Sunday, June 17, 2012

Abusive Partner is your Guru?

Did Byron Katie just say that my abuser is my guru?"There’s never a mistake in the universe. So if your partner is angry, good. If there are things about him that you consider flaws, good, because these flaws are your own, you’re projecting them, and you can write them down, inquire, and set yourself free. People go to India to find a guru, but you don’t have to: you’re living with one. Your partner will give you everything you need for your own freedom." ~Byron Katie
Friends who have not yet escaped abuse or who are still suffering the psychological ramifications of abuse or mistreatment have got to be railing at this latest one that caught my attention. In fact, even if one has escaped and has attained some degree of peace, even a slight memory might provoke that thing inside that I lovingly call, "The Red Hots."

Abuse is not honorable at all, so if your partner is or was abusive, did Katie's statement catch your attention? If so, keep reading...

One sweet person did share her Truth amid the responses of "Love this one!" and " Love truth ♥" 's.
"it's scary disagreeing with so many but I'm afraid I don't agree. I don't see myself in my ex-partner. I'm not abusive, I don't spit in people's faces, I don't use their achilles heel as weaponry. it's all very fluffy saying this but not real. sorry to disagree. just one opinion but for those with loving partners who aren't perfect, I definitely concur!:)"  ~ Jesse M.
I would like to thank Jesse for her courage. I know how intimidating it can be to hold to your Truth when a 'Guru' or 'Teacher' or 'Authority' so many love is claiming something that you disagree with. But I'm about Honesty and so I loved reading that. I will tell you that she is an angel to say "sorry to disagree" but I am sorry that I see nothing about her statement I can disagree with.

Aside: I founded Codie Recovery for this perpetuated cycle of feeling like we must say we're sorry to disagree lest we're prone to attack. And so even this I understand! I have Codependent Recovery articles at my website if you're interested in that topic. And please continue to pardon any dust as I have not finished moving my old site over.

Byron Katie and the Lost Noodle


So let's travel this statement and see what we can find. Maybe Katie did lose her noodle. And if she did, let's see if we can find it.

 

"There's Never a Mistake in the Universe."

One might think this is just a 'feel good' philosophy or some Spiritual belief. This is not true. What is true - Reality - is this statement and this is whether you currently believe the world is hostile or friendly. I can prove it, too. [And don't you love that?] Think of the most outrageous thing you can think of that has happened that you believe was a mistake.

The reason I know it was not a mistake is because - whatever the 'it' is -  it happened. And of course, this is Byron Katie's entire foundational message, "When I argue with reality, I hurt." The Reality is it happened. And the judgement you have about it happening - while you wish it had not happened - is the bondage. And just because you wish it had not happened, does not mean it was a mistake.

 

My Famous Belief on Should and Should Not

If ever I have desired for a true concept to take hold of the human race, it would be getting rid of the 'shoulds and 'should nots' because it's Fantasyland. And as long as I'm in Fantasyland, I am not dealing with Reality. This is not to say you cannot stay in Fantasyland. 

Shoulds and should nots are fine for potential future actions ("I should go to the store now.") but for an imaginary re-writing of current Reality in order to beat yourself up? in order to live in self-hate? in order to stay in the Fantasy of not dealing with the Now? ("I should have gone to the store.") it does not serve us well.  And only in the attempt to re-live the Story about some past 'shoulded' or 'should notted' deed, is where we're tempted to find this term we call 'mistake.'

"It should have happened because it did." or "It should not have happened because it did not."

In this, there is no mistake.

And the best news is that we now have a starting point called Reality where we can get to Freedom.

 

"So if your partner is angry, good."

Of course this also means friend, relative, acquaintance, or other loved one or even stranger. So what about the 'good' part? "Why is it good?" or "How is it good?" or "Shouldn't they NOT be angry?"

It's good because it is. Good is a judgment and when you view the world AS Reality there is peace. And anything that can bring us closer to Peace [Reality] can be judged as good.

