How To Learn From Your Greatest Enemy
Your Enemy is Your Teacher
The Dalai Lama once said,
“Your enemy is your greatest teacher”
But what does this mean?
How does one forgive or learn from someone they think of as an enemy? How do you look past the discord that an enemy has caused to see the value in the lesson they are teaching you?
Those are some hard questions to ask and answer with this subject.
Being a divorced 30 something single mother, this was a hard lesson for me to learn; it really took some time to see it as a learning lesson instead of allowing the anger to win.
SEE ALSO: The 6 Lokas Of Buddhism
Change Your Perspective
The question that you should ask yourself is what’s the positive I can take away from this experience?
There are several:
By forcing a situation you wouldn’t have had otherwise, it makes you stand up and learn very quickly how to change your perception and adapt.
After being married for over ten years and now being on my own with a joint custody arrangement, I learned how to become resourceful very quickly, get accustomed to coming home to an empty house, and now having a whole lotta me time again.
What have I learned about myself from this experience?
I was forced to face and deal with anger head on, no hiding or pushing it away.
Let it Go
By looking at anger, acknowledging it, and then letting it go, you are freeing yourself from emotions and ties that hold you back as a human being.
As a Buddhist, this makes me one step closer to enlightenment and detachments of the ego.
Letting go of years of resentment, hurt, and betrayal was a tough lesson to learn, let alone let go of.
But it was so liberating in the end.
What can I take away from this and change my life for the better?
Positive…impermanence, nothing lasts forever, whether we want to change or not, its going to happen.
You no longer “need” this person/situation/feeling in your life, so natural law of life is making that change for you, whether you are ready or not, and getting rid of the old to make room for the new.
Reflect on how you’ve evolved and how you can use this knowledge for the better in your life.
By using the 3 ideas above you can learn to respect and even maybe love your “enemy”, and realize they were put in your path in this life for a reason; to teach a lesson that couldn’t have been taught any other way.
But once the lesson is over, let go, do not hold on to it.
Live it and then let it go, the lesson is over and you need to move on. Allowing the “enemy” to hold you back is allowing that anger to keep its hold on you.
Then you’re learning nothing.
Like the Buddha said:
“Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.”
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