Self awareness, the realisation of who, or what you really are, comes to some people with age, but for me, it came at a point in life where I was at my all time low. Seeing my true reflection in the mirror was a long and painful process, there’s no joy in realising that you are someone you don’t really like, but it lead me to the turning point that has allowed me to change for the better.
It is said ‘that we hate in others, what we refuse to see in ourselves’ and I suddenly understood what that meant. Things that annoy us about other people, are sometimes the very things in us that annoy others. Being honest enough with ourselves, to admit our failings or less attractive traits, can be the start of a process of self improvement.
In Nichiren Buddhism we refer to that process as Human Revolution, the nurturing and growth of self improvement through the acquisition of wisdom, courage and compassion. It is achieved, over time, through a determined adherence to our practice and continued learning.
So next time, before you go criticising others, take a long, hard and honest look in that mirror, and have the courage to see the faults you are so desperate to hide from yourself. It will be a painful process, but you will emerge on the other side, like a butterfly emerging from the chrysalis, a better and more beautiful being for doing it.