In The Catherine Tate Show there is a character called Lauren, a teenage girl whose catchphrase is "Am I bovvered?", which means "Am I bothered?" I would imagine Catherine was inspired by watching teenagers; well, she was a teenager once. I've seen many teenagers who speak like Lauren.
I believe the real inspiration for "Am I bothered" is not from teenagers, but the sky.
The sky is not bothered about anything. So what if it's cloudy? What do I care whether people are nice or horrible? Am I bothered? Do I look bothered? Am I?
The sky represents the attributes of the one Self that we all are that are bliss, freedom and boundlessness. Our beliefs and dogmas are like the clouds that are constantly changing according to the social mores of the day. The clouds can't stop the sky being itself. It doesn't matter whether it's stormy, cloudy or the sun is shining, the sky is always the sky.
In the same respect, human beliefs can never change what Self is. It is the nature of Self to be bliss. Nothing can be added to or taken away from Bliss. Therefore,
whether I'm good or evil, Self remains the same,
whether I'm right or wrong, Self is still the same,
whether I'm in sickness or health, Self is unchanging,
whether I'm rich or poor, Self is bliss,
whether I'm alive or dead, Self is.
The sky is freedom. It allows the sun to use it as a canvas to paint pretty pictures on it during sunrise and sunset. Am I bothered? Do I look bothered?
Similarly, Self gives us the freedom to express ourselves even if this means being ignorant of our true nature; we're still giving the freedom to express who we are until we come to realise that our nature is also freedom. Then you can't help but allow others the freedom to be.
The sky is boundlessness. When you look up, you can't see where it begins or ends. It seems to go on forever.
In the same respect, Self is boundlessness. Self does not impose rules on anyone. Love, another attribute of Self, is boundlessness. Love has no beginning or end. You can love how you love without conditions or rules. Even if you have rules then that doesn't affect Self for its nature is bliss.
The other day I read an article in "The London Paper" from a gay writer about beauty. He said like most of us he'd been brought up to believe beauty is feminine. He said the first time he touched a woman's breasts he expected fireworks to go off but it just felt soft and they did nothing for him. (I wish I'd made a note of his exact words). He said a lot of women have been so conditioned to expect men to find them attractive and when they don't they either think the guys are repulsed or are scared. He has a point, of course. Why shouldn't all men find me attractive? I'm a woman, for crying out loud!
I consider myself heterosexual. Does this mean I've been conditioned to find men (some men) sexually attractive and not women? Perhaps. Put another way, I do have boundaries. While I like men, I have rules about who I will sleep with. I will not have sex with someone I'm not in a relationship with. That's why I've never had a one-night stand. That's just not for me. While I have rules about sex, I don't mind snogging a guy I've just met. I have kissed guys without having relationships with them. That's just me.
I will never impose my rules about sex on another. Live and let live is my motto. If people want to sleep around, let them. If people prefer people of the same sex, let them.
I guess one reason why I've been conditioned to be with men is because it programmes you to want to have kids. However, I have no such desire to have kids. It's not that I don't like babies or children, I certainly find them delightful; I've even worked with kids. I love how open young children are and how they can love unconditionally. For me, pregnancy and childbirth feel unnatural. Ideas are my babies. Writing is the equivalent of giving birth. You have the idea, which is already complete, and you give birth to it. You let it go into the world. Next!
Again, I wouldn't dream of imposing my views of childbirth on others. I have friend who have kids and I'm very happy for them. Let those who want to have kids have kids. Live and let live.
In a previous article called Abandon Ship versus Being Here Now, I discussed how instead of playing the game of "abandon ship" by going through life and death cycles, I would rather be here now. Now, let's look at this from another perspective. Do you think it matters to Self whether I keep shuttling backwards and forwards or live in the same body forever? Would it change my nature as bliss? Not bloody likely! Being here now is simply my rule; it doesn't make another wrong for doing the life/death cycle routine.
Sky represents the one Self that is in all. As Self I give everyone the freedom to be themselves just as I am free to be me. As Self I am bliss no matter what. As Self I am free to make up my own rules and I let others have their rules as long as they don't impose their rules on me.
Thank you sky for not being bothered.
Sky: Just to let you know, I'm not bothered either way.
EJ: That's charming, that is.
Sky: Am I bothered? Do I look bothered? Am I?
I am bliss, freedom and boundlessness; and I am not bothered.
Related articles: Perceptions; My Function; Self-Acceptance; Infinite Self; Unity Consciousness; Co-Creating with God; Giving Birth; The Problem with Judging By Appearances; The Clear View