What if the things that make us so mad keep us from accessing compassion? Compassion for ourselves and others? What if those situations that frustrate us so much require a different inner response? When we assume that someone else’s choices will harm us or that our choices may cause harm, we have forgotten that WE are creating our own personal reality and so is everyone else.
When that car on the highway cuts you off just speeding along without regard for you or other drivers, it can trigger fear, resentment, and even rage. How dare this person not follow the speed limit and agreed-upon rules of the road so we can all get to our destination safely!! We want to shake our fists, yell out loud, or even retaliate! How could they be so thoughtless and disregard the rest of us?
It’s the same when another needs us to save them, physically, emotionally, mentally, or spiritually. While we may feel the value of being ‘needed’, if we focus on saving ourselves instead, and allow them to save themselves, we may feel guilty or like a ‘bad’ person. When we assume that our self-loving choices can harm another, we have again forgotten that WE are creating our reality and so is everyone else.
When we remember that we are creating our reality and that others are doing the same, we can take our power back from the old stories about who is responsible for what.
We can remember that the frustrating actions of others are driven by their own fears – the only one that can be harmed is them! When we can see someone else’s fears causing their bad behavior, we realize it isn’t about us. When we know that we can take care of ourselves, regardless of what they do/say/want, THEN we can feel compassion towards their behavior. When we focus on saving ourselves, we can see others as capable of saving themselves and support them in ways that work for us.
Now when I see someone speeding and cutting off cars to get to their destination, I slow down to let them pass, send them a blessing for safety and peace, and a prayer to heal the fear that drives their behavior. It’s not about me, and I can simply make room for them on the road while seeing them in my heart as getting whatever they need to let go of the fear and stress.
Radical compassion requires us to see the innocence in our humanness, in our fear, and in our unconsciousness. As humans, we can be incredibly stupid when we are fearful. I know that I have said and done some thoughtless and stupid things in the past when I was filled with fear. It was difficult to forgive myself and see myself as innocent. Now, I know I was doing the best I could at the time with what I knew and understood. I hope you will let yourself off the hook as well.
Where can you allow radical compassion to blossom in your life?