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forgiveness

Things Usually Are the Most Productive When They Are Painful

Does Anger Bring Out The "Devil" In You Or Does Fear of Change Bring Out the "Devil" in You

Does Anger Bring Out The “Devil” In You Or Does Fear of Change Bring Out the “Devil” in You

Progress in my life has often been scary and painful and I often did not work on solving problems because I didn’t want to face the pain involved.  This is especially true in interpersonal situations.  Do you think that the most progress is made when something is easy to do?  Be honest with yourself….

Progress can not always be assured even when we face something painful and that is potentially painful too.  Could we learn something?  This is something that could realistically happen.  Learning can be painful too especially when you have to give up all or part of a long-held belief system.

When confronted with new conflicting information about a belief that a person has long held, people can either reject the new information in some way or change it so it fits their paradigm.  The other option is to change their belief system to fit the new information.  This is what learning is all about.

Some people are not really looking for conflicting information as it makes them uncomfortable so they back away from confrontations.  They think there always has to be a winner or a loser in a disagreement and they are programmed not to lose because it hurts too.  Compromise is sometimes a new thing to some people because of this.

When people come to new understandings about things, they can both be winners.  They understand each other better and can anticipate making better decisions without out so much potential “flack” from the other partner.

Conversation Stopper: People Are Rude Because Other People Are Too Polite To Call Them On It

Arp_300px-Kohlberg_moral_stages_vop.gifre some people rude and obnoxious because they count on other people to be polite?  Also do some people lie because other people won’t correct them for fear of being rude themselves?  Some people say hurtful and insulting things because they don’t expect other people to call them on it.  They will also tell lies because other people will often give them the benefit of the doubt or don’t want to start an argument.

What is often true is that the other person is uncouth and often cruel because they can get away with it.  It is sometimes even extremely obvious that they are doing this but they think that no one will say anything and they usually don’t.  Doing so often accounts for a period of stunned silence from the audience members with it being so quiet you could hear a pin drop.

For example, I once entered the room where a large family gathering was already going on and rp_300px-Determinants_of_Forgiveness_Graphic.JPGeverybody looked to see who was coming in.  The rude person in a loud voice asked, “Who cut your hair?”  It was obvious that person was being critical of the way I looked.  It had already been a long day for me and I replied, “Well, who asked you?” in front of the whole group.  This was met by stunned silence not just at the initial comment that had been made but at my reply.  I felt it had been very appropriate considering that this person made a game of doing such things.

rp_7510823738_6616ac3a63_m.jpgSometimes the only way you can handle such comments is by being rude, obnoxious, and impolite in return.  Such cruel people love to embarrass people and often do this when they have a crowd for an audience.  People who are crude this way often may unconsciously worry that they might have the same problem that they are pointing out in somebody else but we usually don’t call them on it.

Forgive, Forget, Let Go…

rp_Anxiety.gifForgive, forget, let go….   Taking things another step further….   If you feel that you have to forgive someone in order to let go, you might really never let go.  Could it be possible that there is nothing to forgive and the very act of forgiveness is standing in the way of getting on with your life?

I had a very nasty? teacher once.  He would rap your knuckles with a ruler if you did something that he thought deserved it.  Altogether it was a very frustrating experience and I cried many tears over our encounters.  I had just started grade school and he was a music director who got stuck teaching elementary school kids along with his other duties  as organist and choir director.  He was very temperamental as sometimes musicians and other artists are.  Teaching was probably very frustrating for him and it probably kept him from spending all his time doing what he really desired to do.  He made my life  miserable and my cousin who was also in the same class room said that he picked on me when he could have left me alone.  I admit I was a challenging child, a quick learner with a lot of creative ideas.  It was difficult to keep me busy and I questioned his authority frequently.

For a long time I could not see this situation from his point of view.  I had a very unhappy time while he was my teacher (He wasn’t the only teacher that I had that I had trouble with in elementary school.)  The point was that in my school we had almost all male teachers and I don’t think any of them thought that teaching elementary school children was their life’s work like it was for women at that time.  I had one good year i elementary school, the year I had a woman teacher.

