Saturday, September 19, 2015

Would you like fresh pepper on your froth?

Stick with me - this will all make sense. Maybe. 

I have generalized anxiety disorder. Of course putting that right there is a violation of my privacy rights, but since I did it to myself, I guess it's okay this one time. My anxiety is not the point of today's batch of useless writing, but is the background for what's coming next; because an even bigger mistake is taking place right now than my own self-disclosure of protected medical history.

I am actively avoiding any and all viewpoints which do not directly align with my own. EEP!

The other day I was scrolling through old things I wrote and a common theme has been emerging over the years in my public journaling, which you may or may not be reading. What do I care? I'm not the boss of you. Apparently I really dislike the manufactured drama, the constant spirals of anger and outrage, and if I type "self-righteous indignation" one more time (after this time) my keyboard might spontaneously explode. But there it is. All that froth is just extraordinarily distasteful to me.

And honestly I can't quite wrap my brain around those who LIKE froth.

Several years ago, my friend Matty T told me that he doesn't enter into debate with people if they are not open to changing their mind. Matty T has shown up in four previous entries (here, here, here and here) because he says shit that gets in my brain and takes up permanent residence. And that whole business of avoiding debates with someone who isn't willing to change their mind has simmered for years in my thoughts and has finally distilled into a kind of paradigm for my life. I can't argue anymore just for the sake of arguing.

It's not fun. Because I have anxiety.

Although I am open to changing my mind on a fair number of things (admittedly there are some closely held beliefs which are absolutely inviolable for me) I usually feel pretty solid in my formation of opinion. I like to read, I like to know things, and like to trust the foundation upon which I build my beliefs. So you can bet I'm relatively self-assured if I do enter a debate. But I'm almost always open to changing my mind or tweeking my philosophy if someones has better evidence, more compelling evidence, or a better reasoned argument.

It doesn't seem like I'm in the majority, though.

People's insta-rage is everywhere in every single thing they say or type or share. So I've tuned them out. I'm not allowing anything to make it through the gates if it doesn't align with my viewpoint. I am allowing no challenge. I wish the whole wide world would simmer down, take one giant step back and look all around the planet. The whole thing.

I wish people could understand on a level that reaches deep into their soul that we are all inextricably connected and that the left hand, which lives very far away from the right foot, does so much damage to the body when it hacks at the foot with a knife. The foot has different demands placed upon it; demands and living conditions that the hand can never understand. But to vilify the foot for its differences is cancerous to the body. The hand and foot don't need to be the same and, in fact, the body won't work correctly if they become the same.  The tongue and heart and thigh are all muscles. But you really wouldn't want them to be the exactly the same....and things would get pretty ugly in your daily life if they couldn't work together in concert with one another. The differences are vital to the proper functioning of the whole.

It's a parable for our families, for our neighborhoods, for our cities, states, countries and finally, our global family.

And until my global family understands that we function best because of our differences, then I'm afraid there aren't enough benzodiazepines in the world for me to continuously jump into the froth, fresh pepper or not.

Photo Credit: j-No via Compfight cc

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