Sunday, October 27, 2013

10/28/13—Seeing Similarities

Today's Draw: Letter, Lilies and Crossroads from the Dutch Lenormand. Are there any groups or kinds of people that you just don't like or trust? Have you ever been the target of some sort of bias? Have you ever practiced trying to look past your judgments of others to see the similarities you share with them?

To me, this trio says "choose messages of peace". That's pretty straightforward. Sometimes we don't always choose the kindest way to say something to another person. Sometimes even the kindest way can hurt a sensitive soul...we can only do what we can do. But if we choose the most peaceful route, we can at least know we did what we could to be kind. 

Today I had to bring Magick Moonbeam to the emergency vet. The whole back story is long, but she was having a seasonal allergic reaction and my vet said she could take Claritin and told me the dose to give her. Well, I was an idiot and gave her Claritin-D, thinking it would be the same. And of course it's not the same and it could have killed my dog as result. I've only been to this emergency vet twice and each time it's because something I gave Magick poisoned her. The first time was those chicken jerky treats from China (before it was known they're toxic). If you ever want to feel like a crappy mother, this is how you do it. 

So I'm waiting in the emergency room and there's a lady there whose dog is in for being attacked by a pit bull. And she seems quite friendly and she's talking to me and a third lady who was there with her cat. And she's, of course, upset because her dog was attacked. But as she's talking about what happened to her dog, she says "I hate to say this, but I hate [ethnic group] and the way they don't neuter their dogs. That's why the pits are so aggressive."

Now, there are plenty of people working in this vet's office. And no doubt one of them was from the ethnic group she slammed. And me and the other lady were shocked. In my neighborhood, there are a number of families from that ethnic group and many of them are dog owners and I've never noticed anything but responsible pet ownership with them. In fact, all the abused dogs and/or un-neutered dogs in my neighborhood seem to belong to MY ethnic group. Regardless, any one of us in that waiting room or the vet's office could have had that ethnicity in us. And even though I don't, it offended me nonetheless. 

This was a woman who was impeccably dressed. From what I could tell, she'd had plastic surgery. She was someone who was clearly concerned about the way she appeared. And yet she didn't see how ugly her prejudice made her. She could have told the story about how her dog got attacked without mentioning the country of origin of its parents. It really was, imo, irrelevant to the story, outside of the fact that, for her, it confirmed her prejudice.

What I'm getting at is that many of us have certain groups or types that we don't like. I'll go ahead and volunteer that I certainly wouldn't seek out company with someone from the Tea Party, for example. But having those biases does nothing to move society forward. I have a friend I respect very much who is likely a Tea Party supporter, so if I color everyone from that group the same, I'm doing him a disservice. And just like many ethnic groups, people from different religious groups or political groups are invisible in this country, in that you can't necessarily tell by looking. You don't know you've offended someone until you've already proven yourself an asshole in their eyes. 

Beyond that, I have been a target of prejudice and pre-supposition based on both my weight and my interest in tarot. There isn't a person among us who doesn't yearn to be accepted just as we are. So why would we create "hate karma" by painting someone in a negative light based solely on superficial measure or supposition that isn't even true? And fercryinoutloud, outside of some of those primitive societies that still exist in pockets of the Amazon or in island nations, there's no such thing as anyone with a pure bloodline...a bloodline that isn't mixed with some other ethnicity, most especially if you're an American. 

So my message of peace for today is to resist seeing the differences between you and anyone else and try to see them through the lens of how they're the same. This goes for people from other cultures, people who commit heinous crimes, people who believe in a different god than you and even people who have done you wrong. At the root, we all want love and acceptance and understanding. We all have something to teach and learn. It's hard to hate someone you know aches inside the same way you do about the challenges of humanhood. We've focused on the differences long enough to know it just makes us disconnected and adds tension to society. Maybe it's time to start focusing on our similarities and see where that takes us. 

4 comments:

  1. Such a profound message caused by three tiny Lennies!
    When people feel the need to put someone down it is most likely because they don't feel good about themselves. So by putting another down they hope to feel better.
    Namaste :)

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  2. This is a message close to my heart. Very few people think of themselves as being bad, they all just see things through their own lens. So, someone else may see us as bad, while we see them as bad, but really, we're all trying to do the best we can. If we can see that attempt, maybe we can accept the other, even as we disagree with them...

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  3. I agree, Chloe. I've written a number of blogs about separating others from ourselves. We ARE all trying to do our best. And sometimes we slip. And sometimes we have different ideas of what best is. Beyond that, if someone "hateful" that "does hateful things" is in your life right now, it's your cue to look in the mirror. So many times I hear people complain about this and that regarding one person or another and I can see quite clearly how they're doing the exact same thing. They think it's different because they're doing it or because they have an excuse. But it's not different.

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