Altogether it was an unfortunate experience and it did not help my self-esteem.  My parents were also very frustrated with me being called to the office so often and their having had to come to school to talk about my behavior with my teacher or the principal.

Altogether it was a very frustrating experience for everyone.  Now who should be forgiven, the teacher, my parents, myself?  Sometimes saying that something has to be forgiven suggests malice aforethought.  Weren’t we all doing the best we thought we could.  I no longer see myself as a “bad” disobedient child, misunderstood maybe, but not bad.  Did I have a “bad” teacher or did he do the best he could in the circumstances?

Was this teacher taking his anger out on the children in the class by expecting too much of them.  Was he angry because he was being forced to teach when he would rather have been only in charge of  music?  My parents at that time like many parents in that era worried more about what other people would think and felt that children should be taught to respect their elders no matter what they were like.rp_8619481133_df8a85fccf_m.jpg

Now that I can see more of the picture should I continue the anger and frustration by thinking that I have to forgive my elders for what they did to me when I was a child or should I let go with the understanding that they were only people that didn’t know better.  To me forgiveness can require a lot of time and energy and it has the flavor of  something that I must do for my own and others’  good.  Letting go does not suggest that what they and what I did were right but that there was a lot of misunderstanding and confusion involved.  Also to some extend, I was more concerned about what happened to my brother and cousin when they were in this teacher’s class with me.  It is always more frightening to see somebody else get hurt when you are not them and don’t know how badly they might be suffering when you already know how painful it has been for you in the situation.

Hatred, anger when attached to letting go makes it a greater burden than it has to be.  What might remain a burden for the “offender” to deal with no longer becomes one for you.  The biggest satisfaction an offender might have is not doing the dastardly deed but the fact that the victims have to deal and live with the consequences forever.  When it comes to this, the victim has to let go as the offender no longer has them in his or her grasp.  I realized a couple of years that after my divorce many years ago, that I was still cogitating over how my ex had treated me towards the end of our marriage and how unhappy I was. and that he may have gone on merrily without me and started his life over forgetting I ever existed.

If you come from the northern  part of this country, you may know about mosquitoes and how badly their bites itch and how you can create even bigger sores and create more irritation by scratching them,  People who get them often feel they are helpless and can’t leave them alone.  Often the next step is that you stop going outside in mosquito season and wound up being cooped up inside in the house during the hottest part of  summer without air conditioning.  Wouldn’t it been wonderful if you could have avoided that?  You can avoid something similar by letting go of old past hurts.

Don’t regurgitate, don’t do what cows do and chew your cud again and again.  Yes, learn from your past experiences but don’t let them monopolize the present or scar the future.  Sometimes you don’t have to forgive you just need to let go and take what the future brings an opportunity to do something different and new.

rp_Cult_and_Ritual_Abuse.jpgCAUTION;  A HISTORY OF SEVERE PHYSICAL AND SEXUAL ABUSE AND SOMETIMES EVEN SEVERE MENTAL ABUSE REQUIRES PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENT AND SHOULD NOT BE HANDLED ON ONE’S OWN.  Abuse can also happen when you are an adult.  Also do not let the abuser dictate how you handle the abuse.

 

 

Adoption Of Slavery Eats At The Soul

Whenever man chooses to use some form of slavery to amass a fortune and gain power over others, he loses his soul.  In order to do this a person has to lie to himself, herself, or others to do this.  The most unfortunate thing is when a person lies to him or her self about what he or she is doing and comes to believe it.   The worst person to lie to is oneself.rp_300px-Accounting_bruce.jpgOne lie leads to another.  Watch the movie, 12 Years A Slave.  The plantation owner’s wife was led to deceive so she could keep her husband and plantation.  The plantation owner deceived himself and how he treated his mistress who was one of his slaves.  The slave herself lied to the plantation owner and those who lived on the plantation about her feelings about being forced to be his mistress.  The other slaves and the plantation owner’s wife didn’t know that the mistress was doing this against her will and she endured cruelty from the plantation owner’s wife, other slaves, and as well as the plantation owner himself.

