Tag Archive | open minded

Church

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1 Corinthians 13:4-7New International Version (NIV)

“4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

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(this one isn’t mine)

I’m not religious but I love churches! And I just love the little golden cross at the top and the Wintery feel of my photo here. Churches are one of my favorite things to take pictures of! They are just beautiful. And while I don’t believe in any gods, I still find deep beauty & inspiration in some of the messages and love of people who believe in them or one of them. 
I am someone who finds beauty & inspiration everywhere, even in things I don’t agree with and even in dark situations.
But this year, as part of my one word challenge, I’m being even more mindful of beauty everywhere. Beauty is my word. 

😀

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So I decided to share my pictures here with a Biblical (at least in some versions) quote I find beauty in. And also I want to share a sweet Jesus song I find so much inspiration in.
I want my one word challenge to be about not only finding beauty in my own views and things I completely agree with but appreciating the beauty in other views and opinions I don’t share. 

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“Surely nations were not made for war

Or the broken meant to be ignored

Surely this just can’t be what You saw
Let Your Kingdom come here in my heart
And I will live to carry Your compassion, to love a world that’s broken
To be Your hands and feet
And I will give with the life that I’ve been given
And go beyond religion to see the world be changed
By the power of Your name
The power of Your name”

Isn’t this incredibly beautiful?! It’s not just a message that can only apply to those who believe in Jesus. It’s meant for each one of us. Jesus, whether he was/is a real man or only a character in a fairytale, is symbolic of love, compassion, and hope. Those are messages that can apply to all of us. We can look within us to find that power to help transform the world around us.

I invite you to look for and find beauty in places you don’t think you are likely to find it. Maybe in certain political views for example or in the people who hold views you yourself do not. There are views I don’t agree with but appreciate people’s courage to share them or the determination they have to work for their cause. If we really try, we will find glimpses of beauty even in the most unlikely places.

It’s worth the challenge!

Much love & light,

xoxo Kim

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We Just Disagree <3

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“So let’s leave it alone ’cause we can’t see eye to eye.
There ain’t no good guy, there ain’t no bad guy,
There’s only you and me and we just disagree.”

We Just Disagree – Dave Mason – mobile

We Just Disagree – desktop

What a great message and a great song! One of my favorites! Instead of seeing the other person or side as bad or wrong, we can view the situation as just a disagreement and see that most of us usually have good intentions. 

😀

I hope you are having a lovely day/night!

Xoxo Kim 

Your Brain on Fiction

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I have known that reading fiction can help deepen our empathy, understanding, and compassion for real people and real life situations. I experienced this myself in some ways and it just makes sense. When we see people in real life acting certain ways that seem unusual or negative, we may be quick to judge that person. We have no idea why this person is acting this way. We don’t know exactly what is going on in that person’s life or head. But in fiction, the author let’s us into the heads and lives of the characters. We have a very good idea why the characters do certain things where in real life, we often have no idea. In fiction, we can judge less because we understand and know better.  
For example, I recently read a novel (Killing Me Softly by Bianca Sloane) where a lady is being abused by her husband in every way there is to be abused. Sexually, other physical ways (hit, knocked to the floor, locked in a closet…), emotionally (he treats her as if she is less than him), and verbally(calls her insults and things). 
This lady is basically a prisoner in her own house. The neighbors would judge her thinking she’s freaky and a weirdo. She would act strange in public, hardly speaking to anyone, even neighbors, always being in a hurry to get home, acting fearful and urgent, dressed in very bland, unusual clothing because he forced her to, out of fear that other men would be attracted to her.
These neighbors had no idea what was going on with her but we, the readers are aware and instead of judging her as being a “freak,” we can have compassion instead. 
But what if this were reality and we were the real neighbors to her. We would have no idea what’s going on with her. We couldn’t get into her head like we can when she’s the character in a novel. 
Would we judge her, think of her as the “weirdo” of the street? Would we stop and think maybe the poor girl is suffering or just needs some love & compassion?
My compassion & empathy have always been very developed in general but I notice that fiction opens me up even more.

