Who Rules the Roost?
Sometimes, we may find ourselves doubting or even laughing outright at a concept or an ideal put before us for consideration. A sense of cynicism, based on our prior experiences, sneaks out, immediately coloring our understanding of the idea or situation before us. Cynicism -an expression of ego based on personal frustrations, doubt, and a sense of helplessness- is an inability or unwillingness to believe in the positive potential of a person, idea, or situation. It is an often subtle, negative manifestation of reality, colored by our past experiences, colored by our own egos. And unless we identify and look at these situations, they may continue to affect our future as well as affecting our immediate present.
It is one of those undercurrents of society which prevents us from truly growing and going beyond where we are. And it’s really nothing more than ego.
Yes, there are cruel, viscous, violent people in the world. Yes, sometimes people can be selfish and unaware of how it exhibits itself to others and manifests in the world. But do we really want others’ egos coloring our own experiences so severely that we start losing hope, losing belief in the positive aspects of the world, of our own lives? … of ourselves? No, not really. So how do we get beyond this chain of events? We recognize them for what they are, we find objectivity and insight -without ego- and we forgive, to the best of our ability, all previous experiences, people, and thoughts (including our own) which may have affected us adversely and which continue their attempts to sway us in to believing the negative. We also look at the experiences as lessons which have been learned, or we seek to find those lessons in those experiences which may not be immediately obvious.
Does that mean that we must accept the atrocities of the world? No, I don’t believe so. But we can acknowledge them as the expression of others’ current stage of evolution and we can forgive them for not being where we think they should be on the evolutionary path. We can remove the truly harmfully-inclined from society as a measure of protection for the innocent. And we can help them, as well as the World, by not succumbing to cynicism – by not letting their beliefs and experiences color our own. We can consciously choose to believe, over and over and over again, in the positive in the World. We can choose to let go of our old habits of cynicism and selfishness and we can find compassion and love and insight. And by letting go of our old habits, by letting go of our cynicism, we may evolve – further and faster.
“By your own folly
You will be brought as low
As your worst enemy wishes.
Mischief is yours.
Sorrow is yours.
But virtue also is yours,
-Buddha, “Yourself”, Dhammapada
Choose wisely, each moment.
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