I woke up this morning knowing that I’m right. Something was said, and I disagreed with every fiber of my being and I had to stop listening before the depth of the wrongness pervaded beyond where it hung in the air and permeated my consciousness. And then I said something, and my neighbor thought I was so wrong that he unfriended me on Facebook. And that was just wrong.
Ever been there?
It’s a short leap, it seems from being right to condemning others for being wrong. In our immediate realities this may manifest in behaviors that seem inconsequential, but around the nation and around the world people are killing each other because they think differently, look differently, believe differently. People are suffering and dying because others deem them to be “wrong”.
Sometimes I feel as though I just need to shut out the world. The tragedies are too numerous and too immense; the cruelty is too overwhelming; the ideologies are too conflicting and too divisive…
When the journey seems long, the threshold becomes the goal. Please, please, just let me reach a doorway into something else.
“Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.
When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase “each other” doesn’t make any sense.”
So how do we get there? How do we remain sensitive, loving, compassionate individuals in a world that often seems so inhospitable to all of those qualities? Keep moving forward. Continue on the journey, always cloaked in your values, carrying your ideals; and every once in a while take a detour into that field. Enter the place where the desire to remain separate falls away, where the will to be right dissipates. Enter the place where we are all One. This is the place where compassion lives; this is the heart of it all.
That field – the one where we aren’t clinging to our beliefs and our “knowledge” to the point of shutting out other notions and discounting other ideas… that field can be the threshold to another way of being and a new way of knowing. That field is where we remain receptive to hearing each other, committed to understanding each other, open to forgiving each other.
Receptivity is not frailty. Forgiveness is not weakness. Far from leaving us vulnerable, our openness can be the strength that propels us forward to greater understanding and greater achievement. In the midst of everything, remember that there is strength in connection. Remember that there is power in peace.