To Observe and Not Absorb

Recently I have started to appreciate the energetic changes in myself, and how I work with people. I was reflecting on my career in health and social care and thought back to the days I used to absorb everything. I was literally a human sponge for any emotion that was flying around; the more intense, painful and heavy the emotion, the more I seemed to attract it! 

I often was in deep sympathy with my clients and would want to take away their pain; this meant I jumped in the well to save them, leaving us both stuck in the mud.

When working at hospital I would feel absolutely exhausted, drained and often sad. After work I would think of the patients I met that day, often waking up in the night worrying about something I said, or how I could have made it better for them.

This absorbing of emotions did not just happen at the hospital… I used to absorb the bus driver’s frustration, my friend’s distress, my parents’ expectations, the anguish on the news, the angst in the shopping center the list goes on… no wonder I was a nervous wreck!

As you can imagine, having all these emotions flying about the place and me acting as a sponge absorbing them left me quite confused as to who I truly was.  The boundaries of who I was and who was another would become foggy – I would be left feeling out of sorts and agitated. Sometimes I even came away with the symptoms of my patients.

All this absorbing of others’ emotions was leading to a path of illness and disease.

I could sense this and could also see this in many of my colleagues who were stressed and burnt out. Thankfully I made a stop. I knew if I continued the way I was going I would end up mentally, emotionally and physically very ill.

So what happened?

I was introduced to Universal Medicine and it was here I learnt about the Gentle Breath Meditation™. I learnt about energy and how to discern it – that is, how to still feel it, but to not let it in and affect me.

“Taking other people’s stuff on creates 80% of illness and disease in this world absorbing others people’s stuff is poison, which you cannot debase so easily to heal. By Serge Benhayon, Esoteric Teachings and Revelations A New Study for Mankind, page 486

This has been life changing and a true miracle for me. I care deeply for all those I meet and now to the best of my ability live by the principle ‘observe and not absorb’: this allows me to be a 100 million times better carer, reflecting true love and healing rather than emotionally wanting to save someone (= exhausting!).

This is of course a constant work in progress and sometimes I still find myself absorbing the energy around me, but thanks to Universal Medicine I have an array of tools I use to help get me back to me.

The Gentle Breath Meditation™ is a fantastic tool to help keep me centered, in touch with who I truly am, and focused on the present moment. This allows me to give the best to those I work with without draining myself in the process.

By Anonymous 

Further Reading:
Gentle Breath Meditation in Daily Life
The Gentle Breath Meditation™ & Discovering my Inner Self

1,405 thoughts on “To Observe and Not Absorb

  1. I grew up in a religious family where it was encouraged to forgo your own feelings and support others because life was not about you but about helping others and the more you supported others the ‘better’ person you were and that God would love you. I understand now that this particular religion has taken one of the ancient wisdom teachings and barstadised it, in such a way that it is close to the truth but actually isn’t true at all. It is impossible to ‘save’ another, what we can do is walk beside them and reflect a different way to be, it is then their choice if they want to make the changes to their life or not.

  2. When we absorb it is like taking the pieces of everyone else’s jigsaw and muddling them up with yours but when we observe we work side by side with everyone realigning their own jigsaw.

  3. Wow do I understand about this ‘absorbing’ instead of ‘observing’ more and more. It is far from perfect and I know then, I am in constant reaction, so of course I’m going to be pooped every day. What a marker of truth when you wake up and the body is tired yet your being is awake and ready to go.

    The body continues to signal day to day, and when we focus on allowing the body to lead the way, well our lives will be very much different.

    The Gentle Breath Meditation is the key to bringing us back to ourselves, and it isn’t hard to do once you add it to your daily rhythms, it’s just like brushing our teeth.

    All I can say is thank God for the Gentle Breath Meditation, it has supported me countless times and no doubt will continue to do so, so I am not forever humanity’s sponge anymore.

  4. “I learnt about energy and how to discern it – that is, how to still feel it, but to not let it in and affect me.” Absorbing or observing is a huge topic, it’s one of my current weaker points which I’m working on daily. I have recently felt how damaging ‘helping’ energy is, that is the bastardised version that comes from a source of energy that is not loving. It might sound odd that to help another is not supportive, but it’s more the kind of help that’s being offered, one that comes from reaction and sympathy and wanting people to have the picture of a good or better life, or the help (I prefer the word support) that comes from love and is a quality that may or may not do anything in terms of taking action, but offers the energetic truth that we are all souls by virtue of what we live and then reflect.

    1. Growing up in the health care profession, I know the art to helping or sympathising. It is the biggest killer to empowerment. The most loving thing anyone can do for another is to give them space to do it themselves, in however or whatever way they want to do it. That is ‘observing’ and definitely not ‘absorbing’ or ‘helping’.

