Posted by: Michael Rickicki | 02/17/2020

The Last Word

Probably one of the hardest ad hoc spiritual practices that I have the opportunity to practice on a regular basis is that of allowing any person with whom I’m having a contentious discussion to have the last word. Whether it’s an irate customer, a resentful spouse or a snotty preteen, there are so many opportunities to practice what is often called “taking defeat into oneself” in the lojong tradition.

But, why is it so hard? There is the honeyed allure of anger that’s is the first trap I easily fall into, followed closely by a strong but ever-amorphous feeling of injustice. The third snare is ego; I just don’t want to be told what to do or belittled by anyone. And yet, what is won by claiming the last word? Not admiration. Not vindication. At best, I win the resentment of whomever I was speaking with.

May I always gift the last word to another. May I gladly take defeat upon myself.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


Shillelagh Studies

A hub for the music, culture, knowledge, and practice of Irish stick-fighting, past and present.