I know when to say no and when to say yes. I take responsibility for my choices. The victim? She went somewhere else. The only one who can truly victimize me is myself, and 99 percent of the time I choose to do that no more. But I need to continue to remember the key principles: boundaries, letting go, forgiveness after feeling my feelings""not before, self-expression, loving others but loving myself, too.
For me, it's really easy to be kind to others when I remember that none of us came into this world with a manual about how to get it all right. We are ultimately a product of our biology and environment. Consequently, I choose to be compassionate with others when I consider how much painful emotional baggage we are biologically programmed to carry around. I recognize that mistakes will be made, but this does not mean that I need to either victimize myself or take your actions and mistakes personally. Your stuff is your stuff, and my stuff is my stuff.
Jill Bolte Taylor
After all, how many of our todays and of our tomorrows do we want to give our yesterdays? It is one thing to be victimized by another. It is quite another to victimize ourselves because we cannot learn from the past or forgive. Those who choose to live in the past, to live in the land of regret and complaint, do so at the sacrifice of their todays and their tomorrows.
John Lewis Lund
We are all implicated when we allow other people to be mistreated. An absence of compassion can corrupt the decency of a community, a state, a nation. Fear and anger can make us vindictive and abusive, unjust and unfair, until we all suffer from the absence of mercy and we condemn ourselves as much as we victimize others. The closer we get to mass incarceration and extreme levels of punishment, the more I believe it's necessary to recognize that we all need mercy, we all need justice, and-perhaps-we all need some measure of unmerited grace.
As blacks, we need not be afraid that encouraging moral development, a conscience and guilt will prevent social action. Black children without the ability to feel a normal amount of guilt will victimize their parents, relatives and community first. They are unlikely to be involved in social action to improve the black community. Their self-centered personalities will cause them to look out for themselves without concern for others, black or white.
James P. Comer
I've also represented people who have committed terrible crimes but nonetheless struggle to recover and to find redemption. I have discovered, deep in the hearts of many condemned and incarcerated people, the scattered traces of hope and humanity - seeds of restoration that come to astonishing life when nurtured by very simple interventions. Proximity has taught me some basic and humbling truths, including this vital lesson: Each of us is more than the worst thing we've ever done. My work with the poor and incarcerated has persuaded me that the opposite of poverty is not wealth; the opposite of poverty is justice. Finally, I've come to believe that the true measure of our commitment to justice, the character of our society, our commitment to the rule of law, fairness, and equality cannot be measured by how we treat the rich, the powerful, the privileged, and the respected among us. The true measure of our character is how we treat the poor, the disfavored, the accused, the incarcerated, and the condemned. We are all implicated when we allow other people to be mistreated. An absence of compassion can corrupt the decency of a community, a state, a nation. Fear and anger can make us vindictive and abusive, unjust and unfair, until we all suffer from the absence of mercy and we condemn ourselves as much as we victimize others. The closer we get to mass incarceration and extreme levels of punishment, the more I believe it's never to recognize that we all need mercy, we all need justice, and - perhaps - we all need some measure of unmerited grace.