Beyond Balance: Betrayal

Beyond Balance: Betrayal

Welcome to everyone! This post is intended to be for informational purposes only, and is a product of my opinion and experience as a massage therapist and life coach. Please consult with a medical provider and do your own research with any tips or suggestions I present here, and do not disregard any treatment or advice given to you already. And also please do seek help if you struggle with anything I write about in this blog.

I saw a client recently that had an experience with a betrayal in the workplace. One of his clients left his service and started their own business: a competitor. For this particular client, the weight of this occurrence manifested within his body. I picked up on it through my emotional massage work. 

As I thought about betrayal in general, insight came to me during my client’s massage, which I will now share here. The first insight came in the form of a book called The Four Agreements, wherein the author teaches us to not take betrayal personally.

Easier said than done. The very essence of a betrayal is that it feels like a personal attack by someone upon us. When I think of the times I felt betrayed in my life, it always surrounded a moment when I expected something to happen. When things didn’t go as planned, even if it was something that was completely out of anyone’s control, I still felt betrayed.

With my client, I gave him an alternative perspective by having him think of the situation from the eyes of those that betrayed him. They must have felt like it was something that was in their best interest, something that would bring success, and most likely wasn’t a malicious attack against him. Thinking of the other party helped him to not take it personally.

And if you think about it, our primary motivation in life is to help ourselves, not to interfere with someone else’s life. So why would we think that everyone is out to get us? Did that driver cut in front of you on the freeway because he saw you and wanted to mess up your morning? Not likely. He probably just wanted to get to work faster. How about when your hypothetical appointment gets cancelled just as you arrive? It is probably just a miscommunication, not an attack upon you. Seeing things from another’s perspective can calm down our apprehension and how we interpret our daily lives. 

This practice also helps us step out of a victim mentality. This mentality stifles our emotional growth and leads to reaction and less thought. Have you ever had a dream where a loved one betrayed you? It sometimes can feel hard to forgive them in real life – even though they had nothing to do with it!

The second and final insight comes from another great book, one that’s pretty well known. It’s a scripture, Luke 6:29:

“And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other;”

This scripture has since turned into a popular saying: Turn the other cheek. But the meaning behind it might be a little lost. For as I think of this saying, it usually means to forgive and forget, or to not let it bother you. As if to “turn the other cheek” refers to our butt cheeks as we walk away from the person that hurt us. This in itself is a great way to act, but…

Looking at the scripture implies that when someone strikes us, whether metaphorical or literal, we are then to offer ourselves to be hit a second time. Why would anyone do this? At first we can think that it might be a way to help the striker. If they see that we are actually inviting them to do it again, they might take pity upon us, or it will soften their heart, so that they will stop hurting us and others. This is yet another good interpretation, but let’s go even deeper.

Because there is no mention of the second party in the verse, it must be solely for the benefit of the person getting struck. Jesus also doesn’t mention anything about it hurting less, in fact logic dictates that one will feel even more pain. From the blow itself and for realizing that the striker can do it any time they wish because now they know we won’t fight back. This is a great scripture because pain is such a powerful mentor. The more you experience pain, the more you learn about yourself and others. And when you learn and grow, suddenly you find that you become so strong internally that others may not even dare to strike you again. Since there isn’t a lot of physical aggression in our daily lives, it really falls upon us to take this principle and apply it emotionally. 

And smile, you are always doing the best that you can in your situation.

Meditation tips:

  • Think of a time when you felt betrayed. Instead of living in that feeling or emotion, try to think of the possible reasons the other person did what they did.
  • Meditate on possible times that you might have betrayed another. Were you justified? Did you do it specifically to hurt another person? Are you deserving of forgiveness?
  • If betrayal is a pattern that comes often to your life, what can you learn from it? How can you carry on from a betrayal without dwelling on it?