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Old 05-03-2010, 07:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default How You View People Is A Reflection Of Yourself

Sometime ago, I remember reading an article which had a story in it that goes along these lines:

There's a farmer between two towns tending to his crops. A traveler comes by and asks the farmer where the next town is? The farmer says down the road. The traveler says he's looking for a new place to live and asks how the people are in this town. The farmer asks "well how were the people in the last town?" The traveler says "people were cold, cynical and uncaring." The farmer replies "the people are the same in this town." The traveler then says "ok, I'll just find another town."

Later on the day, another traveler passes by and ask the farmer the same thing. He says his town was burnt to the ground and needed a new town to live in. He asks how the people are in that town. The farmer asks "how were the people in that town before it was destroyed?" The traveler says they are "loving, wonderful and warm." The farmer says that's how you'll find the people in this town.

I get the underlying message, but I am trying to understand how the view you develop for others is essentially a reflection of yourself. For example if you think people are hurtful, that you hurt people in some way. It's almost unfathomable to realize how your experiences can reshape your perspective over time.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:04 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Nice post. I think it's true (for myself at least). My relationships have always been significantly healthier in the times when I've felt good about myself. This isn't to say that feeling like **** about oneself is an excuse to treat others poorly, but that is how it's manifested itself in my life. It's something I battle with daily.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
 
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So did the farmer purposely change his answer from the first guy to the next or did the attitude of the second guy have a subconscious effect on the farmer?

Just wondering...
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brightpaperwarewolf View Post
Sometime ago, I remember reading an article which had a story in it that goes along these lines:

There's a farmer between two towns tending to his crops. A traveler comes by and asks the farmer where the next town is? The farmer says down the road. The traveler says he's looking for a new place to live and asks how the people are in this town. The farmer asks "well how were the people in the last town?" The traveler says "people were cold, cynical and uncaring." The farmer replies "the people are the same in this town." The traveler then says "ok, I'll just find another town."

Later on the day, another traveler passes by and ask the farmer the same thing. He says his town was burnt to the ground and needed a new town to live in. He asks how the people are in that town. The farmer asks "how were the people in that town before it was destroyed?" The traveler says they are "loving, wonderful and warm." The farmer says that's how you'll find the people in this town.

I get the underlying message, but I am trying to understand how the view you develop for others is essentially a reflection of yourself. For example if you think people are hurtful, that you hurt people in some way. It's almost unfathomable to realize how your experiences can reshape your perspective over time.
Interesting story, certainly food for thought.

Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenGlansberg View Post
So did the farmer purposely change his answer from the first guy to the next or did the attitude of the second guy have a subconscious effect on the farmer?

Just wondering...
I wonder if the second traveler returns to the farmer weeks later and says,
"You lied!"
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:34 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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I believe that others want to hurt me. I know what the worst way someone could treat me is, so I defend myself from it by inadvertently taking those bad traits. To protect myself I become a hard person to get along with. I wouldn't want to meet myself until I learn, at least artificially, to make people feel comfortable around me.

It's how I unwittingly become what I fear. Trying to protect myself is how it starts, by arming myself.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:39 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Arbor View Post
It's how I unwittingly become what I fear. Trying to protect myself is how it starts, by arming myself.
Bingo. This has wrecked my life up until now.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by StevenGlansberg View Post
So did the farmer purposely change his answer from the first guy to the next or did the attitude of the second guy have a subconscious effect on the farmer?

Just wondering...

*smirk*

For me that story is a really mean stultification of the first stranger, who was obviously offended by the people of the first village (probably the native village of the farmer) and is now being one more time victimized for saying the truth.
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Old 05-03-2010, 08:49 PM   #8 (permalink)
 
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generally,
when i'm feeling bad about myself (mainly guilt or shame), i hate everyone
and when i see myself as a humble, caring, accepting person, i love everyone.

i think it's only true to a certain extent, though.
the whole anxiety aspect is different.
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Old 05-03-2010, 10:20 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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which town had more hot females? i would go to that one....j/k

<--puts on his thinking cap...hmmm...*strokes beard* bullies subconscious mind sees the insecurity in the prey whom also is insecure. the insecure bully feeds his insecurity by bulling.

the prey sees the bully as someone insecure cus the bully has to continue being a bully to make himsef feel important. so the prey hates the bully in return.

they both see their insecurity in each other (reflection).

viewing this reflection = anger?

nahh..i don’t think i’m getting it yet....

but what i have noticed is that the people that i find irritating have a lot of my...whats the word...characteristics.

EDIT: for clarity
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Old 05-04-2010, 04:28 AM   #10 (permalink)
 
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I like that story - I think it's basically saying that you create your own experience. The first man had a view that people were generally bad, and therefore it didn't matter who he encountered in the future - they would always seem bad. The second man had a view that people were generally good, and by projecting that to the world that's what he brought back to himself. The farmer knew this, and knew that while people don't change, a given observer's point of view does. Like the adage: "Wherever you go, there you are". I think it doesn't present a "fix" for anxiety - meaning that you can't simply start thinking differently and no longer have social anxiety - but it does show that if you look at how you view others it can show the areas that you can work on in yourself.

I get angry when I think others are trying to "control me", but I know it stems back to my insecurity and belief that I always have to be right (or else I'll be worthless). I dislike authority figures in general, but that's really because they intimidate me and make me feel inferior. I assume attractive members of both sexes are vain and arrogant, but it's really that I feel very unattractive and assume they would reject me. Stereotyping others is a natural defense, but it can be either a barrier or a chance to see the areas that we can change in ourselves.
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Old 05-04-2010, 05:03 AM   #11 (permalink)
 
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powerful stuff...i guess to be what we want to be we need to embrace what we need to become
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Old 05-04-2010, 06:24 AM   #12 (permalink)
 
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good post. got me thinking
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Old 05-09-2010, 02:49 AM   #13 (permalink)
 
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I think that's very true, for everyone. Not necessarily that if someone thinks people are hurtful or deceitful that they were the one being hurtful or deceitful, but that at one point (or many) that person was betrayed and it just resonated for him/her. Of course, it is also how we treat others. This reminds me of the stories I've always heard about women suffering through domestic abuse and controlling partners, and how their partners would be SO paranoid about them possibly cheating on them, when the cause for their paranoia was the woman's partner's infidelity. I feel like I made some grammatical errors there, but I hope my point is still clear.
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