We Develop Abusive Habits

A Spirit Teacher shares His understanding of timeless wisdom
as it applies to human nature in every situation and in every
culture; past, present, and future.

How can wisdom be timeless?

Because human nature is also timeless, in that it is grounded
in emotion.

That may be true, but …

It is true.

How does timeless wisdom apply to abusive behaviour.

Timeless wisdom inspires healthy emotions, thoughts, and
actions. Abuse of others or self is neither healthy nor
life-sustaining.

Should we forgive those who abuse us?

How can abuse be forgiven? That would be an unhealthy
response. What good purpose would it serve? None at all.
In fact, it might even encourage more abuse.

Abuse, He tells me, is unhealthy behaviour regardless of
who is abusing whom, or even whether the one being abused
accepts ill treatment. That would express self-abuse.

How then can we respond in a healthy way to abuse when
we can’t protect ourselves from it?

We make choices and perhaps past choices helped to create
the abusive situation.

Why do you speak of an abusive situation and not of
an abusive person?

There are none.

Please explain.

We develop abusive habits or we don’t.

An an addiction?

Yes.

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8 thoughts on “We Develop Abusive Habits

  1. This subject is terribly difficult, and I’m in no way certain that I’m at all qualified to respond. If I may though, I’d like to offer just one thought to certain readers of your article Jean – inadequate though this thought almost certainly is.

    We invariably identify the thoughts and actions of others with what we conceive of as an enduring self-entity who has agency over those same thoughts and actions. It’s this entity of selfhood that we may consider (or not), to forgive.

    Thoughts and actions are all conditioned though, meaning they are caused by experiences prior to their occurrence. The apparent agency (doer-ship), of the other, whilst in its effects may be terribly real enough, is in fact illusory.

    In morally judging the thoughts and actions of others, we reflect with an entire reasonableness. To then project those phenomena onto a self-entity is purposeless; it is a failure to understand the depth of the others’ situation.

    [Would any readers please forgive me if this sounds cold and analytical, as mere philosophical musing? Thank you.]

  2. Dear Hariod, I wish you could understand how sensitive an issue abuse is to me, personally, or at least it was, for perhaps ten thousand years. Spirit seems to understand this reluctance, on my part, to channel (many will likely see that as a cop-out for accepting responsibility for my own thoughts and words, but I accept whatever judgement some others might make. I would be a physical target for Him and His message of Wisdom, Love, and Understanding).
    But, also, I have come to understand from Him that clear social rules of order are necessary to the survival of any social society. Respect for generally accepted laws that impose penalties against individuals, holding them (us) responsible for individual behaviour.
    Forgiveness is a vague term that may mean different things to different people. It does not, nor should it, excuse anyone from paying a price for harm they have done to others.
    I know that sounds cold, but the “letter of the law” does not necessarily conflict with “the spirit of the law”.
    The letter is written in law books. The spirit is our understanding of why the letter is necessary to group survival.
    The good news is, that neither the letter nor the spirit is written in stone. They adapt (change) as we do, or they can. Sometimes laws become entrenched and enforced long after they reflect any meaningful purpose. Then they must change or be changed.
    Revolutions arise out of intolerable conditions, whether they be personal, group, or national revolts. When abuse of power reaches a certain threshold then it is too late for concessions to be accepted. That is the tragedy of both personal and national abuse and oppression.
    There comes a time when a line has been crossed and no concessions are acceptable. It’s just too late.
    And, yet, the same concessions that are no longer acceptable, might once have been. But, as the saying goes,
    “Once upon a time will never come again”.
    I love your comments, and welcome them. You and any other of my (?) readers surely have thoughts on the subject that have passed me by, or I have missed. And, we will each be bringing lived experience to the table,, or desktop.
    Love,
    Jean

    • As I suggested above, on this subject Jean, I have very few qualifications to speak. My offering is therefore understandably narrow and dryly philosophical in one sense, it being devoid of the consideration of all-too-human feelings that the abused will suffer. Still, there have been those close to me who have suffered terrible abuse at the hands of their own family or others, and so I have some small sense of the damaging and invariably long-lasting after-effects. This is why it’s necessary for me to cautiously qualify my comments, whilst feeling obligated to offer something to the discussion.

