Just when I thought I started noticing a soft glow of a halo forming around my head, toying with the idea that I was actually becoming a more balanced person – bang! – a major revelation: this is all B.S, I am full of B. S.
As it happens, I now notice more of the “bad” stuff than before: I see the reactivity of the mind even in between major reactions (before empathizing with someone I can notice a sensation of inner satisfaction showing its ugly head even for just a split second); I notice how enormously self-interested I am and how I keep getting stuck in the same places whenever my precious ego feels threatened or hurt no matter how decisive I am about getting unstuck. In a way, there are more opportunities now to get stuck in some of those emotions as more of them are brought onto the surface by increasing self-awareness. It’s like looking in the mirror and seeing more of the self than I noticed before and boy it is not a pretty sight! The challenge is to not identify with this new old stuff, see it as what it is and not judge. Somewhat surprisingly, it is easier for me to accept others do it than see myself in this sutuation which I interpret as a sign of arrogance: I should be perfect while the others don’t have to be. This time the ego feels hurt also because it sort of did not succeed in overriding itself!
I heard of this part of the process; still it was somewhat of a shock to see how little I sometimes need to fly off the handle and how hard it is to notice it, label it and and put behind.
The aftertaste of this particular conversation when the person just in a matter of a few seconds pressed all the right buttons made me realise just how wrong I was believing I did not expect any gains from the practice yet hoping it would help me become a better person. Yet I cannot imagine not having any intention or any expectations whatsoever. Something does drive us to practice, for example is not the willingness to get rid of suffering not a motive in itself?