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Turning In

As a country, we are a melting pot of different ideologies, different ethnicities, different points of view and we strive to celebrate those differences. Historically we have been known to be a country that attracts fresh starts and offered a haven, free from persecution.  “Fresh starts” yes, but free from persecution? Hardly.

Our country was founded as a response to persecution, yet we have been the biggest violators of that ideology. It goes to show that the wounds which have been inflicted on us we continue to inflict on ourselves and others, like some sort of Ancestral Pathology.

There will always be hierarchies. There will always be differences. But judgment and prejudice usually stem from insecurity and the fear of the unknown, and we have been conditioned to attack anything that is different. Prejudice and judgment are not relegated to the uneducated, to the poor, or to the over-educated and entitled. Its commonality is a traumatized heart–– a closed heart.

Hatred does not come out of a void, prejudice is a learned behavior. As parents, it begins with us; to be a good role model for our kids, to be generous of spirit. To not jump to believe what you see is the whole story. I am always amazed to see whenever I make snap judgments I am usually wrong. Or at least I certainly do not have the whole story.

I’m being taught everyday by my children: when I interact with their behavior, rather than knowing there is more to the story, I get more unwanted behavior. When I take something personally, I have no perception and I have no ability to assist in diffusing the situation.

Prejudice takes on many faces:
      Fear of the unknown.
      Fear of what you don’t understand or can’t explain.
      Fear of looking stupid.
      Fear of losing what you feel entitled to.

Fear is the reoccurring theme. We have no understanding of how to deal with our fears, we only know that being afraid is uncomfortable and someone will pay for our discomfort.

In times of uncertainty we look for diversions, entertainment, religion, meditation, mindfulness–– anything that can soothe the savage beast, or at the very least, can create some sense of normalcy and stability.

I personally have been looking back, whether it is my age or if I am just remembering a time when the world seemed bright and fanciful. However, the truth is, every TIME has had its pain. It is just our posts and or snapshots that allows us to distort the past.

Turning Corners

I just got back from vacation in Europe with my family where we had such a miraculous time. My heart is full. 

I am moved and touched by the the sweetness and generosity of the people of the world. We were treated with such warmth everywhere we went. I am clearly an American, and like the country I come from, I still think I have that inalienable right to act impatient and entitled. We are a country of “Willie” Loman’s, marketing a time that no longer exists. America has had so many opportunities to reinvent itself but we are too busy inventing slogans that are attempting to resurrect a time that is long gone.

The world is receptive to us but through very different portals. Receptive to our graciousness, our creativity, our ingenuity, our passions, our inclusiveness. I have become arrogant and proprietorial about what I am accustomed to.  What I discovered on this trip, due to gaining some distance from my self-proclaimed reality, is that I don’t particularly like myself. I don’t say that in some sort of self-pitying way or self-accusatory way, but more as an impetus for change. I don’t have enough money, youth, looks or cache for that level of entitlement.

I saw my future in such a clear way; I am to serve, not just sometimes, but all times. I don’t think making this change will be easy, as I have to battle a cultural riptide and personal impulses, but I do think this is the right direction.