Spirituality Magazine

Where’s Does Hatred Come From? – Dialectic Two-Step

By Andrew Furst @a_furst

Question:

Is hatred purely emotional/psychological, or is it also ‘spiritual’?

Response:

If hatred came from Lithuania, would it make a difference?

How is spiritual different from the emotional or the psychological? You put the word spiritual in quotes. I think this accentuates the ambiguity of the term and muddles the question.

Hatred is something that comes and goes, in and out of our consciousness. It can arise from many different causes and conditions.

It would be ludicrous to try and inventory all the possible sources of hatred as if we would be able to prevent those conditions from arising.

I would suggest a more practical line of questioning. Ask this:

  • When anger arises how do I respond?
  • Does my response compound the suffering?
  • Does my response incorporate a strategy for decreasing my suffering?

This line of questioning leads to practical opportunities to decrease our suffering. It also acknowledges that we generally can’t control our external circumstances. It focuses on the areas where we may have some amount of control – our internal responses.

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Dialectic Two-Step  is an ongoing series of my thoughts on questions that come my way.

Wisdom lies neither in fixity nor in change, but in the dialectic between the two. - Octavio

Where’s Does Hatred Come From? – Dialectic Two-Step
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