The Art Of Discussion

debateHow many times have you read “no religion or politics” when looking at the membership rules in a web forum? I mean, you can talk about lots of other things, but two of the most important issues facing us in this life is considered taboo? . . . What’s up with that? Any talk concerning our spiritual well being . . . taboo. Any talk concerning the governing of our physical well being . . . taboo. These two categories are still, even in this supposedly enlightened country, considered unsafe because they always end up causing a heated argument . . . why?

I think it’s because we have forgotten or never (considering our age) learned how to discuss an issue using the old give and take methods of the past. Today it’s an ‘in your face’, ‘I’m right . . . and you’re stupid!’ environment. Today it seems everybody is walking around with their knowledge caps filled to the brim with everything from presidential politics to religion to global warming or any other subject that arises. That’s a shame because in the real world most of us are drowning in falsehoods, and if being honest, barely know our asses from a hole in the ground when it comes to discerning the truth behind the heavy PR media constantly feeds us.

Personally, when I was a young guy I, like the millions of young people around me, gave my mind over to my elders, governors, and preachers, and unquestionably believed what they told me to believe.

Along about 1968 or so the hippie movement came on the scene in my little midwestern industrial town. At first these guys with their long hair were considered to be goofs, but as time went by more and more of my friends disappeared into hippiedom, and I, myself,  ultimately ended up deeply involved in the Portland Ore. scene.  

Because of the coffee house craze in those days, I began for the first time to think for myself. We sat around  tables for hours openly discussing life in general, as well as the serious issues of the day, and all in a quiet, friendly atmosphere. I loved those coffee houses, but the few I see today are a far cry from the original, believe me.

Now, with the advent of the internet and this newly discovered gold mine of information you’d think the young crowd would be spending their valuable time learning, comparing notes, and discussing  all that acquired knowledge among themselves, but do they? To my old eyes they seem to be living their intellectual lives in an ‘all show, no go’ sorta way. The passion they do show seems a bit tainted . . . like a sour note in a composition. Misguided anger is never good . . . paid protesters even worse.

The great discovery for me during my time was the realization that I [we all] have a very far reaching, powerful mind. . . . and it’s ALL mine! [ours] I have learned since that moment to shun the mind controllers and to research and discover for myself what I choose to believe. I have learned to change my mind and thought patterns mid stream if necessary. I have learned that nothing is sacred or untouchable . . . So the question remains, why not religion or politics?

Here’s what I think . . . There are those whose will has always been to control our minds and benefit by doing it. They teach us to be just smart enough to run their machine for them, but too dumb to question why . . . it’s a new form of slavery . . . it’s that simple.

Today, ‘massa’ is teaching us how to belittle, or declare crazy, or anti (anything important to him) He has taught us via his media to consider anybody who doesn’t follow the party line stupid, a conspiracy theorist, racist, bigoted, etc. Today’s current administration has even upped the ante, and we are now being taught to dehumanize anyone who doesn’t agree with us.

In our nation’s early years slaves were considered less than human so that we could mistreat and over work them in our cotton fields. In the military during the Korean/Vietnam war we were taught the ‘gooks’ were less than human so that we could kill them with impunity and know that God was always still on our side, even when we bombed and burned and destroyed them by the thousands. Today in the middle east nothing has changed but the derogatory names we call the enemy.

We NEED to talk about this stuff. We NEED to learn and figure out for ourselves what to think, how to act . . . and we need to learn how to talk and discuss these issues we are facing without belittling everyone else that bears differing reasonings and understandings in the process.

We can change the world only one person at a time, and that change starts with the face in your mirror . . . the time will come when the balance has shifted and the fog has lifted but for now we are in the battle of our lives and few there be who even knows it, and fewer less who understands what it takes to make it happen.

 

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