By Lori Lines
Social stigmatization is a symptom of our divisive culture. In our society, people frequently face discrimination and are ostracized due to perceivable and imperceivable differences alike. This alienation is often due to factors people cannot change or are very hard to change such as race, intelligence, culture, physical ability, socioeconomic status, and gender.
Stigmatization has detrimental effects. For example, the stigma that those with mental illness face can lead to isolation, inability to seek appropriate care, and an overall decline in well-being. Of course the effects one may face when they carry the burden of social stigma varies broadly. Nevertheless, the result is typically very damaging for the ostracized, damaging for judgmental individuals, and damaging for society, as the foundation for these distorted belief systems.
Social stigmas result from judgment. Judging others is the lifeblood of the ego-self. The ego feels more empowered when we are critical of others. It is strengthened when we believe we are smarter, richer, more attractive, and more able-bodied than those around us. The ego is also strengthened when we perceive we are less-smart, poorer, less attractive and less able-bodied than those around us. Judging others elicits a false sense of ego-control and security. Regardless of whether we feel we are besting or not besting our neighbors, colleagues, friends, or strangers.
The ego-self thrives on the misplaced belief that our worth, or lack of worth, stems from these judgments. This process can become so automatic that it goes unchecked. When we say, "I am smart," the ego may whisper, "compared to your coworkers that bungle presentations." When the ego is in control, "I am enlightened" can also be accompanied by an automatic, subconscious thought like "more than that narrow-minded person." Conversely, the ego is in control when we have the reverse thoughts, "I am NOT smart," or "I am not as good as...", or "I'm less enlightened compared to...."
These judgements and ego-centric comparisons remain as long as we refuse to recognize the universal interconnectedness throughout humanity and the Divine. Yet again, the sneaky ego-self whispers more distorted realities in our ear, that we are special, or less-special, and unique only as long as we uphold our separateness from others. We are misled to believe that our magic and majesty is lost when we are one of many, a single droplet in the sea of humanity. So, we default to otherness, isolation, and loneliness from those who are stigmatized.
This can be construed as a very low-vibrational state that keeps us from enlightenment. The truth is, we are all connected, and the means to achieve individual, societal, and eventually, global awakening is through unity, compassion, and love. We challenge and ultimately transcend the ego with a perspective of neutral togetherness, thereby reaching our highest potential individually and universally.
To get there we must learn to forgive and just trust. Once again, this is contrary to our ego-impulses. The ego-driven view is that forgiveness and trust is weakness and vulnerability. Picture the ego as a little red imp on your shoulder, trying to convince you when you forgive, you submit, and when you trust, you expose yourself to danger. It is yet another ego defense that twists our perception to retain control. When the ego is in control, we fear surrender and avoid it at the expense of harming others and ourselves.
The inability to trust and forgive keeps us tethered, limited, constricted, and even depressed, perpetually seeking new ways to appease the insecure ego. Surrender is the only release from the exhausting cycle that diminishes us and others. Yield to the universe, the Divine, and uncertainty, break free of conditioned fears, beliefs, and limitations, relinquish the ego-driven need for control, and have faith that whatever the universe has in store for you will help you grow and achieve your highest potential.
In a state of surrender, there is no need for comparison or stigma. We understand that each of us has unique purposes, gifts, and paths to pursue. In that light, there is no need for distinguishing ourselves from others because we each have an individual journey to uphold. Yet, we share a collective goal of alignment with our higher-selves and enlightenment of the collective unconscious. It is because of this shared mission that we must uplift each other with love and support.
As we turn down the volume of the petulant ego perched upon our shoulder, thank it for protecting us when we have needed it, and begin surrender, we become more observant of harmful behaviors, words, and perspectives. Leading us to challenging, and ultimately, overcoming distorted belief systems.
As the wave of surrender begins to swell within our individual psyches, our neighborhoods, our states, and our countries, we will come to know the joy of releasing negativity to allow humanity's beauty and goodness to be reflected and celebrated in every one of us.
In love and truth,
Author Lori Lines
Disclaimer: Lori is a high-level channel. The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.