Friday, December 12, 2008

Ghosts of Scrooge

Bah! Humbug! Words to live by if your name is Ebenezer Scrooge. This world would be a much better place without all the people. I know it sounds harsh but think about it. Other than the occasional frustration of a disobedient dog, or the scratch marks on your new furniture from the cat or possibly the mouse that escaped your grandson's makeshift cage, there are few irritants that can really spoil a good day than people.
So what possible reason could Scrooge and I have for an often, considered negative attitude about people? As a teacher and director of a youth non-profit, I seem to meet up with some of the most irritating of the bunch.

Oddly enough, a woman whom I hardly knew gave me the best advice. We met on a plane and began chatting to pass the time. She had recently finished a book by Paramahansa Yogananda. She said he spoke eloquently about the freedom of forgiveness. His words serve as a mantra. Five little words spoken in the heat of anger - Bless them and forgive them. I find them most effective when repeated until the anger passes or I pass out, whichever comes first.

Of course the best advice is one that is passed on to others. So I give this advice freely to Scrooge and all those who will listen. It would be nice to extend this season of goodwill to men beyond the stroke of midnight on December 25th. May the ghosts of Scrooge haunt us all year long. Perhaps the world would be a better place if people were blessed and forgiven. That's what a wise grandma would do.

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