Let's just eliminate all the bullshit, shall we?







Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Battle to be 'Right'

When I was brought up, my Southern Baptist grandmother taught
that to show devotion to God was done through governing self. That one
had a task set before them; to do the best they could to maintain the ideals
of (her teacher) Jesus. In the nurturing comfort of Nana Grace's presence,
it always seemed such a simple concept. Going forth into the world, I've
learned it is hardly the case.

Whether it's politics, religion, spirituality, sexuality, or any other lifestyle
matter under the sun, there seems to be preoccupation with dominance.
When did we become so obsessed with being thought right? When did
there stop being a place at the table for all comers?

I never did understand the reactionary nature of certain groups. Those
who make a job out of telling others how they are wrong--empirically
and undeniably INCORRECT--for not believing as they do.  I always
sort of chalked it up to insecurity. But it's everywhere now. And I find
myself guilty of the same adamence, getting caught up in the fervor of this
'life-or-death' insistence that there is only one way to think, feel, act,
or speak.

People want the Pledge of Allegiance made mandatory. They want to
control enforcing not only that it gets said at every school and every public
event, but that every person must stand up, cross heart, and speak the
pledge! That blows my mind! What part of someone's brain thinks that
dedication to a country ostensibly made great by its freedoms should
regulate a specific belief system ?!?

Religious people continue to get involved in political movements, protests,
school boards, and other social agendas. Having an opinion is fine; here's
the rub. We have a whole section of society that expects to get things reshaped
in the way they want them.
*If you oppose them, you're immoral.
*If they don't 'win', they're being persecuted.
*If you don't defer to their thinking, something is wrong with yours.

I never knew about the biblical passages on passing legislation and
making the world into a perfect representation of our desires.

How is that even possible? There are so many different, contradictory
point of view, how on earth would it be possible to get everyone on
the same page?

For me, it comes down to personal responsibility. If I am taking charge
of myself, then I am doing fine. It isn't my job to control, change, condemn,
criticize, or confront someone else. I don't keep true to that understanding
100%, but when I do, everything is so much smoother.

Control is an illusion anyway. We can't control what happens on this
planet! I understand the desire to want to...the world is a scary, lonely,
unpredictable place. When we put the illusion of constraints and labels
and rules and regiments in place, we feel less threatened. But real life
is change and diversity and openness. Learning acceptance and being
okay with the way things are. If we are constantly dissatisfied with the
world outside of us as it presents itself, where does our need to control
end?

As we become truly secure with our own beliefs, maturing and loving
ourselves, I think the idea of worrying about what others do lessens.
A lot of it may be learned behavior; intolerance of parents or churches
or other upbringing being channeled. But it's a dangerous course. If
we all are unalterably right, then that intimates that others are inherently
wrong, and that just sets up the day for conflict.

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