talking smack behind my back


Let it go!
Be the bigger person!
Would you rather be right or happy?
Just be kind.
Lead by example.
Rise above.

All of these sayings are running through my head and I know what the right thing to do is, but at the same time, somewhere inside of me I want to unload and point my finger at someone for saying something negative about me behind my back. What is with that? I mean, who still does that after you graduate high school? Why does nothing bother me more then wanting to set someone straight when they are misinformed. I need to set the record straight. In this particular situation there is no wrong which means we are both right, right? The only difference is that other person doesn’t have the whole story and is making assumptions, as well as, not taking responsibility for her role in the situation. So I feel I am MORE right than she is. Nothing gets me fired up more then when someone is lying or not taking responsibility for their role in a situation. I have known this person for 4 years now and had considered her a friend but as it turns out we have a very different definition of what friend means.

What does all this mean? What should I do? Well, for starters, I called my Mom. Somehow the simple act of telling my Mom that someone is a meanie, had the same powerful effect, now, at 38 as it did when I was 8. Sigh. My Mom is the best Mom in the world. I have been thinking about confronting my demon head on and enlightening her to my side of the story. So then I meditate on the situation. Why do I need to tell her? What will it prove? What will I gain? Will she gain anything? So then I turn to yoga. How is yoga going to help me through this dilemma? Yoga is much more than the physical practice of the asanas but they are helpful in this situation by quieting the mind and tuning out the dialogue of thoughts, as well as, squeezing out any tension that may have seeped into my muscles. In yoga, there are “eight limbs” the second limb is asanas and the first one is the Yamas and Niyamas. The Yamas and Niyamas consist of 10 ethical principles that allow us to be at peace with ourselves, our family and our community. Just reading that makes me feel better. Sigh.

Taken from Donna Farhi’s book Yoga Mind, Body & Spirit:

The Ten Living Principles

The first limb, or the yamas, consists of characteristics observed and codified by wise people since the beginning of time as being central to any life lived in freedom. They are mostly concerned with how we use our energy in relationship to others and, in a subtler sense, our relationship to ourselves. THe sages recognized that stealing from your neighbour was likely to promote discord, lying to your wife would cause suffering, and violence begets more violence; the results are hardly conducive to living a peaceful life. the second limb, the niyamas, constitutes a code for living in a way that fosters the soulfulness of the individual and has to do with the choices we make. The yamas and niyamas are emphatic descriptions of what we are when we are connected to the source. Rather than a list of dos and don’ts, they tell usthat our fundamental nature is compassionate, generous, honest and peaceful.

Yamas -Wise Characteristics

Ahimsa -Compassion for All Living Things
Satya -Commitment to the Truth
Asteya -Not Stealing
Brahmacharya -Merging with the One
Aparigraha -Not Grasping

Niyamas -Codes for Living Soulfully

Shaucha -Purity
Santosha -Contentment
Tapas -Burning Enthusiasm
Swadhyaya -Self-Study
Ishvarapranidhana -Celebration of the Spiritual

I’ll go into the details of these principles at another time as I want to stay focused on the original thought. So, this is how yoga helps me in everyday life, it’s always there, non-judging, just in me, a part of me. We aren’t immune from hurt feelings, it’s how we deal with them that creates our environment. What will I chose to do with my dilemma? Will I confront my demon? I don’t know, I doubt it. I am, for now, choosing to take the high road and rise above it. I am better then that, not that I think I am better than she but I’m not going to get caught up in the drama. Life is too short and I hope that I won’t give this another thought from this moment forward and know that it’s ok if I do. My plan is to hold my tongue because she is not worth any more of my energy, she is an empty calorie friend. And above all I will be kind. The kind of person I want my kids to be, the kind I person I want to be.

Peace and love.


3 responses »

  1. My teacher in India once told me a story about a snake who wanted to be kind to every one, not harming anybody. It ended up being assaulted, injured, children hurt it when “playing” – the snake suffered a lot.
    One day a wise man passed by and the snake told him of its fate. He said: Don’t injure anyone. But don’t forget to hiss when you have to.
    ~ When I saw my teacher at the airport on my way back to Europe he was having a heated discussion with airline staff who wanted to tell him his luggage was overweight, even though the same airline said it was OK one month ago when he came to India. They finally acknowledged he was right, he turned around, smiled at me and said: Never forget to hiss when you have to. šŸ™‚
    Being a good yogi doesn’t mean you have to endure it when other people don’t respect you.

    • What a wonderful story and analogy with the snake hissing. I love it! I hope you don’t mind if I borrow it sometime?
      I would like to add that it’s important to learn when to hiss and when not to or as “they” say in the west -pick your battles. Asserting yourself to get out of paying 100s of dollars makes perfect sense but confronting another grown woman about a 1/2 truth she is living from over a year ago…not. worth. my. time. As I said, she is an empty calorie friend, there is no sustenance to her and after 4 years of knowing her she just doesn’t get it and doesn’t see how we are different. She says all the right things but her words are meaningless. I see that now and that is why I chose to let go.

  2. Don’t sweat the petty things, pet the sweaty things…My Grandma told me that when I was a child and I never understood it until I was older. Best advise ever. It always kept me calm, she also said be a duck, they always made it through the storm, let it roll off your back.

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