I was raised with two other sisters in the same household. My older sister, as an adult, was not only a hoarder, but her surroundings were always very unclean. I, myself, have minimal personal items and my surroundings are very clean and well kept.
I’m sure most of you have heard of similar scenarios with children growing up in the same household but yet living a kind of “opposite” life. Have you ever wondered how that happens? One sibling ends up as a severe drug addict, while the other sibling becomes a prominent doctor.
Most people will state that the reason is because of the choices that we make that determines the course of our lives. However, if you look at that statement, would anyone consciously choose to lead a life of self-destruction? Who would do such a thing? Nobody would intentionally harm themselves. If that is true (and it is), then what we really need to look at and investigate is the idea of choice.
If you have been following my blog at all, you know that I have spoken about the voices in our heads that speak to us. We currently call those voices ourselves. When we aren’t present to those voices, they make our choices for us under the guise that it is us making those very choices when no such thing is true.
Let’s use my upbringing as an example. My father always wanted a clean house. He berated my mother if it wasn’t clean when he came home from work. In witnessing those unwanted moments as a child (and being unaware that the voices in my head weren’t my true self), my nature became fearful at the idea of a having a messy house and, as such, identified that messy houses were “bad”. I didn’t make that choice, that choice was made for me.
That unconscious choice drove my actions wherein there was always a high priority in keeping a clean, tidy house. Also, part and parcel with that identification came the judging of anyone whose house or personal body was messy and untidy, because that is how the opposites work in this world.
Now let’s look at my sister. She was also a witness when my father berated my mother if the house wasn’t cleaned when he came home from work. The part of her that spoke to her in those moments didn’t say the same thing to her as it said to me, but it still created a fear, which it always does because identification with anything is fear based. Perhaps it said the opposite, something like “Oh for gosh sakes, the house isn’t messy, it’s just fine.” She didn’t “choose” to believe that. The choice was made for her, because she wasn’t aware of how those parts of her operated.
That unconscious choice then drove her actions wherein every time she saw the need to clean her house, she heard and identified with a voice (time and time again) that said “Oh, it isn’t messy, it’s just fine” “I’ll do it later.” I don’t know what belief was truly identified with at that time, I’m just using this as an example so you can see illustratively how this process works.
The bottom line is that, if you can see it, this is taking place every moment of our lives. I say something to you. Your mind, based on the past, then tells you what my statement means and what my intentions were in saying it. You then react based on what your mind is telling you on how to react accordingly. Just an instantaneous reaction, identification, with a part of us that always believes it knows what everything means.
No choice. A choice made for us. A choice made for it, because the past seeks the repetition of itself only, not for anything new.
The only true choice we have in this world is to agree to let what has been choosing for us die in the moment. A choice to consciously suffer ourselves and stand in the pain of the past so that something new can be brought into this world.
That is the right choice – the true and only choice.
Exercise for the Week: See if you can catch a choice being made for you, where you instantaneously respond and see that something just spoke and made a choice for you. Just see it. Don’t judge yourself for it. Be curious and work to see it again and again.
Image Courtesy of: Sharon McCutcheon on Pexels