The Consequences Of A False/Enforced Apology

Learning to say ‘sorry’ genuinely takes courage, guts, ounces of humility, and also a high degree of morality and ethics. It’s one of the Soul Lessons that each Soul will learn at different levels during each incarnation, and one that is responsible for lingering inflated egos. We often see people make public apologies to save face or a reputation, but how genuine are they? Are they forced, or made because it confers advantages (for example to have a lawsuit dropped)? Spiritually, it tows a fine line between what is legal and what is moral. What is legal isn’t always moral, and what is moral isn’t necessarily enforced legally.

Recently a couple of issues have been in the headlines that reminded of how conflicted humanity is in regards to morality. Sean Spicer (the current spokesman for the White House) made an error of judgment in comparing Assad to Hitler, claiming Hitler did not murder innocents using chemical weapons that insulted a whole sector of society, implying Hitler wasn’t evil. Within 24 hours, Spice made a public apology, while the Jewish community called for his resignation. He said sorry, but in his position as the official spokesperson for POTUS he should not have said what he did—it wasn’t illegal, but was incorrect and morally offensive. While he did apologize, one must question the inappropriate use of the language, and consider that the apology was enforced to prevent further embarrassment to the administration, which seems to apologize to the world on a weekly basis at present.

The issue with United Airlines is a little more complex and is a prime example of what is considered legal, isn’t always morally acceptable. The issue revolves around flight UA3411 from Chicago to Louisville on 9 April 2017, which had allegedly been oversold, whereupon four crew members appeared at the gate after all passengers had boarded, and requested seats. The poor management decision was made to remove four passengers who had already boarded the plane in order for the staff to fly for work the next day. No volunteers came forward and four passengers were selected randomly (according to reports). However, one refused and ended up being pulled out of his seat and then dragged with blood on his face off the plane.

The small print on an airline ticket doesn’t automatically guarantee you a seat on a plane, and some may say that the company had a right to remove the passenger, but not by physical force which caused an injury. The problems escalated as video clips were posted online, so people could see the actual incident and exchange, which was exaggerated by airline staff, yet the CEO of United Airlines made a thinly disguised apology, placing the blame on the actions of the passenger. This coupled with the internal letter to all staff saying he stood behind the actions of the staff, and felt that procedures had been followed, led to people cutting up their frequent flyer and credit cards.

What the company failed to do is to genuinely apologize to the passenger and admit their wrong doings, the public could see that. While one can argue whether the airline had a right to refuse the passenger the flight, no one can dispute it is illegal and morally wrong to use excessive force that causes actual bodily harm to someone who is not a threat (a 69 year old senior versus three airport security guards). Police are generally careful with protestors who take part in sit ins, and can remove them as long as they do not physically harm them in the process. In this case, the passenger aboard UA3411 ended up with a broken nose, a cut lip, and the loss of two teeth. An apology was necessary, and came only after the company shares fell, and the public declared they would not use the airline again, three days later.

If the CEO (and his team) had made a genuine apology immediately, the damage limitation would have less severe, because when you acknowledge a mistake, you either apologize, or you don’t accept blame. This is an important Soul Lesson for all—that you must be humble and make an apology when you have made a mistake. Too many try to blame others or make excuses, so why is making an apology so hard? First, you need to learn humility and it’s a challenge with the ego to be able to hold your hand up, or come forward and say that you were wrong or made a mistake. When people ask who is responsible for something, very few come forward unprompted to take responsibility. Usually there is some threat, or an investigation to persuade those responsible to come forward. Humans in general don’t like to accept blame or admit to a mistake, because that is associated with failure, and no one wishes to look like a loser. Yet, failure is how one learns and grows. It’s realizing that you have made a mistake that is the lesson, rather than covering it up, or finding some loophole to apportion blame elsewhere.

