When you spend some time applying your mind to it, you’ll eventually come to realize that the whole of society is built around the basic idea of “don’t offend or get offended.”
I’ve written a good few posts on this that you can go back to if you want more detail, but it’s not a stretch to see that "not offending someone" is the basic premise of the way our society is structured.
Don’t say or do anything to piss someone off or you’ll get excluded, shunned, ignored, abandoned, rejected, avoided, shamed, blamed, name called and so much more.
And it happens in our personal lives and at a larger scale - but it’s all just still the same premise: someone got offended about something someone else said or did.
So…. two things happen in our day-to-day lives and conversations in order to facilitate this basic rule….
First, we skirt around, or avoid, the truth as we see it, and secondly, we aim to include positive feedback - compliments or nice stuff the person will (hopefully) like hearing - into the conversation to soften the blow.
So we’re not only working to avoid saying things that may potentially offend or upset the person, we’re also working to say extra things that serve only to prevent the risk that we may offend someone through our inaction, e.g. not asking about something that interests/is important to them (inaction) makes them believe you don’t care about them (offense).
But life is bound by time…. and so every interaction or experience you go through is limited by time.
It’s also limited because of your attention span - first by how much time you can afford to give away on attention to this particular aspect, and second by how much information or experience you can tolerate taking on, within a certain period of time.
To understand this second one, think about something you’ve studied or read…. past a point there’s so much information that you’ve absorbed (so many individual little details and facts that make up the big picture), that your brain cannot absorb anymore. So you put the material down and take a break and let it all coalesce.
A second easy example is binge watching a series… past a point the seasons blur into each other, because you are holding so many details and pieces of information that it all starts to blur together. So while you’re watching season 3 or 4, you can remember clearly what happened in each season, but by season 9 or 10, you’re often saying stuff like “Oh, did that happen so early in the show already?”
So in any conversation or interaction therefore, you have a limited of facts that can be exchanged - let’s call that unit of measurement “sentences”.
And we need a measure for time as well, and we can also make our measure of time in “sentences”.
So if each sentence takes three seconds, you can fit 20 sentences into a one-minute long conversation.
So in an equal dialogue, a one-minute long conversation would therefore equal 10 sentences each. That’s perfectly fair right?
So now… you have one minute (ten sentences each side), to call someone up out of the blue and give them bad news…. their wife is dead.
Literally one minute…. that’s all you can get signal for. So 10 sentences each side for a total of 20 sentences.
Now societal rules dictate a few things…. you must introduce yourself and greet the person (polite).
So let’s get those sentences…
1 - Hi
2 - Hi.Is this John?
3 - Yes. Who is this?
4 - Paul - your wife’s boss.
If we just add in the obligatory how are you’s to make sure the person feels that you have recognized their importance, our tally goes up further…
6 - How are you?
7 - I’m well thanks and you?
8 - I’m very well thanks.
Now we can get onto business… after we of course “couch" and cater to their emotional needs.
9 - How can I help you?
10 - I’m afraid I’m calling with bad news.
11 - You might want to prepare yourself.
12 - Is someone there with you?
13 - Can you get to someone?
14 - No, I’m afraid I can’t.
15 - Is no one around you?
16 - I’m afraid not.
17- Then I’m not sure I should tell you.
18 - Tell me what?
19 - It’s bad news I’m afraid.
20 - It is?
And because of the length of some of the sentences, we couldn’t even make it perfectly fair for each side to get an equal turn.
Being polite wastes time - and it is such a huge trap of ego, because it keeps you so busy that you never get to the actual point of what you want to say.
"I’m so sorry to have to say this, and I don’t want to hurt your feelings, and you’re such a wonderful person, and you’re really great with the kids, and I don’t want to have to do this, but you know my hands are tied, and I don’t really have a say…. but you’re fired.”
Huh? I’m wonderful and great but you’re firing me…. because you have to? This smells like a lawsuit.
Or how about….
