Let Not The Man Be A Child – Friedrich Schiller.
It would be last week that I was speaking with a friend, and he mentioned his behaviour towards a common acquaintance. The fact was, he’d been teasing this person and afterwards, did feel a little guilty for his actions. He said that he felt as if he’d smacked a child across the face.
In fact, he added: “I felt lower than a snake’s belly”, because he felt so incriminated for his actions. Now it has to be said that I have engaged in this form of activity too.
Only, looking at this from the other side, if he’d teased me in the same way, I’d have played along rather than acting like a spoiled brat who has just had his toy snatched from his hands. This is an adult – the man – who is acting like a child. Those of you who have commented on recent Facebook posts will know that I actively encourage serious criticism, and the harsher the better. Not only that, but I enjoy seeing other people’s points of view.
But this post isn’t about me, it’s about people who aren’t ready to take any kind of criticism – and it is this which makes it so difficult to get through to them. Indeed it is this very defensiveness which makes speaking with them increasingly annoying, and results in the kind of behaviour that my friend – and myself – engaged in. If only to let off steam! I mean, honestly, what else can one do? This is part of the learning process after all, and one cannot simply say “leave them be to sink or swim”. These are grown people who should have learned a little about what life is. However, it may just be that a sly comment will be that one thing which brings that person to realize their defensiveness.
Usually, it’s the case that they don’t, and they walk off blaming you for being so nasty to them. Only, how can one know before one has asked them? Indeed, this is where I employ my “side-angle” questioning: where I ask an innocuous and seemingly unrelated question that tells me what lies in their heart. The point is that they won’t be offended because they don’t know the real reason for my asking it of them. Quite as importantly, if asked directly, they’d not give a truthful answer – because they don’t know themselves well enough to be able to answer truthfully.
It simply isn’t possible to speak with people without making an enormous number of mistakes, simply because they aren’t able to converse openly and fully. Long gone are the days when people were gentle and open. I speak of this at length in my other (now private) blog, but the reasons are far too complex to express at this level of engagement.
If you do understand what I’m referring to, leave me a comment and we’ll discuss the issue further. My other blog is only private because of the terminology I employ, which can easily be misunderstood by those who have not engaged themselves fully in their own self development. I want to add at this point that the process isn’t easy and it’s not supposed to be.
The Offended Person.
The problem comes when one is speaking with someone and they are offended by something one said to them. Now the real problem here is that they can’t tell you what they’ll be offended by, so there is no way to tell if one says something seemoingly innocuous and they blow a gasket. This is, after all, why people tip-toe around their boss. The boss can no more tell you what he’ll be insulted by than your dog can tell you anything using words, because the boss’s intolerances lie in the subconscious: a realm that in ordinary consciousness one has no access to at any time.
Again, the only way to come to an awareness of the manner in which people present such subconscious leanings is by making mistakes. But here’s one thing people will do, and that is they will blame you for the very thing they themselves are doing! Now it does take a little self-reflection of the “self-critical” kind to realize that one isn’t doing the thing one is being blamed for: after all, this is usually the starting point for an all-out argument with both sides speaking at cross-purposes. However the ability to accept what others say and to measure this against their own behaviour is a mark of the person who has begun to clear their abilities to perceive.
Even so, this isn’t something one arrives at by being nice to everybody: in our day and age, if one is nice for long enough, and nice to enough people, one will eventually offend one of them. My own take, given a little insight, was to up the ante and so determine if someone was ready and willing to meet their challenges. My reasoning went thus: if I am kind to them, at some point – and this may be decades in the future – they will become petulant and intolerant. In this respect, I would have wasted all that time speaking with them as if they knew what I was speaking about. If there is one thing I have learned, it is that if a person is unwilling to meet their emotional challenges, they will meet every entreaty with an excuse or a denial.
In short, my activities revealed the rare people who were willing to meet their challenges, and engage with them only. I leave the others to their illusions. There may be a person who can get through to them, but it won’t be me.
What can we take from this post? The main thing is that one must take a risk in one’s relationship with another person if one is to determine if they are ready and willing to accept emotional challenges. That is to say, they are willing to see others as expressing their own opinion rather than being insulting, or worse. It is only the person who cannot understand what is going on who will insult other people: it is really that simple. After all, if they did understand, they’d reason with you instead, wouldn’t they?
How The Innocent Become Evildoers.
The Subconscious, Part 7.
My Jasper friend came to visit briefly last night, and brought his friend Milena who was visiting him. He usually calls me to tell me he arrived home safely, this time he sounded upset and I asked why. He said that his bathroom had overflowed in some way and had damaged his ceiling; he’d gotten it all cleaned up but was still a little shaken. But he went on to say that he was also feeling a little disturbed by the things Milena had been telling him about me.
A Look At Sentience.
A while ago I asked a group of people about their memories from before the age of four or so. I got a series of answers that ranged from very few to rather a lot. Only, well, you know me… the question wasn’t about the memories we had as infants.