The wise man ducks his head when someone swings at him. If he swings back just because he was swung at, he will be seen as the aggressor and fail to win people’s hearts. Although it may seem unjust, refraining from reacting out of anger shows true character. People turn sullen over a trivial emotional matter, and then attack the person later with an unrelated but logical-sounding pretext.
When you lower yourself, the world elevates you. When you elevate yourself, the world lowers you. When you arrive at the peak of enlightenment, you will understand: Your peak is the same height as your neighbour’s. At the peak, you see everyone’s holiness.
When you keep clashing with someone, it may be the world’s way of asking you to look closely at yourself. When you don’t like someone, try to figure out what it is you don’t like; see whether you have a similar flaw within yourself. The flaw that you immediately notice in someone you meet is probably a flaw of yours, too. If you didn’t have it, you wouldn’t have noticed it so quickly.
Excerpt From: Haemin Sunim. “The Things You Can See Only When You Slow Down: How to Be Calm and Mindful in a Fast-Paced World”. Apple Books.