I have also read many other realistic novels where characters would act in a bizarre or very unpleasant way, provoked by horrific things that happened to them.
Some characters, I judged negatively myself and also would have if they were real people. Some of these characters are violent or bitter or just not appealing. 
Then the authors let me into their heads, allowing me to observe and feel every emotion and thought the person has(we can’t always do this with real people because we aren’t in their heads but the characters are realistic and have similar experiences to real people), and I understood better and made it a point to try to show and have more compassion in person to real people. 

I think this is a good reminder to develop stronger compassion and understanding for people in general. Unlike in fiction, we have no idea why they do what they do. Maybe they are suffering, being abused, mentally ill….we can’t possibly know completely what someone else’s life is like. Let’s try to better understand and be slower to judge. Compassion is always good even if someone isn’t suffering, compassion as a way of life is beautiful.

I think fiction can help open our minds and help us deepen our empathy & compassion in general.

And I just discovered this essay, while reading various things about psychology, the brain, neuroscience, and studies. This happened to show up and is fascinating! 

The Neuroscience of Your Brain on Fiction by Annie Paul – mobile version

I can’t for the life of me find out how to get the non mobile/desktop link.

Maybe this?

or you can just look it up if you want:

Your Brain on Fiction
The Neuroscience of Your Brain on Fiction

By ANNIE MURPHY PAUL
MARCH 17, 2012

It brings two of my favorite things together, brain studies or research and reading fiction! Very interesting!  

It shows that while reading fiction, our brains have extremely similar reactions as when we are involved in real life situations.
The brain, in some way, can’t tell the difference even though we know it’s not real. Our brain can’t completely distinguish fantasy and fiction. Some parts of our brain takes fiction for being real. 
This is a good reason to be careful what we read. Too much horror and heavy stuff can drag us down and generate negative energy. It’s good to mix it up a bit and read things to immerse our self in positive energy. 

Also the studies suggest that reading fiction does help deepen our empathy. And to rule out the possibility that it’s just people who happen to be more empathetic who read more, the researchers accounted for that. They did studies with pre-school children. When they read stories to them, the little kids seemed to develop better understanding for real life. It makes perfect sense to me! And I think it also applies watching movies. 

I hope you are having a great day/night!
😀

Xoxo Kim ❤

Love is not blind <3

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I recently read an absolutely AMAZING fiction book. And I don’t use the word “amazing” loosely. I am not someone who uses “amazing” and “awesome” very casually in place of the word “cool” or something. 

To me, the word “awesome” especially, and the word “amazing” are words to generally be reserved for something or someone who inspires literal awe or wonder.  But I’m not a “political correctness” control freak either, whatever floats your boat! 

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Anyway, the book is incredible and has fantastic reviews. I got it at no cost on Amazon Kindle app for BlackBerryz10. It’s called “After the Cure” by Deirdre (I love the name!) Gould and takes place 8-10 years after an outbreak of a vicious and infectious disease that sweeps across the world taking out most people. It’s extremely contagious and there’s no escaping it. A few people in the world are Immune because of their genetic makeup which happens to be able to resist the Plague.  And so they don’t contract the Illness. But they still suffer greatly.  

This disease turns people into cannibals. They become violent and vicious and eat anyone they can get their hands on. They uncontrollably devour their friends, family, strangers, animals….but it’s not their fault as their brains are ravaged by disease. 

But the novel isn’t really about the Infection itself; it’s about the psychological damage almost every person who survives, which isn’t many, is faced with after the disease is cured. Somehow a Cure is found and the “zombie-like” people get better but they remember everything they did. They remember viciously attacking, killing, and eating everyone they came in contact with.
They remember what they felt, what they heard, smelled, and tasted as they uncontrollably attacked innocent people and animals.
And now many of them feel like monsters and are accused by many of the Immune as being monsters.

