It was probably something someone said.. or it was my own thoughts bouncing around – but I started thinking about my desire to control (people, places, things, outcomes – you name it.) I usually talk myself away from that cliff; I have been “in the rooms” for a while now and I know that down that way madness lies.
I understand the illusory nature of control – really- there is no way to CONTROL another person; you can limit their choices or make consequences that are uncomfortable to urge people in a certain direction. But the decisions essentially remains their own.
Outcomes can be for a whole range of behaviors, such as: “If you come home after curfew I will take your phone / car keys / privileges” and the like. You haven’t “controlled” your child – you have placed specific outcomes as the result of actions taken or not taken. Your employer has “controlling” limits of timeliness, job completion, condition on the job and so on. You don’t comply you loose your job and so on. These are straightforward and clear.
The messy desires to control come in subtle forms in thoughts and behavior as well as in my own responses to others. I want someone to like me. I want my job but I want others AT my job to be different. I want to let my adult children be adult and independent but I want them to BE a certain way – or DO a certain thing. I want I want I want. This takes up space between my ears and and does nothing for our relationship or the outcomes I WANT.
Where does the fullness of “HUBRIS” come in? It comes in at the point where I don’t see beyond my wants.
I lack the words and images express what I feel now in my mind. The 3d image explains how I perceive HUBRIS now. The images are three dimensional and I can only explain 2D. Dominoes. Lets say I take over from my Higher Power, the universal spirit, and GET WHAT I WANT. I only see ME and the NEXT domino. What I DON”T SEE are all the dominoes that come after that; their life journey, their ability to learn and grow from their experiences. I don’t see the people and situation impacted by THEIR behavior and choices and so on. If I were to control the tipping of the next domino I will have affected ones after and after and after – and all of the subsequent domino paths and so on. I have in essence “taken responsibility” for so much more that I cannot know and cannot see. World Record Dominoes 2013
Have I really taken responsibility for so much more, that I cannot know and cannot see? NO! Because I am NOT in control; the battle is an illusion in my mind. After a certain age we are able to make choices. WE really make choices about what we have before us and acceptance is a huge step to freedom. And it is in understanding that I don’t control and am not controlled that I can really find freedom.
HUGE NOTE: I am powerless over my addictive substances and behaviors. I have no control over what they do to me when I act and use- SO I have accepted the consequences of Jail, Institutions or Death and CHOOSE NOT TO USE because I see that clearly.
No illusion there, one day at a time.
the author of “Yoga and the Twelve Step Path”, a leader of Y12SR classes, and the creator of SOAR(tm) (Success Over Addiction and Relapse) a teacher certification training she holds with her good friend Kent Bond E-RYT500. Find out more about her, her classes and the training at www.yogarecovery.com