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05 October 2010 @ 11:17 am
Cultivate a Garden of Compassion  
Lately I have noticed a certain type of behavior that the Universe has been calling my attention to. It is the behavior of one trying to do "the right thing" or "doing what is best for others". "The road to Hell is paved with good intentions" as they saying goes & it is sooooo true. I know I am guilty of this, I have said to people many times in my life "you SHOULD do this" or "this WILL fix your problem". I look back on that & wonder at my audacity that I could assume I know what anyone "should" do besides myself. It's hard to look at that in ourselves, the usual defense is "well, I was just trying to help." But, are we REALLY trying to help when we do that? To help someone, REALLY help them, we must KNOW them. To know someone, you have to REALLY listen & if you really listen to someone, you might know what is best for them. But, we never really know what is best for anyone but ourselves, & to assume we know what is best for another person is really taking away their right to choose their own path.

I find this especially comes into play when I'm talking about my healing process. I've noticed that there is a kind of miracle that happens when someone who is sick finds their path to wellness & healing. We tend to attach ourselves to the "cure", whatever that is/was for us. We tend to preach that miracle to others, in the hopes of helping others find health & happiness like ourselves. I find it in every circle in my life, social & professional. Whether it be physical, mental, or emotional wellness, there are a lot of people who think they have THE CURE for what ails us.

This mindset has been rubbing me the wrong way lately, as proselytizing of dogma is by far one of the most difficult things for me to be tolerant of in my life. I notice it mostly when I am handed flyers for Christian groups on campus or PETA flyers warning me about animal abuse. But, it would be hypocritical of me to point the finger at the people who invade my space to fill me with unrequested information if I am doing it myself. So, I am not writing this blog to do that & it is the choice of my friends & colleagues to read this blog or not. I would not print it out & hand it to people on campus, that just sounds silly to me. But, it is exactly what so many people do.

I understand the desire to enlighten & educate the masses. But, the masses don't learn that way & they never have. People are only brainwashed that way. Teaching in this way closes doors to other, equally valid paths to the same goal. So, next time you feel the desire to tell someone else how they could be better before they have even asked you for your opinion, remember to be humble & open to their particular life path. As Buddha said, "There are many paths to enlightenment" & it is up to each of us to find our own. Non of us can develop into our highest potential without room to grow. Giving someone space to be themselves & validation that they are loved unconditionally is the greatest gift we can give another person. It is a well tended garden that yields the most crop, it would be silly to stand over the plants & tell them how they should grow, so why do we do this to the people we care about? Food for thought... ;)
I'm Feeling: mellowmellow
Background Noise: La Roux - Colorless Color
Clari Clyde: Icon: Easter Lilyclari_clyde on October 6th, 2010 07:08 pm (UTC)
Lately, I find myself playing more of a Devil’s Advocate role, trying to find the logical holes into what people believe. Things such as:

Liberal christians exist. Besides, Jesus said don’t wear your religion on your sleeve.

Animal testing happens because govts mandate it so beating on people for being “evil” does nothing to solve the problem.

And the recent LJ comments wank: Um, shouldn’t people not be afraid to assume their copyright?

And I realize I am being audacious. But, it’s also a reaction to the audaciousness of some people. Not always but usually, I find that having a strong logic to my reasons for doing what I do is the best way to be as forceful back to them. A jehovah’s witness gave up on me once she realized I’m not giving up the secular and religious holidays I already celebrate. ;-)