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Tuesday, January 11, 2005

The Enemy Within

Needed to post twice today because of two different themes.

His Holiness, the Dalai Lama has been quoted as saying that you should embrace your enemy because then his arms can't kill you. Another tenet of bhuddism teaches that you should love your enemy because he is your teacher. The Bible says that too...to love your enemies.

For so long I couldn't understand the "love your enemies" idea. How do you love someone who hates you and is evil toward you? But, when I read it and it was explained to me by bhuddist philosophy, I finally understood it. I haven't been able to DO it. I understand it in my head, but understanding and doing are totally different things.

Lately, I've been thinking about that saying alot. I've thought of it pertaining to doctors who give me the third degree when I need help, yes. But, really I've been thinking about it in the case of the enemy that is within me, migraine.

Is it possible to learn from the pain? Is it possible that pain can teach me more about myself? Can it teach me about what I hate about myself and what I can change? Would it work the same way that it will if I were to do it to other people?

I know that the pain has changed me. I used to live in a very fast lane. Now, I actually have time to ponder philosophies like this. lol Oy!

It has made me more compassionate. There is a compassion that can only come if you've lived through the situation yourself. A sensitivity toward others. A sort of mercifulness that you have when others wrong you or make you wait. It's given me the grace to let go of slights, of the pain that others cause, more quickly than I used to. I don't hold on to grudges.

That's not to say that I don't get pissed off. I most definately do. But, I can let go of it. I know that the time on this earth, in this life is short. Too short to spend on assholes and uncompassionate people. And I don't have the energy for holding grudges. It takes too much energy and brain power to be bitter.

I have a long way to go until I can embrace or love this enemy. I don't think I'll ever be able to. I fall short in this area. But, what would happen if I could embrace, or at least accept, my situation. I believe that this is the path to peace. Knowing that living in reality is accepting where you're at right now.

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