Holistic Networker [Home]

Home : Essays on Being Human : Fall 1996

Love is an expression of the willingness to create space in which something is allowed to change.

- Harry Palmer






Have you ever wished that someone else could be different? Do you sometimes know what’s best for them and that everything would be better if only that person would change? Well, it happens to all of us. We get an idea of how the world should be and we impose this viewpoint on anyone who will listen. (This is especially apparent in election years.)

When we interact with others, we engage in a co-creative process: we share viewpoints, desires, and goals. Friendships arise out of a shared set of viewpoints: we feel comfortable with people who think the same way that we do. Our agreement brings a shared sense of comfort (we think to ourselves--this person validates me”). Yet, viewpoints can be the basis for bitter animosity when people adopt opposing viewpoints.

How do we enjoy the benefits of having others in the world when many of them don’t share our beliefs? It’s simply a matter of remembering that we ourselves are changing every moment--that our own beliefs can change in a second and so can another’s. Maybe you’ve changed political parties in your lifetime, or changed your taste in music, or changed your allegiance to a sport’s team. I can remember listening to music that my parents hated. I couldn’t imagine that they didn’t appreciate it. Now, I find myself stuck in a musical time warp; my favorite music has shifted to the “oldies” radio station.

Physicists tell us that the world is an absurd and irrational place. In fact, they tell us that the world doesn’t exist at all. Physicists have discovered that reality is dependent upon the existence of an observer. No observer, no reality--just a potential. We can no longer speak of one world, but of an infinite number of worlds, each manifesting from the viewpoint of an individual. What does this mean for you and me? We can only change our experience of the world. Are you having a good day? It really is YOUR day. You can invite another to share your viewpoint; “Hey, great day, isn’t it?”, but in the end, each of us decides the kind of day we’d like to have.

In allowing others to hold their own beliefs and opinions, we give ourselves the freedom to feel or believe anyway that we wish. The opinions of others matter not at all. For you to be happy requires only your own decision. You don’t need anyone’s approval to be happy, sad, decisive, creative, or simply to BE. The viewpoints of another can never affect you.

When we remember that another person is not the sum of their beliefs and viewpoints, but like ourselves, is a divine Source of viewpoints, we can appreciate the variety that the world holds. In that appreciation, we recover the feeling of the essence of life--that feeling of being in the present moment when everything can change in the blink of an eye, or the flap of a butterfly’s wing.

Tony Cecala,
Publisher, The Holistic Networker

©1996, Tony Cecala