Hedgehog Reflection

The Hedgehog   (Listen while you read) 


Day’s end. Can’t wait for day’s end.


Giving up, dear one?

Are you going to give up on living a life that suits you?

It doesn’t have to suit any other person, dear heart; this is true. As long as it suits you.

Think upon this and see if what you want to do, and what others want for you to do is one and the same. Then think upon the matter of:

Whose life are you living?

Sometimes we do this. Don’t we? We live the life that others want us to live, which is not necessarily what we may want to do.

And why do we do this?

Sometimes we do this because we fear not doing this. Sometimes we may feel obligated.

And what does obligation lead to?

I’ll tell you, dear friend. Obligation leads to a life that we do not necessarily enjoy. It is that simple. Obligation can sometimes be a road to dismay. Indeed this can be true.

And why do we feel obligated?

Sometimes we can feel obligated when someone does us ‘a good turn’, so to speak. Indeed, when someone does us a good turn, we feel obligated.

And what is a ‘good turn’?

It can be as simple as giving us birth, or it can be as complicated as allowing us to use their material possessions. Indeed, it can be great or small.

Obligation is a ‘double edged sword’ that can lead to dismay.

And so, what can we do when we feel obligated?

We can think upon this to ensure that it doesn’t prove a double edged sword. We can investigate our feelings to ensure that we are not placing ourselves into a position which shall cause us dismay. For, if we do, are we not doing ourselves an injustice?

Yes, or no?

This is the question that we must pose to ourselves whenever we feel an obligation.

Carolyn Page  –  ABC of Spirit Talk

Image Credit: Zorandim/Shutterstock.com


  1. Carolyn, there is much to think about when it comes to obligation, and the possible road to dismay is very true. I have found a sense of obligation in blogging. When people are kind enough to stop by my blog and leave a comment, I feel obligated to visit and comment at their blog as well. I finally managed to get a handle on that feeling. Now, I simply visit as many blogs as I can when I have time to read blogs. I will eventually get around to everyone I enjoy. I no longer feel guilty or obligated.

    1. Yes indeed, Maddie; me too…
      There is certainly a ‘mutual reciprocation’ associated with blogging (indeed within any form of unity) which enhances the comradery and mutual satisfaction of having and participating within a social context. However, there is a definite difference between mutual reciprocation, and an obligation. One is joyful and a pleasure, the other can be drudgery with a lack of self-fulfillment….
      ‘Time’, or lack thereof, is the thief of pleasure… Oh, how I wish I had more… I believe those who are ‘on our wave length’ don’t mind our lack; they too experience that same thief… 🙂

    1. Absolutely, Rebecca… There’s nothing like that feeling of knowing you have received something from a free heart. When I receive in this way I ‘want’ to give in return… No obligation, but because of the wonderful sense of being acknowledged or validated or just liked for no reason other than the giver has had the capacity to do this. A wonderful comment… 🙂

  2. You are bang on with the obligation thing, Carolyn. We have to check it all the time…at least I do when it comes to my family. I’m always having to check in on my feelings, because I made a pact with myself long ago to be honest with myself and live freely. It creeps up behind me and bites me on the bum sometimes, but I keep it in check generally!

    1. Yep, Yaz, it can do that; and doesn’t it hurt when it does…!?!
      I believe that ‘age’ has helped me an awful lot; you know, time and experience is invaluable where this type of thing is concerned.
      You know what they say: “If you hit that brick wall often enough, you’ll either learn the lesson, or your brain will turn to mush…!” 😉

  3. Years ago a hedgehog crossed my path and I had to nurture him, because he was almost frozen to death. It was in a time that I had the feeling I was lived by others. The words of hedgehog are almost the same what I felt, when I took care of him. .Btw he still comes back every year, with a girlfriend to mate in the garden, probably to remind me that there are no obligations 🙂

    1. That’s fascinating; Thank You for telling me…!
      The reflections, although hopefully entertaining are given to me as especially true reflections for those of us who come in contact with the subjects, or are attracted to them in some way. It gladdens my little heart to hear of your ‘first hand experience’. And, what an experience; so special..! And to think he returns every year with a girlfriend… I’m smiling from ear to ear… 😀 I’m also a little envious. What gorgeous little creatures… 🙂

  4. Deep, and very thought provoking! Just in time for my needed pondering, I have to listen and relisten, and will keep relistening to your recording, Carol, for the answers that are just and sane. Again, thank you for your continued inspiration and insights! Keep shining, Ms. Page!

  5. I hate feeling obligated!!
    So I’ve minimised the opportunities for feeling obligated towards anybody by just not asking anybody for anything 😉

    1. I appreciate absolutely what you say, Ghia… Though it is the extreme there are some who, unfortunately, use such conditions to exert power over another. Naturally, it is a sham, and it comes to no good. However, I too have been in such positions and am exceedingly pleased that, these days, I am quite self sufficient, rendering such abuses impotent…!
      Thank goodness the other side of that coin exists too…

  6. I think it was Carl Jung who said, “If you don’t write your own agenda for your life, the world will write it for you.”

    1. Indeed, Don… How true this is.
      I’ve always had a ‘soft spot’ for Jung. So much of his philosophy appealed to me as a younger woman, and today it still rings true. I have googled and found this quote –
      “If there is anything that we wish to change in the child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could better be changed in ourselves.”
      This is probably the greatest reason why I admire his ideas – they, in general, ask that we firstly look inward to find solutions…. Certainly a man after my own heart…!

