A MATTER OF LOOKING INTO THE EYES
Early on in my life, I ad a difficult time looking into people’s eyes. When I would look into people’s eyes when we were talking, I would be overcome with fear and turn away. This made it difficult for me to see facial expressions and learn what they meant. I thought I could get away with it, but over time I learned that wasn't working and that if I wanted to improve things I would have to force myself to look people in the eyes when we had conversations. Over time I have become at ease with it and it is no longer a problem, although I still sometimes get confused as too how long to hold a gaze and have to use some energy to do it, and when I am speaking in a very emotional personal manner it still sometimes impossible.
I've thought about other people in the same situation and what I can come up with to help them, and me.
Eckhart Tolle talks about the ‘duality of the mind’, that there is part of the mind that experiences reality, and another part that observes what the observing part of the mind is experiencing.
The first universal truth of Buddhism states: Nothing is lost in the universe:
“The first truth is that nothing is lost in the universe. Matter turns into energy, energy turns into matter. A dead leaf turns into soil. A seed sprouts and becomes a new plant. Old solar systems disintegrate and turn into cosmic rays. We are born of our parents, our children are born of us.
We are the same as plants, as trees, as other people, as the rain that falls. We consist of that which is around us, we are the same as everything. If we destroy something around us, we destroy ourselves. If we cheat another, we cheat ourselves. Understanding this truth, the Buddha and his disciples never killed any animal.”
The part of the mind that observes is like a light that shines within us. The source of that light is the same for everyone, and burns just a brightly in all of us. Stoic philosophy states: “All people are manifestations of the one universal spirit”. That light may make it’s way through us in different paths and ours may appear differently to the outside world, but it is the same. The path the light takes is not fixed and whatever is within us that keeps it from shining bright can be removed. Our light may take a different path, but it can shine as bright as any other. The observer is the same in all of us, it makes no difference how rich we are, how poor we are, whether we have autism, ADD, mania or are gregarious, it makes no difference to the observer, it is the same in all of us.
The Bhagavad Gita says:
“He who experiences the unity of life sees his own Self in all beings, and all beings in his own Self, and looks on everything with an impartial eye.”
When you look into someone’s eyes, you see the same light that is within us, you see the same source, you see yourself. Do not be afraid to look someone in the eyes.
The first entry of the Noble Eight-fold Path is the Right View: “The right way to think about life is to see the world through the eyes of the Buddha--with wisdom and compassion”
If you gaze at another with that wisdom and compassion, the fear will go away.
For further info on how the light within us reaches it’s way out in different paths for each of us I suggest this article: