“It is a very easy thing to break and egg. How easy is it to put one back together?”
This may come as a surprise, but I am no buddha; if I am, I have no knowledge of it. (These two statements, given with wry grimace and tongue shoved into the cheek, are nothing more than acknowledgement and admission of the reality of my own humanity; as if such a thing need be acknowledged or admitted when it is so readily apparent.)
This said, my orientation and efforts in this life are very tightly focused and honed on doing as little harm as I can, rendering benefit when I can, and being wise enough to either know the difference or to refuse to engage if and when I cannot tell what harm or benefit I may contribute. The best analogy I know for this perspective is the one quoted at the beginning of this post, as given by a venerated Buddhist teacher.
While I would like to think I hold the level of compassion, neutrality, and kindness to fully and completely forgive others, it is very often not the case. Thankfully, the entries upon the sad little list of the unforgiven are very few; it is still a recurring sadness to me that I have such a list at all.
Most people would assume such a list is an indication of “people that I hate” but frankly, that is a woefully incomplete understanding of things. With the exception of one entry to the pitiful list, it is a listing of people who, because of my own inabilities, I am, quite literally, incapable of imagining being able to benefit or avoiding harming.
I suppose it looks the same to any observer, and maybe there really is no difference but that I make it one. Regardless, if I as much as suspect my presence or engagement is harmful, I do not permit it. When (not if, alas) I realize I’ve made a mistake of judgement in this area, I withdraw.
It looks intolerant or obstinate at times. I accept this is so.
It seems uncaring or rude at times. I accept this is so.
It appears that I am cold, harsh, or unyielding at times. I accept this is so.
I may not express them well at times, I may occlude them with any number of emotional flavors at times, or I may so completely miss including them specifically that none of the above can possibly look like it was part of the consideration.
This in no way means it is not, and I accept that this will be misunderstood, disbelieved, or rejected as well.
My intentions and motivations are my own; no other owns them, may lay claim to them, or can in any way make of them other than what they are within me. Others may choose to attempt any of these things and may call them all “real”, “true”, or “known” of me, and that is entirely their right and, for them, as “real”, “true”, or “known” as they can experience.
It is not, however, objectively so, nor is it in any manner obligatory upon me but that I choose or allow it to be so.
Point of fact: I very rarely so choose or allow.