Hartley Sawyer Is Worthy Of Forgiveness, As Are All Of Us…

Why do so many people want to indefinitely hold others to their past transgressions? Why can’t we all find forgiveness in our hearts and trust that people can and do sometimes change for the better? I ask these questions because of an article I just read on TVline.com recently about Hartley Sawyer who was an actor that got fired from the TV show “The Flash” back in the beginning of June for racist and misogynistic tweets dating back to the 2012 to 2014-time frame. While the article itself talked positively about how his character was going to be written out of The Flash, it was the discussion that took place below it in the comments section that was mostly filled with nothing but negativity and judgment.

Countless individuals claimed that since Hartley was guilty of these toxic behaviors six to eight years ago, he’s always going to be guilty of them and wouldn’t ever change. A number even went so far as to say that once a person hits their 20’s to 30’s, they are who they are and aren’t going to change much anymore. Overall, I felt the vast majority of all those comments were really hurtful towards Hartley and it truly got to me.

First off, everyone is fully worthy of forgiveness and redemption and yes, I do mean EVERYONE! Even the guy that molested me in my early teens was worthy of that and did receive that from me. While the things Hartley tweeted over six year ago were indeed quite distasteful and toxic, it is unfair to hold him to that for the rest of his life. That person I was in my 20’s and 30’s is so far from who I am now. Much of my own behaviors during those two decades were no better than Hartley’s, but I changed, and I spiritually grew for the better. Now, I’m so different from who I was back then.

Second, I’m always amazed at all the finger pointing that goes on in our world, where everyone quickly jumps on the bus of persecution towards another, labeling them as wrong, and verbally expressing their displeasure at another’s behaviors. But, I can promise you that every single person who does point their finger, like so many did towards Hartley Sawyer in those comments, is guilty at some point in their life of saying or doing something toxic that hurt another.

Lastly, I just want to say that over the years, I’ve worked with people suffering from addiction of all ages, including a guy that was in his late 60’s and had spent his entire life, a good 40 years and then some, being toxic, saying hurtful things, with most assuming he’d probably never change. Yet, I sat down with him week after week, attended meetings with him, and helped guide him through the 12 Steps of recovery. And you know what…he got better. He did change…even though he was in his late 60’s! Five years later, he’s now helping others, and an amazing husband to his wife, something he fell short quite a bit through much of his earlier adulthood.

So, the bottom line is that Hartley Sawyer is worthy of forgiveness, as are all of us, no matter what we’ve ever done or said. Look, if every job, friend, partner, and individual in this world based everything on our past transgressions and never gave us the chance to change or demonstrate we’ve changed, we’d all most likely never get a job again, make any new friends, ever have a partner, or connect to any new individuals, because the focus would always remain on the mistakes we’ve made and never on any good we ever try to do. In light of that, maybe we all could start practicing giving a little more forgiveness to those who’ve made mistakes, because there may come a day when we need some of that for mistakes we’ve made, mistakes we all are worthy of forgiveness of, NO MATTER WHAT!

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

I Don’t Like To Be Picked On, AT ALL…

I don’t like to be picked on, AT ALL. And I especially don’t like being picked on when it’s around a group of people. I’ve been picked on my whole life, for whatever the reason. Ever since I was a little kid, I always seemed to become the recipient of everyone’s jokes and pranks. Getting laughed at by a number of people all at once was a typical occurrence. And while everyone else always seemed to be laughing at me, I was constantly crying silently within, wishing to God they’d stop.

What I’ve learned over time is that anyone who tends to frequently make fun of someone else or has a laugh regularly at another’s expense is because deep down they’re totally insecure about some part of themselves and may not even be aware of it, that is until the tables get turned onto them. Because once they are, once they become the recipient of being made fun of, they usually get quite angry and irritated.

The fact is, I don’t think anyone really likes being made fun of, especially when it’s picking apart their flaws or imperfections. The simple reality of why anyone does this type of behavior is to take the focus off of themselves, to make sure no one ever sees their own flaws or imperfections. Because when everyone else is laughing at the person they’re picking on, no one is going to be laughing at their own shortcomings.

What I find the most frustrating though about getting picked on is when the person picking on me tells me I need to “lighten up” or “develop a thicker skin”. Because, you know what?

I DON’T NEED TO DO EITHER!

While I may be a sensitive person and while I may be an emotional person, I don’t need to ever change myself just to become a better recipient of getting picked on. No one should have to change any part of themselves just to become a better recipient of another’s jokes and pranks. Lightening up or developing a thicker skin is solely that person’s way of wanting to feel better about their toxic behavior. Because deep down, their Spirit knows it isn’t right and also knows it’s causing more pain than good. Yet, so long as they keep getting everyone else to laugh at who they’re picking on, they generally will keep doing the toxic behavior anyway. That is, until one day, when the tables fully get turned onto them, when one of their flaws or shortcomings become the constant recipient of another’s jokes and pranks, as it’s then they start truly feeling the terrible pain of that.

