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A Fool For God

A short little man assaults a strongly built man who is also a black-belt holder in martial arts. The strongly built man bites his lip but refuses to hit back. Instead he says "thank you" and begins to walk away. Onlookers murmur at the strong man’s action and chatter about his being a coward. The strong man pauses for a moment, calmly observes the jeering onlookers, and continues to walk away. Feeling full of himself and encouraged by the cheering onlookers, the little man follows the strong man and yells abuses after the strong man. In his head, the strong man thinks of a combination of two good punches and a quick follow-up kick that would put out the little man once and for all, but he hesitates and with a smile on his face, he continues to walk away. The little man feeling satisfied in his belief (though mistaken) that he has scared off the strong man, proudly returns to the cheers and applause of the onlookers made up of different people.

The Unknown Facts

The little man did not know that the man he assaulted and abused was a black-belt holder who came close to killing him. He did realize the strong build of the man he assaulted but because he was acting on the encouragement of the onlookers and because his ego carried him away, he failed to realize the danger in provoking an unknown person. Emotionally motivated and acting on his ego, he forgot that he was very ill and could not have taken a blow from even a kid. Some of the onlookers have just stepped out of a psychological class and wanted to see if the lecturer was right about some points he made about man, aggression, and forgiveness, but they did not know how close they came to being accomplices (or at least witnesses) to a criminal charge of homicide.

The strong man did not know that the little man was sick and that the little man would have died from the blow had the strong man delivered even a single punch with his strong fist. The strong man simply took in the insult and hearkened to the martial arts admonition to be humble and only use his martial art experience if needed for self-defence. He overcame the temptation to display his superior physical strength by pouncing on his little opponent. Rather, forgave the situation and walked away convinced that it was not worth his reaction. In the eyes of some of the onlookers, he walked away a coward and a fool but he spared himself the troubles of facing a criminal charge for homicide if he had punched the little man. Yet, to the knowledge of some of the onlookers he exhibited tolerance, forgiveness, and patience, although to the general public and even to the little man, the strong man may have appeared to be a coward and a fool.

THE REALITY

The above type of scenario plays out regularly in our daily lives whether at work, at home, on the road, at a vocation, or at an event. Such is the mechanics of character and the interpretation of behaviour, action, and reaction by men amongst fellow men. Some teachers and masters emphasize and exhibit the virtues of humility, forgiveness, tolerance, and patience, while some tend towards vengeance and the principle of getting even – "an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth." The reality is that man reserves the right to make decisions for himself for he will always be responsible for his actions or in-actions. Man may choose to forgive and seek revenge when provoked or "offended." He may choose to humble himself or act in vanity and egotism in the face of others. He may choose to exercise restraint, tolerance and forgiveness and thereby remain a loving being before God even when others think he is a fool. After all, man is always quick to judge and make conclusions even when he knows very little about the premise of his conclusions, and therefore far from being correct.

A FOOL FOR GOD

Vengeance (the lack of forgiveness) has never been known to resolve conflicts. Rather, it has always been known to encourage bitterness, sustain rancor, and escalate conflicts. This applies across the board in life and all our dealings and relationship with each other – whether in our relationships, businesses, jobs, or other forms of social, economical, political, or spiritual interaction. Some know that it matters not what name their fellow men call them or what adjectives are ascribed to their behaviour, principles, and lifestyles. They know when to stand up for their rights and the protection of their spaces, but they refuse to be discouraged from being truthful, honest, friendly, loving, caring, peaceful, and understanding while dealing with life. They know that what really matters is the substance and fulfilment of their words, actions, or in-actions beyond the common, ordinary and external impressions of orthodox lifestyles and dogmas.

Thus in the eyes of his fellow man, the man who does not act or react in accordance with common desires and expectations of the public or to the satisfaction of the ego and/or the lower self may appear to be a fool when he is indeed existing at a higher level of consciousness and enjoying the blessings of God with all the understanding, peace, and love that comes with it. This is only my understanding and I am still learning.

Copyright ©2004 Oliver Mbamara

One Response to “A Fool For God”

  • Romeo says:

    That is so true And it shows that ignorance is in fact foolishness the short man chose to ignore all the other possibilities why the strong man left it could have been that he saw that he was sick and chose not to fight hin yet the short man didn’t want to see that but was so hungry for human praise that he only took what onlookers had to say the cheering.My prayer is that man would know that what makes us strong is actually doing what is not very bright before man’s eyes But insane to their eyes yet very pleasing before God’s eyes

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