Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Man in the Mirror

We judge the most that which reflects back to us the worst parts of ourselves.  When someone is really and truly irritating us, most often it is because we are irritated with parts of our own self that we dislike.

In order to grow, sometimes we have to look deep within at that which we don't want to see.

I am easily upset by people that get angry quickly at little things in life.  Nothing makes me more uncomfortable than sitting in a car with someone who is raging away at all the bad drivers of the world. I hate rages, upsets and rants.  I want everyone to behave like my father who would calmly and quietly steer the car clear of any road insanity or simply wait patiently for whatever difficulties were happening on the road to clear up.  Even in a sudden emergency, he would simply react, jerking the steering wheel or braking suddenly as needed but with little or no comment or judgment.  This is the behavior I crave.   

And yet, I see that the trait of impatience and anger resides deep within me.  

Of course, it used to be much stronger.  My years of forgiveness work have taken me to a place where I am usually calm in most situations.  However, I am perfectly capable of feeling a "disturbance in the force" under the right circumstances.  Or should I say wrong circumstances?  

When I feel angry that I am trapped in a car with someone who is angry at everyone else, aren't I just judging the angry person for being exactly what I am--angry?

When I become aware of something like this, I know it is time for me to do a little looking in the mirror.  Where is my anger coming from?  Have there been times in my past when I have felt frustrated or impatient with life and unable to move forward?  That is often the feeling we have when we are driving behind slow drivers or drivers that seem confused or unable to decide where they are going.  

Or, when in my past have I felt victimized or put upon?  When have I felt that my possible moves were being controlled or blocked by others? 

As Colin Tipping likes to say, "If you spot it, you got it".   Because our lives out-picture the contents of our mind, when we see something unpleasant in our world, it's time to ask ourselves the question, "Where in my thinking, did I bring this into my world?"

When we discover our own negative and fearful thoughts, it is time to do a little forgiveness work.

We can start right in front of us by forgiving whatever appeared in our own lives today that triggered all this introspection.  Then we can forgive whatever we find deep in our psyche that is our own version of negativity and fear related to today's events.  Finally, we can ask ourselves the question, "When did this kind of thinking first show up in my life?"  And, "At what other times has it surfaced?"  We can then forgive the people and circumstances involved in these earlier versions of today's issue.  If we are able to pinpoint it's source in our lives, this is the very best place to focus our forgiveness.  

Watching what we judge and doing this kind of forgiveness work around the things that press our buttons is a very effective way to clean and purify our minds.  In just a short time, we can come a long way toward releasing a great deal of fear and negativity.

Surprisingly, this work can be very pleasurable.  First, because it helps you feel so much better.  But secondly, because the sleuthing into our minds and our pasts is intriguing.  After all, what's more interesting than ourselves?  

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  1. Nice article. I like to say that forgiveness is when I realize that what I thought happened .... didn't. It always works out that way when I question the story of what I thought happened. Such a shift in perception (miracle) that is, and with honesty as the tour guide, reminding me that at the end of the trail there is freedom, I can go there without fear. Thanks for the post.

  2. Thank you Rita. I love that "honesty as the tour guide". With gratitude for the miracles!!