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Sunday, September 21, 2014

Give up your craving to be understood and you will live in peace

A lot of our suffering comes from our desire to be understood by others.

It is normal for communication to be misunderstood and misinterpreted by others at times. Just as a spelling mistake is possible in a simple word, so is a misunderstanding possible in relationships. And all of it is caused by how someone wants to interpret what is being said or imagine that something else, than what is being said, is being implied! In a situation when there is repeated breakdown of communication, or even aggravated, angry, violent expressions of communication, it is best to remain quiet. And, more importantly, it is best to give up the need to be understood.

This may also require remaining quiet for long periods of time. Maybe even for years at a stretch. This is true in all contexts__with parents, children, spouses, siblings, extended families, friends, neighbors, workplace teams and such. Time and the truth alone can heal such situations. On the other hand, when you try to force an understanding and try to get people to see you the way you want to be seen, you will undoubtedly suffer. But you have a choice not to suffer in the throes of the pain that such misunderstandings can cause. Just stop feeling pity for yourself, stop demanding that you are understood, and your suffering will cease. The pain may still be there, and so will the factors causing the pain, but you will not suffer.

Accept that this strained situation is the current reality that you have to live with. Give the situation love by practising forgiveness – forgive yourself and the others involved too. Who started it first is immaterial, just accept being a co-creator of the situation and forgive everyone. Slowly, surely, you will find yourself becoming peaceful. When one person is at peace, the entire circle of influence of that person, even if people are estranged, benefits from the peace. Be a peace champion. Begin with yourself.

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