Category: Compassion

Spread Some Joy Today > Compassion

Turning From Prejudice Toward Love

From the web:
“As a noun, pre-justice is a preconceived opinion
that is not based on reason or actual experience.
As a verb, pre-justice is defined
as to give rise to prejudice; make biased.”

[New post]

My father died in an accident at age 36 a couple of days before his 37th birthday. I was 13 when he died. I was born in 1949 and he was 22 and my mom was 18. I was the eldest of three from that marriage which ended when I was five years old, my sister was three, and my little brother was only one. My parents were mid-western stock from Iowa and I was born in Iowa until we moved to southern California when I was two. My father was easily angered and quite prejudiced. I grew up early in a judgmental environment. As time went on, I heard more of that. My mother remarried and nothing changed as far as the prejudging of people, things, events were concerned. I got plenty of it from my mother as well, along with friends from school, neighbors, and more. It was normal to be prejudiced. It felt like we were supposed to judge others, their behavior, how they lived, and so much more.

The television promoted prejudice. It always has. It still does today. I began watching television in the early 1950’s. Long before color TV became a reality, television was colored with prejudice. Perhaps I should say lack of color. Movies showed it vividly. The schools I went to promoted prejudice in many ways, through choices of textbooks and who was allowed in, controlling teachers and curriculum to name a few.

I grew up in a white-dominated world. I heard so many words to describe those who weren’t white and even one group who was white but so far below standard as to be called trash. The N-word, the J-word, the other J-word, the C-word, the S-word, the other S-word, the I-word, along with all the color words that began with Y, R, B, the other B. Next, they were nationalized in groups based on where they lived now or where they were from or their lineage was from. Some were Mexican, Asian, Italian, German, African, South American, Icelandic, Pacific Islanders, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and many more.

Indeed, we have so many ways to segregate each other into compartments and categories dehumanizing the world. Even the word people has us and them and they. All of this doesn’t even address the various languages that are spoken, the religions we’ve created and fight about, the foods we eat, lifestyles, and so much more. All of this is easily a place to stand in prejudgment.

Of course, this is not news. It is normal. It is only called normal because it has become habitual and it only became habitual by repetition and it all came from somewhere to get inside of each of us. We learned it. It does not come naturally. It is taught, shared, preached, legislated, from our parents, other family, peers, friends, schools, churches, leaders, government rules and laws, and more. And, it cannot be different until we each decide to be different, to let go of those teachings, to see something more, to change, to grow. Based on this, it will never change outside of us. It can only change within us. The outside world that we think we see is but a reflection. We choose to love or we choose fear. Prejudice in all its forms is simply fear. So when I hear someone spouting nonsense about a group or a country, or idea, I see it for what it is. It is a fearful person sharing their fears. Many will share it openly. Rather than push against them, acceptance is the way toward love. Pushing against anything is expanding fear.

We’ve had such volumes and constant repetitions of prejudicial points of view brought into our lives that to release this and become prejudice-free is a real challenge. However, just like walking five miles is taking the first step and then another and another, releasing our learned fears and turning toward love is releasing some here, some there, again, and over again. We have such a tendency as people to focus on the destination when it is the journey that is life itself. We are all and always a work in progress. All we need first is to become aware. Then choose differently. Seeing how fear rules our lives is enlightening, and we always have had and always will have the power to turn toward love and drop the rope of fear. In so doing, we create the world in which we want to live. It doesn’t matter who or how many may follow our lead. Our own choice and actions are all that matter. Allowing the world to be whatever it is serves us. Allowing all others to think and act in whatever way they think is best for them is empowering for us.

My past is what it was at a different now. I get to choose every second of every day. I choose to release prejudice and have been on this beautifully unfolding journey for many years now. It is a joyous journey of constantly seeing contrast and then pivoting toward love. Love is my home base now. I am home. I am love.

Respecting Other’s Skills And Expertise

“By respect for life, we become religious 
in a way that is elementary, profound, and alive.” 
 
— Albert Schweitzer 
 

[Classic post from 1-3-16]

Yesterday I was thinking about how in the doing of something, it becomes easy to appreciate those that have done that thing, including those who may do it much better. As an author, I very easily now appreciate other authors and what they do to produce a work. Having gone through my own process to produce a work, I have at least a fundamental understanding of it, which leads me to appreciate even much more complex processes the other authors were required to do to create their works. Some even take years of research before writing a sentence.

