Alana: What does it mean to “respect others?” Does it mean that you give your power away? Does it mean that you suppress who you are just because another has an opinion other than your own, or has a view of life that is different than yours? How do you respect others? Does it mean that you look at them and say that they are right and you are wrong? No, this is not what respect is.
Respecting others is allowing them to have their own positions. As you support someone’s own position, you also support yourself. You may ask, “How can this be?” You see, two people can come together and be quite different. One person may like red and another person may like blue. Does it make the person who likes blue bad or wrong compared to the person who likes red? No, it makes them each an individual expressing their own color preference. The fact that one likes blue and other likes red...just is.
Now, I hear your next question, “How can blue and red go together? Can they be compatible?” Certainly! So respect for another is easy when you know yourself. You can know yourself so intently that you can respect another’s position in life. You can respect their feelings and their needs. As you nurture yourself, it will be automatic that you will want to nurture another. As you have compassion for yourself, it will be automatic to have compassion for another. You will recognize that you are not separate. You are not separate from them. You are connected.
Let’s say you greet someone on a particular day when you are having a problem. We shall use an example to illustrate this scenario. You are longing to go to the store, but you feel frustrated because you have no way to get there. You begin walking toward the store past your neighbor’s houses. You see a person you know, so you walk up to them and say, “I need a ride to the store. I love myself, so drive me there now.” (Laughter)