Sunday, June 13, 2010

Walk the Walk

I recently had an incident where I was talking the talk, but not walking the walk. Under a lot of stress at work, I vented when I should have remained silent. I posted caustic remarks on Facebook. A co-worker that is on my friends list had to have logged on for my supervisor, showed them the remarks. I got chewed out and it got posted all over the facility, as an example of what not to do. Now, I can hear all you rebels out there screaming about freedom of speech, and privacy acts. My first thought was in that direction, also. I deleted all my coworkers, and all suspicious people from my friends list, and posted a lot of crap about freedom of speech, those that have successfully won cases involving facebook postings, etc. I was indignant over what I perceived as Gestapo tactics, invading a private sphere that I used to blow off steam over a really bad few weeks at work. So, what was the outcome?

Strained relations at work, I can tell you. Anger. Resentfulness. Feelings of persecution. I considered making a big issue out of it. Then I re-read my previous posts.

If you reveal your secrets to the wind, you should not blame the wind for revealing them to the trees.
Kahlil Gibran

Wise words. Now I have to come to some sort of conclusion about the whole mess. As I look back at my words here, I realize that I have, as we used to call it in my youth, 'backslidden'. This is a term to describe Christians that have fallen away. They are still technically part of the Kingdom, but they have lost their way- hopefully for the moment. As an anger junkie, and one with a large chip on my shoulder, I backslid and gave way to my old, comfortable feelings. All issues about privacy aside, my actions are the real problem here, not the outcome.

Conquer thyself, till thou has done this, thou art but a slave.
Sir Richard Francis Burton

Ah, more wise words! And isn't that the real reason for the journey? To improve ourselves, to be better people? To leave this place better than we were, in hopes that we have improved things just an iota? In the martial arts, we are taught not to gauge ourselves against others, for that is self defeating. No, we compete against ourselves, sometimes showing little to no progress. But the journey is the reason, not the progress! Due to injuries, I have been plodding along at the same level for years, and it never seemed to bother me. I rejoiced over any small improvement, and was glad I was able to do it at all. So why can't this attitude spill over into other areas of my life?

Again, I see the habit of confusing our 'spiritual world' and our 'physical world'. We want to separate it, to live one way here and another there. We want to be enlightened when the heat isn't on, basically. And that is a failing. For it to be of value, it must work all the time! Since it didn't work for me, then I must be faulty. My personal philosophies have to work not just here at the keyboard, where all is fine and the world is peaceful. It has to be useful to me when I am in the thick of it. My job is very stressful, but that is no excuse. I need to either find another job, or find the key to this one!

Well, looking back over my postings about change, and shifting through all my notes, I decided that the best response was for me to start fresh, with a new perspective. I have done so, and the last few work days have been very rewarding for me. And, being the type of place it is, others have done things so horrendous that my little faux pas is now considered old news- all this within a week! So, I did get something out of the experience, a reminder that all is fleeting. Had I not been so absorbed in the problems of the moment that I forgot to view the 'big picture' I would not have had to relearn this particular lesson.

The moral is: if you live in a glass house, be careful what you do. Everybody can see.

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