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In Distrust We Trust, Part Duh

by David Truman

Best practices: in distrust we trust

The other side of the story

I knew it!

Failing the trust test with God

Exactly what RULES?

Not to brag or anything, but here at LLF we sometimes act in a manner which is unusually generous. We feel it's only right to be the example. But we find that when we do that, we test people's ability to trust. And, as often as not, they flunk the trust test. They can't quite believe it, or accept it. What's up with that?

Here's how it happens: We meet someone new, and begin getting to know them. Before long, we come to understand many things about what they need (spiritually and practically), and we try to fill those needs as best we can. We take special care of them, and be unusually nice to them. Sometimes we even offer people a trip to see us when we hardly know them. And often, they begin to experience things that are new to them, like real happiness, feeling understood, and spiritual experiences of all kinds. That's when many people start to feel that this is all "too-good-to-be-true." Of course, it's up to them how they take it. But in reality, it is not too good to be true -- though it may be too good to be true to. And that's important.

You see, when it comes to trust, ego is opposed to it. An ego-driven life (meaning, a life that is "all about me") can only be built on distrust, not on trust. That's because self-centered life can only be justified by holding others as dangerous, untrustworthy, etc. If others are good, and worthy, and true, that calls on us to make some changes. And also, if great love and trust are possible -- and not dangerous or a pipedream -- then that also calls on us to make some changes. We can no longer justify being "all about me."

Best practices: in distrust we trust

Fear is the gold standard of ego's world. Trust is out -- way out. Fearful visions, expectations, and presumptions are routinely used to repel generous offerings. For example, if someone says, "I'll take care of you," ego-self says, "No you won't. You'll hurt and betray me. Why, didn't you read in the paper just the other day, three people were killed by someone who said they should trust him? So why should I trust you? Are you trying to kill me or something?"

That's ego-talk. It raves on about how the world is dangerous, and how people are out to get you, and how you shouldn't trust anyone else or else you're screwed. In this world, distrust has been raised to the standard of "best practices." Fear. Ego is all about it. Fear and cowardice. Chicken in, chicken out.

The other side of the story

With so much distrust, and so much trust in distrust as "the right way to live," one wonders if there's any room to consider the other side of the story? Would it be okay if we were to consider distrust as something other than safe and wise?

Hopefully -- before distrust brings every life on earth to complete and total ruin -- we'll look more carefully at the facts, and see that millions of people's lives have been ruined by distrust, and are being ruined by it. Looking squarely at the truth of the matter, one cannot help but see the glaring fact that far more people's lives have been ruined by distrust than have been ruined by trust.

And we can be much more specific about this. When you're busy distrusting others or distrusting the world, you are preventing the good and evoking the bad. Think about this: How can a person bring out the best in others unless they trust them? And how does distrust affect people and situations? And finally, and closest to home, how can anyone bring out the best in you if they distrust you?

The truth is, distrust endangers, if anything. And, trust protects. It certainly protects much better than distrust.

"I've had multiple experiences of trust protecting me -- trusting people, that is. One of them was very dramatic. Back in South Africa, I had an experience where I went for a walk, and these two guys started following me into the park and then yelling after me and acting very aggressive. And the still small voice said to me, "Don't just fear these guys. They're human beings. Love them, see them." So I turned around as they were walking after me so aggressively, and I said hi to them, and in that moment didn't fear them. They both stopped, aghast. One of them turned and walked away. The other one just burst into tears, and we ended up talking to each other for an hour there in the park about his life. If I had just been afraid or distrusting of them, who knows what would have happened? Trust literally protected me." -- Asha Amadon

I knew it!

The ego-self can only believe bad news. Good news is suspicious at best. So when good stuff is happening -- such as love and joy and acceptance -- the ego-driven person has mixed feelings. Of course good is nice and all, they feel, but it's not real. Or, it won't last. So, they can only hold their breath, and wait for the other shoe to fall. When will this fairy tale end? When will the bottom fall out of the elevator?

And, just as much as the good stuff is suspect to ego-mind, the bad stuff is credible. So, when bad stuff happens, there's great credibility, acceptance -- even relief. After all, it's hard to hold your breath that long! When the bad stuff happens, the feeling is, "At last the inevitable outcome has arrived! I knew it would! At least we're back to reality now, back on solid ground."