  7. I think this is why so many of us feel stretched so thin these days – we don’t take the time to think through our obligations like you do here. Thanks for the great reminder!

    1. We can certainly do that – spread ourselves a little thin. When we take a good look, there are probably a number of things we can ‘let go’, which can make such a difference to our general outlook. Yes, the little hedgehog is a wonderful reminder…
      Thank You for visiting, and for your comment.. 🙂

  8. Great post Carolyn! I lived a life for many years that I felt others wanted me to live, one in which I felt obligated to everyone but me. It was so empowering to finally say ‘enough’ and find out who I was.

    1. Resa, I saw the little Hedgehog video on Sassy’s blog; what a cutie…! 🙂
      We bring those things (attract) into our world those things that (in some way) hold questions and/or answers for us. Self knowledge can be sooooo rewarding. Even though it may ‘sting’ a little; the result is always good if it leads to greater self awareness..
      xoxoxo 🙂

  9. It’s true, I felt obligated to come here, but only because I feel obligated to refresh and renew my spirit now and again by visiting my Favorite Font Of Inspiration and Wisdom. That would be you, dear Carolyn… : )

  10. sometimes it is not the obligation that drives us to fit in, it is guilt. You feel guilty that you are not what your parents want you to be. You are something that ashamed them.

    People love comfort, people love to be accepted and praised for fitting in. Everybody admires heroes, everybody admires revolutionaries and visionaries but a few choose to follow their own heart and dreams.

    Obligation goes hand in hand with guilt and fear of rejection.

    1. I would much prefer to be ‘respected’ than ‘liked’, Dace.
      Funny thing is; when I hold to my own truth I am generally both respected, and liked.
      Naturally, there will be those who will not respect or like, or ever be capable of doing so (for whatever personal beliefs they hold). However, regardless of their relation to me, I must be true to myself.

  11. Sometimes our gratefulness may bind us to do certain things..Of course, we may end up being unhappy..You are right. and a cutie, Hedgehog:) Hope you had a lovely Saturday, Carolyn

    1. Yes, Padmini, it’s a cutie; to be sure..!
      Thank You… Indeed I did have a wonderful Saturday. The concert was wonderful; Josh Groban was in fine voice, and the whole event was seamless…! xoxoxo 🙂

    1. Congratulations to you, Soumyav..
      I wasn’t aware of your second blog; I’ll need to ‘check it out’ more thoroughly when time permits… 😉
      Thank You for the nomination; I’m delighted…. 🙂

          1. thank you dear

            where do you get such beautiful inspiration
            it show the reflection of your heart
            it is simply amazing that you see
            beauty in simple things

          2. and I love that word of yours “” indeed “”””

            it is the way you speak, and your way of pronunciation

            OMG indeed

  12. Beautiful absolutely beautiful

    i love what you say very much and how you very very much

    I feel I love you my friend you are so amazing a soul, so patient, so soulful, so calm

    you are a wonder

      1. thank you

        only one request post a little bit more frequently

        and that too with your voice, to hear you is a blessing

  13. Hi Carolyn, I am obligated to you by my new spread sheet that I am using to navigate to my favorite blogs, since my reader doesn’t read my mind. That way I don’t lose track of the people I really like. My to do list obligates me in the same way. I don’t think obligation is entirely bad, but I’m not sure we can live in society without it. If we don’t do what our jobs obligate, pretty soon we won’t have them. If we don’t do what society obligates for us, we may have chaos. For example we are obligated to keep our tempers in tact, and when we get really mad, we are obligated to keep from killing someone. The people that do it anyway are obligated to serve time in prison.

    1. Marcia, I believe the little Hedgehog is speaking on a ‘personal’ scale, and not a societal one. I agree; without obligations, such as those you’ve mentioned society in general would indeed decline into anarchy (and we see this in many areas of the world). No, the little Hedgehog is referring to those moments in life when we feel a personal obligation which has been generated from a selfish desire or viewpoint of another, and not one which has our welfare at heart. This is coercion, at best; manipulation at worst…
      I am so pleased to be listed on your ‘spread sheet’.! What a great idea. I haven’t been inspired to post very much at all lately. Life has been leading me to the dance floor, of late. We are competing in a few comps over the next few months, and our teacher has given us new routines which are taking a lot of work to bed down… 😉

  14. Thanks, Carolyn, for the thought you share with us. Sometimes, we really do things for what people want us to do and forget what is the most important for ourselves. The time we have on earth is so precious, we have to seize it and to spend it wisely and not to prison ourselves behind bars. 😀

    1. Indeed, Cristina… If we truly ‘look after ourselves’, doing those things that are good and right, we shall surely do what is right for everything and everybody; for we will be working from a healthy state of mind…
      A lovely comment, Cristina…! 🙂

  15. Okay, obligations. Actually, I agree. Sometimes, its really difficult to be yourself, so tied up, tangled and in chains.
    That was one nice post.

  16. this is superb. exactly what i needed to hear at this moment. ‘as long as it suits YOU.’ – wonderful thought. i could read this everyday! 🙂

      1. hmmm told you i’d read it again. haha it’s really lovely. of all the reflections, i connected with this the most. i think i’ll draw strength from this. a reminder every time i feel haunted by obligations 🙂

    1. Oh Kim; my hope for you is to join the ranks of those ‘without remorse’…
      I appreciate what you say – we women have so many ‘inbred’ attitudes to overcome. One is the attitude that we must be everything to everybody… Uggg… It’s not true; it leads to dismay… 😉

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