I find Older and Ancient Souls are more likely to readily admit to errors than Young Souls, who struggle to accept that they could have been wrong. No one likes to admit to mistakes as that makes them look weak and as a failure, but that is a physical realm concept. Those who are able to apologize and recognize errors without resentment or grudges are those who have learned their Soul Lesson, and thus evolve. Of course there maybe times where there is someone else to blame, which is why parents apologize on behalf of their child if they misbehave, as it is their role to guide. Bosses apologize on behalf of their company, therefore, those in positions of responsibility must learn to apologize for others, not to let them off the hook, but to then guide them and teach them the errors they made if they don’t understand why.

The crux is as your Soul becomes older, it tends to say less, therefore fewer apologies need to be made. An Old Soul can appear boring as they opt not to share an opinion or without realizing, they choose to remain silent, but this is because they know it’s not their place to comment or think  very carefully before they speak. It is the Young Soul or Mature Soul in the early stages that struggle with swallowing their pride to apologize, because they can’t differentiate between the societal physical laws and the moral laws that are universal in time and place. A wise Soul will know when man-made laws (that can adapt and change over time) are not applicable, and when an eternal moral law supersedes that.

In the case of United Airlines it was apparent to the majority that you cannot injure and force a passenger off the plane and say it was within the guidelines. As such those guidelines have been altered, and it’s been an expensive lesson. I believe that the company felt obliged to make an actual apology (after several days, and the second public statement) due to pressure from the media and public, and is a prime example of how not to apologize. If one has to think about it, then it isn’t a genuine apology, and that will still generate adverse karma. Perhaps they did see the error of their ways, but as a large company with plenty of experience and access to high level legal advice, they acted poorly and have looked like amateurs.

Naturally, at times it can take time to realize one has made an error, as stubbornness and arrogance are traits many struggle with. What a Soul will learn is that owning up to a mistake and apologizing is not a sign of weakness, but is one of maturity and integrity. To be able to say that you have learned from something negative means your Soul has evolved, but those who refuse to apologize or accept moral wrongdoing will be stuck on their path until they do. It’s not just pride, but learning the ability to know right from wrong, despite the possible negative outcome. Saying sorry is hard, but to do it with genuine intent and to understand why is part of the Soul Growth. Learn from the errors of others, and don’t wait until you have to say sorry; make the conscious choice to do so as soon as you realize the mistake, for that is when the Soul acknowledges a lesson learnt, and is part of the evolving Soul Expedition.

 

Why Closure Is a Lesson For All Souls

Death is a means of closure, or so we may think, but is it really? Whether it’s finding closure on a betrayal, a relationship separation, an argument between friends, or a family feud—Souls of all ages will encounter lessons of closure at some point in their incarnation. It’s never easy, and how do you know if and when you have closure? Is closure forgiveness or does it require more? What if it’s guilt? Is it more than forgiving yourself, and what if you can’t?

I was recently reminded of this when an old best friend’s mother died, and as lovely as she was, she never seemed to have had closure on her divorce, or the issues with her daughter. On occasions she would act irrationally, but in hindsight it was a means to protect herself, and to assert her position to prevent her feeling the pain of the divorce. At times when we have been wronged, it is hard to find that strength to forgive and get closure. While divorce is a means toward closure, it’s only a legal matter and the emotional issues can linger for decades. Former spouses still end up in games of tit for tat, or find ways to punish one another when an opportunity arises subconsciously. That hinders actual closure.

These days with social media and the internet, people tend to think if they delete a profile or unfriend someone on Facebook then that gives them closure. Often it doesn’t as the resentment remains, or people delete things as a quick fix because they don’t like something or wish to face it. A friend of mine has a habit of deleting everything they don’t like in attempt to have closure, however, you can’t have true closure through escape. Pretending something never happened or that has been erased doesn’t mean it didn’t exist. Rather than closure, it’s more of a denial.

Some people who are terminally ill may feel a need to get closure on things before they leave, while others (usually younger souls) may not feel they have to. But what about those who are still alive and who weren’t able to get closure from someone who has transitioned? That is where reincarnation comes in, and whatever transpired will reoccur in the next incarnation so the issue can be resolved and closure can be achieved.

