Stay with me, this may get complicated:
I was reading the book, “The Diamond Cutter“, a book about applying Buddhist principles to business, and they started talking about “Me” and what it means and how it changes. This is kinda sorta how they described it:
“People generally think of themselves as individuals. If they are asked to contemplate what Me is to them, where their bodies stop, their Me ends. When, for example, someone with diabetes is asked to cut off their leg or they will die, they start to detach the leg from their concept of Me allowing them to mentally let go of the leg before it is physically cut. In this case, their concept of Me shrinks.
On the contrary, when a woman has a child, if anyone attempts to harm the child, she may respond as though the person was attempting to harm her. In that instance, the concept of their Me expands to include the child.
Now that we realize that the concept of Me can expand and contract. Let us examine what could happen if we expand the concept of Me to include others: If you are in a situation where your boss is mad at you and starts yelling. Normally, your response could be “Why are you yelling at me? What did I do? Who gives you the right to talk to me like that? You are hurting my feelings.
But, if you attempt for one second to expand your concept of Me to include this boss, then, you are him and you are upset and yelling. Then your response may be, “Why am I angry? What is upsetting me? How can I solve the problem? I don’t want to be upset.” Your response has now changed from defensive and maybe confrontational to one of empathy and solution finding. You may start to respond in a way that reduces your boss’s anger instead of a defending yourself from the anger.”
That is how we humans become more “compassionate” the more we see other people as ourselves, the more we authentically care about them, and respond more positively to the situations. Life throws us all situations, we can see them as positive, negative or neutral. The more we can change ourselves to see less negative situations, it seems the better life will get. It all depends on what lens you look through. Seems like it’s best we actually view life through “rose-colored glasses”.
This got me to analyze the concept ME in other contexts. Another way to think about this…
Some people see themselves as one entity and God as another. In the bible, Genesis 1-2, God created, and created and created. On the 6th day he created man in his own image , commanded us to be fruitful and multiply and then he rested. Some people take that to mean that we are an extension of God tasked to continue with the process of creation. So, some people see themselves as a part of God (or God’s body).
If that is the case, you can think of being a part of God as being a cell in the body. Although, the cell is an individual entity, can the cell really say, “Oh, I’m off now, going to do my own thing”. What will happen to the cell? More than likely, it will die. If a bunch of cells wanted to do their own thing, then what happens to the body? That’s when the body gets diseased or even cancerous.
But, if each cell expands the concept of itself to include its surrounding cells, then the surrounding cells do the same. Maybe even all the cells in a finger, see themselves as one unit, then the cells in the arm, and then the whole body. Then each cell is now working for the benefit of the whole body.
“Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body…” 1 Corinthians 12:12
It seems like the very survival of the whole body is dependent on each cell working collaboratively with the others. The lack of harmony is the beginning of death. The more each cell extends the concept of itself to include other cells, and even then the whole body, the more harmonious the body is.
So, if I expand the concept of me to include my husband, will I be more loving? And, if I expand the concept of me to include the nanny, will I be compassionate? And, if I expand the concept of me to include my neighbors, will I be more cooperative? And, if I expand the concept of me to include all my team mates at work, will I be more collaborative? And by “I”, I mean “me”, and by “me”, I mean “them”. Will they be more loving, compassionate, cooperative and collaborative with me?
Want to get our weekly blog posts in your inbox?
no spam, just wellness