Especially after meditation, I gain this peace and happiness that I take throughout the day. However, that beautiful peace is suddenly zapped away whenever I am around my family members. They have a very negative aura that latches onto me and I just can't shake it. Is there any way to protect my peace while being open and sharing it with everyone?
—Paige , USA
What you are experiencing is quite common. The key to overcoming this lies in many areas within yourself, so you have the ability to change this into a positive experience. The family unit can be tricky. Yogananda said that we incarnate into family units so that we can “fight it out in close quarters.”
You have expectations of your family, and your reactive process, due to your history with them, gets engaged when you’re in their presence. Can you be entirely accepting of them each as inidividuals and not need them to be different than they are? You can’t change them, but you can change your response to them. I would assume that you could be in the company of a complete stranger, who may be negative or not, and you won’t react to them, you would probably cut them more slack. This is because we have expectations of the people who are close to us – our love is conditional, and rarely do they rise to meet our expectations, because we are all swimming in imperfection. Those expectations create disappointment when our nearest and dearest fall short of them.
Another thought about your last sentence. “. . . being open and sharing it (your peace) with them.” How do you share this peace? Do you try to influence them by advising that they be different than they are, or give any sort of advise? If so, they’re probably a little irritated with you! The best way to share your peace is to merely be peaceful, calm, loving, accepting. If they don’t think you’re trying to make them be different than they are, even in your thoughts, they will start to notice the difference in you. If these qualities are strong in you they may even ask you how you have acheived it. People change when they seek to be diffferent and each person has to come to the conclusion, in their own time, that they want this change. Even if they ask you, tell them what has worked for you and leave it at that, with perhaps an enticer such as, “and I’m so much happier and can take the ups and downs of life so much better, ” rather than, “well, you should . . .” No one changes by someone else telling them what they ought to do.
After all of this, make sure that you’re Energizing. This strengthens your aura and then other’s can’t affect you so much.
Many blessings. Stay strong in yourself, love others unconditionally, with no expectations of them, focus on their good points and see them in that light, instead of their weaknesses. Treat them as you would be treated yourself. You’ll find much more peace in yourself, and your happiness and bliss will increase.