I believe that the journey one embarks on to understand who and what they are; is one that could be classed as an individual journey. There will of course be many people who one encounters during this journey. And the amount of time that these people will be around for will depend on various factors.
Some could be around for what seems like forever and others could be around for what seems like a moment. And with a blink of an eye they are gone and exist as a memory. Perhaps this is a pleasant memory or maybe it’s an unpleasant memory.
However, each relationship that one has will carry with it the opportunity to understand oneself a little better. The relationships will enable one to see parts that have yet to be realised and integrated or a part that needs to be processed and released. This will allow one to go to the next stage or their growth and development as a human being.
One begins to see life not only in a literal manner, but also symbolically. Here relationships will not merely be interpreted and understood by what has happened. They will begin to be understood in terms of what there deeper meaning could be.
Leading to Questions such as: what might his relationship be showing me? What am I holding onto that no longer serves me? Although some of the answers that one gets from these questions could be classed as negative; they each contain the seed for one’s personal growth.
People will often be seen as messengers or actors and as people that bring with them a gift. During the experience, it might seem to be more like a curse than a gift. Just as we have the potential to be messengers and actors to the people we come into contact with.
The Inner World
To see life this way requires the awareness of one’s inner world. And this inner world includes our feelings, thoughts, emotions, images, and sensations. By becoming conscious of all that resides here; one will be able to bridge the gap between the so called outer and inner world.
This awareness will allow one to see the symbolic nature of what happens in their life; matching it up with what they are experiencing inside. Conflict that exists within can then be seen as equally existing without and vice versa.
One will also begin to see how important it is to protect this space. The awareness of this space will enable one to know what their needs are; if they feel compromised and are going against their own truth.
It also leads one to being able to emotionally regulate themselves; instead of ones emotions taking over and looking for external means to deal with them.
Part of the journey of self realisation is in the forming healthy boundaries; this means one will achieve an understanding of where they start and end and where another starts and ends. By having healthy boundaries one will understand what is theirs and what is another’s. What one is responsible for and what is another’s responsibility.
And through owning what is coming up in ones inner world; one will begin to own what is going on there. This means that one no longer blindly projects their conflict onto other people and the outside world.
Having boundaries also allows one to be an individual. This means that one’s sense of self is no longer caught up in another person, place or thing. Or in looking for wholeness externally; where it cannot be found.
We are all born into a ‘tribe’. And the first tribe that one has is usually the family that they were born into. It then extends out into the world, and can include many different groups.
From the very beginning one will be conditioned by the other tribe members and as a result one will come to see the world as the tribe does. This has the potential to define who one should be, what is possible and who one is.
Ones whole sense of survival then becomes associated with the tribe. And because of this association, any experience of disapproval or rejection can create incredible amounts of fear and anxiety should one go against the tribe’s wishes.
This is where the importance of personal power (self esteem) comes in to the equation. For if one has no personal power and only has power based on the tribe, it is highly unlikely that one will ever go against the tribes views and beliefs about the world.
One has to develop a sufficient amount of their own power, in order to stand up for what they believe and to follow the path that only they can know. I would describe this as bringing the heart, mind and body together. This is the body’s power, the hearts vision and the minds planning abilities.
Choosing to follow one’s own path will inevitably lead to the rejection of certain people within the tribe or perhaps the whole tribe. This will test ones commitment and strength to what they hold true. It does not mean that one no longer has the support of a tribe and that they are now on their own.
What it means is that one will find other tribes and that the people in these other tribes will be able to show the support and validation that the previous tribes could not offer.
The path that one takes can only be known by the individual. Another will be able to offer inspiration, support and to be a catalyst. These people can act like a mirror; reflecting back what one is unaware off.
And the saying ‘everyone is a teacher and a student’ is applicable here. This shows that it is not just people with certain credentials and statuses that can make a difference to ones life.
So Is One Really Alone?
So does this mean that one is alone in this world? I don’t believe so, I think that what this actually means is one is connected to life itself. Instead of being constantly caught up in the ego minds ideas and perceptions of life and believing that these things are reality; one becomes the observer of these aspects.
One begins to understand that more and more of what they desire actually resides within and does not exist in the world. And that it is only through the identification to the negative or traumatised ego that causes one to see otherwise.
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Oliver J R Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.