Friday, November 5, 2010

Rebuilding the Foundation of Our Lives...

Folks for some this is going to be very elementary to you. Nothing I’m going to say is gonna make you ponder or reflect because I bet most of you who read my blog will already be in tuned to what I’m going to say.

I had an interesting conversation with a friend and this friend has in essence rejected me in so many words because I don’t share their “so-called” values.
I’ll freely admit I was taken by surprise but when it comes to people of color this is the reality of black folks like me face. Stand on our principals and beliefs and be rejected by those to with whom we share the same skin pigmentation or choose to be ignorant to the realities around us and be accepted.

From the time we are little we are taught that everyone is different. We all have our own views and opinions on religion, morality, society and each have our own unique outlook on life and what is our priority.

To me, this diversity gives our communities a rich texture of different cultures, music, art and opinions and makes the modern society vibrant and exciting. However, I am also keen to ensure that my way of life is not undermined by different lifestyles or points of view, and that I retain my undeniable right to live my life the way that I choose, think the way I choose even if this means being rejected for those said views.

This undeniable right is key, and we should never judge or act negatively just because someone exercises their right to follow a different lifestyle or life choice from ours. Unfortunately this does happen, and often leads to divergence, persecution, conflict and in worse case scenarios war. Possibly worse is our selfish ability to ignore "difference" completely.

It is a facet of human nature to be protective. We like to feel that we have a secure and protected way of life that follows the guidelines that we set down. Perversely, we also try to expound the image of welcoming difference and minorities in a sense of "oneness", but only do this for as long as it does not affect us personally. This strong requirement to "self protect" is the first reason why some remain ignorant about societal and philosophical differences.

Fundamentally, we fear change, and fear difference. Our modern lives are all about our own goals, and the plethora of modern personality weaknesses is what drives this.

We ignore the "difference" in the world because we tend to be selfish, intolerant and inflexible in our pursuit of our own objectives and, whilst ambition and progress are to be applauded, they should not be at the expense of other people and certainly not through the persecution or ignorance of people just because they choose a different ideological path.

I have very strong opinions, but I have never chosen to dismiss someone because their views or ideological beliefs differing from mine.

I think most of you know most of what I rant about here is more tongue in cheek. Yes I rail about the societal ills of liberalism and I use some harsh language in my rhetoric. But I am hardly intolerant or dismissive of someone because of their thought process or personal beliefs.

What I do have a problem with is when I am rejected for my beliefs and the person rejecting me have no core beliefs to fall back on only that my beliefs are “uncomfortable” and does not fit their paradigm and what is even more disturbing is that paradigm is formed out of ignorance of the world and the reality around them not simply based on philosophical differences.
This is why I have so many issues with black folks and this just did not start recently I’ve had these issues going back to when I was a small child.

One question to ponder; is it "chosen" ignorance or a lack of knowledge, that which plagues humanity the most? Some "choose" to be ignorant in their actions and some just lack the knowledge to enable themselves more power. Both are hurting themselves, but the one who chooses ignorance is actually damaging themselves more than those who are without knowledge.

Choosing to be ignorant simply means that you stop yourself from learning and nothing more. You have already made up your mind, reinforced with your faith and belief, so as to ignore new knowledge from being learned.

I was watching an old episode of Six Feet Under and the episode had to do with Ruth going to this self-help group and they talked about redoing your blueprint for life.

When we are damaged (and that includes me) we keep adding rooms to an already damaged structure. You don’t continue to build on a house that is frankly fucked up, one with crumbling walls, a poor foundation or rotting floors.
If someone were to purchase such a home they immediately start to tear the home down to the foundation and start over.
I learned after my second divorce that I made so public here I needed to in essence fundamentally tear down my home because if I did not any relationship I would enter into the future would be doomed to failure because I did not repair the damaged structure.

Far too many of us make decisions or choices, solely based on old knowledge and past experiences, without imagination or fore-sight. This limited scope for awareness is limited by our own ego; yet do not see it for what it is truly. A problem.

This can apply to relationships or even politics for which this blog is dedicated to.
I am unable to comprehend why some black folks continue down the same path voting for people that don’t have their best interest at heart and the proof is obvious. This is not my opinion this is fact.
If you dare take a stroll into any black neighborhood, find a Martin Luther King Boulevard and see the destruction, the hopelessness and despair the rotting of the soul has indeed taken over but unfortunately some black folks are either clueless to the destruction because they live it everyday or maybe they simple feel that they have no way out.

How would you like to be "X"ed out, because you choose to be ignorant? Would you like your life to end abruptly, because you choose to not learn anymore, feel anymore, care anymore? Would you like for your family to struggle, having to deal with your ineptitude?
You would ask the same of politicians who fail their communities, come up with a program to automatically X out those who serve their community and fail their constituents, mandatory benchmarks for performance.

Think for a few seconds. Have you been told something that you learned to be not true? It slams into your ego, like a freight train rams into a parked car on the tracks waiting to get slammed. All of sudden, something you have learned about is no longer true and you have to accept it. You must bend with change; otherwise you are left out in the cold to suffer, while people pity you.

The simple facts of life really boil down to only a few basic human characteristics that must be keep in check at all times. Your actions should be honest and not harmful to anyone. You should remain responsible about being honest with yourself and others. You should know that you are connected in life to those who are living around you. You are connected, because you are around them and your actions affect/effect them, as well their actions have an impact on your life.
For much of my life I ignored this fact because of outright selfishness and stubbornness, but I will tell you folks it is amazing when you find yourself alone and in this never ending reflective mood constantly at war with yourself over things your should have said or done lamenting the mistakes of the past.

