Written by Mary Anne Thomas

Resentment is a feeling we're not supposed to have. "Resentment is the cause of broken relationships and health problems," one psychology book says. Yet, when people hurt us, isn't it natural to resent the hurt? It is, and the definition of resentment proves it. "To resent is to feel indignantly aggrieved at an act, a situation, or a person." The French root of the word is "to feel strongly." According to these definitions, resentment doesn't look so bad. In fact, it looks like a desire- booster. It causes a strong reaction to something that we feel compelled to address.

So, why does our world believe resentment is so harmful? Because resentment is not being used as a desire-booster by most people. It's a feeling that is frowned upon . . . stigmatized as being the cause of all our problems . . . and therefore left to smolder on its own.

With this issue of Mindzine, you're going to learn how to use resentment the way it was intended to be used . . . as a desire-booster . . . and you'll see how easy resentment is to work with. First, let's make a list of the experiences that usually cause resentment.

Being put-down
Being misunderstood
Being treated unfairly
Being ignored
Being abandoned
Being dumped with guilt
Being lied to
Being misled
Being tricked
Being cheated
Being betrayed

It's hard to realize how poorly we've been treated, isn't it? If you've had a few experiences like the ones on our list, you'll want to expand this exercise by writing about them in your personal journal. Writing about hurt makes hurt easier to handle. If you've had more than a few hurtful experiences, email me ( An exercise from my new workbook, "An Adventure of the Mind" is especially designed to help with hurt feelings -- and I'll send it to you as a gift.

Now, we're ready to use resentment as a desire-booster. First, draw a contrast between the way you were treated in the past and the way you'd like to be treated in the future. To do that, just make a list of words that describe the characteristics you encountered -- the ones that hurt you -- and then look up the opposites of those words. For example, I was once very badly hurt by someone I was fond of. Something about me annoyed her, but I never truly knew what it was. I asked, several times, but only got incomplete or hazy answers that didn't make sense to me. I often felt confused and insecure, and after a misunderstanding I was rejected without being given a satisfactory explanation about what had gone wrong. I felt so rejected, so unacceptable. I wrote about the experience in my personal journal and was honest enough to make a list of the characteristics I felt I had encountered. I wrote about deception, hypocrisy, confusion, secrecy, unfairness, and unpleasantness. When I looked at my list, I felt indignant . . . and resentful.

Next, I looked up each hurtful experience in my synonym dictionary and found opposites to each one. Here's what I came up with:


My list became a blueprint for the qualities I wanted my relationships to have, and every one of my relationships has now fallen into line with my blueprint. How did I do it? With the Dictionary Game that we're going to play right now.

The Dictionary Game* enables you focus long enough on your wishes . . . so that they can manifest. With enough focus, the feelings behind your wishes become activated . . . or animated. When your feelings are animated, they are able to attract other feelings just like them . . . until they form a mass. When a mass is formed . . . it becomes visible in our physical world. That's the goal of all mind-body-spirit work . . . to make your feelings, your wishes, and your desires visible . . . and the Dictionary Game allows you to accomplish it.

To play the Dictionary Game right now, just read along with me:

Forthright: free from ambiguity or evasiveness; going straight to the point; without hesitation; at once; frankly

Honest: free from fraud or deception; truthful; genuine; real; marked by free, forthright, and sincere expression

Open: completely free from concealment; exposed to general view or knowledge; having clarity and resonance unimpaired by undue tension or constriction of the throat; willing to hear and consider or to accept and deal with; free from reserve or pretense

Straightforward: clear-cut; precise; candid; direct

Candid: free from bias, prejudice, or malice; indicating or suggesting sincere honesty and absence of deception

Pleasant: having qualities that tend to give pleasure; agreeable

Genuine: actually having the reputed or apparent qualities or character; sincerely and honestly felt or experienced; free from hypocrisy or pretense

Sincere: free from adulteration; pure

Heartfelt: deeply and strongly felt

Do you feel relieved? Uplifted? Safe? That's your Dictionary Game at work, turning resentment into a desire-booster that will bring wonderful, new relationship experiences your way. It's a new answer for old hurts.

Written by:
Mary Anne Thomas
Author of "An Adventure of the Mind"
(c) Copyright 2000, Mary Anne Thomas. All rights reserved. *The Dictionary Game is an important new spiritual tool that enables you to hold your focus long enough for your wishes to manifest. It's the tool spiritual students have been struggling to find, that provides the missing link in spiritual work. The Dictionary Game is featured in Mindzine, an e-magazine devoted to the power of words to develop the spiritual mind. To subscribe to Mindzine, (leave the subject line blank and type the word "subscribe" in the body of the message).

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