Sunday, January 12, 2014

Enjoying being Offended - Part 2

We were driving along when my mom apologized to me. She was apologizing for having sounded disrespectful of my religious beliefs in a conversation that had occurred over the holidays. I couldn't think what comment she was referring to. (Having thought about it now there was maybe one comment she made that was a little sarcastic, but that was nothing to the full debating tool box that my sister and I were using. It by far the best time I had that holiday visit.)
She say she didn't want me to think that she disapproved of my spiritual path. I say I had not been offended. We had mutually incompatible ideas about proper spiritual paths and as obviously she would disagree with my choices, and I was perfectly fine with her expressing that.
She said no, she really thought how I was pursuing my spiritual life was fine. I didn't think that could be the case and we want back and forth on that with restocking to her thesis that she really thought my religious pursuits were fine and good as long as I was happy with them.
We went on and had a fun meal at The Counter where I had fun ordering just what I wanted and nothing else. (The Counter specializes in letting you build your own burger rather than offering a limited number of pre chooses combination that I always need them to hold something on.)
But the apology stayed with me. Before the apology I had not been offended at all. But now I found I was. I did feel hurt and disrespected that my ideas were not being taken seriously and that my mother didn’t care whether I was basing my life on the truth or a lie.
Later a practical matter came up where my opinion on the subject was related to the consequences of my religious beliefs. My mother was quite dismissive about my opinion. And I found myself quite hurt by it, not because of the dismissing of my opinion but because it showed how thoroughly she dismissed my beliefs as real beliefs that would have real consequences in all other areas of my life.
This is part of engaging with people and really relating to them on a deep level. being ready for their beliefs to be so different that you are hurt by how they see you, and being ready to deal with that.


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