What a life we live when first we practice to deceive.  Does the end justify the means?  How often do you lie to yourself or others in order to not feel guilty or shamed about something.  Especially if we are vulnerable to the judgment of others.  Rationalizing is giving a “good” reason for doing something that others will accept without criticism.  It also could be said that someone was justifying something they did.rp_Truman_pass-the-buck.jpg

Confession is good for the soul.  The place to start is with your own conscience.  Examine yourself.  Are you telling any lies of omission and/or co-mission.  Remember only a fool believes his or her own lies and lets them becomes his or her reality.  If you believe you can’t for give yourself for something you did or said, it is more likely that you can’t reveal  that you have been rationalization and justifying these things to others and yourself.  Your justifications and rationalizations you do reveal even to yourself what they really are lies.

Do you conveniently forget stuff you have done that makes you uncomfortable?  Do you tell a “made up” reason for doing something so frequently in order to be more comfortable, that you have forgotten the real reason.rp_300px-Boy_and_girl_from_Mauritius.jpg

As adults we often find it easy to bamboozle our  children and get them to believing something that is not true.  Then we laugh at how they react.  Sometimes they even cry.  Yes, it is easy to lie to children or to others who don’t know what we know; but should we.  Taking their innocence away from children is stealing using lies and deceit.  Children are not called “innocent” for nothing.

Charlatans and psychopaths know when they are lying, but they don’t care if they are telling the truth or not.  Do you?  Get something the “right” way or don’t get it at all.  When you lie, you lose everyone’s respect including your own.

Love Will Keep It Together

rp_8619481133_df8a85fccf_m.jpgI  felt compelled to publish this although this was still in the draft stage.  I am completing the  proofing now.

Love will keep it together.  It often doesn’t make sense to people; but it works.  We have all probably heard, “Turn the other cheek.”  How it works is sometimes hard to understand.  Does it work because it keeps you in a better mood;  and therefore, others  treat you better too?

There is something I will call ambiguous hostility for the purpose of this discussion.  It is the tendency to take something that was not meant in a bad way and turn it into a hostile gesture.  It is the proverbial chip on the shoulder.  If it is possible to take something in the wrong way, the person with this hostility problem will do it.

People have more control over their emotions than they often think they do.   “I can’t help it,” they say, “He or she made me mad.”  First does that person’s opinion really count?  Second did that person do this to manipulate you in any way?  Do you want to be manipulated and turn over control of yourself to him or her?

Practice relaxation and/or meditation.  Don’t just think peace or love, be peace or love.   Research has demonstrated that this works.  Crime went down in a community when a large group of people not only prayed for peace, but they visualized it and became peaceful as well.  What next?

At the doctor’s office the other day, I was early and I was the only person in the waiting room.  The office staff commented on how peaceful it was.  It was and it felt good.  On the other hand, I was there when a child was screaming and acting up.  His parents wouldn’t or couldn’t control him.  I almost walked out and I am usually very tolerant and accepting of children’s behavior.  The atmosphere in the waiting room was entirely different.life is a mirror

You can make bad things worse.  Often I have often been caught in a check out line where the customer who is in the middle of being checked out has a problem and the people in line like me have to wait until management fixes it.  Especially if I have no reason to hurry things up ( like another appointment, somebody waiting on me to show up) shouldn’t I be patient and maybe lighten things up with a little humor?

Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me; let me walk with my brother in perfect harmony.  Let it start here.  So often we wait for it to start there like in the middle east.

 

 

 

The Most Dangerous Words: I Love You.

 

Three simple words, “I love you,” but very dangerous.  Can a boyfriend say this to a girlfriend or vice versa?  What if he or she doesn’t say it back?

 

Jesus said, “Love your enemies.”  This can be done silently or out loud.   Love is the match for hate.  Remember your enemies will have a long hard row to hoe someday.  God reminds us of this.

