Let me begin by explaining that I have had a very difficult time in the past with the subject of this post. Yet, I have finally learned that by keeping a soft heart, you actually set yourself free. Please allow me to explain.
It is a false and long held belief that the longer that we keep a “hard heart” or our guard up the better that we not only protect ourselves, but that we also punish all of the other people that have contributed to us feeling like we have to keep a shield around our love center. Here is the thing though, not one person walking around on this planet has been spared hurt. Every single person has experienced loss, failure, bitterness, deceit, etc. It is part of the human experience that we go through to learn from. Therefore, when we seek to “protect ourselves” from others, we are only hurting ourselves instead of opening ourselves to our common stories to learn from. When we attempt to circumvent our joy by staying bitter so to punish someone else, we rob only ourselves. In the end, we can only control ourselves and no one else so keeping a hard heart so to keep the one that hurt us imprisoned works against us. The other person isn’t imprisoned, they have their own hurts to manage, it is only us that are robbed of the gloriousness that we can have here in this lifetime.
Two things reminded me of the above this week. Firstly, I was driving home from work down a large hill. On the opposite side of the street was a women on a bicycle coming up the hill. At first I only noticed her because she was coming the wrong way up a one way, but then I noticed that she was a heavier set women. She had a blue bicycle helmet on and as she got closer to my passenger side, I saw just how red her face was from the challenge. She had a steady determination to get the fuck up that hill when I would have probably caved and got off a while ago. In my mind I applauded her. Then it dawned on me that she doesn’t fit the typical “ideal” look of an athlete that we all hold dear in this society. I sadly realized that there may be others who would poked fun at her size for being the size that she was on a bicycle, or the fact that she was going so slow or maybe laughed at how she looked overall. I realized then that this human existence that we are all engaged in needs to change. More people need to be applauding others for taking the initiative to do something different…something better. She could wait until she is a size 6 before she gets on a bicycle in order to avoid the pain of ridicule, or she can say fuck you and take charge of her health. When I see someone doing something out of the norm, I always think back to the last time that I felt vulnerable and did it anyway. We all have these experiences. I would hope that anyone thinking of making fun of this women would pause to think about how they would feel for being judged for doing what they knew was best for them. See what I just did right there? Yeah. That’s called empathy.
The second confirmation that I had about keeping an open heart and remaining empathetic was during…once again…an online scuffle with a complete stranger. (I’m kinda famous for them. But I don’t really give a shit about that.) This scuffle was over a post about how disrespectful teenagers are and just how much the girl from Spring Valley High deserved to be body slammed by the police officer. My chest felt hot and tight and I couldn’t type a response fast enough. Forget the fact that this officer has a reputation for slamming people to the ground. Forget the fact that she was seated and unarmed. Forget the fact that he broke her arm. Forget the fact that he’s been named in two prior lawsuits. Forget the fact that he is stationed in a fucking high school, or that the girl may have given him attitude or ignored the teachers request for handing over her phone. That’s all normal pre-teen/teen angst bullshit. I also want you to suspend the rumor that she had recently become an orphan and further forget how you would feel if any of this was you or your daughter. Instead, just focus on the point of this person’s post which was that we have an abundance of disrespectful kids in this nation. My comment was asking the poster if he was aware of the fact that this girl may have recently become an orphan looking to gage his empathy, and to see if he would then make the determination that the officer, and teacher, should have had a different approach. I mean since she may very well have recently found herself with NO parents at such a young age. The response from a random female stranger was “What’s your point? That gives her the right to disrespect?”
HOLY MOTHER OF CLUSTER FUCK. Are you SERIOUS right now??
Let me get this straight, you yourself don’t respect her, or strangers for that matter, but you want a whole bunch of kids…who learn by example…to be respectful? Here is the best part; the person who originally posted the post that started this, the very same person who is bitching about how kids lack respect today, has slammed his ex-wife publically a number of times. The other person who commented on my post was so rude that her inner hurt that she carries around with her on a daily basis is beyond evident for all to see no matter how much she thinks that she hides it. Yet…we demand from our kids that they respect others. Get over yourself. Stop judging children by your own adult brain that hasn’t yet fully grasped the very way of being that you want them to embrace.
