The role of Perception in Freedom
The past few weeks, we watched a Christmas movie almost daily, mostly from Hallmark. We love the gentle atmosphere, the cheerful note of Santa Claus, the Christmas decorations, the lights, the music and an inspiring message. And yes, we fully realise that it is a Matrix program in the Matrix that may cause you to frown your eyebrows. But there is more.
When we see the Christmas film as a picture provided by the Matrix to be pursued, of course, programs become visible. It is interesting for us to investigate which programs are running within Christmas films. Which themes keep coming back? The striking thing is that the films also contain affirmations of Power Within in addition to the external Matrix’s recurring stereotypical themes.
The Christmas movies we have observed are usually movies about family, love relationships, and work dynamics. What is pobably very recognisable in family dynamics is the theme of parent's expectations towards the child (son or daughter both occur and from young to old) and vice versa. That seems to be the core of the storyline in that type of Christmas movie. Most confusions in these dynamics result from unspoken, or unconscious but tangible expectations that often led to confident choices in the past, such as breaking contact or taking a job far away from the family. The opposite also happens: the (adult) child clings to the (often single) parent to ensure the parent’s survival, but at the expense of the child’s private and professional life.
Looking through these dynamics, we see that everything ultimately revolves around the perception from which we experience, judge, condemn and expect something. We then use that to shape our lives (with or without clear communication to those around us). The extent to which the diversity in perception in a family, love relationship or work dynamics is respected (and maybe present) determines whether there is a determined movement or a standstill.
Examples of programs
In Christmas films, we see five examples of programmes that recur frequently and influence the perception of freedom. We discuss them briefly.
The family or company always comes first
This notion is a powerful expectation, originated from the reptilian brain, forcefully restricting freedom. This expectation is generally unspoken in family dynamics because it is so obvious (“we have been doing this for years”; “this is our tradition”). It is almost a DNA programming that is clearly passed on as an outdated family value as if the whole world has remained the same. Parents live them for their children and preferably with and validated by the grandchildren. This phenomenon may go together with proudly saying, “Aren’t they cute, they just look like … (name of father, mother, deceased member of the family)”. In this way, they unconsciously invalidate the person concerned versus supporting being himSelf or herSelf.
If it is a family business, its history and emotional value play a significant role, because after all, “The company has been in the family for xx years, and I have to preserve it”. In non-family businesses, it is precisely for this reason that it is often literally wrtitten in black and white, i.e. in the contract "You must perform because otherwise .... (fill in the blanc; anything from being fired to financial penalties)". The employer puts loyalty above the family to achieve (financial or sporting) success. This programme continues for both types of businesses until an event happens, leading to the insight that a balance is essential. After that, the persons involved restate social ties as valuable, and that programme is more beneficial for now.
Giving or gaining respect
The critical question above all is: “What is respect?” The Cambridge Dictionary gives us two meanings that fit here: A) Respect noun (Admiration): Admiration felt or shown for someone or something that you believe has good ideas or qualities, and B) Respect noun (Honour): Politeness, honour, and care showed towards someone or something that is considered important. Also, a) a feeling that something is right or important and you should not attempt to change it or harm it, and b) The feeling you show when you accept that different customs or cultures are different from your own and behave towards them in a way that would not offend.
Sometimes people say, apparently quickly: “Of course do I respect your decision”. Subsequently, this raises some new questions concerning the practical implementation: a) Is respect confused with “meeting somebody else’s expectations”, b) Is there mutual respect, or is it only a one-way direction?, and c) Is it respect or is consciously or unconsciously fear for something else (rejection, loss, etc.) involved to give in? One can only answer these questions at that moment when one is de-attached (not responding from the ego to what is happening).
In the last two years, we have increasingly seen that getting respect or the very lack of it is why many protagonists (m/f) resign or end their relationship immediately. Also, having to participate in unfair games can be the reason for the separation of parties. This process of standing up for one’s values and standards thus strengthens Self-confidence.
Traumas that either must not be stirred up or, on the contrary, must be integrated.
This often ambivalent fact determines the actions of the main characters in all relationships. Three roles are essential here: the protector, the protected, and the rescuer. One can adopt these roles consciously or unconsciously, independent of the mutual relationship (parent-child, lovers, boss-employee). What is striking is that the protected person can experience the protection (preventing the trauma from resurfacing) as both pleasant and suffocating. Or rather his or her neurological system, which after all reacts first (see blog Unknown sets Free). That is why traumas are still sacred (‘protected’) in the first instance because the person is not yet able to open up to a new reality. No matter how much you want to help or rescue another person, the other person can only allow you in his or her own time.
