A blind person did not choose to be blind, but can choose limitations blindness places on his life. That’s even more true of limitations caused by emotional distress. We can’t prevent the trauma that triggers it, but can choose limitations it imposes on our lives. Many people enjoy reliving their negative experience. To see their experience as somehow positive would seem would absurd to them.
There’s a saying, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”
If you’re not ready to see or accept that we don’t choose to be blind, crippled, or post-traumatic, but can choose limitations such challenges cause in life, you’re NOT ready to hear this. Don’t feel bad , or think I’m judging you. I’m not trying to invalidate your experience, beliefs or values.
Don’t Choose Limitations from Mental Illness
A FB friend named Darby Penney believes, as I do, that there is no such thing as “mental illness.” I’m not saying the experience is not valid or important for many. I’m just trying to get my peers and others to see their role as pioneers, instead of victims, and not choose limitations on their lives. It wasn’t easy for me. To this day, I struggle with seeing the positive side of my condition.
Some books I’ve read, over and over, did it for me. The Bible was too difficult for me to follow, and I didn’t buy into half the things the preachers preached about punishing me, casting me out of “Heaven,” then condemning me to eternal burning in “Hell.” Part of me rejected that idea in self-defense as nonsense, just to make room for something that did make sense.
Conversation with God
The conversation many find hard to swallow — yet seem perfectly sensible among people with schizophrenia –Neal Donald Walsch, the author of Conversations with God says to God. “May I interrupt you here?”
“I hate to interrupt God when He’s on a roll,” Walsch says, but I’ve heard this talk of unlimited potential before, and it doesn’t square with the human experience… What about the challenges of those born with mental and physical limitations? Is their potential unlimited?”
God replies: “You have written so in your own Scripture –in many ways and in many places. Look to see what you have written in Genesis, chapter 11, verse 6, of your Bible.”
It says, “And the Lord said, ‘Behold, the people are one, and they are all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.'”
God ask the author, “Can you trust that?”
“That does not answer the question of the feeble, the infirm, and the handicapped.” the author responds.
God’ replies: “Do you think they are limited, as you put it, not of their choice? Do you imagine that a human soul encounters life challenges –whatever they may be — by accident? Is this your imagining?”
I was empowered after realizing that my condition—as hard as it was to accept–was by choice: the Free Will God gave all of us. A blind person can’t decide to see, but CAN decide how limiting blindness is. We are all only as limited as we choose to be.