Archive for the 'Relationship' Category

The Co-Creational Act – Releasing Hidden Light

A Solstice Post – an excerpt from the writing: God, The Universe Embryo.

When I look up at the night sky and see the bright stars engulfed by darkness it brings to mind the majestic human story down here on Earth.  This is a powerful contemplation that takes me from the here-and-now inside light itself… to then travel all the way back into the core of our humanness and the evolution that presses its way upon us now.

There is light and there is ‘hidden light’, which our scientists call dark matter or dark energy. Recent observations conclude that 95 to 96 percent of the universe – all the space in between the stars – is dark energy. Like the stars, so too the human is engulfed by darkness, the void that contains all that has not been lit yet. Our work is to claim the void, to fill it with presence and release its hidden purpose and light. This is how we participate in the co-creative act, inside ourselves and with all that surrounds us.

When you meet a stranger, the space between you is a void. Then you begin a conversation. You exchange references and views. You find areas of shared interest and commonality. You create streaks of light in the void between you. Then a new thought appears; an innovative idea shows up, and you get energized. Your conversation transports both of you to a different place and time.  You find yourselves on the edge of discovery, creating a new world of possibilities. Inside that space, inside such a conversation, hidden light gets released from its concealment as you become participant in the co-creational act.

(God, The Universe Embryo – Originally written on October 1998)

© Aviv Shahar

What Chris Can Teach Us About The Anatomy Of Compassion

Chris was a good engineer. He was one of a dozen engineers on his team to answer service calls. Methodical and thorough, Chris was well respected by his team members. Still, he was not the star type. Quiet, a little shy, never seeking center stage, Chris’s focus was on the task at hand. One day his team took ownership of a new service contract. JD was the chief contact on the client end. Within a couple of weeks it became clear that JD was a demanding and extremely high maintenance client.  Every Tuesday or Wednesday with no exception, the phone would ring and JD would be on the line, sometimes even twice a week. If that was not enough, JD did not make his calls easy on the team.  He was impatient, angry and thankless.  The team felt that his calls were abusive and obnoxious. JD was “burning” one engineer after another. Within a few weeks, there was absolutely no one prepared to take his calls. People learned to recognize his voice and when they heard it, he was immediately transferred to Chris. Chris was the only person on the team who was ready and willing to service JD’s calls. He would patiently reply, talk JD through the technical issues and resolve every problem presented. Chris never seemed to get offended or upset with JD’s demeanor. He serenely and compassionately solved the problem and moved on. It quickly became a legend that Chris was somehow able to handle the most difficult client the company had, and that slowly, gradually, JD began to change. Not that he was pleasant but he seemed to respect and like Chris, even when he remained difficult for anyone else to handle. One day someone asked: how can you be so understanding and patient with such an abusive client? Chris replied: Every time I take the call I remind myself that I have to deal with this man for twenty or thirty minutes, but he has to deal with himself all day long, seven days a week. This thought immediately fills me with compassion.

This week, when someone annoys you and you are about to lose your temper, think about Chris. Realize that most often frustration and anger is an expression of people’s own pain and struggle, which they are unable to contain or rebalance. Remember, they are not against you; they simply struggle to live with themselves. Have compassion for them. Remember they have to live with themselves all the time. If they behave this way with you, it must be very difficult for them to live with themselves. Be thankful you live with you. Understand that at times you have to deal with people in great pain, and you cannot always help, but you can have compassion for them. Live and let live.

© Aviv Shahar

Souls On Deck – A Brief

Here are a few gems (compiled in brief format) spoken by the people present in our recent Souls On Deck circle – a group of pioneering practitioners, poets, space makers, agents and catalysts of emergence and healing:

“History gets in the way of our aspirations and possibilities.”

Questions from Dale Nienow to reflect on to help us move into presence here and now:

  • What do I need to let go of in order for this group to flourish?
  • What do you need from this community to show up fully with your gifts?

Series of process Insights:

  1. Notice what is going on.
  2. Name it. Make us aware.
  3. Honor history. Respect the journey.
  4. Find where you are meant to be.
  5. Attend to emergence.
  6. Let go of what holds you back from showing up at full.
  7. Create a space for others to flourish without becoming invisible.
  8. Tend to legacy.
  9. Take care of yourself. Your story matters.
  10. Listen to what is spoken. See what we are being shown.

Love Is 100 Times Better

Why do so many relationships hit a brick wall?