Picking upon another’s flaws and imperfections and having a good laugh at their expense is by far the worst type of humor out there in my humble opinion. But you know what I find to be the best type of humor? When people learn to make fun of themselves, when they take their own flaws and imperfections and make light of them. That’s pretty awesome whenever I see people doing that. On NBC’s America’s Got Talent, I’ve seen both a person with a severe stuttering issue, and another with Tourette’s Syndrome, both take the stage and make the most incredible comedic routine about their limiting conditions. When a person makes fun of themselves and is the one driving the humor, it always feels a lot brighter, a lot lighter, and ok to laugh at. But when a person has some type of limiting condition, like in my case, with severe hypochondria and OCD, for another to make fun of that, never feels good to me one bit. Because that type of humor isn’t coming from an unconditionally loving or spiritual type of place.

Truth be told, the quickest way for me these days to start distancing myself from someone is when they’re regularly picking on me and having a good laugh at my expense. I’ve developed a thick enough of skin now to at least say I don’t need someone like that in my life. And just because someone tells me they only pick on those they like doesn’t change the fact it still hurts when it happens.

The bottom line is that I don’t want to be a doormat for someone else’s humor anymore. It never feels good and I know that many others who’ve walked in my shoes, who once were a “nerd”, “dork”, “geek” or “freak” or labeled something else demeaning like that in their childhood like I was, would totally understand what I’m saying and agree.

So, the next time you think that picking on me, or anyone for that matter, is a good thing to do, if you truly care about me, or the person you are doing it to, you might want to stop and make fun of yourself instead. Because having a good laugh at my or another’s expense, laughing at one of our flaws or imperfections, things we already struggle with enough in life, is not a spiritual quality, nor is a quality I ever wish to have in someone I call a friend.

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson

The Truest Reason Why I’m So Apolitical…

When I wrote an article just over a week ago now, about my apolitical stance when it comes to voting, I received some pretty harsh comments on Facebook about it. One person suggested my stance on voting probably came from a life of privilege, while another flat out said they had zero respect for me on the subject, and yet still another agreed with them both. Sadly, it seemed as if my true intention of that article got overlooked and was replaced with judgments and character assassination. Regrettably, none of them really knew the truest story behind why I am the way I am when it comes to politics, because I didn’t write about it. But I decided to today.

I grew up in a family that was filled with a normalcy of chaos, confusion, alcoholism, regular attempts at suicide, and wondering what bomb might drop next within it. I walked on eggshells more than not. Whether Ronald Reagan or George Bush was President back then, never changed any of the craziness in my household one bit. My parents remained imbalanced, unhealthy, addicted-ladled individuals, regardless of who was in what political position. Politics just wasn’t something taught or learned in my household, it just wasn’t something we ever talked about. But screaming, rage, throwing things, silence, and guilt trips were. All the years of my youth were spent in fear of my parents and what might happen next in my household. So, who was President or Vice President or Governor or Senator or Congressman didn’t matter, because I lived in fear of what was right in my own home. And none of those political people were ever going to change any of that hell of existence.

When I became of legal voting age, I had already succumbed to alcohol and drug addiction to calm the terrible voices from my youth and to ease the pain of how I was raised, which not only included the craziness from within my childhood home, but also outside of it from having been molested by a coach on one of the teams I had been on, and of having constantly been bullied my entire youth. There was no politics or leadership out there in the world that would have changed a single thing in all the PTSD I was living with. When I finally sobered from alcohol and drugs, those demons continued to live on and on and on, no matter what I did to try to stifle them. I went from counselor to counselor and tried medication after medication to suppress those terrible voices. Politics didn’t matter to me, because I was still in survival mode, even as an adult, trying to free myself from all my inner turmoil, which by then included a father’s suicide and a mother’s tragic drunken fall down the stairs. So, who was going to be in political office became unimportant because my energy was fully invested in trying to free myself from all the mental and emotional pain I constantly lived with. I had to fight hard just to keep going, to not take my life, and to not give up on myself. At the core, I spent every bit of my energy just trying to free myself from those terrible voices from my past, voices that weren’t ever going to be removed by any President or any political leader.

Frankly, living in the hell I’ve lived in, with the lack of appropriate upbringing, with all the PTSD I’ve experienced, and now with all the physical pain I’ve continued to endure, I’m a walking miracle for even still being alive. So, choosing not to invest any of my energy in this long-standing Democrat versus Republican battle or in this never-ending fight for this right or that right isn’t because I’m ignorant or don’t care. It’s because I’ve been spending my entire life just trying to simply survive in a world that’s constantly been tossed upside down from things outside of my control, things that Donald Trump nor Joe Biden nor any President nor any political person will ever be able to change.

The only person that can change any of those things is me. That’s why I continue to choose to focus my energy on that, so I don’t kill myself from all the PTSD I’ve had to fight through in my life just to keep going. And it’s also why I continue to choose to focus whatever energy remains in helping those people in this world who too have been traumatized like I have, whose lives aren’t going to get any better just because of whomever is in some political office. People like those dying of addiction. People like those who’ve been severely abused. People like those who’ve come from broken homes. People who’ve never known what it feels like to be truly loved unconditionally. It is people like us whose lives NEVER change no matter who gets in any seat of political power.

So, maybe now, my critics of my apolitical stance in life may understand a little better why I truly am this way at my core. But if you still don’t, and you still find yourself judging me right now, know I love you unconditionally anyway and don’t judge you for feeling the way you do about me. Just know that when we all stop judging each other for our individual stances in life and start unconditionally loving each other a lot more, maybe we won’t care so much about who becomes our next President, because our next President will simply be a reflection of the unconditional love we already have for each other…

Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson