Are You Motivated More by Love, Fear, or Hatred?

I ran into a loose shower knob recently, and I see how it is like me.
Properly functioning shower knobs are easily turned off… just keep turning until it stops. This loose knob did not work that way; I could easily turn it past the off position and it would drip. In order to turn it off, I had to pay close attention to ensure that I had found the correct position. Cavalier turning would not result in an off shower.
Minds are similar. There is a pivot point upon which we decide how to be. At its core, that pivot point is often love, fear, or hatred (though we could add to that list: pride, for instance). When we change our pivot point away from love, we try to mask it, because we cannot bear the thought that our behaviors might be grounded in fear or hatred.

  • Opinions become rants.
  • Connoisseurs become snobs.
  • Concerns become judgments.
  • Coulds become shoulds.
  • Cares become constraints.
  • Inquiry becomes doubt becomes indecisiveness.
  • Pride becomes arrogance or narcissism.
  • Informed becomes righteous.
  • Introspection becomes navel-gazing.
  • Sharing becomes preaching.
  • Encouraging becomes not knowing when to say no.
  • Being willing to say no becomes not knowing when to say yes.
  • Desire for order becomes unbending rigidity.
  • Required becomes forced.
  • Competency and authority becomes power and tyranny

Such states must be deliberately navigated. Cavalier use of one’s mind otherwise results in the less desirable of the two postures.
It’s easy to see when the shower knob is not right. Harder to see when the mind isn’t.