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Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Good in the Bad

There are no "good guys", there are no "bad guys", and that's with a special shout out to Dave Mason's song, "We Just Disagree".  For many reasons, as a society we have a penchant for labeling people and situations as good or bad.  How many times in the last 24 hours have you found a way to demonize or Anglicize another person or event?  I have a particular fondness for giving the bitch eye to parents who allow their children to run amok in the grocery store and thinking unkind thoughts about people who leave their pets at animal control.  When one of my friends laments the status of her relationship with her in-laws, I picture the adopted relatives wreaking havoc without any concern at all for my gal pal's peace of mind.
But truly, one person, one thought, one idea, one position, is neither all good or all bad.  The split pea soup of life is a little bit of this and a little bit of that.  The reason lawyers have job security is because we can't see another person's position or perspective.  This last word is important.  Perspective is in the eye of the beholder.  We each of us comes from a collection of people, places and things.  Some of us grew up rich and others poor; there are those of us who faced discrimination and numbers who have experienced great pain and abuse.  I must also mention the select few of our masses who have lived a life of relative ease and comfort, which seems not to exist in the current media darkness, but I have met them and mostly they try not to brag when others are going through tough times.  One person's hodge-podge existence cannot match another and those events and their differences are what create our uniqueness and our disagreements.
Everyone fights, it's not the fight that counts, it is what you do after the fight that is important.  This is true in families, between best friends and after a nasty election.  Letting go of the need to be right takes herculean effort, I know this because I have been viewed by some, to hang onto a position until blood is drawn on both sides.  Why have I decided to give up my sword for a more "neutral" position?  Because I am so damn tired of the ugliness of prolonged war.
Honestly, it has taken spiritual and emotional exhaustion to get to this place of seeing beyond the right and wrong of it all.  Life just isn't simply black and white; there are colors and nuance, enormous wit, pain and beauty.  The astonishing odyssey is endless and vast.  To merely state that something is either good or bad is to diminish all that IS.

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