"To love oneself is to be responsible for oneself."
Responsibility is the idea of the obligations one has to fulfil when one is the cause of something that has happened, when one is in a particular situation, or when one is involved in a particular role.
When one's responsibilities are written out in plain sight, for instance, a business contract, then they can be clearly seen and understood. This usually happens in legal settings, such as when one is doing business with the other. There, responsibilities would often be laid out in writing, i.e. if I give you A, then you are responsible to give me B.
This article will explore the responsibilities that are usually found in the unwritten form. These would be the ideas that one would encounter in every moment of their daily life, the ideas learnt from what the majority thinks is right, i.e. from what is expected of us from the consensus of society.
For instance, these can be the unspoken ideas about how a man should behave in front of a woman, how an employee should behave at work, how one should treat the other person in intimate relationships, and so forth.
And these ideas of responsibility can vary from mind to mind, place to place, time to time.
For example, in the past, married couples can be expected to love each other forever. But these days, it can be common for one to have divorced several times..
For example, in some cultures, the wife can be expected to be responsible for taking domestic matters whilst the husband works outside.
Or another example, in some countries, it can be normal for parents to let their extended family take care of their children, but in other places, the parents would be expected to take responsibility for them.
In this article, we will explore these kinds of unspoken responsibilities to understand why they are there, if they are even needed, and how creating attachment to them can affect one's happiness.
Responsibility In Depth
We are all born into this world inheriting the power of free will, granting us the freedom to make our own choices. As everyone is of unique minds, it's only natural for everyone to behave and think differently.
But as one looks at the world from this perspective, the existence of responsibilities can be a bit strange because it can effectively limit one's ability to simply be themselves.
And furthermore, because these ideas are not written out in plain sight and are changing all the time, confusions about one's responsibilities can arise in one's everyday life:
So, why do the ideas of responsibilities even exist?
Responsibilities exist because of our inherent desires to love each other. From this desire, comes the ideas of what is right and wrong, ideas on how people should treat each other, ideas on how people should clean up their mess if they caused it—thus emerge the ideas about responsibilities.
Whose idea is right?
Whose culture is right?
Whose teaching is right?
To clear the confusion, one can simply realize that at the end of the day, the ideas of responsibilities are simply made up, created from individual minds.
So, there's really no need to become attached to the ideas of whose idea is right or better. Some people may think that it's a guy's responsibility to open doors for girls but that doesn't necessarily mean it has to be done. Some may think that it's the girl's responsibility to be pretty all the time but that doesn't necessarily mean it has to be done.
However, when one becomes attached to these unspoken ideas of responsibilities, one can end up believing that these responsibilities must be fulfilled. As a result, the suffering states of the mind can arise, causing unhappiness and the desire to control others so that they can fulfil their responsibilities.
That is why if one wishes to be happy, one needs to assess whether it's worth keeping their attachment towards their ideas of right and wrong.
Path Of Creator
Responsibility In Relation To The Path Of Creator
As responsibilities are created from the desire to love, great lessons about love can be learnt from learning to see from other people's perspectives, not in the sense to see that their ideas of responsibilities are absolutely correct, but rather, to see how Love can be seen from another angle. Doing so will help one to see love in a different life, helping them to refine their knowing of what love is instead of blindingly follow what the majority thinks is correct, or become stuck in one's own narrow perspective.
The journey thus is about knowing more about love than what one already knows. The deeper journey is to develop Self-Knowing, to develop our unique perspective of the world, to develop and refine our own ideas of the responsibilities we should have in different situations in life. Developing our own unique perspective will help others to see love in a different light as well.
The destination is to reach a state of mind where one can love not out of responsibilities or obligations, but rather simply out of the heart. Because when one loves out of the need to fulfil one's responsibility, that love can still be conditional.
It's only when one can naturally love unconditionally that one can experience true happiness. That is why it's important to refine the knowing of what love is so that one can simply fulfil their responsibilities not because it's a expected, but rather, because one is simply being their true themselves.
How to reach the state of unconditional love?
To reach the state where one can love all there is out of the heart rather than out of obligation will require one to transform their suffering states of the mind, especially their fears of not meeting social expectations, fears of rejection, fears of being an honest Self.
Thus, instead of focusing all your energy in figuring out how to love others, simply focus the work on yourself. As long as one works on their suffering states of mind, all problems in life will naturally resolve itself.
Realize that although the ideas of responsibilities are always ideas made up by the subjective minds of men and women. for instance, ideas of what one should be responsible for and who one should be responsible for, there will always be one unchanging truth about responsibilities when viewed from the Universe—that is you will always be responsible for yourself, for your health, happiness, for your life. Realize that everything you do in life will always have a cause-effect to your body and mind. Eat bad, and you will experience bad health. When you become attached to negative beliefs, unhappiness will come!
Thus, the learning of responsibilities, of love, will not only be just about others but mostly concerning the way that you love yourself. Realize that one can only love others as much as one can love themselves.
Develop Experienced Knowledge
“Am I loving out of what is expected of me?”
“Am I loving out of what I believe is right?”
If it's the former, ask yourself,
"What is stopping me from being myself?"
The Creator's Meditation / VipassanaLink here
Instead of dwelling in the thoughts of what “Love” is, simply observe all things as is as you do in your meditation sessions.
As the mind recedes to a sense of Stillness, the Knowing of what Love and Responsibility will naturally come through. This is because when we are in constant thought of what our responsibilities are, those thoughts will always remain in the realm of the thinking mind that is constantly analyzing what is right and wrong.
Once those thoughts are released, one will be able to connect witht heir heart to realize what they really believe.
Know and Transform The Self!
Often we can only be aware of whether or not to take on a responsibility until we become aware of how much stress it can cause within.
Try the 22 Days Creators Meditation Course to develop Self-Knowing of who you really are, of your deepest fears and desires so that you can know what kind of life you want to create to reflect the true you within.