Two people, two experiences: not always on the same page

A friend was confused that someone was openly giving her a hateful stare-down in church. I told her that anyone who can muster that much anger first thing Sunday morning and feels the need to openly display it needs to be left alone.  I reminded her, as Rev. Beth said at Unity of Melbourne yesterday from The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz: don’t take anything personally, don’t make assumptions.  The funny thing, my friend said, was that their argument was months ago and she didn’t even know he was still irked. They’d had no contact, so she figured it was over and done. No one can weave with you a bond of discord if you contribute no strands to the weaving.  Here one party had been feeding off their own anger for months yet the other was unaware of it and unaffected by it.  My brother was banished by our dad at age 18 and stayed away for 37 years thinking the entire family was mad at him.  He didn’t know our dad told the family he’d died in 1966.  Our dad was troubled, bipolar and alcoholic.  

My brother had 37 years of angst and I had no idea he was even alive.  He had been caught in that mental loop of being banished and unworthy (in the eyes of the family.)  After reuniting and speaking, he saw that he’d chosen to spend the last 37 years feeling shamed and unworthy…  not knowing he had a choice to think another way about it.  He could have chosen to move past it 37 years earlier… if he had a role model for doing that.  If he’d ever seen anybody do that.  He didn’t know he had a choice of what thoughts to think about it.  He thought he had to keep the thoughts that came up going in their repetitious loop. It didn’t occur to him to think a different thought on purpose.  Staying angry serves no one. That’s not who you are. Leave the past in the past.  Don’t hold feelings or property hostage. Make it right and move on.  Forgive everyone everything. Life’s too short not to enjoy every moment.