Simple Relationship

My homunculus is a self-centered, egotistical jerk.  He doesn't give a crap about anyone but himself.  He wants to do whatever he wants, whenever he wants.  If you happen to anger my homunculus, it's not because my homunculus is short-tempered, irritable, self-conscious or at fault.  No, it's something wrong with you.  How dare you piss off my homunculus!  Essentially, my homunculus is an angry monkey that throws poo.

My Homunculus
But, of course, my inner voice doesn't define who I am.  There is another part of me - the "real me" that wants to put the angry homunculus in time-out and take away his toys.  This part of me wants to think about other people first.  I want to make other people happy and support them because I know that if I can make those around me happier, I will be much happier in the long run.  But, thankfully, through training we can teach the selfish, immature part of us to grow up and start thinking about other people.  That is the goal of this Week of Empathy.  We are going to start flexing our "thinking about other people muscles" and make them stronger.  Our first Daily Mind Game of the week is an easy one:

Simple Relationship

Task: Meditate compassionately about someone that makes you feel happy for 20min.

Info: First, this is a meditation-based challenge - find someplace private and quiet for the session. As the title suggests, you want to select someone (or something) that represents a simple relationship: no on-again-off-again significant others right now - we'll get to that later.  This relationship should make you feel happy, pure and simple.  I mention that you could think about "something" because a pet could be the target of your affection.  Also, I find that grandparents are typically a good type of relationship because they typically love us with no complications.

Goal: Send good "vibes" to your target person for the first 10min - wish them good health, tell them you love them etc.  For the second 10min, imagine them sending the good feelings your way.  Try to get relaxed and happy during the meditation.

The positive emotions we are developing with this challenge are critical for the more "advanced" forms of empathy we will be attempting later in the week.  By practicing feelings of compassion with a simple relationship, we can better extend this feeling to more complicated relationships.  Ultimately, by adding more empathy to an existing, complicated relationship, we can remain more clear-headed when things get emotional and will be more likely to act with everyone's interests in mind.  This is especially critical when you have a red-faced monkey for a homunculus.

This DMG was inspired by a guided meditation created by Diana Winston at UCLA which can be found here.  The meditation gives a good sense of the type of thinking we will be doing throughout the week.

Links: Return to the Week of Empathy - Continue to the next Daily Mind Game

No comments:

Post a Comment