Aha: I am cause in the matter of!

I can become crazy annoyed with one of my sons.  What in particular presses my buttons and has me hopping mad?  He is talking about something, sharing something, asking for something, complaining about something.  Listening, I say something like “Enough. I don’t want to hear any more. Stop. This is not the time. No more!”  What does he do?  He continues on interrupted.

What do I take that to mean?  I give it many interpretations, many stories. And it goes something like this: he does not respect me; he is selfish; he lacks social skills; he is stupid!  What does that give rise to?  Either I leave the room or I put him down through labelling or I shout at him.  Whilst I regret this later and apologise it is true that in the moment I feel justified, even righteous.

A funny thing happened today.  Son asked me to take him to buy a torch.  We enter the store, I ask one of the clerks and we get to the section where the torches are hanging.  We pick a torch and head out to the cash tills to pay. It is late, towards closing time.  With the torch in his hand son starts moving towards and checking each of the closed tills.  I tell him they are closed. He continues. I go over take the torch from him head to the only staffed desk (Customer Services), pay and head for the car.

My son is already at the car. I open it and we both enter.  And I say “Son it occurs to me that you lack common sense..” He stops me and say “I don’t want to hear it.”  What do I do?  I carry on uninterrupted. What does he say? He says “I told you I don’t want to hear it.”  What do I do?  I continue saying what I was saying without missing a word!  What does he do?  He puts his hands over his ears.  What do I do? I continue speaking!

We get home.  What hits me?  It hits me for the very first time that I am a hypocrite.  I have just done to my son that which I detest when he does it to me.  Worse still, it hits me that this is not the first time I have done this.  Then this question hits me hard: “Am I the cause of his behaviour? Did he learn it from me?”

The answer?  Yes, it is highly likely that I am the cause in the matter of how my children show up: what they say, what they do, how they say it, how they do it….

What is present for me?  A certain humility. A recognition that I am cause in the matter of my life. And that I am reaping that which I have sown – at least when it comes to the behaviour of wife, sons, and daughter.  Sitting with that I am clear that there is no space for complaining to show up. Nor any space for me to play victim.

How about you?  Where in your life are you the cause of that which shows up in your life and of which you get righteous and complain?

Author: Maz Iqbal

Experienced management consultant working at the intersection of strategy, customer, and technology. Combine a tendency to think strategically with a penchant for getting my hands dirty at the coalface of implementation.

3 thoughts on “Aha: I am cause in the matter of!”

  1. I tend to do this exact same thing with people ay work who are always complaining about the boss. They’ll complain and I’ll covertly make them wrong but then I’ll be complaining about him shortly there after. I learned that responsibility is a right now phenomenon.I am assuming you’re a landmark or est graduate. I was inthe first ne ilp and they spoke about how you can’t actually be responsible for the past because you already weren’t responsible for it. You can only be cause in the matter now for whatever you want in the relationship you have.I hope I have contributed in some way.

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  2. Hello Ben
    I thank you for your sharing some of your life with me. Yes, it is so easy, I say the default, to be righteous and make others wrong. I should know, it occurs to me that I am a master at it.

    As for responsibility, I thank you for sharing that distinction with me. It is not a distinction that I am present to. And now that I am present to it, it does open a new space up for me.

    Yes, I am a Landmark Graduate. And I am assuming that like you I have taken several courses including the ILP.

    How to end? I am grateful for your contribution to my life. And I wish you well and ask you LIVE your life!

    At your service / with my love
    maz

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  3. For instance, THE PAST: Past actions in 3D cannot be changed, but the memories of them can. So, therefore, if you rewrite your reaction to something that happened in the past and it changes YOU in the present, then what have you done? You just visited the past and have rewritten it!

    THE FUTURE: You say your future is not known to you, yet the potentials of what you might do are indeed known. As you change your mind today, in a certain way you are then changing the potentials of what you may do tomorrow. Therefore, rewriting the future is doable today. When you make an appointment to go somewhere tomorrow, does that make you a fortune teller when you arrive at the scheduled event? If you cancel the appointment at the last moment, did you change your future? “Wait a minute, Kryon. These are things we have control over, so it’s not the same as a future that is a mystery to us.” What If I told you that to us, there is no difference. “Appointments” are scheduled and unscheduled in a reality that you can’t easily see in 3D, but they are still potentials you create for yourself. ~ http://www.kryon.com/CHAN%202013/k_channel13_alberta.html

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