    2. Melinda Knights, what I find fascinating is how we can now talk about energy and how it affects our bodies. No one I knew had such a true understanding of energy and the two types of it, or how energy behaved until I met Serge Benhayon. The Ageless Wisdom through Serge Benhayon has gifted to the world a way to discern energy so that we do not get caught up in it, but can just observe it. This gives us all such freedom in our bodies because we are not owned by it.

  5. Just re-reading this blog reminds me of how I too used to be a sponge for all that was happening around me and how easily I would absorb things and let myself get affected, run down, depressed etc. But thankfully I too have learned tools such as the gentle breath mediation (as taught by Serge Benhayon) that have helped me to be more aware of the differences in energy that abound around us and how to hold myself steady in and amongst all of this – with no perfection of course, but such a vast support to how I can now live.

    1. I used to absorb so much, and made myself really ill as a result, now I am learning to stay observing. Going into sympathy or trying to fix another are ways we can absorb another’s energy, ‘I often was in deep sympathy with my clients and would want to take away their pain; this meant I jumped in the well to save them, leaving us both stuck in the mud.’

  6. Sometimes I find it is hard not to react to what we see around us – either in anger, frustration or sadness etc. However, whenever we react, then what we see or feel around us then has permission to affect us. The answer is not of course to shut down or harden up or to ‘protect’ ourselves energetically so to speak because all that does is simply numb us from the effects of the energy. But it is about asking us to understand the situation deeper which we are all capable of but often resist doing.

    1. Henrietta I find it hard not to react too, especially when I see someone suffering, I want to jump in and save them. For me it’s a huge learning that we are all where we are in life because of the choices we have made, and let’s face it, many of us have made some really unwise choices that have led us down a path of consequences that were unforeseen. Understanding is the key, to understand that we all have lessons in life that we need to learn and move on from, to understand that if we jump in to support another person then there’s two of us in the mud and no reflection that there is another way.

  7. One of the things this blog reminds me of is how sensitive and aware we are, and how much energy there is around us that we can be affected by if we don’t have the steadiness of our inner connection to our soul and to our body. I also find appreciating my inner qualities has helped me to form a relationship with me and establish healthy boundaries, this has been a great way to support myself after getting a bit lost in everything going on around me, absorbing it and losing me.

    1. Melinda I feel this is a great comment because I have also found that by building a relationship with my soul this has changed how I am with myself and other people. And now I wonder if the jumping in and helping people was a way to stop myself from feeling lonely as by helping others I felt needed and wanted which is a completely false way to live because it is centered on others and not my connection with myself hence the feeling of loneliness I was trying to relieve.

  8. I used to absorb loads of stuff including what was on the news, tv shows and films!!!!! The thing is if we do not have an absolute awareness of this or know how to change it then how can we? This blog is great to bring the awareness to the fore and start the discussion .. and yes I agree The Gentle Breath Meditation is the perfect tool and support in supporting us to stop absorbing and start observing.

    1. I practised acupuncture for many years, and during my training was never warned that we can potentially absorb another’s energy. I became really ill from absorbing all this poison from patients and people in general, and was finally brought to a stop when treating a patient who had had electric shock treatment and was on very heavy medication for depression.

    2. Vicky you raise a very important topic that we without fully understanding how it happens we absorb so much from the media, films etc., especially at the moment when there is so much happening in the news. So many people I talk to say they have stopped listening or watching the news because they feel it is so negative and that this constant negativity is affecting their health.

  9. I can relate to your words about not having clear boundaries, or knowing yourself clearly because of being attuned to what’s going on around you and absorbing it all. I have found the Gentle Breath really does help with this as it supports a reconnection back to our essence and establishes a sense of self.

  10. I can really relate with what you share here as I used to be the same taking on others emotions from family, friends and even the TV!!! The Gentle Breath Meditation is such a simple tool to step away from that and back to who we are. Also how can we ever truly support another if we are burnt out, a nervous wreck and sick!!! This is a real eye opener: “Taking other people’s stuff on creates 80% of illness and disease in this world – absorbing other people’s stuff is poison, which you cannot debase so easily to heal.” By Serge Benhayon, Esoteric Teachings and Revelations – A New Study for Mankind, page 486′

    1. Absorbing another’s poison will cause illness and disease in self, ‘All this absorbing of others’ emotions was leading to a path of illness and disease.’

  11. “All this absorbing of others’ emotions was leading to a path of illness and disease.
    I could sense this and could also see this in many of my colleagues who were stressed and burnt out.” So many in the caring and helping professions suffer from burn out. Learning how to observe and not absorb would be a major turn around in their training.

