The Art of Getting Along

By Eric Butterworth
The Art of Getting Along

Life is set in the framework of human relations. Though conflicts arise between people, human beings are essentially gregarious creatures. Getting along with people is certainly a prerequisite to happiness and security because all humankind is interdependent. But, even more, it is a longing of the heart that arises out of the transcendent awareness of unity. People yearn for "repose in God" because they innately know that they are one in Spirit. And they are restless and uneasy in the face of all human conflict because they sense that beyond the appearance of separation there is an underlying bond of divine love...

The art of getting along is not a psychological gimmick by which to love the unlovable and communicate with the incommunicable. It is not simply adjusting to or making the best of human perversity. The "getting along" relates only secondarily to the other person. Primarily, it refers to getting along with the reality of your Self and the determination to keep the channels of  consciousness free from any and all obstructions...

There is a flow of harmony and love everywhere, whether you are aware of it or not, and whether you are consciously moving in it or not. This is what the "omnipresence of God" means. You do not leave the presence of God or the flow of life and love when you are negative or resistant. You leave the consciousness of the Presence. But you are in the flow and the flow is in you every moment and in every experience.

You may not know exactly how or why you lose the consciousness and the enveloping experience of the flow, but of one thing you can be sure: if you are being pushed around, you are out of it. You may want to fight back or cry foul. You may be certain that the problem is "out there," but the desire to retaliate or incriminate is a state of your consciousness. If, as you charge, the other person is an animal, what is to be gained if you become an animal too? Two animals do not make for harmony nor do two wrongs make a right. Jesus said, "Love your enemies…that you may be sons of your Father" (Mt. 5:44-45). Which is to say: Stop resisting and start loving. Get yourself back in the flow...

We tend unrealistically to expect the world to provide us with the kind of peace and security and love which can only come from within ourselves. We do not take people as they are but rather as fits or misfits of our standards and expectations. Then we either reject them outright or we try to change them or make them over to suit our concept of what they should be. This gives rise to the erroneous idea of making friends. Normally a friend is one who agrees with you or one who you have converted to your way, and the friendship lasts as long as he or she remains converted. In Truth, you cannot make a friend, you can only accept a friend.

No matter who the person may be, accept him or her as a person. The person may not be like you and may not like you. Let him or her be! You may not agree with the standards by which the person lives and works. But they are not necessarily wrong because they are different. Be willing to grant that he or she is in the flow of the creative process within. By so doing, you will stay in the awareness of the flow expressing in you and as you...

When you have resolved your own ego-blocked flow of love, releasing a radiant stream of forgiveness  and compassion, you can look upon the other person with a view that says, "I know that you are not really aware of what you have done to me or even what you are doing to yourself. I bless you and see you in a flow of love that may provide a whole new kind of environment where you can relax your hostility and unblock your own frustrated flow of love... "

Should you then be indifferent to people or circumstances? Not at all. It is your world. Certainly, do what you can do. But if there is nothing constructive that you can do, then it is folly to engage in self-destructive bitterness or anger or worry or fear. To get along in the world or with the world, you must stay in the flow of life. Sometimes the best way to get along with people is to get along without them. Let go…and walk on...

Excerpted from In the Flow of Life by Eric Butterworth. For more about his teachings, visit EricButterworth.com.