Illustrated by Olivia Burge and Alisha Patel
How early did we lose our childlike wonder? When did we lose that innocent state in which we did not judge others, nor need to be “right”—when we saw the best in everything and everyone, and when it did not matter that someone was Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, atheist, republican, democrat, omnivorous, vegetarian, gay, or of a different race? Somewhere along the way we lose our innocence and started to judge others.
Being right, defending our positions, takes an enormous amount of mental energy and often alienates us from the people in our lives. Needing to be right – or needing someone else to be wrong – encourages others to become defensive, and puts pressure on us to keep defending. It takes up to much energy to be doing this. This can lead to war. We war over ideas and beliefs that we often have never questioned. These include ideas from our upbringings, our religions, our scars and wounds, and our existential need to identify ourselves in some way.
The truth is people are entitled their opinions and this is exactly what they are, and you can be respectful of that even if they are not respectful of your opinion. People are entitled to be happy and have their experiences, as are we. The question to ask ourselves are, do we want to be happy or be right? Isn’t life too short to be fighting?
This reaction will take practice. Once you keep practicing it, it becomes a habit. Ask yourself in that moment when you want to be right, what do I choose? Do I choose peace or wanting to be right? Recognise what is going on and decide what you would like to experience. It is a choice and you can DECIDE in any moment how to react.
I hope you enjoyed this and any comments you may have would be appreciated.
Thank you and Namaste