Are We Created Equal?
As far as status, opportunity and resources go, we are certainly not equal. Yet, as far as our essence or spirit is concerned there is one great equalizer:
Opportunities and choices are often confused, but they are quite different. Everyone, no matter their station in life, makes choices from moment to moment. The choices they make can come from their Big Self—based upon love—or their Little Self—based upon fear.
So, what precisely do we mean by Big Self and Little Self?
Big Self will only put energy into peaceful interactions; Little Self succumbs to violent tactics and bullying.
Big Self will consider words carefully before speaking them so as to avoid hurting people, while Little Self lashes out, spewing criticism and judgments.
Big Self respects and values others as sentient beings rather than a means to an end, but Little Self has no qualms about discarding, using or trampling on others to serve their own needs.
Big Self quietly endures the discomfort of feeling angry or scared without dumping on others. On the contrary, Little Self habitually seeks to release their own pain by acting out through any means possible.
Big Self realizes that their personal choices determine the situations they find themselves in, and therefore they do not cast blame. Little Self blames everyone around them to avoid the work required to make amends or improve the situation. The very act of taking full responsibility for their actions gives Big Self a feeling of worthiness and peace. Little Self, on the other hand, only feels self-pity when called upon to own their behavior.
The more we connect with our Big Self the stronger our tendencies become for positive action.
Our Big Self can even learn to comfort and nurture our Little Self, recognizing that it is not about self-blame, but rather understanding that in each moment we can choose the higher road that benefits both ourselves and others.
I appreciate the wisdom of the following statement:
“My most formidable enemy is a man named
Mahandas K. Ghandi, with him I seem to have
very little influence.”
~ Mahandas K. Ghandi
I understand his words as a reference to the inherent difficulty of taking actions that are in alignment with our Big Self in spite of the fearful promptings of our Little Self. Challenging ourselves to make sacrifices for the greater good may cause us initial hardship. In fact, it may cause us enough discomfort that taking the low road seems very inviting. Yet it can also lead to unbelievable joy and superb achievement on our life journey, and at the end of the day we can see ourselves in the mirror with a feeling of love.
Accepting that we all carry within us this dual aspect leads us to ask one very important question:
How can we strengthen our connection with our Big Selves?
Here are some suggestions for use during times of confusion or duress:
1) Bring your palms together at your heart center and press the back of your thumbs against your breastbone. Close your eyes and practice breathing slow, even breaths into your heart center while visualizing yourself holding hands with whoever you are at odds with while being surrounded with golden/white light. Know that this person may even be your Self.
2) Close your eyes and bring your palms together. Use your middle and index fingers to lightly touch the Third Eye Point between your eyebrows. Take long, slow deep breaths while concentrating on this point. Imagine your Big Self embracing your Little Self and filling them with light.
Take some time to create your own simple strategies for calling forth your Big Self. Write down your ideas and visualize yourself using them in situations that you know can trigger reactions from your fearful Little Self. Be creative, you can always change or replace them as you discover what works with your personality.
Author: Kimberly Deutsch
Apprentice Editor: Toby Israel/Editor: Renée Picard
Photo: Holly Lay at Flickr