Righteous Indignation

I’ve read this paragraph from Pema Chodron’s book “Start Where You Are” every morning for a week. Given the amount of aggression we see all around us – not just wars, but in day-to-day politics, and how that seeps into each of our lives – I want to share it with you as well.

“We act out because we think it will bring us some relief. We equate it with happiness. Often there is some relief, for the moment. When you have an addiction and you fulfill that addiction, there is a moment in which you feel some relief. Then the nightmare gets worse. So it is with aggression. When you get to tell someone off, you might feel pretty good for a while, but somehow the sense of righteous indignation and hatred grows, and it hurts you. It’s as if you pick up hot coals with your bare hands and throw them at your enemy. If the coals happen to hit him, he will be hurt. But in the  meantime, you are guaranteed to be burned…

… The point is that we are completely interrelated. What you do to others, you do to yourself. What you do to yourself, you do to others.”




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