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Be the bigger person

General, On my mind now

23 November 2014 | 0 Comments

A recent communication between two people had me copied in it where the content of the correspondence was not particularly sweet, for the lack of better words.

It would have been so easy for the recipient to retort in equal stance and tone, which they did. Quite understandably so.

A series of replies back and forth then came to a better ending when the recipient decided to respond in an empowering manner – something we have learned – that we can choose our responses.

So I recall a time where I attended an Amway rally in Jakarta, in 1995 – yes one of those rah-rah rallies. In there, there was a young lady who spoke, whose words have stuck in me as a guiding principle in my life.

She said in Indonesian: ‘Jadilah kamu seperti pokok mempelam, biarpun dibaling dengan batu, tetap akan membalas dengan buah mempelam yang manis dan enak sekali’

Translated, this means: Be like a mango tree, even when people hurl stones at you, you will only respond with sweet mangoes.

Now I like this. Often people have commented that I do not stand for my rights, that I should fight ‘fire with fire’ and fight ‘poison with poison’. But if I did just that, then what differentiated me from the fire and poison?

So I am comforted that this person, who of course initially responded naturally with fire, then softened and started giving out sweet mangoes. Thank you, for being the bigger person.

So what would be your guiding principle? How would you be the bigger person?


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