October 6      

Today's quotation:

To set us on a clear path, it is important to communicate well, at least with ourselves.  To know what we want, to know what we mean, and to learn to express ourselves clearly, with as little confusion as possible.  If you are confused about yourself, you can expect to be misunderstood by those around you.  You have to set your mind straight, and that is a task that no one else can undertake for you.

Rosemary Altea

Today's Meditation:

So many of us lead lives of confusion about who we are and what we want and what we expect of ourselves.  And it's little wonder, as we grow up seeing and hearing so many conflicting messages about what others expect us to be, want us to be, think we should be.  Do I want to make tons of money at work, or do I want to serve?  Should I seek revenge when someone wrongs me, or should I forgive?  Should I choose a spouse based on surface details such as looks, or should I marry someone who has the potential to make me truly happy?

I often do things that I think I want to do, only to find out later that I didn't really want to do it after all because I'm not at all happy with the outcome.  My mind wasn't straight at the outset because I wasn't really able to make a proper decision even though I should have known what the probable outcomes would be.  Sometimes I send mixed messages to others because I say that I stand for one thing, then take actions that seem to say that I stand for something else.  Perhaps I'm simply trying to please everyone instead of doing what I know to be right.

Setting our minds straight is figuring out just what we stand for and just what we believe to be true and right and just, and then acting in ways that support those beliefs.  Setting our minds straight allows us to react with balance and moderation when other people do things that we may see as wrong.  Setting our minds straight allows us to act with kindness and compassion because we're not worried about what other people will think about our actions-- we know that we're doing what we believe to be right.

Being our honest selves can be difficult in a world that so often wants us to be someone else, in a world in which the people around us have their expectations about what we should be.  Being the person we know we are is the best thing we can give to the world, though, because that's the only way that we're going to be able to use our own personal gifts and strengths to make our own personal contributions to our own corners of the world and the people in it who share it with us.

Questions to consider:

Why do so many people find it so difficult to act as their true selves?

What does it mean to not give your "honest self" to life?

Why do we tend to show the world sides of ourselves that may not be authentic or honest?

For further thought:

The greatest gift you ever give is your honest self.

Fred Rogers
The World According to Mr. Rogers

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