Obliged to make choices in the force field of Work versus Family
This choice always gives moments of reflection (in movies often framed with beautiful pictures and sweet music): How much value or status does the work give versus loving the family or the relation with a significant other? Work usually stands for position and polarisation (me to the other). Family and the relation stand for connection and the most crucial thing in life (me together with the other). The latter is indeed a frequently occurring program in Christmas movies, but it also touches the chord of Human Being versus Human Doing. In most movies, that dilemma becomes visible by a career-oriented lead (usually a woman who works hard from trauma) and another person who loves Christmas (read: tradition).
Often, the other person or the company imposes the choice with tremendous time pressure and manipulation (e.g., “You have to come for the interview tomorrow because you want that job isn't it?). That triggers the protagonist’s reptilian brain to prevent them from feeling whether the imposed choice is supported and carried by their heart.
The typical Christmas movies always end with a Happy End as a solution for the drama that occurred. It is interesting to ask whether the persons involved solved the drama or whether they live on the other side of the same medal? The question becomes thus, what does an essential solution mean in a framework of programs that run the whole show in most cases? The answer to this is determined by the extent of how connected to yourself you need to be, to live from your Source Being as Original Human, full of Self-Trust.
So much for the framework (the Matrix) in which the film script truly takes place. We could recognise things from our own lives or what we could see around us.
Detachment from the above programmes and letting go of expectations (the ones imposed by oneself and by others) frequently happens by first taking control of one’s own life situation or circumstances in one way or another. You can, of course, mentally exert control through manipulation, closing the heart, getting out of the connection, fighting or fleeing, submissiveness, dominating, emotional blackmail, sticking one’s head in the sand, addictions, etc. Seen from the outside, it may look like freedom this way. However, that way also requires a defence of the living situation and living and working conditions. That defence causes an internal struggle between A) meeting the requirements (of oneself and the other) and therefore think that one is “safe”, or B) do not meet those requirements, lose control and therefore believe that one is “unsafe”. Moreover, this self-imposed defence costs an enormous amount of life energy and does not contribute to changing the programmes that, if we are honest, are past their expiry date.
Claiming your freedom
Isn’t it, therefore, the ultimate challenge, which we all face at some point in our lives, to take the risk of investigating this for ourselves and to experience the unknown outcome beyond the programmed Personality? It needs a leap of faith.
What perception of freedom do you want to live with, and which relationship do you prioritise when you must make a choice: the connection with your Source Being or the relationship with something or someone outside of yourSelf? Is it selfish in the eye of expectations to choose for yourSelf from the heart? Is it selfless to make yourSelf subordinate to the other? One cannot run with the hare and hunt with the hounds. Or would a balance be possible and if so, who is then determining the balance, yourSelf or the other (ego)?
What would happen if we enter our deepest fears and risk the potential losses people like us to believe? Do we dare to open the safe (as in the movie Inception) through all layers of a projected self? Which world then opens its doors?
The genesis of new possibilities is, of course, also present in Christmas movies with inspiring messages. The one that stayed with us most was ‘Your strength is primarily living your talents regardless of expectations or circumstances’. Living from your BEING allows you to evolve in this earthly time. It is worthwhile NOW to create clarity in this for yourself. Because of this, it will naturally become apparent to your surroundings. Consequently, you will be an inspiration for the occurring transition which involves all of us (whether you like it or not; it is happening).
You can only be yourSelf with your once hidden but now visible, True Freedom. In this True Freedom, respect and love are present for yourself and others. And to cancel the ancient program “What will the other person think of me?”, realise that the other's perspective to understand you is not your responsibility. You are 100% involved, but not responsible for the perspective, choices and awareness of others.
In this way, there is (still) respect for (the input of) others, but there is no attachment to the approval of others. This attitude gives the True freedom to make Independent, balanced choices in every moment.
The holidays are coming: a wonder-ful opportunity to conduct research, practice and gain experience in daily life to live your potential.
We wish you a pleasant time with a lot of pleasure.
Niek & Jolande
November 2018, last updated 20 March 2021