“Look you’re a great guy, but I’m not sure that I am really looking for anything at the moment.” “Oh that’s okay - we can just be fuckbuddies and friends.”
It would have been simpler to just say… "I don’t like you. I am not attracted." It would have gotten the point across.
But instead you’re lying in bed, next to a snoring pot belly, trying to convince yourself why you like this person and chose to be here for the bad sex and no sleep.
Lessons and learning are no different….
When I can say… "you’re being lazy there", and "you’re acting entitled there" and "you’re being overly dramatic and should reign yourself in", that’s pointing out the patterns.
When I can do it in one sentence, it saves massive amounts of time.
When people are screaming about being offended, it’s because they are operating from the premise that whatever they hear will make them “immediately happy in the now moment and they will agree with it right now.”
But how does someone make you feel better about the fact that you are hearing about a death?
How does someone couch the fact that your greatest point of leverage right now is to stop being lazy and work harder? We’re all lazy - it’s not an insult, it’s a description of what the problem is.
If you are being dramatic, it means that you are creating drama. Journeyers create drama once they start going numb - it happens because they need the extremes of emotion in order to still feel something - and to have something to fix so that they can heal themselves and feel better (experience a joy surge or “up" energetic period).
If you are acting entitled, it’s because humans are inherently selfish. You will always be working on lessons of entitlement as you move closer to God.
These words describe a state of being or doing… a state of action or inaction…. something you have control over to change.
An insult or offense is when someone calls you an idiot and tells you that your beliefs are wrong and you should die or be raped. And that’s the kind of thing that happens and what we try to prevent in group…
“Oh I’m not going to bother talking to you. Clearly it’s as much use as talking to a tree!” (This one was real and clearly the guy has never experienced speaking to a tree lol).
Or… “Oh I can’t be bothered to waste my time on you.” “I can see now you are a terrible person to be around/group to be in.”
An insult or offense attacks the person - the identity. It labels them, categorizes them, and can wish them harm, or aims to make them scared so that they will go away - be scared into silence.
Feedback points out a pattern or aspect that you have control over. You can stop being dramatic or lazy or entitled - you have choice over these.
Feedback says… “I have to be quick. I’m sorry to be brief. Prepare yourself… your wife has died. Someone will be in touch with you shortly with further details.”
It’s rude by societal standards, and forthright, but it’s efficient and addresses more of the issue.
“You are lazy and entitled and you need to work harder. You’re treating God like a servant.”
“You’re being dramatic by not only engaging in this person’s drama, but by furthering it by telling me halfway around the world and making my day about it too.”
“I don’t want advice from you.”
“I am happy with where I stand.”
“You may not like this. It will probably offend you.”
These are all feedback.
“You’re an idiot and you know nothing and you don’t deserve to call yourself advanced” is offense.
“You’re not going to like this but your journey is at a point of all-loving and that is a marker point for the group - you probably don’t belong here” is feedback.
I don’t waste time with offense - and you shouldn’t either.
Once you start doing this, you will notice how much time you’ve wasted and delayed by getting offended at the universe when lessons first presented themselves. How your resistance to accepting that offense was all that stood in your way of breaking through.
It’s way easier to write “this is what I see honestly” than it is to "create a whole long, flowery piece, that reminds you how wonderful you are, and tells you what a glorious person you are and makes you feel all wonderful about yourself - so that you completely miss it, or are shattered to pieces - when the person suddenly throws in an insult.”
If you’re lazy and entitled, then do something about it. And if someone pointed it out because you couldn’t see it, thank them. Your offense is what was stopping you from seeing it in the first place anyway.
It saves time to cut out the bullshit and get straight to the point.
If I could’ve done that with this post, I could’ve just said, we choose to offend you over withholding the truth from you. Prepare to be offended.
And because you’re ADVANCED and an EQUAL… we also expect you to know how to basically handle your in the moment emotional responses, and how to get past being offended.
Surely you’ve already been offended a zillion times by the lessons you’ve had to accept already?
Can’t wait to hear the responses….
Peace & light xo