Friday, March 30, 2012

Turn The Other Cheek

Today a new learning inspired me:

I just found out that "turn the other cheek" does not mean to turn away from aggression, accept aggression, or ignore it. The expression was originally about asserting equality and civily calling a person on their act.

When reading through wikipedia, I found this:

"In ancient times, striking someone deemed to be of a lower class with the back of the hand was used to assert authority and dominance. If the persecuted person 'turned the other cheek,' the discipliner was faced with a dilemma. The left hand was used for unclean purposes, so a back-hand strike on the opposite cheek would not be performed. The other alternative would be a slap with the open hand as a challenge or to punch the person, but this was seen as a statement of equality."

So the call to turn the other check isn't about just accepting a bad thing, or letting a person get away with something; it's about asserting one's equality, modeling proper behavior instead of reflecting back anger, and giving the other person the opportunity and space to recognize their misdeeds and make a change. 

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