  12. Taking on other people’s stuff is often not considered to be harmful because the harm is not always immediate or obvious. We seem to negate that we are energetic beings. This quote below makes sense and give us a better understanding of why someone who looks super fit and healthy could still experience illness and disease. “Taking other people’s stuff on creates 80% of illness and disease in this world – absorbing others people’s stuff is poison, which you cannot debase so easily to heal.”

    1. Love what you have shared here Chan – and I agree that much of what we carry is not ours to carry but is our responsibility to lovingly hold ourselves steady and support another in a true way so that it is clear what is ours to deal with and what is another’s to deal with.

  13. “I often was in deep sympathy with my clients and would want to take away their pain”. It’s such a common and seemingly innocent thought to want to help others and take away their pain, but unfortunately it’s often sympathetic and leads to absorbing. I’m still learning this one, and learning how to observe, give space, and offer genuine care and understanding without enjoining the problem. It’s a loving detachment.

    1. This is a big learning for me too Melinda wanting to take the pain away and make everything better. But I am realising this is the catch because by trying to help, the person doesn’t get to truly feel the consequences of their actions and this is our learning that all our choices have consequences positive or negative.

    2. Yes, absorbing instead of observing is a big habit to break, and important we all understand how damaging it is, ‘Taking other people’s stuff on creates 80% of illness and disease in this world – absorbing others people’s stuff is poison, which you cannot debase so easily to heal.’

  14. We think it is caring to worry about someone else, but having been the person people have worried about, it is odd, but it doesn’t actually feel very good because there is a sense the other person does not consider I am equipped to deal with what is ahead of me. Not very empowering.

  15. We want to do the best work we can, or be the best friend we can. Listening, understanding and trying to help another fix their problems was always considered part of being a good friend. The worries are taken on and shared. But I have noticed something changes when this happens between two people and I have started to realise that the person with the issue in their lives is the only person who knows the movements they made to get there, why and how they made them, therefore they are equally the only person who can truly know how to unravel it and move a different way to ensure it does not happen again.

    1. Yes supporting the other person to find their way to deal with the situation feels very different from taking it on and sorting it – which leaves the other disempowered.

    2. This is so true Lucy, ‘the person with the issue in their lives is the only person who knows the movements they made to get there, why and how they made them, therefore they are equally the only person who can truly know how to unravel it and move a different way to ensure it does not happen again.’

  16. If we have sympathy or pitty for others we basicly judge them. This way we take on their stuff.
    When we realize that all have their own issues And creations we Can just hold them as equally powerful brothers And having comparision.

    1. Great point Sylvia, I didn’t realise sympathy is a form of judgement until a few years ago. I thought sympathy was being loving but it is, in fact, the opposite.

  17. ‘this meant I jumped in the well to save them, leaving us both stuck in the mud” – how many of us do this, with our kids, partner, family, friends, colleagues etc. How do you help someone out of predicament if all you do is join them in it?!

    1. And how funny is it to realise that many of us make exceptions when we know its ‘our mother’ or ‘our partner’ or ‘our child’ etc – it is not about being cold of course, but it is about realising that we are all beings and one is equal to another, regardless of it being a blood tie, close friend or a stranger. Family is our biggest test of true love.

  18. Anonymous , like you The Gentle Breath Meditation supports me to stay connected and not be drawn into other’s emotions or try to fix them. We cannot truly support another if we enjoin with them in their emotional state. To stay present with ourselves, loving, clear and steady offers patients and clients the opportunity to come back to themselves.

  19. The more we enjoin others in their emotion the harder it is on our body and the more exhausting it becomes, yet when we observe what is going on we are able to support someone without getting hooked into the emotion, and we retain the ability to see things clearly.

  20. Life is not perfect and we all get caught by and in things sometimes so it is great to have tools and techniques like the Gentle Breath Meditation that support me to come back to a steadiness and connection with my body.

  21. Sympathy is so exhausting or draining on the body, it offers no true way forward for another and it is an arrogance on our part for assuming another is ill equipped to empower themselves to move through their situation.

  22. Life became so much more fun after I was able to observe life more than I to absorb it as I did in the past. I do now read the situations and see what there is to learn for me and for humanity. So observing puts me in a place where I can evolve in life, a quality of life I do not remember to have since I was a little child.

  23. Letting emotions of others in is like a poison for our bodies and will dull and exhaust it so much so that we can feel ourselves at the end of our life wrecked like an old shipwreck at the bottom of the sea.

