No one is perfect. Not me, not you and not anyone else! We are all a mixture of the good, the bad and the ugly!
I am sure you know The Story of Two Wolves. Very briefly, a young boy is being taught by his grandfather, a Cherokee Chief, about the battle between good and bad that rages inside each one of us and he uses wolves to represent each side of the battle. When the child asks,”Which one will win?”
The grandfather replies, “The one you feed.”
You can Google this to get the full context. There is no doubt that what we feed our mind, body and soul shapes our character, health and spirit but in this blog I want to talk about the uglies.
Every day news bulletins beam into our homes examples of all sorts of ugly. There is a long list, and I am sure you recognise ugly when you see it. Often they are actions carried out whilst under the influence of mind altering substances. The uglies come in all shapes, sizes, ages, genders, professions, demographics, peoples and cultures.
Our ugly is the direct outworking of the absence of self control or self discipline. This brings me to the topic of discipline. To understand discipline firstly we need to understand its purpose and character. Sometimes things are best understood by knowing what it is not, so here goes;
Discipline is not abuse, it is not intended to humiliate or ridicule another, it is not to be administered out of anger, frustration, a need to demonstrate power or show who is the boss. It is not yelling, making threats, idle or otherwise, or trying to emotionally manipulate. Correct discipline is administered with love, it is firm and fair, it states clearly where the boundary is and that when violated there will be a consequence which will be carried through. There is only one purpose of discipline. Discipline is applied externally to another so that they can develop internal self discipline and thereby have a happy and productive life.
Self discipline has flow on effects. One who will discipline self will also respect self and one who respects self will respect others. You can see why discipline is so very important. It is very difficult for a person with no self discipline to discipline a child with love and for the purpose of teaching self discipline. This is why children are yelled at, abused, insulted, neglected and even beaten to the point where their fragile little bodies cannot survive. Unfortunately authorities confuse this horrific behaviour with the right of loving and self disciplined parents to apply a short, sharp smack to a well padded bottom very occasionally and when definitely needed. It will not be needed often. We need to feed and encourage the good, starve the bad and discipline the uglies.
In order to address the uglies, we need to understand discipline, its character and its purpose in our homes, schools and courts otherwise life will get very ugly.