They are overwhelmed in guilt. They are good people who just got sick. Many of them die by suicide. And many of the Immune people die by suicide because they also are guilt-ridden and lost almost everyone they know to the Infected killing them. They had to kill many of the Infected people who tried eating them. Then after the Cure was found, they felt guilty that they killed innocent, sick people who could have healed, even though it was to save their own lives and the lives of others. 

It’s also a story about segregation (segregation based on health status) and how many Immune people are prejudiced against the Cured who were once Infected. They think of them as “zombies” and monsters and repulsive because they once ate humans. They aren’t zombies though. They never died and just like anyone, can be easily killed in any way. And once they are dead, they can’t come back. It’s kind of like a zombie thriller but more realistic. Realistic because, they are just people with an Infection which causes their brains to change, not people who died and came back and can only be killed a certain way.

 They even have separate neighborhoods for the Immune and the Cured.

Immune people are supposed to register with the government as Immune and only marry another Immune person and Cured are only supposed to marry other Cured and eventually die out. The government doesn’t want their dna to keep going since it’s not resistant to the Infection.  

They aren’t supposed to mix.

The book takes place after most people are Cured, not during the Outbreak. There aren’t many people left in the world, even ten years later and the government is trying to force everyone to have kids. 

As I said, it’s not really a thriller in a zombie attack way, it’s more about the psychological effects on the people. But there is a big mystery throughout the book that Mr. Frank Courtlen, a lawyer, and Dr. Nella Rider, a psychiatrist, are determined to solve because many lives depend on it. 

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There won’t be any really big spoilers here, most of this info you will know by reading the description of the book or find out in the beginning of the book. But if you would prefer to not know without reading, click it off now! 

;-D

It’s entertaining and thrilling, a kind of mystery, but it also has a deeper message about compassion, understanding, and true, unconditional love and acceptance as well as hope. I believe the underlying message can apply to our real life situations.  

Some people are afraid to confess to others what they did while they were Sick or what they did to survive if they were Immune. They are afraid people will no longer like them and will reject or think less of them. 

The two main characters are Mr. Courtlen, the defense attorney for a doctor in trouble for something involving the Disease and Dr. Rider, the psychiatrist who is to evaluate and check the defendants in a Trial over the Infection outbreak. She was also involved in helping Cure and care for the Sick during the initial Outbreak. 

They are both very loving and compassionate people who want nothing but the best for anyone and everyone and they risk their lives to do what they believe is right and to save the lives of others. They both have deep empathy and compassion even for those who many people would think do not deserve it.

 Dr. Rider is Immune but she’s completely compassionate and accepting of the Infected and Cured. She doesn’t see them as any different than herself. She never viewed them as zombies or monsters or repulsive, even when they tried to attack her. And she doesn’t support the discrimination and segregation. She accepts all people just as they are, no matter what whether it’s in relation to health or anything else. She believes that everyone belongs together. She’s my favorite character. 

She and the lawyer become very close and they both have dark, painful secrets or things they are hesitant to reveal to each other out of fear of losing the other’s respect and love. 

I wrote about this concept before, here on the blog. My opinion is that it’s best not to cover up parts of our true self just so people will like us or not dislike us. No matter how much we love those people or how afraid we are of losing them. 

Maybe some things people just want to keep to themselves and that’s ok. But it’s something else to conceal something just so we are liked or not negatively judged by others.  

I don’t want someone to like/love me just because there’s something that person doesn’t know about me where if s/he found out, s/he would no longer care for me. I would prefer people to know and reject me right then if it’s going to happen. 

This can be anything: religious or political views, certain choices we have made, opinions on anything, scars, flaws, mistakes, health issues….if someone doesn’t accept you for all that you are, all that you have been, and all that you will be, in my opinion it’s not real love and not worth it then. There’s always someone who will embrace all of the person even if that person doesn’t like or agree with some things. We can accept the good with the bad, the flaws with the perfections, maybe even see the beauty in those flaws. 

