Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Peace Starts on the Inside

I decided that perhaps my thinking has become slightly negative in recent weeks or perhaps even months. I therefore decided to go to the Self-Realization Center in the Pacific Palisades with my Mom to feel cleansed. I was very glad I went.

I think for the first time, as we went through a brief meditation, I finally started to understand how it worked. Typically my mind is always racing, however today with guidance, I think I managed to harness it a little bit. Although I had been feeling a little bit of anger towards an ex-girlfriend (I just found out she moved in with somebody proving that there had been someone else involved in our break-up), I started letting that go and started feeling good vibes for everyone. I realized that it is not only healthier to love than to hate, but much easier! I left the sermon today feeling more refreshed. Unfortunately, that did not last for long. As I was trying to leave, a few people bumped into me, without making eye contact or apologizing. I felt like pushing back, wondering how these people could be so discourteous. Then I made it to the line for the Friendship Tea for the weekly snack. Again, there were many people, and some people decided to get their food, and just continue to stand in front of it to chat, blocking the line, and blocking others from accessing it. I don't believe they were intentionally being rude, but often people unfortunately do not consider anyone else but themselves. All that mattered to them was that they got what they wanted. Nobody else existed.

To take into account your surroundings, and others around you, seems to have turned into a rare trait amongst peoples, even at a beautiful place of worship. I started feeling anger, and then realized that I had to really work on myself as perhaps in these last few months the crowd of the city and the thoughtlessness of many people within had eroded my new place of peace.
But I can never blame anything on the outside. I believe we must be so peaceful and strong, that nothing, nor no one on the outside can affect us on the inside. Not surprisingly, the Universe told me what I needed to know within minutes of me feeling this trivial and destructive anger. I had picked up a little booklet which contained selections from Gandhi's writing. Upon feeling this anger my eyes fell immediately on these lines:
I am too conscious of the imperfections of the species to which I belong to be irritated against any member thereof. My remedy is to deal with the wrong wherever I see it, not to hurt the wrongdoer; even as I would not like to be hurt for the wrongs I continually do.
No coincidence. I am but a fool to expect perfection from everyone. We cannot hold everyone else up to our own standards otherwise we will go crazy. Just because I'm overly considerate of others doesn't mean anyone else is, nor should I get angry with others for being the way they are. We are an imperfect species. And that's okay. Just accept others and focus on the simple and happy things in your life.

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