Tribalism & Relationships
“The tendency toward tribalism can keep us stuck in repeating negative cycles in our intimate relationships, and can wreak havoc when a relationship is ripe for transition. Tribal mentality often teaches a righteous stance in relationships: an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth. When we feel violated, the first thought is vengeance, rather than forgiveness.
Tribal mentality even has gender-specific undercurrents – women do vengeance differently than men. Yet for both genders, what rules the day is the tribal mentality that holds “breaking up is painful” or “betrayal warrants retaliation.”
Healing revolves around this crucial question: “Do you want to make different choices?” Are we willing to let go of old, constricting tribal patterns? Sadly, the answer quite often is “No.” Being healthy isn’t always the most appealing option. Quite frankly, in many cases, it’s not appealing at all. What is most appealing is being out of pain. Old patterns are difficult to relinquish because they do serve to relieve pain, even if it is only in the short run.
Change is terrifying for many precisely because short-term pain relief must be given up. Deep healing requires learning to tolerate the pain that comes with change. Fortunately, the growing pains that come with new behavior – with making the choices that will change your life – are often short-lived.
Thought alone doesn’t heal. Nor does action without thought. For deep healing to occur, we need the chemistry of conscious thought and direct action combined. Every thought or attitude we have – whether consciously chosen or unconsciously adopted through the tribal mind – invests a part of our life-force into that thought or attitude. This is true whether the thought is one of betrayal and vengeance, or of understanding and forgiveness.
What matters is that a whole system of consciousness – the old tribal mentality – no longer holds us enthralled. We no longer have faith in those limiting patterns of thought. Through this transformation we learn a whole new level of trust. We break the habit of telling tribal lies which bring short-term comfort but long-term pain. We develop a new sense of self-worth and of trust and honor.
In spite of all the heavy tribal conditioning, we now have hope because tribal mentality the world over is going through a vast transformation. And each one of us can play a vital role in this transformation.
With increasing numbers of individuals changing and transcending limiting tribal beliefs, the codes of the tribe are being affected. As we collectively change and evolve, the tribes around us gradually change and evolve with us. Yet ultimately, the journey upon which we are embarking is an incredible solo flight of transcending the tribe to find our own trust, honor, and new sense of self-worth and meaning in life.” – Transcending Tribal Mentality by Caroline Myss
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Thank you for reading!