 

Enemies, a Love Story

Enemies, a Love Story (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

I am not the judge of someone else.  I don’t know what God knows or the other person knows so how could I know is right for them.

 

I try to keep my temper; but sometimes emotions comes first before rational thought.  Remember this is not the part of the brain that is fully developed in teenagers, young adults, and some adults.

 

Act without thinking, repent at leisure.  How can it hurt to say I love you (even if only in your head) and go on without behaving rashly or expressing an emotion that can hurt others?

I was the cause? of some road rage yesterday.  I drove through the drive way used to pick up and drop off college students; and I guess I cut off another car that was pulling out after picking someone up or letting someone off.  That car followed me downtown and passed me by going into the oncoming traffic lane.   I had already forgot about the incident until I recognized the car.

 

Positive thinking is where it is at.  I don’t get anywhere fast; I do some things slowly and I guess incur the rage of some other drivers.  (Don’t worry I have a lead foot sometimes when I am out on the highway whether or not I am in a hurry.)   Usually I look for the beauty in things and people I see around me.  I also look for ways to help people and look out for people.  Occassionally I give a cautious compliment based on what I observe..

 

 

 

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First You must Be Able To Forgive Yourself Before You Can Forgive Someone Else

God Wants Me To Forgive Them!?! DVD Cover

God Wants Me To Forgive Them!?! DVD Cover (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

You must be able to forgive yourself before you can forgive someone else.  How can you conceive of the need to forgive somebody else when you can’t conceive of needing it yourself or worse yet being able to offer it to others.  You have to know and understand that all of us have done some things for which we need to be forgiven and it may be easier to offer it to others than it is to offer it to ourselves.  Are you hard on yourself and while you may not be the Holiest person in the world, might you not be capable of having the title of being the most unforgiveable person in the world.  How self-sacrificing to offer to someone else what you, yourself, feel that you don’t deserve.  Then and only then can you relate to the need to forgive someone else.  When it comes to forgiveness, we all need it and realizing that we ourselves need it, we realize what it means to extend that to someone else besides ourselves.

Now there is another side to the story.  Some people feel very good about offering forgiveness to others when they think that they don’t need it themselves.  It can come from a “holier than thou” attitude.  These people can’t conceive of the need to forgive themselves even though they are happy to offer it to others.  Doing this shows how much better off they are than the other people whom they need to forgive.  “Who me?”  “I don’t need to forgive myself.  The fact that I can forgive others proves that I don’t need to be forgiven myself.”

The point to this story is that we need to be able to do both, focus on things we need to forgive ourselves for and things we need to forgive others for.  The best example of this perplexing problem is someone who has been physically or sexually abused as a child and this leads to them to doing this to children themselves.  Maybe you have not done this but you have made foolish possibly even egregous mistakes in the past which might have even caused a tragedy.  If we can’t accept responsibility for what we did and then forgive ourselves, this will stand in the way of truly being able to forgive someone else for what they have done to us.

 

Forgiveness

Forgiveness (Photo credit: Celestine Chua)

No one is perfect or we wouldn’t be here.  Whether you believe in original sin or not.

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Spread A Little Joy

Customer Service center at 23d Street downtown...

Customer Service center at 23d Street downtown terminal (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Customer Service can make or break a business as it can make or break a customer’s day.  I’ve recently made the point that I can be a grump.  One of my frequently used sayings is, “Sometimes, my patience, is tried.”

Sometimes I do not realize until too late that this is happening and I sometimes erupt embrassng myself.  Like the time I shook my fist in the third trip through the drive through getting a prescription filled after surgery (which I mentioned in my blog last week) or when I said, s–t! in front of the grandchildren.  It is hard to control yourself sometimes when you have reached your limit.

Today , I assigned myself the job of contacting the customer service departments of three businesses and like the rural salesman seeking a tire jack from a “grouchy” farmer in my favorite joke who says, “You can keep your God Damn jack!” when the farmer opens his door., I was ready to explode and had even had several conversations with the various businesses in my head before calling them.

