Something occurred to me this week. I shared it on my Twitter page (Yeah, I sucked it up and managed to open one of those), and I want to elaborate on it here:
If you see the world as it should be, that makes you part of the problem. If you see the world as it could be, that makes you part of the solution.
Let me dig a little deeper here. the world is full of people who know better than everyone else how things ought to be. Most of them are politicians. You know the type. They think everything boils down to enough government programs to "fix everything." Government programs for roads. GP's for food. Clothing. Shelter. GP's to make sure your kids are all immunized. GP's to tell us what kind of food is "best for us." Where we should live. Whether we should smoke. What habits we should have. Who we should be nicer to. What is too dangerous for us normal folk to do. They know better than we do how to spend our money, so they take it from us in the form of taxes. And those who they think make too much money? Well, let's just tax them more. No one should have a Cadillac until everyone has a Kia, right? "From each according to his ability to each according to his need." (quote by Karl Marx, in case you're wondering)
Why stop at politicians? Church people can be just as bad. You know the type. They are so busy telling everyone else they're going to Hell, they neglect the part about telling them about Heaven's Free Gift. They're so hung up on the rules of their religion, you simply can't force them to have fun. They can find something wrong with that cream puff on your plate if you give them another 5.4 seconds to think about it. Don't you just want to just slap the Hell out of them?
Lawyers are my third bunch of contestants. Of course, I think they are so busy making money off of other people's misery, they can't see and don't care about the legal implications that they encumber the rest of us with. The bigger problem is, some DO know and care. Groups like the ACLU who spend most of their time trying to tell the rest of us what we should and should not believe.
Okay, yeah. These are the folks who see the world as it should be. They are all "other people" focused. The problem is always with someone else. They are concerned with making us all get along. Someone else needs to be more accepting. Someone else needs to be more open-minded. Someone else needs top pay more. And these folks are just the ones to make us all fit their image of "How the world should be."
Let's look at this from the other angle: Those who see the world as it could be. They are the sincerely religious who know that one's eternal fate is between them and God alone. They might share their beliefs, but are never "in your face" with it. It becomes part of a healthy discussion that never alienates, never pushes away, never condemns.
Someone very wise once said, "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away." (Paul of Tarsus, from his First Letter to the Church in Corinth, aka I Corinthians, Chapter 13. Like how I did that?)
So Love does not hang around military funerals and wave signs about how God hates ANYBODY. Love doesn't pay attention to how much another person makes, and why "they aren't paying their fair share." Love comes from within a person and reveals the best in them. It is what the world could be, people.
Those who see the world as it could be are centered on themselves and how they can do something to make someone else's life better. They don't keep score. They just do. They love and expect nothing in return. They see the best in the world, because they give the best in themselves. They accept without having to agree. They don't need a law to tell them what hate is. They're too busy loving others to worry about it. Let me clue you in, folks: "Hate Crime" is s stupid term. If someone is committing a crime against someone else, it automatically counts as hate. Just punish the crime, and you deal with the hate at the same time.
The wisest man to walk the Earth said once, "Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You
hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will
see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye." (Jesus of Nazareth, from Matthew's Gospel, Chapter 7).
Tell you what. Let's quit trying to make the world into what it should be, and start making it what it could be. We could all do with a little less stress worrying about something beyond our control. Just do what you can. Love one person who's unloveable, who drives you bananas. You don't have to agree with them. Just do something good for them. If everybody can do that, don't you think we can fix a whole lot of things? Don't be part of the problem. Be the solution.