The self-empowerment road is very strange. It requires us to make some weird connections. In our society we have the “nice people” and “the nasty people.” We look to media and culture for cues on how to define and react to both groups. For example: 1) the nice people pay their taxes, while the nasty people spend the tax payers’ money; 2) the nice people work and go home to their families, while the nasty people lead selfish and sadistic lives; and 3) the nice people will go somewhere relatively pleasant when they die, while the nasty people will more than likely go to a place of torment. Now, this way of thinking would be completely harmless if the world we live in wasn’t built on duality, but it is, and that makes the way we think of and treat the “nasty people” a self-empowerment issue.
So why exactly are these nasty people here? Why do we have to deal with narcissists, psychopaths, pedophiles, and sociopaths? They’re not just in corporate business, politics, and media, they’re everywhere. They’re family members, coworkers, lovers, and acquaintances. We attract them on a subconscious level all the time but we still don’t know the lesson that we’re supposed to learn from them. I’ve been involved with narcissists my entire life. As soon as I could escape from one, I would run right into the arms of another. I eventually began to believe that my life was a cosmic joke, and this brings me to my point.
What I’ve learned so far on my journey is that if you judge anyone outside of you as better than you, worse than you, or different from you, you are embracing a victim’s mentality. We are all characters in this universal play. But without conflict we have no story, and without antagonists there would be no conflict. Do you think the director despises the actor who plays his lead antagonist? How could he, when he gave him the part? And do you think the playwright abhors his antagonist as a character? How could he when he wrote him in?
The victim’s mentality was cute while it lasted. It seemed to work for me for a while. I thought it made me feel better to see myself as morally superior to those who were more powerful and glamorous than I was-maybe that’s why I like reality TV so much. I thought I could get away with never looking at my own contradictory fear of and desire for power. But that doesn’t work with the soul because it is always trying to integrate into wholeness. This is the reason for the shadow.
“Gee Carla, maybe you keep attracting narcissists because you need to see the narcissist in yourself.” It was just a thought, but a very persistent one that made me cringe. I HATED being called selfish by my family members as a kid. I also couldn’t stand it when a few of my friends thought that I was spoiled. I was the good kid who got teased for the way I spoke and how I dressed and that was it. I couldn’t be selfish. I couldn’t be spoiled. I needed to be good. So I stuffed that aspect of me down. I banished it into my shadow, and then I wondered why it kept following me around everywhere… don’t let me get me! (I love P!nk so much)
Things got even more confusing when I found humanity in some of these “nasty people.” First there was the girl that told me she was mean to me because she envied my loving home life. Then there was the manipulative friend who told me that she didn’t mean to be clingy, but she knew she was supposed to learn something from me. Then there was the ex-boyfriend who told me that he despised my cheerfulness, but envied my influence on people. And then there was the boss who was sexually harassing women, but confided in me (before I found out what he was up to) that he was a refugee and actually saw people killed in front of him as a child.
Thinking of these people this way was never part of the plan. I was simply supposed to do my INFJ door slam on them and deem them as detriments to society. This would allow me to once again come out as the chastised, misunderstood, and abused victor. I desperately wanted to hold onto this way of thinking. But first I realized that everyone is complicated; and then I learned that everyone is playing a role. These new revelations did not allow much room for huffing, puffing and feeling sorry for myself.
There was no way out of responsibility once I chose to believe that everyone was a reflection of me. Even celebrities gave me a glimpse of what I’d banished into my shadow. You think you hate somebody, but you really want to be them. You want to be glamorous, powerful, and celebrated, but somewhere along the way you got the message that you should not want these things. So you put celebrities down and look for telltale signs of their unhappiness, instead of realizing that those qualities you envy are already inside of you. You are glamorous, powerful, and celebrated. You just need to know that it’s safe to be so.
When you go even deeper you realize that before we took on these physical bodies, we picked the roles that we wanted to play. We chose to be either a light-worker here on Gaia or a test. But no matter what role we chose, we knew that we all originated from the light. And we knew that the ultimate goal of our role was self-awareness for the light.
This is what I choose to believe now. This viewpoint has slowly liberated me from the need to be “good” and the need to be “right.” My struggle with self-esteem has been pretty intense, but at least I can choose my own empowerment.
In his guidebook for the Power Animal Oracle card deck, Steven D. Farmer says this, “Let go of the illusion that you’re somehow a victim. Know that you always have a choice in any and every situation. Take responsibility for the consequences of that choice, and stop holding onto any beliefs that you have to somehow suffer through or endure the circumstances of that choice. Once you fully allow this reality, you will automatically shift into experiencing greater control over your life…
“Your soul has made a choice to incarnate into the body and being of the one that you are. Once you surrender to that fact, it becomes even more difficult to play the victim, and your ultimate trust in life becomes magnified. You can choose to hear and respond to that inner voice or to quell and run from it. So choose. Do what makes your soul sing, and do it with gusto and passion.”
I read this when I pulled the Horse card in my oracle reading today. Happy galloping!