A letter from a friend and my response about perspective and “the patience of the saints.”

I received the following from a friend and supporter:


“Please consider that some of us are experiencing some serious cognitive dissonance, feeling completely helpless and disillusioned with much of what is happening around us. Reading or watching the news is a sure fire recipe for sadness. Have people always been this way, is the media focusing on it more than times past, or is something transpiring to give people permission to behave in the most horrific ways? From the way they treat others to the way they treat animals, I just cannot reconcile the cruelty. If I help ONE person, does it matter? If I watch and do nothing because who am I to interfere with someone else’s free will, does it matter? If I fight for my own survival, does it matter? Is it right? Or do I just descend into hardship because that seems to be the course if I do nothing? It is an utterly impossible set of variables that we all face, wont to be true to ourselves and yet paralyzed by the obstacles. I cannot take enough deep breaths, meditate enough, drink enough, smoke enough, to make the suffering go away or to numb myself from those things over which I have no control. Nor can I seem to develop an eternal perspective that makes me understand that we will all be okay. I tightly hold onto my own little world, the smile on the faces of children who don’t yet realize the shit storm they have dropped themselves into… and shame myself for these moments of happiness that feel stolen at someone else’s expense.

“I am in this space more than I would like, more than is healthy and in these times I throw my hands up, shake my head and wonder if anything matters … I do not want what I think I now understand to get the best of me, to take away my happiness or my ability to feel joy and so any pearls of wisdom you have are greatly appreciated.

“In the words of Carly Simon, “In the name of honesty, in the name of what is fair, you’ve always answered my questions, but they don’t always answer my prayers…”

 


I responded:


You might have read my Daily Journal post yesterday, but you probably didn’t see the Facebook Live video I did while I was writing it.  If you would have watched the live video feed of how I felt when I wrote the post, you would feel just how connected we are … often feeling the exact same way about things, with one important difference: I have the answers, you do not.
Yet, having the answers does not remove the “cognitive dissonance, feeling completely helpless and disillusioned.”
Having the correct perspective does.
I so often fail to give people the correct perspective, at least as it seems to me, blaming myself for my incompetence and my inability to deliver the message correctly, clearly, simply.  Then I sink into the great depression that I am in, wondering, “WTF? How could I, alone, out of billions of humans, be the ONLY true messenger?  Is there not one stronger, smarter, more emotionally secure, who can do it better than I can.”
Sigh …
Then I wait for them to find someone else.  Sometimes I wait in bed and do not get out, and even if my body does get out of bed, my mind does not.  It lays dormant in hope of another dream experience, waiting, longing for the dreamscape to change or for me to wake up.  And when I can’t lay there any longer with “cognitive dissonance, feeling completely helpless and disillusioned,” I know there’s no other way … except one:
“CHANGE YOUR FUCKING PERSPECTIVE, CHRIS!”
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