Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Bitterness - a short guide

grumble... grumble... grumble

Sufis (and everyone else really) know that getting angry is bad, but bitterness, that undercurrent of dissatisfaction rippling beneath the surface is also bad, very bad indeed. When you get angry, people know about it. So it is out in the open and can be resolved, one way or the other.

But bitterness, especially for people who are natural actors and talented in hiding their emotions, is a hot burning lava which will consume them from the inside. I do not know what is the quick fix to bitterness. Yes, of course we need to contemplate and reflect on the positives of this life, in our selves and in people around us. And we can also pray very, very hard that God might guide us away from the dark karma consuming us. Sometimes, this will take a while.

You are better than this!
So in the meantime what do we do? Well, in this situation I am guided by an old buddy of mine. He said that, "Taufiq ol' chum, when I am stricken by bitterness, I absolutely distrust my own judgment. I listen to what my bitter reflection has to say (after all, you cannot ignore it since it is inside of you), and I tell myself that I am reflecting in an appalling mood so whatever conclusion I may have is misleading and very wrong. So what my bitterness tells me to do, I shall do the exact opposite. It is not easy ignoring your own sentiments, but at this point in time such sentiments are not worthy of you. You are better that this! Some people call this a form of selflessness. It is a good trait to have."

A friend or two
"And of course.." he concluded, "It is good to have a friend or two to confide in. But no more than that. For not many people are capable of handling your emotions well. And you certainly don't want to confide in a potential shit-stirrer, no matter their best of intentions."

So my friend, if you are feeling bitter about something, do not give up on your good self and give in to these hateful emotions. Have patience, keep your silence and keep company with one or two good friends. You will get through it just fine.

Have a non-bitter day, sunshine.

wa min Allah at-taufiq

Hate has no place in Islam
Love will show the Way

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