A post on Community, Integrity, and Calling Out People who Cross Your Threshold Of Shit.
On Christmas an article in the NYTimes was published entitled, “A Spiritual Leader Gains Stature, Trailed by a Troubled Past”, that is essentially an exposé on Marc Gafni, rehashing old transgressions of his because he and his organizations are gaining significant power again.
The article served as a lightning rod for a large amount of latent energy to come rushing to the surface, desiring to take Marc Gafni down.
I read a fair amount of the commentary and posts being written because I know Marc, the Integral community he is a part of, and many people who are both strong supporters and detractors of him.
I am also very interested and invested in the concepts and constructs of Community, Integrity, Forgiveness, Standards and Morality.
One of the most insightful statements I read written about Marc’s past and path was that the “systematic vulnerability he is exposing is preying on those who live by the ‘benefit of the doubt’”.
The idea that “benefit of the doubt’ is a systemic vulnerability that is regularly being exploited really hit home for me.
And I began pondering a related concept I’m calling the Threshold of Shit.
What is the Threshold of Shit we’re willing to tolerate from people in our lives before we’re willing to do something about it?
I believe many people’s and their community’s Thresholds of Shit are way too high.
Thus, their life and community is interspersed and surrounded by lots of Shit.
I see people doing shitty things do other people all the time with impunity and almost zero accountability, because 1) it is not illegal and 2) the community of people close to them is willing to give them the benefit of the doubt.
This includes Very Shitty things like: Treating Romantic Partners Terribly in Breaking up. Fucking over Business Partners. Exploiting Customers with Borderline Immoral Marketing.
And less Shitty, but still Shitty things like: Narcissistically ignoring anyone else’s Reality, Unwittingly Projecting Negative Emotional States Onto Other People. Not Taking Responsibility for One’s Own Actions and Energy.
I want to live in a world and community where people get called on their SHIT.
And not when it becomes a Pile of Shit…Right When They Shit. Redhanded.
1) It keeps places beautiful, smelling nice, growing, healthy and clean.
2) It actually serves the Shitter. Once they know they can’t get away with their shit, the incentives of the system are such that there are no more shitty shortcuts to get what they want. The only way to get what they want is to BECOME A BETTER PERSON.
I’m annoyed and angered by how many shitty things people get away with because the Threshold of Shit most people are willing to Tolerate is just way too high.
I won’t stand for Shitheads in my life nor shitheads in the community I’m growing.
If you shit on me or my community members you will be called out and…
Then given the opportunity to atone, improve and enter right relationship with right action.
Or if not, Taken Down by a White Hot Sword of Truth. (h/t to Adam Gordon for inspiration for the imagery wink emoticon )
Most of this post isn’t about Marc, it’s about what reading about Marc brought up for me.
I haven’t read enough or talked to enough people to have a position I’m confidently willing to get behind. But for now what I’d say is, I like much of Marc’s writing and his vision for an Integral Spiritual World, but given his past abuses of power, and the amount of mistrust that clearly surrounds him I don’t see how he can be the Leader of an Organization without betraying his own values. For if he stands for a Movement that envisions a new kind of Wise, Loving and Trustable World…but the Movement and World he wants to see come into Reality loses trust, credibility and momentum as a result of him leading it, I don’t see how he can put himself in a leadership role unless he values his own personal power and expression more than the movement and ideals he stands for.
TLDR: Don’t Tolerate Shit in Your Life. Call out the Shitheads. Enjoy Peace, Serenity, and Mutual Accelerated Growth.