how are you? no, I mean really, how are you doing right now?
We all share the same needs, and we all suffer the same way when those needs are not met.
We all need food,
We all need clothing,
We all need shelter,
We all need love and acceptance, and a feeling of accomplishment and success.
Why don’t we see these similar needs in the people around us?
I think we cannot see our shared humanity because
- we keep looking at our differences
- we are too wrapped up in our own lives to see the other person’s life clearly
The job of the brain is to look for differences, to judge the situation, and then to act in an intelligent way in that situation.
So it feels natural to look for differences and to judge people
In order to survive, we have always had to do this, and we still do at times
But humanity is more than just survival.
We are capable of, and need to be, so much more than just survival!
How do we find that ‘more’ that we are?
By looking with the heart instead of the head.
The head looks for differences and the heart looks for similarities.
Create your own path:
Tricky to do if you’ve never done it before
Easy to do once you know how
Here’s how it goes:
You’re at Walmart at the checkout counter. You look at the person who is serving you, look into their eyes, and ask them how they are doing today.
Ask how long their shift has been. Are they going home soon?
Has it been a long day?
You look at this person as a fellow human being who has all the needs you have, who is probably struggling with problems with family, money, time, fears etc.
In this small moment together, you enter into their heart with your heart, truly wanting to know if they are alright. It’s like you are sharing the difficulty of being human and wanting to know how they are fairing with it today. After all, you’re in it together, this thing called life.
This won’t be an involved conversation. In fact, it will be very simple. They’ll let you know how they are feeling right now and you’ll love and accept them in that moment of being human. And then you go on your way. 🙂
Now, in your more personal and close relationships, you do the same.
Look with your heart into their heart,
with the sincere desire to know how they are doing right now.
If your first response to anyone is always ‘how are you?’
that’s traveling south.
If your first response to anyone is to need something from them,
(maybe their help, support, understanding, love, money, approval)
that’s traveling north
Traveling south is looking for what you can give
Traveling north is looking for what you can get
The irony in this whole situation is that
if you come to a relationship in a spirit of giving, the other person will want to give to you.
If you come to a relationship in a spirit of wanting something, the other person will feel the need to protect and look after themselves, instead of giving to you.
It’s similar to what happens to a dog sometimes when he is swimming after a piece of wood in the water. As he pushes to grasp it, his movement in the water pushes it further away.
The concept is simple
Doing it can be tricky
The only way to succeed is to practice
and smile to yourself when you fail and say
I’ll do better next time 🙂
After all – if you’re not going to judge the other person, you also can’t judge yourself!
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