Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Defensiveness - The First Act of "Me"

Something "terrible" happened to a friend of mine recently. It's brought up a lot of emotion in me; anger, frustration, annoyance, defensiveness, hurt feelings, and quite honestly a good bit of rage. This terrible thing that happened to my friend was done to her by someone she loved, trusted, and worked tirelessly to support. And I think the reason I'm having such a reaction is that the person who did this terrible thing to my friend also did it to me.

The funny thing about this terrible thing, though, is that it was the very BEST thing that could have been done to me. It caused a huge shift in my awareness. It made me open my eyes to where and how I was selling myself out for someone else's love, approval and appreciation. It made me see that I was willing to do anything, against myself and other people, just so that I could maintain the illusion that I belonged, that I was someone, that I mattered, that I was important.

There have been moments of the most intense pain and sorrow during the journey from that moment to now, yet I wouldn't trade it for the world. I learned so much about my own falseness, my own inauthenticity, my own culpability in staying asleep and in supporting a system and an organization that was built on lies and manipulation and on keeping the wool pulled over peoples' eyes. In many ways, I realized that I was like Cypher from "The Matrix." I'd sell out everyone and everything I knew, just to stay asleep; to stay in the dream.

So why am I so indignant and defensive on behalf of my friend, when the same thing happens to her? What I can find is that I am running some kind of moral righteousness, some kind of superior position that says what happened to me is wrong. The person who did this to me is wrong and now this person is doing it to my friend, too. Someone should be warned about this person. Why isn't anyone taking action?

But there is a lie in what I wrote just now. What happened to me, although it felt wrong, was the most RIGHT thing that could have happened. It was my invitation to wake up, finally, once and for all, begin to wake up. So why do I hold on to wrongness, when what happened was so right? Because there is a sense of "self" in there that I am still clinging to. If I give up my sense of wrong, my belief that something wrong happened to me, what, then, happens to "me?"

Why, I might let any old thing happen to me and not defend it! OMG! I wouldn't defend "me." And then, what would happen to "me;" how would I be able to hang on to "me?" Without labeling right and wrong, how will I know "me?"

If I'm not the one who gets defensive when my friends get hurt, then who am I? If I don't get upset when I am "wronged" then who am I? If I don't react when those I love suffer, who am I?

And still inside there is a voice that says, "Yeah, but what about the person who did this? Are they to get away with it? Are they to get off scott free? Is no one to stop them from continuing to do these terrible things? Are they just to be allowed to keep doing this?"

I think the answer is yes, because as long as "I" continue to live believing that "I" am real, these "terrible" things and "terrible" people are necessary. They're the alarm clocks that keep chiming, "Hey, wake up!"

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