Loyalty, Individuality and Betrayal?
The other day on Facebook I saw a post from someone that was a word game that when you pressed the button, it gave you a word that supposedly describes you. The word they got was Loyal and they were so very proud to draw this card. While I chose not to play the game, the thought of being loyal generated some thoughts and emotions surrounding my own personal journey in this “Little Game”, we call life. What are the attributes of being loyal? Synonyms to describe Loyalty are: Faithful, Trustworthy, Devoted, Reliable, Dependable and Dedicated to name just few. These seem to me to be traits that I would look for in prospective friends, loved ones, or the reflection I would like to see of myself if I happen to look in the mirror.
But, what is the significance of being loyal? Loyalty would seem to indicate that there is someone else in the equation that I am trying to be loyal too. There must be motive behind my loyalty. Am I trying to gain acceptance, garner love, or ascertain a sense of security from someone or a particular group I want to accept me? Being loyal seems like a great attribute. It is a trait that would provide the foundation for trust in a relationship or in an organization. But what happens when one chooses to move outside or beyond the relationship or group? Maybe the boundaries no longer make sense and have become an impediment to the individual.
We all go through life trying to fit in, trying to be accepted, trying to gain praise for our actions. We strive consciously or subconsciously for a sense of security from a particular relationship or group. That relationship or group may be our family, our playground buddies, our faith, or our culture to name a few. There is nothing wrong with this path; it is a fact of life. If you are like me, it made the road so much easier as long I was comfortable with the rules and obligations. Unfortunately, there always seems to be guidelines that we are expected to abide by to maintain our good standing within these relationships or alliances we choose to operate in.
I know for myself, it worked pretty well for me. I was what was known as a “Jock” in school. My group was those heavily invested in sports. From my sports, I derived a lot of confidence, assertiveness along with a heavy dose of arrogance to those outside the group in retrospect. I’m not sure looking back some 40-years later that I’m proud of all my actions that were driven more from a group acceptance perspective, rather than a personal integrity aspect, but so goes life.
There are many examples, but some of the easiest ones reside within our families, our religions, or our cultures. It is so easy to hide behind the traditions and authority of our groups even when it may not seem fair or right in order to maintain our loyalty rather than move away from the group and risk being alone without the support system that is the comfort zone of our existence.
I remember in high school, being popular as one of the “Jocks”, being stopped cold by the mother of a girl I was interested in. I didn’t happen to be in their group, which happened to be “Catholic”, so she wouldn’t allow her daughter to go out with me. I hadn’t experienced this before. As a “Jock”, I had never had any difficulty getting a date and here was someone that was off limits because I didn’t fit into their group. Another example, I had just been discharged after 6-years of military service and moved to the State of Utah. I was looking to rent an apartment and I ran into a landlord who assessed me as a fine upstanding young man who had served his country, but since I wasn’t Mormon, he said he couldn’t rent me the apartment.
In the above situations I felt a sense of helplessness and anger because there wasn’t much I could do. The group that held the power over my particular situation didn’t accept me. In reality, I learned lessons from the experiences, but I was just asking them to step outside their group and they weren’t prepared to do that. That would be a form of betrayal to their group.
We all reach points in time where we are forced to weigh the costs we are willing to incur to step away from a commitment/promise/vow/obligation that no longer makes any sense to us? How far would you go? We’ve all been taking baby steps in this direction since childhood. It’s called “Individuality”, and we experience it throughout our lives. From taking toys from your 6-year old friend in their sandbox, to the examples stated above, we’re faced with questions of exercising our Individuality everyday. How far will you go? This is usually driven by the significance of the consequences we would incur if we choose to step outside the boundaries we’ve accepted to live with until that moment.
My examples didn’t really carry a lot of adverse consequences, yes my self-esteem and pride were hurt and I received a paddling on my butt by mother for taking my friend’s toys, but nothing too extreme. But let’s talk Spiritual Development, or as I term it, “Awakening to How Life Really Works”. You’re an “Energy”, call it a “Spiritual” one if it makes you feel better, which is having an “Emotional” experience on a “Physical” plane to learn certain “Life Lessons” and to “Repay Karma”. Most importantly, “YOU” chose everything you are going to experience in this game and everyone in this game has played it with you several times before. You’re roles may be the same, reversed or mixed up; Fathers become children, best friends become adversaries.
In this “Little Game Called Life” there are some deep-seated soul memories at play. When you’re pushed to confront this deep dark emotional-energy that is trapped in your soul memory, lack of loyalty to the group or relationship as you flex your “Individuality” will be met with accusations of “Betrayal”. What are some synonyms for betrayal: Disloyalty, Unfaithfulness, Duplicity, Infidelity, and Treachery. Remember, when one get’s hurt badly, in their truth, it’s like the saying; “Hell hath no fury like a man or woman scorned”.
From my personal experience, you aren’t going get very far on your road to “Enlightenment” by adhering to the group. Each one of us is made of unique soul memories created from distinctive past-life experiences and they will only be truly conquered through our “Individuality”. What are some synonyms for Individuality: Independence, Uniqueness, Eccentric, and Originality.
So, when “Loyalty” and “Individuality” collide on a “Soul Level”, the term “Betrayal” can become very prevalent as ones’ path moves outside the group, or to another group, or decides to not reside in a group at all. I remember being in Singapore a few years back and Maitreya was taking questions from the audience. A twenty-year old young woman from India asked what she should do because she wanted to marry the young man who was accompanying her and not the man in India that her parents had arranged for her to marry. Maitreya told her that he couldn’t tell her what to do, but that in this incarnation she was playing an incarnation with the same parents who had completely controlled her every move in a past incarnation and that she had come into this lifetime to break free from this energy pattern. He had confirmed for her what she probably already knew, but now that she had the answer, her reply was, “But, if I don’t marry the man my parent’s have chosen for me, I will be considered “Dead” to them for the rest of my life”. Can you feel for her? I know I did, but once again the question. How far are you willing to go to step away from a commitment/promise/vow/obligation that no longer makes any sense to you as you seek “Spiritual Development”, “Enlightenment” or whatever term you care to describe your “Journey in Life”?
For me, if you’ve read my previous newsletters, the costs on a “Non-Metaphysical Level” have been steep. Just like the young Indian girl, we must remember, those closest and nearest to us are the ones that provide the hardest lessons, but the most learning if we can get past our relationship or the group loyalties that we will ultimately have to battle, because in their truth our actions will “Betray Them”.
Our Self will use this to generate a lot of guilt within us that offers us another learning experience called “Detachment”. Don’t you love this “Spiritual Development”, what course can you take that the learning never ends and tuition is free until the last breath you take!
Have a great month!