Noticing when we can see ourselves in others is a helpful approach for deepening our own sense of peace and happiness.
Sogyal Rinpoche writes in the Tibetan Book of Living and Dying that each person can be represented as a diamond in a vast universal fabric, where each diamond has countless faces, mirroring each and every other diamond.
This idea on reflecting each other can be seen when we are feeling uncomfortable with and thus judge another’s personality or behaviour. Our mirror gets bigger and clearer when we begin judging other people with a similar personality or behaviour.
When we emotionally judge another’s personality or behaviour, very often our judgements are a form of self-confession. This holds particularly true when we strongly believe or are attached to our judgements of others. Perhaps our statements about the other person(s) are true, but more importantly, they can hold true for us as well.
For example, if we are often angry at people for being ‘too arrogant’, this statement can mirror our own self-confession of ‘I am also arrogant’.
Noticing that we have made a negative judgement about other(s) is the first step inviting us to go deeper. The second step is to turn our judgement around and ask ourselves if ‘I am also that?’ As in the above example, ‘Am I also arrogant?’
Notice how the body responds to this question and allow yourself time for answers to come up. Maybe we have been arrogant in adolescent or perhaps we still can be arrogant in certain situations.
“Sometimes it’s a past life”
Sometimes the reason stems back to a past life. Again using the above example, maybe we have been arrogant in a past life and somewhere in our consciousness we are still angry at ourselves for having hurt people through our arrogant actions.
When we recognise and acknowledge that what we dislike or are uncomfortable with in another, is also within us, this then opens the door to allow us to heal it in ourselves.
“Seeing what we dislike in another, invites us to heal it in ourselves”
For example, by deepening our-self awareness we see that we have been arrogant and we are still angry at ourselves for this. In the past life example, we can feel and or see the arrogance we had and how that caused others suffering, and sense on some level that we still haven’t forgiven ourselves for this.
By recognising our own behaviour and getting in touch with all our feelings, we can release them and the emotional energy that drove our behaviour including the need to negatively judge others. Consequently our uncomfortable feelings about people with this same negativity also disappear. For how we feel on the inside is mirrored to the outside world.
For example, I am no longer angry at myself for being arrogant in (this life or past life) and now I am not angry when I see others being arrogant.
“Ending the attraction”
Ironically when we free ourselves of our own negative feelings and behaviour, we no longer tend to attract this same negativity from others. For example, as we become clear of arrogance, people will mirror this back to us by not being arrogant with us. And if someone does come across as arrogant, we can respond to them rather than emotionally react to their behaviour, that is, their arrogance doesn’t trigger us.
Use this mirroring principle whenever you catch yourself judging others, to give yourself an opportunity to uncover and clear any emotional distortions you may possibly have, allowing you to become lighter and happier in life.
Published: October 2015