Using the Aikido of Consciousness to Side-Step Blame

Wake up!
Creative Commons License photo credit: Eddi van W.

The observer self is that neu­tral inner space that allows us to rec­og­nize that peo­ple tend to auto­mat­i­cally react from their own uncon­scious pat­terns of belief, rather than because of us. This knowl­edge makes it pos­si­ble for us to stop mak­ing their reac­tiv­ity about us.

This means we can stop tak­ing the doings and say­ings (and all the reac­tions) of oth­ers, so per­sonal! We do not have to make their choices, and reac­tions towards us, about us.

None the less many of us do per­son­al­ize the behav­ior of oth­ers. We assume peo­ple do what they do “at” or “to” us, and that’s where the trou­ble begins.

Rather than observ­ing that peo­ple are mis­er­able because they believe their own unhappy thoughts about them­selves, and the world, we, like them, tend to blame exter­nal fac­tors, out­side sit­u­a­tions, and other peo­ple, for the mis­ery we feel, and that we wit­ness in them. This search for an exter­nal cause makes it easy to fall prey to a “witch hunt” (vic­tim) men­tal­ity in an effort to find who or what is to blame for the mis­ery we see and experience.

The sim­ple truth is that as long as we think there is an exter­nal cause for our own (and their) mis­ery, we will have no choice BUT to go on seek­ing something/someone else to blame for the unhap­pi­ness we see.

The blame game is one of find­ing exter­nal causes for pain, rather than to under­stand that all mis­ery orig­i­nates in the mind of the one who is mis­er­able. Always. No excep­tions. Yes, sad, trau­matic, painful things hap­pen in life, to all of us. But even our emo­tional responses to things such as these are cre­ated by what we tell our­selves about them, and not the events in and of themselves.

This need to find some­thing out­side our­selves to blame is a pri­mary char­ac­ter­is­tic of vic­tim con­scious­ness. Tak­ing per­sonal respon­si­bil­ity is equated with self-blame when we are oper­at­ing in vic­tim con­scious­ness, and that HURTS too much! So for most of us in vic­tim con­scious­ness, it is far more prefer­able to blame some­one else for our pain than to expe­ri­ence the debil­i­tat­ing pain and self-degradation that blam­ing our­self causes! And who can blame us?

Blam­ing is what those of us caught up in vic­tim con­scious­ness do. This is because no one ever taught us that it is our think­ing and not out­side events that cause our pain. There­fore when we are unhappy, we look for some­thing “out there” to blame for it. Blam­ing oth­ers becomes a way to pro­tect our­selves from being blamed: blam­ing out­side peo­ple and events becomes our default set­ting for self-preservation.

But there is another alter­na­tive besides the “blame game.”

Our per­cep­tion and response to life changes dra­mat­i­cally when we learn to look for the under­ly­ing belief pat­tern that is the true cul­prit that causes our unhappiness.

Rather than to engage in a vic­tim strat­egy that requires us to defend our inno­cence by, in turn, blam­ing oth­ers, we can instead learn to side­step the accu­sa­tions oth­ers hurl our way in their attempts to pro­tect them­selves, and, like an Aikido mas­ter who skill­fully steps aside, we learn to allow the neg­a­tive energy force of blame to go by us observed, but unheeded. This side-stepping motion allows us to step aside into an observer space, to remain calm and detached (rather than to per­son­al­ize the attack), and so allows some­thing totally new and more pos­i­tive to tran­spire instead.

I rec­om­mend my book, Guid­ing Prin­ci­ples for Life Beyond Vic­tim Con­scious­ness, as a step by step guide in learn­ing more about how to access observer con­scious­ness, and side­step blame.

Bless­ings, Lynne


  1. Barb says

    I’ve been mean­ing to write this for a very long time.

    You are right. You’re right about it all. I under­stand now. Thank you.


    • Lynne says

      You are so wel­come, Barb.

      Jacque­line Small, a men­tor and good friend, used to tell us, “the truth can­not be taught … but it can be caught.”

      I find those words to be true. We can­not under­stand truth until some­thing in us is ready to hear it. We can hear truth spo­ken many times, but we just can’t get it until we do — and that takes what­ever and how­ever long it takes.

      Until then our self-created suf­fer­ing moti­vates us to keep look­ing deeper … until finally one day, when we are ready, the truth is revealed and we sud­denly GET it!

