It is through some recent interactions with a female friend, and looking into her mirror, that I was able to start seeing one more 'hidden' aspect of my perception. It is something that was more or less in my face all the time, but as often happens with the most obvious things, these are the easiest of all to overlook.
The way it came about is that I was firstly looking into the fear of the female that I knew I had, for a long time, but yet managed to "avoid", as if it was something "natural" - a fear of the "unknown", I told myself. Thus I used to hide it from myself as well as from others. The result was that the fear intensified hugely, and particularly at the beginning of that interaction with my friend. In other words, the fear to which I have been turning my back for long time, finally started to catch up! But still, I struggled a lot to see what it really was - for it was blinding me. What I could notice though, were the issues that were surfacing one after another in the interaction - females, marriage, sexuality etc…
Anyway, as I started to navigate through this debris, I also started to pick up on a feeling level what was going on around us; small issues, details, all these were helpful. At some point I could see what perception my friend was mirroring for me and also what I did at the beginning with both her and my perceptions.
The bottom line, as I grasped it, was that I often tended to perceive myself as the "enemy", especially either when interacting with a female, or when for example such issues would come up as marriage, girlfriends, families, etc.... In terms of sensations it would first manifest as a sudden jolt of fear, and then a particular perception would 'settle' within, which of course would colour the further interactions. So when I traced these sensations back to the issues which triggered them, the first was that of marriage. Here I was able to grasp that in fact it is not just marriage - as for example in the prospect of myself getting married - but the whole idea of family life which basically terrified me. It was a shocker to see this, but yet there it was!
This then started to bring a further trail of perceptions, such as being unlovable, being the second or even the last "choice" when it came to teachers and other figures on whom I projected parenting roles; being disillusioned, guilty and so on, within the family. I guess everyone has experienced similar things, but for me what suddenly became astonishingly clear was the link between my perception of myself and such issues as maleness, sexuality, females, family, and I guess, in short - GENDER. In particular, and by way of a conclusion at this point, it has started to clarify the following words by Théun in Volume 5, which are about the Riddle of the Heart:
"The reason why entering the realm of the heart is such a very difficult strategy to master lies once again in fear. To grasp this fully, realise that although, deep down inside, we all long to love and to be loved, we have again and again throughout our lives come up against challenges which seem to indicate that we are unlovable, and therefore undeserving either to give or receive love. As a result, we escape into the mind in an attempt to rationalise, not only our own behaviour, but also the behaviour of others towards us. In time such escapisms become the foundation upon which all of our perception is based and so, without even realising it, we get caught up in constantly defining and redefining our perception to make it even more selective and therefore to fit our view of the world. The fact is that none of us want to be hurt, none of us want to experience the pain of feeling rejected, or not worthy, or not wanted, and so we choose to see only what we choose to see, and we hear only what we want to here. In time this habit becomes so ingrained that we begin to believe our selective perception to be true. " p.85
"One of the best ways of stalking our perception of self, is to start re-evaluating our social conditioning surrounding gender, and how we relate to both males and females because of this conditioning." p.86.