The Power of Inter-Dependence  

Posted by Dr. Dheena Sadik

Quite often, many of us reach out to help our loved ones when they are not yet ready and sometimes not interested to be ‘saved’ by us.  Based on our personal experiences, we assume that we know what is best for them and do not easily give up trying to assist them through their individual challenges.  Are we genuinely intending what is best for them or in reality, are we insidiously controlling them using the labels of love, responsibility and care to camouflage the truth? What about their innate freedom to decide what, when, who, why and where? If we honestly empathize with them, we too would not like to be controlled and over-protected in the name of love, responsibility and care. Sometimes, the most adventurous walk is the walk in another’s shoes to understand their reality.

One way to love and support those we care about, be it our parents, spouse or partner, children, friends and relatives is to honestly let go of trying to control them with our personal perspectives of how they should live. Indeed we can offer our opinions and suggestions with respect and kindness; but our role stops right there.  Attempts of over-convincing another is often unhealthy and leads to wounding relationships. Beyond the point of expressing our views, it is indeed left up to the recipient's choice, whether or not they wish to consider our opinions. If we love someone enough to want to support them unconditionally any time they need us, then shouldn’t we also be willing to respect them enough to know when to pause? When to give them the time and space to breathe, contemplate, forgive, accept, grow and evolve naturally in directions they choose? Is it not their right?

 Inter-dependence is significantly more fruitful than independence and dependence. Consider our physical bodies as an example. When all our organ systems are healthy, they function as an organized team enabling the whole individual to thrive and prosper through various challenges. The same principle is seen in nature as well, where various systems as the water cycle, seasons, emigration and immigration of various species- all work in inter-dependent harmony to ensure an inter-connected peaceful balance. Likewise at an inter-personal social and community level, when we understand and practice inter-dependence, we open myriad pathways to synergism, which according to the Oxford dictionary is “the cooperation of two or more things to produce a combined effect greater than the sum of their separate effects.”

Our Power resides not in controlling each other, rather in allowing each other to be through our innate individual freedom.  “Live and Let Live” can only be experienced on a daily basis when we respect each other. To respect each other, we should genuinely let go of the unhealthy habit of trying to control one other. Since, in reality nobody owns anyone and each of us are here with equal rights and equal power of free will.

May we live and let live; Love and let love; Breathe and let breathe.

This entry was posted on Wednesday, June 27, 2012 at 1:03 AM . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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