A Different Perspective on Booing

“It is only a comparison–so long as we are buried in the wretchedness of our earthly nature these streams of ours will never disengage themselves from the slough of cowardice, pusillanimity, and fear. We shall always be glancing around and saying: ‘Are people looking at me?’ ‘If I take a certain path shall I come to any harm?’ ‘Dare I begin such and such a task?’ ‘Is it pride that is impelling me to do so?’ ‘Can anyone as wretched as I engage in so lofty an exercise as prayer?'”  Teresa of Avila: First Mansions, Book Two

In Martin Scorcese’s film No Direction Home Bob Dylan talked about the booing he received after changing musical styles. He said you have to put booing in perspective and noted “you can kill someone with kindness too”. When we become hungry for applause we lose our lives and surrender our future. Many of us assume “booing” is a negative — but it may be an indicator we are moving in the right direction. We should not let the disapproval of others govern our lives.

Fear of what people think inhibits our spiritual progress. Teresa uses the word “pusillanimity” to emphasize her concern of letting the fear of what others think manage our spiritual lives. Pusillanimity comes from Latin “pusillus” (small or little) and “animus” (spirit or courage). Pusillanimous people are of small spirit or little courage and do not step forward in life and faith because of fear. This lack of courage is a problem. We remain a shadow of our true selves and we limit our investment in others.

We have to ask ourselves: Is the approval of others, no matter how loud the applause, worth losing our lives over? Bob Dylan had a different perspective on booing. Maybe we should too.

Jesus Follower, Blogger, Public Speaker. Teresaofavilaturns500.wordpress.com

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Posted in 1st Mansions - Chapter 2
2 comments on “A Different Perspective on Booing
  1. Graham Matthews says:

    Always learn from these postings. Applause; appreciation, boos as reaction for or against, dialogue to learn.

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