  24. I could easily call myself a sponge because I was very good at absorbing people’s emotions and easily jump in to try and rescue people out of their emotional dramas or whatever they were going through. I would think about their issues and sometimes I would get so caught up in it. This, I now realise stopped me from dealing with my own stuff and also made me feel exhausted, disconnected and not myself. Now, I have more space to contemplate and reflect on my relationships with people, my day and how I feel. By not taking on other people’s stuff, I am more steady, clear and have clarity to truly support without imposing on others. These changes within me has been incredible and I too have Serge Benhayon and Universal Medicine to thank for showing me how these tools for life are so practical and always accessible to every single one of us.

    1. Chanly88, I agree the changes you’ve made are incredible, without them we self imprison ourselves and become exhausted by our own confusion in not discerning what is ‘ours’ from what is ‘theirs’. Like you, many of us used this to distract ourselves away from our own ‘stuff’. Learning to clear our own stuff and become a clear mirror really is a breakthrough for self and supports us to offer much more to others.

    2. I can relate Chan, thanks for all you have shared here. It’s made me realise that sympathy negates the essence of the person by only seeing the problem, and it doesn’t offer the opportunity to observe or discuss how or why someone left their essence to now have their issue, and the possibility of supporting someone to then know how they separate from their true selves and how to instead live from their power.

  25. I found the Gentle Breath meditation life changing too, I take so many breathes I’m not aware of and the technique has helped me see how easily our breathe changes in certain situations and how easily with this awareness it can be changed back to my natural way of breathing.

    1. Like we made ourselves unaware offer breathing we also made ourselves unaware of our movements which can keep or bring us in a certain vibration that after a while becomes our normal way.

    1. Beautifully said Mary, you are spot on and there is nothing more supportive than love and for us to reflect who we are (love) to the rest of the world.

  26. In the past when I have taken on other people’s stuff I have ended up feeling really drained, and lethargic, and now when I listen and observe what is going on I get a much clearer picture and it is no longer clouded, and most of all I don’t feel drained or exhausted.

  27. “Taking other people’s stuff on creates 80% of illness and disease in this world”. That is huge, especially as we do that a lot. It has become almost ‘normal’ to sympathize or feel responsible for otherone’s emotions and try to solve their emotional problems. What is offered here, is a turn-around: by breathing your own breath and observe what occurs with the other, there seems to be more space to truly feel what is needed and can be of support. Often, just being and listening with loving ears.

  28. Observing and not absorbing serves us all greatly, it is a true support to be with each other and evolve together.

  29. We are all affected by our own and each other’s emotions and reactions. The more we become aware of this the more responsibility we have to step out of this game for the benefit and liberation of all.

    1. Like you say Nicola, if we step out of the situation then we are also able to help others with a wider perspective and a less emotional response. Its a tool worth learning and living not just for ourselves but everyone around us.

  30. I first heard Serge Benhayon present on Observe don’t Absorb in 2005 (although I am sure he has been saying it longer than that) and it still remains one of the most practical, every day, every moment learnings that I have been graced with for to truly live in this way is a great joy and liberation.

    1. Same here Nicola, to ‘Observe don’t Absorb’ is the most practical tool for life and it makes so much sense. To be able to stop and observe is a deeply loving choice as we allow ourselves a moment/space to see what is in front of us instead of jumping into a reaction.

      1. My feeling is that at some point we do not even need to exactly stop to observe, but develop a way of living that is observational. This leads to greater understanding and awareness and we are no longer at the mercy of having our strings constantly pulled!!!

  31. “…. reflecting true love and healing rather than emotionally wanting to save someone (= exhausting!).” What a powerful, transformational and truly loving approach to others instead of sympathy.

  32. Yes Anonymous , a great tool to be more energetic, more full of yourself and in life becoming more aware and observant, as we are breathing less of the world in and more of our Godly selves (source: love).

  33. Our body is not just for our own. It is feeling everything around and processing a lot every moment. A choice we make to reflect heaven can be clearing lots for people; a choice to reflect man we can be burdened by many people.

  34. Like in tango, there are always two: the human being that aims to do something for others who are undergoing difficulties, and the human spirit who knows that this will have deleterious consequences to us and cheers us to go there.

  35. I love how it all comes back to our responsibility which puts us back in the place of power. I feel most people are aware of how we get affected by others’ emotions and what goes on around us, and how harmful that can be, and it’s so easy to blame what’s out there for how we feel.

    1. So true, it is so much ‘easier’ to blame another than take responsibility for our own actions and yet by taking responsibility there is space for everyone to grow.

  36. Countering another’s emotional distress with our own can at times seem natural and supportive, and yet perhaps we are just jumping into the same hole with another or bringing a shovel to make the hole bigger and harder to get out of?

