Our past dictates how we conduct ourselves in all relationships and how we view the world today. Beliefs are programmed from babyhood and continue until age 12. Our views on the world are firmly molded by our early teens.
We adapt these programmed beliefs from our parental figures, environment, siblings, etc. Our brains are like sponges when we are young. They are designed to copy that which we observe in our environment. This is a great learning tool for a child. However, if your environment is riddled with conflict and trauma then that is how your brain will be trained to view the world, through a trauma-filled lens. Likewise if you were raised in an environment where there was only happiness then you will have an unrealistic view of the world and the slightest pain will bring suffering.
Belief means you are either for or against something. For brings out the pleaser in you while against is the rebel. Adapting either one of these personas brings pain because if you are busy being a pleaser or a rebel then there is no energy left to question “who am I?”
Who you are is pure joy and sacredness. When we get caught in preprogrammed beliefs, we act from a place of self-motive in order to be comfortable. This often results in unhealthy relationships. Our need to be comfortable arises from our need to feel what was familiar to us in childhood. Essentially what we were programmed to believe.
Therefore, if an environment is filled with trauma, then a trauma filled relationship is what you will subconsciously be comfortable with. Many are subconsciously comfortable with their trauma although they outwardly seek help. Some even jump from retreat to retreat and Guru to Guru, finding only mediocre happiness at best.
Even though it causes suffering we also subconsciously seek out situations that can fulfill the unfulfilled childhood needs. The underlying benefit being familiarity. If we grew up in avoidance of conflict then we are more apt to always want to make things better when the relationship goes sour.
No matter which side you choose you will be in a constant push pull between your conscious thoughts and your subconscious programming. Since our actions come from our subconscious mind then it is essential to connect the conscious mind with the subconscious mind.
An example: Someone says good morning to you but never lifts their eyes from their work. They are aware of saying good morning but unaware that they did not even physically acknowledge you. Their actions didn’t match their words.
Observe in this example that the person consciously said good morning, and subconsciously kept their head down. The subconscious behaviour is what came from their childhood. Unless the behaviour is investigated and “where did I learn this from?” is answered they will continue to behave in this dismissive manner.
This example reflects how humans operate more often than not.
You will never know how your past affects your life today unless you take a deep explorative journey within yourself. It is a journey that requires 200% self-honesty.
Our actions and words must flow together in harmony. For this to happen we must explore through silence and introspective meditation all the resistance and walls we have internally constructed. Our resistance to release our past is our resistance to let go of our programmed behaviour and habits.
Yoga, pranayama and meditation are highly effective means for clearing past mental impressions or Samskara as it is known in Sanskrit.
Our perceptions of life come from such a young age that often we need to revisit unresolved past memories if only to separate what happened then with what is happening now. When we resist embracing our past we remain in denial of the freedom that is within our present.
Knowing if your past affects you today is very easy. Our natural state is one of pure innocence, joy and trust. We are beings of an immortal nature. We honour those like and unlike us. We see the world with fresh eyes each day we arise. We accept the ageing body while still nurturing the playful child within. Our relationships are uplifting and nurturing. If you are not feeling this then your past has affected you. If you say, “Everybody feels the same” then be sure to know their past has affected them also.