We all intuitively know that people aren’t always – or even usually – what they seem to be. Or, at least, not all that they seem to be. Still, as we go about living our lives, awareness of this knowledge is typically not at the forefront of our minds. Thus, when we come across a difficult person we don’t stop to think what they going through, their personal difficulties, and how it might influence the way they are acting or behaving.
Many years ago, my favorite philosopher (My Daddy) 🙂 wrote a two-sentence saying that became the overriding philosophy and motto of “The Academy of Physical & Social Development” – the gymnasium school he founded nearly 60 years ago.
“To have a body does not make one a man (or woman).
To have a child does not make one a parent.”
On the most basic level, this simply means that there is often a lot more to a person than what meets the eye.
Have you ever come across someone and thought, “He or she has no right or reason to act the way they do. After all, they have everything. They’ve got it made. And, yet, they seem to be as miserable as anyone else. Why is that?”
In the next article, we’ll continue along this line of thought.
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If you mean by, “Made it,” that they are financially secure/independent or successful. I have found in my limited experience that Misery comes in all shapes and size and knows no socio-economic boundaries. On the flip side, neither does Peace, Grace or Love. I have seen all of these displayed on both extremes of the socio-economic scale and even on the, “Spiritual Socio-Economic scale,” You know from those folks who have gained a tremendous amount of notoriety and money from teaching and living spiritual principles.
I guess, for me, the bottom line is we are all Human or better yet, Spiritual Beings having a Human experience. And some days we are more connected to that Spiritual essence, than others and it has absolutely nothing to do with where we are financially, (although, being financially sound, certainly can aid in finding your center a whole lot faster, as to not to have to take up energy shoring up that particular structure.) But if we are unwilling or perhaps not ready to embrace our personal work, “Acting that way,” will continue to be a mode of operation, until such time, that the pain of separation that will occur within our relationships, becomes great enough to act as a catalyst for change/growth or at least nudge us enough to abide by the Golden Rule!
PS I see where you get your wicked cool wise genes from……your Daddy!…..
Great quotes from a great man, no doubt.
I do so appreciate the “to have a child does not make one a parent.” Soooooo true. And unfortunate for the opportunity–or better the invitation to be our evolving self is always present. I often believe it takes more effort to avoid stepping in than to take it on.
Enjoyed your blog this morning, Bob. I was thinking about something similar earlier this morning.
I was thinking how sometimes people have a shell like turtles, they may appear strong or weak, full of energy or to have all the answers. Then when they retreat into their shell they are nothing like that. But only they know that and sometimes the other people they let into their shell. Some are afraid to let anyone know what is on the inside. Some (not too many) are the same inside the shell and out.
Some fear that others only like them because of what is on the outside of the shell. Isn’t it possible to just allow and respect both the inside and the outside without expectations to be otherwise?
Thank you for sharing the thoughts above, and also for the blog you wrote about your Dad.
You were very fortunate to have been born to parents with this kind of mindset and attitude. You yourself have been making the most of what you absorbed as a child, by taking it further, and sharing this legacy in books, seminars and blogs such as this one, so that as many people as possible realize that they too can contribute to making this world a better place.
Hi Lauren, Shawn, Edie and Osnat,
I thank all of you for your comments, wisdom and very kind feedback. I appreciate all of you greatly!!
I don’t remember who it was that said it but their “help me deal with someone who is difficult” saying is (To youself) “They’re doing the best that they can”