HOLLYWOOD – You’re born, and right away you start to defecate like nobody’s business. It’s a mess from Day One. But Mom has it under control and eventually you’re housebroken. And from then on it’s pretty much your business whether or not you make it to the toilet on time.
Before you know, Pre-K kicks in. Anxiety separation was not so bad, after the first day’s trauma. (Or at least that’s what you keep telling yourself.)
Anyway, at some time during the next 30 years, you either suffered sudden destruction or else you discovered a way to make a living that seemed better than staying in school until old age sets in. If you were fortunate, you found your purpose in life. If not, maybe you set into a pattern of living that wasn’t too meaningless.
Maybe you made a fortune. Maybe you made a mark. Maybe you became incontinent and had to wear Depends.
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But whatever else happened, whatever successes or failures, whatever path you took, you probably measured most things along the way, and observed them from a certain angle, according to a standard that is more or less inaccurate.
Haha! You probably think of that last statement as absurd, arrogant, and presumptuous. I don’t blame you. But I’ll bet that there is a lot of truth to my assertion in the case of most people.
After all, look at society. Look at civilization. Is it really all that civilized?
Of course, I am asserting that the standard of civilization, as it could be, is much higher than the pathetic standard that seems to be accepted today.
There are people who do not simply settle in to whatever arrangements they stumbled into along the way during their early years. There are people who know who they are early on, have a focus on where they want to go, and live with purpose. But even many of them measured by a standard that is simply inconvenient.
So what makes me so well informed? How do I know these things?
It does not really take a genius to figure out how screwed up the world is. Just look around. Some commit abusive and destructive acts because they are poorly motivated, looking for power, or for ill gotten gain, or to do harm. Some get caught up in destructive or abusive patterns they inherited from someone. Some were helped down the path of deficient reasoning by nefarious or inept educators.
Even many of those among us who in some sense seem like productive citizens, balanced conservatives, pillars of the community, suffer from deficiencies that resulted in poor decisions, about which they still do not even realize that they were poor decisions. They think of them as good decisions, the kind of which they are proud, which they would still replicate.
I do not have all the answers. But I am certain that, if we each actually took seriously the principles of the God we claim to worship, our communities, society, nations, civilization, and the world could not possibly be what they are.
Our communities, society, nations, civilization, and the world are as they are because our standards tend to be inferior to those we claim to hold as superior, with which we so often tend not to comply. We believe that we believe, while our lives reflect a less-than-unadulterated condition of belief. We are unenlightened, or hypocritical, or feigning. Whatever we are, it is less than perfectly sincere.
Yes, yes – I have a lot of time on my hands, lying here in this hospital bed. Maybe I’m under the influence of something. If you think I sound a little off, I guess I’d find that comforting.
But whatever else you want to say, I still have full control of my bowels.