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Forums » Archive » Be there for somebody 
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Author Message
Joined: 6/19/2001
Posts: 5468
Posted on Monday, March 24, 2003 8:25:00 PM
 
It happened to you before, that your friend or a stranger talked to you about their life problems etc, and you did not know how to respond. This is a short excurpt from an email that may help you to deal with situations like that:

"It happened to you before, that your friend or a stranger talked to you about their life problems etc, and you did not know how to respond. This is a short excurpt from an email that may help you to deal with situations like that:

"We love to receive emails from our members and Inner
Journey subscribers. We love to learn of your experiences
and to connect back with you personally. But for those of
you who are working through challenges, I (Patrice)
continually struggle with the wording of my replies. Just
how do I choose the right words to offer support?

For those of us on the spiritual path, the right words
and actions are extremely important. They must accurately
represent what we believe to be true. For example, I
believe that everything that happens to us is perfect for
our learning. If people who write are suffering, my heart
can break in response to their pain but at the same time,
I know there’s divine grace in what’s happening. Pain is
a powerful force for awakening ... it can bring great
gifts.

Whatever the case, it is not my place to judge whether
something is good or bad. If I sympathize with their
situations, it suggests that their experiences are bad or
unfair, and that is not the case. It’s also not my place
to give advice ... for two reasons. First, I should not
give advice unless they have specifically asked for it.
Second, my truth is not their truth. And their truth is
what matters here.

It’s not going to help someone in distress if I steal the
focus of the interaction away from them by sharing how my
experiences relate with theirs. "I know just how you
feel. Here’s what happened to me..."

When we understand how soul works through us, we see that
our aim in supporting someone is not to get rid of their
pain and suffering. Instead, we want to assist them to
understand what the pain is trying to teach them -- to
find meaning in their distress.

So how do we support others in suffering? Here are some
perspectives that may help:

- Simply BE with them.

- Be fully present to them - be open, attentive and aware
with body, mind and soul.

- Do not judge, sympathize or monopolize the conversation.

- Do not offer advice unless they specifically ask for
it. Even then, it’s best to ask them questions that will
lead them to their own answers.

- Be present to our own experience and authentic in our
feelings. This way, we live our own truth and this
creates the space for the other person to live theirs.

- Through questions, help them explore their underlying
fears, payoffs, choices, aspirations and meaning. Support
them in seeing new perspectives.

I’m exploring how to be fully present through emails. I
know that at higher dimensions, distance and time have no
reality. When I receive your email, I can be there for
you, no matter what distances and time lags are involved.
But please excuse me if the words I write to affirm our
connection seem indifferent. My intention is always to
honour your experience."
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Forums » Archive » Be there for somebody 
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