Good morning, Rob,
I read some of your advice online, esp. an answer to a woman sharing that her husband had rekindled a relationship with an old flame. You told her to respect herself, set boundaries, even if it means walking out on her husband and restarting her life.
It’s not always so easy to do what you’ve suggested, especially if one is dependant on the partner financially, and those who’ve cared for children and haven’t been able to build-up a career. Most statistics show that women with children who try and make it on their own, if they haven’t had the career, are in poverty.
I do agree with you, though, that sticking with a marriage where the spouse is insensitive and flagrantly violates the marriage covenant is not to be tolerated. In that case, the harmed spouse needs to part.
All of life is so, so simple. However most of us make it incredibly complex. We then feel so overwhelmed and confused that we feel that we have no idea what to do.
We do this because the choices we face are not easy. And so we want to avoid having to do what scares us. We want to keep doing the same thing and have everything around us change – so that we don’t have to.
We put our blinkers on to the simple – but not easy – solution and convince ourselves that there is some mystical solution. Then we search for the right book, the right guru, the right philosophy or the magic formula to make the world change… All so that we don’t have to.
This leads into something bigger and deeper that underpins everything we ever do, think and feel in life.
Everything in our society (sometimes referred to as the ‘real world’, but actually created only through common beliefs and maintained through habit) calls on us to compromise and fit into it.
I’ve heard people say that love is compromise. This is where the bitterness and resentments that destroy relationships originates.
Who you are – what you think and feel – is who you are. You cannot change who you are by denying how you feel or blocking out what you think. Just as you cannot find the route from A to B by pretending you are in C.
Yet if who you are, in the sense of what you think, say and do, depends on who you are around in that moment… on what you have to lose or gain from your actions – then you as an individual unique entity, do not exist.
All you are is an actor playing a role.
You either exist as an individual with a unique purpose, passion and conviction in what you are… or you are part of the cosmic furniture.
Every emotional problem at it’s root stems from one basic belief…
I’m not good enough.
If others don’t, or might not, like me, love me, support me or help me. I won’t be able to cope. Therefore I must act in a way that will please others.
There is another way. A way all great people through history have shown.
Jesus chose crucifixion rather than dilute his conviction to save himself or please others.
Socrates chose to drink hemlock rather than compromise himself for a few more years of life.
Lao Tsu when falsely accused stuck to his personal philosophy, enduring exile, isolation and vilification.
All of these understood they were playing a bigger game than the comfort, riches and favor most of us base our lives on.
You can spend your life moving figures from other bank accounts to your own.
You can move goods from shops into your homes and out again.
You can have the world admire and respect you.
Or anything else that you wish to have or do.
Yet without your own individual philosophy or conviction – one you are willing to die for rather than give up – you will never be completely satisfied or content.
You cannot fully live… until you have something you are willing to die for.
What will you die for?
Not your family or country. What are you – just you – that without it, life no longer has any point or value?