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My friend just doesn't get it. Please help

I tried to explain the inward looking to a close friend. I walked her through John's way of doing things, and later gave her links, which she read, but she still says she doesn't "get it." She says, "How can I put my attention on me? I'm always experiencing me, because I am me!" So I said, "Look at that painting on the wall. If you have your attention on the painting, is your attention on you, or on the painting?" She said, "It's on the painting. But I'm the one with the attention. The 'me' is always there because I'm me. It's never not there. So how can I put my attention on me, when it's always there?"

I talked with her for quite some time but gave up. I encouraged her to post a question here, but later I realized she probably wouldn't do it herself, so I thought I'd ask for her. Does anyone have any advice on how to help her "get it"?

I would just let her be now, Franco. It is not uncommon for folks to overlook the smallness of what they are looking for even though they have actually succeeded in touching it. The heart of us is such a still, small sensation that it is common not to recognize it for what it is even when you have looked directly at it (at yourself.)

Her forceful dismissal of any suggestion that it is possible to do this might be itself evidence that she has succeeded.

If she brings it up again on her own, you might either send her to www.justonelook.org and ask her to read that page, or even print it and give it to her to read on her own "“ again, only if she brings it up.

Trust the simplicity of the looking.


I'm experiencing something similar with a significant other, who does have depression (suicidal even, sometimes). And I know it would help her, but she's in her early twenties and I'm 37. I don't know if the age thing makes a difference in being able to figure out that the looking might be more important than all the forms and sensations, and the getting of things (money, power, stability, etc) "out there" in the world, or not.

At least for me, my life experience has shown me that there's no real true sanity or "happiness" to be found out there in the world of people , forms, power, money, sex, etc. Though having some of those things are nice and beneficial, ultimately it won't "do it for me", just talking about myself here.

I've tried to introduce the Looking to my SO, and so far (kind of as expected) she did not take to it, or "get it", if you will. And all the while she's suffering from depression and other things, not realizing the potential gold I'm offering her. Hope I'm not putting my foot in my mouth too soon, because I'm relatively new to the Looking. However I will say the looking is a real thing, there is a "me" here. I know that now, and I feel that now. And it's comforting and settling to turn my attention to ME.

That said, trying to pass on this message to my SO is akin to (silly metaphore time) trying to show your cat the automatic can opener (which already has a can of tuna in it) and all the cat has to do is press the button and the automatic can opener will open the can and reveal all the yummy tuna. But the cat just sits there curiously, and looks at the can opener, then gets distracted and moves on to something else of more interest.

Yes, it's a little frustrating. It's not my goal in life to show her this Looking. I won't die if she never "gets it". Part of me doesn't care. However I want to do good for her, and I do and will continue to offer this information to her, because I care about her. From another angle, it's an interesting project (for me) to find a way to somehow get the mail pass the castle gates, and get it to the person inside there.

Only way I can see it working at this point is just leave it at their doorstep, and they'll pick it up and look at it, when the mood or need arises in them. Let them discover it, rather than you forcing it upon them.

Best Wishes

I, too, have a friend who is fiercely resistant to my suggestion to try this with any seriousness. It seems to me that her aggression comes from great suffering. She says she's done it years ago, yet from what she says it's obvious we're not talking about the same thing. It's the usual trap of the familiar sounding spiritual stuff that comes in the way. She suffers nearly constantly and it's heartbreaking to watch it when I believe there could be an end to it if just one look and a few minutes of effort was given. We can't talk about it anymore, and not about much else besides. I can't do more, but I believe she has seen the change in me. I just have to leave it at that.

Other than that, I don't talk about the looking often. Sometimes when I do, I either get received well (rare cases of open minded spiritual types) or get a blank stare.

I also believe our best sales pitch is the manner in which we live our lives. It's kind of ironic.....I feel I've come full circle, as I was raised in a conservative Christian home with emphasis on 'witnessing' to convert others to Christianity and the way of Christ. I was told to tell others directly about accepting Christ into their heart, whatever that meant, but also to live such an exemplarary that others would be drawn to my lifestyle and ask how I was able to lead such a fulfilling life.


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