Let’s play 20 Questions. I’ll ask, you answer. Or at the very least, I want you to THINK, really think and come up with HONEST answers. I once wrote, “we lie best when we lie to ourselves.” Not sure if that was an original thought or if I heard it somewhere and forgot where but it resonates with me none-the-less. People don’t ask enough questions, or when they do, they don’t want to deal with the reality of an honest answer. I’ve also noticed how rare it is that people take ownership of their part in the situation. They’re quick to ask, “why did s/he do that?”, but don’t seem to have an answer to why they do what they do. Self-actualization does not happen naturally in this world, I’m afraid.
I spent a lot of time after I had my goober asking myself why I did the things I did. The answers, the honest, truth filled answers were often tear inducing-ly painful. And still are, but in order for me to be my better self, I have to root out the cause, learn, and grow to make better choices, to live more soul affirming answers.
But okay, here are the questions. They vary in length, but certainly not depth. There are layers yet to go through in order to get to your truth.
- Why do you fear? Was it because of something that you experienced first hand or because you heard and accepted the experiences (often exaggerated) of someone else?
- What are the filters you see life through, what shapes your perception? Do you even realize you’re looking at life through filters of any kind?
- Do the shows you watch, the movies you enjoy, the music you listen to – do these things perpetuate stereotypes? Do the leads tend to be white, cis, male, thin, blonde, blue-eyed, American? Do the villains tend to be of German, Russian, South American (Mexican), or Middle Eastern decent? (For readers in other countries, do the villians tend to look or sound like or come from places your government has deemed ‘dangerous’?) Does the ‘fat’ person only serve as comedic relief or need to be saved by the s/hero in some way? Are they ever the main focus – are they ever shown to have a healthy, loving relationship with themselves, with others? How are people of color portrayed?
- Do you know who produces (as in pays to bring the media to an audience) most of what you consider to be news or entertainment? Do you question what their agenda might be? Are they bringing to light what you want to see, hear? Or are they only producing what they want you to believe?
- Why do you watch television?
- Why do you watch the news?
- Why do you read the magazines you read?
- Why do you spend money in places where you aren’t treated with respect / dignity / as if you belong, are deserving, are ‘worthy’?
- Why do you have to have the latest, greatest…does that item really make your life easier, better, more fulfilled? What REALLY makes you soul deep happy on a regular basis?
- Why does that ‘make’ you angry?
- What’s stopping you from having, being, doing, going, seeing, believing…?
I want to take a little side trip here. I’ve posted this on the blog before but it was a couple of years ago. As a mind expanding exercise I did with my class when I was a long term sub at an alternative high school, I asked my students to name something they couldn’t do. One student said, “I can’t fly.” I responded with, “you can if you’re in an airplane.” He rallied with, “I can’t afford a plane ticket.” I quickly answered, “you can if you have money.” He counted with the predictable, “I ain’t got no money.” I shot back, “you can earn it.” We went on down the line, he with a “can’t” and me with the appropriate solution to why he COULD. The point being, as long as you’re alive, have adequate brain function, you CAN find a way to get the resources you need to have, be, do, go, see, believe…
People do it every day. Not always within the boundaries of our legal system as it’s set up, but they find a way to get money, get food, get clothes, buy plane tickets, climb mountains, have children, be with the ones they love, laugh, cry, feel, hear, see, walk, etc. People FIND / MAKE a way to get what they want.
Back to the questions.
- What is it you REALLY want? Respect? Validation? Love?
- What are the excuses you’ve been allowing to control you so far?
- Have you ever asked, “why are you telling me this?”
- Why do you feel you have to prove anything?
- What are your expectations and why don’t you state them up front?
- What’s your real intention?
- Why did you do, say, that?
- Why do you drink / take that pill / use that drug?
I’m going to attempt to get a little nap in now, before my alarm goes off and it’s time to go to work. Hope you all have a good day / evening.