Unapologetically Thoughtful Woman Seeks Thinking Humans

By Jane Tawel

July 6, 2020

Paths of desire: lockdown has lent a new twist to the trails we ...

(The Guardian: Paths of Desire, 14 June 2020)

Unapologetically Thoughtful Woman Seeks Thinking Humans

By Jane Tawel

July 6, 2020

 

I am going to sound a bit too personal and probably a bit too irritable in this post, but I figured that someone out there in my audience-land may need to hear this today.

 

I am an unapologetically thinking, thought-full, thought-provoking woman.  I am both an energetic teacher and a seeking life-learner. I am overly empathetic and feistily philosophical and I have a strong worldview that tries hard – really hard — to be ethical and moral, but also flexible and open-minded. I try to not close my mind by the continual process of opening my heart. I am equally passionate and limited, hard-working and lazy, and the yin and yang of that kind of energy keeps me humbled.  I believe in the greatness of the human spirit, the fallenness and brokenness of each of us and our institutions, and that there is Someone, Something, that IS but Is Not Us, that moves throughout the cosmos with justice, wisdom, creativity, goodness and most of all, love.

 

And here is my getting irritable part of all this:  I will do my very best, no matter when, what or to whom, to sincerely apologize when I am wrong.  BUT I am sick to the point of anger and distraction of being asked to apologize for how it makes “you feel” when I am right.

 

There are some things that are not open to opinion.  There are some things that are black or white, right or wrong. People really can be either thoughtful and intelligent and wise or unthinking, stupid, and foolish. As a matter of fact, we all are sometimes one or the other of these things, and to insist that we are never stupid or foolish or are never just plain, downright wrong, has opened the Pandora’s Box of Evils currently assailing the modern world. There is good. And there is evil.  And there is just plain messing up, making mistakes, or being misguided or selfish.  When I am any of those things, I, just like you do, try to hide behind denial, justification, falsehoods, or anger.  But I also try to want to change that knee-jerk response, and realize sooner rather than later when I have been wrong or wronging and to course-correct when possible.

 

What I don’t want to change however, is thinking that it is somehow “ethical” to be “nice” to people who are wrong. I am not speaking here of being kind to all and loving our enemies – that is something completely different both philosophically and spiritually.  I am talking about dialing back truth and allowing people to go on thinking they are “entitled to their opinions” when those opinions have ethical consequences both for them and for the world. And why, yes, there ARE times I am quite sure that I am right because the opposing idea is showing its ugly underbelly or the fungus of fallacious thinking and irrational arguments that grow out of someone’s defenses of the wrong side of something.

 

This is what having a valid, working worldview means. It means I have tools with which to examine ideas and actions – my own, and yes, others’. And if I am trying to have a growing, moral, ethical worldview, and not a completely self-centered, stagnant, directionless worldview, then – why yes, I will confidently say, “this is not an opinion, this is the right way to think / act / live”.  In other words, there are times we need to say: “Let’s look at the current hypothesis and then apply our worldviews and see if the theory can stand up to the standard of Truth.”

 

So even if we do not have all the facts about something, we can still apply an ethical, right vs. wrong, good vs. evil worldview microscope / magnifying glass / telescope to what we can currently observe, know, and act upon.

 

So while I will always try to use my empathetic nature to understand anyone’s point of view, I won’t excuse it as a valid “opinion” if it is wrong. I am not able to kill the engine on my critical thinking skills nor will I accept as opinion, those things which grow out of falsehoods or broken, or sometimes hateful hearts. And if I am wrong, I will be, if not always the first, at least at the head of the line to own up to it.

 

I don’t want a world where everyone is like me – God forbid. I wish everyone would care about the things I am writing about here, but that is not the real intent of these thoughts on myself.  I tell you some things about what I am like, to try to explain the following analysis of this post’s philosophical musings:

 

It matters to me– Who I Am, Who I Am Becoming, and (with a whole lot of help and faith and humility) Who I Can Be.  I do not want to be content with the way things are, either for me or for the world.  To riff on one of my favorite quotes by Tolkien, “I hate the times I have conflicts with people and the bad stuff that seems to be happening in my world today, but all we have to decide is what to do with the time and the character qualities that are given to us.”

 

I may be nothing in the scale of human achievement and I may be only a small bit of dust in a vast Eternal Cosmos, but all that matters to me right now, in this moment, is to believe that in some inexplicable way: I matter. And if I matter?  Then You Matter.

Somehow, our very matter miraculously matters.

 

Who We Are + What We Do = Our True Purpose in Life

 

What I Do with Who I Am is what is called “Ethics”.  Who I Try to Be, with Whatever is Done To or For Me, is called Courage.  And when Who I Am and What I Do has both ethical intent and courageous truth-telling action, then I am that Imago Dei, that very singularly spiritually-distilled essence that I am created to be – the very only, unique version of a glorious, flawed, amazing human being that is heroically ….. Me.

 

A friend recently and kindly responded to a post of mine with this comment: “I agree with everything you said, except the part where you say ‘I’m sorry for writing this’ because I don’t think, Jane, that you are sorry. And you shouldn’t be sorry”. And she was right. And I was wrong. I am not sorry for when I am right and I will not apologize any more for the things I do and say that might make someone realize he or she is wrong.  And the many times I am wrong, I will do my best to make it right. But, no I am not going to apologize any more for when I am in the right, even if someone doesn’t like it. Even if someone doesn’t like me. Because there is always a slight chance that someone will learn something they need to know, and that together, we can learn how to make the world a better, truer more right-eous place for everyone.

