Heart to Heart: The Power of Relationships
Happy New Year, dear readers and fellow Martial Artists! Welcome to the year 2011!
It feels like such a long time since we connected. How are you all doing?
I am reaching out to you and letting you know I have been thinking of you and praying for you as this New Year has begun. With all of the stories of the mass animal deaths, the news of the shootings and all kinds of disasters, we should always remember to celebrate every living breath as if it were our last. The power is in us to make all of our dreams come true.
One common complaint I hear frequently from students of all ages and all family backgrounds is their difficulty with relationships – spouses, friends, co-workers, relatives, in-laws, neighbors, and everyone else. How can we get along better with others? Why is there so much difficulty in getting along with others? Why isn’t there an easy way to solve relationship issues? Often, unresolved relationship problems go on and on for years and sometimes never get worked out.
Although we sometimes talk about relationship problems as though they are a modern issue, let’s not forget that relationships have been around since the beginning of humanity. We don’t live alone in this world, we have never existed alone, and relationships are necessarily a part of every aspect of life. Especially for us Martial Artists.
Nevertheless, we experience ourselves mainly through our sense of being an individual. But ironically, one of the things that strongly define our unique individuality is the fact that we exist in relationship to others. By that I mean, one of the main reasons we strong feel our “self” is because we know “others.” These opposites help define each other!
Today, let’s look at how our energy, our being, impacts relationships. It seems that relationships are composed of two entirely separate forces: the energy of our “self” and the energy of the “other,” whoever it may be. In general, we regard these two forces as completely independent actors.
While it is true that every person is responsible for their own behavior, it’s also true that the energy of “self” and “other” operates in a unity. When you say, I am not responsible for that person’s actions…or I am not responsible for what you did or didn’t do to me …that’s true, but it’s not the whole picture. This is a narrow view which does not take into account the very important fact right here: Your “self” and “other” are strongly connected in a unified energy exchange even though each does indeed have responsibility for their own actions.
You can refuse to embrace this larger picture, of course, and stick rigidly to the idea that you “have nothing to do” with the other person’s actions or presence in your life. You are greatly disadvantaged when it comes to successfully eliminating conflict, hostility, blame, and vengeance, and other ills that plague your relationships. Why?
In order to resolve relationship difficulties, we have to understand two things: first, how we helped create or attract the energy that the “other” is manifesting; and second, how we can correctly use our own energy to create or attract a better kind of “other.”
I mentioned that we have never existed alone. Don’t forget, the moment you are conceived, you are in a relationship. You wouldn’t have arrived here at all if it hadn’t been for the relationship with your mother in her womb. Then, after you are born, you are in a relationship with family members. From there, your relationships continue to expand as you find yourself in relationships with larger and larger communities.
But you also have a relationship with the life force that created the universe! You had this relationship before the one with your mother, before you were born, and you still have it now. If, as you are growing, you are also growing spiritually, you will ultimately approach your Silent Master Consciousness and regain a wide awake awareness of your connection – to your relationship with the entire universe. This is your first original relationship from which all others follow, one that will never end.
When you become aware of your silent Master power within you, you feel at one with the entire universe, aware that you are connected to all life, all light – with a love that embraces everyone and everything in the universe. Yes, this is a very wide consciousness, a very wide relationship, much wider than your narrow, strictly materialistic personality concerns. But your Silent Master Consciousness exists for you to discover! My goal in giving my Jung Suwon training is to help and encourage my students to reach for this inner power, peace, freedom and joy.
Everything in the universe is available to you to the extent you become aware of it. You cannot manifest what you are not aware of in some way.
Remember, when you wish to create or manifest any aspect of your life, you do not have to invent anything. All you have to do is open your awareness, and your infinite capabilities and richness will become more and more visible.
Jung Suwon doesn’t teach you something new. It teaches what you already have – what you can open to as you become more aware.
You have, then a relationship with the universe that is infinitely open, full of unlimited, as yet undiscovered potential.
But, now since we are on earth at this point in time, let’s go back to your first earth relationships which go on to affect every other one you have for the rest of your life. It’s important to be as fully aware as possible of the concepts you formed at this time. Would you really like to improve the quality of your relationships right now? There is a way to do it, and it begins by looking very carefully at your first relationships.
Your very first impressions about who you are, what you are like, and what you can do with your abilities come from your first relationships. I know of very few people who were born into ideal family circumstances. Some people I know were born into situations where many negative family – taught beliefs or cultural beliefs – affected them in a way that made it difficult for them to find their true self. I was born into a family and a culture where there was much to overcome in order to fulfill my true desires.
Why do we look at our upbringing to analyze the quality of our relationships? You must identify if there were negative or alien energy patterns you adopted from your first relationships, because these patters will tend to manifest in all other relationships. Or, put it this way: you must identify and express your true self to attract harmonious relationships.
Why do the initial patterns we adopt go on manifesting over and over? Because the patterns have energy and this energy follows the rule of “like attracts like.”
So the first step in cleaning up your relationships is to take a good look at the traits you may have adopted in your early relationships. The next step is to look at how these traits or patterns are being repeated right now in present relationships. Identifying these traits or patterns gives you something to work with. Once you know what you have to overcome, you are in a position to do it. Since I don’t know your specific upbringing, I will share mine with you. Mine is certainly filled with the ills and pitfalls that some people experience one way or another. First I’ll give you an idea of what enabled me to overcome my obstacles; then we’ll look at the other side, at what feeds obstacles and causes them to manifest in relationships over and over, until you change your energy.
