Looking at my world

 a window

a mirror that I made from an old window

There was a time in my life when I had a negative opinion about almost everyone I knew. I can remember turning down multiple aisles in grocery stores to avoid saying hello to someone who I didn’t care for. I always had a good reason for my aversion to their being too. Sometimes it was because they didn’t say hi to me last time I ran into them. Sometimes it was because we were at a party together and I started a conversation with them but they went to get a drink and said they’d be right back, and as I waited, I saw them happily chatting with some other person. Sometimes it was because I could tell that they were avoiding me. Sometimes it was because they said something nice about my ex-husband or someone else that I was mad at. I felt very justified in my varied and sundry displeasures with people. After all, I had read that Sartre once said, “Hell is other people” and I whole-heartedly agreed, even though I didn’t know who Sartre was. He had an impressive sounding name and that was enough for me.

When I began to wake up spiritually, what I learned (to my great surprise) was that hell was not other people. Hell was my thoughts about other people. If I dreaded running into someone, it was because of the condition of my own mind; my feelings about either myself, them, or both. Hell was the state of mind I was steeped in when I judged everyone by a small and petty code of morality or behaviour. Hell was needing to make someone else wrong so I could be right. Hell was believing every negative thought, and making a story about the world to fit this thought.

Hell is an “exclusive” club where there is no room for thoughts that go beyond the small me; my fears, concerns, worries, likes and dislikes, my opinions.

I have no desire to belong to this kind of exclusive club (or any other for that matter). I want my world to become larger, more expansive, more inclusive as I grow through this life. I want my mind to be a very inclusive club with one moral code: be yourself, love yourself, appreciate yourself, and let that Love radiate out to all.

“Morality is simply the attitude we adopt towards people whom we personally dislike“. Oscar Wilde


16 thoughts on “Looking at my world

  1. Thank you for this blog Mary. I am so enriched by them every day. I now know that it is my ego that is coming up with all those negative ideas and am working to free myself of them. It takes a great weight off when we just give out love and positive energy to other people.
    Have a great weekend Mary

  2. Your beautiful mirrored window says so much Mary…that in order to really see out, in order to see the beauty and joy and love in the world around us, we must look at ourselves first and foremost…as our Love becomes richer, deeper, brighter, so does everyone and everything surrounding us. I love the expression of your moral code. I want to make sure that I recognize my reflection in every window I look through…may all of our windows to the world reflect and radiate the simple beauty that is each of us. Thank you dear Mary!

  3. Mary, while I have metaphorically speaking never not turned down an aisle to avoid people, what you’ve posted this morning has, I feel, great wisdom and impact on how I think; how others may think. The older I get and the more experiences I’ve had, particularly with a former step-relationship, I find myself knowing that my thoughts and attitudes are mine and only mine. They could be different. This is a post that I will print off and leave before me. How you reach into the depths of your being and pull out such succinct and meaningful words, I don’t know. I’m grateful to be part of your thought processes and that you share them here with us.
    SandyP in Canada

  4. Dear Mary, this is a gentle and beautiful reminder to practice patience and acceptance. Thank you! Our thoughts are powerful creators of misery or happiness….the choice is ours as to what we create. I love the Oscar Wilde quote!

  5. My younger son raised parakeets when he was a teen – and we loved them all in their huge cage. But sadly, their life was confined to a cage, but for the times he’d take them out to perch on his hand or rest upon his shoulder. As I read Mary’s post, I thought of a cage as a metaphor for the exclusive club she referred to, the one that keeps us small, wallowing in our own misperceptions, when we actually have the freedom, unlike the little parakeets to simply open that door, leave that stifling space of negativity, and step into the bigger world, heart open, mind expecting, spirit eager – The door really is unlocked, – just waiting for us to step out. Recently I read this: (I really have to start keeping track of who says these things so I can give proper credit) – “You are as big as what you love, and as small as what annoys you.” Have a wonderful weekend everyone.

  6. And to think I thought I was the only one who thought this…! Feeling so much less alone with my wild, crazy mind. 🙂

  7. Well, I’m mad at someone right now, so when I read this post, I thought I would try to tame my thoughts. Just then, someone else in my life did something to make me angry, so right now it’s 2 and 0.

    And so, here I go, into the weekend, with the goal of changing my head. I may just have to stay mad for another day in order to clear it out going forward. This time, I’m cutting myself some slack….no inner pressure….let it flow….it will turn itself around. And if it doesn’t, I have the rest of my life to work on it. Slow and steady wins the race….sometimes. 🙂

  8. Hi Mary,

    Thanks for the “soul” food!
    I believe that my thoughts create my world, reality, experiences,…
    It’s so much better for myself and everyone I encounter if my thoughts are coming from my soul, leaving ego far behind, hence I need to feed my soul with positive, loving, kind, images, words…
    Your posts provide these fabulous buffets along with all of WFF friends insights.
    Joy, love and blessings to all.

  9. Thanks for this post Mary. I used to do that in the supermarket too! Usually because I was in a rush, or embarrassed about something I had in my cart. One day I noticed that somebody I was avoiding was also avoiding me! I thought that was so funny, Now I am more likely to think that if that person has been put in my path, they have been put there for a reason, so I shouldn’t run away from the encounter.

    • I love your perspective Laurie (that when you see someone, they have been put in your path for a reason)…a very uplifting thought! Thanks so much for sharing it, Mary

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