“Bear in mind always that you never choose only for yourself, but for all of us.”
[Originally published on MySpace on October 22, 2010.]
“I can be nice to the end of the earth so long as nothing comes along to “rock my world” challenging my ability to be so. (Threaten or harm my child and see how fast “nice” is heaved out the window!)”
~~Deborah, commenting on “It Ain’t Rocket Science,” (emphasis added).
Hahaha, yep! In fact, there’s no heaving involved. “Nice” just poofs out of existence without transition. This I freely acknowledge, Deborah, without debate–it must be. Mama Bear (and Papa Bear!) doesn’t give a rat’s ass who you are, she just wants your beating heart on a stick, you mess with her babies. I am no different, and God help anyone who does this, because I’m well-armed (and I’m not talking guns and knives here, friends and neighbors) as well as motivated.
However! Since at the moment my son is safe in bed and I am calm, I will point this out: we are here in this world now, enmeshed in a context that engenders a need not for Mama Bear to exist (in most cases, barring abuse to the point of abomination, she already does), but for Mama Bear to come out and do what she does on a basis that is far more regular than it needs to be. For example, how did an individual who might prey on a child come into being? What hell have they been through? Though I grant you once such a person preys on a child, their life is all but forfeit, my appeal is that we create a world in which this happens a great deal less often–and this, I think, is well within our grasp.
So, put another way, we have (at least) two temporal issues here: one is what we have now, which may be met with what I’ll call “triage.” Triage is when you deal with circumstances as they are now when they are enacted before you as crisis. Someone threatening or harming your child is a crisis that must be dealt with here and now, and “niceties” (as opposed to “nice”) are not likely to cut the mustard. Even so, there are things that can be done, and the list will fall into two categories: stuff that works, and stuff that doesn’t work. But, lead time for making a carefully considered decision is short to non-existent, since the goal of the moment is to spike a gun that is already being pointed, not save the world in general.
This is the reactive side of human endeavor, right?
The other temporal issue has to do with an ongoing journey into the future which has its starting point always rooted in “now” (and of course, “now” always includes all history up to it). In between times, when your child is not threatened, practice “nice.” The idea is to lay ground work such that circumstances which CREATE triage situations are less likely to occur. This is a complex, time and energy consuming process that requires ALL our participation.
And, this might be termed the proactive side of human endeavor.
A poignant question: Where was Mama Bear for the person who threatens your child, back when it might have made a difference for that person? Where is Mama Bear at all times, for everyone? Why do we not defend each other like this? Clearly, we need defending, granted from each other (isn’t that awful?). But a rampage of bloodshed isn’t going to solve the problem, of course, except on a situational, temporary basis, and will likely immediately cause more problems as a result of having gone on a rampage. Instead, we need to practice our lives such that a rampage becomes less urgent and less necessary.
What I’m trying to get at is not that you must allow yourself or your loved ones to be abused by other people. The need for triage in crisis is not going to go away any time soon, and probably not ever completely. RATHER, what I’m trying to get at is that we ALSO need to take care to foment common ground to decrease the incidence of a need for triage, by decreasing the incidence of crisis. And to do this means we must solve problems at their root.
Another thing I’ve been hammering away at: humans are not intrinsically bad, flawed, evil, etc. We’re human. Instead of being omniscient, which necessitates a freedom from the temporal, we create meaning. That being the case, of course we’re going to stumble, fall, and get hurt. Sometimes we trip each other. Sometimes we manage disaster on a scale that is nearly unimaginable in scope. But, this is not because we lack intrinsic worth, it is not because we’re some huge cosmic mistake that is somehow our fault, it is because we learn. We grow, we evolve. We can choose.
“God’s already knocked out by you!” I ask all of you: what, down to the nitty gritty, down to the bone, do you think this means? God is not expecting us to become HIM!! He’s already him, what does he need with another him? If he wanted another him, he’da done that already, don’t you think? God knows who we are, what we are, what we can do. Let us not only have a little faith in that, let us celebrate it. Let us make it work for us. God didn’t give us free choice so that we could choose to punish ourselves throughout time for not being him. He gave us free choice as the essence of who we are, that we might become ourselves more and more if we see fit, gambling that we might also wipe ourselves out.
And my goodness, the things we can do! We’re amazing! Even the shit we come up with by accident is stunning. Not always pretty from our human perspective, I grant you, but stunning. If we can be stunning by accident, what do you suppose we can do on purpose?
Humanity is a wonder to behold. And we have the ability to become more so. Let us get with the program, eh?
Those of us who espouse something other than God? More power to ya. But!! This does not relieve you of your humanity, nor of the joy and wonder of it, and certainly you are not relieved of the responsibility that is inherent in the possession of a mind. We may have started out as amoebas. That was then. This is now–and love by whatever we call it is who we are, and it will find us in whatever guise we wrap around it–paganism, atheism, agnosticism, deism, secularism, etc.–all the isms. It is up to us whether love makes us or breaks us. Which do you prefer? Bear in mind always that you never choose only for yourself, but for all of us.
I will open my hand for your sake, and mine, and for all
If you fall away from me, yet will I whisper your name to my last breath
That you might have need of it
And I will seek you within the labyrinth
A braided twine at my heels
Should you choose to return
Or continue its path afore.
What compass I may lend
I offer, for needless to say but for saying it…
…whither thou goest, I will go.
MUCH thanks and love to Deborah for her always insightful and heartfelt gifting of herself! xxoo
7:49 AM 13 Comments 7 Kudos