Last week I saw an image on Facebook that struck me as both hilarious and absolutely on-point:
While I generally stay out of politics on Facebook, this one made me laugh so hard that I shared it with my friends.
I got a response that struck a nerve, so much so that I’ve taken the last week to sit with it before responding. I’ve been trying to differentiate between my immediate emotional response and a more reasoned response.
The comment was: “One issue voting is very dangerous – on either side of the aisle.” (For the record, I have no idea what this person’s political affiliations are, nor does it matter to this conversation. I also have absolutely no beef with him, I’m just reflecting on his words.)
I agree that one-issue voting is short-sighted and can cause unforeseen results and consequences. However, I don’t think this is a single-issue situation.
I believe in the spiritual principle that says, “What you do somewhere, you do everywhere.” It suggests that we have patterns of behavior that show up in every aspect of how we live. It also says to me that if someone demonstrates a type of behavior to me, I can expect to see that behavior again in other situations.
In this case, I strongly believe that if a politician – or any person – doesn’t have enough trust and respect for my intelligence and integrity to make my own most intimate decisions, chances are good they’re not going to have respect for me in other areas of my life as well.
I am willing to be governed by someone with whom I disagree if I feel they are demonstrating respect for me. It is scary for me to consider being governed by anyone (and I fear there are a lot of them in governmental positions now) who doesn’t show the basic respect for me that they would demand for themselves.
While this has been niggling at me for the past week, I don’t mean for this post to be a political conversation. Instead, for me it’s a meditation on respecting myself, regardless of any outside forces. It’s also been a good opportunity for me to practice staying quiet until I really understood my own thoughts and motivations, rather than responding with a half-formed or overly-emotional thought.
The respect piece really hits a chord because I’ve been in several relationships where my values were not respected (see: Who Is Deserving?) After my last relationship, in which I felt completely respected and honored, I know that I will never accept less than that again…but sometimes it’s really good to get a reminder!
Today’s miracle: Reaffirming my respect for myself, and remembering that the respect someone else shows me is an entirely valid method of discerning who they are.
PS – Today The Miracle Journal and I are featured on a site called Care2.com – please check it out, leave a comment, and give them some love! http://www.care2.com/greenliving/wisdom-from-leah-carey.html