“There is never a conflict with person or condition, but rather a false concept mentally entertained about person, thing, circumstance, or condition. Therefore, make the correction within yourself, rather than attempting to change anyone or anything in the without.”
-Joel S. Goldsmith Infinite Way, Wisdoms
Western thinking embraces the notion that being “right,” is winning. He/She who is right wins. He/She who is wrong loses. We all want to win…sometimes at great cost.
In my psychology career, I would ask couples “Do you want to be right, or do you want to be married!?” Most would say “both!” And furthermore, if their partner would just acknowledge their rightness, there would be no conflict.
Joel Goldsmith’s teachings emphasize the view that our lives are simply out-picturings of our own consciousness and the conflicts we envision are unresolved snags within us. What I believe strongly is that the first stop when discord appears is within one’s own inner contemplative place. To dive into the outer projection and try to fix it is like running up to the screen in the moving theater and trying to change parts of the movie you don’t like!
If conflict appears, go within. Only speak from a place of peace where you have prepared a welcoming place of learning. Conflict is an “activating event.” It requires space to create full presence. If we entertain that everything that appears, even conflict, is an opportunity to self-reflect and allow the lessons of the moment to appear, maybe we would address what appears as conflict with gratitude and ease rather than annoyance and impatience.
By now you may be thinking of situations in which this approach would never work! Places where you were absolutely right… What did you learn from taking the position of being the one who is right? I would venture to say, probably not too much if the issue wasn’t evaluated as a learning opportunity first.