What does this mean?
It is a complex concept that is often misunderstood by the new age community. In simple terms, it explains that we project our thoughts, beliefs, feelings, and energies onto other people. What we see in them, is that part of us that we can’t see in ourselves.
Blinded by our own inner demons (and we all have them), it is sometimes hard to tell truth from reality. We all carry a record of past hurts, rejections, negativity, anger and failures with us. Faced with a new situation, we almost always project those past fears into the new situation, virtually guaranteeing that history repeats itself.
In terms of relationships (romantic or friends), do you find that there is a pattern? Do all your lovers turn out to be control freaks, or do most of your relationships fail due to lack of trust? If you are seeing a pattern, chances are that you are projecting your past experiences into the person in front of you.
Years ago, I had a beautiful friend, who was kind, generous, and very loving, but proclaimed that she had never experienced a faithful relationship. All her lovers had cheated her, and she had developed this expectation that the next one would too. She entered all her relationships from a place of fear, ready to protect herself from the next blow. Armed with a list of grievances, and experiences of rejection, she embarked on a new relationship determined to not be cheated on. Guess what, she saw signs of cheating right away. Months later, after they broke up, the guy went on to meet the woman of his dreams, and turned out to be the most faithful and trustworthy husband to her. That is not because he changed his evil ways, it is because he met a woman who was projecting trust, confidence and stability.
I learned long ago, that what we see in other people is that which is within us. It was a tough lesson to learn, and too lengthy for this post, but once I started to project nothing but pure love, kindness and positive expectations onto people and situations, my experiences started to shift. I noticed that my relationships with bosses, relatives, friends and partners became healthier, not because they became better people, but because I trained myself to see them in only a positive light.
You have heard the expression “See no evil”. Do you know what that means? It means that you must learn to see only the good, in every person, in every situation, no matter what. Once you train your mind to do this (I did it through meditation, but there are other ways), you lose the ability to see the bad, the ugly, fear or unkindness. That part of you begins to diminish, and literally lightens your energetic load.
Enlightenment is a complete inability to see darkness.
The loss of the ability to see darkness, is not a handicap at all. It is a gift that you can pass on to other people, and project onto them so that they too can benefit. The more you become blind to darkness, the more you become surrounded by light. You might wonder why bother going through this process? It requires exposure to hurtful people, difficult moments, and mental exercise to face them, and only see their light.
But, once you can achieve this, you become completely impenetrable to fear, anxiety, hate, or attacks. Nothing can touch you, nothing can harm you. You are now able to experience relationships in a very open, and fearless way. Knowing that no one has the ability to hurt you, you can approach them from a different perspective: expecting nothing but the best from every person.
This is the same thing as the open heart concept, which the late Maya Angelou spoke about. Your heart remains open at all times, welcoming everything and everybody, projecting love and kindness unconditionally to everyone. You will know this is working when you are able to look a person who has hurt you the most, and truly wish them nothing but the best in return. The day you can face your biggest enemy, or look into the eyes of a killer, and rather than see their rage, their malice, their evil, you only see their light, is the day you become enlightened.
Enlightenment means, seeing the light in everything. If you can still see darkness, you have some work to do. But, understand that the work is on yourself, not the other person. If your goal is to have healthier relationships, you might want to take some time to clean up your own energy before you approach another person. If your goal is to repair your career, you must remove the bad energies created by past experiences. If you don’t, you will only project them onto your next project.
There are many people out there who claim to be “enlightened”. It is practically a fashion statement to proclaim one’s enlightenment and wear it on one’s forehead. But, the way to tell who a person truly is, is to ask questions about those things that bother them the most. How many “enlightened” people are activists, protesting something, or speaking out against somebody? How many “enlightened” people feel fear, spew hate, point fingers, pass judgment ,or spread warnings of doom and gloom, or see a potential threat to the world? They are the opposite of light.
I recently befriended 10 beautiful, shiny people. Each has a gift, some have a better understanding of themselves than others. As they came to know one another, they began to clash. Some felt threatened, some felt fear, others pointed fingers, and declared war on each other. I watched their interactions in confusion, how could such nice, positive, loving people recoil at the sight of each other? The more I tried to calm them, the more fuel I was throwing into the flame- all they could see is darkness in one another, while I couldn’t see anything wrong with any of them. In a situation like this, all you can do is to walk away. Don’t meddle, don’t attempt to teach, they will not see it.
The ability to see darkness, is a very harmful thing. The more darkness inside your heart, the more you will see it in others. Our society and media effectively train us into seeing it. Your goal, is to unlearn what they have taught you. You can develop a blindness to it. In fact, that is the path towards enlightenment.
As you progress, you will meet more people who have developed this ability to unsee darkness. They will amaze you with their fearlessness, openness, complete trust in humanity. They do not suffer, they are oblivious to pain or anxiety. Their hearts are always open. Only a closed heart can be punched. With an open heart, the blow goes right through it. Neither person can get hurt.
When you meet these people, you might feel compelled to protect them. They come across as oblivious, too trusting, intoxicated, and almost foolish. Please do not help them. They have filled their hearts and minds with so much light, there is no way anyone can hurt them. Any attempt to “fix” them, or make them see reality, is just your projection of the harshness of the world onto them. Step away. Admire them from a distance if you want, but please do not attempt to teach them.