Saturday, December 28, 2013

Being Right, Being Wrong

"The Place Where We Are Right"

From the place where we are right
Flowers will never grow
In the spring.

The place where we are right
Is hard and trampled
Like a yard.

But doubts and loves
Dig up the world
Like a mole, a plow.
And a whisper will be heard in the place
Where the ruined
House once stood.

Yehuda Amichai


Duty Calls


Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing,
there is a field. I’ll meet you there.

When the soul lies down in that grass,
the world is too full to talk about.
Ideas, language, even the phrase each other
doesn’t make any sense.

Jelaluddin Rumi, trans Coleman Barks

I'm thinking I'll write something myself on this topic, but for now I just present a few different ideas (you should really watch the video--it's good). Feel free to leave a comment and let me know what you think about being right and being wrong.


  1. I had a feeling that Rumi one was Rumi, just from the first line.

    I used to think that being right was essential and primary. I still think that it matters -- especially in ultimate things like why are we here, is there a God, what happens when we die, what are our responsibilities to others, etc. But I also think, now, that there is so much more abundance of time and space in which each person can make the journey into more and more truth -- the need to hurry them along, the need to point the way, is not so urgent as I once thought it was. If the God I believe in is real, he will continue to reach out and speak to souls as he always has done. I may have things to say or do that may be helpful -- but it is not a burden laid on me alone to say or do the right thing at the right moment so that, if I fail, a soul will be forever doomed to hell. It is enough for all of us to be as awake and as open to the Spirit as we can be in each moment. I think.

    I have changed my mind about things because of arguments and evidences. But what is stronger, more effective, stays with me longer -- is love, compassion, respect.

  2. I don't mind when people prove me wrong, because I can correct my thinking. I don't like "wrong stuff" cluttering up my mind. I know it gets in there, and I prefer to purge it as quickly as possible. My problem is that I often assume others feel this way. About that, I generally discover that I am wrong.

  3. I am often wrong and it's how I learn things. I don't have too much of a need to prove I'm right and I can laugh at my screwups and enjoy other people that do the same. In big things it seems right and wrong can only be seen in retrospect anyway.