Crossing The Chasm Between BeliefsHuman relationships, even human love relationships, often come to a place that is like two lofty cliffs, divided by a deep chasm that falls thousands of feet below.  Since our minds can pride themselves on different and unique viewpoints, we each find ourselves on one side of these cliff tops of beliefs.  At times in every relationship the chasm has grown too wide for the mind to make the leap to the other side, and to seeing the other’s  point of view as reasonable.  Sometimes, indeed, someone else’s beliefs actually are unreasonable, bought up by some undisclosed alliance.  But, in essence, we all use our minds in this same way, the only difference is what we fear or desire.  These alliances act as magnets, and the words we speak align themselves as iron filings, to determine what we express.

Fascinating as this mind game is, often in relationships it leads us to unpleasant results, conflicts, and in many cases, even insurmountable disagreements that end that relationship.  And so we stand, on one side of the mental cliff, looking across a ravine that is thousands of feet deep, and hundreds of feet wide. We look across to someone who mirrors our inability to reconnect.

But there is a way to prevent this. It is a simple practice.  The mind is not usually capable of making the leap from one’s own  cliff of beliefs to another’s, but the heart is simultaneously on both sides. In truth, for the heart, the chasm does not exist.  Even in the most casual of relationships, a word or two to someone checking out our groceries or a few items at a big box hardware store, if we lead with the heart, the mind will follow. This also includes opening our hearts to ourselves, and our own needs.

On occasion, at work perhaps, or in raising children, we must say something that is not always what that other person wants to hear.  We may even be angry with them.  If we discharge that anger upon them, we see almost instantly that we have made the matter exponentially worse. We may not care at the moment, but without a doubt, we have tossed gasoline on a fire, and soon enough we have to deal with a blaze that is out of control.  As an aside, we may remember a simple rule of thumb. We can define only ourselves.  By telling someone off, we believe that we have just defined someone as who they are, but whether this definition is praising or condemning, we are defining only who we are, and never who they are. Returning to my point, when we have something we must say that other’s may not want to hear, there is only one way to preserve peace. That way is to first feel your connection to their heart.  Once done, all actions and words will come from the proper place within.

We may also see that upon very careful observation, the mind is the unwavering and faithful servant of the heart.  If we close our hearts to someone for any reason, whatever they say will be ridiculous, unexamined, lacking in logic, ungrounded, woo woo, or too tight. Our mind will gladly inform us of the fallacies in that person’s reasoning.  In the opposite realm, if we desire a person sexually or for anything whatsoever, that desire will cause us to overlook the most preposterous of attitudes, behavior or beliefs.  Neither are from a simple, open heart, and both lead to disillusionment. Leading with the heart simply means to allow that person to be seen and heard for who and what they are saying or doing;  to bear witness to them. That heart connection will give us our own stability and presence of mind to build a relationship, if ever so brief, that is at one with everyone we come in contact.  In many cases, that number is in the hundreds, even as we pass them on the street, or allow them to drive their SUV out onto the street in the space before us. When hearts connect, the illusion of separation, fear and isolation are transformed into a burst of healing energy.

Ross G. Drago
Paint Rag Magazine

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