By Power Living Yogi Keenan Crisp
How well do you communicate? With colleagues? Your significant other? Family and friends?
We generally communicate according to our own interpretation of an event/subject, based on deep-seated belief systems and it is rare that two people when conversing are actually speaking from the very same set of beliefs.
It’s a wonder that we can communicate at all.
What we generally do is speak from a predisposition and assume that the other is really on the same page as us.
To embrace a relationship as an opportunity for enlightenment may sound far fetched, but applying at least one of these principles will at the very least help to render your relationships more functional and in essence… spiritual.
Principle 1: Acceptance Of Others As They Are
Too often we judge others and try to change them, making them into who we think they should be. We expect others should…readmorehere
accept us as we are but yet often don’t reciprocate that wish. If someone criticizes me, the mantra that I use is, “I am that I am, be as you be”. If you can’t accept another as they are, from what high ground are you judging them from? From what belief systems are you acting (or reacting) from? As Jesus said, how can you say to your brother, ‘Brother, let me take out the speck that is in your eye,’ when you yourself do not see the log that is in your own eye? In understanding yourself, your bound to understand others and thereby find acceptance rather than judgment of another.
Principle 2: Compassion For The Unhappy
During my extensive travels there came a point that I realized that often I lacked compassion for the unhappy. Particularly for those I typically labeled as “dickheads”, whom I had very little time for, often judging them (compounding there illusive sense of self) and rejecting them (separating myself from them with pride and arrogance). People who are rude, arrogant, riddled with greed or anger etc are in suffering. Rather than giving them a hard time, we could disregard them if necessary… or even better, offer them love and positive regard. Rather than building resentment in a relationship demonstrate empathy and have compassion for another particularly if they’re not happy. “Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them humanity cannot survive,” says the Dali Lama.
Principle 3: The Power of Presence
It takes only one person to remain present to diffuse any tension in a relationship. When we fight and argue within our relationships, it’s purely a reflection of both parties being un-present. We are often triggered into negative core beliefs that we have taken on from our earliest days when we started to try and make some sense of our place in this strange and intriguing world. I’ve noted time and time again how many of our students at our yoga schools (including myself) express that most of their life they are acting from a self sabotaging belief that they are not good enough, with a multitude of areas they feel they are limited in e.g., unworthy, underserving, unlovable, unsafe etc. To diffuse tension it only takes one person to jump off the merry-go-round, and act from a place of self awareness, and not get caught up in their limiting beliefs, or even excessive positive beliefs, where pride and arrogance may take place. Someone in the relationship must remain balanced, or neutral. That way the power of presence can be used to diffuse any tense situation.
Principle 4: Just listen, but without all those interruptions, comparisons and judgments. Just listen!
It’s so refreshing at times just to listen. This doesn’t mean stop talking, though that can be super sweet when possible, but not if it worries the other person. How can we be happy if another is not? Turn off the TV, close the lid on the computer, and if you dare, switch off the phone (oh bliss). Enlightened relationship.
With the practice of at least one of these principles it will be possible to have enlightened relationships with colleagues, friends, relatives, partners, children… with everyone and everything. Relationship then becomes a vehicle for spiritual growth, until that day that we step into our highest potential of love and light!