Wednesday, December 01, 2021


Perspective is a relative concept. 

Pink Floyd sang that our lives are composed of bricks that made up our "wall." As I've gotten older, it seems much more like a jigsaw. When I was young, I realized that something was wrong with my life, but I wasn't sure what. Eventually came the inevitable "it's just me, I need therapy to accept things as they are." But then bit by bit, pieces clicked into place. I can't see the whole picture, I don't think anyone ever will. But the tiny bit I do see is a little bit clearer. 

I wish those pieces had been in place decades ago, but I'm pretty sure everyone wishes that. 

I would tell you what the picture is and what the pieces are, but they may not be of any help to you. Everyone's picture is different, everyone's pieces are different. Furthermore, everyone's model may be different. For you, it may be fractal swirls of oil in water, with different colors added to your kaleidoscope. Or it may be lenses snapping down in an optometrist's device. Or perhaps, all in all, they are just bricks in your Wall. Maybe none of those, or maybe, simultaneously, all.

Likewise, my pieces are my own. If I were to tell you that the Catholicism I had been force-fed as a child, and basically all religions were man-made and self-serving, you might see it as a revelation that you've always secretly agreed with. Or, you may know deep in your heart that that's a filthy lie, and that Jesus (or Muhammad, Jehova, Buddha, Krishna, or even A Head of Lettuce Named Ralph) is your true lord and savior who will love you and save you from the fires of Hell. It may not be something so contested. It could be waking up in your mid-forties and realizing that you've always been "neurodivergent," and that your constant learned coping mechanisms are exhausting - along with the knowledge that that and $2.75 gets you a ride on the subway.

Sometimes trying to explain your pieces to others will just result in anger. There are those who feel that they have a monopoly on suffering, and if you are a certain race, gender (sex?), or sexual orientation, then you should feel shame for their pain, and have no right to speak out against their damnation. Others will agree with you, and find comfort and consolation in your refusal to accept hate as a zero-sum game that's only allowed to be played on someone else's terms.

Everything falls back to ideology, sooner or later.

Anyways, I hope you don't feel like this is a recipe that rambles on for five pages about how the chef's mother was eaten by a pack of wild hamsters before actually getting to the ingredient list. The only advice I can give is to seek out other views and opinions, and validate ideals over ideology. Learn what you can, rather than staying within the comfort of what you know. By all means, reject what feels wrong. But you may find something new that feels right.

The most important this is to seek out what feels right for you, rather than outrage and confirmation bias against those who feel differently. Bit by bit, your own view of your world, whatever form it takes, will become clearer.

Peace, love and soul.


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