Many people do not like confrontation. I find confrontation quite easy…from years of teaching how to speak the radical truth with compassion, I know how to shift from having a personal agenda to caring more about the other than what the other thinks of me…in doing so one holds the space for the greatest aspect of another to be present.

But being in the firing line of criticism, of having someone attack…shred, reduce, ridicule…this..this I find harder.

The distinction is this type of attack is one sided, there is no invitation of any engagement from the person being attacked, no opening up to a conversation to understand, no inquiry as to why, how, what or when…the abuse is directed towards someone with clear intent to diminish. And a really smart perpetrator will zero in on your softest parts…the broken bits…with a precision driven by delight in seeing another squirm or break down.

This type of attack has become common place on social media…it has been labeled bullying. However, I would like to call it what it is. Persecution. There is a clear and aligned energetic and physical intent to reduce someone to a state less than human. There is a cruelty to it. And in the delivery of the cruelty, there is a righteousness, a superiority, a posture that the perpetrator has through their act, power over the other.

Of course the opposite is true. Their words and intent are masks for their own sense of diminished personhood, or their own shame. Sometimes it is because they have a pathological disassociation from any sense of how much they are able to harm another.

I have been considering my own avoidance of putting myself into the public arena of criticism and persecution. And the high cost this ‘playing safe’ has been exacting.

Anyone who believes that the status-quo needs disrupting is going to put themselves into this particular firing line. Repeatedly. And the more you think the status-quo needs disrupting, and the more you disrupt, the bigger the firing line.

In the end it gets down to how clear and aligned your intent is to disrupt, and for what reason. You have to believe in what you are disrupting more than you care about being persecuted.

To stay passive on the side line so as to avoid persecution is ultimately to resign to the status quo.

Resignation is death of spirit.

Bring on the persecution…fire up the furnace…my voice, your voice… my actions, your actions…..we need them all…

Photo credit: Lawrence OP via Compfight


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