Not sure exactly, in tangibility, what that means, but I have been faced lately with some pretty good examples of what it looks like to NOT have respect for self, or others, and I don’t like what that looks like. Obviously I have seen myself in a mirror, and I’m grateful for the glimpse, and I want to make a difference in how I show up.
I can see perhaps that if one doesn’t have respect for one’s self, it’s hard to feel respect for another. I have long thought that I had more respect for others than I have for myself, but I’m wondering if that is not possible…unless it is. I can’t tell yet.
I’m again wrestling with this and as usual, thinking out loud with a few of my beloveds.
In thinking about that, I notice that it IS easier for me to respect others than it is for me to respect myself. I can put myself more easily in anothers’ shoes, have more compassion for others, show up for others, be to others what they sometimes can’t be for themselves.
I can clean your house much more willingly and easily than I can clean my own. What IS that? I don’t think it’s unique to me.
I’ve always believed that we were there as mirrors for one another. That when I can’t believe in myself, I can believe in YOU….and maybe counting on that being true in reverse.
When I REALLY look into my own eyes, looking in a mirror, I am always brought to tears by the love and goodness that I see there — by the desire to be good — by the truth of my generosity and depth of commitment to being a force for good in the world — by my commitment to and love for not only my family — though that is deep and abiding — but also to anyone whose life I encounter with any depth of connection.
In our MATERIAL world, I have been accused of being generous to a fault, of being co-dependent, wanting more for others than they want for themselves, of giving myself away to the detriment of myself — of wanting to be loved so much that I do just that — of trying to prove my worth by giving myself away, thereby not having self respect…
turning my desire to give and be good into something not good.
In the MATERIAL world, where fear reigns that there’s only so much to go around, that one must preserve one’s own strength, take care of one’s own need, that self is more important than Self, that may be true. In the MATERIAL world, these things matter.
I remember reading, several decades ago, the story by Chaim Potok, The Chosen. I will never forget the description there of a man who worked himself “gray with fatigue” as described by his concerned son, and who replied to his son’s concern something like, “My entire lifespan is merely a blink of God’s eye. I am happy to wear myself out for this worthy cause that I so believe in.”
He took no fear for his own well-being, but worked furiously for what he believed in. I believe in loving people. I believe in sharing all I have to make a difference, no matter how small — and in so doing, I often lose sight of my own laundry stacking high, or stacks of paperwork vying for my attention. My eyes literally glaze over when I have to face those things. It is here that I notice that I don’t have enough self-respect to pick up after myself, or tackle the papers taunting me from my piling systems. That’s where the matter meets the grist…
Things that do not MATTER in a spiritual realm simply do matter in this MATERIAL world, and I have a hard time plugging in to that. It seems that I hang out in spiritual reality, and can’t often bring myself to give a rip about what should matter to me.
I am reminded of descriptions of the authors of The Power of Now and Power vs Force — of what it’s like to be “enlightened” — of how difficult it is for them to care about daily things. That they would be content to sit drooling on a park bench in a diaper…not able to attach importance to earthly things. I thought then that I didn’t want to be enlightened, it if meant being so helpless in the material world — and yet, that’s how it seems here to me now.
I have a hard time caring at all what I eat – or if I eat – until my hunger kicks in and makes me find the first thing available. Now, if there’s someone else to cook for, I’m all over it.
I could care less what I wear; it’s a DRAG to have to figure it out everyday
Taking supplements or meds, or drinking water (or whether or not it’s pure enough) is hard for me to remember or care about
Brushing my teeth is hard for me to do – not automatic like it seems to be for others
Exercising is not an option in this state of mind
Fun? what’s that? I know I love it once I’m there, but getting to the ocean, or playing my ukulele or painting or writing new books just seems too hard to get to.
Sounds like depression, doesn’t it? But it doesn’t feel that way. Those things just don’t feel important to me.
What I’m thinking, after reading this, is the divine dichotome – While what’s true in SPIRIT is always true, if one chooses to play in MATTER, one needs to choose IN.
THAT is the crux, isn’t it?
I am beginning to see why it’s important to have beliefs. If you don’t believe in anything, you don’t care. That is, I don’t believe in any religious dogma. I only believe in good. I believe it’s ALL good, nobody dies, and there’s nothing to fear.
So I’m not afraid of Monsanto
I’m not afraid of poisonous water
I’m not afraid of McDonald’s
I’m not afraid of dying and going to hell
I’m MORE afraid of hanging out here longer than I have to
Because I can’t wait to get to heaven
AND I’m noticing that by WAITING, by not taking time to play
I’m putting off heaven….
I live in Paradise, for God’s Sake!
I am surrounded by love. I love people and they love me. They don’t care what I’m wearing,
I am busy. I do spend my time playing in things that do matter to me. I love what I do on a daily basis.
So what else is there?
It’s true that when I suck it up and pick it up, I do feel better in my space. I ENJOY order and beauty. So eventually, I pick it all up and put it all away.
I do keep my ukulele near my computer so when I get bored here, I can click onto YouTube and strum a few chords to some funky old tune. I do enjoy that.
I stay young by hanging out with a select number of little ones. Children who keep me humble and honest. Children who remind me to respond, not react. Children who snuggle in under my wings and love being with me, because I love being with them. Whether those are angel wings or wings of a dumb cluck doesn’t seem to make much difference to them. And they should know.