Last year, I called one of my friends who live in Pakistan after a long time. I remember it was her birthday, so it was one of the reasons which made our call possible. I guess the call went for more than an hour. Of course, we were curious about each other’s lives. I remember, I took some time to rant about my life in Sweden. I remember sharing my baggage of complaints regarding all the things around me. The weather, family, friends, my self-judgments and everything I could think of, I shared with her. I told her how tired I have been, and I am not capable enough because of this and that.
She laughed and asked – Wow, looks like the whole world is after you?
I couldn’t answer that! I felt embarrassed in fact when she asked. Maybe, it is not good to feel this way? I said.
I can see your feelings of ‘being a victim and everyone is responsible for your situation’ and the way you are taking responsibility is through ‘guilt’ which is equally problematic, this is just self-abandonment. Trust me, it is our national problem i.e. not taking responsibility for how we feel, we desperately want someone to realize our pain (She said jokingly).
We talked for a long time. We discussed different patterns of self-abandonment and how much we need somebody to be angry at!After that talk, I learned how my goals are being procrastinated due to all these blockages of different emotions. I realized that they need attention, but in a different way.
She mentioned ‘man’s search of meaning’ by Victor Frankl. The book is about how one can attain freedom of mind even when the body is chained. Victor writes his personal experiences in concentration camps where he sees his dreadful time as a discovery of his inner potential and peace of mind. He says in his book;
“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
All of these was interesting to hear. I listened to many talks, read articles and some books and found that I was inflicted by old wounds inside me which need healing.
Then I embarked on the journey to discover the truth than walking into the hollowness of depressing and negative thoughts. I wanted to because this was only affecting my relationships and career.
Whenever some emotion arose, I took an opportunity to explore it. I tried to feel it and question it. Next, I learned to take responsibility for what I am feeling then blaming someone for causing it. I never expected that It will open the doors of unworthiness. It slowly made me realize that these feeling are not true. But, on an honest note, it doesn’t work all the time. I think I should practice more and more of being present to avoid getting gulped up by my feelings.
When I read the power of now by Eckart Tolle, I get to know that only moment where I can save myself is the present moment. It helped my stressing thoughts to fade away and focus on my potential instead. I started to validate my feelings and told myself that I am enough.
Every painful moment was an opportunity to nurture. It also made me realize that I do not want to waste my time anymore in hurting myself emotionally. I want to find my power which is inside me.
Of course, I do not disagree that we are surrounded by many reasons which bring suffering. But I wanted to realize that the suffering, which is in shape of anger, sadness, jealousy, is powerful enough to block the unlimited joy inside us. We only need to train ourselves because what mind always produces doesn’t have to be true all the time. I still have a hard time understanding the self-abandonment because I still cannot help my human expectation from the world and myself at times. Sometimes I say
‘I am not Mother Teresa who have to be kind, understanding and forgiving.’
Which reminds me of a joke.
A priest in the church is holding a talk. He emphasizes forgiveness.
He says – To find peace in life we need to forgive others. How many of you have forgiven everyone?
One old woman raises her hand in the audience.
Priest gets happy to see that someone is like that.
He asks that woman – How did you forgive everyone?
She says – It was easy. I outlived those bitches!
The joke explains itself that how frustrated the woman was all her life. She was not truly happy but a blamer!