Sunday, June 04, 2006

Change The World

I listened to a discussion on a news program regarding the spate of knife crimes recently. All they spoke about was show to punish these people who carry knives-mainly young boys. They talked about how these boys thought they earned respect from carrying knives.

Not one of these so called experts mentioned anything about building self esteem in people. I truly believe that most of the world's ills boil down to the way we misuse children, how we rear children in fear and self loathing.

We seem to have the attitude that children are born evil and that if they are not properly trained, they will run amok, becoming serial killers. How very sad.

If children are not born feeling whole and good, then they are least born 'neutral'. We soon shatter them. We soon make sure they do not feel whole.

Either we do it through outright abuse or we do it subtly-the way it was done to most of us. We do it thru teaching them about a God to be feared-a God that punishes those that are not obedient and grateful. We do it by teaching them that they are no good unless they conform. We do it by teaching them they must control themselves at all times. We do it by threatening a withdrawal of love and affection. We do it by threatening abandonment.

Even the most seemingly loving parents who do not hit their children or molest them, still fuck them up. Why? Generally because it was done to them and they have not recognized that or they have buried it deep so as not to see it.

The world is full of good people. Loving, compassionate, brave people. Yet they are also ignorant.

They bring up children who hate themselves. Trouble is when it comes to children, no one likes to be told. In order for us to not do to children what was done to us, we have to face what was done to us and most of us don't want to do that. We can't bear the pain of knowing that what we thought was a loving safe environment was not. That what we thought was freely given to us, came with a heavy price-the loss of self. And most of all we cannot bear the fact that those who raised us harmed us.

No one is perfect. We all make mistakes. However, we are responsible for the choices we make and in order for us to make choices we need to know what those choices are. So we need to educate ourselves. Our free will can only be fully exercised through knowledge of the choices.

We cannot live life according to other people's idea's or conscience. We can only live according to our own.

We all create meaning out of our experiences. All of us. And we all create differently. We all have different ideas. No one sees the world in the same way as the next person. We all live in different worlds-worlds we create ourselves. We all have different experiences and thus create different meanings. Mostly, life becomes better merely because we created different meanings, chose different ideas and different interpretations.

My own experience has been that my life has changed drastically for the better because I changed the way I thought. I changed my ideas. I discovered other ways of looking at my life and my past. I discovered that I was not the way I was because of what was done to me physically, sexually and emotionally but more because of what was done to me mentally-the choices I was given. I was taught a very narrow way of looking at myself and the world I lived in. I found there were other ways of looking at the world and my experience. I also discovered that my ideas and perceptions were as valid as the next person's.

NO ONE , absolutely no one, knows what the TRUTH is about anything. We only have ideas. We create meaning. We do not access ABSOLUTE TRUTH. Those who say they do are not just fooling themselves, but fooling others and corrupting them. A closed mind cannot be changed, a mistake not recognized cannot be corrected.

Children are programmed in such a way that they believe their parents or guardians. So however well or sick the parents are, the child follows suit. They only have the ideas of those rearing it to hold onto. IF physical and sexual and emotional abuse is thrown into the mix, in most cases, the child blames themselves and sees this abuse as proof that they are bad people. They do not see that the abuser is the bad person. Why? It is too threatening. Children are completely dependent upon the adults in their lives so they cannot view these adults as bad and dangerous because that would leave the child feeling more afraid and powerless. Instead, they gain power by blaming themselves. If I was good, they would love me, they wouldn't hit me, they wouldn't ....the list is endless. So by believing this, the child has power. They believe they can control their carer by controlling their own behaviour(just like battered partner syndrome).

The only way out of this mess is a fearless look at oneself. And a courageous decision to go about changing the world in which one lives.

Changing the world we live in is something within reach of each of all us. It doesn't involve other people. It doesn't involve changing others. It only requires one thing-that you change yourself. YOU are the only person you have to worry about. And no, this is not a selfish aim-thru freeing yourself, your compassion and love and understanding for others grows. In fact, it is a necessary part of your own growth. Your growth will stop if you don't share it with others.

It is that simple-if you want to change the world you live in then get working on changing yourself and your wish will be granted.

Personal responsibility is the key to freedom. Use it.


Angie said...

One of the most fascinating aspects of reading about Mexican-American youth culture was the knife carrying aspect .It escalated into them killing each other ,constant trouble with the Police.They had such low self-esteem and the Church seemed to think terrifying them out of it would help .There must be lessons in that culture and how it was dealt with ( badly) that so many became drastic self-harmers ,drugs,guns etc .Schools,parents,society needs a whole new way of thinking I wonder if that is possible ?

Anonymous said...

Good God you talk sense Colin. Are you obtainable on the NHS?
If I have done one thing right in my life, I hope it is to tell my children everyday that I love them. Mind you its been very easy because they are so loveable. Having never lived up to anyones expectations (unsurprisingly) I never had any expectations of mine. They are gorgeous because they are. Despite a f**cked up mother they seem to be happy!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

We occasionally get asked to attend something at church, last time which was recently we attended a baptism of an adult, a neighbour of ours who has faced some very tough challenges, finding himself at almost 58 barely able to walk. He, his wife and their children now go to Church each Sunday and he is involved in some way and attends Committee meetings. I have been thinking about this for sometime, and all the people I have known who have had to face some tough choices have somehow found themselves gravitating towards joining a Church or belief system with meeting of some kind. When we are in the Church I often mention to my husband, wouldn't it be nice to attend church regularly, but we both have the problem that to do so would mean that people would then try to dictate to us how and what to think, and I can't do that. The downside of this is that your circle of friends is small, but the upside (and there is always an upside just need to look alittle harder sometimes!) I would rather be me and have integrity (but then that is a belief system in itself LOL).

Unknown said...

beverley-yes that is prettymuch my attitude too. Integrity is first. i can't follow what others tell me to believe if I don't! I don't belong to any organized faith becasue i will not 'toe the line'. As a result, many think I am athiest which is far from true.