It seems like such common sense when written, but not every person will so contently agree, especially when that person is hurting. It’s easy to think of every putrid, gut-wrenching offense of a person who’s wronged for you. Who has wronged you lately? Mother? Father? Brother? Ex-boyfriend? Ex-best friend? In part, your thoughts could be well-justified. “Nobody’s perfect,”, as the mantra goes. But what do these putrid thoughts gain you? Do they bring you healing and peace? And are they realistic to who this sneering person is? Can you give a person the benefit of the doubt? Even if it is so little?
When George Lucas was developing Star Wars for the first time, he based the dark, looming, mechanical force of nature known as Darth Vader off his father. How many of us have a Darth Vader in our own lives? I know I do. However, not even Vader was evil incarnate. There’s another side to a human being most can’t see. Most will even refuse to see it. The most toxic people in your world have a story. They are not the Darth Sidiouses of this world. Even the most vile people in the world — psychopaths, sociopaths, and persons with narcissistic personality disorder — never looked at a big button in the clouds labeled “mental disorder” when they were babies before being whisked away by storks. They never chose their disorder.
A very wise man, who had a father with NPD like someone I knew, said to me once
“Everyone is given the best that they got,”.
In more enraged moments, this is certainly a hard pill to swallow for some. But when someone’s rage subsides, in the quieter moments, perhaps that person (be it you or I) can list even one positive attribute about the person they hate most. Even more. And then a fuller picture of that person can emerge. One person might gossip, but said person might be young with little understanding. Another might break your heart, but said person may have previous commitments he or she cannot break. Another might have abused you, but perhaps that person was abused when he was four and onward and knows nothing about love.
When one begins to gain understanding over the person he or she hates most, even just a little, the path to heal the heart of hatred becomes more feasible. Forgiveness (which isn’t necessarily reconciliation) becomes a lot more of a tangible goal.
When we hold onto hatred, we think that those who are being hated are the ones suffering. When in actuality, the one who is suffering the most is the one doing the hating. Learn to forgive. Forgiveness is not always a feeling, it’s not reconciling, and is not forgetting the pain that person wrought on you. If you are a believer in Christ like I am, forgiveness is often an act of faith. God tells us to, not just because it is just, but because it is best for us. And as hard as it might be (believers and otherwise), it means learning to let go — going through a process of letting go.
And when the “Satanization” of that person stops, you might just find yourself a happier person.
God bless, God first,