 If we take the chance and open up about various things we can and sometimes probably will be criticized or rejected in some way. I believe that it’s worth it. And for all the people who dislike us, there are so many who will love/like us. They can’t replace the ones who reject us but at least you know that someone out there in the world somewhere desires just what you have to give and all that you are. I’m not just referring to romantic love but also platonic. 

In my opinion it’s ok to care what people think of us, to be concerned and even afraid sometimes but without going overboard to the point we obsess over it frequently or change or pretend to be something we’re not. It’s not good to be like a zombie, completely unaffected by those around us but not good to be obsessed and anxious often, either. We can find a good balance of generally caring but not too much. 

And I think there are at least two ways to not want to offend people. One is because we feel awkward about confrontation or what they think of us, that they are judging us, the other is because we genuinely care about the person’s wellbeing and do not want to inflict/contribute to unpleasant emotions. I think the second one is better. It’s rooted in selfless compassion where the first is rooted in selfish fear or awkwardness.

I think sometimes for many people, when we get to know someone then find out things we don’t like, we will still want to be friends with that person where if we first saw the things we do not like, before getting to know the rest, we may not be as thrilled to be friends with the person. (Imagine someone rudely spewing obnoxious views the second you meet, you may not care to know more. But imagine meeting a funny, loving, passionate person you instantly love then later hearing those obnoxious views, you may be more likely to accept it even if you don’t like it. I think most of us have love and offense, beauty and ugliness, can be rude and also respectful…and it’s good to give people a chance.)
I know many people refuse to discuss controversial views or refuse to tell details about themselves that may not be accepted by others, because of fear of rejection, fear of no longer being liked by those who once or would have liked them if they did not know this about them.

But if people only like you because they do not know a certain thing about you, is it really a genuine relationship? Is it really authentic love or an authentic sense of liking? Is it really worth it? I really don’t think so. Or at least, in my opinion, it’s not a relationship worth keeping around by pretending to be something else or covering things up. Just because you don’t express your views or certain things about yourself doesn’t mean they aren’t here. 
Even if no one ever finds out, those things still exist about us. So why not just embrace it? It’s part of us whether we like it or not. It’s not going anywhere no matter how much we want it to. So who cares what “they” think or say about it or us?! 

Someone can be very likable to many people because they aren’t very open and people only see the surface but there’s more than that surface for all of us, and repressing, concealing, or lying doesn’t make it go away.  Those people who never ever discuss politics, for example, or reveal much about their life still have those views (unless they are truly politically apathetic but even then, they likely have some sort of views) and still have that life. They still have those “flaws.” 

I understand not discussing controversial views or details just to avoid trouble/arguments on some occasions or because it’s embarrassing to have people know certain things about us or because we genuinely do not want to offend a person right then because we care about the person’s happiness and not just because we feel afraid of confrontation or what they will say to us, that’s one thing. Or because something is painful or something we just don’t care to discuss. 

But intentionally covering up things about us or trying to change certain things just because people may no longer be our friends either in person or on social media accounts or because people may not like or respect us as much, is, in my opinion, not good. I prefer people to reject me if they are going to because at least it’s genuine. I have lost Facebook friends and the love of some people in person merely because of my views on some things. Not always even because of my attitude about it, I did not always have an unpleasant attitude. I was just firm and assertive in my views. Which I will continue to be. 

I have also lost acquaintances online and off because I revealed my struggle with depression and suicidal thinking. I have had people look at me weird, look at me like I’m a freak. And men who were interested in me back off after they found out. This does not happen often. Most people seem understanding and accepting. But it’s not pleasant when it does happen. 

But I will continue to be open and honest.  

I used to see this as being true to myself but now even more importantly, I see it as being true to others. I genuinely don’t 
want people wasting their energy or time on me just because they think I’m something I’m not or don’t know something about me where if they found out, they would move on. 
Whether it’s on social media or in person.

