I always thought that I was humble (meaning, I am NOT a show-off!!) and that I didn’t really care what people think of me from the aspects of material things. However, since I’ve become more aware of my thoughts and attitude behind those thoughts, I noticed that the humbleness that I portrayed was merely a camouflage to 2 belief systems: No. 1 – mentality of lack / fear of being inferior and No. 2 – fear of showing-off arising from the mentality of superiority!
No. 1 – Mentality of Lack / Fear of Being Inferior
It’s like this… actually, I can afford this, but because I am practical I choose not to buy it. So I am happy and proud of myself that I am practical and if people say, “eh, why you use this or drive this…”, I can readily answer back, “because it is more practical.” This is very much on the surface.
The scary truth behind it is this…
I can’t afford that (due to the mentality of lack which is a false-made-truth belief). So, I have no choice but to buy this, and it is more practical anyway… The contemplation is, if I buy this, I still have extra $$$ to buy other things; but if I buy that, I cannot have other things. And by this logical reasoning the decision is made to buy this over that. And each time I meet someone whom I perceived to have ‘more’ than me, then the mind is ready with answers to defend the very idea that I hold on to, “oh.. it is more practical…” In truth, this idea stems from the space of unworthiness… Unworthy to own what is perceived of more value than what I am. The limiting beliefs surely had its way to make me feel small!
No. 2 – Fear of Showing-Off arising from the Mentality of Superiority
When I already have something that I love, I like to use it constantly. But when I meet someone whom I perceived to have ‘less’ than me, I switch from what I love into something that I could ‘live’ with for the day or for the moment. Quite differently the mind functions in this scenario because there would be no cause to ‘defend’ – as no one would be ‘putting’ me down, and I had ‘secured’ my position of not having to ‘put’ anyone down by ‘not being superior’ for the day. And this idea, also stems from unworthiness. How? Because we perceive ourselves to have more and fail to see that it is our entitlement. We feel guilty showing others what we have and there lies a stinct of unworthiness, that others would perceive we do not deserve what we have eventhough it is our entitlement. But what have what we’ve got, got anything to do with others? And why must whatever that we have or have not, be of a ‘show’ to others?
These kind of defilement had run in the mind for ages. The best part is, nobody has ever come forth to ask me, question me or put me down… And no matter how hard I tried ‘not being superior’, I could not stop anyone from feeling that they were inferior to me anyway!
To know that anything and everything that seemed so real of which I had needed to prepare myself with a defense, was just a creation of what’s in that conditioned mind. Isn’t it wonderful, that now… I can actually consciously choose again??? 🙂
This paragraph is extracted under the topic of ‘Allowing the Diminishment of the Ego’, excerpts from A New Earth authored by Eckhart Tolle.
“Another aspect of this practice is to refrain from attempting to strengthen the self by showing off, wanting to stand out, be special, make an impression, or demand attention. It may include occasionally refraining from expressing your opinion when everybody is expressing his or hers, and seeing what that feels like.”
He explains further under the same topic in different para that a powerful spiritual practice is to consciously allow the diminishment of ego when it happens without attempting to restore it. He explains that the ego is always on guard against any perceived diminished sense of self and usually is already on an automatic ego-repair mode through self justification, defense or blaming so to preserve the psychological form or false sense of “me” and that all repair mechanisms make perfect sense to the ego but are in fact, all dysfunctional.
How true that most of us live our lives dysfunctionally in a state of unconsciousness. It is therefore important to question the ideas behind our actions. Definitely to the norm of the society, it is deemed as ‘normal’ to think or act a certain way. But do we ever question ‘why’?