There is violence wherever you look. True, we rarely beat each other up in bar fights any more, but for every loving act that you experience there is unfortunately a mean, underhanded or fearful act waiting for you as well. You must be able to observe this negative energy in yourself as well as in others. I remember a moment early in my awakening stage when I must have said something insensitive to my assistant; the movement of her eye lids hit me like a sledge hammer. You can become very sensitive to these energy exchanges, and along a spiritual path you definitely will.
We spiritual folks are taught to be nice, helpful, kind and generous; so what do we do with the tension if deep down inside we want to do the opposite? Well, do something with this tension. Hurting others the way they have hurt you would only keep the wheel of karma spinning. No, digest this energy and do something constructive with it. Go out and do yard work; create something; pick up kick-boxing if you must. Cancer and the many auto-immune illnesses come in response to these accumulated frustrations and aggressions that have not been recycled. Protect your health, release the tensions that build up inside; life will encourage you to let go of some steam.
When you monitor life carefully you spot the yin and yang of energy everywhere. Suppressed feelings that come out in strange outbursts. You can monitor reactions and counter-reactions in daily interactions just as a martial artist would. Actually, that's what a spiritual traveler really is, life artists. Life gives us the outlets to learn, to take in, and to recycle the absorbed energy. When you view life from that perspective, events cease to be frustrations and problems literally become opportunities. Let life simply flow through you and catapult you to the next spiritual level.
A spiritual traveler is not a punching bag for other people's destructive energy. If you are surrounded by negative energy, it must mean that it is spiritually meaningful to you, otherwise they would simply leave you alone. When Jesus said, "When someone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also", it was not meant as an invite for abuse. It was meant as an encouragement to show your invulnerability to everyone. A spiritual traveler is assertive in all her interactions. Sometimes we have to receive incoming aggressive energy, but always and always will life offer us the opportunity to draw a line in the sand, and an outlet to recycle and compassionately release it.
You have no idea what peace and transformation awaits you. Every crisis, every opponent and every injustice was hand-picked to define you as the one you were born to be. If you manage to learn constructive assertiveness you have learned everything there is to know. From here on the journey HOME will be a child's play.