Recently Michael Wheeler wrote an article entitled “Marines Don’t Do That: Mastering the Split-Second Decision. In it he quoted Major David Dixon, who recently retired from the US Marine Corps. According to Major Dixon, Marines are taught the concept of “Marines don’t do that” during their training.
It got me to thinking about how I react in life and what I “don’t do.” I’m usually the one who speaks up and makes at least a few people uncomfortable if someone is telling an inappropriate joke or being discriminatory. I simply have no tolerance for it. I used to. I used to be afraid to speak up for fear someone might start attacking me, or making fun of me for not “being one of the boys.”
I suppose becoming comfortable with my sexual orientation as well as my belief in the teachings of the Science of Mind – both of which are still not universally accepted – has positioned me to speak out. It comes from a foundation of confidence and security, not from one of reaction, indignation or anger. Admittedly, I still feel some of those things when I witness gross injustices, but I’m not out to prove anything to anyone.
What guides your life course and your interactions with others on a daily basis? Do you allow discrimination or injustices to go on in front of you? How we deal with what we consider inappropriate behavior here in America is vastly different than in other countries, including our neighbors directly north of us. But regardless of local customs, how will you act (not react) in an unfair situation the next time it happens?
It might not be a situation of sticking up for someone else. It might be having the opportunity to disregard our own personal ethics, for example tossing our cigarette out the window, accepting more change than is due us, or ignoring someone who is differently-abled than we.
If you are truly the religious scientist you say you are, or the Christian, or the Muslim or the Buddhist, or whatever other teachings guide your life, will you stand up for righteous and fair treatment of others? Or, will you remain silent while those less able to speak up are put down, embarrassed, ill-treated or even injured? Will you practice what you preach to preserve our planet, or will you make excuses because you are too busy to go the extra mile?
Those aren’t easy questions to hear or perhaps easy ones to contemplate. I would, however, suggest to you that they are ones we should all entertain. When faced with the hard questions of life no person of integrity turns a blind eye to the situation. We just don’t do that.
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,