To live a life unencumbered by the grip of vengeance

When I was young and had my first experience of betrayal, I knew I stood at a cross-roads.

Do I harden my heart, or do I stay soft enough to trust first?

I knew I wanted to live a life believing in the good of people. To give them the space to show up and be decent as their first act.

I chose, with deliberation, to stay open, sometimes naive.

On occasion I am deceived or betrayed.

For the most part people are good.

And when they are not, many times it is because they are motivated by circumstances I do not have full awareness of, that if I did, we might find a bridge to cross together.

Almost always when I work with people on their relationship breakdowns and I get to hear and witness both sides of their stories, I see justice divided. Rarely is one right and the other wrong.

Almost always I experience the validity of both claims to harm.

People are mostly good. They behave badly for many reasons.

Human justice is about listening to the whole, seeking always to understand the behaviours and the reasons why the behaviours are motivated.

Divine justice requires us to relinquish our quest for retribution and vengeance to the larger play of life. To do this we must believe in a greater unfolding that spans time beyond our current existence.

To believe in divine justice is to live a life unencumbered by the grip of vengeance, which, like a metastatic cancer, will smother out any light in our being.

Dare to be naive. Dare to trust. Dare to allow justice beyond our ability to deliver. Live light.

This is not easy. There are days I am caught in the drama hook of nasty. There are people who have clearly got away with lying, cheating, profiteering, exploitation, betrayal…who I would very much like to see brought to justice now. And when a wrong is done I have a personal commitment to speak to it, to not remain silent. 

Yet I will not live my life where the charge of vengeance and anger consumes my own light.

It is a fine balance.

Photo taken April 13th 2021