be with you in two minutes…
…two more minutes…
In reality, though, about ten minutes passed before he uttered that second “reassurance”, and then it was definitely more than two minutes from that point until he shook her hand and asked how he could help her. A familiar scenario, no?
It’s common. It seems so innocuous, this habit of saying one thing but performing another. No reason to spend time putting a blog post together for it.
But here’s the thing, this habit of saying one thing but performing another: doesn’t this lead to confusion–mistaking impure truth for pure truth? If it’s OK for me to speak impure truth in this situation, why shouldn’t I be OK speaking impure truth in other situations?
Couldn’t we argue: Now if I speak impure truth habitually and no alarms go off in my conscience, then hey, it must be OK to go on in such a way.
Now this habitual speaking of impure truth, walking in a state of confusion and not even knowing it: doesn’t this risk developing the attitude that it’s OK to sometimes deceive ourselves &/or others?
Alrighty ma’am, we’ll give you a call tomorrow.
Couldn’t we also argue that confusion and deception in smaller matters opens the door to confusion and deception in bigger matters?
Being confused and not knowing it, deceiving others and not realizing it, whether in smaller, middling, or greater matters: how could this not lead to suffering down the line?
Throw a ball up in the air, it comes back down. No way around that one. What we put out into life comes back to us. No way around that one.
Out of confusion speaking impure truth and not knowing it, out of confusion deceiving ourselves and others but not realizing it. Done in small, middling, and big ways over the span of decades. When the karma comes back around, how could we even see it?
Hold on, sir. I’ll be back in one second.
We put negativity out there without knowing it. Negativity comes back to us in the same way but we don’t see the link. Not seeing the link, we think life unfair. If life is unfair to us, we become stressed and anxious.
Stressed and anxious over time, at least three things happen:
1) Our bodies become tense. Walking around tense, nerves get irritated and certain tissues are deprived of oxygen. Inflammation. Pain.
2) We do things to reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Eat improperly. Drink improperly. Fuck improperly. Buy objects improperly. All to activate the reward centers in our primitive brain. Years pass, the body becomes diseased and devitalized.
3) Our hearts become colder toward others, we slowly lose faith in humanity. Losing faith in humanity, we justify acting in mean ways and speaking mean words. Lack of trust, suspicion, cold-heartedness–where can stress/anxiety ever end?
The body developing pain, difficult to cure. Tangled up with the long standing layers of confusion and deception. Tangled up with all the other first world struggles we get involved with. How could our minds not be muddled, lacking clarity? Lacking clarity, how can our troubles ever come to an end?
Thus, it’s evident that enhancing our mental clarity is a prerequisite to decreasing suffering in our lives. Decreasing suffering in our lives, we shine more brightly from within. Shining more brightly within, others pick up our vibes without us having to say a word. Others picking up the shine-bright vibe, their own energy is uplifted. A benign cycle that spreads outward.
If we could argue all the above points, then couldn’t we flip it and argue that taking care to perform as we say 20 out of 20 times contributes to:
decreasing negativity coming back in proportion to what we’ve put out there,
decreasing stress and anxiety, and therefore
enhancing inner clarity?
Inner clarity: couldn’t we argue that it’s a most valuable skill for making A-grade decisions and that without it no A-grade decisions are possible?
Recapping: to enhance clarity, we strive for the ideal of performing as we say we’re going to, and correct the unskillful habit of not performing as we say we’re going to
Who among us isn’t a work in progress? Dedicated daily reflection on our thoughts, words, actions with an attitude of sincere desire to self-improve and a spirit of courage and humility allows us to see our errors and contemplate ways to correct them.
Honesty is making your words conform to reality. Integrity is making reality conform to your words. —Stephen Covey