Deception is a part of nature. It is an everyday, naturally occurring part of life. Look at how animals use their fur and coat to blend into surroundings. Look at the lizards who can change their colors. The female ducks are brown looking, the male ducks are colorful. Some animals use these traits to blend in and protect themselves, some to blend in and attack prey easier. Either way, deception is natural.
Don’t forget, we have an animal biology as well. Naturally, humans are deceivers. It is important to acknowledge this in yourself. Deception is a principle of the world just like gravity or structure. You deceive others and vice versa.
Perhaps this doesn’t have to be a total downer of a post. Some deception may be used to cover up things that would appear much worse than they are. Unfortunately, deception never works out in the context of relationships. This is why affairs don’t work out and cheating doesn’t work out. In a relationship there can’t be any deception from the beginning and yet deception is a naturally occurring phenomena. So how do we ensure that we aren’t sabotaging our relationship? And how can we trust anyone knowing that it is part of their nature to deceive?
Understanding the intention behind a relationship can help. Is this relationship just made to pass the time or out of desperation? Is the primary intention self-serving? If that’s the case you better watch out. Try to remove yourself quickly and quietly. Sometimes getting out of a relationship requires days or weeks of mental pre-paving so that when the tear finally occurs you aren’t left bleeding out. You may be dating a low quality person, one who has made their intentions clear to you and it doesn’t have anything to do with you or the “us.” You might be with someone who deceives others about your relationship and deceives you. You would be in real trouble at this point. Yet as you begin to separate yourself you become a guilty party in deception.
Look around you, deception IS everywhere. It is in your nature and everyone you meet’s nature. How can we cope with this? Communication is a great start. If the person you want to clear things up with can’t communicate then they are saying they would rather choose lies than honesty. You have to turn away from this – you can’t change them and although truthfulness is obviously the better choice for you they may have hidden something so horrendous that for them, the lie is better than the truth.
Ugly isn’t it? Yet it is part of nature. So you must accept it. Take ownership of your contribution and try to clarify your intentions before you move about in this world. Good luck.
Look at a river. Be amazed. What is so fantastic about the river is how the water continually moves with great, constant and steady force in places and in other places the water is calm and still or even circulating back. Even within a few yards or feet of one another these two velocities of the same body of water can be found. It speaks to the power of water, the never ending effort of the water to move and flow towards it goal, across any object, despite any setback the water flows. It will flow every second, even after you leave the river and stop observing, the river flows continually.
There are many metaphors in the behavior of a river yet they can all be likened to energy. I like to observe a river and see these reflections. First, I think about my thoughts and how they, for better or worse, are a constant stream that never tire like the river. No point in trying to stop them or resist them or even engage them – they will do as the water and continually flow with indomitable commitment. Second, I listen to the sound of the river and try to hear only that. I allow the sound of the river to be the captain of my thoughts. As if the sound is talking to me and this works well because the sound is constant and keeps my attention. I can let any other mental chatter slide because the sound of the river doesn’t weaken. It is interesting to see what other songs come into my mind during this exercise. Third, I like to think of the rocks and paths beneath the river. That if the water was gone the area below would look walkable though it would have been shaped by the strength of the river. And I’ll picture other walking paths in the woods as being submerged in water, covered by the river. In this way I can begin to sense how the water interacts with other elements of the earth…wood, air, mountain, life,..and that water everywhere is connected. It is like a blanket.
- Try meditating near a river and staring off in the distance just above the water at dusk or night. In some situations you can sense or even see the essence of the river floating along smoothly above the water’s surface.
- Another good meditation tool is to stare at one area of the river where there is some turbulence and try to see all the ripples and white water that occurs in your field of vision simultaneously. This is called looking at nothing but seeing everything.
When you leave the river and go back to your home, work or city don’t be fooled – the river is still there running with as much commitment as when you were observing it. Even now, the bodies of water you’ve seen are still doing their thing. Water is powerful because of it’s relentless drive. If your zodiac sign is cancer, scorpio or pisces then your element is water. Can you see any of yourself in the behaviors of the river?
Which number of lifetime are you currently living? If you are still young and new you’ll be traveling a very different path from a soul who has lived many times. I think we are born here from a non-physical place so that we can learn new things here and continue to refine and add to the non-physical soul. Master Ni says, “the world is a place where the souls have come for the process of purification and refinement.” Accepting that, it then becomes important to acknowledge that not all human beings you will interact with are in the same process as you. Don’t be arrogant: no matter how much you know there’s always someone who knows more. Even still, there are many who are not yet interested in their own inner refinement or even willing to look.
So how old are you? What are your interests? How into spirituality, reflection and growth are you? Do you have a sense about the question: What are you here for? Or do questions like that make you uncomfortable or seem trivial?
If you’ve lived many times you have had many opportunities to learn therefore you will most likely be interested in more esoteric ideas and experiences. If you are new you will be more interested in worldly ideas or concerned with the ego. Perhaps this explains how there is such a great variation of interests among people. How is it that some people only want plastic surgery and to travel the world while others only want to meditate and look inward?
If you’ve been born again you don’t remember much of your previous lives. It takes a few years for you to catch up to where you left off. It is a slow process to shed off the impermanence of this reiteration and connect with the deeper subtle truths underneath. Each new lifetime, depending on the work you did in the past life, you progress a certain amount. My guess is that the progress is more gradual than sudden. It is undeniable that every human is born with challenges here – will they face them, learn from them? Maybe not, maybe that’s not their path.
When choosing people to socialize with, what level are you connecting to them? An animal level, earthly level or spiritual level? It is my conclusion that two people on different paths or too distant in their number of lifetimes will not travel together for very long in this life yet there’s always a reason why you have been led to interact with someone. Learn, grow, and let it go. Eventually, keep all your focus inward on your own purification and, further still, learn to appreciate those you’ve interacted with despite the pleasantness or unpleasantness of the interaction.
Or another way to say it is do not go with things that are unnatural. Here is my interpretation at the present moment of what Taoism is about in one aspect.
Have you ever found yourself in a real psychological difficulty? I’m talking about depression, anger, obsession, all the bad things. It is not natural to be psychologically disturbed. My theory states that if you are obviously having a non-natural difficulty it is because the upsetting situation you got into came about not-naturally. Therefore, only do what is natural.
If you’ve forced a situation to occur generally the results are not positive. They are hard to deal with and that is not natural. This happens because you forced the situation rather than letting a different situation naturally occur. If you find yourself having to deal with some really tough thoughts or patterns of thought then maybe try saying to yourself that this is not natural. You are having a not natural reaction to a situation that did not occur naturally. Both the situation and your reaction were not natural. Therefore, you have to let it go. It was not real. It was forced or contrived and simply not rooted in the only thing that has any power – nature or naturally occurring things.
Nothing in nature is trying to be something it isn’t. That is why nature works so well and is so astounding. Go with your own nature. Don’t try to be something you aren’t, don’t try to have something that doesn’t come on it’s own, don’t force anything.
I hope this sheds some light onto the formerly confusing (for me) phrase “go with the flow” or “go with your own nature.” In the future to avoid unnatural reactions (which are miserable and hard to break) you should only do what is natural. You have no power to create things that are not natural.