Family feuds are one the issues that binds people together when death occurs. There is an unspoken obligation to inform other family members (even if they have never spoken to one another) when someone has died. However, while people do consider blood to be thicker and a bond, more families live far away, lose contact, and barely know one another except for a shared surname and ancestors. How does one get closure on family matters when there is no communication? Perhaps that’s a reason why more Souls tend to reincarnate together because closure wasn’t achieved on all sides?

For many that have loved and lost, learning to accept closure on a failed relationship is both painful, and also leads to a feeling of failure. The burning of letters, deleting their texts, and throwing out their possessions maybe acts of closure, but often they are done in anger to try and remove the presence of that person. Some move on quickly to another relationship on the rebound to compensate for those feelings, but unless they have had closure it may lead to the same situation again. There is no magic time frame or formula for closure to be achieved, because it’s only possible when each Soul is ready to accept what has happened without resentment or anger. In real life that can stretch to years, and emotions aren’t things you can always control or be rational about.

Even when friendships drift apart or end due to disagreements, it’s hard to accept that someone you have known no longer will be in or wishes to be a part of your life. In a sense it’s rejection and loss, and closure can be hard because deep down we hope rifts can be mended. While that hope remains, the Soul doesn’t want or seek closure, even though it maybe inevitable. I like to think of friends as those who care about you unconditionally, and there will be fallouts and arguments, but that is natural. Choosing to end a friendship (a true one) is as major as a relationship, because one chooses friends unlike family members, and that loss can be greater when there is no justifiable reason.

Closure on issues can take years, and often it’s subconscious as any anger, resentment or pain slowly erodes, or distractions have occurred to prevent any dwelling on the issues. Saying you have had closure and actually feeling you have had closure are very different things. It’s more than letting things go, but having a deeper understanding of why something had to happen, its purpose, and what you have learnt from it (whether good or bad). When you can talk about the incidents that need closure without anger and remorse, then you have true closure.

It takes time (maybe the entire incarnation) because that’s one of the greatest lessons each Soul learns during an incarnation; how to get closure and to know when they have actually achieved it, because they have learnt a Soul Lesson. Some however don’t get closure, and they end an incarnation with outstanding issues. They then have a choice to reincarnate immediately to get closure, or to seek guidance if they don’t feel ready for closure and need time to heal. Even in death, there is no guarantee of closure because Souls are eternal. It’s with this knowledge (or theory for those who struggle with this belief) that encourages me to find closure wherever possible, and it comes with learning to be more understanding and tolerant of others. Another option is prevent the need for closure in the first place, but that’s not always possible, and something that Old and Ancient Souls prefer to do if they can.

Why Do Souls Suffer in Silence?

Throughout my life, I’ve never met anyone that has not said they have suffered from something, which makes me question why does suffering exist? It may seem more philosophical than spiritual, but is subjective according to individual experiences and expectations. However, many ask why do we suffer? Often it is out of fear, but also people feel they are suffering and are thus victims when maybe they were expecting too much, or were unaware that their situation wasn’t that bad?

The question is if a Soul is suffering, then why can’t they do anything about it? Perhaps they should gain courage to speak up, or give up something in order to change their path? You can’t have everything, and sometimes one must sacrifice something. For example, if a a partner in a relationship is suffering due to verbal abuse, then the immediate question is why don’t they leave? Other factors come into play such as children, finances, and security, but if none of those are applicable, then what is stopping a Soul from ending what they perceive as suffering? When people say they are suffering in their job, because they hate it, then they do have a choice to leave. Some won’t because of finances, and others can’t because they can’t get another job. Often the Soul has choices—not always great ones, but they are options nonetheless if they choose to see them.

