The Risk of Trusting and The Strength of Forgiving.


What’s worse than being betrayed is being betrayed without explanation, and by people who one trusted. To trust fully in people, then to be betrayed by these people feels like The Black Death.What’s most important for this individual is to forgive.

A common saying goes, “For the strength of the pack is the wolf, and the strength of the wolf is the pack.” Similarly, I feel the strength of a social group is the individual, and the strength of the individual is the social group. Trust being alone, and trust being with others.

I try not to limit my ability to one group’s or person’s perspective. To progress and realize my own abilities, it’s important I venture out of my realm of comfort, into no man’s land  to discover new people, places, and challenges, in addition to the group or groups I currently communicate with and activities I participate in. Then I can compare their ideas and customs to my own, learn about new cultures, and ideas. Leaving the realm of comfort to discover new places and people after being betrayed can feel like a waste of time, because of the chances of being hurt again. Yes, it is a risk in trusting others and myself, one I feel worth the effort when I find the people who are sincere and appreciate my company and knowledge as much as I do theirs.

Consider Jackson:

Jackson has been a part of a social media group for a few years, and has established trust among several members. One day, a lot of these people he considered friends and who considered him a friend, stopped responding to his comments and questions. He’s been abandoned and ostracized. Poor Jackson, right? However, this is a hard thing for anyone to deal with, especially a kid.  Communication faded away. And there was no explanation provided. He was treated like the new kid in school who wore the unpopular brand of shoes and clothes. He’s disappointed, angry, distraught, and confused. Loneliness consumed him. Nonetheless, he would be even more disappointed if he allowed their behavior and his worrying to hurt and bother him. Making it through these tough situations make people thick-skinned. Jackson was a fool for being so trustful yet also grateful and brave for doing so. Braving the world further outside his realm to find trust in others he knew would only thicken his skin.

Without an explanation and after years of struggling through developing relationships with these people, texting, sharing selfies on Snapchat…exchanging trust, then to be treated like the kid who was attacked by a skunk on the way to school was a low blow to Jackson. As the old saying goes, all good things must come to an end, so better things can begin. Instead of allowing negativity and hate to make him a miserable bastard, Jackson focused his attention in other directions and helped others feel less miserable. If there are other paths besides one of misery, where the negativity lay in wait it makes sense to choose these paths. If there is only the path of negativity to travel, then one like Jackson must demonstrate endurance, be the one who sets an example by going through the smoke of negativity like it’s water. So Jackson goes through this negativity, betrayal… like enduring a marathon (it gets easier the more he runs) and comes out rewarded with the fact knowing he made it through the smoke, alive.

At the end of the day, people need to trust themselves. If they don’t, then how can they trust anyone else? Forgiving is not letting in but releasing oneself and others from a smoke of misery. Jackson refuses to allow the smoke of misery to take him away and

I thought the read below by Martha Nussbaum was a great one:

Philosopher Martha Nussbaum on Anger, Forgiveness, the Emotional Machinery of Trust, and the Only Fruitful Response to Betrayal in Intimate Relationships




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