David, who is now in his thirties, was born a twin, but he had a tiny genetic heart defect that his twin lacked. “I was lucky, and my heart was repaired soon after I was born,” he relates. “There was no reason for me to be treated any differently from my brother.
But I remember from early on my mother’s anxious looks whenever I tried to do anything she thought was risky. My brother didn’t get those looks, and by the time we were four or five, he was considered the strong one while I was the sensitive one.
There’s a lot more to raising kids than looking at them, of course. My parents did their best to provide equally for us and to love us the same way. I accepted that I was the fragile twin, and as we grew up, it amazed me how wrong my parents had been.
My brother didn’t turn out to be a great success. I, who always expected to be on the sidelines, grew up to get scholarships, a much better education, and a teaching job at a good university. “It took me years to realize that we were both shaped to become what we are.”
This is one example of seeing, but many others come to mind. We look at those we love entirely differently from people we don’t love. Your gaze doesn’t fall passively. It conveys meaning, it makes another person aware of something. In other words, your awareness speaks to theirs, and that is enough to create changes in the brain, leading to changes elsewhere in the body.
There’s no limit to the result. The secret is to create positive effects instead of negative ones. Seeing is active. You send out energy, and take in energy from others. You can decide to see with love and understanding, acceptance and tolerance. When you do, these qualities exert a force on your surroundings that benefits everything and everyone.
Adapted from Reinventing The Body, Resurrecting The Soul, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2009).