“When you bow to a mirror, the reflected image bows back” (Nichiren, 13th C Buddhist monk).
Our environment including the people around us are reflections of us. Whatever lessons they need to teach us are there, right in front of us. It is no point blaming anyone for the people that are placed in your life- just treat them as your teachers, even if they are unpleasant, they are necessary.
I knew a doctor with a husband who was always laughing and joking. I said enviously, “Life must be must be so good with a partner who is always laughing.” She replied,”You don’t know how stressful it is to be married to a clown.” I lost in touch with her and then came across her after 20 years last month. I learnt that she was finally free of the clown (divorced) and happy! She no longer works as a doctor- so what does she do now? Clowning…life is indeed strange! Another friend remarked after hearing of this story, not without irony, “Well, she must have learnt so much from her ex-husband.”
It is so true, we attract what we need to our lives and we learn from these people and circumstances. Like the character in the film, Ground Hog day, we will keep meeting similar people or facing similar circumstances, until we learn the lessons that we need to learn.