The life I have now was certainly not inherited! In order to create the life I truly desired, it was necessary to overcome a family and culture that denied me what I wanted out of life. If you have similar struggles, hopefully my victory over my environment will encourage you to believe in your true self and your ability to bring out the life you desire.
When I was born in Korea, nobody rolled out the welcome mat! I was born female, my first obstacle. In the oriental culture at that time, women were cast in a role which nobody questioned. Women were trained to cook and sew and were not allowed to have expectations beyond being a good wife and mother.
Just to be a female was a stigma. My father openly showed me his resentment that I was born a daughter instead of a son and favored my brother in every way. As a result, I was the one who was beaten in his alcoholic rages. My mother, also very subservient, was not in a position to stop him from this child abuse. In fact, she resented me as well. From her point of view, I was the cause of trouble in the family. If I hadn’t been born a daughter, life with her husband would have been much easier. With my family being so aggressively critical of me, naturally I was tempted to believe I was really wretched, deserving of hate, and unlikable. But I couldn’t’ stop being myself. I had this sinner determination that no matter how they treated me, I wouldn’t give in. I wouldn’t stop listening to my inner desires, and I actually began to pursue them. My refusal to accept and pursue the traditional oriental women’s role brought the displeasure of peers and neighbors, of course, so that I really had nobody who believed in me.
Nobody, that is, except me – and the person who became my Master. At eight years of age, just when I should have been performing like a traditional oriental female, I was powerfully drawn to the martial art of TKD. I knew this was the only life I wanted, and my family and neighbors, everyone I encountered, applied enormous psychological and emotional pressure, beating me and locking me in my room to keep me from practicing.
But I found a Ki Master who believed in me and was willing to teach me. He alone encouraged me to pursue the training, and to prevail against an entire culture. It would have been nice to have pats on the back from family and friends and friendly, supportive people while working toward my goals. It’s nice for anyone. But the power of your real self – your Silent Master – is strong enough to love you and support you. Your silent Master will bring to you, as it did to me, exactly what you need to fulfill yourself, whether it’s one person, an army or nobody. All you have to do is be yourself! Your true self. And your true self, as your awareness opens wider and wider, will show you – and bring you – everything you need.
Naturally this requires a decision on your part. I wasn’t always a Grandmaster. I was a frightened little girl, and I had plenty of opportunities to make all kinds of excuses for not rising above my environment. But I made the personal decision not to accept the limitations of my surroundings, and you can do the same!
As you look back to your past and may discover areas where you did indeed accept negative or omitting beliefs about yourself, you will undoubtedly need to forgive, release anger, fear or guilt; and let go. Forgiveness does not mean you absolve anyone from wrongdoing. The wrong that was done is still wrong and will always be wrong. Rather, forgiveness helps you release the pattern so that it will not repeat in your life.
Some patterns are repeated even if we don’t want them to be. For instance, people who were abused as children often become child abusers themselves. Since pain is almost always inevitable in life. We must learn from the things that hurt us. My childhood circumstance didn’t overwhelm me because I took charge of my life and refused to be a victim.
It was wrong for my father to treat me a valueless, as bad and unworthy simply because I was a female. It was wrong for him to get drunk and beat me again and again. It was wrong to criticize my unjustly, humiliate me, and thwart my natural love and desires.
But what if I had made the decision to hate him instead of forgive him and go on with my pursuits? Hate has the effect of “solidifying” that which is hated, making it more real and enduring. Remember, all energy is the same energy, but colored differently by different beliefs. This means that hate is the same energy as love, but negatively colored, of course. Hate will energize and strengthen any situation just as love will, but it will energize and strengthen it negatively.
Hating my father, then, would have mad his abusiveness more vivid, more enduring, more vibrant, in effect, and therefore more likely to manifest physically in my life not only from him but from others I would attract. My decision and determination to release myself from this oppressive environment was made possible by not hating.
Sometimes persons who come from a situation of child abuse – and who continue to hate the abusers without doing anything to dissolve the pattern 0 find themselves later in a spousal abuse situation. What’s interesting about this is that even if the abused person ends the marriage as a solution, he or she ends up in another one just like it! This happens frequently, and we really see the power of energetic patterns at work here. Since the energetic pattern isn’t being removed from the person’s consciousness, merely leaving the marriage does not end the problem, and it repeats automatically.
As I mentioned before, this pattern can also produce a parent who abuses their own children. I even heard one of my students say desperately, “I don’t want to treat my children the way I as treated, but I am doing it anyway!” Again, we see that pattern isn’t removed merely by knowing it’s there, or by wishing and wanting it to go away.
It must be removed! Dissolved! And this is possible – with real forgiveness – if you have correctly identified the pattern and where you got it. If you go through therapy with a psychologist to work on this problem, ultimately the therapy must take you to this same place. You must get hold of that hurt place in yourself, feel the feelings, and then consciously forgive in order to release it. And mean it! Then you can replace the old behavior with new patterns based on desirable energy.
Do it now! Don’t let anything stop you from exercising the freedom of forgiveness!
My mission is to reach out to people who are seeking help and to share with them all that I have learned throughout my life.
I am looking forward to 2011 to be filled with people’s hearts and happy minds.
You are in my thoughts and prayers and I wish you the most successful New Year, full of health and happiness.
From my heart to your heart,
Chairman Tae Yun Kim, PhD
Great Grandmaster, Jung SuWon Martial Art Academy
HE CAN DO, SHE CAN DO, WHY NOT ME!
MAR. 31. 2011. TaeKwonDoTimes.