Listening to Connect
I had an interesting dream just before waking up today. It seemed to beg for reflection and sure enough I saw something a little deeper, about listening in a way that connects people, than ever before. I had to write about my discovery.
This was my little vignette while still asleep: A friend (I don’t know who) teases me about the contents in the trunk of my car. The seasons seem to go so fast so even though I’ve had to add ice scrapers and non-freezing window washer, I’ve not removed my tennis racket and balls (which I think I used twice last summer) there are four or five different purses in the event I have a last-minute dinner out or a cocktail hour at a gallery or local café; one never knows what life will present – I think that happened maybe two times in the past year. There are sneakers and dancing shoes (I believe I have three pairs in there) just in case. Now, I did remove my beach chairs and beach bag from last summer, so I’m not totally crazy. What really stood out to me is that I got defensive. In the dream, I am adamant about explaining why I carry each item, as if to say: “Give me a break,” and I like that I am a bit eccentric, anyway!
I’ve realized along my life’s journey that it is silly, if not crazy, to get defensive about ANY THING since it is always the speaker’s perception of what’s happening.
Life became ever so much easier for me, when I stopped taking things personally. It’s not that I talk myself into not taking things personally, it’s that I learned, through my understanding of how the 3 Principles work within all of us, that it is never about me personally, it’s about the speaker’s perceptions, interpretations and assumptions that are colored by their mood in the moment . That understanding allows me to listen fully without my own thinking in the way. If I listen for how the person feels, where s/he is coming from, I will feel connected to them, even if they are criticizing me! In the past when I would take it personally I would feel the opposite; I would feel quite disconnected.
I’d much prefer to feel connected than feel disconnected. I noticed that when I took things personally, it never, ever, rewarded me in any way, shape, or form. What a blessing to see the truth of the Principles, showing us that life comes through us - not at us. It makes a huge difference in life. Since we always experience our own thinking, of course we all want to experience less stressful thinking rather than more stressful thinking! The only way to understand how it works, is to look within your own mind. Reading this blog might make sense to you on an intellectual level, but to really see the truth of it and to experience the impact it has on your life, you have to see how the power to think plays out in your life, and everyone else’s life, as well - since I’m describing the result of Principles, (in this case: Mind, Consciousness and Thought) it is true for everyone. Functional Principles are true for everyone.
That reminds me of a quote by the late Sydney Banks, “Look within, there you will find the answers.” And after thirty some odd years of listening to Mr. Banks’ lectures, in person, in his podcasts and tapes, I’d never heard it to this level of depth before. Others whose lives have been touched by their understanding of the Principles also say that understanding them always has a positive impact that deepens over time. I have found the same to consistently be true.
So with that said - what are you waiting for? Why not give yourself the gift of exploration. This is a good place to start; check out this library. Tons of research and resources for your listening and reading pleasure -- and then jump into the Retreat that Laurie Holmes and I are facilitating in North Carolina in October. I know you will be so happy you decided to explore with us! Retreats are a wonderful way to go deep inside yourself and with guidance from 3 Principles practitioners, you will also see what we have found to be true and extraordinarily helpful in our own lives.