A couple great minds over the past year have been reinforcing the necessity of knowledge of self to me. And not the cool packaged kind for $19.95, or whatever–no, real knowledge of self. The kind that only develops after innumerable hours of researching, dialogue, and reflection. These great minds took the time to remind me that other avenues taken in the interest of liberation have not worked, and are simply not the answers. And yet, these are the same avenues we continue to push for. Why?
Most teachers and leaders offer no truly sensible solutions, no new information, and no direction. The same propaganda has been promulgated for decades but has yet to bring about that highly sought after change. Followers are encouraged to listen, buy products and lend their support, yet they fail to help cultivate the seeds of critical thinking and objective analysis that lie dormant in most of our minds–rendering our conversations fruitless and actions futile at our own expense. Which in itself should make you question whose interests they are really serving.
The change that many of us are looking for cannot be made within this current system. It is against its very nature. This system is not one that respects humanity, it dehumanizes and devalues. Our worth is measured by what we have, not who we are. The solutions will come once we all achieve the same level of understanding of what it is we’re dealing with. Change has to be initiated from within each of us. But, we all have to collectively define what change that is–undefined goals are counterproductive. Until then, we will be trapped in this vicious cycle for generations to come.
I’d like to offer some humble advice to those who are willing to listen to help prevent you from learning this lesson the hard way.
In life, we must understand that we can not help those who don’t want to help themselves. For example, many of us have had experiences with drug addicts and alcoholics and know that as much as we try to tell them they have a problem, they don’t feel like they do. They have to recognize the problem themselves. Often times this requires a “rock bottom” scenario that said-person experiences. This applies to many other problems as well. Maybe a person is a compulsive liar, gossiper, unfaithful in a relationship, untrustworthy, verbally abusive, etc. It is important to stay positive in life and you have to know when to hold ’em and when to fold ’em when it comes to friendships and relationships. There is no use enduring the hardship and struggle that comes with this when you are in complete control of who you choose to keep around you. There is nothing positive that can come from staying in a negative situation unless the cause of it can be changed. You can’t force someone to change all you can do is bring the problem to their attention and they will either see it and fix it or they don’t at which point you either stay and put up with it knowing it is detrimental to you or you cut them off. By no means am I saying cut off anybody you aren’t seeing eye-to-eye with or whatever but when you have done what you can do and have exhausted yourself mentally, physically, and spiritually then what other choice do you have? You can’t control what people do or who they are only they can. So, if need be, move on. Don’t be mad, don’t hold a grudge, just accept them for who they are and keep it moving.