Same Same But Different
Times change, but people not so much. There are always reasons. Things move so fast in our internet-driven, 24/7, high-speed society that it’s hard to assimilate everything all the time, so instead people lapse into familiar ways and patterns, a form of stasis perhaps, but keeping up often requires way more energy and free time than most of us have. As a result, we are all guilty of a certain rigidity of thinking.
Now before you say, “not me” let me just say I know who you are because I am you. One time, long ago when Catholicism was all I knew, I thought that everyone who wasn’t Catholic was wrong and only I and those who thought like me were right. Thank the heavens I got over that. All it took was a comparative religion class for starters, where I heard, quite clearly, people of different faiths saying THE EXACT SAME THINGS about God that I was saying.
I think not.
Today, it’s happening again for me, but this time it’s politics and the people who think the exact opposite of me politically are saying the exact same thing about my guys (used in the generic sense of the word) as I’m saying about their guys, sometimes at the same time, which is when we laugh and look at each other knowingly. Hallelujah for a break in the stalemate at the court of public opinion! It happened to me the other week with my neighbor who’s great, just not his political choices.
Coincidentally, he thinks the same about me.
I believe you’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own set of facts. My mother used to admonish us kids to keep our opinions to ourselves. In a society of over-sharers, there’s something to that. Maybe if people kept a few opinions to themselves once in awhile our nation wouldn’t be in this pickle.
Anyway, over the course of conversation with my neighbor, we both said we couldn’t believe what Candidate [fill in the blank] was doing, and when we both used the same words about our respective candidates AT THE EXACT SAME MOMENT, it dawned on me: we are entrenched and we are never going to get anywhere, never going to get out of it or remedy it, never going to do the “full speed ahead” kind of maneuvering we need to save a planet that is very clearly trying to shake off the human component of its existence, unless — we honor our differences.
That’s right — Honor Our Differences.
It’s hard. I’m not going to lie. To think that our newest Supreme Court Justice could undo decades of advancements for women with a few strokes of the pen makes me apoplectic. But I know from whence she came in all her conservative thinking because I was once her. But people can change, yes, sometimes they can even surprise us as Pope Francis has done on more than a few occasions since he took over as the head of the Catholic Church with his message of inclusivity for all.
To move forward we often need a push to find fulfillment and balance and an understanding of the process of transformation. Perhaps the world needs a life coach, or as my friend Kelly says, couples therapy. Generally, the only way to have trust in the process is to make it a collaborative one, something that’s been missing in the U.S., especially in religion and politics, for many years.
Access and consensus are imperative.
Siloing is destructive.
People who believe in God telling me I’m wrong because I don’t believe in God the way they believe in God seems illogical to me, maybe even unethical. To them I say, has it ever occurred to you that you might be wrong?
Very few things that have worried me have come to fruition. I’ll take that as a win, not because my worrying solved anything, but because it all worked out despite my interference. And things I’ve thought about people have not been true, or maybe things I’ve never thought about them have been true. Either way, my preconceived notions about people should not be the litmus test; everyone needs an opportunity to prove themselves and to be that which they came to this planet to be. Everyone. Even people with whom we disagree vehemently as in God Bless the Whole World, No Exceptions.
So what is the next version of US? What does U.S. 2.0 look like? What needs to change? What should stay the same?
Try to recall a picture of yourself from childhood. Do you recognize who you are today? Maybe. Can you go back to that person? Not without a time machine. Shouldn’t we as a nation do the same? Take the best parts of our lives and incorporate them into the next version of ourselves and try, really try, to work on the worst?
My friend and life coach —yes, I got a life coach this year to help me figure out the next version of myself: Pam 2.0! — Mike told me a story about how when he was little — maybe 8 or so — he used to walk a blind man to the bar on the corner where the man could get a beer. There was never any spoken agreement between the two. Mike just saw him one day and knew where he was going so he’d grabbed the man’s arm and walked him to the bar and waited until he was done and then walked the man home. While there, the blind man drank a beer and he always bought Mike a coke. That’s not why Mike did it. He didn’t need that man to buy him a soft drink. He did it because even as a young child Mike was driven to service and he knew the man would appreciate his help. Plus, he got to hear the blind man’s stories and in that, Mike got his first taste of listening, a skill that completely supports his current side gig and maybe someday full-time job as a life coach.
I think not.
Who you were as a kid is who you really are underneath all the learned behaviors that society forces upon us. Your true soul energy had a powerful current running through you when you were a born and it continued into childhood and lives within you today although it may be a bit more tamped down or even ravaged than the original. That doesn’t mean you should give up trying to connect.
Tap into your soul now and try to remember what it was that drove you. Reconnect with the essence of your younger self and get some answers for the you of today. While you’re at it, have a little tolerance for yourself and the rest of the world. Give thanks for small incremental changes rooted in love. They are the very best and most lasting kind.
Take the saboteur test and let me know how it goes: https://www.positiveintelligence.com/assessments/
Happy Thanksgiving to you all. I am grateful for the power of a free-thinking society that is tolerant of diversity and always evolving, always rising to the challenge and striving to live life in harmony with nature and one another. God bless us — Every One.
pam lazos 11.29.20