Well, you are, you know.
Over the years, directly due to my now-held convictions, I have developed a philosophy that everyone is special/ beautiful/ important ( you pick the predicate adjective of your choice in this context) in their own individual way. I mean I really believe that.
It is in sharp contrast to the body of information delivered to me from parents, teachers, and church. Perhaps todays world is just more conducive to this idea, now, but it’s been my Christian conviction that has me practicing the art of looking at other people this way. It is an art form when practiced regularly, I believe.
The trouble is that lately my philosophy is being challenged… maybe the word is assailed. Perhaps it is because my time spent surfing the web is giving more exposure to the world’s system. I can’t say with assuredness. Some of the comparisons with other’s ways of life, talents and abilities, and their success levels is either mixing with underlying insecurity or it is creating some crevices in my heretofore strong sense of what’s what. Or quite possibly it is just the sadness that I am prone to when I see the weight of mistaken standards holding sway. I tend to personally identify with the pain that causes, even if I don’t personally feel convinced of the accuracy of the view.
Probably some of all the above.
There is a lot of competition in the ideas of who has the best blogs, etc. Some of that is the healthy culling of styles and ideas, the sifting process by which skill is forged. Some, however, is just an intellectual demolition of a different breed and belittling a different focus.
Our society is full of this pastime, and it seems whole series of popular television shows are built on it, but just what does it really cater to in us? This might be seen as criticism of the whole exercise of parody, et al. but I don’t mean it that way. I like to laugh at foibles, and the line of what is acceptable is hard to determine. So I am trying to make the point tentatively, here.
I just think there are better ways to elevate the excellent than to denigrate the average. Most of us are very average, but all have something that is special. Something that makes us count in the great whatever of life. It might not evidence itself in the particular activity that we would like, but how will we become aware of it in ourselves -or others- unless we hold an untarnished measure? Untarnished by the fashionista and social maven’s dictum.
Part of the tarnish comes from less than careful criticism and those laughs or knowing nods at another’s expense. I kind-of don’t like that. It sets my teeth on edge and rouses my ‘save the underdog’ mentality.
Which is not always a good thing. Crusading is a most uncertain undertaking, and has been known to get misdirected. Mostly because we often become the thing we hate. Maybe this is one reason that God is so adamant that we forgive and be harmless. So our focus can stay true.
Now people will think I’m out to ruin their fun. I don’t mean to, I just think we ought to be careful with each other. Criticism is just so easy to do, and edifying is just so hard, sometimes. I wish I was better at the latter. The writing of it is easy, the abstract “we ought to” just flows like honeyed syrup from my thoughts… it’s the humble application that proves sticky to me… and probably to lots of us. How to improve the shining hours without smashing someone else to bits. Now there is art.
Oh wow. I think I finally get what Carroll’s version of ” How Doth the Little Crocodile ” is talking about ……