There is balance in everything – the yin and yang, darkness and light – but even as I know this, S-O-M-E-T-I-M-E-S bearing witness to karmic debris is still shocking, especially when it has followed something pleasant.
Yesterday my neighbor Kanika took me to the post office to send away a pair of Chinese Art Deco carpets to their new owner in Texas while my presence in the car allowed her to practice in anticipation of her forthcoming road test for her driver’s license – balance indeed. But upon our arrival a young woman (perhaps 19 years of age) was screaming at the top of her lungs, dropping F-bombs like no one’s business, stomping her feet, flaying her arms and throwing things at the post clerk who had been waiting on her. The most shocking aspect of this was “you wouldn’t treat me like this if I was white!” (I have removed the expletives and made this sentence standard English for the sake of readability.) From the multi-ethnicity rest of us in line (Asian, Indian, Caucasian, Arab, Black and Latino) could be heard a shocked and audible exhale of our collective breaths. Her anger was the result of spending her entire time at the counter on her cell phone with the result of not correctly filling out the post office box request form so the clerk asked her to step aside and fill out a new one so that he could take care of those of us waiting in line – she went ballistic. I have thought a lot about this the last 24 hours – and ultimately two things are clear to me. The first is a patent lack of personal responsibility of this young woman for how her not focusing on a task before her resulted in her own inability to accomplish the reason she was at the post office in the first place. The resulting frustration and anger being taken out on a (very nice male) civil servant who was still shaking and visibly stressed when he came to wait on me (in turn impacting my energy so completely that by the end of our transaction my hands were shaking) was hers alone “to own”. The second is more of question – what could possibly have happened in this woman’s life to make her so angry at such a young age? For that, I think there is likely some pretty heavy duty Karmic debris hanging on her and only she will be able to free herself. Will she even come to understand this and take the steps necessary to come to a place of peace, compassion and kindness? Obviously I will never know.
But it is curious to me hinging on a snippet of conversation related to Kanika’s forthcoming driving test about the definition of aggressive driving and subsequently road rage that we should almost immediately encounter rage of any kind. In the hours since I recalled the words, recently expressed, by a very wise man I know:
“You know what, I know this problem because, in mariner universe, a lot of people decide to start in boat for a world tour or something like that… and some of this people leave France to forget, to leave the problem….but, in reality, if you leave something without project for future, without find a solution to your problem, wham you go back or one day, the problems go back and bigger….”
Human beings are all too susceptible to avoidance. I had sort of ‘run away to the sea’ when I went through my divorce (1989) becoming the operations manager for the HMS Bounty (then owned by Turner Broadcasting Systems in Atlanta). Removing myself from the pain I was experiencing, and being remarkably naïve for a 29 year old woman, didn’t fix the hurt and disillusionment. But my actions, my leaving Western New York in the first place, served as an innocent catalyst for the haunting (and often hunted) aspect I have experienced by a man I met during my first weeks working for Turner and last seen in person in 1990 or 91. A man who has never been able to let go of knowing me despite his (now) married state, despite my expressed desire for him to leave me alone, and to stop contacting me via various social media outlets. I didn’t understand, still do not in some regard, how a couple of museum visits, the gifts of a scarf I desired and (beautiful but) unsolicited lingerie, and a few shared meals could so negatively impact my life for nearly 24 years. I have come to own this, reluctantly, having accepted ‘there is always a bill to pay’ but it seems a steep one. I express extreme gratitude that my particular karmic debris isn’t tied to violence though the stalker-like behavior is unsettling with each new contact he makes. The result of this experience has made me thoroughly question my judgment of even speaking to a man for years because I couldn’t foresee the impact of doing so, none of us being blessed with functional crystal balls, and in so isolating myself I have been left without the normal joys and comfort of finding a loving partner with whom to share life.
Yes, we drag cosmic flotsam around with us like the Peanuts character Pig-Pen and his dust cloud but owning those problems and solving them rather than foisting them onto others or embracing avoidance would make our entire very connected world a much more lovely and loving. Go do something nice today – be a catalyst for ending karmic debris!
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