Thursday, June 2, 2011

In Search of...enough already!

Every so often, I get a survey from one of the major television networks. It usually focuses on a few specific shows, asking me if I watch them and how often, and if not, why not. This time it was about some reality shows involving housewives and chefs, and I said that I caught a little bit of them and didn't care to watch them again. They asked me why not, and I pondered that momentarily before responding that they neither entertained nor uplifted me in any way, so I looked at them as a waste of my time.

This got me thinking. What is it we busy ourselves with that has no discernible value? What else could we be doing? What else should we be doing? And if it's true that you get out of something what you put into it, then what does that say about us? If we are incessantly filling our minds and souls with drivel, what can we expect to get out of ourselves?

One could argue that watching Snookie's drunken fender bender with the Italian police might serve as a lesson in what not to do. But wouldn't a good dose of common sense tell you the same thing? And really, what do I get from watching Donald Trump and Sarah Palin eating pizza together in Times Square? I get annoyed, actually. For two millionaires, I would have been more bedazzled if they'd bought the pizza for some regular folks in the city and then sat down with them to eat it. Come on you patriots, put your money where your pizza-loving mouths are, that's what I say! But I digress.

I love being entertained, amused, even tickled. However, I know that that alone will not in any way help me be my best self. There's a lot to be learned from other people's lives, but I can pretty much guarantee that those lessons will not be found by watching the housewives of any county, city, or state - at least not the ones on TV.

So I've turned off the television altogether and said, "Enough already!" I've begun doing something profoundly different - reading. I'll grant you that I've come to this decision after we've crowned our Dancing with the Stars champion, our new American Idol, and now that Oprah has bid us farewell. So really, what is left to watch? But still, it's the intent I'm going for here.

What else is there that I can say "Enough already!" about? How different would my life be if I was mindful of what and whom I welcomed into it? What if I carefully chose to surround myself with people and activities that enhanced my joy and enriched my life? What would it be like to be the kind of person who would be invited into such a circle?

We live in a world where we are constantly inundated with negative words, thoughts, and images. We are at the same time the collective people who feel the need to stop and stare at the horrific car accident, as well as the ones honking our horns, annoyed that the devastation before us has interrupted our schedule and made us late. Empathy and compassion have become tantamount to weakness, and strength seems only to be defined by our ability to obliterate our opponent. We seldom agree to disagree. We just plain disagree in any darn way we choose. We don't walk a mile in anyone else's shoes, let alone those without shoes at all.

And so I say, "Enough already!" It's time for those of us who are not used to raising our timid voices, to make ourselves known and heard. It's time to stop cowering in the corner and pretending that love isn't the answer. Or that the truth doesn't matter. Or that violence does not beget violence. In reality, true courage can only be exercised when we are willing to be vulnerable, speak honestly, and give a damn about both those we know and those whom we don't. It is nothing short of bravery to ignore a world that would mock us. Oh, but just wait until you're stranded on the side of the road and your AAA has expired. That's when you would just love a kind stranger to "love thy neighbor."

Ah yes. We find our way to God when the going gets tough. And we find our way to compassion when we have nothing. And if we're lucky, we remember to whisper a "thank you" when good fortune finds us. I say lets do it now. Let's say "Enough already!" to mindless insensitivity, blatant greed, and the reckless endangerment of our lives and the planet. Let's declare, "Enough already!" to those words that are used to promote fear, incite violence, and control the masses by threats, both veiled and overt. Let's decide together that it is better to swim against the tide than to go with the flow of oil-filled waters and polluted souls.

Let's agree that there will come a day when we will manifest an abundance of goodness so overwhelming and heretofore unseen, that we will finally understand that we were always and already enough. Let's act like we know it now.

Thank you for stopping by. Please tell your friends.

Peace and blessings to you,

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