Tag Archives: liberal

Political Circus

7 Nov

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So, I read this great quote on twitter the other day; “The greatest weapon against stress is our ability to choose one thought over another.” (Thank you, William James, for that morsel of wisdom.) How awesome is that? I find it to be extremely liberating when I fully embrace it. And, now that our current elections are over (YAY!!!), I believe this sort of philosophy can not only give us solace

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Apparently, half the country needs it right now

but it can also provide us with some interestingly enlightening observational opportunities.

I love new ideas. As children, we crave new experience. As adolescence and young adults, we crave new situations. But, if one chooses to progress past this point, one begins to crave new perspectives. And this makes sense: as kids, we haven’t experienced much, so that’s what we crave. Once that’s burnt out, we crave new situations, because in those new situations we find new experience as well. But, then if we get burnt out on that too, what’s left? If we explore all we can and experience all those explorations have to offer, what’s the next frontier? Is that all life has to offer? Of course not! Perception is the next frontier! But it’s a doozy compared to the previous two. This is why many don’t choose to venture out that far. They get stuck in an experience or situational mindset. And these people are everywhere! You’ll be able to identify them easily by their catch-philosophy, “I remember when things USED to be better.”

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it’s ok old timer: you’re bitter journey’s almost over

And, hey, to each his own: there’s nothing wrong with thinking that way… But those people never really seem very happy at all.

It’s ok, though. It’s understandable. New perspectives can be frightening. They can be jarring. Hell, waking up sucks sometimes. Still, other times, its pure joy and rapture.

As a kid, teen, and a young adult, I’d always loved new ideas. The difference was, I’d get one and it would either fit into my current mind set, replace something, or be rejected as false. Everything was all well and good until I started seeing that, just because an idea didn’t fit into my universe neatly didn’t mean it was wrong. Talk about existential turmoil! (I take my ideas seriously.) My competing perspectives actually began to wreak havoc in my literal perceptions. I though I was loosing my mind for a while.

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It’s ok, little guy. Your journey’s almost over too. Can you say “extinction”?

Then, I realized what my problem was: I was trying to force all these competing ideas to fit together into a solid frame work. Unfortunately, competing ideas don’t do that. Slowly, I began to see that, to be able to find peace of mind (literally) I’d have to harbor competing ideas and let them flow. Suddenly, like magic, the world made sense again. But, not only that, the world actually made sense and worked in ways that had previously been baffling, strange, bewildering, and downright insane. It was like zooming into the Mandelbrot Set and finally seeing the pattern repeat fully.

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What’s the Mandelbrot Set? Click me!

So, how does this all tie into politics and the elections and whatnot? Well, we can use this lens to view our representatives. Which ones are stuck in an experiential or situational mind frame? Which ones have more perspective based views? Which ways work best in which positions? Looking at the political landscape in this manner is not only enlightening, it’s also pretty entertaining. It helps keep perspective. Suddenly, Ted Cruz’s assertion that he’ll do everything in his power to stop Obama if he won’t do things his way seems silly, juvenile, funny, and futile, instead of being worrisome or full of strength. It transforms from an assertion of strength into evidence of how he relates to his world, which is obviously an “I’m right and you’re wrong” outlook.

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Everything you need to know about Ted Cruz

All we have to do is choose one thought over another, one perspective over another, one mind set over another. It’s awesome. It actually turns the entire political scene into the circus that it truly is. The clowns cease to be scary or threatening and begin to be funny. The trapeze artists stop being terrifyingly crazy leapers of faith and become astounding physical masters filled with skill and finesse. And the ring leader ceases to be an insane, flamboyant dictator and becomes an elegant conductor.

Soon, if you’re lucky and you’ve looked long enough, you might realize (TRULY realize and embrace) that this entire circus, with all its ups and downs, laughs and crys, cotton candy and elephant poop, the whole thing: none of it would even be possible if you and your friends hadn’t bought tickets to the show in the first place. 😉

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