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How to deal with conflict is all in your mind. You may experience feelings of conflict after the conflicting situation has passed, or if you are around a person you previously conflicted with. This is just your ego's way of holding on to the past so it can form some kind of identity. Notice how there is something inside you that likes to feel hard done by, mistreated or in any way negative about something or someone else.
As you notice them or any other uncomfortable thoughts, feelings or re-living of situations in your mind, smile at them. Be the space for them and see that they are only serving the purpose of keeping the ego (your false identity) alive.
When you are in a state of presence, surrendered to what is, you have no concepts in your mind that prevent you from taking right action. Then when a seemingly threatening situation arises such as being physically attacked, whatever needs to be done will happen without you even needing to think about it.
You will not ask how to deal with conflict, you will just act if necessary.
You will not be limited by thinking you shouldn't be violent because you are a "spiritual person". Right action will not be stopped by fear, nor will you feel like violence is necessary to uphold your false sense of self. You may use violence or you may not, but there will be some degree of freedom within you, and there will be far less malice or resistance behind any of your actions.
Conflict In Your Own Mind
Of course everything is in your own mind. Even what you perceive to be other people is just an image in your mind. However conflict does not necessarily have to be between two individuals. You could experience much conflict within yourself about a number of things such as solutions to problems, what the right thing to do is, or how to be a certain way.
It may seem the harder you try to deal with this conflict through thinking about it, the worse it gets.
Listen to what your mind is doing - are there two voices in your head? Are you more identified with one than the other? Do you believe one of these voices to be you? Do you think any of these thoughts are who you are?
You are not the thinker of thoughts, you are the awareness in which they arise. Some people I have met have a voice in their head they are aware of, and another voice that they believe is them, arguing with the first voice or trying to out-think the first voice.
None of the thoughts or "voices in the head" are who you are. Just listen to these voices. This does not mean you are crazy when I say "voices in the head" - everyone has them, as thoughts, but most people see it as completely normal, because they believe the voice is who they are. You are the space in which the voice can be, the consciousness that gives power to the thought by believing it is you.
Once you begin to just listen to what your thoughts do, you realise they arise by themselves, and that they are not part of who you are. Once you become more aware of the spacious still awareness that is you, a solution to any problem will arise from deeper within you, or you may realise that what you thought was a problem actually was completely created by the mind to keep it occupied, and that no solution is even necessary.
You may find yourself allowing things to be and to take their own way, rather than imposing yourself and your desires on to things.
Resisting What Already Is
You may also feel conflict in yourself through trying to "be somewhere else", wanting reality to be different from how it is now. You may want to be different, have a different life situation, possession, status, job, whatever. If you want these things, this is not what causes you most pain. What causes you most pain is resisting the present moment. If you resist it, you suffer. If you accept it, you are instantly at peace, and far more ready to take any useful action.
Your mind may object and claim resistance is necessary for progress, but the only reason you believe in "progress" being good is so that eventually you can be more happy, at ease or peaceful. Really the only time for all that "fullness of life" is right now, beyond the physical form of reality.
When you are in a state of full acceptance, any action towards progress will be far more effective.
This acceptance is also very useful during conflict with another individual. Situations such as these then tend to resolve themselves much easier when you are not internally resisting them. Acceptance in these situations may seem difficult and illogical, yet they are times where acceptance has the most powerful and peaceful results.
How to deal with conflict becomes more obvious when you are one with the present moment. To be one with it, you must fully accept it. Then the present moment uses you for the benefit of all.
However, often action may not even be necessary. You may notice that what you used to perceive as conflict is not conflict at all, it was just your reaction that made you believe it was real.
How to deal with conflict primarily concerns your inner state. Whether your conflict is purely within yourself or perceived between you and another individual, remember:
- What does you most harm is your thoughts about a situation, rather than the situation itself.
- You are not your thoughts or emotions. You are the awareness behind them.
- Be aware of your internal state at all times, and fully accept what arises within you.
- You have nothing to defend, nothing to prove.
- Use conflict to separate yourself from your ego.
- Conflict is a method of perception. It is just a concept that the ego believes in.
- Do not take conflict or how to deal with conflict seriously.
- Accept the present moment and all that it contains. Then act if necessary.
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