‘You are not that important.’
‘Life is bigger than one life.’
‘Do not get lost in yourself, you are not that interesting.’
‘Your purpose should transcend service of self.’
All of those are mantras I live by and repeat to myself often. Why? Well I have observed a cultural phenomena that is rampant today, especially in the West, of complete unashamed social and self destructive SELF OBSESSION!
Just look what it led to in Disney’s Snow White. Had the magic mirror in Snow White had any sense the dialogue would have been as follows;
”Mirror Mirror on the Wall, Who’s the Fairest of them All?
”Listen up Queen…Witch…Lady! This obsession you have with your beauty is extremely unattractive and unhealthy. You realise it is driving you to contemplating the murder of a little girl right? She’s like 12…and you want to rip out her heart, seriously, I think you should see a Therapist or something, I know someone who is really good…I say this out of friendly concern…why have you picked up a hammer?!”
Instead He/It tells her Snow White is prettier…and well you know the rest. Point is, he fed the fire of her self obsession.
Self Obsession is nourishment for the Ego. The Ego clouds judgement, dampens empathy, diminishes humanitarian concern and bolsters self righteousness. It hurts you without you realising it and is toxic for those around you. So you end up in the company of those who share your affliction, and they cannot help you, for they are as self absorbed as you are.
Eventually you seek the company of those who are selfless and giving. You leech all their goodness and patience and love, to heal yourself of your self inflicted miseries. Taking and never giving back. Without a thought for how much you drain them. No thought of ever giving back. Seeking their company only when your Ego needs comfort. Leeching for long enough to feel good again, then slithering off into the dark you call life. A cruel circle, that you are unaware of, but the Self-Less suffer.
Being someone who is the leeched and not the leech, I have found that I am thoroughly exhausted. There is only so much unreciprocated giving you can do before the ugly head of bitterness slinks into your heart. I don’t give to receive, but the etiquette of life mandates it. It’s called fairness.
SO I decided to reflect the behaviour of these types of folk back onto them and found it really hurts them terribly. Yet if you attempt to explain that you are mirroring their own behaviour, they look at you dumbfounded, and it became clear to me that their self obsession has left them so blinded, they don’t they see themselves in my behaviour mirror.
It was slightly alarming.
People are more self involved than ever before, yet not self aware.
Introspection and Self Awareness are the first steps for change that leads to the improvement of self.
Self Obsession is an indulgence which undoes your efforts towards growth.
I do continue to be a player in the ‘Leech Game’, but to a lesser extent. I try to keep a limit on how much I give, when it detracts from the energy I use to improve myself, that is when I draw the line. Any good I do is to serve the Greater Judge, who I hope will see my intention as pure. Evaluate your place in ‘The Leech Game’ and decide if you are working towards Self Improvement or Self Destruction.
Zishaan ‘ZuZu’ Shafi