You Need You to Shut Up Right Now

Yes you. Please shut up.

I am talking to you:

You, the Chicken Little screeching “The sky is falling!”

You, in the midst of your tirade against the evil who ever it is that you are certain is evil and is going to be the downfall of tribe, nation, or world.

You, so wed to your ideology, philosophy, theology, or maybe just the lovely sound of your own incessant chirping that you can’t see outside the walls of the nice little nesting box you have built for yourself.

You, who is certain that naysayers against your near-divine diatribes must be utterly and likely irrevocably stupid to dare have a different opinion than your own.

You, who are certain the brown people or white people or liberal people or conservative people or the rich people or the poor people or Muslim people or Christian people or secular people are the problem.

You, who are certain that whatever the problem you are not it.

WAIT! Some days that is me. I chirp and moan and whine and point fingers. I look down on difference in behavior and perspective and opinion. I open my mouth instead of my ears…and more importantly my heart.

There are problems in the world for certain–human, environmental, economic. Ignoring them isn’t helpful. Neither generally is our name-calling, finger-pointing, and pontificating. And most certainly our fear-mongering, self-obsession, and close-mindedness not only do not help us find solutions but create even more problems.

So, if all we can do is any of the above, we really do need to just shut up. But if we have something positive to contribute, a potential solution to a problem, a success to share, let’s do that. Over a beer or a glass of tea. With an awareness that whatever the negative circumstance we are dealing with, more negativity is unlikely to solve it. If we can open our mouths, then surely we can open our eyes and ears and minds and hearts as well. Yeah. Let’s do that.

Categories: Mind, Miscellany, Spirit | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

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7 thoughts on “You Need You to Shut Up Right Now

  1. Okay, so this one gave me an unpleasant feeling because yes, I am guilty of looking down from my “lofty heights” and pronouncing judgment on what I find evil, and yet I had to chuckle too because you are right. Sometimes we’re like a bunch of kids, and for the most part it doesn’t do anyone any good. I feel guilty for not being able to let go of my anger at my concept of ‘evil’ and yet it is still there – I would hurt those that purposely and with intent hurt others – so does that make me the same as them and is that why I am angry at them? I don’t know, but I agree that fear mongering and name calling and finger pointing only make it worse, so thanks for the reminder.

    • I very much understand your response. The question isn’t whether we should address “evil”, but how first do we define it and then how does one constructively address it? Especially in a world where the definitions vary–sometimes widely. But that we have gone here first…talking about evil…is in itself interesting to me. Why do we tend to first look to and speak to some negative? I know the world is full of “bad” things–but it is also chock full of kindness and gentleness and positivity–when we look for them. Focus creates mindsets which create circumstances. Our tendency to see the negative first may very well be the seed that grows much of the negativity we experience.

  2. Jeff, I think the tendency is part of evil itself. The scheme of the enemy of God is to not help us foci on what is Glorious. i.e. GOD. but to focus on the inglorious and broken. It applies in our closest relationships often. Someone does something very nice or even just the thing that is expected in a redeemed society and I think very little about it even if I do give thanks of praise for such behavior.

    On the other hand if someone openly does some thing that hurts me I will squeal like a pig… I truly believe it’s part of the darkness Jesus is rescuing us from according to Isa. 61.

    • Darrin, your response is going to serve as the platform for another post from me in the near future. For now, let me say that I appreciate and understand your convictions, and it helps me to do so that I come from a similar background. One of the larger problems that I see in the world at large though is that quite often people engage who do not come from similar places and have no basis to appreciate or understand. When one’s view is predominately dualistic (good vs evil), it’s too easy for most of us to just place the other person on the “other” team and basically write them off. I’m not so idealistic to think we will ever overcome that completely but neither am I so cynical as to think we can’t make progress. We have had a hand in making the world this way, thus we have can also have a hand in making the world another way. It starts by looking inside. 🙂

  3. The craft of logical philosophy requires that we retain some skepticism about our beliefs, and then there is existentialism that suggests that we make a leap of faith regarding what we can’t know. Existentialism was born as an answer to the Christian dilemma rooted in scientific discoveries versus God, or lack of proof of God.

    There is nothing inherently wrong with either of these approaches. But when people lapse into total skepticism and use it to discredit others, or when they make the leap and enter into a Blind Faith that allows them to disparage or persecute those who don’t adhere to the same belief, evil takes place.

    And then there is the lesser sin of ranting. In my case it is usually about fish. And I’m glad that you brought this up Jeff. It is something that I need to keep in mind. Thanks.

  4. Well-said redbrook…and I too have been known to rant about fish. Honestly, if we are to rant, it probably should be on behalf of the fish and other creatures that have no voice in human decisions but are so often affected by them.

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