Lately, I’ve thought about songwriters in the same way. Having written a number of songs, I understand better. Some come fast and very easy, but that is pretty rare. The rest you wrestle to the ground, but the biggest appreciation I have for other songwriters is their commitment to staying with it and growing in that.

A long time ago, I was a journeyman-level auto mechanic. If nothing else came of my efforts in this area, one thing is very clear: I so appreciate a good mechanic, and especially a good diagnostic mechanic.

For the biggest portion of time in my life, I was a sales manager. In studying that field and performing in that, I can truly appreciate a good sales manager, and as well a good salesperson.

I’ve studied cooking to a certain degree and even considered being a chef in the early days, but the best thing I got out of cooking was appreciating a really good cook.

Reading has opened up a vast world of appreciation for me especially for people in many areas of life that I have read of from presidents to inventors to business tycoons to sailing ship captains, and much more. To know where they started and where they traveled was to be amazed. Conrad Hilton, Henry Ford, Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Carnegie, and the list goes on and on. Each opened a whole new world of appreciation.

It is also the simple things that we do like vacuuming, cleaning, washing clothes, folding clothes, gardening, shrub and tree trimming to name a few that I have done and do not care for or attain a skill level of, and yet I can appreciate someone who does those things well, and especially someone who enjoys doing them well.

We’ve all done so many things in our lives and I expect that you too find appreciation in those who have done those things too. You may also, as I do, appreciate those who excel at things we’ve done, yet whether they excel or do a thing poorly, we have a better understanding of how that happens too. We can relate. We can appreciate. And, we can do those things without actually experiencing doing a thing.

We can appreciate anything we look at when we allow ourselves to do that. If I were teaching a child at the earliest age, or anyone at any age, I would need only say this: Learn to appreciate. Developing that will lead to a very happy journey and a delightful life.

I Also Appreciate My Own Readers. Some Of You Have Been Reading These For Many Years. I Appreciate Your Generosity! Thank you! 

Spread Some Joy Today–by finding appreciation. It’s the same vibration as joy.

Love IS Forgiveness

“Then Peter came and said to Him, 
“Lord, how often 
shall my brother sin against me 
and I forgive him? 
Up to seven times?” 
 
Jesus said to him, 
“I do not say to you, 
up to seven times, 
but up to seventy times seven.”” 
 
— The Bible,
Matthew 18:21,22, NAS 
 

[Classic post from 1-24-16]

Seventy times seven would be 490 times, but I think the point here is not a number, but always.

From the first time I read or heard that passage, I've taken it to heart. That doesn't mean that I haven't been in Peter's position, but that I haven't forgotten the lesson that this wonderful passage contains. 

Whether it is a debt or some other grievance that has caused conflict with another, how many times should we forgive them? Seventy times seven.

There is often confusion about forgiveness. The word indicates that we are releasing the other and giving them relief from the debt, or the transgression. That would be like Peter saying, “I hate this that happened by the poor dealing of another to me, and I don't want to forgive them, but you teach forgiveness, Lord, and I want to learn. I am willing to forgive them. How many times do I have to forgive such things? Did you say up to seven?”

Then, it is like the Lord saying, “No Peter. Not seven times. This isn't about them. It is about you. Forgiveness isn't letting them go free, it is about letting yourself free from the burden of carrying that weight with you affecting everything that you think and do. That's why I say, not seven, but seventy times seven. When you pay attention to your own feelings, you will know what feels right and what feels wrong. You will notice the tension and the resistance, and the joy. I want you to have joy. That is the purpose of forgiveness. It is to release you to experience more joy and to lighten any burdens that you have accumulated. Let go of it. Love your brothers. Love your so-called enemies. Love is the most powerful force in the heavens, and when you love yourself enough to let go of the hurt, you then can let go of the blame of the other, and allow love to fill all that space.”

Love Is Forgiveness. Love Is Kind. Love Is… 

Spread Some Joy Today–by releasing any of those accumulated hurts and so-called failings. Drop the rope. Just let go of it. Feel the relief in that. That is the path to joy.

I Am Already Complete

“We must be our own 
before we can be another's.”
 
— Ralph Waldo Emerson 
 

[Classic post from 1-18-16]

There are a lot of ways so many give their power away. One that is so predominant in our world has to do with the conditional loving of romantic relationships. Who hasn't heard the very famous line from the movie, Jerry Maguire: “You complete me.” And songs. . . wow, thousands of songs about this subject, like the classic, All Out of Love by Air Supply. You know, “I'm all out of love, I'm so lost without you. . . I'm all out of love, what am I without you?” Even in songs at contemporary Christian churches, it is easy to hear these kinds of lyrics and messages, except referring to us and God or Jesus instead of two people.

