“A miracle is a shift in perception. The moment that we choose to perceive our life with love, we can create miraculous change.” – Gabrielle Bernstein
I have to share this great book I am reading right now called “Spirit Junkie: A Radical Road to Self-Love and Miracles” by Gabrielle Bernstein (and by reading, I mean listening to her audiobook of course). I’m only a few chapters into the book and I already love it. She has a pretty down-to-earth message about getting in touch with your own spirituality, which she calls “~ing” (inner guide).
This week, I read one of her chapters which speaks about the ego tricking us into idolizing someone or something, making them “more special” than others in our life. By idolizing others, it makes us feel separate from them, as if there is something within them which is better than whatever is within us. This is not just in people; it can be with jobs, hobbies, fashion, etc. Our ego makes an illusion in our mind that these people or things are better than us or that we cannot live without them. Outward projections convince us that there are those who are “special” and those who aren’t. This separation is a game the ego plays to keep control over us, encouraging the mind to remain critical of others and ourselves.
We forget one important thing: we are all one. There is no “better than” or “worse than”. Not only do we find others to be “more special”, but we identify ourselves that way too when we think of ourselves above anyone else. As long as these messages are filling our mind, it is impossible to believe in equality or oneness with the universe.
Gabrielle encourages her readers to “out the ego” but admitting to the projections we are placing onto others, weakening the effects the ego has over us. Namaste, a very popular word in the yoga world, means: the divine in me honors the divine within you. Gabrielle uses a similar phrase in her book, stating: “the light I see in her is a reflection of the light within me.” We are all equal. It is so important that we stop idolizing others because we are all the same.
This week, I was very encouraged by this realization. I do have idols. There are some friends I follow on Facebook or other yoga instructors that I find myself idolizing all the time. I think thoughts like, wow! She is so successful and here I am doing nothing with my life. I wish I had what she has. Or similarly, I love what she does with her yoga teaching. She is so creative. I don’t have what it takes to compete with people like her, full of so many good ideas. She’s amazing, and I’m just me.
In thinking these thoughts, I am not only putting people on pedestals they can hardly live up to, but I am reflecting back my personal fears and criticisms of myself. Obviously: not healthy at all! So, I took the challenge to “out the ego” by contacting some of my idols. I even text my husband: “Honey, I am sorry I have idolized you and put you on a pedestal that is hard to live up to.” Of course, he responds with this: “wtf does that mean?” Hahaha! But seriously, stepping out of my comfort zone and reaching out to some of my idols was very empowering.
I sent this email to a yoga teacher-blogger-instagramer I love:
“Okay, this is gonna sound kind of silly but I am trying this new thing where I “let go” of idolizing people so I can start to see more equality among everyone. In doing so, I am challenging myself to reach out to the people I idolize in order to help me get over it. I think your success at such a young age in incredible and I idolize you for it and your ability to help so many people. However, I acknowledge that the same light within your resides within me too and we are the same! Thank you for inspiring me! (Sorry, I know this may be weird because I am a total stranger… hope you don’t mind!)”
I was so shocked to hear back from this busy entrepreneur. Her response was:
“Hi Taryn, Not silly at all! I actually love this… So, so true that we’re all the same and I’m so honored to hear from you on this endeavor 🙂 Thank you for the kind words, for getting in touch, and of course, for doing yoga with me. It makes my day! Big love, Erin”
I seriously feel better already and I encourage y’all to step out of your comfort zone and admit that you wrongly idolize others too!
Namaste y’all! ❤ Taryn xoxo