I don’t want people to be rude and discriminatory and I think it’s great for us to be accepting but that doesn’t mean we have to surround ourselves with people we would rather not. I want people to mostly be surrounded by those they feel nourish, love, fuel, inspire them, people who are open and honest with them, not people who intentionally go out of their way to cover up stuff just not to lose “friends” which in my opinion isn’t true friendship.  We don’t all have to want to be friends with everyone. It’s ok to choose not to be friends with certain people. We can still be loving or positive about it and go our separate ways, wishing everyone the best. 

I’m not saying to just spill everything constantly in every situation and every occasion, ignoring boundaries, of course not, I’m talking about when it comes up in appropriate contexts or if we truly feel the urge to reveal something about ourselves.  Then I think it’s good to be open and honest and lose whoever I will. I will continue to love those people and wish them the best (if only in my head, I’m not going to keep contacting people who want nothing to do with me but I won’t have animosity for them either.).

Also if we change something about us or pretend to be someone else just so people will like us, there’s still going to be people who don’t like us. You can change or lie about your views, your body, your hair color, your job…then there will be people who don’t like the “new” you. For all of us, there’s many who like and will like us and some who won’t. And that’s ok. 

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I think this novel is beautiful and challenges our views of beauty and provokes thoughts on unconditional love and acceptance.  It conveys the message that every person makes mistakes or does something that someone else will not like, does things we aren’t proud of, and can be judged by someone somewhere and how it’s good to not overly judge people in negative ways. We usually do the best we can the best we know how in each moment and even if we don’t, there’s a chance later to be better. We aren’t the person we previously were. All that matters is who we are now. We don’t have to be imprisoned by our past. We can start now and be as loving as possible to everyone we encounter. We can take all that we were and all that we are and use it for the best, to build our- self into more greatness. The seemingly unpleasant facts about ourselves can be used as a catalyst for positive change. 
What matters most is that the heart is in the right place and that we see each other’s true inner beauty, not get lost judging mistakes and flaws. 

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The book has about 399 pages, I think, and is very much the page turner! I seriously couldn’t sleep night after night because I stayed up reading and thinking about the book. I felt so involved in it and so empty and so full when it ended. I miss the characters and the world in the book. I want it all back! Lol I even plan on reading the book again! I feel that way with lots of books but not usually to this depth. The author is so skilled and a gift to the world. She really brings her characters alive and the two main ones are very well developed.  The book is fairly long, nearly 400 pages, but for this one, that’s not long enough! 

The story is grounded in so much hope.

It conveys the message that no matter what happens, no matter how dark, ugly, agonizing something can be, the next morning the sun will rise, the stars will shine in the night sky, the Earth will spin and flowers will grow. And that people are basically good. While there are those with cruel intentions who want to hurt(probably because they themselves are suffering in some way), there are many, many more and always will be more, who want to love and help and show compassion. 

Yes, I seriously recommend it! I read some of the reviews and even some people who aren’t into zombie thrillers love it. As I said, it’s not really about zombies because first, they aren’t zombies anyway, just sick people. And also it takes place years after the Outbreak and is mostly about the aftermath. There are still some Infected people who have yet to be Cured where the Cure hasn’t yet reached and there is some adventure. There’s two other books about different aspects of this Infection, by the same author but can all be read separately, I think. I haven’t read those yet. 

“Love isn’t blind; it sees but it doesn’t mind.”

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To love, we don’t have to be “blind” to each other’s flaws. We can open our eyes, open our hearts and see. But love anyway.

I’m wishing you much love & happiness today and always.

Xoxo Kim

On being humble

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“When we embody love, we are the most powerful being in the universe.” ~ Emmanuel

I wasn’t always as developed as I am now. While I have always been empathetic, compassionate, loving, and understanding of others, not all of those qualities of mine were always as deep or as vast as they are today. I used to be more judgmental than I am now, sometimes criticizing people or things without thinking it completely through if it’s really necessary, sometimes overlooking the fact that I also do things that can, maybe even “should” be, judged critically.

“The praise that comes from love does not make us vain, but more humble.”
 ~James Matthew Barrie

I think for most of us, we evolve the longer we live, the more we experience even if we don’t realize we’re evolving. And when we do realize we are becoming wiser, more educated, more aware,  it’s possible to let it run away with us, let ourselves become a little bit too stuck up or arrogant, too proud, let our heads get too big.

