definition: the difference between what you believe and what someone else believes. The greater the difference, the more trouble you’re in.
For humans (who should know better), there must also be a fairly strong element of denial involved to make this so.
(DISCLAIMER: this following does not refer to any specific event or person in my own family – I have a larger scope here. So, B, S, A, G, D, F, J, L, P, M, C – if you take any of this personally, I will personally come and ply you with bad jokes. no mercy.)
I might believe everything is a-okay with my family, no need to check in. In fact, I can actually feel them close by (in a non-corporeal sense), supporting me through these troubled, stressful times – thank god my family has always been so good at intuitive mutual support. I can, without question, ALWAYS count on them to understand.
But Family feels Differently. They feel that they’ve become less important than my Work. In fact they have not been sending me fair speechless (supportive) messages, rather there is deep resentment brewing, and siblings, parents, cousins, aunts, uncles and in-laws have been sharing & comparing their lists of my failures and inadequacies for months and months – years, in fact, if you really examine history.
That’s when I finally show up for dinner, expecting hugs & congratulations.
Ah but Family can be cruel, hey? However, situations such as this can be resolved, given some willingness to let go of the ‘victim/perpetrator’ model of relationship, to rediscover the idea of tolerance, and re-affirm one’s own sense of humility. As the gap in belief narrows, mutual support increases, and wounds are healed.
I fall crashing into love. Cannot imagine who I was before I was hit with this person’s beauty, wit, wisdom, kindness & my own level of inspiration by same. My entire life is forever changed, and I never want this exquisite, joyful pain to end. I make plans & take action to ensure that it won’t.
The trouble is, it’s not reciprocal. Also and in fact, said object of worship is sadly unworthy, in the light of day. Has bad breath, is mentally & emotionally undisciplined, doesn’t like hockey or classical music or books, and tends to be the room’s top ‘drag’ on the collective energies. Folds his kleenex when blowing his nose (urrgh). Too bad we got married?
Or perhaps, let’s tear up this contract that we both thought meant something different, and re-write it.
I might develop a belief, over many years at the same job, that I have earned the right to self-determination. I know that my bosses and the bosses that rule them are benevolent, that they value my presence, my competence and my experience as indispensable to the business we are in together. Operations run so smoothly here that there’s hardly any need for communication – I am fully empowered to do first and explain later. Thank god for this long leash, although I know I’ve earned it, these past three decades. Life is good.
…until I get called into head office, with a recommendation that I bring my union rep with me. Maybe I shouldn’t have shortened my work week by a day without permission. Big oops Trouble.
Perhaps this is what good union reps are for – to build bridges over gaping canyons between beliefs, like the one above? Should folk such as these be trained & ordained as priests from the New Church of Re-claimed Humility?
Oh astonishing we (humans) – surprising, wicked, warm and impossibly, perpetually bound for trouble.
It’s all okay. I can take the trouble I make on the chin, with a (humble) chuckle, I think.
In the meantime, the trees grow and the flowers bloom and the bees get the job done.