Mistaken

It is intriguing that while there is so much talk about the word respect in relationships meanwhile there seems to be less in our lives than ever before.  People in our society are focused on more, faster, never enough, an idiosyncratic culture that there isn’t any room for reverence.

You know what I am talking about right?

Yet when we listen closely everyone talks about fairness. The importance of everyone trying to get more interferes with a person’s vision, making it impossible to see outside of their own need.

What is interesting about relationships like these is usually there is a paradox. One or both individuals expect the other individual to have total complete consideration.  The irony is that while all this expectation is happening, each person is  unable to see the needs of the other person. I can recall being in a meeting before and two individuals would be talking at each other while no one was actually listening to the other person. How is it possible for two people sitting at the same table be unable to listen to one another?

Think of an example in your life when you felt on the receiving end of this paradox. A time when the other individual seemed to have total disregard for your interest. Yet all you could focus on was your own feeling and what you needed. How does that happen? How can we become so blinded by our own need that we can’t see the soul of another person?

The irreverent paradox is an epidemic in our country today. It has spread to our workplace, our culture, our government, and the global world. It is impossible to imagine how peace can occur while everyone fights to get what they want. This weekend I heard a message about this issue of leaders refusing to embrace refugees into our country.

Last week 26 governors issued statements saying they would bar Syrian refugees from settling in their states, citing fears that violent extremists will masquerade as refugees in order to gain entry to the United States. I am thinking how does this happen in our culture? I am not sure about you, your family or your neighbors, but weren’t we all a refugee or have a bloodline that originated by immigration? I have grandparents who immigrated from Italy, does not mean I am an American because of my bloodline?

It is seriously hard to get our heads around the world filled with so much hate. While we all seek some level of understanding it becomes almost impossible if we are unable to put ourselves in someone else’s shoes. Maybe someone understands what has changed in our society, but it is impossible to imagine a time when it was any different.

Anyone have an idea of a time when our societal values were different? Please share your thoughts.

I can’t remember this time if there was ever was one. I do know this fact. Until we are able to love our neighbor as yourself, peace in any relationship is impossible.

So whether you follow the golden rule, share your toys in the sandbox or extend the olive branch, can we simply find some way to love each other.

2 thoughts on “Mistaken

  1. A thoughtful reflection on the art of listening. It is true that we probably don’t hold each other up as much as we think we do. However, is it too much to ask that people don’t push our boundaries and take more than we are willing to offer? I don’t think there is anything selfish about that.

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