The following is Scott Noelle's Daily Groove for today. I just love this because I try very hard to not let societal expectations dictate my thinking or behavior. It is a tough ambition for sure!! So much of what we label 'good' or 'bad' is nothing more than culture, and nothing to do with what is actually good or bad. I believe there really is no reality, only one's own perception of things.
:: Transcending Culture ::
Imagine you're visiting a strange culture where people's perceptions are quite different from what you're used to.They're offended when you shake their hands, and they're honored when you spit on their feet. They believe that a broken mirror brings good luck, and they compete over who gets the privilege of cleaning the toilets.
After a while, you cease making any assumptions about the goodness or badness, rightness or wrongness of*anything*.
Now you see a little girl start to hit her mother. You await the mother's reaction... Will she be offended?Will she be delighted? Will she be indifferent?In that moment, you yourself have not assigned anymeaning to the hitting. It just *is*.
Congratulations! You've transcended culture and connected with Reality. As you observe your child's behavior today, pretend you're a stranger in a strange land who doesn't know what s/he is supposed to think about each behavior.Then *choose* an interpretation based on how good you feel when you think that thought.