Everyone knows what the “Golden Rule” is – “treat others the way you want to be treated.” However, this short-hand definition is a bit short-sighted, only focusing on behavior (including words), it lacks the experience of heart behind the sentiment.
In the past I would frequently fall prey to an occupational hazard of going into ‘teaching-mode’ or ‘counselor-mode’ with the intention to convey something IMPORTANT to my listeners. A grave error – based on an assumption that I know what they need to hear, not to mention that I know anything at all!! LOL No matter how well-meaning, such an attitude smacks of over-lording and arrogance, implying that they ‘don’t know any better’.
What if the practice of the Golden Rule included tuning into the person, making eye-contact, being with them in a slowed down manner? Truly listening and present, we treat them the way we would want to be treated were we in the same situation, circumstance, or condition. To not treat them as we would want, nay need, to be treated, would be the same as assaulting ourselves. We couldn’t do it, in good conscience; we would couldn’t be anything but kind.