  37. The quote by Serge Benhayon that 80% of our ills come from absorbing other people’s emotions is one to consider deeply. It makes sense that its hard to heal an emotion that wasn’t ours in the first place. It made me think about if we all learnt to observe and not absorb, how our health would radically change.

    1. Yes, when the harm of absorbing other people’s emotions is generally understood and that understanding integrated within the medical profession’s approach to healing it will be a paradigm shift that will revolutionise the healing of illness, disease and mental health.

    2. and also let’s not forget that we ourselves are often the other (ie the one expressing) so we have a responsibility to not indulge in emotions either by expressing or absorbing – same same!

  38. It is truly exhausting trying to save another and our bodies cannot but reflect this choice to jump in another man’s life or absorb all life is offering. I was like that too and was a nervous wreck myself but not admitting this truth for myself but also not knowing how to change it – I tried all kind of new age meditations that should protect me. I now know, using the Gentle Breath Meditation, we don’t need to protect ourselves, it is the other way around when we breath our own breath we open ourselves to who we are and to the world being aware of what is going on energetically and just observe and not take things on.

    1. Yes, through making the Gentle Breath Meditation part of our day to day, there is a relationship built with the energetic aspect of life and we see there is so much more at play than what we see hear or can touch. There is a great freedom with that multidimensional awareness.

    2. I’ve read a lot in the New Age about people affected by others energies, it’s sometimes called being an empath or simply being a sensitive person. There are many techniques on offer to remedy absorbing like covering yourself with white light, visualising being in a bubble, etc, but the underlying view is that it’s something that affects certain people and they need to learn to manage it, often with an intent to protect ones self. None of this worked for me. With the work of Universal Medicine we are able to return to our soulful essence and live from that connection to our true selves, and to understand how reaction, sympathy or taking things on is related to absorbing, and then observe life as a way to avoid absorbing. I have found this works very effectively and has empowered me to understand what’s going on when affected by another’s energy, and to take responsibility to heal the underlying issues.

      1. In the past i too tried many ‘techniques’ to stop me absorbing another’s energy, like you, I found that none of the ‘techniques’ worked. What has been supporting me are understandings from Serge Benhayon, ‘understand how reaction, sympathy or taking things on is related to absorbing, and then observe life as a way to avoid absorbing.’

  39. 80% is a high percentage of illness and disease that is caused by taking on other people’s emotions! Just imagine what would happen to the rates of illness and disease if we were just to stop and consider this fact let alone find ways or tools such as the Gentle Breath Meditation to support us to observe and not absorb life.

    1. That is true and the more liberated we become the more we observe and the more others get to observe!

  40. There is a real focus on the other person and their care and wellbeing when I absorb, instead of starting with me and my connection and letting everyone take care of themselves. It doesn’t mean there is a lack of care from my part, just not an emotional attachment. I can’t say enough how destructive sympathy is, I know we consider it a form of care but it’s the main reason I absorb another’s pain, emotion or distress. That doesn’t help either of us. The body really reveals what the truth is about words (like sympathy) and the energy behind them.

    1. Melinda what this blog and all the comments are showing me is that as a race of human-beings we do care, we care deeply about ourselves and each other as we know that we are all connected by the very particles we are made of, which are the same particles that make up our universe, fact. There is a knowing that we have completely stuffed up how we are to be with each other and now live so very far away from who and what we are. There is a pull from the universe that we can all feel in our bodies that is devoid of all the emotional entanglement we have wrapped ourselves in and this pull that we can all feel will support us to realign back to the universe when we are able to do this all the emotional entanglement, lies and deceit will drop away and we will discover the truth of who we are and why we are here and what we are all supposed to be doing.

  41. I agree Anonymous , the Gentle Breath Meditation is a fantastic tool that we continually have on tap to support and nourish us throughout life.

  42. Powerful sharing. The unfortunate reality that in today’s world many don’t yet know the fact that we absorb the emotions of others. Just having this article on the Internet is bringing the awareness of this very real fact into the minds of us all.

  43. Learning to hold steady, to just observe what’s going on around us without getting emotionally attached and/or entangled is a great support to ourselves and others. When we get emotionally wrapped up in stuff, it’s easy to lose ourselves in it and the steady reflection that we could offer to each other- the reminder that says there’s more to you than your emotions, and your emotions aren’t an intrinsic part of who you are- is wobbled. Observing and staying steady is far more loving than wading in and attempting to fix everything, hoping to make ourselves feel better. Observation doesn’t mean taking no action and not speaking up, but bringing understanding to a situation so that everyone can see their part more clearly and we can tap into that sense of knowing just what’s needed in that moment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s