Saturday, September 30, 2017

Doing It For Them Or For Us

Sadly enough, most of our lives are contingent on what we think other people think of us, rather than on improving what we already know about ourselves.  Our initial intent is to help others, but not long after having become doctors, lawyers, preachers, teachers, and other career minded individuals, our major focus becomes to do what others, especially those in authoritative positions, say is the right way to do what we do.

Let’s take educators for instance. We start off being dedicated to educating our students, by sharing with them all the knowledge, life lessons and wisdom we have attained. As time goes by however, and our admimistrators pressure us for better test scores and increased achievement results, we sucuumb to adhereing as best we can to the academic status quo. We already know that our salary and career advancement is greatly influenced by how well we conform to the standards that are in place, and we become so successful in suppressing and relinquishing our own ideas and intentions, that our conformity to the expectations of others becomes second nature.

It’s not just educators of course. It’s all of us who, subconsciously perhaps, support the selfish intententions of a society that was established by the few and is supported by the many. We have become so caught up in doing things in the way they’ve always been done, that we ignore the viable alternatives that may be more beneficial than the outdated concepts we have been trained to adhere to.

Having been continually indoctrinated with the notion that life is based on doing things either right or wrong, and that doing what we’ve been told to do is right, we forget that the righteousness that stems from loving one another is achieved through trial and error, and it supercedes both right and wrong. We’re going to make mistakes, which does not make us wrong if our intent is pure. We’re going to accomplish things as well, which does not make us right, but hopefully inspires ourselves and others to do even more.

There are two stories that may help to put things in perspective. The first is about the little girl who asked her mother and grandmother why they cut off the end of the pot roast before cooking it. They both said because it’s how her great grandmother did it and that it’s the right way for it to be done. Upon asking her great grandmother however, she found out that she did it because the roasting pan was too small.

The second story is about how all the animals watched as the tiny hummingbird flew down to the river to fill it’s little beak with water and flew back, time after time, to spit it on the raging jungle fire. When told by the huge elephants and hippos that she would never put the fire out she responded “Well I’d rather do something about it than just watch it burn. 

Let’s not just adhere to what we’re told is the right thing to do, let’s do all we can, while we can, until righteousness is the outcome.

I’ll holla…

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Sunday, September 17, 2017

INDIA...A Haven Of Tolerance And Acceptance

From my viewpoint, India is the most tolerant and accepting country on the planet. I first noticed this trait from a religious perspective, in that there are 1.3 billion people in this nation, comprised of Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, Muslims, and yes Catholics and Protestants. And from the way in which they interact with one another, unless you’re familiar with their particular style of clothing, you wouldn’t know what religion they professed until after having spoken with them about it.

My contention is that because of their dedication to the tenets of their particular religious practices, the common thread being to treat people as you would like to be treated, India is a place where tolerance and acceptance of others is common behavior.

My wife Nicole and are were there for over two weeks, and although it took us four days to verbally interact with others on a personal level, once we started communicating however, it became a joy and rewarding experie nce to be in an environment where you were not judged by the color of your skin or the content of your character. Rather you were looked upon as the manisfestation of an opportunity, to learn about the beliefs and values of others, and to share and discuss common life objectives with those who not moments before were complete strangers.

In retrospect, I now realize that Indian people, as a whole, demonstrate a seemingly peculiar yearning to promote the   two attributes that we have all been gifted with, those attributes being tolerance and acceptance. Because of our competitive natures here in America however, we have a fear of giving too much leeway to somebody else. We thereby tend to be more concerned with judging and condemning others, rather than allowing them to be who they are and accepting them as such.

Why my concern? Because tolerance and acceptance are the first steps toward fulfilling God’s purpose for our being here. That purpose? Relieving others of pain and suffering. You see, only then can we be truly happy. And so as not to get it twisted, happiness is not just having the right mate, the slickest car, the biggest house, or the ideal job. Happiness is the result of doing God’s Will.

Each of us has been made perfect for God’s Purpose. We have each been given a unique gift that only we can use in the way we were gifted to use it. Whether it be the way we look, the way we walk, or the way we talk, only we can do it that way. So my suggestion to myself and to all of y’all is to be tolerant and accepting of whomever you come in contact with, and do what you can to make their life better as a result of having been in your presence. And while doing it…Be Happy.

I’ll holla…

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