In a world of suspicious minds, all good is a setup -- a trap. It's setting us up for a major disappointment, or a betrayal of some kind. That tends to have unfortunate effects. For example:

In our experience, when we do good and generous things, we raise red flags of suspicion. The more generous we are, the more suspect we become. We're not trying to test anyone; but by acting in the manner that comes naturally to us, we are subjecting them to a trust test anyhow. It's a test of their faith, their willingness to trust. As we said, most people flunk that test. They are too suspicious, so they reject our offers.

The same thing has happened to many men or women who tried to create a love relationship with a distrusting person. That person could never accept that their love was true, could never really receive their honest devotion -- and so, the relationship was ruined.

But here's the thing: If a person fails the trust test with human beings, then, in all likelihood, he or she will fail the same test any time God is gracious. You see, one of these days, God's gonna be gracious. One of these days, God will try to give them everything. And when that happens, they'll have to decide whether it's too good to be true, or whether they can be true to it. Will they rise to the level in which trust is possible, or sink to the level in which distrust is a given?

Failing the trust test with God

In today's world, distrust is supposed to be a sign of wisdom. But there's a hitch with that: where distrust is considered wise, and trust is considered foolish, no person can receive their Divine inheritance. Because God is, by worldly standards, and by ego standards, "overly generous" -- and therefore, Divine generosity is suspect.

A good example is the experiences of Divine Grace that some people have. Once in a while, Divine energies will enter a person -- working to enlighten them, awaken them, or at least elevate them. But at such times, a common response is not gratitude, but fear. "What's happening? I'm being possessed. This is demonism!" That kind of thinking makes God unwelcome. With suspicion, distrust, and fear, people reject God's energy-gift -- and the next thing you know, they boot God out. The generous gift is nullified, and it's back to business as usual -- earn every dime, look out for number one, every man for himself. "You've got to look out for yourself, or who will?" "You can't trust anyone." "I'll earn my own way, thank you. For money, I'll work. For energy, I'll exercise. For security, I'll buy insurance. Never mind cooperation, mutual dependence, or long-term relationship. I don't want to rely on those things."

In the fear-based lives of prodigal sons and daughters, mutual dependence is anathema. There's a profound commitment, not just to healthy independence, but to non-dependence, and non-commitment. There's a profound aversion to interdependence and mutual service. Such is the regular dog-eat-dog world, and the every man for himself philosophy that it comes from. Tragic.

Exactly what RULES?

That's why it's so good when we offer people what they consider to be incredible. It gives them the chance to vote. What do you think? What's your vote?

Do you vote for the goodness and the generosity of existence, and for the fact that prayers for love and unqualified support are answered?

OR

Do you vote for the fact that what your dreams have been about, and what your prayers have been for, is all impossible -- and that therefore, when it appears that your dreams are coming true, it "can't really be happening."

Which will it be? In the lives and minds of most people, distrust rules. When it appears that our cries are answered, we think it must be a trick, a set up, an evil joke, a trap. It's a danger that should be avoided, refused, distrusted, and rejected.

That's what distrust does to people. They are not sufficiently open-hearted, and open-minded, and trusting enough to allow for their dreams coming true.

The irony of it all is this: Most people know full well what a huge problem distrust is. Many even cry themselves to sleep at night, complaining, "Life sucks. Distrust is everywhere. It shouldn't be that way. People should be willing to help you. We shouldn't have to do all this stuff to prove ourselves to others. We should just love one another. People should just trust each other upon a handshake."

But then when their cry is answered, they reject it. They distrust it. They don't believe that something as sane and wonderful as what they've envisioned, what their heart has pined for and prayed for, could possibly happen.

If we suspect and reject the good things that arise in our lives, we feed the ugly system we hate -- the system of distrust. And we return to lives based on that ego system: Every man for himself. Don't trust anybody. Steer clear of interdependence. Earn every dime. Get your energy from the stair stepper.

Back to business as usual, and tears on the pillow. Back to heartache and heartbreak over how terrible the world is, how unfair and stupid all this distrust is. Back to complaining how people are so distrusting. How no one gives you a chance. How no one cares about anybody any more. How everyone's just looking out for themselves -- and how rotten that way of living is. Back to being part of the problem. Back to epitomizing that very system.

You epitomize the system of distrust and all that it stands for when you choose to keep looking out for yourself, and to not trust in the generosity of another -- or in the generosity of God, for that matter. Now isn't that the height of tragedy? If it isn't, I sure don't know what is.


by David Truman

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