I’m included here. I have found all the ways I erect barriers, like barbed wire fences with no trespassing signs. That image comes to mind as does medieval knights going on crusades. Face it, we all search for enemies and even sabotage our relationships with well-intentioned friends and colleagues. We ask for help, it arrives and we find something wrong with the help. We criticize people with good intentions because their intentions don’t go far enough, as far as we’re concerned. We vote for leaders and then when they’re in office, we rally against them before they’ve even had a chance to prove themselves. Then we form groups against this or that and turn a smug look to anyone who doesn’t join our fight.
I have an autograph from English folksinger-socialist Billy Bragg, “Keep fighting the good fight,” but what is a good fight and why are we fighting amongst ourselves over ideologies and lifestyles while we annihilate the planet with our collective negativity? What can we all agree on? How do we stop feeding the “enemy” with our negativity and low-vibrational fearful thinking? These questions keep me awake at night while I work on healing my own defensive behaviors. I run into defensiveness everywhere and my muscles tighten to the point where I feel like screaming. These are my projections playing out in the world, at least I know this.
Defensiveness shows up in the following ways:
Starting a non-profit organization in the deficit mode of against this or that.
Ranting or complaining about a situation without accepting any solutions.
Focusing on problems instead of solutions.
A can’t do it attitude
Watching the news then phoning your loved ones and lowering their mood.
Not accepting help that is offered because, you think there’s an ulterior motive.
Low self-esteem and feelings suspicious of friends, colleagues and strangers.
Applying for jobs you don’t want and then ranting about the employer’s ethics.
Spreading dualism through an us verses them attitude.
Acting smug and self-righteous (there’s a barbed wire fence).
One-sided conversations and not allowing someone to get a word in edgewise because they might disagree with you and you feel it’s your job to educate them.
Thinking you have all the answers and not questioning your own logic ever.
Refusing to grow, expand and evolve past outworn behavior.
Arguing with others who don’t share your opinions.
Manipulating and controlling others
Spreading the not-enough-to-go-around myth.
Tension in the jaw, neck and shoulders.
And the worst behavior of all, declaring war as a peace effort (yeah, that makes sense).
Now that we know what defensiveness looks like, let’s make the effort to heal our part of it. Develop trust and cooperate with others. Agree to disagree when ideologies don’t match up. We’re all faces of the same unconditionally loving God. Understand that everyone is in the right place to play this world drama and only compassion and love have the power to awaken those souls asleep at the wheel. Only love and gentleness heals fear. We wouldn’t scream at a frightened child, would we? Only love heals destruction and wrong choices. It’s time we all grow up. It’s time we all wake up and share in this grand earth experiment. Stop feeding fear and tear down the barbed wire fences with no trespassing plastered upon them.
Note, the idea for this blog post seemed more eloquent at 3:00 a.m. last night, then I experienced a busy day, losing most of the thread. I feel that you’ll still get the idea and of course, add any defensive behavior you have witnessed to the list.