Annoyances and Irritations

The light of the soul is bright, but dense clouds of human ignorance obscure it. Where are you in terms of your effort to make your life brighter?

Deng Ming Tao, 365 Tao

For me, the thing that most dims my light shining in the world is annoyances. Little everyday annoyances, with myself or with other people or things. As Anton Chekhov put it, “Any idiot can handle a crisis – it’s this day-to-day living that wears you out.” It is the day-to-day annoyances that get to me – my husband’s seeming inability to actually close a drawer all the way, my kids’ inability to see the floor as a space to walk on rather than a shelf for all their stuff, the stupidity of the things that are happening in our government, and nearly any demonstration of stupidity can tick me off, really, if I’m not in the right frame of mind. Then there is the meta-annoyance at being annoyed itself – I get annoyed that I am annoyed.

So when I feel annoyed, I am not the calm, rational person with perspective and far-sighted vision that I would like to be. My light dims with the clouds of annoyance and frustration and sometimes even anger. The “watcher” in me, who can usually sit back and observe everything with amusement, becomes caught up in these feelings and for those few moments, the fog creeps in…

“Never invoke the gods unless you really want them to appear. It annoys them very much.” — G. K. Chesterton

“Few things are harder to put up with than the annoyance of a good example.” — Mark Twain

“People who think they know everything are a great annoyance to those of us who do.” — Isaac Asimov

“If you can’t annoy somebody, there’s little point in writing.” — Kingsley Amis