I grew up hearing the phrase “The eyes are the windows to the soul.” I now have a wee granddaughter, soon to be a whole nine months old! When she meets someone she hasn’t seen in a while or someone totally new to her, she looks deeply into their eyes for a very long time. She doesn’t blink. There is no challenge, no fear or confrontation. She is just looking. They ask us what she is doing, why does she just keep looking into their eyes. Her parents say, “She just does that.” I have come to say, “She is learning you; reading your soul.” She is my little Soul Reader.
I have a new friend in my life, one of those instant connections with a familiarity and ease that seems paradoxical to the circumstances. We had a conversation last night about cities we had either visited or lived in. It was exciting and fun to share memories of experiences not shared, places not visited together. It was so fun! My friend looks into my eyes when we talk; as I do his. Not too many people are this present with the person they are talking with in that moment.
I like it. I like seeing and being seen without challenge or judgement. I like just being seen and having my existence, my presence in the moment lovingly acknowledged through the eyes.
The key to conscious seeing is, of course, mindfulness. When I am present with the person in front of me, I can feel my eyes soften as I look into theirs. As they accept my soft, open gaze, they know I see and hear them. They know, even if it is mildly uncomfortable at first, that I care about their well-being. I care for their hearts and their souls. They begin to consider the possibility of connectedness, oneness, love.
Consider the practice of conscious seeing or eye gazing. Begin with yourself by looking into your own eyes in a mirror. Look softly, blink, look again. Who do you see in your eyes? Do you love that person, that being within? Say it out loud. Then consider looking softly into the eyes of another when they are talking to you. Be sure to blink as it removes the effect of staring or challenging that person. Be willing to see them as you let go of the need to plan your response or be anxious to be heard yourself. Let this be their moment. I promise your turn will come.
Consider the practice of conscious seeing.