Living to be what the situation is calling us to be-- doing what it is calling us to do-- would flip our life around. Turn it inside out and upside down, kill us and resurrect us in one reality-transforming instant. As it is, we live to get the most out of every situation that comes along. "What's in this for me?" is the question that guides our life. "How can I get what I want, here and now?" To think that the situation has needs of its own that we can meet out of the goodness of our own little heart, with nothing to gain, get, acquire, amass... Well that's an unconventional thought! And one we are not inclined to consider! You can see how religion was invented to keep us safe from the intrusion of The Mystery of situational neediness into our happy (Or soon to be happy, the minute we get what we want and have our way throughout eternity) life. Religion makes no claims upon us and our time. We genuflect, make the sign of the cross (Or their equivalents across all religions) and go on about our life, none the worse for wear. But to throw us vulnerable and at the mercy of every situation for as long as our life lasts is just a monstrosity of a concept! It's like an invasion of vampires from Mars, maybe worse! Forget it! We are not going there! Ever! And The Mystery settles down to wait us out.
Growing up is caring in the right way, at the right time, about the right things. Nobody can tell us how to do that. We live our way to right assessment, right interpretation, right perspective, right view point, right seeing, right hearing, right knowing, right understanding, right doing, right being. The key is self-awareness, self-reflection, self-examination, self-exploration, self-transparency, self-correction... all along the way. This is where Dharma comes into play. Dharma is Right Duty. It is doing what is called for in the time and place of our living-- doing the right thing, in the right way, at the right time, moment-by-moment, day-by-day, all our life long. We should/ought/must always do what needs to be done-- what needs us to do it-- in each situation as it arises, all our life long. And we cannot know what that will be, or should/ought/must be, prior to the moment as it unfolds before us. This is what Jesus was talking about when he said, "The spirit is like the wind that blows where it will." The spirit doesn't know where it is going, or what it is doing next. It responds to the circumstances as they develop in ways that are appropriate/fitting to the occasion, and it never knows-- it cannot know-- what that will be before the time for acting. In precisely that moment, we act, the spirit acts, our spirit acts, without contrivance, without concern for our own welfare, our own profit, our own gain, our own benefit, to do what is called for with the gifts we bring to the moment, right here, right now. And do it again in the next moment flowing from this one. Sometimes that means taking a nap when it is time to take a nap.
What is your response? That is where you exercise your only control in each situation as it arises. We are in charge of our response. We are responsible for our response. "It's people like you who make people like me hate people like you," is missing the point of "people like me." The point of each of us is to not be yanked around by "people like you," or by any aspect of our life, and made to do what is against our will and purpose, but to live from our own center, with balance and harmony in offering what is being called for moment-by-moment out of the gifts/genius/talents/abilities/etc. that we have to offer the circumstances of our life in the time left for living. We are here to be ourselves in response to our life! To incarnate ourselves anew in each moment of each day. We do that by the response we make to each moment of each day. What is your response? You dream a dream. What is your response in the dream to the dreamed situation? What is your response outside the dream, as you reflect on it? Your response, in the dream and out of it, is what your dream is about. We dream ourselves into responses worthy of us. We grow up-- we grow ourselves up-- by examining, studying, exploring, investigating, the responses we make to our dreams and to our life throughout our life. Every situation asks something of us. How do we respond? What response do we make? The first proper response in each situation, is to slay the dragon whose name is Thou Shalt! (Joseph Campbell) and live in the moment fresh from the kill, free to be exactly what the moment needs us to be, however foreign to the shoulds, oughts, and musts at work in every situation to keep us from responding appropriately to the needs of the moment as it opens before us. What response will we make? That is our question to answer in each moment of each situation of each day for as long as life shall last. In light of what do we live? Moment-to-moment?