The Mirror: A Place Where Real Change Can Begin
“I fought viciously to destroy an enemy that I couldn’t see. When I looked in the mirror, I found the enemy was me. I alone was to blame for my anguish and shame. Now I clearly see my enemy and the pains encumbered, I’ll conquer him. His days are numbered.” This was a short poem that I wrote shortly after an extensive self-evaluation. During this evaluation I wanted to come to grips with my faults so that I could begin to deliberately change them.
It is easy to see the fault of others, but difficult to see our own. We cajole and attempt to manipulate or force others to conform to our views. The conclusion is that they are wrong and we are right. The dilemma is further perpetuated because both sides are pointing the finger. Until both parties can stand back and take a good look within, there can be no true resolution. Even if one side is forced to bow the knee, you can count on the problem once again resurfacing.
Being the mirror is easy, but looking in the mirror is hard. Looking in the mirror requires us to see ourselves for who we truly are. Could it be that we are the main cause of the problem or a least part of it? Is there change that we can implement that can start the healing process? As Gandhi stated, “Any change that you wish to see in the world, start with yourself and healing will multiply.”
It is true, we can’t change others, but changing ourselves can influence change in others. Ask yourself in earnest, “What am I doing to contribute to the problem.” When I was young, one of my teachers would say, “When you point the finger, there are three pointing back at you.” If both parties in any conflict would take a genuine look at themselves with the same intensity and passion in which they look at another, we’d see some real progress take place.
If you want to watch a true miracle of healing unfold, begin spending time in the mirror for self-examination and change implementation. You’ll be amazed!
Eric L. Lipsey