Accepting the “Unacceptable”

150 150 Carol Davis

Today I am focused on accepting the “unacceptable”   by looking deeper into my soul.   There are many adages regarding this subject:  “If you spot it,  you got it.”   “If it bothers you, it belongs to you.”  “Look in the mirror,”  and on and on.   But for me, today,  I want to look past the mirror, and in a deeper way know my reactions, and my perceptions of people, places, and events are -without exception –  a reflection of my beliefs.   

I am often quite glib in proclaiming, but my reaction is about me without actually knowing what it actually is within me. So, the challenge for me igoing deep enough.   The troublesome reactions, perceptions, and attitudes come from very deep beliefs in my subconscious.  Like many,  I have done a fairly good job of knowing this truth at a superficial level.  But going deeper has always been a struggle. 

“It is a spiritual axiom that every time we are disturbed, no matter what the cause, there is something wrong with us”, writes Bill Wilson on page 92 of “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.”  That does not mean we are at fault,  it simply means I am always reacting to something from deep within me.   I  can have an opinion that something is “wrong”  or “unacceptable”  without the need to dig deeper because there is no fire burning within me.   However,  it is when  I become angry and or have any extreme emotional response, I need to heed the “red flag’  that I have more stuff to look at.  

I am seeing it a lot around our current polarized political climate.  I am not taking about political ideology here, I am simply referring to our emotional reactions.   Anytime,  I  am getting angry about people not doing it “right”  (which is code for “my way”)  and I want to know “why are intelligent people allowing this?”   I know it is time for me to look within.  

Looking in the mirror, as it were,  is totally the most difficult thing to do because we want to believe “it” (whomever or whatever)  has nothing to do with us and any subconscious beliefs.   Actually,  it does.  There is a huge difference between expressing an opinion without emotion, and being angry.  

henever I am angry about anything,  I need to ask myself why I am so angry.   The  answer,  “but they are killing people,  or “they …. need to …..”   is still about me because I am working with the depth of my anger – MY reaction is not okay.  My opinion is my opinion,  but my reactions and perceptions are what I want to focus on.  

We all have ideas about what is right and what is wrong and most of those ideas are from deeply imbedded beliefs we do not even know we have.   Most people (including me)  have a tendency to believe that our beliefs are the right beliefs and all others are wrong.  Now,  we do not say that consciously and, in fact,  in a conversation about it would probably say,  “we all have a right to our own opinions and  beliefs.”  But, in reality,  we do not react to what is going on as if we believe it.  

We says things like,  “I do not understand why people let him, her, them,  get away with this.   I have seen it in personal relationships, in group behaviors, and for years in the corporate world.  How many of us have worked (or are working)  for large companies and, along with our co-workers, witness “unacceptable “ behaviors and wonder why no one speaks up against it.   Well,  for the same reason,  no one spoke up for a long time at Enron.  They knew if they did try to right the wrongs,  they would lose their jobs, and/or worse.  The infamous group of women who allegedly brought Enron down,  did so at the expense of careers, lives, and credibility and trustworthiness.   Even people who are disgusted with the status quo,  do not like whistle-blowers.   (I think it makes them nervous about their own behaviors).  I have watched many stories on TV about whistle-blowers whose lives – and the lives of their families -have literally been destroyed and often after all that,  the initial complaint still exists.  

Anyway,  on a more personal, and way less dramatic level, I am the same.  Somehow I want to have change occur within myself without doing the work on me.   If I am mad at you,  I want you to change so I do not have to admit,  or look at,  the fact that my reaction is about me. 

So,  if you are angry about anything or anyone  – from yourself,  personal relationships,  job,  or politics,  give yourself the gift of looking within by doing written inventories of yourself,  and even seeking professional help.  It is not a sign something is “wrong”  with you  – it is simply a way to feel lighter and brighter about everything,  including yourself.  Self examination is a wonderful and glorious path to joy, peace and freedom. 


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Carol Davis

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