The idea of being lonely or feeling lonely comes from this place of imagined incompleteness. This whole idea of thinking that “I'm nothing without you, or lost without you” makes me want to bust out laughing, yet I used to plug into that concept just like so many do today.

I began to see myself as whole instead of trying to find my missing part, and now I have my own power back. When we think that we are incomplete and we require someone else to complete us, we are powerless until that happens, yet within a certain amount of variable time, after we find that special someone, something is likely to cause us to feel incomplete again, even with the one who supposedly completes us. It is simply because we aren't loving ourselves and realizing that we are whole and complete already.

I think that a healthy vow would be, “I don't need you to complete me. I want you to be with me because I enjoy being around you. I feel good when I'm around you. I love your laugh. You're smart and you are great to talk with. I love myself just the way I am, as I love you just the way you are. For however long coming together will enhance and benefit us both, I'm in for that, and when it's not, I'm okay with that too. Thank you for being my friend and lover. I so enjoy being with you. I look forward to enjoying being with you in the days to come. I love you without any conditions attached as we come together freely seeking to enhance our joy.”

This is true when it comes to careers, jobs, other kinds of relationships, and more. We keep our power within ourselves when we don't need those people or situations outside of ourselves to know our value. Our value within is a gift from our Creator, and She will never take that away, and as long as we choose to be full and not give it away ourselves, we are complete within. A relationship based on need is weak. A relationship based on desire from a place of fullness is always strong.


Let Us Come Together As Equal Whole People, Whether In Business Or In Our Relationships. That Place Is Limitless. 

Spread Some Joy Today–Whatever the weather wherever you are, there is joy in the air. Grab some.

Measured Esteem

“Men have looked away from themselves 
and at things so long 
that they have come to esteem 
the religious, learned, and civil institutions 
as guards of property, 
and they deprecate assaults on these, 
because they feel them to be assaults on property. 
They measure their esteem of each other 
by what each has, and not by what each is.” 
 
— Ralph Waldo Emerson 
 

[Classic post from 1-4-16]

As we deal with things virtually every day of our lives, and we have a tendency to place judgment on people and where they are on the scale of what they own or lack of what they own, how much money they have, or the lack of money they have, and so many other comparisons, it would be beneficial to make the effort to see the person inside beyond that facade as if it were true that we are all on the same journey of living a life in a body, yet we are all connected in spirit.

We don't have to change our whole world of things because things are such a part of our world, but it is beneficial to see beyond this limited view as often as we can to keep our loving perspective. 

Whether we are being given our cup of coffee, or talking to a prospect for our services or product, passing someone in the hallway, seeing someone on the news that seems to hate our ideals, if we can take even a second or two to acknowledge that we are all related, and yet unique, we open ourselves to the joy of living and better enjoyment of our own journey.

Who Is That Person, Really? It Is Me On A Different Journey. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by loving each other.

Practical Spirituality – Part 3

“Seemingly all of a sudden 
I realized that I had the capacity 
to love every person and thing.” 
 
— Albert K. Strong 
 

[Classic post from 10-26-16]

More practical Spirituality, which I now realize is what I've been sharing all along.

Compassion. It's a word that is bandied about with ease. And my understanding of the word is different than the definition in the dictionary that I just read: “a feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.” That's like saying, “I feel sorry for you and your affliction(s), here's my ten-step method for curing your ills and releasing your suffering.” Silly.

Compassion to me is a grand word, filled with practical and powerful selfless love without any agenda on repair. What a radical difference.

I have to share this beautiful and insightful quote by one of my favorite old “new age” thinkers, Albert Einstein.

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” 

I take issue with only one short phrase: “Our task must be to. . .” There really aren't any rules, and any observant person of the world around us can see that not so many are accepting this task, regardless of the stature of the person suggesting it. No, it's not a must. It's a potential choice. I say potential because we can choose yes and we can choose to ignore it completely.

I have been on this journey of learning to make use of what Abraham, Esther Hicks calls the Art of Allowing. This art or activity is the essence of compassion to me. As I allow others to be what they choose for themselves, and as I don't insist that they be a certain way on my behalf, I am loving them without condition. There is no better way to define the Art of Allowing to me. 

I've been practicing for a long time, but it is only in the most recent years that I have taken off the training wheels so to speak. In releasing myself to practice my own version of compassion in the Art of Allowing, and in expressing and feeling unconditional love, I have come so much closer to the person I truly want to be inside and out.

