Day 17 / Forgiveness and "Others"
Sometimes this book seems to be repetitively specific, while sometimes it goes a bit wildly in the other direction. "Others"? Others can apparently mean strangers, acquaintances, friends, co-workers, you name it. I think this is a bit too broad to work on all at once. So I'm going to segment this out.
Today I'll work on strangers. Probably has something to do with this CraigsList guy who is upset with me.
It's intriguing to me that I can feel hurt by strangers. With all the actual concerns in the world, and the real care I have for how I impact family and close friends, surely I can't reasonably be concerned about how every stranger out there interacts with me. Maybe their mother just passed away. Maybe their tooth is broken and they're in pain. Maybe they grew up abused and unloved and now this is how they see the world.
I certainly can't change strangers. They are on their own path and hopefully they will eventually find a place of greater peace and joy.
Also, if someone is a volcano, it doesn't make sense for me to take responsibility for that. I can't take responsibility for being unable to cap it. If they haven't been able to do it themselves during the years of their life, and their family and friends have been unable to help, then it is foolhardy for me to expect to do better.
I think I sometimes want to save every hurt puppy - but we just can't. We all only have 24 hours, and X energy. I absolutely want to be kind to strangers. I want to present a serene point of contact for them. My energy should be positive.
That said, if a stranger is in a position where they are hostile and unhappy, I also need to let them continue on their path. It could be that the very thing they need right now is time alone, to uncoil.
Lisa Shea, Owner