Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Eternal Struggle

In my mind there is a battle.

The Filament Doctrine versus The Island Doctrine.

Where will I stand in the end is anybody's guess.

Some days, I feel that Island breeze blowing, and it's hard to ignore. When I see folks complaining and whining and blaming everybody but themselves for their personal failings, it's hard not to tell them to, shut up and man up.

At those times, I truly believe the old cliche, "No man is an island," is a bunch of baloney. I'm convinced that each of us has far more control over our individual choices and actions than we like to admit. Nobody is forcing us to make the choices we make, thus we cannot blame anyone else for our personal shortcomings. Even when the choices are horrible, there are still choices.

Those are my hardcore days.

Other times, I'm on that filament kick. For example, I was thinking the other day about the anti-government and taxes crowd. I was wondering if that group truly realizes how society has created government as a way to create jobs and opportunities for the private sector. All the services government agencies and their employees use help drive the economy of this country.

Seriously. We pay taxes and that money often is spent with private industry in a manner that ultimately benefits us. The folks who work at the DMV aren't just snippy public servants. They are homeowners, car owners, utility users, daycare users, grocery shoppers and everything else that most of us do. They are citizens using the goods and services that drive our economy. Without them, and others like them, private industry would struggle to find enough consumers to support the level of specialization prevalent in our world.

At least that's how I see it. We're all connected in ways we don't even realize and our actions do have an effect on the lives of others. You know, like The Butterfly Effect.

As you can see, there is an obvious conflict between my two philosophies. How can I acknowledge the connections and interdependence of all our lives, all while ultimately believing that all of our choices are truly OUR choices? The ideas don't seem to mesh.

Which means that I find myself applying different philosophies to different situations, which can often lead to the impression of hypocrisy. I don't actually think it's hypocrisy, I honestly believe that versatility is just as important as intelligence, but perception is most folks reality.

In my mind, we are all connected and responsible to each other. We are truly our brother's keeper, whether we like our brother or not. But, despite the impact we have on other people's lives, we must still remember that no one can force us to do anything. Nothing. We need to cling to both of these beliefs because ultimately they are equally empowering.

When you accept that you are truly the master of your own actions, you shed the shackles of reaction and revenge.

When you recognize that loving your neighbor is a 24/7 job you move past unnecessary aggression and agitation.

The more I think about, there is no struggle between the two doctrines that exist in my mind. The struggle is to find the proper synthesis that can be my guiding light on life's dark paths.






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1 comment:

CNu said...

nicely turned escape from the fallacy of misplaced concreteness Big Man.

now, go reread the parable of the sower and forget about this truly pernicious falsehood, as well; When you recognize that loving your neighbor is a 24/7 job you move past unnecessary aggression and agitation.

loving your neighbor is not an end in itself, rather, it is a specific methodological means to certain definite ends within the Christian praxis.

When you accept that you are truly the master of your own actions, you shed the shackles of reaction and revenge.

^^^this is part of the end.^^^

When you accept the POSSIBILITY of becoming the master of your own actions - you then at least have a rightly and correctly concrete aim for your work(s)...,

Raving Black Lunatic