Always choose kindness over rightness......

April 28, 2013

Sometimes we need little reminders! blog post from Norma Woodcock. Please read it from her web site :  dakinidreaming.blogspot.ca

or just keep reading.

Always choose kindness over rightness...

My meditation teacher is a humble monk and never pontificates. His only intention is to encourage us to meditate everyday. However, one Sunday, he asked us to "choose kindness over rightness". There was a sureness in his voice that made me pay attention. I knew that I would put some extra thought into this subject and see what a change in this behavior might mean for my life. I began to practice. Initially, what I noticed were my urges to contribute the "right" information into a conversation. Even in small inconsequential conversations with people that I didn't even really know. I was shocked at how strong this urge was and how much focus was required to not speak. My next awareness was the realization that this intention to "give up being right", required that I listen to others, quite frankly in a way that I was not used to doing. This brought on a brand new perspective of reality. I was no longer the starring act with everyone else playing bit parts. I was making others the "starring act" and it felt like a wonderful gift that I was giving. I think this must be the "kindness" part , because kindness has always felt wonderful to me, and I was starting to feel wonderful. Less separate and more respected and respectful.

I have decided that Rightness belongs in court rooms. This is the place that is designed for the past to be dredged up as evidence.....mountains of evidence that "you are wrong".....mountains of evidence that "I am right". You have to notice that while the evidence is being presented in the court room that the "evidence giver" is the only one allowed to speak. The side that has been forbidden to speak, makes it clear that they are not listening to a word of the presented evidence. They roll their eyes and scribble on pieces of paper, in readiness to tell the other that they have not heard a word of what has been said. The courts have acknowledged that no one is listening and created a position in the court of "the listener"....the judge whose only job is to listen. This may work in the case of justice in the courts. But it certainly does not work in the realm of relationships. The flaws come from the very core of the system.

There is no listener. Both the participants want to star in the story and give the other, the bit part. Each is only participating in the the story of "me". The really crazy bit of this, is that the intention (usually only roughly drawn up) of these communications is usually for the two people to feel less separate and more united in this world. The fact of the matter is, that all the mental energy that gets generated in the desperate need to perpetuate "rightness", steals any hope of remaining in the present moment with the person you love. This good moment is rendered valueless. It would seem that we have used this person's past behavior to predict their future behavior. The opponent's ability to respond to a new moment has been stolen by the arrogant belief that we know how this person will respond in the future. And we have skillfully evaded the feelings that are unfolding in this present moment for ourselves.

In our quest for a comfortable, secure life, quite a bit of mental energy gets generated to escape from the reality of the present moment. If the strategy that you use to get away from the uncomfortable feelings in your body in this present moment, is to blame, than it seems obvious that we will need to control the behavior in the blamed person, so we will never have to confront this uncomfortable feeling again. If they would just change their behavior than I would not be forced to feel my feelings. The only route to not feel uncomfortable is to convince the other that there behavior is the culprit that has cause them to feel all these uncomfortable things. If we can give enough evidence to show them how flawed they are, then they will see the light and take care of our feelings for us.

It would seem that illusion may be grounded in the belief that life should not be uncomfortable. And if it is uncomfortable, there is a way to control life to avoid the uncomfortableness next time.

Life is pleasant. Life is unpleasant. Life is only in this one good moment. No need to look to the moment that has just passed. No need to look to the moment that has not happened yet. Life takes place only in this good moment. Look to this moment to give and receive the love that is always there. Stop breath into your heart and be here now....

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