Thankfully, I re-read The Four Agreements on my flight home from Canada. I was prepared to read from awareness of the inner sacred self and not to form an agreement with the hater to hate more. Self-hatred is the most dangerous kind. I am always at choice to think different thoughts.
Don Miguel Ruiz writes that we are living in a dream in which we have incorrect beliefs about ourselves and therefore about others.
I am glad that i am awakening to my spiritual magnificence and attempting to stay connected to spiritual truth. I know that the old me, secretly believing that I wasn't good enough, would have tried to protect myself by striking back. (Albeit, somewhat blindly because I don't know who sent the letter.) I definitely would have berated myself for not being a good enough minister. In a way, I invited the criticism because I secretly believed it to be true. That self abuse has to stop now!
As Terry Cole-Whittaker wrote, "What you think of me, is none of my business!" However, what I think of me is really my business! And because what we think about, with feeling, comes about, there must be a matching experience in the world of effects.
Rudyard Kipling first published the poem, If, in 1909. the first verse is:
"If you can keep your head when all about youAre losing theirs and blaming it on you,If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,But make allowance for their doubting too;If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,Or being hated, don't give way to hating,And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:"
Ironically Kipling had a sad and tragic life yet his poem has inspired millions of readers to live a life of hich Don Miguel Ruiz would approve.
The next time you are tempted to feel bad about someone else's opinion of you, I encourage you to ask yourself if the Divine Presence would berate Itself. You know It could not. You are made in It's image and are worthy of good thoughts and experiences.