The Fool — Spiritual Message of the Day
This is such a simple directive. It’s so clear, so succinct. So why is it so hard for us to do this? Whenever someone does something we don’t understand, we tend to think the worst of them instead of giving them the benefit of the doubt.
She didn’t call when she said she would?
. How inconsiderate.
He cut in line?
. What a jerk.
Sometimes the other person has a good reason or excuse for doing something, but all too often we assume they don’t. We think ill of them. Yes, sometimes the person actually is being a jerk, but we typically don’t know which is the case. Appearances can be deceiving, and good explanations aren’t always right at hand.
Here are a few examples.
One time a friend was supposed to come over, but he never showed up. He didn’t even call to cancel. What a jerk, right? Boy, did I ever cuss him out in my head! As it turns out, though, he got in an accident on the way over, and this was back in the dark ages before cell phones so he couldn’t call. When I finally found out what had happened (and after expending a lot of energy reviling my friend) I discovered who the real jerk was.
Another time, I was in line to get a ticket at an event, but there was a problem when I got to the cashier. He told me to go somewhere else to resolve that problem, and then when I came back, I should return directly to him to get my ticket without getting back in line again. When I came back and did that, a woman walking by observed this and loudly said to the friend she was with that “some people must think they don’t have to obey the rules.” She was quite indignant and hurtful. But besides hurting me, she caused herself agitation, which she would not have felt if she had assumed innocence.
Finally, I recently found a wonderful video illustration of this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zatc9h-y960
Again, if we have to assume something, we should assume innocence. It’s the best place to start.
Try it for at least a day.
You can check back daily to read this online “day book” of spiritual advice from the cards, or you can see these articles collected by clicking on the Tarot’s Daily Spiritual Message category tag, or you can click on the “Email Subscription” link in the column on the right-hand side of your screen.