I remember as a child, hearing an adult in my family making the statement that a certain person was, "A Bad Seed". That definitely was not a compliment! I didn't exactly know what that meant, but suspected that they were referring to the other as a, "bad person". They may not have realized or accepted that they themselves may have some, "bad seeds in them". The Buddhist orientation toward individuals, is that each of us has a variety of seeds in us. We have the seed of compassion, love, kindness, faithfulness, commitment, and we have the seeds of anger, hatred, betray, and dishonesty. We have the potential for any of these attributes and many more to be expressed. We can selectively encourage these potentials to be expressed or to not be expressed. In the Buddhist philosophy they might refer to this as, "Selective Watering". We can selectively water certain seeds within ourselves, and we can selectively water certain seeds in others. If our partner is frequently angry or depressed, we may want to notice if we are watering the seeds of anger and depression in them.. This concept can be invaluable in intimate relationships. Thich Nhat Hanh suggest that we tell our partners that we have both positive and negative seeds within us, and promise that we will selectively water the positive seeds, and ask our partner if they will help by watering the positive seeds in us, and not water the negative ones. We can commit to doing the same for them. So how much responsibility can we accept for ourselves? How much responsibility can we accept for the other's emotions, behavior and actions? I no longer believe that we are, "completely", responsible for our actions, and our sense of well being, and yet we can't blame others for our poor behavior, and our poor actions. We contribute to each other's sense of well being, and we contribute to each other's misery. We contribute to our own success, and we contribute to our own failure. Others contribute to our success, and they also can also contribute to our failure. We are interconnected to everything, and each part is having an impact on the other. Just like the the seemingly bad person, maybe things aren't really so, "black and white". For myself I like to accept responsibility for my own thinking, my own behavior, and my own actions. I believe this is a healthy orientation. I will encourage my client's to accept responsibility for themselves as well. I can choose to make efforts to water the positive potential within myself, as well as those around me, and yet others can still have an impact, regarding certain aspects of myself, and my well being. Like the "Bad Seed", things may not be so, "black and white". Thank you for reading.