Friday, June 22, 2018

Stuckness

"An egoless acceptance of stuckness is a key to an understanding of all Quality." Robert  M. Pirsig (Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance)

I have been fighting stuckness for more than four years now.  It's as if my physical trauma back then somehow grabbed hold of the mind that once spilled over with creative story ideas, wrapped a chain around it, and stuffed it in a closet.  I haven't been able to accept the situation yet. I keep pushing back, trying to pick the pocket of my jailer and get the key to the chains, but it hasn't worked. 

For example: the seventy-six words in the preceding paragraph took more than half an hour to write. Five years ago it would have spilled onto this blog in less than a minute.  
Why not now?  Not only did it take that much time, but the act of putting those words out was also anxiety provoking.

Here is my thought: to write whatever comes into my head without censoring anything and see where that goes.  Are you ready?

***

Note: It is now over a month later.  So much for moving on.  I wasn't ready.

In my defense, I was on the road from May 12th until June 8th.  But still: I had sporadic internet access, I've been sketching out a travelogue of the trip each day, and I had ample time to compose my thoughts, but I didn't.

***

It is now June 22nd.  I had breakfast with good friends and we discussed, of all things, politics ... sort of.  We talked about the term progressive among others, but I want to highlight progressive.  Not the capitalized word with the article 'a' in front, but the simple noun.  

I am progressive in that: I believe in the right of everyone to have access to health care that is not driven by their ability to pay, I believe that we need to make sure all residents of the USA have housing, food, and access to quality education, I believe that capitalism works when it isn't accompanied by greed, I believe that everyone who is able to work for a living should - but if there are no jobs they should still be able to have a home, food, health care, and education.  I believe that every job should pay well enough to provide those necessities.
I believe that government is responsible for ensuring that those elements work and that, when one's work life is ended, there is support through the remainder of that life to enjoy the fruits of  years of labor without worry.   

For me progressive is not a label, it is an attitude, a way of looking at my world.

We as Americans, and I suppose all other members of humanity, tend to apply labels to people, and that's unfortunate.  We label them by religion, by political perspective, by income, by ethnicity, by color, by sexual orientation, by gender identification, by any of a bunch of other terms.  The only label that has any validity is Human.  everything else is an attempt to find a slot, a convenient place where we don't have to treat the person as an individual, where we can apply a set of generic opinions which is easier than getting to know them.

I try to reject labels when getting to know a person.  I try.  Mostly I succeed, but not all the time.  I guess I'm asking all of you who read my infrequent posts to look into your own attitudes toward people and try to see them as individuals, not as labels.

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