A bold statement you may think but allow me to elaborate. Last year I signed up for a basic four week computer course with Simon Asquith. Up until that point my relationship with computers had been, what can only be described as ‘rather strained’. My relationship was ok as long as I stuck to basic emailing and didn’t try to do anything new, but as soon as I tried to do anything new, I invariably ended up spending what felt like an inordinate length of time repeating the same dead end moves over and over again, getting increasingly more frustrated, until I eventually had some sort of minor breakdown.
And as far as my relationship with social media went, well we were not even on speaking terms, I had blanked her from the very beginning.
On gathering online in week one, it was of no surprise at all to find out that the other 3 woman on the course were of a similar age to me and a brief chat was enough to reveal that we all shared similar experiences and feelings about our relationship with computers and social media; that is, apart from one of the other women who had been working with Simon previously and whose relationship with computers was enviably healthier.
So after our initial sharing I was keen to get on and learn, I sat poised, ready to put pen to paper, eager to write down some steps that would enable me to ‘friend someone’ on Facebook or tweet a funny incident on Twitter. I could feel the frustration in my body rise when Simon suggested that we delve a little deeper into our relationship with computers. I didn’t have time for that, or so I felt. So it was with some reluctance that I sat and listened to what the others had to say.
What I found astonishing is the speed with which things transpired for everyone in the group. With the gentle and masterful guidance of Simon, we were each able to start to unpick the stitches – that up until that point, had held a rather taut canopy over our view of our relationship with computers and indeed technology in general. What I began to clearly see, is that I was actually invested in my relationship with computers and social media being difficult. You see, when I got honest with myself, I discovered that I like to see myself as someone who doesn’t ‘run with the herd’ and so as the herd were all running with social media, I was intent on running the other way!
In an instant I was able to recall that I had been the last person that I knew to get a mobile phone and then having got a phone, (reluctantly and purely out of necessity) I was the last person to get a smart phone. Specific instances seemed to be automatically coming up from my body, as if some invisible secretary had been sent to find files that would serve as evidence for my newly awakened suspicions. For example, I recalled being asked by a security guard for my mobile phone number and with a silent drum roll, I shared that I didn’t have a phone. I then waited rather expectantly for some sort of recognition. The level of surprise in his voice about the fact that I didn’t have a phone, was hardly detectable – but like a junky who has just found a spec of heroin, I snuffled it up none the less.
Similarly I recalled getting lost on the way to see my son play basketball. I pulled over and asked someone for directions, they used their phone to look up where the courts were and enquired as to how come I didn’t have that facility on my phone. Ah wonderful, another opportunity to show how special I was. What seemed to escape me completely was that in order for me to seemingly stand out from the crowd, for what amounted to a matter of seconds, I was actually choosing to make life pretty damn hard for myself!
What I have come to understand from attending presentations by Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine is that the part of me that I can feel that is on the constant lookout for any skerrick of recognition is called the spirit, and it is forever looking to know itself through identification. The more that I am able to let go of identification, the more I can feel that I am connecting to my soul, which is the inner-most part of all of us. When I glimpse my soul, I can feel how voluminous it is and how it needs nothing to confirm itself, it is, in itself a living knowingness.
As a result of beginning to understand the difference between spirit and soul, I can feel in my body that not only does the spirit have an insatiable appetite, but also that it will take anything at all that sets it apart from others. I myself have paraded the most awful details about myself to others, purely for the nod of acknowledgement that I knew my appalling behaviour would get. A raised eyebrow, a frown, a shake of the head, a tut-tut, a look of disgust and even rejection are all forms of recognition that I was seeking identification by, regardless of how that recognition came.
As if I hadn’t accumulated enough evidence already, another more recent scenario resurfaced from my body. I had gone to lunch with work colleagues and the conversation had turned to Facebook. I was the only person on the table who wasn’t on Facebook and I could feel myself absolutely relishing the attention that I was getting. I was confirmed, again just for the length of time that the spotlight was on me and my spirit was loving the time and attention!
What I was getting to see more and more clearly was that it was actually ‘me’ that had set up my whole dire relationship with technology and social media. My relationship with technology and social media was simply a reflection of a part of me that wanted to stand out from the crowd.
What I have shared so far, I shared effortlessly with the computer course group but what I am about to share, had to be manually wrenched from my own throat. For most of my life I have felt like I was in competition with others, l felt that life was a bit like a horse race and I was constantly vying for position. As part of the imagined race, I had at times done things to hinder others’ attempts to get, what I perceived to be, ‘ahead of me’. What I could feel skulking deep within my body, was that part of my reluctance to enter into the world of social media was because I knew that the things I would share, would enable others to evolve – and part of me didn’t want others to evolve more than me. There, I said it.
As these revelations came out of my body, I could feel invisible blocks being lifted, I knew that my relationship with technology and social media had already changed. However it was not just my relationship with technology and social media that had shifted, because the revelation that Simon had supported me to come to was that our relationship with any-thing is merely a reflection of an aspect of our relationship with ourselves. Once we go into thinking that it is the object or indeed the other person that is to blame then we have lost sight of the fact that it is ‘us’ that has set it in motion.
I cannot finish this article without thanking Simon Asquith for the tender care with which he held and guided the group and for the opportunity to see and feel the true beauty and vulnerability that is naturally held within all men. When the group commented on the extraordinary wisdom that Simon was bringing through, he graciously side stepped the compliments but the truth is, it is his dedication to the way that he lives that allows such love and wisdom to flow through him.
By Alexis Stewart, a woman who is coming to feel her true worth, partner of an increasingly beautiful man, mum to a stunning boy, dedicated student of The Way of The Livingness, Care worker, Yoga Teacher