“……..purposefully direct loving kindness toward people you have a hard time with, toward those you dislike or are repulsed by, toward those who threaten you or hurt you.”
Jon Kabat-Zinn author of Wherever You Go There You Are
I find that very difficult to do sometimes. I understand the message. But when someone threatens me, is unfair to me, hurts me, I do not find it easy to forgive them nor can I happily turn the other cheek.
My being mean-spirited or hurtling back unkindness doesn’t help the situation one bit. I know that, as do you. However, defending myself, shutting them out of my life, thinking an eye for an eye, does cloud my better self from clear kind thinking. I am sorry that is true. I am practicing doing better.
How is that going for me? Fair to middlin’ I’d say.
It is second nature to defend oneself against attack, perceived or intended. But what I know, no doubt at all, is that attacking back only escalates any grievous situation. When I take a breath, step back away from myself, and think……I can relax enough to listen and keep myself from retaliating. If I don’t dance, there is no dance. Same with a fight. If I choose to listen and refuse to quarrel the fraught energy will lessen and both of us, all of us if there are many, can come out saving face.
That is what happens often times: we get ashamed to think we may have been wrong and we try to explain or defend and forget to listen.
Practice listening. Just hear what someone, your beloved, your child, your neighbor, politicians, have to say and leave it there for awhile. A sensible response may come later. Getting into the fray won’t solve a thing.
As always, take time to breathe and take time for being with yourself. Inside you are all your truths. Stay true to you in a kind and compassionate way.
- I am grateful for the many kindnesses I have received over my life time
- I am grateful for the generosity of dear friends and family
- I am grateful for all the help I receive again and again in making my life so doable
- I am grateful the soup I just made turned out to taste wonderful
- I am grateful Valerie, the woman who stayed with me for a year after Clo died, will be here with me for dinner and the night.
- I am grateful for my life
Love always, Nancy