      I am delighted that you “got it.”

      Life only gets bet­ter from here! 😉


  2. says

    I very much appre­ci­ate the thought pro­vok­ing com­ments and feed­back. They offer me an oppor­tu­nity to deepen and clar­ify my train of thought, so thank you both Barb and Jan.

    You’re right, Barb, there IS some­thing essen­tial miss­ing here, points made else­where in my writ­ing, but not included here, that are crit­i­cal to fully under­stand­ing this idea about mov­ing away from blame.

    There’s a two-fold set of prin­ci­ples that when under­stood and applied make all the difference.

    The first prin­ci­ple is this: It is not what hap­pens to us that deter­mines our level of vic­tim con­scious­ness, but what we do with what hap­pens to us that deter­mines our vic­tim statue!

    There is no deny­ing that bad, hor­ri­ble things hap­pen in our lives, we ARE vic­tim­ized, but whether or not we go into vic­tim con­scious­ness depends on how we per­ceive those painful events.

    When we insist on see­ing our­selves as vic­tims — which is what we are essen­tially doing when we blame (BTW, blame is not to be con­fused with the clar­ity that comes from stand­ing in Real­ity, aware of the dif­fer­ence between what is our respon­si­bil­ity and what is theirs, and hold­ing each account­able for their own behav­ior) — we vic­tim­ize ourselves!

    How is that? Because when we blame we are essen­tially say­ing that some­one else has con­trol over our emo­tional well-being. But giv­ing that respon­si­bil­ity to them is some­thing we get to choose! And why would we choose to give some­one else, espe­cially some­one who abuses, juris­dic­tion over our own sense of well-being?!

    I was sex­u­ally abused as a child. For years, I par­tic­i­pated in all kinds of ther­a­peu­tic mod­els in address­ing my “abuse issues.” I did anger work, shame-reduction work, emo­tional release work of all kinds, includ­ing con­fronting the abuser in my fam­ily. I’m not say­ing any of that was unnec­es­sary — obvi­ously it was nec­es­sary for all sorts of rea­sons, because I did it and I have come to trust the process of get­ting here. :)

    Many years into that process of deal­ing with abuse, I had a rev­e­la­tion that unrav­eled the whole sit­u­a­tion and did more to bring me to a place of inner peace, accep­tance, and for­give­ness than any process I’d expe­ri­enced any­where before — or since! None of the other meth­ods have come close to the emotional/mental lib­er­a­tion that this under­stand­ing has allowed in me.

    I came to real­ize that it was not the abuse itself that had been most dam­ag­ing to me … but that the thing that was most dam­ag­ing was the belief I held about myself as some­one who had been through this abuse. That was what was caus­ing me the ongo­ing pain and prob­lems in my life. It was believ­ing that I was irrepara­bly dam­aged as a result of what had hap­pened to me that was doing me in much faster than the abuse itself.

    Believ­ing such a thought prompted me to think, feel, and act like a vic­tim and that was what was lim­it­ing my life expres­sion — it was much more the cause of my unhap­pi­ness than was the abuse itself.

    I real­ized I could go on being jus­ti­fi­ably angry with my abusers, I could go on rail­ing against them and blam­ing them for my unhap­pi­ness … but the cost to me of doing that was big­ger than I was will­ing to go on expe­ri­enc­ing. Because to do so meant that I had to go on see­ing myself as a vic­tim — as some­one who had been dam­aged for life — and what can some­one like that ever expect from life? How was I ever going to feel bet­ter as long as I needed to hold onto a story about my life as hav­ing been ruined by some­one else?!

    I men­tioned a two-fold under­stand­ing, and here’s the other part of mak­ing this process work on the ground in real life situations:

    Not only is it how we see things that deter­mines whether we are in vic­tim con­scious­ness, but we must also come to under­stand that the world is, and can only be, a reflect­ing sur­face. It mir­rors to us in form what­ever our own per­sonal belief sys­tem is.

    This is the design of the world. Ancient prin­ci­ples teach us that the world is con­structed to show us in phys­i­cal, con­crete form every sin­gle thought that is, or has ever been thought.

    And our own per­sonal real­ity is exactly that! It is a fleshed out ver­sion of our own belief system!

