call the most persistent challenge your scapegoat, because it is held responsible for all your discontent in life, whereas the problem lies deeper than that. It lies in our attachment and fixation with stories. Being unwilling to look for the raw truth, what we do is we try to write more appealing stories. So we work on re-framing perceptions, rewriting beliefs, forgiveness and so on.
This in fine in the interim, to arrive at a point where you can cope better and have the strength to go on. After releasing the need to be right, the need to defend any point of view, all righteousness, and the belief that one’s history dictates one’s future and such, you can go deeper.
To get to the core of the matter, you have to go beyond all the excuses, beyond the entire web of stories.
What has been studied theoretically, needs to be realized experientially; namely that one is an infinite field of pure potential. That one can never really be hurt. For that matter, one can’t die, because one was never born. Your idea of yourself is simply a ‘Story of I‘.
Healers, therapists, activists, ‘trouble-shooting consultants’, patients, etc… need to be particularly carefully about their attachment and buy-in to such labels. The greater the attachment and seriousness around these terms, the more likely your continual finding of aspects that need to be fixed.
While taking the route of clearing/healing/counselling, it is important to retain an awareness of true nature as well. And if one has not been able to drop into the effortless space of being, then it is equally important to be honest about it and work with processes until required. One without the other is a recipe for incompletion. As Eckhart Tolle says, “You need time, until you realize that you do not need time”
If you ever cautioned a child to be truthful, perhaps you said, “When you tell one lie, you need to tell another to hold it in place, and then yet another… until you are trapped in a web of lies. Sooner or later, you will be found out. Be honest and truthful. It keeps things easy and simple.”
We adults need the same reminder. No matter how complex, sticky and challenging your web of stories may have become, instead of snipping at the strands(symptoms) alone, consciously direct the use of your tools and practices to access fundamental truth.
Instead of healing only the symptoms, let us reclaim true wholeness.