Spiritual Practice Activity Week 5
This week we are going to really examine the role ego is playing in our lives. It's much more than just positive thoughts versus negative thoughts this week. We are still going to monitor our thoughts, breathe, sit in silence (please lengthen your time by 5 minutes) and do all the things we've been doing.. but in addition, we are going to really pay attention to our interactions with others. What are our intentions as we speak, write, talk to others? When we are in traffic or a long line, what is our emotional state like? When we are frustrated with a service or a person.. where is our intention? Is it still aimed at finding compassion for that person, for yourself, or is that piece of yourself easily derailed by Ego? Are we giving to others to get something in return? Are we hoping to be right or superior to others in some way? Are we placing expectations on others? Or even on Spirit and ourselves which are backfiring and stunting our growt?. Or are we acting from love for the sake of love, from compassion, understanding, patience.. where are we acting from? Literally, this week we examine thoughts, actions, words and feelings.
Re: Spiritual Practice Activity Week 5
I'm going to share an experience from my week. I am so glad that this practice has been foremost in my mind this week!!!!!
Ryann, my 13 year old daughter, was humiliated at school by her teacher on Tuesday. She was singled out in a way that resulted in her entire class staring at her and laughing at her because of the teacher's actions. When I received the phone call at work from her step-mom that she was sobbing after just getting off the bus and why... this emotion I cannot fully explain came over me. Fury, rage, shock.. and something more.. this visceral need to protect my child from harm.. I literally felt like a caged mama lion and wanted to roar and attack. WHEW.. it was intense.
I left work RIGHT THEN.. in the middle of my day and drove to her school. I was trembling with adrenaline.. ready to go in and blast everyone in my path.. I could barely contain it. I called my mentor for help.. I haven't felt an emotion like this in ages and KNEW that I needed to calm down. I recognized the need to protect Ryann.. but the anger.. I knew I HAD to get a grip on that before I acted on it. I breathed in and out for the entire drive.
Fortunately, when I arrived at the school, the teacher had gone for the day and the principal was in a meeting. I stood in the hallway breathing and swaying until I was calm.. literally right when I gained my composure, the meeting ended and the principal was available. I recounted the story to her along with my disappointment and my expectation that this was a one time mistake ... she urged me to speak to Ryann's teacher in a conference. Whew.. I was not satisfied.. I could NOT completely let this go.
I meditated the best I could and breathed A LOT. I was back at the school the next day. I was angry. But, had come to the place where I could articulate to some degree that my intention was to ensure Ryann's well-being. The conversation with the teacher went okay.. but my anger was not completely in check. I was tense when I left. Thinking of going farther with the complaint.. but, about 20 minutes later, I felt a shift. I felt that Ryann was well, I felt that the teacher had spoken to her and had made a sincere apology. I could FEEL this teacher and her intentions to do better for Ryann. My anger faded. And, at that point I felt as much compassion for that teacher as I did for Ryann in that situation. Today, I will reach out to the teacher to apologize for my anger yesterday and my inability to view her compassionately in those moments.
I see that my anger lasted too long. I also see that when it comes to my children's well-being that some of my emotion is other than anger. I see that I was able to feel compassion for the offending party... my hope is that as I continue to practice, the anger will last a shorter period of time and that my compassion will come sooner and more easily.
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