Its own worst enemy
Any belief that is held strongly and taken as a stance against others is its own worst enemy. If someone who is ‘fanatical’ about their beliefs and meets another from a different path that is the same, then it brings out the worst in each of them. Both shame their fellow travelers and diminish themselves even if they don’t know it.
In the United States, the only place that I can talk about, there is a plurality of beliefs, some of them incompatible in their content with others, yet both exist side by side in a country that does not have a state religion as its center, nor metaphysical, philosophical, or religious belief system claiming a hold on our society. Though from reading those on the right and left of the political divide, some from both sides think the other side is winning.
The biggest obstacle to any system becoming understandable, beautiful, or even bearable, comes from those who label themselves as being a part of any one way or path. Groups are judged by their worst, not by the best, those who are loud, obnoxious and rude tend to bring the wrong kind of attention and it is that which sticks. The strident get the attention and get a following from those who may not be as braying but read and listen to those with whom they agree and take it as is the truth, obvious, but only to those who agree with them of course.
When people speak of marriage and why they don’t believe in it, their reasons come from the failures of marriage to actually be what it says it is. So in countries where marriage is a form of slavery, or men can do whatever they want with their wives, then it is understandable that this kind of bonding is often hated and rejected. Atheists who are loud and obnoxious tend to make enemies and not to convert others. Christians who use scriptures as a tool to bludgeon others tend to make their religions unattractive and only get resistance in return. The same of course can be said of any religion, or group that follows a certain philosophy. Babbling, jabbering, blathering, are of course the result. The sameness of the arguments takes on the irritating resemblance of being trapped in an elevator with mind numbing musak as the background. It can be either mind deadening, or very annoying, depending on the mood one is having on any given day.
Politicians as well, as a group I don’t like them, don’t trust them, but in the end, it is because of those who fail to do what they actually say they are going to do. Broken promises and outright lying seem to be the norm. However, perhaps they aren’t, I just notice those who are dishonest, and don’t hear or see those who actually live up to their commitments. Are they the majority, the ones who are dishonest and criminal? I don’t know if truth be told, for I do focus on those who bring dishonor to their group, instead of at least trying to be objective…..though objectivity is almost impossible to arrive at.
There is of course no way out of this quandary; it is life. I am just grateful we live in a country where the vast majority can disagree, even if becomes a screaming match, without us actually killing one another. Though if the so called ‘cultural wars’ continue, I am not sure about the future. Being old has its advantages. Cultural choices made today that are not thought out, and most of them aren’t, or perhaps can’t be….. can bring destructive fruit in the future…..perhaps the not so distant future. If there is an objective judge in the human sphere, it may be history. Which will only come about long after all of us who are alive today are long dead in our graves. Those after us will suffer for our mistakes, just as we suffer from the mistakes of those who came before.
Not really saying anything important I know….. for I do actually what I am writing against, it can’t be helped perhaps, though knowing it may slow the whole irrational process down a bit, just a tad We know how to disagree in unproductive ways; it is listening that is perhaps the problem. Perhaps we need more students, instead of teachers.
I think when we listen, we actually teach and allow others to form us as well, it is two way street, so both sides can benefit. Still working on that.
Edited by markdohle, 15 July 2013 - 12:26 PM.