I tried to stay out of the political arena for most of the year, but I have failed miserably. I kept questioning whether or not I was truly a spiritual helper and teacher if I kept getting caught up in the “feelings of politics”. I turned to several Buddhist and religious texts on the subject of spirituality and politics. What I learned is that even those who live and work in a spiritual capacity should be involved in politics when human rights are on the line. So I’ve dipped my toes into writing some posts here and there on my personal pages, and I’m liking or commenting on posts where I see fit. The “big issues” for me are the planet and climate and to stop using social media to push an inflaming negative agenda.
So, it was with a little trepidation that I responded to a friend’s post the other night. The post was a link to an article with an incorrect, and highly inflammatory, political headline. I felt the nudge from spirit to write a well-thought and researched response refuting the headline, while trying to tip-toe around upsetting my friend’s ego. Honestly? I was not THAT invested in it emotionally, but my Libra sense of justice (and what’s fair, balanced, right/wrong) was bristled. I prayed on it for a moment, and I didn’t feel like my words would upset the person in question. This person normally seems open to other’s ideas, and they’re a media major. I figured a media major would know better than to post inflammatory, biased, and ultimately incorrect information, so I was flummoxed when their vehement response seethed with an underlying anger I hadn’t encountered with this person before.
When the person saw my researched, cited, and well-thought out response, they laid into me with their beliefs. Not the physical truth of the matter, but their feelings and beliefs. I was seriously taken aback by the emotion-filled rant that did not even recognize or discuss the facts I had set forth.
And then, one of their friends posted an additional article in an attempt to show how wrong I was. Before I read the article, I thought, “Ok. Here’s an opportunity for me to step back. Apologize for being incorrect and show how this process works when one is found to be incorrect”. I was ready to be wrong and called out on it, just so I could show how this kind of thing SHOULD work in a world of balance, fairness, and responsibility.
Unfortunately, the new article only reinforced everything I had just said, proving me right. I’d missed the opportunity to show how to appropriately step away from an issue when facts prove me incorrect. That didn’t happen. So I thoughtfully replied again that the 2nd link also proved what I’d said above, and I apologized for upsetting people with my research. Luckily, no one attempted to reply to my reply. That tells me that maybe some sense of truth may have set in. Then again, maybe not?
I won’t lie. I allowed the person’s response to REALLY bother me for a few minutes that day, but then I worked out, and I meditated. I’m an air sign (Libra), so it’s important to me to deal in facts, but I tow the line at being a “know-it-all”. I’ve had know-it-alls in my life, and they’re not fun or attractive to be around. I truly try to be diplomatic in my delivery so I don’t step on toes and fragile egos. The other person in question is a water sign who deals almost exclusively with feelings, so although, they may be intelligent, their emotions run their decision-making and auto-responses.
It doesn’t always feel good to be right, especially when people stop interacting with you because of it. But what’s the alternative? Allow exaggerations and lies to be spewed unchecked at all times? That doesn’t seem like a rational answer either.
After a lot of meditation and deep thought on the matter, I’ve decided that I need not worry about others exposing the world to untruths and exaggerations. That is their own cross to bear, and I need not follow them if I deem it a problem. I was incorrect for ever trying to convince another person of their wrong-doing in such a public, and personal forum. I am not a great crusader for truth on other’s pages… only my own.
I wanted to be wrong, so I could show them how to be “rightly wrong”. I didn’t get to do that on their page, but I can certainly atone for my mistakes here. I needn’t change the minds of man, but I do need to heal souls. I can’t do that when I’m busy being a warrior for truth. The truth comes out in my work, and that’s where my focus should be. But if untruth comes knocking on my door, I will be ready for it.