Patience and Kindness



I have a neighbor who is very loud and disturbs my peace. I can’t enter or leave the house without her talking to me, yelling things and being intrusive, although I’ve set boundaries. I’ve told her to keep it down, but she does not get it. It is very annoying. Since I live directly next to her, I can’t ignore her like they do a few doors down. Please help.

—Ray, USA


Dear Ray,

What the chances of your simply moving elsewhere?

Are you a meditator? Are you a spiritual seeker? (I assume so.)

“Whatever comes of itself, let it come……be even minded and cheerful.” OK: so this is a test, generated by some past action(s) of your own. The way to pass this test of being annoyed and harrassed by this person, is to meet her pleasantly and calmly. Challenge yourself to see just how kind and calm you can be when she accosts you.

I don’t mean to suggest that you accept abusive behavior, so much as to see her as your friend. Maybe she has her own problems and just needs someone to accept her as she seems to be. By doing this and seeing her as Divine Mother donning an unpleasant form to test your patience and equanimity (and charity), you will pass her test and, who knows, maybe she will cease her behavior. Maybe she is the key to some important change or shift in your own life and karma.

See this not only as a test, but a gift. Try it, in any case, for a week, or a month, at least. Train your mind to view this irascible neighbor as “an angel in disguise.”

Be compassionate for you don’t know what tests and trials she has gone through. Maybe she was brought up this way and has never known calmness, patience, or kindness.

You may be able to help her even as you help yourself overcome your (natural) repugnance. Life is a drama. Without a sense of humor, no one can remain halfway sane.

Try it and let us know in a month or so how it goes! Ok?


Nayaswami Hriman