How in God’s name do you want children to respect anyone when they can’t even witness you respecting yourself? Or you respecting your ex? Or a stranger for that matter? I am tired of the argument that “while the cop may have overreacted, the girl did…blah blah blah.” Stop right there…stop at the fact that he overreacted. Over reacting is something that we do when we don’t have a soft heart. That is something that we do when we are trying to protect our EGO. We don’t want to be “disrespected” because we think that when someone disrespects us it is a direct hit on us when in fact a disrespectful person is full of pain. A disrespectful person shows more about who they are then the ever can about those that they disrespect. It’s a cry for help if you will. Being rude is a weak persons attempt at being strong. Lastly, a person who does not respect themselves has no way of respecting another. Someone being disrespectful is a walking neon sign advertising that they have something going on or something unhealed on the inside.
The sum of a persons life is dependent upon how much negativity has been subtracted – Brendon Burchard
In my humble and honest opinion, all of the above can be avoided if we all just keep an open heart. The open mind will follow shortly thereafter, but in the meantime we have to understand that there is no one that we know, walk past, interact with, work with, love, or have sex with that has not been hurt badly in this lifetime or past lifetimes. We all have the same trials and tribulations wrapped up in different packages, stories, and circumstances. What is so hard to understand about that? Why do some see it fit to judge how one person handles their hurt instead of looking at how they handle theirs? Look, I have been on both sides of the stick which is why I can so clearly see this for what it is. I have hated to the point of it consuming me. I felt almighty and powerful in knowing that someone else knows just how much I hated them, but guess who that really marked as the unwise one? Guess who was carrying around the false power on their insides? It wasn’t them out living their lives giving zero fucks as to what I thought.
We are all in this together people. A hard heart may not only keep us from getting to where we all deserve to be, it actually may destroy us as a species. I am no different than you, nor you different than me. It doesn’t matter what your opinion is about cops, or students that disobey their teachers. Or even how you feel about politics, politicians, or the state of affairs in this world currently. These are just tiny slivers of one big actual problem, and that is the fact that we are closed off from one another. We are attempting to circumvent the kind of pain that we all have felt before, in which there really is no avoiding anyways, by taking it out on one another. Make no mistake about it, there are certain industries that love this about us. They generate massive amounts of revenue based on us hating one another. We are allowed to get mad, angry even. We are allowed to feel badly, hurt, and be bitter, we just can’t unpack and stay there. We can’t move through life so guarded that we verbally attempt to smack down everyone who we feel is different than us. When we have reactions like I did with these two people, the chest burning kind of anger, we can de-friend, block and move on. This does not mean that we must hate them forever, or hate them at all. We can acknowledge that people have their own opinions, and perceptions in which they view and engage with life and then leave it at that. I’ll say hi if I see either one of them in the grocery store…well not the lady. She kind of sucks. But I don’t wish her ill will.
The point of the story is that we do not have to like everyone. We can avoid and even ignore those that we have no desire to interact with. Do you think that when we get to Heaven we instantly like everyone there? I don’t think so. We have souls and our souls don’t change wether we are here or up there. I think that over there we just acknowledge all souls as being souls and then go about our daily activities doing soul type and heavenly things. This means that I may still not like my sister in law in Heaven, but seeing as how it’s all love up there, I will probably have a different understanding of her then than I do now. This can be said for anyone that has ever ticked me off. So then why wait? Why not start right now by just acknowledging that all souls are souls in human bodies and go about our daily mundane tax paying activities while focusing more on reclaiming our true life purpose for being here, and enjoying the magnificence of this earth that God has given us. That was a statement, and not a question.
It’s all ok. Even the bullshit Facebook fights. All of this is part of a grand process that we must allow by following our intuition while loving one another. We must get to the point where we all realize that we have more in common than we don’t have in common. We have to not wish ill will on one another, regardless as to whether or not we agree or even like one another. However, none of this can be done if we are not keeping a soft heart. At least 98% of the time. So get to work.