By Suma Varughese April 2010 Failure is part of the process of success and life goes through many mutations before arriving at the desired outcome. So anchor yourself in faith Suma Varughese is Editor-in-Chief of Life Positive.Write to her at email@example.com One of the key shifts that occur when moving on to the path is that one begins to have a more nuanced approach to life. Earlier, I remember I used to write off situations, people and myself after one negative experience. I remember struggling with my identity at 16, and one of the key questions I wanted answered was whether I had courage or not. After a couple of times of experiencing myself as timid and afraid, I came to the sorry conclusion that I was a coward. Everything at that time appeared set in stone. An illness meant one was sickly. Losing temper on a couple of occasions meant one was an angry person. One extended that same rapid-fire judgement to others as well, and therefore every one including me was boxed in small airtight compartments that left no room for change, evolution and growth.When I awakened to the spiritual path, one of the major discoveries was that even though I was over 30, I discovered within me a great capacity for growth. I found that my personality was not a fixed phenomenon and therefore no one else’s was either. I also found that although I had changed hugely, people around me were either unwilling or unable to change their view of me. It suited them to see me as the old reactive, timid and shy person I had been.I smarted under the injustice of it all and determined that I at least would no longer box people into fixed positions but would always leave open the possibility of change and growth. People were who they were only provisionally. And if we could see them as capable of change there was every possibility of kindling that same realisation in them. The human psyche is extremely delicate and vulnerable and we have no idea how powerfully we can impact others simply by seeing them as the whole and perfect beings they are in actuality.One also begins to recognise the flowing and fluid nature of life. Everything shifts and changes so why operate from fixed positions? Another related understanding is that life is a process. Things, including us, take time to form and often go through several mutations before yielding the desired results. Parents need to keep this in mind when relating to their children especially during the turbulent teens. These children are forming and struggling to discover themselves and establish an independent identity. Their reactivity and aggression is a passing phase, not writ in stone. Keeping this in mind will enable them to extend the space needed for the children to work out their stuff and return to stasis.We as seekers have deep need of this knowledge as we go about the difficult task of self-transformation. We will stumble and fall ten thousand times as we struggle to become who we wish to. It is only the dauntless determination to rise on each of these occasions and keep going that will bring us the success we strive for.
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