When it really matters, when we are really threatened, something in us seizes control and acts. Awareness of the acts we perform in this heightened state of awareness may instantly be lost to memory as we shift back to our ordinary state of awareness, like when an intense dream is immediately forgotten upon awakening.
Immediately upon shifting out of these non-ordinary states of reality our internal dialogue takes charge, filling our minds to the brim with the affairs of everyday life, as our just moments ago extraordinary adventures fade into oblivion. In psychoanalytic language, our internal dialogue delivers us to a full blown neurosis. A caricature of how it operates would be a Woody Allen/Doubting Thomas character whose mind incessantly ruminates, doubts, and judges both self and others.
The salient feature of this obsessive thinking is its fixation upon feeling offended by the actions of others or blaming the self for the way things are; in effect, feeling offended by one’s own actions and limitations.
That we all have an internal dialogue is a necessary fact of life. In fact, as the Shamans of Ancient Mexico point out, its incessant defining and judging functions allow us to interpret and navigate the solid world we live in. However, the debilitating side of this nonstop chatter in our minds is that it distracts us from our capacity to live a richer life in a state of heightened awareness.
Indeed, we can be injured by the intentional actions of others, but to attach to the constant promptings of the internal dialogue, to be offended by the behavior of other or self, is to relegate the lion’s share of one’s energy to inconsequential, emotional self-defeat. Put bluntly, it’s a major waste of energy.
We needn’t obsess to address real occasions of injury, for as previously stated, when needed, something within us will spring forth and act without the necessity of lengthy deliberation. Even the action of freezing, or leaving one’s body under the impact of violent attack, reflects instinctive knowing of how best to survive. The internal dialogue is of no value when it really counts.
Shamans recommend freeing oneself from spending one’s energy on feeling offended. The energetic savings accrued by this allows one to gain greater access to living in a richer state of heightened awareness, where one enjoys, and is fully present to, all that is possible in life.
Don Juan Matus calls this state the mood of the warrior, where one is fully energetically alive in each moment in a state of inner silence. Pragmatically, this entails refusing the promptings of the internal dialogue to attach to any interpretations of being offended, and responding instead to the actual presenting needs of each moment.
The thinking mind might have a role in deliberating a decision, but silence allows the truth of the heart to spark spontaneous right action. This is living in the Tao of heightened awareness.
The best guidance for freeing oneself from the energy drain and limiting perspective of the internal dialogue is to allow it to just be, to not engage it, to not argue with or fight against it. Rather than be offended by life, particularly in this time of great offensive talk, respond like a warrior who acts from the place of what is truly needed to survive and prevail, in the best interest of all.
Yes, acknowledge that the acts of others can injure you, and do take decisive action to protect the self whenever necessary, but don’t waste any energy on being offended by the acts of others, as the internal dialogue would have you do.
Finally, place no attachment on the outcome of your decisive actions; fulfillment is already achieved in the purity of the warrior’s decisive act.