When your sparring partner scratches or head-butts you, you don’t then make a show of it, or protest, or view him wish suspicion or as plotting against you. And yet you keep an eye on him, not as an enemy or with suspicion, but with a healthy avoidance.”
(Marcus Aurelius, Meditations, 6.20)
Let me repeat that: lots of scrapes and dings… never personal.
Each day of our lives is like our time in the dojo, like our time spent in training. We move through the world trying out our well-worn (or newly-learned) “social aikido”, and like our partners in the dojo, we certainly don’t mean to do harm… even though, at times, some harm happens.
Again, it’s not personal.
Finally, even though from our perspective it’s us who are the recipients of the benefits of the training… our partners are training, too. They’re learning (probably from our screwing up) right there along with us. Side by side in the mix.
See, it’s how we interpret what we receive that makes it what it is. Most of the time, a scratch is just a scratch… and there’s no need to make it out to me anything more than what it is.
… but still keep the head up and eyes open around the scratcher and head-butter, no?
(See y’all tomorrow)