I firmly believe that just because you can take a punch does not mean you are obligated to stand in front of flying fists! It is amazing how many people believe they must have a “spiritually appropriate” response to any and everything that goes on with the people around them. They seem to measure their personal growth and spiritual acumen by the number of adverse conditions they are able to live with and move through.
For some, it is a measure of their faith and trust. Some people seem to actually believe that if they can stay present, loving and forgive the most dastardly deeds they will somehow be rewarded with peace and enlightenment. While this may be one path, there is a short cut. Duck!
I have learned to duck behind God when the crazy starts flying. There are some experiences I no longer choose to have. I accept that some people will not like me. They will not agree with me and they do not choose to see me as an enlightened being. Perhaps we do have karma that must be worked out. However, I reserve my right to choose how I will participate. I choose to duck!
Some people just want to fight, argue and be upset. I no longer consider it a necessity to stand with them in the midst of conflama (conflict laced with drama.) When family and friends know you have a spiritual outlook, they want to include you in their problem solving. We train people to come to us by always knowing what to say and what to do. Just because we can handle it, doesn’t mean we must handle it or, that it is in our or their best interest to do so.
Instead, we can choose to duck – – Dodge Underdeveloped Consciousness Kindly! Trust me when I tell you that there is absolutely no heavenly reward for putting up with bad behavior, entertaining crazy or setting yourself up to be the one everyone leans on or looks to for help. You have a God-driven right to duck away from craziness, dodge co-dependency and remove yourself from things and people that do not breath new life into your life. And, if for some reason you feel called to be the savior of those who seem unable to save themselves, I suggest you study the art and science of self-defense. Even there you will learn how to avoid unnecessary injury.
Consider this; everyday ducks do something that is considered water-proofing. Ducks excrete a certain kind of oil under their wings that protects their feathers from the soil in the waters in which they swim. A mature duck will use this oil to cover its feather as a form of protection. A mother duck teaches her babies how to do it so their environment does not pollute them. Ducks seem to know that the waters in which they live is filled with trash and debris.
Humans do not seem to recognize that the same is true of their living environment. I know God is in charge! This means, I can keep my mouth shut. I am aware that the Divine Mind of the Creator of all holds far more information than my limited human rain. This means I need not offer affirmations or prayers to everyone for what ails them. I no longer assume it is my responsibility to inspire or enlighten people who fight me or engage in fighting each other. I now understand that there are some things against which I can be “water-proofed.” This means I bow out gracefully, knowing that there is a Higher Mind, much more capable of working on the situation than I am.
I encourage us all not to be afraid to duck when we see the same people, with the same problems coming repeatedly in our direction. In fact, there are those instances when the wisest choice we can make is to DUCK!
Iyanla Vanzant is the best-selling author of five books on self-empowerment, personal growth and spiritual healing. As the founder and executive director of the Inner Visions Spiritual Life Maintenance Network, she conducts workshops, seminars and lectures nationally. Drawing from her own experiences of family dysfunction, abuse, and poverty, Iyanla encourages us all to look at ourselves, laugh at ourselves and then take the necessary steps to heal ourselves. Her practical message is based on the principles of universal law, self-determination and the power of Spirit. You can learn more about her work at www.innervisionsworldwide.com.
Iyanla has recently appeared several times during Oprah’s Lifeclass webcast segments. You can view the classes here: http://www.oprah.com/oprahs-lifeclass/oprahs-lifeclass.html