Posts Tagged ‘observe’

Observing presence

October 13, 2011

There are three of me.

One is the persona I wear for external exhibition. This is the one who has a tendency to act impulsively and to demonstrate emotional outbursts. She is also the one who guards and protects, reacting from an instinct as ancient as the stars.

One is the director of that persona. My external persona checks in often with the director, asking questions like “Is this an appropriate time for an expletive?” The director runs instantaneous, faster-than-light assessments that take into account all possible responses and all possible (as well as a few impossible) consequences of those responses. The director judges and determines right and wrong, good and bad, and what is worthy and a waste of my time. And my external persona complies with those directions . . . usually.

The third persona watches them both. It is the presence that I claim as eternal – the one who simultaneously has the wisdom of heaven and all the innocence of a child. This presence does not worry about outcomes, time, the past, or the future for it exists in the eternal present. This presence knows it will always exist.

Some would call it a higher self. This is the part of me that stands back and observes. While I might name this presence feminine, my experience is that being is genderless. This self observes me in all my witless gyrations and struggles to make it through life intact. All that am learning and becoming manifests within this eternal presence. Who I become in this life is who I will carry with me into the next existence. It does not matter who I used to be. What matters is who I am right now.

Sometimes I become four of me.

Occasionally, I become a presence that is a full integration of these three selves . . . a whole being who is completely present and fearless. For an instant, I am tremendously aware that I am this peaceful, tranquil being on the forever journey of becoming. In the next instant, I fragment again into my individual personas and watch myself remember who I truly am.

©2011 Barbara L. Kass

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outside presence

July 4, 2010

This presence is not about being outdoors. My outside presence is the presence who can watch me living, responding, feeling, and acting as if I were watching me on a movie screen. Unlike the movies, though, I am still connected while observing how I am being in the world. There is no disconnect involved . . . only distance.

I learned how to do this many years ago as a guided meditation to help resolve old childhood traumas. It is an excellent method because it keeps me from reliving the drama and recreating the same old emotions. And, because I am a compassionate observer (compassion totally rules this process), it is a safe place to give my child now what she could not get back then.

Lately, I have been working to bring this process into my adulthood on a more regular basis. I am acutely aware of how my thinking process contributes so much to my emotional way of being . . . many times the thought seems instantaneous with the emotional outbreak and I miss it. All emotions are okay to experience, but I ask myself this question: is my emotional response appropriate to the circumstances given everything I know? I especially take note of my reactions when another person has done something that causes me distress.

Since I am on a quest to feel good as often as possible and other people sometimes seem to be on a quest to thwart those efforts, I have to look at the distress signals carefully. They are appropriate to times when I might be in danger, when someone might cause me harm, and when someone is not being honest with me or trying to get me to be someone for them that is not good for me. These also include times when I might be expecting others to be who I think they should be. Signals of distress are anxiety, fear, anger, impatience, resentment, and any other emotion that makes me uncomfortable and gets that hot fire burning at the top of my skull.

With the exception of immediate physical harm, when I am in distress, I have to look at how I have constructed the thoughts in my head and examine whether or not I have talked myself into being distressed. We have all been taught in our childhood to feel a certain way when certain things happen. For example, my parents taught me that I should feel unworthy and stupid when I brought home anything less than an “A” on my report card. As I experience grade anxiety in my classes at Loyola, I have to sit down with myself and give me compassion, understanding, love, and acceptance should I choose to make a “B” in a class. I am allowing myself to enjoy the experience, knowing full well that I can make an “A” should I choose to do so.

I can’t hold onto the resentment towards my parents. That is nonproductive and simply reproduces the helplessness I felt when I was a child. I am experimenting with Laurie Buchanan’s recommendation of Emotional Freedom Techniques to help free myself.

While I know I exist eternally, I believe I am here to finish with many issues including the emotional issues that block me from living as my true presence. This human existence is far too short to waste time reliving the past and carrying this emotional baggage around weighs me down. When I leave this body, I want to leave as lightly as possible.

©2010 by Barbara L. Kass