I'm not 100%. Even so-called Saints have an ego that sometimes pretends to influence. There is no end to the journey as in reaching the destination, but there is greater and greater allowing, becoming, expanding. I would even say that in just the last year, there has been a substantial expansion in me. It is ongoing, and I am in love with the process.

So where's the practicality in this? Let's say you're a salesperson, and do you suppose there would be value in loving your prospect that is in front of you, allowing them to be who they are as you do for yourself? As you are choosing love, the other cannot help but feel it in some way. This helps bring you together in purpose as co-creators of the event called the sale. I know a lot of salespeople look at the transaction with the prospect as overcoming objections, using manipulative words and phrases, with self-focused motives.

Let's say you work on a team, and something comes up that isn't your job and yet you have the opportunity to serve the team or not. What does love do? It serves. Easy choice from a certain perspective. These are just a couple of ways your Spirituality can be made practical.

What about homeless people? Criminals? Terrorists? Heads of State? The neighbor who refuses to take care of his lawn? The potholes in the streets? The flat tire you notice as you're in a hurry to get to an appointment? The guy driving slow in front of you? Friday afternoon traffic? A mistake on your paycheck? A leaky roof? A power outage? Can you love them? Love those things and events? You can if you choose to. Some may be a bit easier than others, but all doable.

Whatever is going on in and around our lives, we always have and always will have the choice of our perspective on them. We can exercise compassion, love, acceptance, allowing, appreciation, or we can choose fear, disgust, hatred, violence, irritation. I have chosen them all and many more. I now practice my definition of compassion. In doing so, I am changed and have released myself from my own prison. The vision of that is like after a week of rain, the sun is shining in all its glory with the clearest deep blue sky, and that sweet smell of that change.

“One Man Practicing Kindness In The Wilderness Is Worth All The Temples This World Pulls.” — Jack Kerouac 

Spread Some Joy Today–by turning your love light on high beam.

The Magnificent Value Of Feeling Good

“There is nothing 
more important 
than to feel good.” 
 
— Abraham, Esther Hicks 
 

[Classic post from 10-14-16]

As I got up this morning, I was thinking about all the hundreds of books that I have read and continue to read on self-development, spirituality, so-called self-help psychology, so-called new age, etc. I am drawn to one and then another, and another as if they were breadcrumbs along the path guiding me. I learn from each of them. I find value in each of them, and they are all the same and yet they are all different too.

I was meant for this journey, and in my later life, I am meant to share what I’ve learned as I have digested it, and am able to speak of it in my own voice as I have come to know it. All of that fascinates me. I could be doing a lot of things in my life, and yet this time that I spend with these Daily Inspirations is to me the most valuable thing that I do or even could be doing right now.

This morning, I wanted to share the single most important lesson that I have learned in my life: to learn how to feel good, and learn the value of feeling good, and how it can direct my life. You could also say choosing happiness, or as Michael Singer so delightfully said it, to practice unconditional happiness.

As I look back, the thing that guided me the most was my own sense of universal application. I would read an author and they would spell out their plan of salvation and have 50 points about it and all these ‘should’s,’ and ‘must do’s’ in order to get to inner peace. I read and considered, and took what resonated with me and left the rest there.

This is the perfect way to learn as far as I’m concerned. If it feels good to me, or rather, as it resonates with me, it is truth to me. As it feels off or bad or does not resonate, I’ve learned to simply let it be.

I’ve read the Bible twice cover to cover and I did that before I started going to church at age 45. I remember a pastor saying that the Bible is the only book that is true and that all truth is in the Bible and that you have to take the whole of it and not pick and choose what feels good to you. I completely disagree. God is still writing through authors today. She didn’t stop at one book. And, though there isn’t value in all of it in that way to me, there certainly is value in there that has resonated with me as if it was meant only for me.

What I mean by my own sense of universal application is this: To me, the message needs to be simple–really simple. It has to be able to be understood by a child. I love Albert Einstein and his thoughts on this subject. He says, “out of clutter, find simplicity.” That is what I search for most: finding simplicity out of the clutter. He says, “if you can’t explain it to a six-year-old, you don’t understand it yourself.”

I learned the real value of feeling good from Abraham, Esther Hicks, and I have also learned it from several other authors such as Joseph Campbell, where he said, “follow your bliss and the universe will open doors for you where there were only walls.” 