      With gratitude and respect as ever, Hariod.

  3. Dear Hariod, you are as qualified as anyone to speak about human experiences. The problem arises, or seems to, with a “narrow and dryly philosophical” perspective. As you said, “thoughts and actions are all conditioned”. It’s the “caused by experiences prior to their occurrence” that I would question. Cause and effect are easily misunderstood to imply direct interaction. This can only be so in a controlled scientific experiment (and not really even there – that is an illusion. Past experiences strongly influence our thinking and behaviour in the present and will, to some extent, even into our future. We cannot disconnect from our past. We have to learn to accept it and understand it, and learn from it.
    Your term, “self-entity” to describe people, almost suggests that you might use it to protect yourself from personally identifying at a too emotional level with them. Perhaps, physical form is temporary, and in that sense, illusory, but it is very much real and infinitely alive in the sense that it is the projection of a unique individual spirit person, whose understanding of life itself is being developed through the experiences that human life was designed to provide.
    Compassion connects and binds us together. Pity claims separation. WE are all in this together and are, in the final essence, no more than different aspects of the same reality, Life.
    Your comments have great value. They help me, they inspire me to organize my own thoughts more clearly, to myself, as well as, hopefully, to others. All gratitude and respect must go beyond me, and beyond Spirit. He did not originate the thoughts He shares with me. Maybe they belong to all of us, at some level.
    Love,
    Jean

    • You say: ‘It’s the “caused by experiences prior to their occurrence” that I would question.’ – I don’t understand Jean, you proceed from the above statement to concur precisely with my intended meaning. We’re on the same page in that I did not ‘imply direct interaction’, so I can’t see there’s anything to question – not that it would be a problem of course; we can have friendly differences of opinion and am quite certain that in fact we do.

      You again say: ‘Your term, “self-entity” to describe people, almost suggests that you might use it to protect yourself from personally identifying at a too emotional level with them.’. I should assure you Jean, that this is not so, though the dry imagery may suggest as much – accepted. It remains the case that it is almost uniformly typical for people to be ERRONEOUSLY conceived as enduring self-entities who have agency over their thoughts and actions. This means that there’s an over-weaned tendency to regard people as constant and fixed selves that cause their own actions through the agency of this same putative self. This, in my view, is an evolutionary artefact, the error of which we struggle to shake off – or even question for that matter.

      It is difficult to avoid the potential for ambiguity in short exchanges such as this, and I think this is a good case in point Jean. Hopefully, we’ll do a little better in future exchanges!

      With gratitude and respect as ever, Hariod.

      P.S. I have to wrap this up now, I have a ton of emails to attend to – speak soon.

  4. My sincere apologies. I had no intent to offend you. How could I have been so blind. Why didn’t I see the writing on the wall. A recent Twitter tweet might have clued me in. It went, “We all see the writing on the wall. We just assume it’s meant for someone else.” I thought it was funny. I even retweeted it.
    Dear Hariod, it wasn’t until you spoke of evolution that it hit me like a ten ton truck. We were coming from opposite directions. You may see humans as rising and reaching up from nothing while I see them as having wrapped themselves in human form and then having descended from everything, in order to experience physical life for the purpose of better understanding who and what they are, and now reaching up to where they have come from..
    How to possibly reconcile the two positions? Not possible, but it is possible for us to each respect the views of the other, and I think we do.
    My experience with Spirit inspires me to trust that I am moving on a path to truth, but we can never know. So, in the final analysis, all perspectives are more or less equal.
    Sincerely,
    Jean

    • Beautifully put Jean, as ever. Just for the record, there certainly was no offence taken – as I said, just ‘friendly differences of opinion’. It would be a rather dull place and devoid of learning if we all agreed with one another!

      One danger in all this though, is that we project too much into the words of the exchanges. As far as my own words are concerned, it may be best just to take them literally and not to re-interpret. I just mean what I say, no more.

      May you be well and happy Jean, now and always.

      Hariod.

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