May 8

  

Today's Quotation:

Resentment is the number one offender. It destroys more alcoholics than anything else. From it stem all forms of spiritual disease, for we have been not only mentally and physically ill, we have been spiritually sick.

Alcoholics Anonymous

Today's Meditation:

If we're overweight and we want to do something about it, we watch what we eat, what we put into our bodies.  If we have an upset stomach, we watch what we put into our bodies so that our stomach can get better.  If we get a splinter, we take it out so that the harmful foreign object can't continue to hurt us.

There are so many things that hurt our spirit, though, that we just leave as they are, and we make little effort to get them out of our lives.  Something like resentment can eat us up inside like a cancer, turning our days and nights into miserable experiences, yet there's no such thing as a pair of tweezers that will pull out resentment or anger like there is to pull out splinters.  Besides, these things that hurt our spirits are invisible, and we really can't see them to pull them out.

But we have to take care of our spirits just as we take care of our bodies--in fact, if we do take good care of our spirits, we'll find that our bodies are much healthier as a result.  As will be our relationships with others, our work performance, our state of mind, and so much more.  Our stress levels will be lower and our outlook on life will be more positive, leading to even greater improvements in all aspects of our lives.

If you resent someone or something, you are doing no harm at all to the object of your resentment.  You are, however, harming your own body and spirit in a significant way, holding yourself back from improving yourself and your life.  Spiritual illness shows itself in physical ways, so if you can imagine a pair of resentment or anger or jealousy tweezers, use them to pull that negative part of yourself right out.  Your spirit--and your body--will appreciate the effort.

Questions to ponder:

1.  What kinds of things might be harming you spiritually?  What do you do about them?

2.  How does your spiritual state affect your emotional and physical states?

3.  What can you do to improve your spiritual condition?

For further thought:

Eugene Carman

Rhodes' slave!  Selling shoes and gingham,
Flour and bacon, overalls, clothing, all day long
For fourteen hours a day for three hundred and thirteen days
For more than twenty years.
Saying "Yes'm" and "Yes, sir" and "Thank you"
A thousand times a day, and all for fifty dollars a month.
Living in this stinking room in the rattle-trap "Commercial."
And compelled to go to Sunday School, and to listen
To the Rev. Abner Peet one hundred and four times a year
For more than an hour at a time,
Because Thomas Rhodes ran the church
As well as the store and the bank.
So while I was tying my neck-tie that morning
I suddenly saw myself in the glass:
My hair all gray, my face like a sodden pie.
So I cursed and cursed:  You damned old thing!
You cowardly dog!  You rotten pauper!
You Rhodes' slave!  Till Roger Baughman
Thought I was having a fight with some one,
And looked through the transom just in time
To see me fall on the floor in a heap
From a broken vein in my head.

Edgar lee Masters

from Spoon River Anthology

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