Saturday, November 8, 2014

Add my name to the list of Zen masters from the last post.

I have a notebook in my kitchen where I write down my to-do lists, and this morning, a sheet of paper fell out of the back of it.

Why I stuck it there, why I printed it out in the first place, no one even knows.  I can say, however, that one of my favorite parts of being me is how my past self is always planting little treats for my future self to find (usually with impeccable timing).

This is what was on the paper:

It's one of the cornerstones of psychology that we blame the person before we blame the circumstances.  We see someone acting unusually and automatically place the blame on him, never acknowledging how substantially influences outside of our control impact behavior.  Or how substantially influences we choose not to control impact our behavior.

Again, it sounds like such a selfish thing to take out of any interaction with another person - lessons about your own self.  But I began to think that maybe it was the exact opposite.  That that's what most people were missing, this idea that we are really all the same.  Instead of seeing yourself as a separate, fundamentally different entity, realizing that you are nothing more than a few coincidental situational differences from anyone you ever meet.

"We're a lot alike, you and me," he said to me once, and it was true.  But that was also true of any two human beings who have ever lived.  People drift through life, jumping from shallow relationship to shallow relationship, never changing and never seeing past their own immediate wants and needs. That, to me, is real selfishness - this failure to acknowledge that a part of you lives inside of every person in your life.  That's not to say that there aren't individuals to steer clear of; of course there are, same as their are tendencies inside yourself which shouldn't be encouraged.

But we're not so different you and me.

Photo source.


  1. We 2 are def not so different ;) or how come that often we have kind of alike thoughts, tho our lives are totally different from eachoterh and we have never met, live a good 5000 miles apart from each other.

    Annie S