the trough of media feed is engineered for me

Pay attention

I swear that the next time I buy nail clippers, I am going to chain it to a log, something so big that I would never lose the damned thing again.

I must own three of them, and yet every time I’m left searching around trying to find them.

And then it appeared. It was laying there, right in front of me.  I had been looking around so much, thinking about where they could be, that I hadn’t been paying attention to what was actually there in front of me.

There’s a lot of thinking to be done today. Because there’s a lot of information making impressions. There’s also a lot of heartfelt loyalty to camps, parties, race, and gender, and this makes paying attention hard to do, because I’ve limited my attention to thinking about the information that I care about: the information that supports my cause.

I lift up my head from the trough of media feed that’s engineered for my consumption, a tempting and tantalizing mixture of fear and drama.

Then I take a look around.  And I notice Reality.

Reality doesn’t have a camp.  Reality stretches out far and wide.  It requires paying attention, and processing new information.

And this is more enlightening than sitting in a camp, trapped by my thoughts.  Go explore and learn new things: no need to protect the camp.  There’s a whole world out there to pay attention to.

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Enforced communion

community

 

Do you lean more towards empowering individuals?

Or more towards empowering the institutions?


More simply, do often find yourself in the group that wants to be left alone to build your home and community?

Or do you find yourself in the group that won’t leave others alone, and wants the institution to build your community for you?

Through church authorities or government authorities:  Forced communion is not as meaningful as independent communion.

Voting is good.

Participation in your community is better.

 

The best way to be more successful than your neighbor

King

I was envious of his car, a BMW, a beautifully made vehicle.  And his big house, with all the life options it offered.  And his career, working a lot, but earning a lot.  He had no real troubles.  He took his kids to football and dance practice.   I could see he was happy.  But how could I know?

Success on the outside doesn’t mean success on the inside.  I had no idea what was going on inside his head.  Then I found out he suffered from depression. And insecurity. Impossible, right?  But, it was happening.  And then I heard he got a divorce.  A devastating thing to go through, splitting from your partner.

And yet….

We’ve all got it pretty good.  At least, in the First World, but even in Africa.  For the average person, it’s the best it’s ever been in the history of humankind.  Worried about being robbed by bandits? Not so much anymore.  Losing half your children in childbirth? Not really.

Lifespan, up;  General health: up. Incidence of assault and robbery: down.  Females CEOs: going up every year in the US.  Black and brown minorities fill our judge seats, academic faculties, and medical professions. We even elected a black person as president after a history of slavery.

But that doesn’t mean injustice and wrongs don’t happen. We are human after all, with immorality and prejudging seeded in each of us.  After appreciating the good life, we can still make our community a better place by helping each other, by taking responsibility for being a good neighbor.

Gratitude and love are still the most critical parts of human life. That has not changed. What has changed is your environment.  It is a much safer place, and more fruitful than it has ever been.

Yes, the kings and moneyed class still control more than you.  But they’re not more happy than you.

Choose your own game.

Because we don’t need the kings anymore.


Photo credit: Aubrey Marcus podcast