*An easy guide to understanding why you want love so bad.
THANK YOU JAN GUERTZ. It wasn’t until I stepped away from someone I was really into that I realized how addicted I was to love, to affection and to relationships. I did my research and found this beautiful book… a book that I wish everybody could read, but you lazy fricks deserve something nice.. so, Merry Christmas. I summarized the whole book and added notes. Enjoy!
This is part one.
Do you do this?
- Stop yourself from doing things in fear of rejection?
- Desperately yearn for a relationship?
- Constantly distract yourself from feeling pain?
- Think negatively about yourself and other people?
- Do you hate being alone?
The main reason why we feel this emptiness and desperation to find someone to be with is our longing for love and approval. For those of you that have tasted the sweetness of security and affection in a relationship, an addiction can arise. An intimidating word, which is simply a reflection of your constant habit to indulge in this activity.. or substance. Addictions, at their core, are mostly an avoidance of emptiness. Most people can’t stand being alone, looking for distractions in their black mirrors (your phone or computer). When it’s only a matter of time before you reflect on yourself and feel pain in trying to decipher your life.
As with most things in life, our behaviour today is determined by our upbringing. As children, we are completely dependent on our mothers. “I can’t live without you”, albeit losing it’s literal sense, is given the same value as we grow older. This dependence forms rejection. We are conditioned to avoid abandonment and in essence, death.
Self-rejection is the misunderstanding that we think we are innately imperfect, worthless or not good enough. It is the core of our (constructed) self-image, the engine that drives our constant need for other people’s love and approval.
There is a common process to suffering.
A memory of distress and suffering is brought up, based on previous rejection and self-rejection.
We merge with the feeling. “I am that feeling”. Instead of “I am feeling these feelings”. Then, in not wanting to feel like that, we participate in the backwards law, the counterproductive paradox or meta rejection.
You’re angry at yourself for being angry. You hate yourself because you reject yourself and you try to detach yourself from this painful feeling.
“It’s like blaming the doctor who’s found out that you have cancer. The person or situation that triggered the painful feeling isn’t the cause of it all. The cause lies in your own fundamental misunderstanding that you’re not as good as you are.” This causes you pain. So, you try your best to cover this up and fuel your self-esteem through other people’s love and approval. That’s why this borrowed self-esteem is very unreliable. It requires constant renewal. Much like the high of buying a new phone, it doesn’t last long.
The Guest House Jalaluddin Rumi
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honourably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice.
meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes.
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.
“The core of the whole problem is precisely the idea that we need to change something about ourselves in order to be good or worth while.”
“Stopping self rejection is not giving up to your feelings of worthlessness or convincing yourself that you’re good by nature. Stopping your self rejection is like removing the dark tinted spectacles and starting to look and recognize who you really are.”
Merging – attaining certain values or beliefs for love and approval.
Dissociating – detaching yourself from certain values or beliefs for love and approval.
“When you grow ignorant of your perfect nature, the unconditional love you already have is seen as conditional and dependent on the loved one to provide. This loved one becomes the cause of your happiness, with whom you become most dependent on for it and therefore the most likely to make you feel deeply rejected. You could learn to stop self rejection because you do it yourself. The opposite of self rejection and aversion is allowing, embracing, integrating. But if you do try to love yourself as a strategy to get rid of unpleasant feelings, then that is a form of detachment and dissociation doomed to create more misery then it eliminates.”
Samsara is mind turned outwardly, lost in it’s projections.
Nirvana is mind turned inwardly, recognizing its nature.
“Isn’t it rather restrictive to always be dependent on other people’s love and approval? To be hurt every time others don’t give us approval? To always depend on other people and circumstances for our happiness and self-esteem? That isn’t how we really are! That’s the result of a series of mistakes which all start with and are nurtured by our fundamental misunderstanding of our perfect nature.”
You are with yourself for the rest of your life. Make this bond a good one. Treat yourself kindly. Look at yourself as an actual person.. because you are your own best friend.
*Based on the works of Jan Geurtz. Everything in quotes is taken directly from the book.