What is it to feel good? It means to vibrate at a higher level. It means to follow your heart. It means to love yourself, love others, love what you do. It means to appreciate everything that is around you–all of creation. It means to appreciate your own value and the value of all of those on the planet regardless of what might be said to the contrary about them. It means to seek the light rather than the darkness. It means to turn our eyes and heart toward God, the Universe, All-That-Is. It means to feel deep within that which resonates with our inner being, our Immanuel, our soul, or whatever words might please you.

It means to practice these things and not save them for later in private. It means to run our business with things that feel good to us like integrity, service, providing value, exchanging value, caring, giving others the benefit of the potential doubt. It means practicing kindness, courtesy, patience. It is being at peace within whether we are in heavy traffic on the freeway, listening to complaints, or letting go of overwhelment. It is releasing resistance, letting go of the rope, not being concerned about who’s right and who’s wrong, who’s to blame, who should pay, who’s doing what we disagree with.

Feeling good is love. Feeling bad is fear. In this world of duality, and to make it as simple as it can get, there is love and there is fear. Truly, it is simpler than this: there is love and there is turning away from love. There is choosing to feel good, feeling good, acting as we feel good, and there is turning away from that and calling it anything you like to justify that point of view.

This is not something you should do or not do. Only you can choose for you. I do it. I practice it. I’m getting so much better at it by practicing it. I keep what resonates, and let the rest go. I resist less and less each day. I choose not to fight. I choose to love. I choose peace. I choose freedom. I choose to appreciate everything–to experience life in its fullness. The joy that has expanded in me brings me to tears quite often. I am in love. To learn to feel good is the single most important thing I have ever learned. Ever.

What Is The Value Of Feeling Good For You? 

Spread Some Joy Today–by allowing your joy expression.

Disciplined Spontaneity

“Thinking is difficult,
that's why most people judge.” 

— Carl Jung 

[Classic post from 2-8-16]

Until I saw this quote, I had never thought about judging in this way, and it seems true to me that almost all my judging comes without any thinking. It is a more spontaneous response. Given the time and effort to really think about it, I might not have responded so quickly, and most likely not with such quick negative judgment.

My mother taught me at a very young age that when something makes you upset, count to ten before responding. I think she got it from her mother, and so on. Not a bad choice. Any delay can be helpful.

Spontaneity can be beneficial in some respects, but in anger and frustration, I think not. I like how Alan Watts says it: “He has very disciplined spontaneity.” That's a good thing under the circumstances, don't you agree?

When it comes to anger caused response, having a disciplined spontaneity will serve us all very well.

Let Us Give That Idea Some Thought. . . It Might Help. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by looking for the blessings all around you today.

Opening Toward Empowering Communication

“Can we care enough
to say what we're thinking?

Can we expand that conversation
until we have more clarity?

Can we take down the protective walls
and be brave enough and open enough
to trust each other for a while?”

— Albert K. Strong

[Classic post from 4-5-15]

I watched a movie last night (no surprise there!) that touched a profound chord in me. It's a young people's movie you would think on the surface. It was released in 2014 and it is called Two Night Stand. It's a love story with an interesting twist and its message was so powerful that I think every single couple in the world could benefit from watching this one or more times.

And yet, this flick is not just about couples. I think it applies in all of our relationships all through our lives, and so the power of the message that I received from this movie became that profound chord.

Here's the synopsis from the DVD sleeve: “After an ill-considered one-night stand, two young New Yorkers are obliged to extend their time together when a paralyzing snowstorm strikes the city, confining the pair to a small cramped apartment.”

Here's my synopsis: “Two young seeking people are brought together to satisfy a temporary itch, then through strange circumstances, they are stuck in a small apartment and after a lot of bantering, they finally decide to speak their mind, share their feelings, and open themselves to a different and better world.”

To me, this film is all about being open to communicating. I might have used the word honesty in the past, but I don't use that word much anymore because it doesn't mean what I thought it did. Honesty indicates that there is a right way and dishonesty would be the wrong way, but in relationships, it is never about honesty. It is about a willingness to communicate, to speak our minds, to withhold judgment, and to trust a better outcome, with each party growing in the process.

In the movie, it was mainly about sex. That's a place we've all had a lot of experience probably, and how they opened up and talked to each other about what pleased them and what didn't please them, and how they were willing to learn from each other in this way, enhanced both of them to expand to new levels of joy and confidence. That is why I think it was so good for couples. Maybe you are the exception, but I know in my life, I would have loved to do more of this. It's so easy to make assumptions, and at best those are 50/50 in results.