People are angry or not angry. Both are good. It's good when I 'see' or 'find' something that is painful to bear as it's yet another opportunity for me to Inquire, go within, and find the Peace. It's even better when I see something pleasurable because clearly I delight in pleasurable feelings. Since seeing something painful can lead me to Inquiry, which brings Peace, how is that not good? :)

And while we're at it, let's just go on and throw out the love affair with assigning emotions as good or bad. Emotions just are. Some are painful, some are pleasant but in all cases, they just are AND can lead us into a deeper understanding of ourselves. So, yes. Good.

Got it? Good! Don't got it? Not good. [Re-read it.] Haha.

 

And this does not mean, "So if your partner hits you, good."

Humans tend to take statements made in the now regarding a certain idea and, looking for patterns because that's what our brain does, we turn them into concepts. We turn them into concepts so we feel we gain a leg up in the 'rules.' In this case it might look like, 
"If my partner is angry, my partner gets violent, and my partner uses violence against me so Katie is calling that good." 

Is this what happens? When I read that statement, that's certainly how my brain went. I remember being a victim. If I wanted to, I could sit here and remember, to a level, what I felt when I was a certain age and a certain thing happened; I could remember the terms and words of what the earlier version of this brain was feeling, thinking, and believing, but because my paradigm has changed, I can only remember it. I cannot 're-feel' it anymore. And this is great. This means I keep my compassion and yet I don't have the pain. This is what living in Reality looks like for me.

So no, this is not good that your partner uses violence against you. If your partner's anger scares you because you have a history of receiving violence from the one who is angry, no, let's not call that good. Let us call that real. And in that Reality; In recognizing That Reality, that is what's good.
And recognizing Reality when your goal is to quit being a victim in your mind (or not be one in Reality), is always good - no matter how temporarily painful that recognition (in lieu of illusion) may be.

 

"If there are things about him that you consider flaws, good, because these flaws are your own, you’re projecting them, and you can write them down, inquire, and set yourself free."

Flaws means mistakes. Remember what we learned about mistakes? There aren't any.

So if your friend is only a projection, and "there is never a mistake in the universe" than how can those 'tendencies he displays' be your projected flaws? Right! They're not. Not in Reality. And this is what we are trying to get to. But since we're not there yet, we write them down, in truth, what we 'they' are.

Projection screens showing a movie aren't reality either. Just a tool to help us watch & understand the movie. And this is what your partner is; the mirror; The Projection (Screen) of your Story. That's it.

BUT because we are confused, and consequently not in Reality or Clarity, we are seeing in our partners things that hurt us about ourselves. [And to further confuse the point, we have been taught to believe we are at the whim of a mistaken or hostile universe; ie, that they are hurting us.] But by looking at our partner, friend, enemy, loved one, in this way, as a tool, WE can "write them down, inquire, and set ourselves free."

 

People go to India to find a guru, but you don’t have to: you’re living with one. Your partner will give you everything you need for your own freedom."

If I HAVE to disagree with any of these statements, I'd pick this one. Can you believe it? :)

But even then, not really. I just feel like being a contrarian - to let Jesse know it's okay to always disagree. It always does lead me to deeper truths. And remember the value of being Honest, Open, and Willing? It is of utmost importance!

It's just that I have found this to be true but also equally true, when I began this journey some years ago it seemed to almost naturally occur to me, "It starts with me and ends with me." So even if I can find no one willing to be my Guru, my Zen Master, my mirror, I notice I can look in the literal and figurative mirror to find a 'partner' willing to be my Guru or my Zen Master. My ego. My incarnation. My thoughts.

And I know this is deviating a little bit but I do not want anyone reading this to become confused in thinking I (or all people on all parts of the path) NEED people to be the mirror, because I don't. Byron Katie has said before that it's just easier to use people to see ourselves and I agree. Again, it's often the case this is true, however, because I DO have a partner, I AM out in the world, and I DO interact with others in the world.

