I verbalised my feeling in the first break about the nasty taste in my mouth left by Robert’s comment to me that he is ‘very well’, which did not feel genuine. It’s the sort of thing I used to say to avoid verbalising the fact that I was not okay. That may be why I felt uneasy, because Robert’s behaviour was showing me myself. Because I am verbalising things more now, I am ready to see just how I have been in my life. I used to say things I thought people wanted to hear, or I kept things to myself, or I was manipulative and teased people into asking me more about how I am rather than simply coming out with it.
Karaj – ‘Take people and what they say at face value. Don’t waste time and energy second-guessing. Be positive about what they say – it has an amazing effect – and appreciate people where they are.’
- Stay calm under stress
- Be straight with people about what I want
- Be straight with people about where I want to go – they don’t necessarily need to know where I am heading but I need to be straight with them (if I think they are threatening to sabotage my process).
- Practice on people.
We all worked together to change the water pipe. I paired with Robert and was tentative at first. I am always wary of his mood – having to make sure that ‘daddy’ is not annoyed or frustrated or fed up, before we can have some fun – but once I overcame that we had our usual comfortable dialogue and we worked well together. I tried to make sure I did not issue orders but still managed to be effective in getting him involved.
Towards the end I was rushing about when trying to instruct Dev on what to do with the toilet boarding. As a result my instructions were not clear. Slow down – especially when I am in a hurry.
The feedback session at the end went on until midnight. It finished on an important point, brought about by Ishwar’s question to Dev. He asked Dev whether he believed what he had written in his latest appraisal. Karaj turned the question back to Ishwar suggesting he is really asking himself whether he believes. And if so, what does he believe? Dev was provided with something similar to contemplate: given his script – that his parents have let him down – why has he trusted and stuck with Karaj? He went on to tell both Ishwar and Dev not to try and answer the question but to simply contemplate the question.
Karaj – ‘Live in the question, don’t live in the answer. To live in the question means that you are alert, open and alive. To live in the answer means you are too focused, closed and dead. Be quiet, be gentle and live in the question. This is not about script, it’s about humanity. The day you realise the answer to the question ‘What’s it all about?’, it is devastating, but out of the devastation comes serenity.’
[Update: The above quote may seem harsh and uninspiring but Karaj is not alone in his thinking. Here is another quotation, from Bertrand Russell: ‘The secret to happiness is to face the fact that the world is horrible‘. Their reasoning is that if we do not accept certain truths about life and the world, we will always experience frustration and despair. However, there is a person I love deeply who thinks very differently. For her the world is a wonderful place. A playground of exploration, experience and love. And she is right, for if the world were full of people like her, it would indeed be a much more beautiful place than it already is.]