Friday, December 30, 2005

Overheard continued

I enjoyed Cappa's refining my post with his comment on yesterday's post.

We take things to keep from feeling so that we can keep doing what we want no matter what sort of pain it generates.

It's an interesting way of avoiding change.

I think that's also reflected in the backlash against the left. There are problems. There would be problems if the left had any power in this country. However, we don't want to have to change and fix things. We like our lives and we don't want to have to work to change them and make them better. Instead of changing things to make things better for more people, we complain about those who bring it to our attention. This is rather like the young woman taking the pain pills. In her mind, the problem wasn't the what the pain signaled, but the pain itself. So get rid of the symptom (or mask it) and then the problem (potentially a pulled muscle, torn ligament, whatever) doesn't exist and so maybe it will really go away. Sadly, what happens is that the problem gets worse and then it's harder to fix.

Change is hard. Acting to encourage change is also hard. However, it's only be looking more closely at the symptoms of problems that we can fix them in a way to create peace. Avoiding them and ignoring them can only create anxiety.

Thursday, December 29, 2005

Overheard at the Ski area

I heard an interesting comment while in the restroom of the ski resort today. A woman was lacing her boots and saying, "I took a handfull of advil and I'm hoping that if I start hurting I won't feel it."

I think that's an apt statement about the state of our world. So many of us aren't out to prevent hurts and right wrongs, but merely deaden ourselves to the feelings of hurt.

We see this when we allow our government to cut funds earmarked for the elderly and for those going to school. We see this when people wait for days to be rescued from New Orleans. We see this any time anyone in our town cries for help, for food, for comfort and we see and go on with our lives rather than helping out. We don't have to save the world, but we have to recognize the pain of the world.

Deadening our feelings doesn't create peace. We simply become out of touch with what's going on and can't have any real empathy for anyone because we can't even feel our own feelings. We need to stop deadening our feelings. Only then can we come to a place of authenticity where we can create true peace in ourselves and our world.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

What is Support

There's a lot of talk about supporting our troops and our government. Supposedly, because the liberals don't always agree with the President, they are not supporting our government. When they speak out against the war, they are not supporting the troops.

To support someone means many things and it doesn't always require agreement. For instance, in a personal life, if I had a woman friend who was dating a man who was married. She's in love and she wants me to listen to her. I can do a couple of things. I can listen and say she's doing the right thing and that he'll probably leave his wife and it's wonderful. I can listen and say, ya know, this worries me. Here are the things that bother me about this situation. It's your life and you need to do what you have to do and I'm here but I can't just sit back and not say that I see problems with what you are choosing right now. I can also say: HELLO! What! I don't agree with that. Change what you are doing and do it my way or else.

Depending upon the sort of person we are, we could take any of the above behaviors as supportive behavior. One agrees with whatever the person does. One tells them what to do and gives out ultimatums and another offers support for the person, if not the action.

As children we all have imprints and dreams of what true support is about. We bring these ideas whenever we think of support. However each person gives support in their unique ways. I have outlined three major ways in which someone might offer support.

I think that people have tended to forget that there are many ways to be supportive. Many think that saying we shouldn't be at war means we don't support the troops, but that's not true. We may not support the decision that sent those men and women overseas, but we can still support them. As in the analogy above, we can support people in many different ways. This is true of our government. We can offer our opinions and criticisms and work for those things that we think need to be improved but criticising doesn't mean we don't support it.

Support. It's a big word and it isn't a synonym for agreement.