Unless you are living in a dark hole in a vast desert where there is no connection to the outside world in any way whatsoever, then you are aware that it is “Black Friday” today here in the U.S. The messages of BUY! BUY! BUY! started about two weeks ago and have inundated radio and television stations, newspapers, billboards, emails, and internet. It has been really hard to miss the message and I actually woke up yesterday morning – Thanksgiving Day – with the words “Black Friday” jumping around in my brain.
I haven’t been a “Black Friday” shopper in the past for many reasons – one reason being money, but the biggest reason is because chaos like that puts my empathic self into overdrive and I end up in the fetal position under the clothes racks from sensory overstimulation. There have been a couple times that I chose to go into the melee not to shop, but, rather, to watch all the other people shop and act insanely, but I stayed only a short while. That was fun!
I’ve thought a lot about “Black Friday” this year and the drive behind the shopping spree madness it induces. The retailers are brilliant, actually, in getting people into their stores and offering them deals of a lifetime. It is a “holiday” that triggers the Id so profoundly, that it makes it quite easy for the bulk of Americans (with money or available credit) to go mad and join the herd waiting in line in the cold, dead of night.
The Id is the part of us that gets our basic human needs met. It is always present in us and is guided by the “pleasure principle” or the practice of hedonism. It is also related to our “death instinct” or the dark nature of humanity that can so easily turn to violence. Our impulses come from our Id.
So, as we are pounded with messages about all the hot deals not to be missed at 3:00am (or, worse yet, at 8:00pm on Thanksgiving night – new, repulsive development just this year), our Id is going into overdrive with the impulse to join the hysteria and get part of the action while, hopefully, not going postal and killing anyone else in line.
Add to that, the continual poking at our Ego – telling us that we won’t be enough, have enough or be liked by others if we don’t join in the lunacy – then it is quite easy to see why many Americans are beaten into submission and find themselves milling about like mad cows in the middle of darkened parking lots and in stores where there is no room to breathe, let alone reach the stock on the shelves.
This year, as the “Black Friday” nonsense started blaring in my face, I made a conscious choice to go within and uncover my own riches and be grateful for them. Rather than giving over my money, my power, and my senses to the commercial drives of this day, I have focused on the ways in which I am blessed, the ways in which I am rich, and the ways in which I am full of magic. My focus this year has been fully on gratitude for what I DO have, rather than what I don’t have, what others have, or what the commercials say I need.
What I’ve discovered is that this holiday season is turning out to be one of the most magical holidays of my life. I feel an overflowing richness and satisfaction. And it seems that everything is flowing smoothly – even in the moments when “it” is not going as I hoped it would. Even then.
Today, as I sat down to write this, I heard the guidance to turn on a movie channel. I discovered What the Bleep do We Know to be playing. It was in a part of the movie that happens to be my favorite part – the scene where Marlee Matlin is drawing on herself as a way to turn around her thoughts that were full of self-hate to thoughts that were more loving. I remembered that when I first saw this movie, I cried during this scene because, just months before, I had started drawing art on myself as a ceremonial practice of self-love. As I watched the scene unfold, I was moved once again as I witnessed her ritual.
What does that have to do with “Black Friday”?
What you focus on grows. Really. If you chose to be focused on the deals and the need to be the first in line at the sales, you stood a very real chance of being in a constant state of panic because of how very Ego-driven the “holiday” is. If you chose to ignore it and not give into the demand of the advertisers and made a conscious choice to be focused on gratitude, then you, too, may have had the same magical, loving experience I did.
Some of the closing lines of What the Bleep really jumped out at me in relation to this topic…
Have you ever seen yourself through the eyes of someone you have become? What an initiation! Have you ever stopped for a moment and looked at yourself through the eyes of the Ultimate Observer? We are here to be Creators. We are here to infiltrate space with ideas and mansions of thought. We are here to make something of this life. We must persue knowledge without any interference of our addictions and if we can do that, we will manifest knowledge and reality and our bodies will experience this in new ways, in new chemistry, in new holograms, new Elsewheres of Thought beyond our wildest dreams. Welcome to the Kingdom of Heaven. Without judgment. Without hate. Without testing. Without anything. That we simply are has allowed this reality we call Real…” – Ramtha channeled by JZ Knight in What the Bleep do We Know?
I am grateful I made the choice I made this year and I am feeling so blessed and rich because of it. Knowing that the choice is mine in my life is such a powerful gift!
© Angie K. Millgate 2012