I’ve almost always been a people watcher. I like people about as much as I don’t like them and anyone who’s near me on a daily basis will attest to the fact that I’m generally pretty great at sizing someone up and discerning bullshit from non-bullshit. As I age I’ve gotten better and better at discerning the parts that go into the makeup of an individual. Through the years this has added to my people watching experience. Truly, the human façade we wear in this life is a quilt composed of our experiences, thoughts, and emotions.
For a long time, when I was a little younger, I watched folks and mostly wondered what it was that made me different. I’d notice one thing or multiple things and would then kind of compare whatever I noticed to whatever was recognizable within myself as the closest corresponding factor – the closest parallel. To a small degree, this still happens but the context has shifted a bit. I still notice the differences but it’s very rare that I make the comparison or contrast.
As I continue aging and maturing (mentally, spiritually, etc…) this continues to be something I often do. I’m more able than ever to discern someone’s ego, their mind, and at times I feel like I can even see a little behind all that crap and nearly glimpse the part inside of them that is The Same within myself. At times this has bitten me in the butt because I find myself, at times, less willing to dance with the egos I encounter – something pretty much necessary within our three-dimensional universe. Of course, the way around that is to reach through those egos to some place deeper within people and interact with that instead. This is the place gurus often operate from and this route usually takes more patience to achieve progress, but the relationships that often result, or that change as a result, make that scenic route worth it.
Sometimes, being aware of these components of other people allows you to see yourself more clearly. We’re all (essentially) the same after all, no? Sometimes, for me, seeing something in someone else helps me recognize the same within myself. I’ve heard often that when we encounter someone we don’t like, or who has qualities we don’t care for, that which we feel repulsed by is actually something from within ourselves reflecting back to us. In many instances, I agree with this. In other instances, I think this isn’t true. Either way, whether you’re seeing in someone else that which is in you or whether you’re witnessing something in them that doesn’t apply to you, after a certain point you’re able to take a snapshot of what you see in another and use it as a gauge for your own self. This can be a very humbling experience and one that produces surprising growth.
They say you should pull the plank from your own eye before attempting to find the splinter in someone else’s, but I tell you lumber is the same regardless of the magnitude.
Aum Shri Mahaganeshaya Namaha