“Having compassion for someone’s welfare, even while abhorring their actions, is vital to a healthy world. Always remember humanity—even in the most difficult of times.” ~LMB
Whew, these past three years have been a challenging ride for our nation. The divisiveness between the political right and the political left has been so contentious that it reminds me of the countless nasty divorces that have harmed far too many children. And just last week, one of the parents got sick. Geeze, that just threw a monkey wrench into things. Should the kids feel bad even though the ill parent was the one who made the divorce so much hell for everyone, or do they let the past go and rally around their sick parent?
Whether we’re talking about a nation, a marriage, or a friendship, the bottom-line rule is always, do no harm. Doing no harm concerning your parent’s divorcing means that you hold your parent accountable for his/her actions while you have compassion for their humanity and illness. Don’t pretend that your parent didn’t do harmful things or act as if everything is fine. However, don’t cheer about their condition or pain either. Wanting others to hurt because they hurt you or they are “bad” people will not take away the hurt.
Justifying attacking others who harmed you is “offending from the victim position” and is responsible for 90% of the world’s violence. This type of thinking hails that if you hurt me, I get to harm you right back ten times worse and without any guilt or remorse. Offending from the victim position harms all of us. Regardless of how your lover, friend, parent, co-worker, enemy, or (fill in the blank) behaves, refuse to use their bad behavior as an excuse for you to get away with yours. There is no excuse for abuse—from you towards others or others towards you.
Challenge: When bad things happen to people you have been harmed by, or you believe harm others, stop yourself from offending from the victim position. Keep your integrity intact and take the high road always; it’s way less busy, and it yields far better results.