What is the “Oneness of Self?”
A dark image covers the grass with an eerie resemblance of a dead body. Moon shadows have that ability to make trees look like skeletons from old haunts of the past. The dark image moves, and we realize a child is aware of his shadow as he laughs and giggles. The shadow begins to follow him up and down his path through the freshly mowed yard. Children go through a stage where the moon follows them everywhere, and they ARE the center of the universe. Children view parents as the “do no wrong” humans of their existence. They desperately want to be like Dad and Mom. One can only imagine the emotional destruction that occurs when a parent criticizes, condescends, berates, and curses at normal child behavior. This attack to the developing soul becomes a scar that either is locked away in a box, or is played out in adult hood with defensive posture, shattered sense of self and at times no motivation to succeed in life. These children especially have difficulty seeing the “oneness of others.” They are looking for emotional symmetry if you will. A likeness of themselves. Why is it that these young adults gravitate to a less than adequate peer network? It is a delusion, and they believe they feel better about themselves if surrounded by the more misguided, drug taking, lower morality type peers. Adults do the same behavior. Even in marriages, the work place, and local peers. We fall in love, become involved in relationships, find peers, and try to enjoy the company of others. Yet we find ourselves in arguments, disillusioned with our peers, as well as our co-workers, and go home and talk bad about such and such. Why? We frame others within a framework we are used to, that we want to be comfortable with. There is more to the shadow in the freshly mowed yard, we MUST recognize the source, the moon. Without the moon there would be no shadow to follow us. Without a peer and their individuality we would not have a relationship and we would not have conversation.
In marital therapy and couples counseling I speak of the three entities in a relationship. There is each person and the relationship. All three are treated differently. All three take on separate identities. If one does not address the relationship or refuses to see it as a viable entity then a couple spins their wheels in arguments forever or sweep issues under the rug of time. Oneness of self is seeing and recognizing that your spouse, your co-worker is different then you are and your pre-conceived illusions of how you wanted them to be are just that….preconceived ideas and wants.
We fall in love for many reasons. For the most part we are young, naive, and are venturing into an unknown abyss filled with ideas of our parents and silver screened relationships. We do not understand “oneness” and we have ideas of our partner being like us, sharing commonalities, and fantasies of who we hope them to be. After the proverbial honeymoon period we realize they are not, we may fall into a depressive state or struggle to make sense of our decisions. Arguments are harbored into questions. Why didn’t you? Why did you do this that way? How come you did not? Would you do ? Do you love me? If you cared for me? If one is not very verbal these questions are harnessed into a sequestered soul simmering into a depressive state, stressful state, or anger at the other or one’s self.
The transition in realizing your spouse your co-worker is different, has their own identity and has their own moon following them in life allows you to accept or not accept. Either way you have an ability and choice to become emotionally tied into expectations that are placed unfairly onto them. This is much different then having goals or expectations for your relationship and or spouse, knowing they have the ability to achieve great things. We MUST distinguish between wanting someone to be like you with your illusions of what you want for you, versus placing loving expectations on one so they can improve as a human being. As Goethe astutely points out, “When we treat man as he is, we make him worse than he is; when we treat him as if he already were what he potentially could be, we make him what he should be.” This distinction is crucial for the black and white thinkers out there.
The paradoxical beauty of “oneness” is that when it is achieved in relationships the relationship is so solid, so strong it is practically unbreakable. Relationships must grow together, sacrificing wants for each other while maintaining individuality and the relationship must be separate and fostered by seeing it as a connection of commonalities as well separateness. A true friendship is one that accepts each other for their differences, but pushes each other to be more than they can be. It is when we place our wants and needs onto their psyche that it is met with disappointing emotions. This is when our walk becomes selfish. If one believes the meaning of life is giving back to others, and teaching others the best we can then what happened to that philosophy when it comes to an intimate relationship or a co-worker?
When we are young, very young there is an appropriate neediness. It IS all about us and our birthday parties, holidays, and looking forward to the next achievement and even or shadows. When we mature we learn about “oneness” the oneness of the other, the respect of the other, and accepting them as a different entity, wanting them to grow and achieve, and both get their needs met through asking but not because you are expecting them to walk with your shadow. The moon will cast a separate shadow, all their own. Tonight after reading this article cast some finger puppet shadows on the wall with your mate. Watch how similar yet different they are. That is oneness in it’s most simplest form.