It’s hard to develop a balanced sense of self-worth in a culture that promotes and rewards egomaniacal thinking and a sense of entitlement.
Because we live in an era of unprecedented narcissistic entitlement, it’s harder than ever to see this precious life we enjoy for what it fundamentally is: an unearned gift.
The takers and users among us aren’t just arrested in their character development. They’re spiritually arrested, too. Humble gratitude for the gift of life is a linchpin of healthy character.
To be genuinely open, we have to accept the inevitability of pain. And if we don’t transform any pain we do experience, we’re certain to transmit it.
Waking up can take many forms. For some, it’s a sudden event. For others, it’s more of a process. And it can happen in various ways. Sometimes, it’s born of intense joy and passion. We’re truly jolted into awareness. But more often, it comes on the heels of great emotional pain. In either case, we lose our smaller, false self. And in the process, we discover our true self, our soul.
I must say, I’ve fallen in love with Puerto Rico. I’ve come to love the beauty of the land and the indomitable character of its people. Largely poor by our economic standards, Puerto Ricans are truly rich in spirit. In the midst of hardship, life still flourishes – a testament to both its resilience and preciousness.
Spiritual growth and character growth go hand-in-hand. And such growth is all about relationship – to ourselves, others, and our concept of a “higher power.”
A person who’s been converted doesn’t relate the way they used to. Their whole manner of seeing and doing is different. It’s an observable change. And one that’s consistent over time.
To be of sound character, we must be more than just morally good. We have to be intimately connected to the source of good. Spiritually awakened, we see things differently and are moved to conduct our lives differently.
Manipulative narcissists are covert-aggressors who use various, subtle tactics to charm, disarm, and otherwise take advantage. Playing on your emotions, many find the game of getting the better of you amusing and satisfying. They enjoy “toying” with you.