Sometimes I feel so enlightened in some respects. I see things so much more clearly than I did before. I see how wrong I was in some ways about some things. And there have been occasions when I caught myself becoming too full of myself, arrogant, judgmental when I would have an encounter with someone who I perceived as not to be as “enlightened” or aware as I am.
Someone who still holds opinions that are not very evolved or opinions I disagree with or someone who handles those opinions in ways I don’t appreciate or wouldn’t do myself.

Like when I would meet someone who did not realize things or know things that I now know or realize.  And I would criticize the person for it, totally neglecting to realize that at one point I did not realize this or something else, either and that right now at this very moment there are things I don’t know or understand, that I am so less developed than I will be in years to come, with age and much more experience. I’m not the most enlightened being on Earth and likely never will be.  And that’s ok.

It reminds me of when I would take certain Logic and critical thinking classes in college. In the beginning of one class, our professor told us that in a few weeks we would already know so much more than the average person about reasoning, arguing, debating. He said we would begin to see all the flaws in people’s reasoning in everyday life. People around us, people on TV, commercials, everywhere. He said him, as a Logician with extremely advanced reasoning skills and nearly flawless logic, couldn’t turn off his ability to instantly detect flaws in reasoning even when he would be out with friends having a simple or trivial conversation, watching TV whether it was comedy movies or political or religious debates, reading, everywhere. His knowledge of Logic, fallacies, arguments…is so superior he can’t help but just see how everyone else’s logic is just so flawed. He often had to resist the urge to correct everyone everywhere. 

I had a few philosophy professors who told us, although probably mostly in jest, that we may soon regret taking the class because all of  a sudden everyone around us becomes so “stupid,” unenlightened, or unreasonable that it’s nauseating. Lol 

They said we may become arrogant, inpatient, intolerant of everyone who has never taken a logic or critical thinking class. And it was true. I did start to detect flaws in people’s reasoning everywhere I would go, even in simple, everyday conversations. I noticed how fallacious so many arguments really are. Sometimes it was so frustrating to know so much more than the average person about certain things.

And years later when I began to actively practice and meditate upon universal compassion and general tolerance more than ever before and realized it’s the best way for me to be, I started to sometimes catch myself judging others who weren’t that way.

Sometimes I would give myself a pat on the back for being “just so much more evolved” than most people I know or come in contact with.

When someone would get worked up during an argument, sling an explicit insult at an opponent, argue in flawed ways like I used to do, I would be critical of those people, praising myself for being “beyond that.”

Now I quickly correct myself if ever I catch myself doing that. I’m usually patient in the face of other people’s impatience, gentle with other people’s aggression, non judgmental of someone else’s judgments, tolerant of other people’s intolerance and accepting of someone else’s lack of acceptance. I understand that not everyone will be understanding and I have more compassion than I used to, for those who lack compassion. 

Constructive criticism is often a good thing but it can be delivered in a humble way. Assertiveness is necessary in some cases, firmness and unwavering confidence and strength in the face of some injustice.

Love & compassion & acceptance that I write or speak of, in no way means backing down and not speaking up. It doesn’t mean letting people get away with things they should not get away with. It simply means knowing bad things happen, injustice exists in the world, people have differing and horrible opinions and do horrible things but we don’t have to sink to the level of getting even, wishing horrific things on people as punishments, slinging insults and hurting others to seek retribution.

It’s possible to be firm, assertive, grounded, loud, opinionated but loving. 

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It’s important to stand up for whatever our Truth is, to advocate for what we believe in, speak out against injustice, abuse, cruelty in any form, to defend those who need us, speak up for those who need supporters…but we can do this while promoting love instead of bashing those who disagree. “Promote what you love instead of bashing what you hate.”

It’s not always easy but I believe it’s worth the struggle.

