Transforming the Blame Game

April 30th, 2017
Transforming the Blame Game

 

“He's driving me crazy!”

“You're stressing me out!"

“She really drains me!”

Admit it; we’ve all thought these or variants of these thoughts before. And we will again. The New Age idea to never have a “negative” thought is too tall an order for any human. This impossible ideal leads to even more self-criticism, which is exactly the opposite of what we’re trying to accomplish!

Thoughts come and go, they always have and they always will. The problem is when we start believing these “first thoughts” as if they’re true.

Our first thoughts typically are generated from fear, guilt, responsibility and shame, and come from the subconscious, habitual mind. First thoughts are an end result of all of our conditioning.

When these first thoughts aren’t recognized, they can take over. The righteous ego kicks in and makes the proverbial mountain out of a molehill.

I’ve found that whenever I am whining, complaining and blaming, it’s time to slow down and feel into the moment—through and past the mind’s ideas. What I always see is that what I thought was true really wasn’t true it all.

I always see that whatever I’m judging in another person is a reflection of my own self, manifest outwards.

 

When we hate others, it has nothing to do with them. It’s a reflection of our inner unresolved turmoil.

That’s the bad news.

Now, for the good news:

When we hate others, it has nothing to do with them. It’s a reflection of our inner unresolved turmoil.

 

It’s bad for the ego because knowing this means we can no longer blame anyone else for our situation.

It’s good because it means we can take personal responsibility and turn a difficult situation into something positive.

When one person or group is consistently blamed for our own (or another person or group's) troubles, we all become disempowered. As author Michael Brown said, “To blame, when broken down, is to b-lame (be lame).”

 

Whether what we think about one person or group is based on our own observation or a media manipulated fairy tale, the mind latches onto “the other” and assigns credit or blame externally. A politician, employer, family member, etc. can become the target for our own inadequacies. When our reaction to others are anger, hatred and rage, it’s now all about that other person. They could be people we’ve never met, and still, the mind assigns them as the cause for our upset. It’s all their fault!

This doesn't mean you don't fight (lovingly!) for what you believe in.

There's nothing wrong with an occasional rant on Facebook or to a good friend, and getting 5000 “likes” may stroke your ego for a while. But after that, you’re still left with these indignant and potential harmful thoughts. Only now you’re justified in having them. “After all, if all these people agree with me…” 

Part of the problem with blaming others and finding fault is that we’re fighting with what already exists. We all know that what we resist, persists! Finding fault in others—even though it feels good temporarily—is an unproductive use of energy.

As my Driver’s Ed teacher said: “If you’re involved in a motor vehicle accident, and you die because the other guy ran a red light, whose fault is it?” 

He then yelled, “WHO CARES? YOU’RE DEAD!”

 

As we consistently blame, we give our power away to the subject of that blame. Therefore, ideally, we recognize that what is being pointed out in that person being blamed is also a part of ourselves. We can then choose to respond accordingly. 

The invitation is to ALWAYS be the best person WE can be. To own all aspects of self because what we own can not own us.

 

If you’re upset with someone else’s narcissism, ignorance, or belligerence for example (or all three!), while they may be self-centered, unwilling to learn and/or arrogant, how we respond is key to our own health and spiritual growth. Instead of blame, we can make better use of our energy by stating, “Given a certain reality, I too could exhibit these behaviors.” This reduces judgement and increases compassion. Then we can ask, “Who can I be in response to what is occurring?” 

We can choose a more heart-felt response.

We can choose compassion over anger.

We can choose harmony over dis-ease.

We can choose a divinely guided response over an ego-based reaction.

But none of these can happen when our reaction to being triggered isn't noticed, accepted, and owned.

 

The ultimate spiritual practice isn't always actively manifesting the life of your dreams (which are typically other peoples’ dreams of what they believe will make them happy that we’ve adopted!), rather it's showing up to what shows up. 

Completely. Fully. Holistically.  

The more immersed we are in the present moment, the more we can access higher guidance. This leads to better thoughts, decisions and actions, and obviously, an even better life!

One of the best and simplest tools for presence immersion is being more conscious of our breath. As we slow down enough to do so, we can better notice what arises within us in any situation. From this place, we can know on a deeper level that blaming others doesn't work.

Similarly, only from that place can we truly experience each moment without taking other people's judgements personally. How?

Think about how untrue so much of what we initially think can be. And now remember that we're all the same. When another person spews their judgements your way, know that what they're saying may not be true either. Of course, it might be, but we can feel into the moment and open to the possibility that there's something deeper going on: that what they perceive in us reflects their own inner unresolved turmoil. Once we're aware of that we won't need to lash back, which is ego fighting ego. No one wins. We can have compassion for the person and accept them for who they are, judgements and all. Granted, if several people tell you the same thing, it may be something to look at!

In that present moment, it's easy to transform blame into self-awareness. We can surrender deeper into what already exists without fighting and adding to the tension.

When in present moment awareness, we can resist less and open more. Even if what’s arising is uncomfortable! In fact, ESPECIALLY when what’s arising is uncomfortable.

Most distract themselves to bury the feelings. Some mentalize it. Others lash out. We don’t have to. Stay with the discomfort long enough. This is the edge where true growth and healing occurs. On the other side of the edge we can be fully informed and better connected to our higher selves, to others and to Spirit. 

 

Ideally, we have someone there to remind us to think again—to embrace the first thought with love and acceptance and invite in the second thought until this process becomes an automatic response. Ask a romantic partner, a good friend, or a therapist to keep you on track because we all need reminders. And it’s often easier for others to see us than for us to clearly see ourselves. We all have blinders on. But our emotions can be a guide to our inner state. They can direct us toward a more heart-centered way of being, or they can drag us downward. I’ve found that when I acknowledge that those pesky first thoughts will never stop occurring, I can go much easier on myself. As soon as I notice a first thought, I consciously invite in a second thought, and a whole new world of peace, acceptance and a higher truth opens up. What I believed to be true was merely a distraction from my own core issues.

When I shed light upon the darkness, all becomes illuminated. At that point, self love and compassion always arise.

 

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The author of this article does not dispense medical advice or prescribe the use of any technique as a form of treatment for physical, emotional, or medical problems. The intent of the author is only to offer information of a general nature to help you in your quest for emotional and spiritual well-being. In the event you use any of the information in this article for yourself, which is your constitutional right, the author and the publisher assume no responsibility for your actions.

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