Loving Bullies

I love bullies, and that is why bullies have no power over me.

Bullies are people who have learned how to bully by being bullied; they are hurting too.  What they seem to want is for others to hurt as much as they are hurting, or to show them how to stop hurting.

A bully hurts others by words or violence, both to entice an emotional response out of the bullied that causes them to be afraid or in some way emotionally manipulated.

To overcome the power of the bully one practices positive emotions IN SPITE of what the bully is trying to create in you.

This is why I love bullies, for they force me to practice love.

Since I do not want to feel fear or be intimidated, I practice love when my normal conditioning or habit would be to react with fear or some other negative emotion.  This love drives out that feeling of fear or whatever negative emotion I might habitually react with. This practice is not easy at the beginning, but it gets easier.

When I remember that bullies are people who learned how to bully by being bullied I can feel compassion for the bully.  Compassion is an aspect of love, all of which feels good or at least better than the intimidation and fear that the bully seems to want us to feel.

It is the compassion that motivates me to demonstrate to the bully that it is possible to overcome the world and its ability to cause them emotional pain.

I am reminded of a line that Jesus is reported to have said, “What profit you to love those who love you, even the sinners can do that.  So much greater is the profit to love those who persecute you.”

In my experience, my skill or ability to love grows faster when I am challenged to love those who torment, judge or bully me in some way.  It really is easy to love your friends and loved one, anyone can do that.  But you gain so much more in your skill of loving by loving those who torment you.

AND, you are demonstrating to them the way out of their suffering, which in itself is an act of love.  When you no longer feel the pain of the words or mean behaviors because you are no longer reacting to them in a way that causes you pain, then you are demonstrating to them how they too can overcome the world.

The way to end bullying in the world is to first top bullying ourselves by our reactions to what life is offering.  The practice of happiness, joy, love and gratitude in spite of what life is offering is how we stop bullying ourselves.  In my experience, all spiritual traditions around the world and most psychological systems encourage people to practice these positive emotions.

Don’t worry, be happy.

There is no way to happiness; happiness is the way.

The great commandment is to love…

Love one another…

All of these are encourage us to practice positive emotions.

Usually we think that emotions are something that happens to us, not something we have a choice in whether or not we experience.  But when a person endeavors to pursue and effort to developing their ability to feel any emotion at will, they will find that there is no greater gift they can give themselves or other than to make that effort.  Again, this is something that Jesus seemed to be talking about in his teachings but I also see it in the teaching of most great teachers.

We can overcome all bullying if we care enough about ourselves and others to make the effort.  Practicing joy and love in the presence of bullying is how we can get free from bullying and show the bully how they too can get free from those who bully them.

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Jim

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