I hear a lot of rhetoric about negative feelings like anger, jealousy, selfishness and many more. These are usually either directed at others or are commentaries about what gurus may have written about these. I explore these negative feelings within me to see how I display, use or curb them.
I have lived a life where approval has been important. For years wanting to be liked made me careful about the persona I projected. Now I realize that being liked is unimportant to me. It is not a reflection of who I am or what I say or do. Being liked is completely dependent on the perspective of the other person - something out of my control. This realization helped me understand that being kind, generous, compassionate, trusting, trustworthy, honest, loving were essential for my own wellbeing. These qualities kept me happy and peaceful. What the other person says or does; how he behaves; what his motives are do not matter. What matters is that I continue to be kind and loving towards all. If in the process some consider me to be naive or stupid that makes no difference to me. I continue living my life being a good person. Does this mean that I will be misunderstood? Of course it does - by those who sit in judgment of me. That is their problem not mine and so I do not let that hamper my way of life.
I have learnt that there are many who will attempt to take advantage of my kindness - that is human nature. I have learnt to ‘hiss and not bite.’ It is possible to hiss with kindness too. You see when people think of you as a good person, albeit a foolish good person, they back off when they hear you hiss. For some reason it is important for the apparently most evil to be well thought of by even the apparently good person. Goodness is an inherent human quality that expresses in the right environment and is easily hidden and often forgotten in environments that are conducive to bringing out evil. In such environments it takes effort to stay true to goodness.
I harness the goodness in me. When I feel a negative feeling rise I choose not to display it but rather to use it to recognize the weakness within me that pushed it to the surface. When someone lies I let them know that it is unacceptable not by pointing out that they lied but rather by prompting the truth. Not that the other person then speaks the truth but I give them the chance to do so if they wish. I am not here to change the world - not even to change one other person. I am here to work at bringing out the inherent God within me. I must provide a pristinely clean environment within me for It to express Itself. That is my only purpose.