But those ever-increasing moments in which I have nothing but love and bliss for those who [think they] hate me, who maybe [think they] mistreat me, or even my partner who is right every single time about every single thing - haha! - I can still sometimes play nicely with this ego as my mirror.

So yes, even if your primary partner is 'just' you looking at you in the figurative OR literal mirror, you are viewing the precise Guru you need in this moment.

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So what do you think? 

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Living Samsara or Codependent Recovery

9 comments:

  1. I love your words, however people choosing to go to India for their Guru is their path...who are you or me to make a statement...let them be...

    Namah Shivay

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  2. Yes, I agree. That was exactly the closest statement I could find disagreement with - if I had to disagree. Yes, some people do need to go to India to find a Guru because they do. :)

    Namaste!

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  3. What I haven't been able to quite get the grasp on is doing "the work" on people like the Pearls, who encourage parents to abuse their children as a means of control (and through their guidance more than a few children are now dead, thanks to the parents following their instruction), or big game hunters who kill innocent (and endangered!) species for a trophy.

    I understand that is what is, and I'm not trying to argue with the reality of it...but i have a more difficult time not perceiving those actions as "wrong" and not being upset by it.

    Doing the work on individuals close to me is much easier.

    Do you have any guidance on how to apply the work to situations such as I mentioned above, as in the authors of "To Train Up a Child"; and Melissa Bachman?

    Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. Please forgive me on just finding this comment, Margarita. I really need to figure out how to set this up so I get notified.

      I DID hear about the Pearl's book and I, too, have great 'stress' when I think of people killing or harming anything for 'fun.'

      It makes me quite sick as a matter of fact, and i feel disgusted.

      If I had guidance for that, maybe I would be an enlightened guru (smile) BUT as it is, I think you have given me an example for my next post. Yes, you have. I'm going to get right on that and I thank you for your honest expression of emotions.

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    2. When we realize that everything is like a nature phenomenon, like the weather, a Tsunami... it resolves this issue. The thought we have that negates reality is: "Humans should not do harm to other humans." That is simply not true because they do. We don't get enraged at nature disasters that kill humans. We respond to reality by helping people. We know the truth that earthquakes and tornados do cause destruction. (By the way it is our concept to see it as destruction, including death and suffering of people.)
      One of my articles is called "Your Child is Like the Rain," addressing this issue.

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  5. The work is not to be applied on others, it is only for self practice. If your partner is abusive - and he is YOUR partner, and you are STILL there (?!) Will YOU run screaming because you are getting the lesson of a lifetime? wIll YOU be staying with an abusive person? out of your own free choise?
    If you do, than the violence s\he inflicts on you is what you are allowing!
    That's what she meant... all choises are free, (I am not sure I agree all choices are free, but I am sure you got her all wrong.)
    Byron is not into abusive mind control or cult like systems.

    Hope I helped!
    Elly.

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    Replies
    1. Nice! Thanks. Thanks for re-affirming that Katie is not into abusive mind control or cult like systems.

      This post was specifically regarding abusive partners since Katie said "Your Partner is Your Guru" and then Jesse 's response on the FB page:

      "it's scary disagreeing with so many but I'm afraid I don't agree. I don't see myself in my ex-partner. I'm not abusive, I don't spit in people's faces, I don't use their achilles heel as weaponry. it's all very fluffy saying this but not real. sorry to disagree. just one opinion but for those with loving partners who aren't perfect, I definitely concur!:)" ~ Jesse M.

      As an adult person with former trauma incidents and knowing the veil of trauma with which PTSD can view statements/events/the world, I was seeking to clarify Ms. Katie for those people who are still viewing through that painful veil.

      I've noticed in her videos (and comments to some of her FB & Twitter posts) - and through emails to me - that trauma survivors seek out her assistance and I don't want anyone to discount her (like I previously did WHILE in the middle of a reliving trauma experience).

      Yes, because Byron Katie is wonderful and so are you!

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