“It helps little to cast out one’s own faults if you must quarrel with those of others.” – Seneca
There is a temptation – especially in the early part of taking up the path – to impose the standards and ideals that we are building for ourselves onto others.
When we see others losing their temper we will recognize their inability to have emotional discipline but we will fail to see that we are failing to discipline our own thoughts in allowing ourselves to judge others.
If we are really new to the path, if we believe in what we are doing but fail to constrain our emotions, if we allow ourselves to become zealots, we may even confront others with our newfound beliefs.
This leads only to difficulties we are not likely prepared to endure.
Because we are not emotionally disciplined enough to properly deal with the positions we place ourselves in, we get that rush of adrenaline where we should remain calm and steady. We become emotional and may even raise our voices when we should be detached and trying to understand the others’ point of view. And worse of all, we turn people off to our ideas when we should be attracting them by setting a better example.
We do this and then we think to ourselves that it happened because our argument wasn’t well formulated enough, or we didn’t have all the facts right, or we didn’t articulate well enough.
In truth, we shouldn’t be having arguments in the first place. We are still working on ourselves, we have no business trying to work on others. And when we are finished working on ourselves, we will see that we have no reason to be working on others.
virtus fortis vocat