I don't care how 'clean' you are, how impeccable your words and deeds are, and how noble your intent - we all find ourselves at times in conflict, in confrontation. For many of us, we get triggered and essentially are just 'fighting the same fight' with different scenes and actors. For example, are we really reacting to the issue at hand, or are we, as I like to call it - time-travelling? Reflecting back to the last, the previous, all of or the first time we were in that particular conflict.
You might have grown up in an unemotional and disconnected family and by nature, seek deep connection and validation. You may have experienced abandonment, and carry that forward into mistrust, suspicion, or keeping folks at a distance so no one can get close. We all carry the past within us; it's important to know when it's the past influencing the present, and to engage with the 'false evidence' that emerges when we are triggered.
I'm making a transition, from something to something else. In Tantra, one would say I'm bringing the death of one thing to create space for a new birth. And, I'm sure there are moments when the caterpillar appears to be dying to the uninformed, the chrysalis develops and then from that seeming death, really, just metamorphosis. New life, transformed from old.
While this gently scares me, and it should, I realize that it also really confronts and scares more than a few of those around me, as well. That's fascinating, but I've now come to discern that perhaps a simple act of courage is terrifying to those who dwell in their own insecurity or fear, or other limiting emotions. That an act of positive transformation is confrontational to those who seek to hold, to control, or to ignore; there's always space for them to make those changes themselves, but it hasn't happened yet.
So, I'm experiencing some really interesting push back and some straight up nastiness and confrontation. I check myself, it feels hurtful, stupid and out of integrity (that's my perception, I can't state the intention, just how it feels) but that doesn't give me permission to meet that energy with the same. So, I'm committed to the lessons, and to the experience that Spirit is providing and the deep personal growth that I can draw from this. This is my work, in reflection of others choices, I must do what I must do, and be the best me, each day, every day.
Therefore, when people and situations get tough, and harden up - what's your instinct? To dig in, hold your ground, fight back, be righteous, use your indignation to claim truth? Or, can you learn from nature and from our practice. There is no gritting through it and pushing past it that is sustainable in the asana practice. Nor is there in life. As I've shared before, two choices - expand into love or contract into fear.
"The softest drop of water wears away the hardest block of granite - it has but two warriors; time and patience."
"The strong, solid, majestic Oak falls in one strike of lightning; the fluid supple Willow survives all storms."
How does it work for you; do you see where you harden up and where you can get soft - either in your asana practice, or as a result of doing that exploration on the mat, can you do it in your life? Can you meet that rigidity with new flexibility?
And, even more pertinent - can you find compassion and some level of human love for those who Spirit brings in your path, who are acting from their own hurt, poverty, disillusionment and pain? Not accept the treatment, not tolerate the bullshit, but still just love them for doing what they can do with what they've got??
And then, leave them to their work - it's theirs, not yours! Thank them for being for teacher, then graduate!!
Give thanks and praise, expand into love!