It’s Just Two Squirrels

April 1, 2011

Personal Growth

The other day I was looking out a window and suddenly experienced double vision. Medically speaking, this is generally not a good sign, so I looked more closely. I then realized that two nearly identical squirrels were running at the same speed and height up two trees of almost the same width. Rather than dashing off to the emergency room, I chuckled at the deception.

Similar phenomena occur in our lives every day. Someone speaks to you in much the same way as your mother/father did when you were a child, so you respond as though that person were your parent. A partner snaps at you as though you were defective, so you hastily defend yourself. Closer observation, however—sometimes called wisdom—reveals that the other person is not your parent, and your partner is simply responding to his or her own pain, rather than describing your state of worthlessness.

With greater understanding, what appears to be double vision is almost always two squirrels running up two separate trees, and that understanding entirely changes our response.

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