When Someone We Respect Behaves Badly

Do we forgive and forget? Do we condemn and punish? When respected loved ones reveal experiences of victimization and/or are exposed as sexual predators it is not possible to simply write off them off as“making a big deal out of nothing"  or “evil.”

We are facing an issue with wide implications regarding how we, as individuals and as a society, respond to all varieties of behavior that impact others in harmful ways. I am grateful to see some in leadership positions publically struggling with their response. The vacuum of partisan platitudes and pat answers provides a crack in “politics and news as usual” that may allow for a bit of the light of truth to enter into this dialogue.

The spiritual view is very clear: we are here to learn. Redemption from ignorance is not only possible it is inevitable. There is a role for everyone to play in the unfolding healing drama.

There can be:

 -Recognition that what we are experiencing is meaningful. It reveals a culture wide adulation of power, pleasure, control and ambition. It is not new, yet the current exposure is a manifestation of a growing recognition of the invalidity of these values. What is needed is continuing understanding, education and compassion. Who among us has not been seduced by ambition for power, wanting control over others and the pursuit of pleasure? While no one individual is to blame for creating these desires, we are all victims of it. We have within us the means to wake up from its hypnotic spell. In fact, this is our purpose in life.

- Regret for the harmfulness of what has been done.  The spiritual view begins and ends with beholding the innocence and purity of every individual living soul. In divine reality there are no victims or perpetrators, nothing can damage our essential goodness. Yet, in the human condition this is forgotten and ignored. Suffering is perpetuated through misunderstanding and miseducation regarding who we really are and our purpose in life. The good that is possible remains unmanifest. This is regretful.

-Reorientation to living in the context of Wholeness, where “ignorant” behavior is separated from the individuals suffering from it, whether as perpetrators, victims or both. We are not to blame for the mental pollution that has influenced us, but we are the ones who now have an opportunity to wake up from it.

Metapsychiatry offers a clear statement regarding “bad behavior” that can help us forgive our selves and others. It provides a method for reclaiming the innocence of individual being that seems defiled by the muck.

It is a universal human experience to be invaded by dreams and invalid thoughts coming from the “sea of mental garbage.” For instance, if someone manifests symptoms of power-madness, vanity, greed, contentiousness, etc., he did not produce these qualities in himself, and certainly it would not help to blame him. As long as man blames himself for his problems, or is blamed by others, he cannot be healed. For if problems had a creator, then they would be real, and Reality cannot be abolished or corrected. Reality is immutable.

Most often we are inclined to blame ourselves for our problems as if we were the originators of them. Sometimes we say, “I am guilty of thinking the wrong thoughts and I am being punished for it.” But actually this is not correct, for man cannot invent wrong thoughts to think. . . . It is helpful to realize that man is innocent. No matter how twisted he seems to be, essentially he is innocent.

-Dr. Hora: Beyond The Dream, Session 23: Innocence