So this was a powerful sex movie, and it was powerful because of the opportunity for them to communicate with one another and learn from one another and grow in the process. It is a powerful relationship movie because unless we are a confirmed hermit, we are in relationships wherever we go. We are in relationships at work with co-workers, supervisors, bosses, and others. We are in relationships as business owners or doing business with others. We are in relationships whenever there is another person and we have the opportunity to communicate.

In all of those relationships, I think most people have walls around them often raised to protect, and we let out only what we feel is required for the situation. This works fine for many relationships because they are superficial. When it comes to relationships where we are working together, trying to accomplish something together in co-creation, that is not superficial and the willingness to communicate with each other makes it work or not according to how open we can be to learn from each other, how much we can trust each other to speak freely, how much we care about each other in that there be no winner and loser. Both parties or all parties must win.

Sometimes we are so afraid to hurt someone's feelings. That is our own fear, and fear begets more fear as we should already know. It's not about truth or honesty because there is no such thing as that, or if there were, it would be only our own. It is simply about caring enough (loving enough) to want to communicate what we want, what we do not want, what we are thinking, how we are feeling. Of course, this needs to be mutual with the other or others. This doesn't happen on its own in the union, so someone may need to step forth and get the conversation going.

Once it is going, growth is assured. Learning is assured. Better results are assured. More love and respect for each other or others is assured. And, when it comes to sex and business too, more joy is assured.

If You Care Enough, Take A Chance To Be Free.

Spread Some Joy Today–by speaking and sharing your joy. It's wonderful to feel it yourself, and by spreading it, you get to see it grow into so much more.

Forgiveness Is A Stepping Stone

“Forgiveness is not an end,
nor is it resolve; however, 
 it is a worthy stepping stone
on our own journey toward
gratitude, acceptance,
love, and appreciation.” 

— Albert K Strong 

[Classic post from 9-29-14]

As we have been born into and learned from our parents and others, listened and watched the media, discussed events with other people, it is clear that we live in a world filled with duality. This duality is often spoken of in terms of extremes of opposites, such as good and bad, right and wrong, life and death, health and illness. Often, we are taught to become judges and are encouraged to have strong feelings about these extreme choices one way or the other.

I was listening to an Esther Hicks short session the other day where a woman was talking about how she had been betrayed by their lover or spouse. She was quite upset by it, did not understand it, and the more she thought about it and talked about it, the angrier she became. How could she forgive him for hurting her so? But, forgiveness was not the answer.

When I was in my early twenties, I had a good job, but it was entry-level and I was married and just getting by. A relative needed a loan and the only way it would be made was if someone cosigned the loan. I agreed to help. Within just a few months, they defaulted on the loan and the bank turned to me. I accepted responsibility for the debt, but my thoughts were all about what a bad decision I made, how I should have known better, how they shouldn't have done that to me, and so on.

I thought of something funny from Jim Rohn this morning as I was driving. On a tape, he was talking about a guy he knew who was all upset about this other guy lying to him and taking him for some money and how that was terrible, unforgivable, etc. Jim's answer was this: “What did you expect? That's what liars do–they lie! To think otherwise is naive.”

Here's a great piece on forgiveness by Dr. John F. Demartini from his book, The Breakthrough Experience: “Forgiveness is a self-righteous illusion that makes someone bad or wrong and then presumes to judge and pardon. An apology is judging yourself, and both are guaranteed to perpetuate whatever you judge. The only thing that transcends this dynamic is love.”

He goes on to say, “If you can see that everything in your life serves you, that no matter what you've done or not done it's moving you forward, you suddenly see your own perfection and your heart opens–to yourself.”

In addition, Dr. Demartini says, “There exists a hierarchy of emotional responses in life. Fear and guilt are at the bottom of the ladder; above them are faith, acceptance, and forgiveness; and at the top is the present truth of love, appreciation, and wisdom. Forgiveness is a stage on the path, but once you see that everything serves and there is nothing to forgive, it becomes another myth. The truth requires no forgiveness.”

Although on the surface, and from our lifetime of training, it seems illogical and incomprehensible to be thankful and to find gratitude in these kinds of events, this is the ultimate stepping stone to laying the rope down on that subject. With forgiveness, we are still holding the rope, but we have loosened our grip and are giving slack to the opposing force, yet we are ready in a moment's notice to grip it again.

It Is Not About The Other No Matter What They Are Doing Or Not Doing. It Is Always About Us And Our Own Alignment, Which Is Another Way To Say, The Ultimate Answer Is Love. 

Spread Some Joy Today–by finding several things and situations to be grateful for. This will be especially joyous on those subjects that were previously associated with pain or regret.

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