Stories and Suffering
What a miserable day.
He didn’t have the decency to return my call.
She let me down.
Little stories we tell ourselves and others, often in the form of complaints. They are unconsciously designed to enhance our always deficient sense of self through being “right” and making something or someone “wrong.” Being “right” places us in a position of imagined superiority and so strengthens our false sense of self, the ego. This also creates some kind of enemy: yes, the ego needs enemies to define its boundary, and even the weather can serve that function.
Through habitual mental judgment and emotional contraction, you have a personalized, reactive relationship to people and events in your life. These are all forms of self-created suffering, but they are not recognized as such because to the ego they are satisfying. The ego enhances itself through reactivity and conflict.
How simple life would be without those stories.
It is raining.
He did not call.
I was there. She was not.
— Eckhart Tolle