Musings

In the past, I have found myself in the grip of behaviors that cause me to wonder “why did I act that way?  I knew that the outcome would be undesirable.”  I began to realize, only after sufficient introspection, that if I don’t acknowledge my tendencies and the reasons behind them, I might as well have no free will at all.  Without awareness of my faults and an aggressive stance toward addressing them, I find myself completely at the mercy of my design and past experiences, doomed to enact the same patterns again and again. 

This guides my interactions with other people; if I notice the same behaviors arising again and again, I do not judge them as villainous.  I simply see them as a different version of myself, for in a very real sense, I have been exactly where they are at right now.

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4 thoughts on “Musings

  1. I am not in favor of “disintegration,” ala “that is another me.” I do favor the concept of having agreements with myself, and reasserting them when I have a “breakdown.” Once again, a person’s “way of being,” is affected by his response to external clues, and habitual strategies. You may know people who have a main strategy for dealing with others, especially confrontations.

    Reflecting: anger in response to anger. Deflecting: shift attention away, change the subject, bring up a counter argument. Resolving: make adjustments/agreements Avoiding: leave, do not respond, ignore. There are many others, but I know people, who respond these ways when stressed.

    Can we change these “habits of being?” Not without long practice and reinforcement. Why? Because these are not intellectual exercises, they are emotional, primitive, instinctive. very hard to adjust.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Indeed! Those are all actions that are attempts to move up the dominance hierarchy, or nullify someone else’s attempt to do so. What I like to do is try and act in a way that removes myself from the hierarchy (which, ironically, moves me up it). So in practical terms, I like to address each argument calmly and logically. If there is so much as a grain of truth to what my “opponent” is saying, I’ll actually amplify their point by providing evidence, and apologizing for my action immediately. I also throw in compliments and sincere remarks conveying my respect and love (in heated arguments with friends, I have actually said, “I still love you, brother—after all this is said and done we’re still buddies”). The key is to attack—calmly, methodically, and logically—the argument and not the person, in my opinion, and demonstrate I’m not affected by any vitriol through compassionate, sincere remarks.

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