The beauty of life is that we can control what we do. We can, on an individual basis, prevent other people from manipulating others by standing by the person who is being manipulated. We can show them the truth no matter how painful that truth is and let them decide from themselves.

It requires a person to always keep an open mind, to the possibilities, that there are factors that they are not aware of or do not see. Many people think "choice" is an illusion, as is "control". What many people fail to realize is that there is nothing stronger than the human will or it's mind.
Over the past year as I am about to turn 47 tomorrow that I have been in a constant battle with the mind.

At what point do we realize that we are in control of our actions and our destiny? When do we realize our life IS ours to do with as we choose?
When do we redraw those blueprints for our lives and start rebuilding our homes with that new foundation or are we simply adding on to that damaged structure based on our old habits or beliefs knowing damn well that what we know up until that point has not worked.
How much are we willing to let slip by because of our egos? Who ends up getting hurt because we are unable or refuse to change?

I wish I was able to follow my own advice years ago and not wait until I am reflecting on the mistakes I made on beating myself up over those I hurt.
Look at what I lost so many good things and good people and good memories.
If you look at it in a societal way and looking at how today’s politicians’ particularly leftist liberal Democrat politicians seek to keep people ignorant, helpless, dependent, enabling and therefore suffering.

If you remember something I wrote some time ago I referred to “mental shackles” and unfortunately far too many of us choose to keep them on us even though they possess the key and can remove them at any time.

I remember reading a long time ago and many of you are much smarter than I may identify the experiment and are familiar with this premise.
Experiments have been done with lab rats, placing them in a cage with an electric grid on the bottom. At random intervals, the rat's feet get a mild shock, similar to a shock of static electricity we get from touching a door handle after walking over a plush carpet. The rat freaks out over this and tries to escape, but it is trapped in the cage. After repeated attempts, the rat gives up. No matter how much the experimenter continues to shock it, the rat will just lie there and take it. Even if the door to the cage is opened and the rat can clearly see it can now escape, it will stay and be shocked. It has learned to be helpless and will no longer try to be free, even when it can easily and obviously do so. When the experimenter then kills the rat and does a chemical analysis of its brain, he discovers the dramatic depletion of noradrenalin. The animal's brain has 'learned' not to produce more noradrenalin, and thus has “learned” to be helpless.

Another experiment had to do with restraining a baby elephant. Circus trainers chain it to a huge stake driven into the ground. When the baby grows into an adult, however, it is many times smarter and stronger. What trainers must then drive into the ground is just a tiny tent peg.

The baby had tried everything to break free. It had strained with all its might, pulling in every conceivable way, hour after hour, day after day. The huge stake refused to budge. So, rather than mindlessly keep trying to do the impossible, it did what at the time was the intelligent thing: it gave up trying.

The baby grew into a powerful beast. Convinced by bitter experience that whenever it is tethered there is no point trying to resist, it never bothered to determine whether anything had changed. So it suffers indignities, even though, if only it could grasp the fact, it could easily rip up the peg and trample those who sought to dominate it.

As an adult, it finds itself bound not by a stake but by a powerful psychological force. This powerful force has been given several names, one of which is “Learned Helplessness.” It has been the subject of much research by psychologists because, in one form or another, it binds millions of people. It is a factor sometimes the full reason in the peculiar tendency of many of us to be plagued by what seems to be bad luck, year after year.

Is this the perpetual state for many of us in our lives, is this the state of black America and why so many people of color play the victim mentality which is also why black individuals like myself are rejected as I stated in the beginning of this piece because my particular way of thinking is inconceivable to them.

I don’t have the answer here folks I’m just venting, in one of my contemplative moods assessing my life and where I am up to this point.

Folks at the end of many of these thoughtful rants I say over and over choose not to be ignorant, be thankful and appreciative for what you have, don’t take life or those you love and those who love you… a kiss or a hug for granted.
I don’t know how much longer I have on this earth but I sincerely hope I am able to and not be ignorant to my own advice.
But if you have not done so for God sakes take control of your life because God gave us free will to do just that.

Peace Gaius


litterbox said...

This is something I want to re-read every morning for the rest of my life. Every word rings so true. Thank you for this thoughtful rant.

namaste said...

Happy Birthday, Gaius!

i hear you on this rant. some people can be frustrating to deal with.

but i disagree with you on one thing. i feel no allegiance to stand by people who let themselves be manipulated. i care nothing about them. that is not my fight here on earth. i stand by Americans who love their country. this kind of loyalty has yielded the BEST returns.

chin up, friend. pay attention to the good stuff. stupid people can be draining. try not to focus on them so much. enjoy your day tomorrow!


Anonymous said...

Brilliant and thoughtful.

Happy Birthday!

Anonymous said...

Happy 47th. Hope you have a great day/year. And hope that those reading your words understand the importance of being honest & appreciating the good things they have in their life.

PeggyU said...

Hm? I tried to leave a birthday message, but it didn't take. I hope it was a good one!!!

Gaius Lawrenitis Negris said...

Thank you all for the birthday wishes. I had a great birthday and feel better than I have in quite some time.

Peace Gaius