Public service & private hells – some thoughts regarding Teachers, Priesthood & facilitators!

“People in public spotlight can never do wrong & never do right..! Both exists all the time. When it suits the masses or media or both, they will project all the goodness on the figure and put them on a pedestal .. and when it suits the masses or media or both, they project a group shadow on the figure and hang them mercilessly.

There is something to be said about how we treat others – it’s 90% of the time a shadow projection.. . (Effectively), People are loving or hating their own suppressed/ shadow self.. (and) They just project that onto public figures! I know many learned people know this.. but being in a mild objective mood for all of 20 seconds, I thought I’d actually spell it out. To say anything else will mean many people will just slam me for taking one side or another! “

I wrote the above in connection to a friend’s wall discussion about some couple in the media.. But this applies to ANYONE in the public eye!.. and I guess I put myself in there too, as I am in the public eye. I have been so for over 20 years now.. and I can tell you, it’s never ever been easy. Before anyone jumps and shouts, yes I chose this path of public services etc – my deeper motivations `can be’ argued as ranging anything between altruism to a need for love & validation from public because I am not empowered enough or don’t have it in my life. That’s for me to know and you to speculate.

Fact remains, I chose a path of public figurehood. That doesn’t mean I chose to be hated on purpose, or like being bullied. It also doesn’t mean I chose to be `owned’ by anyone – public service does not mean public ownership. It just means that – more so than others- I chose to give more of my time for other people in an open way. (many people do this, but they do so privately.. so you can’t call them public figures’).

Think about that for a moment too. Friends in communities and groups support one another behind the scenes but they don’t announce it or talk about it.. We call that being a friend. But when we set ourselves in a position to do that to any stranger who walks into our lives, we call that public service – be it on a paid manner a professional or a non-paid manner as a community service.

Now comes a deeper matter yet.
Those is public eye aren’t all bitches or bastards.. Some of them are well-meaning politicians, priests & priestesses, teachers and facilitators! (like I am, and like my father was before me, and like my uncle in another country).

People in public service are humans too. They/we/I have feelings.. and not all have a thick skin to cope with abuse, hundreds of expectations, projections both good and dark. Many come into it with a genuine heartfelt motivation.. to simply want to help and make the community or world a better place.. It might all start well.. but as their `public profile’ and exposure increases, so does the reactions/ projections by others.

Sometimes the expectations of others just become too much, too overwhelming, to cope with. This can be blamed on lack of training, lack of preparation, over ambition, unrealistic expectations of the self, or being unable to balance the needs of the self and personal life against the needs of the public service … Or a number of hundred other things!

In such cases, I have 2 points to make-
1) Training & experience:
Public service is not something suited to everyone, no matter what their best intentions are – and not everyone walks into it with proper training' . It's one of thoseon the job training’ situations.

(note: I’ve held official roles such as full time Union Rep/officer/charity project manager.. before I walked into pagan community leader/facilitator roles.. so it can be said I have had some `training’.. ).
No two roles have ever been the same, and the training is not so much about learning to do the tasks.. but more about cultivating a deeper personality and/or inner strength that gives the person ability to face challenges!)

That brings me to the next point
2). Mentors and Support!
No one stands alone. Don’t even try. Anyone serving in any public capacity needs mentors and support for themselves. If not they can loose perspective, or loose motivation or worse, project their own shadows (fears, wants, needs, loves & hates) and start to harm the very people and communities they are serving!!!

People on early stages / years of being public servants need to have mentors who have travelled further along that road, and know signs, pitfalls and dangers.. so they can pass that knowledge to the less experienced.

People offering themselves as servers sometimes also need to vent' (offload..) or more professionally speaking, be counselled about the transpersonal issues that their service is bringing up in themselves.. like being at the receiving end of being bullied, hated, loved, sought after.. etc. Egos, buried prejudices, shadow projections all are at play.. and need to be aired out and worked transpersonally so that they are not subconsciously projected back at their clients’, students or communities!

In simplest form, this `venting/ processing’ can be fulfilled by counsel/chat with a close personal friends / partners / colleagues / trusted peers. But that can cause other issues (too complex to go into here). It is always better to have someone slightly removed and is more able to be detached emotionally..

These are just `some’ matters that people need to think about before firing off a post… slamming or vilifying a person in public spotlight.

-Mani Navasothy

ps. some could argue that I myself am projecting. Am aware enough to understand it.. but also aware enough to use this as a teaching point. That after all is the best a public servant can hope to do! No one is immune to their human nature! 😉 8-|

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