confucius: to be wronged is nothing

Every Wednesday I share another’s words of wisdom, exploring how I can apply this wisdom to my own life. Please join in the conversation and share your thoughts in the comments section. Because if you’re anything like me, you have a lot to learn in this life. 

To be wronged is nothing unless you continue to remember it.


The holidays are upon us. We’re visiting with family. We’re communing with friends. We’re trying to make sense of the waning year, moving on and making progress, and crying a little or a lot while we’re at it. It seems to be a time of turmoil in so many lives. Do you feel it?

Human beings are adept at hurting one another, holding grudges, spinning false tales, breaking trust. Getting along can be almost impossible, even with the people you love the most. And then there’s the people you want to stay far away from, the ones you want to edit out of your life, but cannot for some reason or another.

How do we deal with those people? As discussed here on Monday,  everything matters. We become that which we surround ourself with, so we must choose loving relationships and healthy habits. But no one has the ultimate control, people will hurt you, you won’t escape this life unscathed. You might not even escape the holidays unscathed.

So what can we do? We can let go of the suffering. Only when we hold onto pain do we bathe in it, eating and drinking and sleeping with our sorrows. Confucius is right. We can stop the suffering by choosing not to remember it, a feat as contradictory to our nature as turning away from a chocolate truffle when the craving strikes.

It takes willpower. And the more you do it, the easier it becomes. In my own life, I need to practice the art of letting go, choosing simply not to think about the ways I’ve been wronged. It doesn’t make the scar disappear, but it can stop the bleeding.



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