The Fine Print
I think a lot… I mean ALOT.
I contemplate, muse and ponder everything all the time. Whether it is something someone said, something I have observed or even a passing thought, I spend time puzzling over the puzzle that is life.
I am also a HUGE watcher. I listen and look, and I take in all that is said, done and demonstrated by other human beings; some of whom I know, some I don’t.
Either way, I consciously work to notice everything, especially what isn’t said and that’s because I like the details.
I like the fine grain of life and seeing what often goes unnoticed. The artist in me is forever in awe of the subtleties that often lie in the unawareness of others. The way people touch their hair when they are nervous. Or even the way that people apologize when they have nothing to be sorry for. It’s not really the apologies that fascinate me… to be honest, it is the subtext of the apology that engages my curiosity.
Why do people say sorry for offering opinions, ideas or just speaking? I think it has less to do with being regretful and more to do with attempting to be unimposing. I think most of the time people don’t want to intrude or force their presence or take up too much space in a conversation, a room, or even in your schedule. I think it is a way of attempting to be humble.
Social media and the internet is interesting because it gives us all a chance to be anonymous voyeurs. We get to look at other people literally without them noticing. You get to form opinions, about other humans and what they do, say or think. The internet allows you to invite people in or shut people out. It allows you to inhabit another person’s “world” undetected, while stealthily collecting opinions and biases. The truth is you really know nothing about the person you are watching. You only see what they choose to show. The rest my dear Mystic is YOU. Everything else you feel or think about another person is all based on the perceptions you have.
What is so fascinating is that somehow we convince ourselves we know someone based on what we think we see. Whether the object of your attention is REAL, authentic and everything they seem to be is an unknown, there is no way to qualify their identity or the traits they seem to have that attracted you in the first place. None the less, we invest a great deal into the beliefe that is built around the person being watched… or followed.
You just don’t know the total truth of who anyone is. PERIOD.
Yeah, I know this is sounding pretty effing dark.. But trust me it’s not. Scroll on intrepid adventurer, there is a love note ahead!
First of all, let’s think about this a minute. Why do you follow a person on social media? What is it that keeps you engaged, interested and ready for more? What keeps you feeling bonded to a person despite not truly knowing them?
I think it is because you recognize something…
You recognize something that you wish to emulate or maybe its that you identify something in yourself as familiar and reflected in the image of them that you see. In other words, they have something you want to have within yourself or you see something reflected back at you, that you already possess.
Or you hate them and you just want to watch what they do so you can hate them more. HAHAHAHA didn’t think I was gonna mention that did you?!
Seriously though, the thing I want to bring to your attention isn’t so much about what other people are doing, or whether or not you should be anonymously (or not) watching them from afar. To me, those points are only smaller parts of a much larger equation.
The questions I’m interested in asking delve into you. I want to inspire you to look deeper. I want to invite you to ask yourself, what in me aligns with them? What in me is attracted to them? Is it something I see in myself or something I would like to emulate in my own life?
Taking a mindful approach, it is important to understand why you follow or support people on social media or who are in the public eye. It’s a good exercise to really examine your relationship with them or what they represent.
The reason for this self-examination is that sometimes you can find yourself following someone for reasons that might not even be your own. I’m sure that sounds weird, but the truth of the matter is that we as human beings like to feel acceptance from other human beings. We all like to feel acceptance because with acceptance comes the relative assumption of being liked and or loved… and everyone loves to be loved.
Because of this human need for acceptance, you can find yourself following someone because your friends do or if not because of your friends, then maybe because there are enough people that agree that the person being followed represents something in alignment with a certain set of beliefs or values. But is that enough to make the person being followed a real role model?
So why am I throwing all of these deeply philosophical questions at you?
Ha! Because I can… kidding… ok not kidding.
None the less I’m glad you “asked”!
You see my dear Mystic, times are a-changing’! I like to think for the better, but while these changes are happening there is much to be discovered and even more to be questioned.
For some of us who have been walking a certain path of spirituality that was not so mainstream even ten years ago, it is an exciting time! We are seeing things that we couldn’t or daren’t even speak about in certain company become increasingly mainstream. People are talking crystals, tarot cards and astrology like “no big deal.” Whereas before you were “weird” or worse. There was a time not too long ago that if you even hinted at the fact that you were into occult practices… oh yeah, I said OCCULT! There was something dark and dangerous about you.
On many levels this is great, it’s wonderful to see the diversity of beliefe emerging and becoming more and more acceptable. I love the fact that we are alive during a time that we get to witness a shift in the thought and belief paradigm that is only rivalled by about 2000 years ago when a certain sandaled rebel pissed a lot of people off. We, my dear, are in a renaissance and I couldn’t be happier!
None the less, I have to take pause. I have to wonder if all of this newfound excitement for alternative spirituality is more than just trendy? Are people really shifting and adapting to a new era of human expression or is it just the influence of a fad in pop culture? Or worse… a way to make a quick buck and grab a ton of followers? Do these folks actually study and practice what they are talking about?
Good question huh!
I hope that people are truly finding themselves closer to The Creator of all that is as well as themselves. I genuinely hope that as trends change that people will be a more evolved and enriched version of who they are experimenting with now. So this is why all the questions. For my own part, I study relentlessly. I love to learn and my bookshelves bow under the weight of all that I’m working to learn. My practice is by no means new, even if it is more public than it was a year or 5 ago.
Personally, I have been excited by more than a few people I’ve seen on social media talking about all the stuff I love… from sacred geometry to astrology, to energetic healing and light work, all the way to different forms of divination and healing practices. Only to see them fade away or worse demonstrate that they were not really who they wanted me to see. Bums me out, but this is the way it goes when people are trying to find themselves I guess.
In response, I’ve had to look very closely at what people are saying and DOING when it comes to all of this “spiritual” stuff. Now, I’m not judging, I’m not even condemning anyone. I’m just observing.
If the person or group of people I’m following begin to show behaviours or practices that don’t align with my own personal growth, truth, values or morality, I stop engaging with them. Not in anger or judgement, but in an act of self-preservation. I say it this way because everyone is on their own journey and will get to where they are intending to go in their own time despite my feelings.
I always ask myself how following someone makes me feel. Do they uplift others? Do they withhold information? Do they heal and help? Do they misdirect the truth by blaming others or circumstances? Do they act with integrity and accountability? Or do they avoid responsibility?
Most importantly… what does my gut say?
Now I know this was a long read, and if you have made it this far you are truly a determined soul, and I thank you for your attention to my thoughts.
The reason for sharing all these thoughts is to provoke questions, discussions and perhaps an examination of self. The invitation to look deeper into your social circle, your teachers, role models - guru’s, is not to judge them, rather it is to become more clear on your own path. If you can, take a good long look, scroll back through your feed and see if those that you follow are consistent, see if their message still vibrates in your heart or if something has changed. Don’t worry about what others may think… even what I think, just seek the truth of your own heart, because it is the seat of your joy.
Thanks for reading… and I hope I’m still someone you wish to share space with.