Divorce brings the topic of what’s fair and what’s not into acute focus. This is because you loved and lost. There are children to raise and money to be split. And each of you will be starting a new life, while juggling the remnants of the old one. If you were brought up with a strong sense of fair and unfair, there’s a good chance it all feels frightfully wrong
Fair – A Four Letter Word:
Is there ultimate fairness, on a micro basis, involving two divorcing people who have hurt each other? No; in many divorces fair is hard to come by. But forgiveness, healing, learning and moving on stronger because of what you have gone through is possible.
Is there fairness in developing an illness or experiencing a trauma? I say no.
Yet, there are many who disagree. We have a powerful culture today that implies karma-like payback.
This kind of thinking is troublesome, because it comes down to blaming the victim; which is a version of kindergarten style religion. You are good, you get good. You are bad, you get bad. Solomon put that argument to rest three thousand years ago. But, we can believe in the power of healing. In our meditations, in our physicians, in your good will to make use of illness to inform you about what’s really important. And these points count. Ask Solomon.
Fair & Unfair – Set Yourself Free:
If you are comforted by a religion that provides reward in heaven, please feel free to believe. If you believe that bad things happen because people somehow deserve it, then I hope you find a resolution that moves you forward with optimism and confidence.
But, if you are like me, these answers fall flat in face of pain. We don’t get to know the way the world works. It’s too confusing for most of us. But, there is a religion to believe in; one of human insight and dignity that is committed to making a better future from the broken pieces of the past. It’s a religion that has us acting as partners to God (whatever your concept may be), and not just as children looking for protection.
It’s a religion that acknowledges that bad things often happen to good people.
Holding onto bitterness will hurt you. And, like Solomon and Job, you may have to accept that it won’t do you any good. But, I know one thing. Living with a sense of injustice or unfairness hurts the soul. It carves out a place in you that won’t allow healing. It has to go.
It is so much easier to move on when you come to terms with the apparent lack of fairness in life. Strive to make the world a better place. Make your case to a judge or to your clergy or fight your illness with everything you’ve got.
Make the world as fair as you can. It is a human project of the highest order.
But let go of the notion that life MUST be fair. It’s asking too much of a four letter word.
Set yourself free.