Last week I wrote about how easy it is to judge others, even when we don't mean to. I got a lot of feedback on that post and I was glad to see that the struggles I face are familiar to others. I definitely think this is a subject worth revisiting. Zen Buddhism teaches me to be detached, not judge anyone, not take anything personally. I can certainly see myself progressing but it's much easier said than done, even when I'm aware. One thing I do know is that The Universe will continue presenting me with the same situation until I learn the lesson at hand. I'm getting much closer.
Earlier this week I put an ad on Craigslist to sell my old iPhone. I got a response within 30 minutes. We exchanged a few emails, the person (with a gender neutral name) asking if it was still available and then if I would go down on the price. I replied that I would be willing to take less if no one else was interested in the phone at my asking price. The response I got was this "Ohh. Cause I'm a poor high schooler with no job and it's tough getting 100$". My first thought was "Are you freaking kidding me?" It's so easy for me to immediately project my values and experiences onto this teenager and his/her parents: When I was in high school I worked, it's summer so why isn't/he/she working, I never had anything as nice as an iPhone, etc. I didn't respond to the email right away because it wasn't necessary. Today I was able to write and explain that I'd sold the phone for my asking price. I believe that all people/things/situations come in to our lives for a reason, for either me or the other person to learn from. This wasn't a big deal but it was a nice little reminder and I wagged my finger at myself "There you go again..." I don't know anything about this kid or his/her family or their situation. The world surely is different than when I was in high school, almost twenty years ago. I bet it's even tougher than it was back then, now that there's social media and cyber bullying. I've often said I can't imagine what school would have been like for me if FaceBook had existed. All the teasing and cliques are probably magnified many times over. The only thing I envy is that nowadays kids can do research online instead of lugging around those old encyclopedias!
One thing I've really enjoyed about this blogging challenge is that it has changed the ways I look at my day to day life. When something happens I think "How could I write about that?" I've taken to carrying a notebook with me at all times. I even tuck a tiny one in the waistband of my shorts when I walk the dog because I never know when inspiration will strike! I like that I can take a minor event, like the email exchange yesterday and share it with people to start a discussion. What would you think if you got that message? What do you assume about people?