Hide the pain inside? In what organ? Via which… fluid? Everyone knows it hurts terribly to be ostracized. But you cannot be profoundly happy if your happiness depends on others. So let people have their opinions. Besides, when our guard’s down you and I are equally bad for accidentally hurting others. The reason we can’t stop it from happening is because it happens inside the brain of the person who’s hurt and we don’t know what might offend them. Nor do we control their thoughts—they do. They think the judgments or memories that release the chemicals that lead to the sensation of pain, just like we’re doing the thinking when it’s us being hurt. So you can enjoy hanging around with different people other than those who attack you, but don’t try to lead a life where no one attacks you. That’s impossible and a waste of energy because rather than ruminating on their opinions, you could just be focused on something else. Everyone you meet will have an opinion about you. I want you to think about all of the people that you have had opinions about. Some of them you’ll never see again. But none of them would really care what your opinions had been. There’s just too many of them. So they live instead. You should do the same. Stop trying to figure life out. Live instead.
Following a childhood accident should have left him dead, Scott McPherson spent his life meditating on thought, consciousness, reality and the self. Seeing the emotional damage done by ego-based overthinking he began dedicating a part of his life to guiding students toward more peaceful and rewarding lives. He is currently a writer, speaker and mindfulness instructor based in Edmonton, Canada.