Today’s blog is in response to questions raised about embracing the philosophy of “It is none of my business” and how this may or may not be related to personal responsibility, especially when it relates to advocacy, being a source of support for another or in situations where we might seek a personal vendetta. In the journey of spiritual growth and enlightenment, these are the hard questions we must all face.
Right off the bat, I want to make it very clear that I do not have all the answers…..and most of the time I’m not even sure I have ANY of the answers. That being said, the question has been raised (by my readers) about how “none of my business” relates to the call to advocacy and personal responsibility. HHHMMMM……Let’s explore.
None of my business
I have shared with my readers the philosophy of “It is none of your business” that keeps showing up in my personal journey….both in regards to my own compulsive need to plan, anticipate and know the path and outcome of my life and in regards to my tendency to carry the shadow of others (seeing others’ “faults” and thinking it is my job to fix it). Employing the mantra, “It is none of my business” allows me to let go of my tendency to worry and fret and it frees me from the inner judge and inner control freak that thinks it is my job to decide what is best for others and it is my job to make them comply with what I think is in their highest good. More importantly, embracing the attitude, “It is none of my business” opens up opportunities of time and energy to tend to myself, my own needs and my own gifts and talents, time that I used to spend worrying about outcomes and trying to control others’ journeys.
Life is not so Black and White
Here is where the question comes in, specifically the question that keeps coming up for my readers. “What if we know that someone is in a harmful, abusive, unhealthy situation? Is it still none of our business.” Embracing the mantra, “It is none of my business” does not preclude personal responsibility or a personal call to activism. If we know that someone is in a dangerous situation, compassion invites us to bring this to light. It may be as simple as letting them know that the situation is dangerous and that there are other choices. Sometimes we are called upon to be a source of support and help for others who seek to find another way. Sometimes intervention is called for. Sometimes reporting the abuse/danger to the proper authorities is necessary. These are all ways that we fulfill our call to personal responsibility and advocacy in the human journey. HOWEVER…..not everyone wants our support, not everyone wants to be healthy or to live a life-giving, joyful experience. AND…we cannot make anyone do or receive anything they do not want for themselves.
I believe that in the end, it is about inner balance. What are we worrying or obsessing about? What is causing us inner tension, anxiety, fretfulness? “It is none of my business” allows us to let go of this inner yuk. When it comes to our own journey, and the journey of others, all we can do is “plant the seeds,” then let go of our attachment to the outcome. Because in the end, we have NO CONTROL over the outcome. Neither do we have control over the choices of another. And yes, this part sucks as we watch those we love continue to make unhealthy choices (in our mind), and suffer unnecessary pain (according to our definition). And this is again where “it is none of my business” comes in handy. It allows us to let go of the inner tendency to worry about the choices of another when in truth we have no control over it.
One Final Thought
Then here was a very specific question regarding the responsibility to “report” a business professional for their lack of integrity. HHHMMMM A challenge to be sure. If a law has been broken or we have experienced a business professional doing something that has been defined as unethical by their field, yes, we have a responsibility and a right to report it. If someone has done us wrong, we have the right to no longer choose to do business with them. We have the freedom to not recommend them to another person. The temptation in situations like this, however, is to want to take personal action against the individual as a means of exercising a personal vendetta, to get revenge. This is where we are invited to trust in the law of KARMA! We are not going to make an unethical business person change their ways. We are not going to re-sculpt the moral landscape of an otherwise dishonest person. All we have in this situation is, “It is none of my business,” and the invitation to trust in karma….the universe will work it out in the end and it only takes time and energy away from our own gifts and call to dwell on the way the person has done us wrong and on thoughts of all the ways in which we hope to “set it right.” SIGH!
Where do you spend time in unnecessary worry about another’s life?
How do you balance the call to advocacy and the invitation to detachment?
Where do you project your own ideals, morals, values on another?
Where are you tempted to seek revenge against another who has personally harmed you?
Authentic Freedom Ministries