"To love unconditionally is to love without expectations"
Expectations here is defined here as a belief that something “should” be in a certain way.
I.e. We can have expectations towards how our parents “should” love us i.e. by expecting them to give us what we want.
I.e. we can have Expectations towards ourselves on how we should live our life i.e. to live a moral and honest life or to live adventurously and so forth.
I.e. we can have Expectations towards how other Selfs should behave, i.e. how our boyfriend or girlfriend should behave towards us.
Expectation In Depth
Why do we have expectations towards ourselves and others?
This is a question that we rarely ask ourselves. Most often than not one would simply react in anger or frustration when things do not behave in the way that we “expect” them to.
And as one dive into the consciousness to understand the cause as to why expectations exist, one will find that the roots of it will have to do with the Ideas that one carries about what is “Right” and what is “Wrong.” See Catalyst – Right and Wrong.
And we could have taken on these Ideas from interacting with our immediate family i.e. our parents, close friends, from the culture that we live in, from our teachers, from our religion, from schools and so forth.
Importance Of Addressing Issues To Do With Expectations
Without questioning the Cause as to why we can carry certain expectations towards ourselves and others it would be difficult to develop any further Knowing of The Self at a deeper level. This is because when we do not address the issue of expectations, we can easily become attached to the Ideas of "What I should Be and Who Others Should Be" and this will stop The Self from simply accepting "Who I Am, and Who Others Are"
Realize also that when we live out of expectations of how we should be we can greatly block ourselves from expressing ourselves with honesty and clarity. I.e. instead of saying to our bosses that we do not want to work over-time we may just swallow our opinions and be how a “perfect employee should be” or when our friends ask us to do something we can end up saying Yes when we want to say No because that is how a “True Friend Should Be.”
When we “act” out of “expectations” we are in fact putting on a mask and hiding our true selves, and with time the more we do this the more masks we will wear: a masks for relationships, masks for jobs, masks for events, masks for different roles in life. The Masks we wear in life can be said to be our Personality - See Catalyst - Personality / Ego.
In life it can be easy to believe that we are the personality - the Surface Self and forget all about the person behind the personality.
When this happens then we have truly lost ourselves.
And likewise, when we live out of expectations of how others should be, we can greatly block the Knowing and Acceptance of who that person really are.
Path Of Creator
Expectation In Relation To The Path Of Creator
The journey begins with the understanding of what Expectations really is and how it can affect the mind at the deeper level. As a side note, the mind is not affected negatively as long as the expectations are not driven by suffering / attachment.
At The Idea Level
The suffering states of the mind are experienced when our Expectations are built upon Negative Ideas, i.e. “he/she/it should....”
“He should not have ignored me” “He should have paid for the meal” “She should have asked me about what I did in the weekends” “My mum should have paid more attention to what I said” And so forth
Thus the theme of Expectations can be said to recede to the theme of Right and Wrong.
Why one could not simply allow the world and others to be as they are would be the question that one will eventually find answers to in their journey to release themselves from the suffering states behind their Expectations.
Why is there a need to control how a situation should be? Why is there a need to control how others should behave? Why can we simply not be happy as is?
It is important to address the issues to do with Expectations especially if one wishes to develop healthy relationships with oneself and Other Selves. Because when we carry high expectations of others then we can start to feel that the relationship is unbalanced and unfair, i.e. “I am giving too much and he/she is giving too little.”
It is also important to address Expectations especially if one wishes to develop a healthy relationship with oneself. Because when we have high expectations towards how “I” should be and how “I” should behave, then one would never be truly content with themselves because it is impossible to be “perfect” all the time.
When we carry high expectations upon ourselves, we can also end up “scoring” ourselves on how well we perform everyday. This is Self-Judgement and can create a great deal of Suffering. See Catalyst - Judgement
The Spiritual Lessons that one will ultimately go through to release themselves out of the issues of Expectations will involve the development of Self-Acceptance.
I.e. to develop Forgiveness towards oneself and others when one fails to meet one’s expectations.
I.e. to develop Acceptance towards the World and The Self as is – i.e. to accept that everything is already perfect as is at the Reaction Level of the mind.
Thus the destination is towards accepting all there is even if all fails to meet our expectations.
Develop Experienced Knowledge
Whenever someone fails to meet your expectations and you experience the suffering states of anger/frustration/sadness, simply ask yourself,
“What is it that I cannot accept about them?”
Then to develop deeper Knowing, realize that what you cannot accept about the Other Self is simply a reflection of what you cannot accept about yourself. And you can ask yourself the question,
“Why can I not accept that part of myself which I cannot accept in the other person?”
The Creator's Meditation / VipassanaLink here
The themes of Expectations can surface in the Creator’s Meditation in various ways. As we meditate, it is easy to have high expectations of ourselves to meditate "perfectly" i.e. to go through our body journey without wandering off, or to have a perfect pose etc. Observe how Suffering surfaces within the mind when we fail to meet these Expectations.
To Transform these Expectations we simply practice Stillness and simply accept / observe everything as is. We can do this by focusing on the body journey and forgiving ourselves everytime we do something "imperfect."
Know and Transform The Self!
Use the 10 Day One-Self Catalyst to develop Self-Acceptance at the deepest level of the mind. This will help you to know what it is that you are truly rejecting in yourself and others. Once you can accept yourself and others for who they are, then you will no longer feel the need to expect anything from anyone.