I have been gaining so much wisdom the past couple weeks from G-d through the people that I have been having conversations with. I feel like there is so much coming in that I don’t fully know how to sort through all of these thoughts but I am going to try.
A few weeks back I was grabbing a late lunch from one of the places on campus and I happened to run into some friends. I ended up sitting down and joining into their conversation. One of my friends, T went into a philosophical tangent that makes so much more sense now, its incredible!! T said, “do you ever think about the way you actually look?” And I thought -what in the world? where are you going with this? T continued to explain how people all see differently and how people’s perceptions can be so vast. Then he stated how even when we look in the mirror, we see opposite of what people see. Like this whole conversation was very true not just scientifically but also philosophically. Of course this conversation went into the discussion of perception.
It seems like people perceive what they allow themselves to. That’s one reason why people who are more faith based see the world and people and experiences one way and more secular/material/worldly people see the world from a very different worldview. I am pretty sure all of this discussion was spat out to me in words back in my freshmen year of college but I think I understood and grasped it very little. Today I understand WAYYYYY more of worldview and perception. Like WAY more.
Flashback to summer. A boy that I had liked asked me on a date. I was excited however he just broke up with his girlfriend and NO WAY was I about to be rebound girl. I told him to give it some time. Well he didn’t have that kind of time to wait around for me and so instead I watched him ignore me as he walked in with a new girl, one time when our big group of friends was hanging out. It hurt. Then since we were all interns I would see these people all hanging out. I felt like I was watching a teen drama movie the way life seemed to be playing out. Well I stopped hanging out with those particular interns and I invested time in people who were more worthwhile and genuinely cared about me. As I got really sick around this time, there were two girls that were there for me every step of the way. I still consider both great friends and talk to them almost daily because they are so awesome! Anyway, back to the story. As the rest of us interns were finishing up our internship I was able to talk to another friend, Z, who was friends with the boy. I discovered then how perception works even further. Z stopped hanging out with this boy because of his actions and dumb decisions that he started to make. I not only gained further respect for Z but I realized that we only see what we allow ourselves to see. I had no clue Z felt the way he did about life, school, his girlfriend or even about this boy until after the boy was out of the picture. Funny how that happens. Well funny is not the way to put it but I guess that is the importance of discernment and seeing the good character traits in people.
Now to today. Today is now October 31. I guess I should be saying Good Morning. This past month has been filled with so much that I never would have imagined or expected. Both good and bad. Frustrating and Enjoyable. All learning experiences and opportunities.
i struggle to trust and I doubt good situations can happen because of my past bad experiences. Then when I allow people to dictate the way I should feel about a situation, often causing me to second guess myself, that is the problem. I seem to take input from external sources (people, the world, etc..) and when the data comes into my brain I sometimes struggle to filter through the data to output the right line of action or code (words). It is something that at least now that I know it, I can work on it. I may come across innocent and naive still believing that people are truly good. Maybe that’s why it frustrates me when people lie, cheat, steal or just don’t do the right thing, right in front of me. It is such a letdown because I expected too much (apparently). I expect people to do the right thing, because they should. (It seems my expectations are too high).
I know people are not perfect, trust me I am far from perfection. I am not even trying to be perfect, not anymore, because it just ends in disappointment. However, I can do my best to do the right thing, regardless of the situation. I am telling you all of this because all these thoughts have been swirling in and out of my mind for some time now. My perception of some people is skewed because I don’t know them. I don’t see them everyday or even every week, or even every month. I maybe see them on their best behavior at a party or gathering and so of course, I have no clue who they really are. Its unfortunate that I have let people that I don’t know try to bring me down. Some have even been successful. I don’t understand any of it.
Why can’t more people be honest? Do the right thing? Help a friend instead of bash the competition? Why are we even in competition? What’s the prize? Because, to me, I’ve realized there are bigger battles to fight and some stuff is pointless. I wish I realized that before. However, for whatever reason I needed to be reminded. I needed to be reminded that events and interactions with people often have very little to do with me. I am reminded of what I found the other day, “90% of your purpose has to do with other people, 10% is only you”.
That is crazy to me. Crazy but true. I have continued to witness just how true this statement is. Its true because we perceive very little of what is happening in the lives of others. We allow ourselves to understand and welcome only what we can see at the time. Its like an onion and we sometimes are privileged with the ability to peel back more and more layers. Sometimes we peel back too fast and see the REAL situation for what is is. Sometimes this gets in the way. However, I like to think that it’s ok. It’s ok to learn from experiences and to be wrong. It’s ok to learn that there are good people and good situations and also that there are bad and mean people out there too. We have to use discernment to perceive and receive the truth about people and experiences. I know for myself, I intend to avoid the bad and embrace the good.
And in the end, I like to believe that the truth is what will prevail. Because it will.
PS. I read this today and finally gained some better understanding of this prayer, part of the Amidah a big prayer. This particular part is a prayer against Heretics cited from the siddur I use:
“And for slanderers let there be no hope; and may all wickedness perish in an instant; and may all Your enemies be cut down speedily. May You speedily uproot, smash, cast down, and humble the wanton sinners – speedily in our days. Blessed are You, Hashem, Who breaks enemies and humbles wanton sinners.”