The Admiration Trap

Excerpt from Finding Your Soul in the Spirituality Maze


Many New Age people repeatedly trap themselves with admiration. I estimate that over 90% of the admiration that people express is a trap. Dictionary synonyms for admire are revealing: venerate, idolize and wonder carry obvious feelings of infatuation and being lower down than the person being admired. Other synonyms like respect, esteem and regard are also often expressed in tones of veneration. It is the inferior positions and the childlike positions that reinforce our adaptive personalities and trap us. If you want what you are admiring for yourself, then you are most likely trapped. If there is any envy attached, you are trapped. This whole process may be subtle and not easy to recognize.

Personal Admiration Example. Recently I attended a Hay House conference. Louise Hay gave a short presentation about her current paths and ideas. Among other things, she talked about how she finds herself in her eighties getting physically healthier, still on a lifelong path of transformation, and expecting that her happiest decade yet will be her current decade. As she left the stage, the audience and I rose to our feet applauding. In that moment, I felt great appreciation for her life work, her courage, her perseverance and her ongoing commitment to helping transform both herself and others even into her eighties. I recognized some of the significant value of her lifetime contributions, value far in excess of my own efforts in terms of helping and healing others. But I did not feel veneration or wonder or marvel for Louise, just love and appreciation. I did not trap myself in a gluey form of admiration.

To find out if you are trapped in admiration is not necessarily easy. I suggest that you pay attention to your tone of voice when you express admiration. Does your tone of voice indicate that you are venerating? Or, are you evaluating? Veneration = trap. Evaluating = clear-seeing.

Book Excerpts

Real Love, Infatuation, & Conditional Love
Admiration Trap
"Sacred" Meditation Trap
Empty Mind Meditation
Is Your Meditation Valuable?
Attachment and Non-Attachment
The Path of Non-Attachment

© 2008 by Thayer White