Oftentimes in life, the way we find our goals is by criticizing every wrong move we make. We think, “well, if I can avoid doing it wrong, if I PUNISH myself for doing it wrong, then I’ll end up doing it right, eventually.” Yeah but, how does it feel?
“Did you know that with action, and the willingness to fight, you can achieve almost anything?”
“Yeah, but why would I want to? What’s the point? I mean, wouldn’t I just lose it all again anyway? Why try hard with anything?”
“Perhaps. You might lose it all – but you might gain everything and more. Think of how you feel now. Would you really want that again? Think of what you might miss if you never tried at all. The heights of humanity are far from this place.”
“You really think so? You really think I can do it?!”
“Submit to me, and I will bring you to heights you never thought were possible.”
“Fine! I’ll do it!”
“Good. Now pay attention…”
Today, I learned about the past of the part of me who gets tense a lot. A long time ago (I don’t know when), this side of me felt lost and alone. I had lost something precious to me, and somehow, another side of me caught wind and showed up. This other side offered me, in my loneliness and despair, a new path, one that few dare to travel. To find glory, and taste the fruits of those things in life that few men can achieve. It was the promise to win a life full of what I had lost and more. To go beyond what I knew, that is, what was lost, and to grasp for what I could only imagine awaited me.
Not that there’s anything wrong with seeking something out-of-the-ordinary, or to do unique things, but the side of me who seeks glory wants to do it because of what other people will think of him. His name will live on, his accomplishments, his triumphs. Can you see why this doesn’t work?
It’s not because it’s immoral, or egotistic, or selfish – although it might be those things. Following the call of glory, just because I am sad or in a state of loss, doesn’t heal the loss. It leads anyone who follows it chasing after things that will never, ever solve the problem itself.
Ever been trying to get things done, and, whenever you think of an item on the list, you say to yourself, “eh I’ll just do that later.”? I bet you have. Procrastination runs rampant in the world and this little voice seems to be the one responsible for putting things off. Today I decided to see where the thought was coming from, and I found something intriguing.
On the surface, this irresponsible guy just says things to get you to put off doing what you really want to get done. He comes up with all kinds of excuses as to why you don’t really need to be doing what you wanted to get done. But the real question is, why is he saying these things to begin with? Why make excuses?
After talking with this part of myself for a little while, I could tell that he was carrying around a lot of pain. He got defensive, bitter, resentful, and told me straight out that he didn’t want to do some of the things I wanted to get done because they would be “too painful”. Now sure, any given task has its challenges, but this part of yourself uses the pain it’s already carrying around as an excuse for avoiding more pain, even if it’s relatively small.
I had to be very patient with this part of myself to avoid an all out fight. Understand that it can get so bad for this side of yourself that it would rather bury the pain deep within the subconscious than even talk about it. However, doing this reduces the chance of healing that pain by A LOT, because you have to go dig around inside with the express purpose of finding the pain. And who really enjoys doing that?
However, what my encounter today showed me is that it is an absolute priority, if we want to live without carrying around a burden of intense emotional pain, that we must find a way to get to the pain and let it out despite what this irresponsible side of ourselves says.
Now, that being said, it’s not easy to find that pain right off the bat, and that part of you may not even remember where the pain is stored anymore. So instead of stigmatizing this part of yourself, it’s OK to let it continue doing things that it enjoys doing to avoid the pain, as long as another part of you searches for it. However, this pain-ridden, irresponsible self might resort to harmful activities, in which case, it needs to be confronted.
So what’s the take away? If you want to live more freely, seek out your pain to let it out. Otherwise you’ll get caught in a routine of life that doesn’t satisfy your true needs, and doesn’t bring you fulfillment.
There is a part of you, who, when it sees a part of yourself it sees as a “demon”, it wants to utterly destroy that part of you. Right now I’m calling this guy “Moral Righteousness”, as he wants to decisively “purify” any “evil” he sees with his fiery powers. But unfortunately for him, I’m wise to his game. Yes, something in me might cause problems for me in life, might bring me down or keep me from some goal of mine. Fine. But if you try to come at things from a perspective of moral purity, then you never get to the root cause of what made a part of you “demonic” in the first place, and thus, never heal it. Now if a part of yourself is actively hurting another part, that’s different. Then you just need to stop the self-abuse. But to actively seek to destroy something inside of you? That’s extreme abuse.
And not only that, but it’s denying that the “demon” is a part of you in the first place! Maybe you’re uncomfortable relating to that twisted up part of yourself, or with even having the patience to work with it. But ultimately you’re not working with a “demon” or something outside of yourself. It’s a part of you, and for some reason, a reason that’s important to get to the root of, it’s behaving as it is.
Not only that, but the mindset of “Moral Righteousness” has been part of the reason for many of the genocides in the past century. The impulse to label a certain group of people as a problem, then seek to destroy them in the name of “purity” is something we’ve all seen before. It’s similar on an internal level, with that group of people being called things like “demons” or “evil”, and ruthlessly pursued so it can be purged out of you. And yet, as much as we try to deny it, they are us! We have something in common with everyone, especially our “demons”.
So then, if we each learn about healing, if we understand what causes “demonic” behavior in the first place, and can work with those parts of ourselves, maybe we’ll see less genocide in the world as well. Sounds good to me!
And btw – what do I mean by “demon”? Well, one internal character I talked about a while back, The Deceiver, I could definitely call a demon. Perhaps anything in you that causes havoc or harm you could call a “demon”.