You can hold on to the hope that you are still a victim of the world that you see; that events hold some value in themselves that do not come from what you place upon them. And as long as you choose to deny the world, you cannot be free.
For the mind that chooses, in even a small part, to perceive itself as a victim of its world of experience, remains powerless.
What I learned
I am not a victim of the world I see is a familiar lesson. I have been studying this lesson for a very long time. Over the years I have peeled that onion until I am nearly to its core. I understand that I call to me everything that makes up my life. There is no one to blame and I waste my time looking for the guilty party. I also understand that my experience of my life is a choice. Never is the experience of it outside my ability to choose. There are no exceptions to either one of these facts.
I have also been practicing this lesson so I am generally willing to be fully aware of what I am choosing. Victimization is so pervasive in the ego thought system that I have not yet been able to move completely out of it, but I tend to notice when I am in it. I can then give my willingness to seeing the situation differently and so become stronger in my belief that I am never a victim of the world.
Sometimes victimization is not so obvious and I have to be very alert to its more subtle forms. Once I begin to look, however, it shows itself. For instance, this morning I checked my bank account to see if my commission check was in it yet. Since I get paid commissions on my accounts and they vary from month to month, I never know how much money I will make. Generally it is within a certain range, sometimes a little more, sometimes a little less. About once a year it is much lower than usual because it is affected by the seasons as well as other things.
This month turned out to be a small commission month. It is always a shock to see such a small check deposited in my account, and it brings up for me my fears of not being able to support myself, my belief in lack. At first I just felt the unease and move on since it is not going to devastate me, but then I realized that not to look at this with the Holy Spirit would be a lost opportunity. So once again I am able to look at my belief that I am a victim of the world I see. I think I can only be happy if I make a certain amount of money so I believe my happiness is dependent on my paycheck. I think I am safe only if I am financially secure and so am victim to the world of finances. I think that I am worthy only if I am successful in my job and the measure of success is the size of my commission check, and so when it is small I feel less than.
Whew! It is amazing how thoroughly I still believe in victimization. No matter how much I reason with myself that this is just one month out of twelve and that I still have enough money and will not starve or even be truly uncomfortable, I still feel like a victim. And my ego mind starts frantically searching for the responsible party. I notice uncharitable thoughts about my competitors and customers who quit buying. I notice thoughts about my boss and my company that are wild attempts to find them responsible. I even notice angry thoughts toward the people I owe money to as if my discomfort is their fault for wanting their money. In my fearful mind I see mother nature as working against me. I sell chemicals for water treatment and this rainy month has meant far less water used and so far less chemicals used.
At one time I would have felt the panic, looked for someone to blame and focused my attention there. Now I just notice what is going on in the ego mind. I notice the fear, the blame, projections, and anything else that pops up. I notice it and ask the Holy Spirit to show me another way to see. I notice and become willing to allow all of it. I notice and am willing to accept the situation just as it is. This is a very different way to be.
It is as if the thoughts and feelings wash over me and then drain away. I feel the emotions, but at the same time, I am watching and witnessing and that part of my mind is not involved in the emotional reaction. That part of my mind knows that I called to myself with my beliefs and desires exactly the circumstances I am experiencing. It also knows that seeing the situation as a problem and fearful was just a decision I made and is not the only decision available to me. The witness knows that this is a neutral event and that all of those emotions stem from my decision to give value to certain ideas and beliefs, including the belief that I protect myself when I make someone else to blame or when I give my energy to controlling the situation.
I get to decide how I want to be in this situation. I can stay in fear and see myself as victim to the world, or I can use this moment to remember the truth. And in fact, just noticing what is happening is helping me to wake up to the truth. This noticing is breaking the old cycle of thinking, and allowing new thought patterns to emerge. My day is filled with opportunities to do this and each one is a blessing if I care to use it as such.
All quotes are used by kind permission of the Shanti Christo Foundation. To buy a copy of this profound book visit their website at www.shantichristo.com. I invite your thoughts and comments.