Self Respect (Swamaan)

Respecting the self requires obviously that we first have a clear understanding of the self which includes not just a definition but also the qualities, strengths and weaknesses. Once we understand the self, then respecting the self comes from thinking, speaking and performing actions that strengthen the self.

So who am I? I am a soul, a shining point of light that governs the actions of the body. The original qualities of the soul are peace, love and bliss. The soul is also aware of the fact that it is unique with a unique role to play and that it cannot be replaced. It also is devoid of fear because it knows that it is eternal.

So then what kinds of thoughts would the soul need to strengthen its qualities of peace, love and bliss? Elevated thoughts that are beyond the limitedness of the self but rather in the unlimitedness of world benefit. All of a sudden I am not the center of the universe but my thoughts  are about an infinitely bigger cause – betterment of my friends, my neighbors, my brothers and sisters. The whole world is my family!

Each thought then creates a feeling –  a feeling of doing good, of kindness, of love for the world. All of a sudden, we want to see the good in others because we need a reason to like the other person before we feel like helping them. Sometimes helping others could mean something as subtle as forgiving them for something hurtful, displaying tolerance and being accommodating or perhaps simply being there at a time of need.

A feeling then creates an action and we start to think of things to do to help others, the world. The actions are driven by the singular goal to heal the self and the world. Actions then create an attitude and shapes the personality. And there is no better way to respect the self than by respecting others. And God, the ocean of all virtues, powers and treasures, the most beautiful and perfect soul whom we all aspire to be like respects those who respect themselves.

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