    What this means is that there is no coin­ci­dence in the cir­cum­stances of our lives. We will expe­ri­ence in life that which shows us what we have come to believe and expect (which may not be at all what we want!).

    If I have a belief sys­tem that says I am unfairly judged and mis­treated by oth­ers, I might well find myself sit­ting unjustly accused in a cell.

    I then have two choices: I can either focus on myself as a vic­tim of life and feel all the bit­ter­ness and rage that goes with it, OR I can use the exter­nal sit­u­a­tion to find inside my own belief sys­tem the part of my own mind that is being reflected to me through my life circumstances.

    The first way leads to the rage, futil­ity and embit­ter­ment that goes with vic­tim con­scious­ness, the lat­ter way of see­ing is one that faces real­ity, and looks for ways to grow from it.

    When we are able to move away from the blame that goes with the need to see our­selves as vic­tims, and come face to face with the real­ity of our cir­cum­stances as being mir­rors of the lim­it­ing beliefs that truly hold us pris­oner, we often find that our exter­nal cir­cum­stances will change to reflect for us our inner shift.

    If you are inter­ested in learn­ing more about how to ini­ti­ate that inter­nal shift, I hope you will read my book, Guid­ing Prin­ci­ples for Life Beyond Vic­tim Con­scious­ness.

    Hope this is help­ful,
    Bless­ings, Lynne

  3. Barb says

    That’s all fine and well but try telling this to some­one who is sit­ting in a prison cell, the vic­tim of false blame.

    They can sit in that cell day in and day out and say, this is not who I am. This is not me, this is all out­side of me, while all the while they are phys­i­cally suf­fer­ing the con­se­quences of being vic­tim­ized by an immoral, uneth­i­cal, unbal­anced hate filed
    liar(s). Can the falsely accused in such a sce­nario blame those respon­si­ble for putting them there?

    Your phi­los­o­phy is miss­ing some essen­tial components/steps.

  4. Jan says

    Tell this to a rape vic­tim in Sierra Leone, espe­cially one that has the pain still with them. It’s impos­si­ble for a per­son who has been deeply phys­i­cally vic­tim­ized to not blame to some extent. It’s impor­tant for such peo­ple to obtain jus­tice in order to get to point where they reclaim their thought process and “choose” to think what they wish, espe­cially if the abuse is ongo­ing. It’s OK to acknowl­edge and deal with a per­pe­tra­tor, in fact I think it’s essen­tial. Yet it’s dif­fi­cult for some­one in vic­tim con­scious­ness to see what IS and act accord­ingly. Some­one harms you, and you crate a story around it and that story is what hurts years later. I’ve seen vic­tims take abuse for years because they can­not see it for what it is. So ulti­mately it’s about see­ing what IS that helps peo­ple out of vic­tim con­scious­ness and some­times what IS is hor­ri­ble and should never be sugar coated. In fact some­times extreme action, even killing in self defense, is required.

  5. Kate says

    None the less many of us do per­son­al­ize the behav­ior of others.”

    I like to go another step fur­ther to see that unless we have come out of the vic­tim trance (which is like being caught up in a movie on the big screen) we not only per­son­al­ize another’s behav­ior, but we are per­son­al­iz­ing our own. And what I mean by that is that these streams of vic­tim thought con­scious­ness are some­thing that we wind up tak­ing on “as us”, yet this stream is not any part of the true unchang­ing per­fect essence of who we REALLY are. We do this blindly in igno­rance, but in moments of still­ness, we can become aware that this vic­tim thought stream really is not us at all…just a river going by that we need not stick our toes in…and do not need to per­son­al­ize.

  6. Triza says

    i have noted the vic­tim con­scious­ness episodes within my own fam­ily and finally i under­stand why it feels so bad to con­sis­tently play the vic­tim role because deep down there is always a voice that ascer­tains that this is not the truth of who we really are.
    Its a relief to observe how my thought pat­terns affect my reac­tion to oth­ers and myself and instead of judg­ment, com­pas­sion is felt and accep­tance of life as it is.Thank you for this con­stant reminder.It has been a true bless­ing to learn this

    • nandalal says

      Hi Trizia,

      Thank you for your com­ment which helps to clar­ify my doubt on one’s response to such daily tantrums day in and day out, night in and night out for years !

      Thanks once again,

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