Invisible strings tie all the puppets together, leaving none immune to the actions of the rest.
We fall in error when we assume we are independent and separate from the intimate and unseen influence of others. So too are others wrong to believe that they can escape the weight of our own. Every man is wrapped and coated by the subtle opinions that others have on him. The literal meaning of this is clear enough, where a man acts by inner tension and anxiety to make a particular impression on those in his midst. Yet this is an egocentric point of view and limits the extent of the idea in its full application. In fact, this type of influence is purely subjective and supposed, based and brewed often only out of fabricated imagination that has run amok in our heads.
There is a more objective implication of this idea which lies beneath the surface. Like our eyes which can only see the surface of objects, our psychology is also buffered in its understanding of the world of human relationships and affairs. It does not realize that its own opinions and assumptions, unexpressed and hidden from plain sight, nevertheless binds another person to act and behave in a certain way. Nor does he suspect that the inner sentiments of others upon his own character has an impact on how he thinks, feels and thus says and does. It is all too abstract and hypothetical to humour such ideas and yet the implications are startling if you follow them through.
Men lock each other up into prisons of expectations. They conflict with one another not only in the present, but also into the future, creating barriers for each other from changing into something which contradicts those paintings that we draw up with permanent ink. A man is seen and expected to be a joker, a clown and a nitwit who cannot be taken seriously. For all the hidden qualities and characteristics which this man has inside him, we fixate and focus on a limited range and wish to see nothing more. Our expectations are solid and made familiar so that the man in each next encounter will be witnessed with old eyes.
Imagine hundreds and thousands of strings connecting you to hundreds and thousands of other people, swaying you and swaying them, always in the directions of expectations. It is old accustomed eyes which make all of this a negative reality to behold. Once aware, a man can make an effort against the tide. He can begin to attempt to release others of the expectations he holds of them, and no matter the intentional credulity required, he will strive to look upon them with fresh eyes. He will go further; he will forsake passivity and actively look for the potential talents and gifts this person before him has within them and send a silent gesture of sincere support.
This is the practical aspect in releasing karma from the world, where a man restrains his tendency to litter more garbage onto the streets. An intention to forbid oneself of believing in their own assumptions of who other people are, when it is perfectly clear that they have no access to their inner dimension, will be an act of sanity. Slowly but surely little petty inner judgments will be challenged and reformed so that the energy behind them no longer roams around promoting strife and discord in one’s outer world. However much a struggle it is to create a clean slate for those who pass by us in our lives, there is nothing more important, or more practical, that we can do to improve conditions for both ourselves and them.