“Sometimes the worst mistakes we make are when we project our feelings onto others” – Rabbi Jonathan Sacks
Lately, I have been contemplating the breakdown in society and how radically separated we have all become, and I wonder what I can do to bring us closer together. How can I get us to see each other’s point-of-view– even if we disagree? Why is it that if I have a different viewpoint, I’m bad– why isn’t it just that I have a different viewpoint? Why must we always take sides? And why must I be afraid to be me– all of me, the good, the bad, and the ugly?
I find that Rabbi Sacks’ quote above truly explains it all– at least for me. I subconsciously project my beliefs and my feelings onto others, and when someone disagrees with me, I misinterpret their intentions, and I believe they don’t like me, and I believe that this is due to my flaws, so I take it personally.
This leads me to my next thought, which is: What is true humility? I have always defined it as me being no greater than, nor less than anyone, which means that I have no excuses, and must therefore be responsible for myself and my actions, and I must be respectful and kind. However, it is a mistake to think that because someone has more, they are greater than I am, and it’s a mistake to think that if I have more, I’m greater than they are.
C.S. Lewis rightly defined humility not as ‘thinking less of yourself’, but as ‘thinking of yourself less’.
This C.S. Lewis quote truly sums it up, and if we adhere to the above idea, we can truly begin to heal, to come together, and to allow for differing views without taking them so personally.
How do you think of yourself less without thinking less of yourself? And how do you refrain from projecting your feelings and beliefs onto others?
This week, let’s be kind, let’s not take ourselves too seriously, and let’s remember that just because we disagree doesn’t mean that one of us is bad and the other good. We can disagree and see things differently and both still be good, while also treating each other as equals deserving of love and respect.
Accountability, Community, Unconditional Love
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