After a couple of frustrating attempts to reach the various customer service departments, I made my connections and had a pleasant conversation with all three and resolved my issues satisfactorily.  I felt so good that I sat down to write this post afterwards.  Even though my first assumptions were that the conversations would turn out badly, I didn’t let that color my initial  conversations with them.  The more cheerful I was the more cheerful they were.  So spread a little joy this season or anytime.  “Please” and “Thank you don’t hurt” and don’t be rude if you can help it.spreadthejoyimages

A week ago at the phramacy drive though, I was in a nasty mood; but when I tried to resolve the issue over the phone talking to different pharamacies, I changed my tone of voice and let my mad fit go.  Sometimes things are not fair; but you don’t have to let them get to you and ruin your day as well as someone else’s day (whose fault, it might not have been initially).  Some businesses’s customer service departments are so nice that I think I could call them up to help myself feel better when I am down.

This leads to the final thing I want to say and that is the list of businesses, local, online, or national, that I recommend usually depends on how they treat me when I contact them.  I hope these businesses would also recommend me as a customer because of how I treat them.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

 

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Making Your Way Out Of The Swamp Of Denial

swampimages

Making your way out of the swamp of denial or helping someone make his or her way out of the swamp of denial may have many causalities, yourself included.  Too many people do not want to pay the price; but they have to pay the piper eventually.  Seniors may put off making the adjustments they need to make in their chosen lifestyle as they get older and need more help.  They are often not willing to face the consequences and often have put it off for way to long and it doesn’t get easier, it just gets harder and harder to do.  Not taking personal responsibility for some of their life decisions as not working is something that gets in the way.  They can get angry and because of their denial they take it out on the very people they need.

Denial is not conducive to rational thinking or to making an objective assessment of the consequences of choices people in denial might make is close to impossible.  Seniors, especially, may have always thought, “I don’t want to think about that yet.  It couldn’t happen to me.  I like things just the way they are.”  Honor thy father and mother is the commandment which gets harder and harder to obey.  In fact these people may drive away the very people they need.

Now Is The Time That....

Now Is The Time That….

Such people in denial (like some seniors) often have had a position of status quo that was comfortable for them and which they never had to compromise.  It is hard for these people to make the necessary adjustments when they never wanted to or had to before.  At the same time their off spring or local support group runs out of patience with them because some seniors who are in denial won’t accept the help  they have to offer and these seniors even get (sometimes) hateful with them.

God Bless you (friends and family) you may be in for a hard ride with no thanks or gratitude or cooperation for your effort.  The problem may be impossible to solve if the person who needs to change is in the state of denial and stays there.  You might even think you are going crazy.  You say to yourself,”This can’t be real.”  You think that no one would deny something like that when the handwriting is clearly on the wall.

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Guilt Holding You Back Or Making Things Worse?

Do you continually do things that you know deep down are wrong, but you can’t stop doing them because some part of you says that if you change your behavior you are admitting that you did something wrong in the first place?  Take teasing for example, do you go on teasing somebody even after it is obvious that it makes them uncomfortable or even emotionally upset.  Saying things to yourself like, “They shouldn’t be such a baby about things like that”, “They need to grow up:  “It toughens them up”,  “They should be able to take things like that in stride.”  “It was just a joke”  They took it too seriously”  Doing things like that indicates a disrespect of others and deep down the person who does this doesn’t want to admit that they are wrong and thus in

Myllissa-Oscar the tabby cat teasing a baby-01

Myllissa-Oscar the tabby cat teasing a baby-01 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

sensitive.  Have you ever gone to far in pulling a joke or teasing somebody because even though you knew it was hurting them because you didn’t want to seem like a jackass?  Are your feelings more important than those of the person you are teasing.  We have all been guilty of that; I have.  I once told a girl in front of some other girls that she looked like Bozo the Clown.  Insensitive?  Yes!  Reflecting my own insecurities?  True!  At the time, I couldn’t see why it wasn’t funny.  My only excuse is that I was only about ten years old at the time.

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