I have been in both situations, and at times suffered in silence because I thought it wasn’t that bad or that things would get better. They often don’t, although you may try to convince yourself they will. In previous relationships I have kept quiet, and suffered only a couple of times, but decided I should see whether it would get better. The problem is in relationships the other party can make you feel guilty, and remaining objective can be hard when it’s the closest person to you. Very often partners get brainwashed, and once free, they chide themselves for not leaving sooner. That’s why I always recommend people to keep friendships, as they can be the voice of reason.

In terms of jobs, many of the workforce silently suffer and yearn to do something else for a living. Do factory workers and cleaners really enjoy their jobs, or are they convenient, or a means to an end? For those who love and enjoy their work, they are blessed, but many are content or tolerate their working environment. Some however do suffer, and they do it for money alone. When that happens, it takes courage to give up a well-paid job to have mental freedom, and I can say it’s worth it.

Souls suffer in silence and maintain the status quo, but that means they will be stuck in a rut and often trapped in their own cage. No one should be afraid to voice their genuine concerns (notice, I don’t think constant whining on small matters is considered suffering, although in the minds of some it is), but they do out of fear of the repercussions, or what others will think of them. In some ways that creates and prolongs any suffering that has arisen.

I suffered at the hands of bullies as a young child, and there was no one to come to my rescue—not even my brother who was at the same school and who watched me being bullied. If I told the teachers, then they would increase the bullying, so what could I do? They would steal my snacks at break time each day and grab them out of my hands, then taunt me, and push me over while calling me names each day. Then one day, in the playground I had my chocolate bar in my hand and saw the gang approaching. I really wanted my chocolate bar, and thought what more can they do to me? So I gobbled it down in front of them, and told them they were too late. I honestly thought they would try to beat me up (I was about 8 or 9), but they stood there in shock that I stood up to them, and walked away. The bullying didn’t stop completely after that, but they backed off and never tried to get my chocolate bars again.

When we suffer we learn harsh and painful lessons, but it should also help us to learn empathy, so if we see others in a similar plight we are able to help them. Those who do suffer seek help, and those who have been through similar situations will recognize a silent cry for help. I find being a good listener without judging is helpful, because a Soul that is suffering must choose their own path; they should try and accept what has happened, look at what has been learned, and then to use that knowledge to help others and not to repeat the same scenarios. Instead some spend time and energy trying to understand why it happened (you will never find a definitive answer, only possible theories), wonder whether they were they to blame, and ask why did they deserve it, or think that it’s not fair that they had to suffer compared to others.

Perhaps a past life karmic debt has been played out, or the Soul had volunteered for an altruistic incarnation? These are theories, and while some people may mock them, there is no evidence or reason why some suffer more than others. Rather than to spend time and anger feeling that life has dealt you a poor hand, isn’t it better to try and change things to be the best they can in the circumstances? I’ve heard people say they are suffering, where really they just aren’t getting things their own way. Suffering is when you are harmed in circumstances that are beyond your control, so think about whether you are really suffering, or are you containing that suffering with excuses?

If you hate your job, boss, co-workers, then leave once you hand in your notice. Money isn’t everything, and you have a choice, but are you brave enough to take it? In fractured relationships, you have to look at what is more important—the house, what people think, money, or your sanity? There is no amount of money that can buy you peace of mind, but you must choose between material security, and suffering. Again, there is a choice; a Soul has choices, even if they can’t see them or consider them viable choices.

True suffering comes from sacrifices, but it need not be in silence. Spiritually, suffering is a means to help Souls to learn and evolve. Now this may not help those who are suffering or be of much comfort, but that’s why it exists. Souls should try not to blame others, but accept the lessons learned, otherwise they will repeat the lessons again, and no one wants to go through that if they can help it. Maybe the lesson is to learn forgiveness, tolerance, or to learn how and when to trust others—there are a multitude of lessons that involve suffering, including losing someone you love. We can help others suffer less by considering others in our actions, and to have empathy for others. That is another lesson all Souls learn. Often suffering is eased with a kind word or act, or when someone will listen without judgment, for we all make mistakes—humans were not created to be perfect.