Friday, February 04, 2011
The Long and Winding Road, it's Crazy.....
“Am I crazy?” It’s crazy how many times I’ve heard the word crazy in the last month – come to think of it, since “the shooting” in Tucson on January 8th. I’ve listened to the news a lot, to commentaries, updates, and different panelists and experts talking about mental health, gun laws, treatment options, breakdowns and loopholes. Should we have tighter gun control, should we enforce the laws we have more effectively; should we have a better screening process, should we encourage, require people to be more alert, aware, and ”take the next step” in putting others on alert for the sake of our collective and individual protection and self-defense? Reading Jonah Lehrer’s book, How We Decide, about the pre-frontal cortex of our brain and its role in our perception and behavior fits right in with all of this discussion, as does my study of the Ethical Values. Lehrer identifies some of the “loopholes,” to me, in where our good intentions break down on their way to creating better understanding, better “self-defense,” better behavior. As our brain evolves, he notes, we become more moral beings. Psychopaths use only what they might call reason. Their emotions are nondescript, or register on a different scale than the norm. Without loving emotions, we will not continue to evolve and become more loving (ethical) beings. What good is the intellect without love? What true value? We have to learn to explore our roots, our history of being, to begin to become aware of our internal energy universe and how this relates to our external energy universe (and all we “see” displayed in our experience, and therefore in the news).
A few days ago, under the vivid pictures from “Liberation Square” in Cairo, ran a domestic headline which read, “Mother kills teenage children for being ‘mouthy.’” I thought of my mother, my father, myself, my siblings, and all of the children and parents I’ve known in my life. I thought about what a “democracy of impulses” truly means. A “democracy of impulses” works well, is designed to work and be well, within our body. The body politic? I’m so glad we have historians and journalists, throughout time even if with other names – those who want to record and report events because they feel it is important to do so! What would a life be without memory? Or a memory of only war? Only loss? Triumph? Thank you, all, for telling your stories.
Seeing a post from my high school English teacher (in Nigeria), now in Egypt, emphasizes the point to me. I was glad to read his post, the first since the protests began in the streets of Cairo. He is safe, sending prayers to all, a positive stamp to be read by “friends” around the world. I’m glad to remember him, his family, to have been his student, and I appreciate the many gifts which he and his wife share so freely. (And thanks, Facebook)