Hoy, yo soy una tabula raza. Y cuando you escribo, es muy dificil. Pero, tambien soy un brujo, y la realidad es mi amigo. Andalé! Vamanos!……. Pop! Okay, whew! Thought I’d be stuck in Spanish all day; it’s all because last night I had a dream about my first real trip to Mexico, many years ago, when my partner in crime and I rode the train from Mexicali to Mazatlan, a brutal 30 hour ride. We found out an important piece of information on that trip.
Mexican beer won’t get you drunk, no matter how fast you consume it. It’s a decent way to stay hydrated, but that’s all. If not kept cool, it starts to taste somewhat like badger piss, though I’m only familiar with that on a hearsay level. Sure won’t give a buzz, though; it’s only about 1% alcohol. We forgot, it’s a Catholic country, and still rooted in the last century, minus one, in a cultural sense. Ah well, ’twas alright; we just spent the entire week with whiskey instead of beer. Jack is Jack, no matter where he travels……. Oh, I was wrong yesterday…..I didn’t lose my mind; it’s here somewhere. It’s just that due to intense mind fog all thoughts have been grounded.
Okay, I’m ready…..let’s rock…..
“The common folk have many sayings, all about it being darkest before the dawn and clouds with silver linings and suchlike. We in the magical trade like to express our opinions of these matters somewhat differently. A lifetime of experience will have taught the average sorcerer that no matter how hopeless the situation seems, no matter how painful and fraught with danger his options may be, no matter how close he may be to an indescribably hideous death and perhaps even eternal damnation, still, the good wizard knows, it can always get worse.” — The Teachings of Ebenezum, Vol. XLVI (General Introduction)
Yesterday, one of the outstanding readers who have stumbled upon this blog sent me a comment. It was somewhat long and involved, but perhaps the best part was when he oh-so-gently chastised me for lacking faith in the goodness of human nature, and rightly so. My recent rantings have been somewhat critical of our beloved ruling class, and others, and he noted that it is entirely possible that they are merely living up to the expectations placed on them by virtue of being in the public eye, rather than exhibiting any malice aforethought.
I am compelled to agree with him, at least to an extent. It is easy to become TOO negative, and I probably stepped a couple paces over that line lately. But I also have to point out that, regardless of how tongue-in-cheek the above statements may be, they are accurate as to the basic message given in the final line. It can always get worse, and if Murphy is anywhere about, you can count on it…..I suppose all we can do is what we’ve always done, throughout history, and that is to keep your clothes, spell books, and weapons where you can find them in the dark…..
You could say I’d lost my faith in our politicians.
But it was a small loss, considering there wasn’t much there to begin with…..I’d be willing to have a bit more faith in them, if even one of them would stop consistently lying to me. Note I said consistently; I’m adult enough to realize that, being what they are, they have to lie. If they could just learn to not lie EVERY time they open their mouths, we could reach some kind of compromise agreement. But they don’t seem to want, or seem not to be able, to do that, so I’ll just have to go on wallowing in my disbelief. That way, I’m not disappointed so often……. My mind ain’t so open that just anything can crawl right in.
“Washing one’s hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral.” — Paulo Freire
‘You can’t go home again if home is a place you’ve never been.”– Ursula K Leguin
Sad it is that too many people in our society, of all ages, know exactly what this means, from cruel experience. Society has always had its poor and homeless, and repeated explorations into the reasons for it have all been inconclusive, for they all get to the same point and lose coherent credibility. When the vagaries and complexities of human nature are brought into the equation, the sheer number of variables makes the equation unsolvable.
In other words, nobody knows for sure why society arranges itself as it does. We just don’t know enough for certain to be able to say with any high degree of confidence, “THIS is why this is so”. Thus, any and all attempts at solution to the problem have been ineffective at best. We live in a nation with more natural resources than all but a handful of countries around the world, but we still have a small but significant percentage of our population who don’t know whether they will eat today, or whether they will sleep indoors tonight. I can’t say I’m any smarter than anyone else who has looked at this issue; I don’t claim to have any magic bullets. But I can feel compassion, and I can wish……..
“I once wanted to save the world. Now I just want to leave the room with dignity.” — Lotus Weinstock
Boy if this ain’t the truth! I can’t really add anything to this; it’s a relatively perfect observation of how our attitudes change over time. I’m just glad that dignity is still the goal. I should probably be glad that my self-expectations haven’t devolved any further, to where all I want is for it all to end. It will take a lot more pain and anguish before I even look in that direction, much less consider going there…….I’m glad to be obstinate, in this instance at least…… besides, if I aim any lower, I risk being hit myself, by a ricochet…..
“If you have a particular faith or religion, that is good. But you can survive without it if you have love, compassion, and tolerance. The clear truth of a person’s love of God is if that person genuinely shows love to fellow human beings.” — Dalai Lama
Here we have some plain common sense, in the guise of eternal wisdom. I like to think that even the most dogmatic religious devotee, of any religion, would agree with this concept. It’s difficult to object when it matches so closely the most basic beliefs of almost every sect. Though proponents of each world-view may differ greatly on the shape and nature of what they worship, none would deny that love, compassion, and tolerance are lessons taught by all of them in their study and contemplation of human nature and its niche in the scheme of things. In every face with which God is seen by Man, one may see these three attributes written clearly on their visage. If we have any redeeming feature written on the slate of our souls, love for one’s fellow man would be that characteristic…..
“[…] For all our conceits about being the center of the universe, we live in a routine planet of a humdrum star stuck away in an obscure corner […] on an unexceptional galaxy which is one of about 100 billion galaxies. […] That is the fundamental fact of the universe we inhabit, and it is very good for us to understand that.” — Carl Sagan
The only thing that makes a democracy work is the force of morality. If all that is in place is the force of law, you have a police state. The force of morality always comes from a deep belief that you are accountable for all your own choices — even those that aren’t discovered or punished by law. It is the force of morality that lets us focus on what we share working together to make a better society.” — Callan Williams
I don’t think I need to add anything to this statement either. It pretty well matches my own take on the subject, which is rooted in the concept of taking personal responsibility for one’s actions. Too many people in today’s society have never even been exposed to this concept, and to expect them to be able to live up to it is unrealistic at best. Moral action requires more than simply having an impulse toward right action; it requires that one find the courage to then act upon those impulses. Not everyone has that moral courage, as it is hard work to get to the point of understanding it and making it a part of one’s set of behavioral guidelines. Very hard work, and most folks honestly don’t have it in them to make the effort. That is a shame, to be sure; modern life would be a lot different if this morality was more common, and I can’t help but think those kinds of changes would be a good thing…..
Well, I’d better stop here. I’ve already said more than I intended when I sat down; I guess that’s par for this course. Time now to go out and see what the day holds……y’all take care out there…..
Sometimes I sits and thinks,
I just sits.