Reflection. What is that, really? It’s a term used pretty liberally in “conscious” talk, right? Typically as in, “Her fear of intimacy reflects my own.” A reflection often illuminates where we’re getting snagged either in how we see ourselves or our circumstances, just like a literal reflection in a mirror shows us where we missed with the lipstick, for example. And that’s helpful—trying to address our reflection in the mirror won’t ever change the reflection, as it’s only reflecting US—the image in the mirror is nothing but our own image, and certainly rubbing the mirror won’t alter the lipstick mis-swipe on our faces. Put another way, whenever we perceive fault outside of us, when we try to fix circumstances, we are only rubbing impotently at our own reflections; the flaw is within us (in our perceptions).
Which makes me think of this rather wise quote:
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
— Matthew 7:1-5 KJV (Matthew 7:1-5 other versions)
This is the basis for the concept that the “outside” world is merely a reflection of our inner world. Which used to confuse me. Surely not everything is reflective of me personally, right? Well, yes and no. In terms of what I’m referring to here, if what we see triggers an emotional reaction, there’s where our reflection is. We’re only set off by a reflection of what’s out of alignment within ourselves. Everything else goes by either completely unnoticed or without eliciting emotion from us. So when I feel that familiar emotional knee-jerk, this is my cue to get curious and ask myself, “Where am I doing this very thing to myself in my own life?” Highly useful.
And yet…here’s where we can go deeper: by differentiating the perception of self from knowledge of Self.
Let me explain.
In a relationship where we are willing to acknowledge and yet see beyond the ego, the temporary, the thoughts and beliefs of our partners, we can serve as incredibly powerful reflections and reminders for them and thus, ourselves; we can help take each other from ourselves…back to ourSelves.
As Consciousness in form, we often get things backwards: we think our brains and identities are here to lead “Us” (the True Self), rather than the other way around. In life, we get virtually no other training than identifying with the body and brain, tending to be trained out of the the inherent Knowing of Self guidance.
In my experience, any “spiritual growth” simply refers to the unlearning of misperceptions.
When we reorient ourselves to the Truth of who we Are (the unlimited, forever expanse of Love we experience as ourSelves in the joy of being in Nature, the open-heartedness of deep connection, the peace of true compassion, etc.) and allow that Truth to steer our ships, we discover quite a different kind of reflection we might offer our partners and actually, to all of our relationships—including the one we have with ourselves, while we still have that.
Yesterday, my own partner asked me to reflect what I see in him. And while I touched on Truth for sure, I didn’t do a great job. But after meditation this morning, I see what incredible value we can bring to each other’s growth (and by growth I’m always referring to the expansion of the ego’s awareness of Truth until ego itself realizes its own non-existence=absolute freedom), simply by reflecting what we Know to be True. Such as,
I see you as:
- Unlimited Love
- Infinite expansion
- Always, completely and inalterably Free
- Led by heart/Truth
- Leading (self and “other”) by heart/Truth
- Unendingly adventurous spirit experienced within the gift of form
- All-encompassing acceptance
I’ll call this Truth Reflection.
Underneath all of the insecurities, the limited beliefs, the doubts, the circular thinking and confusion we complicate our lives with by leading with the brain and identifying with form—how True does that feel? How right? How good? How incredible would it be to be reminded each morning and/or evening of Who You Really Are, and to give that gift to your partner? If your partner isn’t open to direct reflection or this feels phony to you, just reminding ourselves internally that this is who are partner REALLY is is everything and maybe all that is needed.
Rather than keeping ourselves and others enslaved by believing thoughts, perhaps we could yes, acknowledge and accept those thoughts, but also begin to free ourselves and each other by lovingly questioning perceptions and reflecting the expansive, underlying Truth, whether that’s spoken or unspoken.
While Truth Reflection is really powerful when it comes through another form, through an invited, collaborative partner of any kind, it’s also a gift we can give ourselves and, single or not, the bottom line is that we must become our own partners. Reflecting what we Know to be True is one avenue in which we can secede the power of the ego and replace it with the actual ground of Truth by allowing ourTrue Selves to lead the perceived self (the form/identity) more and more frequently on a daily basis. Truth Reflection can serve to support our disentanglement from limiting thoughts, putting the horse before the cart again and allowing us to live more and more often from a space of true Freedom.
Again, this is not to say that reflections of limitations aren’t useful—they absolutely are—in fact, it’s important to reiterate here that we can never bypass the truth of the reality of our misperceptions by denying them. Acknowledgement and acceptance is so key, and there’s nothing like that a-ha! moment when we see our own beliefs and behavior clearly and often painfully mirrored back to us in someone else. What’s valuable here is the honesty. Self-honesty. Acknowledgement of where we get snagged, of our emotions, of our projections, misperceptions and interpretations is invaluable. Acceptance of our insecurities and beliefs (in ourselves and our partners) is majorly necessary to allowing them to dissipate. If they are not acknowledged, we’re typically in resistance to them, which merely cements them more securely into place. When we can offer ourselves (and our partners if we have them) complete acceptance without buying into the snag, we can see the limitation for what it is and ALSO offer a reflection of the Truth of this BEing that we Are: Truth Reflection. That’s an insane gift, in my book.
So here’s a challenge for you if it resonates: Every morning after meditation, offer yourself a reflection of Who You Really Are. If you have a partner, offer this gift to them as well. I’m so excited to discover what this looks like and find out what kind of a day (and life) that could inspire. LiveLove&BU my friends!!
Image credit: alice-in-wonderland.net