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Pleasing

Glossary of Spiritual Wisdom

Excerpts about Pleasing

Taking an Aim to Not Try to Please Other People

This brings us to a method that deals primarily with indulgence: the path of the warrior. When you are working on yourself, you need the attitude of the warrior. Not the worrier, the warrior. You need to live the life of the impeccable warrior. To really do the Work, to really be able to succeed, you need to live and work like an impeccable warrior. Everything needs to be done with impeccability. Every attitude, every task, every aim needs to be done impeccably. Now what does that mean? To do something impeccably doesn’t mean to do it perfectly. Let’s look at some examples of what it does mean. Suppose you know you need to work on a certain tendency; for example, you want to stop trying to please other people all the time. Perhaps you take an aim not to try to please other people. How can you do that impeccably? It means you do the best you can in terms of that aim, always, at all times. This requires many things. First of all, it requires awareness. You need to pay attention to yourself so you can catch the impulses, the desires, the feelings of wanting to please somebody else. It doesn’t mean you have to be aware of everything, of every single thing all the time, because that is not possible. You cannot be aware of everything at every single moment. Being impeccable means doing all that you can do at that moment. It means doing your best, your very best.

Thinking Primarily of Yourself in the Name of Love and Service

This is a description, not a judgment. This is the state of affairs. Even when we act in humanitarian ways, serving or helping people, isn’t there some turmoil and anxiety over whether or not you’re doing it right, being loving enough, helpful enough? This is the same ego perspective. You are not as concerned with other people as you are with yourself. You are thinking primarily of yourself in the name of love and service. When you want to please people, why do you want to please them? When you do something for somebody, why do you want to do this? You want to please them from your own point of view, for your own reasons. Then you get disappointed if they are not appreciative. You feel your love or your gifts are not accepted. Regardless of what situation you are in and what you feel, you’re like a shell full of reactions that bounce around inside you like ping pong balls. “Am I comfortable? Did I do the right thing? Will they like me? Did I make the best choice? Does that person really understand what I said?” All this is going on inside the shell. Ping-pong, ping-pong, ping-pong! From the outside this looks pretty weird. Most of the time what’s happening outside has nothing to do with what’s going on inside, all the ping-pong balls bouncing back and forth. Whether you’re feeling happy or miserable, it’s the same basic point of view, the same basic perspective. There’s an island with boundaries. “Whatever is inside these boundaries is mine. What happens is mine, me, for me.” This is the “I” perspective, the self perspective, the ego point of view. It’s not that this point of view is a part of you, it is you.

Whatever You Do to Please Your Father Stands in the Way of Experiencing Brilliancy

Usually, when you consider a certain aspect or manifestation of Essence, the specific psychological barriers against it arise as particular issues. And that’s why the issues of father came up when we started with intelligence, which is one of the qualities of Brilliancy. So the barrier against experiencing and embodying the particular aspect of Brilliancy is the unmetabolized relationship with father, and the associated conflicts and vicissitudes. We’ve seen many things about how we tend to project Brilliancy on father, or father on Brilliancy, and all the issues that arise from that—the hatred, the anger, the hurt, and so on. This means that the barrier can manifest in many ways. If you think unconsciously that father and Brilliancy are the same, then you will not be able to recognize Brilliancy as part of your natural endowment. That’s one way. Another way is that you believe you can’t have Brilliancy because you’re afraid of your father. Or perhaps just the mere fact of projecting it stops you from having it. Maybe you feel you have to appease daddy, or agree with him—whatever it is that you do to please him—and that stands in the way of experiencing your Brilliancy. Before, we explored your relationship with your father; now you want to see how that relationship prevents you from feeling that luminous part of your Essence, the actual presence of intelligence that is part of you.

Brilliancy, pg. 244

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