I’m very into Buddhism which teaches universal love and compassion. I’m not a Buddhist but I read about it everyday and practice many of their principles. There are more things I don’t know and understand about Buddhism than things I do know and understand. But I learn more and more each day.

You don’t have to be a Buddhist to incorporate many of their virtues into your own life.
And it’s compatible with religions including Christianity, Judaism, and others. Some people disagree or don’t realize. But Buddhists don’t necessarily believe in any specific god and their principles can go along with the principles of various religions.

You can think of Buddhism as a philosophy or as a religion.

Monastic Buddhists are seriously dedicated, hardcore Buddhists who follow everything in the Lamrim, every principle in excruciating detail and lay Buddhists are looser in their views or lifestyles. They take Buddhism seriously but don’t necessarily follow every principle of Buddhism.

One of the things I love completely about genuine Buddhism and true Buddhists or pro Buddhists is that they teach and promote certain principles and ways of life but they do not enforce them or judge those who do not adopt those views, attitudes, and ways. They teach, guide, advocate for but fully accept that others will not and they embrace those people anyway. This way they remain peaceful within and allow others to be what they will.

I think sometimes when some of us become enlightened on something or think we have and realize we were wrong or utterly ignorant or clueless previously, it can instill embarrassment into us, embarrassment that we did not know or realize this all along, it’s now so obvious, how wasn’t it always this blatant? And the humiliation is so strong we want to avoid it, repress, deny it and run fast away instead of facing it. So what do we do in this case? What makes it easier to avoid confronting ourselves on how wrong or clueless we were before? What’s often easier than admitting I was wrong? Judging, criticizing others who are in the place I used to be in, those who know less about something I now know more about, those with an opinion I once shared but now converted to a “better” one. It’s easier than confessing that I was wrong before and now realize or have become enlightened or changed. It’s easier to verbally attack the me I see in someone else than the real me, my own flesh and blood.

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I believe it’s important to stay humble no matter how much more I think I know. Or how right I think I am.

There will always be those who know more than me and those who know less. Those who are more primitive and those more evolved, people who are cruel and seem stupid and those whose intelligence is way out of the average person’s league, people with extreme compassion and deep understanding of others and ones who couldn’t care less to try to understand, open minded and narrow minded, educated and uneducated, enlightened and still in the dark….and to me, they all deserve compassion, empathy, and to be embraced in universal love even if they don’t display that same love or care to be embraced in it. I can still wish them the best and let them go their own way while going my way. That is true, pure, selfless love. At some point I have been and will be again, many of those things I mentioned above. 

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~Hug the hurt
Kiss the broken
Befriend the lost
Love the lonely~ 

I believe in Universal Love, higher love, all encompassing love and compassion, being One with all that is. 
Not everyone will agree and that’s ok.

Loud & Proud No Matter What

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I believe we should be proud of all our accomplishments, big and small, alike.   
Accomplishments such as kicking a bad habit, healing or recovering an addiction, quitting old detrimental ways…are still great accomplishments even though some people think they are not because they believe those things shouldn’t have been started in the first place.

I subscribed to this page:

http://www.inspiregreatnessnow.com/Free/day1_okJuK.shtml

And the man who the page belongs to said he is grateful he no longer cheats on women who he is in a relationship with. He wrote that it may seem like a bizarre thing to be thankful for but it was a very destructive part of his life at one point and he finally stopped.  Now his life is better.

I don’t see that as a bizarre thing to be proud of or grateful for. It takes strength and courage to admit to a problem or being wrong then working to change it and also to share with others. 

Everyone makes mistakes.  As I have said, no one is perfect in everyone’s eyes. No matter who you are or how amazing you are, someone out there somewhere,  thinks or would think, if you met the person and the person knows about it, that something you do, say, think, or feel or something you previously did, thought, felt or said is/was wrong. Someone will see flaws in you.

It seems as if we often tend to negatively judge people based on the seriousness of the consequences of their actions instead of the morality of the actual action, I guess you can say.  

