"Every thought you produce, anything you say, any action you do, it bears your signature."~Thich Nhat Hanh
Bear with me, I do not know where I am going with this; but I am going...
I receive an email this morning from someone who raised in very apt question that I believed deserved an answer and I gave her one. It got me to thinking about something.
Over the last several weeks I have had different friends exclaim "What has happened to us, how did we get like this"? in reference to a new or yet another tragedy, another absurdity, another program or "news" report. The crassness & coarseness that has been crammed down our collective psyche with increased intensity and volume has unconsciously allowed us to think or treat one another with more suspicion, cynicism and suspicion whether we want to admit it or not. The lowest common denominator has shifted us culturally in ways that may be subtle, others not so subtly.
What we don't get in such shifting & the Olympian rush to judgement, criticize or assumptions is a complete true behind the scene what lead case A to its conclusion , we just rush headlong into condemning, criticizing or indicting something or someone without all the facts as if we now care for all the facts.
And sometime truth is stranger then fiction; at the end of it even if we cared enough to really know , what would it changed?
I just know that it has altered a cultural consciousness to a new low. From the early days of the 'inquiring minds want to know" to the sleaze of a Povich circus to outright in your face Springer tacky orgy of the lowest common denominator passing for entertainment or a host of "news" programming that mad gossip & slander way too eager to entertain us the underbelly of very surreal human drama.
Even as I am writing this NBC just announced that Mr. Ted, the man with the Golden Voice" has checked himself out of rehab after a very public "help" by Dr. Phil to aid him into working on his addictions. I like many others truly wanted the best for him; I still want the best for him. As many of us know who may have had family members with addiction problems, it is not an smooth easy road to rehabilitation; there is no walk off into the sunset hand in hand end for this.
But I do not know if I could handle such a public detailed scrutiny into my life; could any of us?
But my point is somewhere the collective ball has been dropped and we are not too far off from being like the days of ancient Rome where far too overly privilege folks bored out of their collective skulls, looking for the next high, the next stimulus because of boredom, deflection or whatever get entertain by watching Christians torn apart by lions for their "enjoyment".
We are like a locomotive going down hill with no breaks.
And I think we know it & either unwilling or unable to stop it; we're getting something out of it.
And it is hard, increasingly hard now to either have or gain integrity because you are not going to be believed or mocked or looked upon with suspicion understandably so. in the last few days an acquaintance of mine lost her sister in death who had the same health issue I had. It gave me the chills because that could have been me. No one could believe as it was "just a hernia". The" just a" on anything worried me
As I told her as we converse, that I had many who did not believe me either because it was "just a". Even family members, friends, acquaintance or total strangers did not. They thought I was trying to excuse away what they thought was my getting fat not that there was a real health issue going on and as I got sicker & sicker, less & less mobile, less & less able to work, that I was just making things up, I was looking for attention, I was just lazy you name it I heard it.
Fortunately for me not everyone had been bitten with the cynical bug; if they had I might now be here today to even write this. And I thank God for that as I may have ran screaming into the woods or not here to scream into the woods.
As I now try to put this figurative Humpty-Dumpty back together again knowing it will take time, effort and a lot of work; harder still is to know that I can restore myself in a larger way.
One thing for sure I know is one cannot argue with a belief; people do not like being wrong and will hold onto something no matter what evidence there will be to the contrary because of not wanting to be wrong or saving face. But that is a whole other issue & doesn't have anything to do with me. That is their responsibility if they want to.
There have been people who made one error or even several errors turned away from them, did extraordinary lives and all it takes is some young eager beaver reporter trying to gain brownie points or make a name for themselves, to dreg back as far back in the past to Christopher Columbus to find something, anything to shade a negative life on someone.
How many of us could stand up to that scrutiny without collapse?
I am quite sure most of us by now either saw or heard about the discovery of Oprah Winfrey's sister. I thought it was very smart for her to tell her story before all the "just a's" broke out. In fact within minutes of the show closing I got not one, two but three "news alerts" & speculations from news sources. We are talking about minutes & of course it wasn't very nice. Of course it is nothing but family business & let family take care of family business. And yes she is a very well known figure so there will be interest, but I applaud that she took to break the story herself before the "just a's" began.
Make sure to know that when I wrote about people's redemption's that I was not speaking of major crimes against nature as in an Idi Amin or Papa Doc Duvalier of Haiti or an Adolf Hitler-like horror perpetuated on mankind, but more of the garden variety human error. And even in that garden if a person is not remorseful if they have not made any effort at correcting what they are able to do, well how one hold them accountable is up to that individual. But still again I say without knowing all the mitigating circumstances that we may not be aware of.
Even wise King Solomon once said " Oppression can make even the wise one act stupid". Those circumstances that we are not aware of, may indeed make a person make a decision that was not write but caught up in the oppression or circumstances they made a poor choice.
So at the end of the day what would you do? What would I do?
Part of where I am in my life is maintaining peace in myself and in my small corner of the world. Not unlike many others I have had more then my fair share of wrongs & injustices done to me where I am still paying for these people's actions or decisions. They gone on with their lives blithely unconcern or unaware of what they left in their wake, while I am gasping for air and trying to stand up, to right myself because of their actions.
What it has taught me is as the Sankofa proverb states "There is no shame to go back & correct what not done"... I just feel like we have lost something collectively or maybe we never had it but pretended that we did. I just know right now what I can perhaps do is make peace with what I can & be what I can be right now, the best I can be right now...
Holding on hoping for those others to right it with me is an exercise in futility. I don't know, perhaps they are like me in the sense they are trying to adjust themselves, correct themselves, right themselves, I don't know & right now it isn't my business to know.
So again I didn't know where I was going with this; I am truly writing out of my head & my heart. The answer is there right below the surface & I await it breaking through & then I will know.
"Small minds talk about people;average minds talk about events; Great mind talks about ideas"~Unknown.