“MR. BROWNE’S SEPTEMBER PRECEPT:
WHEN GIVEN THE CHOICE BETWEEN BEING
RIGHT OR BEING KIND, CHOOSE KIND.”
― R.J. Palacio,
It has taken me many years to come to this place where I can admit to my own limitations. I am learning to ask and grow. I now have a place where I can let my guard down and confess I really do not know everything.
I’d begun to tire of the charade. I was tired of pretending.
I began to see others, people I respected and trusted, speak up when they did not know or understand something. They stepped forward and asked questions in order to learn.
As I quietly observed their honest examples, I started asking my own questions.
It took a long time to have enough trust in myself to risk that–simply asking questions.
With each risk taken and each question asked, my belief in myself–my real self–began to grow. With each successful step forward, I grew.
With this growth, I found myself on a new path. I came to a point–a crossroads–where I knew I needed to forgive myself in order to continue my forward progress. I needed to believe that I had done the best I could in my past with the knowledge I had at that time.
That was a big assignment. It is difficult for me to forgive and forget. When it came to forgiving myself, I struggled. I still so.
I began to see that until I forgave myself for my past mistakes, I would not be able to move on.
I’m working on staying aware, having an open mind, and moving forward. It took me decades to get to where I am. I need to stay patient, take those baby steps, and continue moving on.
“The acceptance of oneself is the essence of the whole moral problem and the epitome of a whole outlook on life. That I feed the hungry, that I forgive an insult, that I love my enemy in the name of Christ — all these are undoubtedly great virtues. What I do unto the least of my brethren, that I do unto Christ. But what if I should discover that the least among them all, the poorest of all the beggars, the most impudent of all the offenders, the very enemy himself — that these are within me, and that I myself stand in need of the alms of my own kindness — that I myself am the enemy who must be loved — what then? As a rule, the Christian’s attitude is then reversed; there is no longer any question of love or long-suffering; we say to the brother within us “Raca,” and condemn and rage against ourselves. We hide it from the world; we refuse to admit ever having met this least among the lowly in ourselves.”
― C.G. Jung, Memories, Dreams, Reflection