“My soul honors your soul. I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides. I honor the light, love, truth, beauty, and peace within you, because it is also within me. In sharing these things, we are united, we are the same, we are one.”
We are all fragments of the universe. We are all spiritual beings filled with infinite potential. Each of us is a piece of artwork on our own, but we also make up a much larger sculpture when we are united.
However, many times we are unable to cooperate in fitting together our portion of the art. As we get lost in the human experience, we get caught up in making our portion of the sculpture the best and the most prominent compared to others. We hold back from sharing with others what is in our minds and hearts for the art we are making. Focused on competition, we forget our true selves and lose the ability to recognize another’s true self. We miss opportunities to build off of each other’s infinite potential, missing opportunities for growth.
It is especially easy to get disconnected from the truth of our universal oneness in the face of conflict. When people disagree with one another, they are simply seeing two different perspectives. If we thought of all life as art, we might remember that people can interpret the meaning portrayed in art differently. Yet in life, we all have our own opinions and differences of opinion can cause disputes when our egos begin to interfere. Our egos give us the illusion of separation and fuel our natural need to be right. When we can set aside ego and acknowledge the fact that we are all connected, we are able to love
unconditionally and eradicate the labels that we put on one another.
But in conflict, we are usually not focusing on acknowledging the soul and the divine in the person we are in argument with. How do we stay connected to the truth that we are all one when we feel alone and isolated?
As a teenager, I constantly feel like I am not being understood, which leads me to feel frustrated and annoyed. I catch myself taking my anger out on people around me, even when they’re not the ones that have done anything wrong. When I notice myself reacting this way, what helps me most is to determine what exactly I am feeling and why. The best way that I am able to distinguish this is through journaling. Writing allows me to vent my feelings and helps me notice when I have a frustrated reaction that is exaggerated compared to what the situation really is. Then, I can take some deep breaths and bring myself back into full awareness of the present moment. By being in the present moment, the little voice inside my head begins to quiet, as I am no longer focused on it. I am able to accept the fact that the situation is what it is and that I can only change myself in the situation.
I can have more compassion and remember to acknowledge the other person’s point of view and look past their ego. In doing so, I can truly act upon the phrase Namaste and look into their soul. Instantly, my own ego is reduced in their presence and I can see and love them for who they truly are.
In this world, we are programmed to believe that we must compare ourselves to others and to compete with one another. This type of thought is the focus of the ego, which is not the authentic self; it is the final coat that we put over our art, thinking that it will hold everything in place. Instead, it only separates us. But when we are intentional about taking the time to remove the ego layer, we can look at another’s work and admire all that they have done, and see how our pieces of artwork relate to theirs. We can let ourselves be seen and really see one another. In doing so, we gain unity;
we are one.
Ayesha Patel is a high school student who strives to see the bigger picture of life and existence.