Roy Masters From the Introduction to the book How to Conquer Negative Emotions
Cruel people have power; they get their energy from you through the way you respond to them. Hypocrites have the same wickedness operating through a deceptive shield of phony innocence. It, too, gets inside you by the way you react to it.
Your life is in danger from people, some of whom could even be members of your own family, who chip away, harp, nag and aggravate the life out of you until you feel like killing them or yourself.
YOU CANNOT FIGHT THEM WITH RESENTMENT, because they use your resentment to drive you crazy, to make you conform, to bring out the worst in you and terrify you into not facing them and their kind.
Take heart. There is not one single problem in the world that you cannot solve if you will learn to stop being resentful toward people. You are indeed the sum total of your experiences, but another way of saying this is that you are burdened by your past.
Unless you learn how to respond properly in the present, you will continue to let the ugly world get inside you and build on that past. And without self-control, that is the only kind of future you have.
Respond wrongly to pressure just one time—and what aggravates you has got you. Your mind and body must go on responding slavishly until you find the Truth that makes you free.
You are not alone in your dilemma. The wrong emotional response to all sorts of pressure is currently making everyone sick and depressed and driving all of us into conflict with ourselves. To solve the pressure-caused conflicts, people turn to drink, tobacco and drugs, legal or illegal.
Look at it this way: your reactions, being compulsive, have become a subtle form of obedience, and emotional obedience is really a form of slavery. Behind the cruel and relentless pressures that zealous people apply to you (sometimes in the name of good) is a selfish motive that compels you to be like it and to go along with it—to sin, in other words.
Because it has upset you, you are out of control and not living your own life. No wonder you feel guilty and depressed.Because no one has cared enough to teach you how not to respond, and because you have not yet discovered this vital secret, life now seems meaningless, hopeless, and depressing.
You have worried, but worrying has made matters worse.All your sexual, family, and business problems arise directly from your failing to respond in a right way to what is wrong and, it might be added, making everyone respond wrongly to you when you have been upset.
Conflict with yourself becomes conflict with others as you take it out on them.
“Your mind and body must go on responding slavishly until you find the Truth that makes you free.”
Most of the things that are wrong with your life—your marriage, your health, your children—can be straightened out very easily by discovering how to conquer your negative emotions.
Your emotional upsets have made you feel guilty. Even though you might have been technically correct in what you said or did, if you did it resentfully, your emotions confused you, and when you began to doubt yourself, you experienced conflict, depression and fear.
Resentment destroyed your objectivity, and, failing to see clearly, you made terrible errors of judgment. These, in turn, led to a fear of making decisions, so that perhaps you began to lean too much on others for guidance, and you know how upsetting it can be if those others happen to be wrong or take advantage of you.
You must learn how to be patient with cruel and thoughtless people. You must learn to be poised and calm; otherwise, what is wrong in them shows up in you and makes you look like the bad guy.
Everyone then becomes so fascinated with what went wrong with you that they fail to see what they did wrong to you, and that experience is upsetting, frustrating and scary.
Cruel, unthinking people feed off the way you respond to their needling; they walk away self-righteous and satisfied, leaving you frustrated, confused, revengeful and depressed.
They get their power from your reaction, while your resentment often makes you feel like the guilty one.
“Successful,” domineering, unprincipled people lord it over you, drain you and make your life wretched; BUT THEY ARE ALWAYS SURE OF GETTING TO YOU THROUGH YOUR REACTIONS.
The dehumanizing pressure to achieve and to study is changing people into animals, animals out of control, in mortal conflict with other animals.