Is getting even, or the feeling of being gratified by getting even ever justified? I think not.
To maintain peace of mind, substitute feelings of compassion for retribution. Revenge or getting even is a fighting spirit in action. It is a negative emotion, in that it sends the same hormones coursing through our body as when we feel anger.
Getting even is a negative response to anger.
Meditation for Reflection
Sit comfortably and practice regulated breathing with timing such as 2 seconds to breathe in and 2 seconds to breathe out - continuing throughout the meditation.
Read the following, then close your eyes and fold your hands in your lap for a period of reflection.
Revenge serves no useful purpose. Two wrongs do not make the situation right. Rather than angry actions, let us improve our world by holding compassion in our hearts for both sides of the issues that have passed and are ongoing.
In this, the 'new' way of substituting compassion for gloating over another's misfortune, we will set a happier, more enlightened view for the future.
On a personal level, if something negative happens in our lives, what helps our situation is:
1. Maintaining our own peace of mind by staying away from the people or places where the bad scene occurred;
2. Substituting positive attitudes for negative thoughts - which includes eliminating gloating over another's negative happenings;
3. Leading a positive lifestyle in order to keep our body and mind healthy.
Getting even is not an option on the spiritual path - it reinforces negative attitudes, thoughts and actions. Taking a stand for positive action in our own lives is an antidote for seeking revenge or gloating in revenge.
We may not have been able to stop something bad from happening to us, but we do not have to continue the negative energy by seeking revenge. We can cut ourselves out of the circle of negativity by disassociating from the source, occasions, and people who act so negatively that we may want to seek revenge on them.
To finish your meditation, take a deep breath, stretch, and go forth with the prayer that others will turn toward the light of goodness, and that we maintain our own goodness.
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Article by Susan Helene Kramer
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Disclaimer: This article is written from a spiritual point of view. For mental health issues consult a licensed therapist.