Wednesday, March 26, 2008

False Dependencies

Someone gave me a booklet called "The Best of Bill". It's full of reflections written by Bill Wilson. In it was an essay titled "Love".

As I started reading it I realized it was more of an essay on how not to love people. It was showing me how I used people for the wrong reasons. It showed me how I have dependencies on other people. It was about our expectations and demands of other people. He wrote that if we would look at every disturbance we have, big or small, we would fine "some unhealthy dependency and it's consequent unhealthy demand."

What is an unhealthy dependency? Depending on people or circumstances to supply me with prestige, security, and the like. "Top approval, perfect security, perfect romance." For me, it looks like the people in my life and my circumstances are going to have to change or I will never be free from fear. It's the fault of someone or something else.

Bill starts off the essay talking about the development of real maturity and balance in our relationships with ourselves, our fellows, and with God. He even tucked in the word "humility" . Later he wrote "For my dependency meant demand -- a demand for the possession and control of the people and conditions surrounding me."

These days, I'm feeling a lot of anxiety around the perceptions I have of people wanting to control me. I want people to stop making "demands" of me. I feel pressure from my spouse, from friends, from the pastor. Every one sees potential in me. They want me to get involved in their program. Seeing me move in a different direction than where I am going now. Even as I write this, I get confused. If only these people were a bit different, more how I think they should be. If only they were to listen to me, my life would be easier. After reading this essay, I understand that I cannot blame any of these people for my unease. The fault clearly lies within. Just because I feel a lot of fear when confronted with having to make a choice, doesn't mean I have to get upset with the people who presented the choice. Acceptance and humility. These people care for me. We all have passion for the same thing. Wanting to help others.

My whole life, I have been overly dependent upon others. (Bill writes that we have been absolutely dependent upon others.) People have never been able to give me what I expected of them. Not one. I have spent a portion of my life unhappy with human kind.

How am I to love others. With no thought of getting anything in return. No expectations. Bill write that we receive love from our Higher Power when we give away that same love with no reservations. Bill's words:

"This seems to be the primary healing circuit: an outgoing love of God's creation and his people, by means of which we avail ourselves of his love for us. It is most clear that the real current can't flow until our paralysing dependencies are broken, and broken at depth. Only then can we possibly have a glimmer of what adult love really is."


Anonymous said...

I have that book too. Havent picked it up in a while. I keep reading that last sentance over and over,there is a lot in there for sure. God Bless and thanks for being there.

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