Image by Stefan Keller
Narrated by Marie T. Russell.
I recall many years ago when I did my first fire walk (walking barefoot on hot coals), that when I woke up the next morning, my mind promptly dismissed my experience telling me it couldn't have happened as it wasn't possible to walk on burning coals and not get burned. "Luckily" for me, I had gotten a tiny burn when a small piece of coal had gotten lodged between two of my toes, so I had a tiny burn that proved that I had walked on coals. Thus I was able to refute my brain's claim that I hadn't walked on hot coals.
In much the same way, we refute many events in life. Some things we do not even see because they are outside the range of our expectations or beliefs. For example, why do some people see auras, and others don't? Why do some people see spirit guides and ghosts, and other don't? Is it because the "believers" are delusional, or is it because the "unbelievers" are blocking their senses and do not see things outside their "accepted reality"?
Your Perception Comes from your Perspective
Our perspective alters what we see, how we interpret what we see, and what we conclude from it. When I was doing a live radio show in South Florida in the 90s, people would come up to me and tell me how they loved what I said on a specific show. And then, they would proceed to describe what I had said, or at least what they had heard and interpreted. It would amaze me how three different people would have three different ideas as to what the show had been about and what I had said. And even more amazing, most of the time I didn't share any of their perspectives on it. I had a whole different idea of what the show had been about, and what I had said.
This led me to realize that everything we hear and see is colored by our interpretation of it, by our own filters. Consequently, when we speak to others, they often don't hear what we said (or what we think we said), but they hear what they think we said, or perhaps what they expected or projected we would say. It can get confusing!
We each have our individual experiences, frame of reference, and opinions. This creates our own unique perspective on our surroundings and on life in general. We see life "through a glass darkly" via our limitations, judgments, fears, beliefs, etc. We are not a clear lens seeing "all that is" with clarity. We are a clouded lens seeing life as a distortion.
How To See Beyond the Veil of Illusion
So how do we start seeing past the veil of illusion? First, we realize that everything we see is only a portion of what is truly there. The brain filters out many things it sees, either because it doesn't fit its preconceived notions, or, what it sees is completely out of the range of what it accepts as "reality".
Secondly, anytime we can place ourselves, as much as we can, in the other person's perspective, we will get a clearer picture of what they are expressing and who they are. This makes "walking a mile in someone's shoes" a useful tool to really see "what is".
And of course, anytime we can step out of our own judgments, beliefs, perspectives, etc. we get to see a bigger picture of what really exists. Perhaps we can endeavor to see things through the eyes of an enlightened master (Buddha, Jesus, Lao Tzu, etc.) and thus get a truer perception of reality.
Oftentimes, we are a bit like a horse wearing blinders. We only see what is directly in front of us. Yet to attain a dream or a goal, we have to look beyond the immediate or the obvious.
Sometimes, our goal or vision cannot be seen with the physical eyes, it takes the inner eye to see where we are going and what we are seeking. And while it is important to remain in the now, it is also important to keep faith in what is coming beyond the now...knowing that something wonderful is working itself out in the background.
We, on Planet Earth, are in the process of changing the set on the stage of life... we are transforming the stage from a horror or action film to a romance comedy, or rom-com, where life is full of light, love and joy. Remember to look beyond your immediate experience and have faith in what is heading your way.
Breathe, Breathe Deeply
Have you ever noticed that when you are tense, stressed, or in fear, you tend to hold your breath? Unfortunately, this makes the situation worse as our brain and our body need oxygen to function.
Our breath is the source of life. When we stop breathing, we die. To life fully and at our best, we need to breathe consciously and completely, filling our lungs with fresh oxygenated air. As much as possible, go outside, or open a window, and breathe, breathe deeply.
One way to change our perspective on events taking place in our life, is to breathe slowly and deeply. When in a tense or stressful situation, stop and take a deep breath, then let it out slowly and completely. And repeat the process until your energy and your perspective have shifted and clarity has entered the picture.
Clearing the Way
There may appear to be obstacles in your way. At times, it may seem like others are blocking your progress, yet because we always hold the power to say yes or no, we ourselves hold the key to clearing the obstacles. We have given others permission to be a force in our lives. That is sometimes hard to acknowledge, but claiming responsibility for your life is the greatest empowerment to freeing yourself from the past and any current restraints.
Our first step is to recognize the obstacles and how we have allowed them space, believed in them and thus experienced them as real. The second step is to make a choice to be free of obstacles and restraints...whether those restraints seem to be in the outside world, or in our own mind and heart. Choosing to be who we truly are is the key to freedom from all blocks that have kept us from love and joy.
It is time to break out of all negativity and restraints and clear the way for a new way of being... first in our mind and heart, then in our thoughts and attitudes, and then in our actions. Be willing to go against the energies that surround you if they are not supportive of your highest good.
Your power has been held back as behind a dam, and it is ready to burst forth with power and purpose. Clear the way for higher energy and for a joyful and loving existence.
Gratitude for Everything
Gratitude is a great leveler of experiences. When we can get to the point where we are grateful for all our experiences, "good" and "bad", we've come to the point where we have moved beyond our personal perspective.
Our personal perspective colors everything according to whether it is "good" for us, or "bad" for us, or fits what we think is "right". But actually, everything, ultimately, is good for us, even the "negative" or difficult situations. Many times, difficult situations, like a job or relationship ending, are actually blessings in disguise. Experiences that are challenging usually bring life lessons.
When we learn to be grateful for all the ups and downs, we get a whole new perception of reality. We no longer are subject to judging our life as successful or not, happy or not, because we realize that every experience brings us closer to our ultimate goal: creating a more loving world for all.
Compassion for Everyone
Our perception of others is often tainted by judgments and preconceived opinions. This means that we do not see the person themselves. Rather, we see what we think they are, or what we've been told they are, and possibly even what they think they are.
In order to bypass our erroneous perceptions and assumptions, we must approach all people with compassion, generosity of spirit, and empathy. Everyone has challenges they are going through, and it's impossible for us to see their experience through their eyes. Their perspective influences their perception, and may very well be the exact opposite of ours.
When we look at all people with compassion, especially those who are trying our patience, we then start seeing them through the eyes of Love and Acceptance. This is how we move beyond our current biased perspective.
When we are working at moving past our ingrained perspectives, uncertainty may very well be our best friend. In the past, we were so sure that we knew what was "truth" and that things were as they appeared to be. However, we have learned that we have been misled and that things are not always as they appear to be, or as we've been told they are.
In these current times, uncertainty can serve us well. Rather than be certain about everything that we learned or believed in the past, it is time to question everything -- even, or especially, our entrenched beliefs... the ones we have held devotedly since childhood and early adulthood.
Just because we've always perceived something in a certain way, or believed that something was a certain way, does not make it so. Our beliefs, perceptions and perspectives, are just that... beliefs, perceptions, and perspectives. They are subjective and not necessarily correct.
Let's be willing to have some healthy uncertainty and doubt about the so-called "truths" that surround us.
Let's get centered and focused, and tune in to our intuition and our heart, and start seeing things the way they truly are, not the way that the mirrors of illusion lead us to believe they are.
Let's be uncertain about everything we see around us... and then go within and see what surfaces as true and real when we look at it through the heart and from a higher perspective.
Article inspired from:
Touched By a Horse Inspirational Deck
Touched By a Horse Inspirational Deck (Whispers from a Horse's Heart)
by Melisa Pearce (Author), Jan Taylor (Illustrator)
Through a lifelong relationship with horses and an extensive background as a psychotherapist, Melisa Pearce has created a fun and easy way to learn about ourselves through our interactions with horses. Inspired by the bold equine paintings of artist Jan Taylor, Melisa translated what the paintings portrayed and intuitively wrote the "message" the horses were expressing.
The combined talents of these women brings to you an exquisite deck for your personal use or a wonderous gift. By using these cards daily, you will be inspired, enlightened, and encouraged to continue your journey of personal growth.
About The Author
Marie T. Russell is the founder of InnerSelf Magazine (founded 1985). She also produced and hosted a weekly South Florida radio broadcast, Inner Power, from 1992-1995 which focused on themes such as self-esteem, personal growth, and well-being. Her articles focus on transformation and reconnecting with our own inner source of joy and creativity.
Creative Commons 3.0: This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 License. Attribute the author: Marie T. Russell, InnerSelf.com. Link back to the article: This article originally appeared on InnerSelf.com