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« Thoughts On Our Soul Group and Forgiving Abusive People - Pt. 1 | Main | Fate and Free Will Pt. 1 - How Much Choice Does An Unconscious Person Have? »



A good friend (member of my soul group, actually) confronted domestic violence from his/her parent with Martial Arts moves.

All the suffering took a great deal of time to heal and move forward from. But my friend became more and more strengthened (tough), enlightened and confident in the years that followed.

As for the parent... Well, he never laid a hand on anyone again.


Excellent example, Warrior Lady!




Wonderful mental thoughts to riddle my brain with.




Right now i find myself being affected by the abusive behaviors of my boyfriends mother. It's completely indirect - i'm a by standard to her behavior toward him, but i can't help but feel overwhelmed by empathy to the mean things she has said and done to him.

Any advice?


Robert, thank you for this article, and especially these thoughts.

"When people in a family abuse each other by whatever means, or when we are abused by one who we thought was our friend, it arises from the choice of the abuser to externalize that behavior. While I agree that we must come to true peace and forgiveness toward those who have abused us, it does not make it right that it happened to begin with, nor does it mean we should believe it taught us much of anything. We do not have to go to jail to know we don't need to be there.

We are here to learn what is venerable, what is worthy, what evokes our highest ideas and feelings and actions. Abuse does not further these. While I agree we're all learning to come to a measure of peace and forgiveness in our lives, we can learn these best through beneficial interactions. And we can come to peace and forgiveness easier in the face of inadvertent well-meant misguided behavior than those things which were not necessary to begin with."

I have struggled most of my life with this notion that "everything is meant," and that when I have been abused, it is because I have somehow, on some "higher level," invited it into my life. (A family member is the worst one for promoting this view, and is NOT part of my Soul Family.) I have wrestled with guilt about feeling victimized, and let's face it - abusers ARE victimizing others and their behaviour should not be excused. Now, I am working on forgiving myself, which is easier knowing that I am not somehow "responsible" for their behaviour by "drawing it to myself."

A few years ago, I had two African Violet plants, which taught me about the principle of learning through beneficial means. One plant was at the office, and one was at home.

One day I was sitting at my kitchen table and really noticed my Afican Violet plant. It was growing, yes - but it had too many leaves, and it didn't bloom because of the northern exposure. In spite of giving it love and care (and talking to it, LOL), it was a twisted, unhappy Being. I wondered why.

Then I thought about my plant at work which was thriving, having the proper proportion of leaves and beautiful blossoms. People in the office always commented on how lovely it was.

I realized that the plant at home was growing in spite of the conditions, but it was abnormal and twisted. The plant in the office was also growing, but thriving, owing to having the "proper conditions for growth." These beautiful plant beings showed me that as humans, yes we can and do grow - but we can also become twisted unless the conditions for growth are optimal. We thrive when in beneficial conditions.

I also learned that it is not the abnormal plant's "fault" for being twisted, given the conditions it was growing in. It was doing the best that it could. The beautiful plant was also growing, yet it thrived because the conditions were optimal (proper amount of light, water, and love).

Anyway, thank you for your clear explanations about abuse. It is a long road to finding self-love and forgiveness. The understanding that we are not responsible for another's behaviour and choices helps - as does the realization that we do not somehow "create this for ourselves" or "draw it to us" on some undefined level.


Wonderful post. Thank you.


Caro Robert,

It still hurts, and the hurt unfortunately, never goes away because when you think it's gone, and that you're finally at peace, it comes back in another form.

Abusive people never stop, its stronger than them. In my case, i just hope that abuse will go away with them, whenever that happens. I've decided that the longer it takes, the stronger i will try to grow.

For now, i have to carry on, protect myself and the ones i love the best that I can.

Love soothes and i firmly believe that it can heal: it's the only remedy.



These beautiful plant beings showed me that as humans, yes we can and do grow - but we can also become twisted unless the conditions for growth are optimal. We thrive when in beneficial conditions.

Viki, this is a lovely take. But "beneficial" is relative.

I can honestly say, as an individual who didn't grow up in beneficial conditions, that I turned out great-- not twisted. In fact, I am confident enough to admit that I feel strong and capable of many things because of my experiences. Tough if you will.

I've watched many grow-up in "beneficial conditions" and turn out "twisted", too.

Some of the most beautiful, giving, pure-of-heart people I know have come from non-beneficial conditions. They're probably such wonderful souls because they know what pain feels like... and cannot imagine subjecting another to it. Their experiences equate to an understanding of global suffering that often goes silenced...

Just offering my two-cents on the subject and am not here to offend.


Hi W.L.and Viki
Maybe you're both right. We have free will - the plants don't really have any choice so are ultimately at the mercy of we who care for them!


Hi all - Thanks to all who left praise of the work. This obviously isn't the last word on the subject, and the next two articles I posted on this should be seen as the next step in an ongoing dialogue I've having with a person I know, love and trust who raised these very important questions.

Hi WarriorLady - Good for your friend. While I wish force of any sort to be unnecessary, those who will not see the light will definitely feel the heat! As for what you told Viki, I agree beneficial is very variable. What is beneficial for one may not be for another, and what is beneficial at one time may not be at another. Also that we have somewhat more choices than plants, since we can choose to move or not, get a nutrient or not, even though some would ignore what would save their life out of obtuseness or willful ignorance (that's why I did the next set of articles!) One point I am trying to make across these articles is that while we often can grow through abuse, it is not necessary in order to become our Highest Self. Unfortunately, though, due to ego and its wiring and willfulness, we often do put ourselves through unnecessary hardships to come out of ignorance and misguided desires.

Hi Robyn - You cannot do anything for another except to be a reminder that there are other, better ways to be. And to state what you see is happening, even if they are in denial. Here discretion is truly the better part of valor.

Hi Viki - Yes, an unfortunate part of modern psychology insists on blaming the victim by telling us we invited a problem. That would be like blaming the Poles for inviting Hitler to invade. Duh. I tried to address this several places in this 4 article series. It's also why I always remind people to "consider the source." While I agree we can learn from all that presents itself, the presenting may or may not have been necessary. Of course abusers always like to find reasons the abused invited it.

There are all kinds of reasons a being, whether plant, animal, or human thrives or does not thrive in an environment. Sometimes a cigar is in fact a cigar, and if the ph isn't right, peaches won't grow, regardless of any other condition. It's just so hard to become all-knowing....;-)

Hi Allesandra - I believe that our wound can make us strong, or drive us to do unhelpful things, depending on how we learn to live with the wound. Just because it's healed does not mean we ever forget it. I believe it's to help us detach from identifying with our body, feelings, and opinions, and open to how it links us with all others who suffer that wound or a variation. That bridges our sense of separateness and reminds us that as we heal, we can offer our experience to others in appropriate ways. And definitely, definitely, if there's one thing we have to learn from abuse, it's to make sure it doesn't happen again, or if it starts, we know how to respond appropriately. (Usually putting a LOT of distance between us and them!)

Hi Morvah - Yes, we have more at our disposal than the plants and animals, which is why the human realm of existence is where we re-learn connectedness, which the other realms never lost.

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