The further you move along in your search for inner and outer peace, the more clear-cut others’ acts of hatred will become.
Your attempts to be a more positive, peaceful, and calm individual are likely fueled by examples of yourself and others previously acting in negative, agitated, and angry ways. As somebody who takes active measures to audit themselves in an effort to make a positive impact on others, you’ll develop a sharpened ability to identify malice in an effort to stop it.
You’ll be discouraged on your way toward improving yourself. Improving yourself doesn’t directly improve the world and people around you. Being the target of hateful, angry, and vengeful behavior will now hurt more than if you were to remain ignorant to the peaceful states which humans can achieve. It hurts more because we can’t seem to fully let go of our desires to strike back. Revenge is so sweet. It’s so enticing. It lures us like the most forbidden of all fruits.
In our minds, the desire to bite back against those who bite us first, goes to war against the knowledge that peace is ever-right. The journey toward improvement is therefore that much harder. Not only are you forced to deal with the tribulations of the world and the people in it, but your natural desires have to battle against the standards that you’ve set for yourself.
This article hopes to make that internal battle a little bit more manageable.
That battle can be difficult. You too, can emulate the hateful ones around you. You can form eloquent comebacks, you can kick, you can punch, and you’re even capable of killing. You’re capable of causing pain.
Three Little Birds
Picture three little birds. All three look the same and make the same sounds. Imagine them flying up in the sky, twirling, looping around, and landing back down on the ledge you first saw them on. You have no idea whether they landed in the same order, and perhaps it doesn’t matter. One of them begins to violently chirp at your presence. Something about you irks it. It even flies close by your face in an effort to intimidate and make you leave. You have no idea what caused its anger, and you just know that it’s angry. You’re a mere observer of one bird out of three. You don’t know what it’s trying to tell you, but you also know the other two are fine. This scenario has no significance. It means nothing. You saw the act of hatred from one bird, but were deaf to the meaning of its chirps. Its reasons can be endless, but do they matter if the other birds are fine?
Can you explain why the other two are perfectly content? The reasons for their contentment can be endless too. We know neither, why the two are happy or why the third is not. We can only observe their actions as they exist without meaning, and protect our eyes from being clawed out. The factors at play may be infinite, thereby it doesn’t make sense to take their actions seriously. The only thing you know is that some love and others hate.
Know Who Hates You, and How Many of Them Do; Care Not for Why They Do
Attaching meaning to why some people love you will entice you to understand why others don’t. Looking for, and assigning value to, reasons for why people hate you will leave you on a wild chase for admiration. This article is not suggesting to ignore the ones who dislike you with every bone in their body. This article suggests that you shouldn’t look too deeply into why that is.
Watch their acts, keep track of how many there seem to be, and defend yourself against their attacks. If all three birds begin attacking, then you know the problem might be you. In that case, evaluate your actions and ensure they match those of a person you’d respect. Be honest and objective.
Anecdotal acts of hatred should be seen, kept track of, protected against, but not attended to. Like a bird who chirps for reasons unbeknownst to you, attempting to make it happy by understanding why it hates you is a shot in the dark. Observe its anger, and forgive it for the pain that it may cause. It has selected a certain hateful combination of reasons on how to act, out of an infinite pool of options. The changing of its mind depends on time softening the edges of its motivations. It depends on a clean canvas being drawn.
Analyze your own actions, and operate with a fear of enticing people to propel negativity toward you. Never answer with negativity of your own. After all, you’re only watching a human being express themselves, driven by reasons even they may not fully understand. Adopt a formless existence for the love and hate that you receive. Watch both grow, observe their effects, and limit the damage that they cause. Audit yourself to ensure you align with the best version of yourself, and continue watching others. Watch and audit. Tweak a word and shift an action. Do what you can to bring back the constant hum that peace gives off.