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Practice Deep Listening

“I discovered that when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn’t believe them, I didn’t suffer, and that this is true for every human being. Freedom is as simple as that. I found that suffering is optional. I found a joy within me that has never disappeared, not for a single moment. That joy is in everyone, always.” – Byron Katie

Have you ever been out with some friends, at a bar or just hanging out together somewhere and a stranger says something to one of your friend and your friend gets upset. He or she starts to talk about the strangers comments to everyone in the group. Nobody in your group of friends cares about it, but your friend is very offended. The stranger is gone and still your offended friend can’t stop talking about it for the whole time you are together. Anger starts to set in and he or she starts to criticize and insult this person wanting you to as well, but you just don’t care about it, what they said meant nothing to you. You part company with your group and forget about it. Weeks later you get together and your friend is still on about the past situation. Or maybe it’s you who are offended and can’t drop the situation out of your mind. You continue on about the offending words and can’t stop your mind chatter about what you could and should and would and so on and on.

Why is it one thing said can offend one person or persons and not another? It’s all related to our experience and how we learn to process and associate what others say to us. Many of our subconscious programming rules our lives. Many times we place the blame on others claiming to know what is right or wrong. But when you stop to think about it all, our concepts are based on expectations that we develop as we grow from childhood. For example: spitting in public is an offence and considered a minor crime in some US states. Spitting on public property in these states could bring a fine of $500 to the offender. Here is Belize though it is not unusual to see someone spitting in public. So if you come from the US you might get offended if someone spits near you in a public place. No matter where you are unless you understand the culture and customs you might find yourself offended for no reason at all.

Knowing yourself requires some deep listening when someone charges you or pushes your buttons. Next time you get offended by what is said or done rather than lash out with unkind words, take time to listen deep within. Ask yourself. Why do these words and actions offend me? Even though they say words are like weapons’, I have never known words to hurt anyone unless they take them to heart.

Thoughts and words are not real unless we make it so. True thoughts are the beginning of all ideas but we decide whether we turn them into words and make them our reality. Deep listening when you find yourself offended can help you see the concepts that shape how you think. Take time to recognize within yourself the things that upset you is a great step to removing past conditioning that can cause you pain and suffering.

Questions to ask when words and actions offend you.
It is true what they said?
Have I experienced this thought and feeling in the past? Where? When? Why? Etc.
Is it worth getting upset and disrupting my peace?
How would I be if I did not think and feel these offending thought and words related to me?

Many of us suffer because of our beliefs about the world around us. Rather than hoping the world will change to match our beliefs, we can question these thoug

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