Repost – The Price of Being Right…But first an Announcement

Shameless self promotion time! My new book is available on Amazon.com. I’ve been so busy getting it ready that I didn’t take time to polish a blog for today. Next week I will be ready!

The Price of Being Right

When I think about my beliefs on how society functions and what I would like our world to look like, I get this wish to make it happen. Visionaries in our society have often been glorified and sometimes rightfully so. I think of Martin Luther and Mother Teresa, who have freed many from the bondage of religious beliefs. There is a balancing act. Churches exist to help the needy. To give strength to the weak. To feed the poor. Somewhere in the process they become the cripplers, the takers, and the tyrants.

I was speculating recently about my perfect society. The one where we all live together in harmony. The one where goods are shared, and all are fed. All are honored. Can’t we all just get along?

Mother-Teresa-collage

I was curious about my hopes for society, how they compared to earlier beliefs and social systems. Marxism was one that stood out to me. And that is disappointing to me since the results were nowhere near what I had dreamed. The dreamer in me, that blonde-haired idealist, wants peace, but so much more. I want children to grow up strong and whole. I want parents to have what they need to raise those children. I want teachers to have tools to teach and children to have the access to learning. I love growth.

 

It’s not peace I want, not mere contentment. It’s boundless joy and ecstasy for me. -Kugell

Before we all start singing ‘round the campfire and holding hands, fan away the smoke from your eyes. Here is my issue. Yes, I want these things. What I don’t want is another Stalin or Jim Jones. So for a reality check, I have to take a step back. What makes a monster like Hitler? What causes a leader to brainwash his followers? They are RIGHT! They have The Truth.

Leaders take note. If you are headstrong and charismatic, people will follow, regardless of any truth or you even having the people’s best interest in mind. I find this sad. There are many helpful people in our world. These helpful folks don’t have the charisma that David Koresh had. Therefore, people aren’t listening en masse. Does this devalue their truth? No. I think our issue is more that we want a Messiah. We need our white horse riding, strong-armed warrior. We want and crave a leader who is elegant and fierce. And why?

Why do we crave a hero? For the same reason social systems such as Marxism swerve away from their origin. Social Equality is a great idea. There are those who could work with each other and make a village style society work. On the other side of that argument, people are afraid without guidance. Not everyone has grown up. Many still believe that we need a church or a government instructing us, or else we would end up in chaos and violence. Possibly, they are right.

So my point is, I don’t wish to push my ideal society or my ideal lifestyle on anyone. The price of being right is tyranny. It’s Jim Jones and his mass suicides. The truth is never forceful. Love is kind and patient. It doesn’t need to use charismatic persuasion to make you believe. And it refuses to allow others to follow blindly.

If there is no savior what will we do? The end of the world didn’t come. The pot of gold was not where we thought it should be. Now we stumble along until enough people wake up. When enough wake up and realize that maybe it’s time we take care of ourselves, then it’s possible we can discuss this around the table. Then we can treat each other with the respect we all deserve. We are all equals. No one man or one government is RIGHT. Not even ourselves. It’s very tempting to believe that an angel on high gave us the answers, but what made us so special? Isn’t that the beginning of madness? My next question would be, why do I need to feel that special?

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Irrational Fears and Faded Memories

English: reflection of a camera shot in christ...
English: reflection of a camera shot in christmas baubles (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve been wavering about pushing myself or not.  I do push a bit. Maybe a little more than I should. I want to get things done. I don’t want to put any of my shiny baubles (my projects) down. Like the monkey in the story of how to catch a monkey fame, I have my hands full. And I want it all.

But I’m uncertain. Afraid to push myself. Afraid of getting a migraine. Of wearing myself out. I really don’t know what I’m truly capable of. Not yet at least.

Cue theme song

For a long time I tried to psychoanalyze myself, to cure my pain. Somehow I believed that the migraines were either subconscious or even a conscious way of avoiding trying. As if I didn’t want to succeed and was sabotaging my own efforts. With that theory, my mind reverts to a familiar memory. It’s like a theme song in the back of my life.

When I was in junior high, I was the first in line for our fitness test.  This was my first year in junior high and my first year to do any type of fitness testing. I was fairly athletic but tiny. We did our 1 mile jog around the gym. There was the jumps, long and short. A pegboard climb and the chin up. We lined up in alphabetical order. My last name started with a B in those days used to going first, so this was no big deal. The chin up bar was in front of me. It glared I’m sure. Taunting. The chin up was easy. Hanging not so bad. Continuing to hang for an extended length of time was boring. I felt awkward. People were staring, waiting, and eager to get to their turn. Impatient. And I felt the eyes of everyone on me. So I dropped.

Seth Godin mentions something about favorite memories in a recent blog. http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2013/01/a-legend-in-my-own-mind.html 

“Everyone lives with self mythology. The more important a memory is to the story we tell ourselves about ourselves, the more often we rehearse the memory. And the more often we relive those memories, the less likely it is that they are true.”

This made we wonder about my vivid memory. How true is my belief and interpretation? I’m not trying. I give up. Am I really not trying? Is it because of fear or is there another reason? So I dig a bit deeper.

What if I stumble? What if I fall?

What if I try my very hardest and it’s not enough? What if I found the man of my dreams and I screw it up? I know this is a stupid question. I know it’s an irrational fear. I recognize it for what it is, but I also know that it’s there jeering at me. I hear the whispers it breathes. Yep, but I know it’s a lie. It’s a fictional story made up by the drama team to make a story more..DRAMATIC! It gives the story some punch. It’s like the music in the background of a scary show. It isn’t the truth, but it does color the truth brighter. How do I know this? Because no one succeeds the first time they step out in new territory. Not Lewis and Clark, not Abraham Lincoln, not Hillary Clinton, and not you and me. The first time is for measurement only. There is no line drawn in the sand when you begin. You can’t do better because you’ve never tried before.

Red Chihuahua poses for a photo, white chest f...
Red Chihuahua poses for a photo, white chest flash, male, with a pink wall, in La Purisima / San Isidro, West Coastal, Baja California Sur, Mexico (Photo credit: Wonderlane)

Going back to the memory that I replay over and over. When I believed the story I told myself (I don’t try hard enough), I felt I should have tried to hold the chin up a lot longer. I could have beaten all of their times, maybe. But I had no standard of how long I could hold it. No idea if I could do 10 minutes or 5. How could I? I had never timed myself. I was still a kid and didn’t have experience to know what is in me or what I should expect of me. That’s what the teenage years do for us. They help us see where our strengths and weaknesses are. And then we can work through them. Up until that time, you have no expectations of yourself. Or at least very few.

Thinking thinking always thinking

I realize that I think too much. I read too much into a symptom or an illness. Migraines just are. People get sick. We live and we die. It’s really all pretty simple. Until it gets complicated. And only we can complicate it. We put in our fears and expectations when life is really just about living and dying. In between we put in all the Shoulds and Musts until we have our own list of complicated Ten Commandments. Mine at times is like reading Leviticus in the Bible, The King James Version.

You are here X

So the first step I take doesn’t count. And if it counts, it only counts as a  measuring point. Each effort after that is to hone the process. Only after having a  starting point can you have any idea of where you are.

Third Eye Blind – Jumper

Here is a funny scene from Yes Man – Jumper Scene singing Jumper