For example, people often severely criticize people who take drugs and get addicted. The fact that someone takes recreational drugs and gets addicted may have serious, devastating consequences but it says nothing about the character of the person or the person’s general morals.  Some people never take drugs but are just very unkind people who want to drag others down and go out of their way to hurt people merely for the thrill.   And many people who do take illicit drugs or have previously taken them are great people with beautiful personalities who would never go all out to hurt people just for the thrill.

A couple months ago someone told a lie involving me at work.  I forgive the person and believe it was a mistake and not typical of her. Not a mistake as if she wasn’t aware of what she was doing, she knew, and she had malicious intentions, although I have no idea why because we always had a good relationship with each other.  But I view this as a mistake, something she should not have done but she did.  This could have cost me my job.

But I don’t view this as something that defines her personality or character.   It was a mistake, a wrongdoing, a negative act but I choose to look at her as the whole person she is and not as a horrible person based on one vicious act.

People have advised me to feel bitter towards her, to seek revenge, to see her as a horrible individual.  But I choose to move forward with an open heart, forgive her, and “forget.”

She did not admit she was wrong and she lies to the bitter end but I don’t believe her lying now has to do with being malicious towards me any longer.  I think it now has to do with her not wanting to admit she was wrong, feeling as if that’s a weakness on her part.  She has to lie to back up the main lie so as not to confess that she was initially wrong.  So even if she’s sorry, she won’t say it because that would be admitting she was wrong.

However, she did express guilt in other ways and seemed to be trying to make up for it by being extra kind and helpful.  That, in my opinion, is better than an empty “I’m sorry” anyway.

For months I have been angrier than I have ever been, some moments, to the point of fury and it was seeping into every aspect of my life, not just work. I would forgive then go back to holding a grudge off and on but I finally let go, for myself and for her. I don’t want to be angry. She doesn’t want me to be angry.  And it’s done now.

So, my message here is that mistakes you have made and will make, usually say nothing about who you are as a whole person and even if you aren’t as great as you can be, there’s always the possibility for change. You may have to work hard.  It may be awkward and feel uncomfortable now and then but it’s worth it.

And when you accomplish something great like realizing you were wrong and you change your ways or work on yourself for the better that is something to be proud of yourself for no matter what others say.

I have difficulty deleting apps, songs, pictures, and other files off my phone, even ones I never, ever use or even care about.   I always have this fear like “What if I change my mind and delete it and can’t get it back again?!” or “What if later I would come to really want this stuff on my phone and I forget all about it and never know to put it back on?!”.   Lol things like that. So because of this, I can’t put on new stuff or take new pics.

But two nights ago, yesterday,  and today I overcame my limiting fears and decided to go on a deleting spree, deleting everything I don’t use.  Some things I wrote down just in case I may want it again. 

I let my reasoning prevail over emotion. Now is what matters and now I really need more space on my phone.  And I probably will never want those apps and the truth is I can install most of them again if I want later.

This may seem like a trivial thing to be proud of but I must say, I’m proud! Lol. For me, that’s an accomplishment. 

Also, I’m a slob. It’s true. I leave empty soda bottles and candy wrappers around my house and my mom gets so mad. That’s not something I should do ever. But I do.  So when I actually avoid doing that on my own without being told, I feel a sense of accomplishment.   

I hope you will go easy on yourself.   Forgive. Learn.  Move forward. Be honest & open with yourself.

Lol My message here now is that you should be proud and thankful for all of your accomplishments no matter how trivial or important they seem to you or to others. Every little thing you do that contributes in some way, big or small, to a better you, a better world, a better environment, a better relationship, or a better anything is worth being proud of and grateful for.  Even the simplest things.

And this will get you in the habit of seeing the good in you and acknowledging and celebrating your positive aspects and successes. I believe this can lead to a happier life.

What are you holding onto that you should be letting go of?
What should you forgive yourself for?
What would happen inside you if you admit that you were wrong? Admit to yourself?   To others?
Why are you holding on to self resentment?
How about you make the decision to let go now?

Xoxo Kim

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