Flowers

Flowers are beautiful as they are when we find them- the way nature and fate have caused them to spring up and blossom.

If I try to reshape the flower, pushing and pulling it, hovering over it every day and blocking the vital light that it needs, it will die.

People are like this.

Doers, Un-Doers, and Non-Doers

I was part of a conversation recently about how different people deal with conflict and perceived wrongs. One of my neighbors described himself as a ‘doer’- someone who would argue a point aggressively to save face, and become violent when pressed. He said that he would argue a point even if he were wrong in order to avoid being pushed around or looked upon as weak.

My ‘doer’ neighbor then went on to describe myself and the other gentleman present as ‘talkers’ who used words to assert and defend ourselves, and always tried to make sure we had the moral high ground. While the other gentleman agreed to my neighbor’s assessment, I remained quiet and thought about this.  Continue reading

Expectations Block Love

I have been thinking about love some more the last few days. I have been looking at the differences between the love I described in my last post (the love I have for my child in the first couple years of their life) and the love I have for an adult. The difference is that one is selfless, the other is tainted by the Self. Continue reading

Gratitude

Today I am grateful for my past. It has brought me to this day, with these values, this understanding, and all these drives… It has made me who I am.

Without everything in my past, I would not realize this day that I need to really forgive my bigot neighbor. I would hold onto this low-level resentment and either deny it exists or justify it. Allowing someone else to exist near me, without abusing them in some way, is not forgiveness. Forgiveness, to me, means not allowing someone else’s behavior to effect my treatment of them. 

I was being helpful at first, to stay true to me, but I slowly allowed my bigoted neighbor to drift away. It was easier than summoning the strength to push through my hurt and anger. Now we pass each other without a word or a glance.

There is an anxiety building inside me daily to alert me that I am not being the person I want to be. That alarm wouldn’t be going off if I hadn’t learned everything that life has brought me to learn, or experienced being that unwanted person at some point in my past. I am grateful for all my experiences, good and bad, that create in me a desire to do good to the ‘bad’ today.

When I see my bigoted neighbor, whom I will now refer to simply as ‘neighbor’, I will ask him how things are going, what’s new, and offer him a coffee. I will invite him into my home, and play host as I enjoy doing with everyone else. I will treat him as friend, like I’d want to be treated despite what other people saw as flaws in me.

ghandi-quote-on-forgiveness

Living in the Moment

Yesterday’s baggage is just that- yesterday’s. I will not allow the baggage of yesterday to hold me back today, and I will use my day today to create for myself a better tomorrow.

The persecution and violence I experienced yesterday (speaking of a real world situation) will be answered with kindness and help today. I will learn to tolerate their intolerance, to love them in spite of their hate for me.