Too many people insist on holding onto frozen dreams instead of realizing that a relationship is a learning journey.  You work at it. You work at it hard and you work at it soft and you make discovery, learning and growing central to your relationship. You listen to each other and you listen to yourself. You learn to not “should” all over each other. You make space, you encourage and you try to take the higher roads. You live and let live and you then discover that it makes every year a bit better because you are able to take in more about life, more about each other and more about growing together.

The biggest mistake people make is to turn around at age 45 or 55 and say we don’t love each other the way we did at 25, it doesn’t feel the same. Well, of course not. What both of you were at 25 is frozen in time. You are now 45 or 55 – who says it’s supposed to feel the same? You are different; your partner is different. You have experience, wisdom, perspective and you have managed to overcome adversity. You are more set in some of your ways and at the same time you can grow and evolve in other ways. If you listen to each other’s growth and pay attention to your own—love at 45 and 55 is deeper, more interesting and fascinating and 100 times better than it was at 25, and it helps both of you to continue to evolve.

Have you noticed the two thirds of EVOLVE is love? Does that not tell us that love is the inner propulsion of growth, development and evolution?

© Aviv Shahar

The Greater Love

Why is language so confused (and confusing) when it comes to love? Why are so many people confused about love?

Falling in love has little to do with love and yet love is the word that is used. Infatuation and attraction are some of the words that describe what people experience when they say “I fell in love”. When attraction and infatuation fade they say, “We just fell out of love.” It’s not surprising that so many young people are confused about love.

‘Falling in love’ infers that we stumble into love without effort, without thought and most importantly, without the mindset that relationships require work and a steady influx of renewal and recommitment.  We can love our new car, a different house or the latest TV program, but these ideas convey little or no connection to human capacity for love.

“I do what I love and it energizes me” is one aspect of love and then there is a greater love. This love is not about what you do when you feel like doing it. This greater love is about what you do even when you don’t feel like doing it.

You don’t feel like getting up at night out of a deep sleep, but as soon as you hear a crying child or baby, you are up. Great love is about what you do in spite of what you may feel like doing at that moment. There are short, fleeting feelings and then there are durable deeper feelings. Personal growth is about learning to discern and differentiate one from the other.

The greater love is found not in the transitory, fleeting feelings but in the actions of determination born of devotional, durable and renewable feelings. There is love in commitment, love in service, love of making things better, and love of serving others who are in need. There is love of the human possibility, and the love of what you are called to do and be.

Show me a great endeavor and I’ll show you a person who follows the greater love.

© Aviv Shahar

The Greatest Act Of Generosity

Your living presence is the most precious thing you have. Take it away and you take life itself away. All the things you own won’t mean a thing when you are gone.

What then is the greatest act of generosity? It is offering your presence, unreservedly. Giving your mindful presence to another human being is the most precious gift you can give. Offering your full attention and presence is what lifts the conversation from everyday to sacred. Your full presence is the greatest act of generosity.

© Aviv Shahar

The Biggest Change Ever – When Adding One Means Adding Ten

Can you think about a situation when adding one means adding ten? Take a moment to think about this conundrum before you read on. Don’t cheat.

Did you find the answer? Well, here it is…

When your first child is born.

I first became aware of this change a few months after our son was born 20 years ago (1987). No one alerted me to this phenomenon so I felt I had discovered something big, and since then I have explained this countless times over when coaching managers and friends who were about to become parents for the first time.

Before a couple has their first child, they have no idea how exponentially more compound their situation is about to become. From two relationships the equation evolves into twelve relationships. That’s right. This is not a print mistake. 12 relationships! But you need to sensitize yourself before you realize it. Here is how it works. First there is just the two of you. This means there are two relationships. Your relationship with your spouse and your spouse’s relationship with you. Put differently, there is how A relates to B and how B relates to A.

Now, when the two become a triangle with the addition of child, ten more relationships are added to the equation to total 12 relationships all together:

  1. Father’s relationship with mother
  2. Father’s relationship with child
  3. Father’s relationship with mother in the child’s presence
  4. Father’s relationship with child in the mother’s presence
  5. Mother’s relationship with father
  6. Mother’s relationship with child
  7. Mother’s relationship with father in the child’s presence
  8. Mother’s relationship with child in the father’s presence
  9. Childs’s relationship with father
  10. Child relationship with mother
  11. Childs’s relationship with father in the mother’s presence
  12. Child’s relationship with mother in the father’s presence

For those of you with two children… well, can we get a clever mathematician to help us here – how many dynamics of relationships are there in a family with two children and in a family with three children? I’ll let you work out how this applies to the in-laws on your own.

© Aviv Shahar

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