 

But no matter what, True Truth has a way of flinging itself upon the moorings of the world and shoring up all that is right with Her, despite us, and thankfully,  sometimes, because of us.

 

While we, of course, may indeed have differing opinions on a host of things, when we begin to think everything is open to opinion, we lose the very strength and security of the foundations we need so desperately to stand on and the reality we need to exist in as sentient beings. Someone may knock me down with hurtful words or by taking a little angry stance on what they see as their “opinion”, but though I may be hurt or irritated or aghast, it is not about me. There is a reality to our existence that is true and good whether we are aware of it or not.   It thankfully matters not if I am right, for being right does not make me who I am.  But it matters a whole, whole lot if I can never admit I am wrong, because knowing I am wrong is the only thing that can change what I do and being able to change what I think and what I do is what makes me more than a mere animal. It makes me a human soul.   We who believe that there is Some Thing, Some One more in the world that puts in all of us a desire for a better, more whole existence can hang on to this assurance: Right will always Rise to the Top.   As Maya Angelou, preaches in a poem, that is about black women, but which I’d like to think can be about any  Righteous Cause or True Truth:

“You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.

 

Does my sassiness upset you?

Why are you beset with gloom?

’Cause I walk like I’ve got oil wells

Pumping in my living room.

 

Just like moons and like suns,

With the certainty of tides,

Just like hopes springing high,

Still I’ll rise.”

 

 

Unapologetically flawed but often entertaining, Thoughtful Woman—Seeks Those Who Want to RISE TOGETHER! Pet-opinions allowed only in open spaces. Willingness to admit being wrong is a must.   Must also be willing to insist on being right. Desire others who are seeking-out truth and have a worldview open to learning and change. Hopefulness, not necessary, will be provided when together. Any race, age, gender, or social strata welcome. Contact if you are like me and looking for a “Good” Time.

 

 

IMG_1863

(Fearless Girl????)

Fellow WordPress folks:  Make sure you check out the blog posts on https://lensdiary.blog You will be glad you did!

 

The Mind is a Flibbertigibbet

Face

“Face” by ShellieMW is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

 

“The Mind is a Flibbertigibbet”

A Poem About Living for Now for Tomorrow

By Jane Tawel

May 18, 2020

*

There’s so much static in my brain,

It really gives my heart a pain.

Like flotsam, jetsam, bits of junk,

The thoughts skip by like naughty punks.

I offer to you, J’s Exhibit,

Of my mind, “Case Flibbertigibbet”.

*

Like gnats that bite at things I’m wishing,

For Future’s goals I’m always fishing.

And even when I tell myself,

Tomorrow’s plans must still stay shelved,

I waste the joy in presently,

To try to shape my destiny.

I lose today’s respite and laughter,

By hankering for a blank hereafter.

Could anything less real be dafter?

*

The Past talks trash and keeps on dissing,

With memories, in action missing.

The people, places, faces, finds,

Just roam like vultures through my mind.

They pick and swoop ‘til I’m afraid,

These flashbacks will never decay.

The Past will always be at most,

As insubstantial as a ghost.

It’s best to let my yesterdays

Inform and shape my current ways,

But not to let them roam unchecked,

And joy and purpose, now infect.

For Yesterdays only provide,

Real meaning if we let them guide,

Our current choices and our options,

for Tomorrow’s new adoptions,

of a Life– no matter how small–

that makes a better World for All.

*

So, Now’s the Time I must stop whinging,

And on the negative stop binging.

I’ll give my thoughts a well-earned rest

And focus on the good and best,

Which are not found within my brain,

But in the organ where Love reigns.

The heart’s the true and only center,

Where bad and good can freely enter,

But I decide what I’ll let stay,

Within my heart and soul today.

*

 

My mind can be so adolescent,

I must involve a deeper Essence.

I’ll stop my endless overthinking,

And to my better self, start linking,

Remembered joy and future hopes

But not false dreams or sulky mopes.

Each day I walk a thin tight-rope,

To love, and act, and sometimes cope,

With thoughts that can be used as leeches,

To heal, and grow in all Life teaches.

*

The best’s begun with just a start,

At firing up my loving heart.

Then I delight in fair Creation,

And wallow in imagination,

Of what the world can truly be,

And sometimes letting go is key.

And sometimes we must take a stand,

For Future’s sake, we do need plans.

But there’s a fine line, if I’m truthful,

Between thoughts petty or thoughts useful.

So if I start with my mind emptied,

Of dross, then I will not be tempted,

To focus on the new or old,

But cling to only Today’s gold.

*

The way to change my attitude,

Is by some focused gratitude,

For all I have, am, and believe,

About the meaning of what we’ve,

As human beings have achieved;

And what we’ll dream and do once more,

If only each of us cares for,

The Goodness we can find right now.

If we put our hands to the plow,

And water, plant, and weed and furrow–

Why then, we’ll have a bright Tomorrow.

*

So off you go flibbertigibbet,

Until the next time that you visit,

When I’ll be ready to do my part,

To help my mind with stronger heart.

*

May your thoughts Today be turned to gold, and your hopes for the Future rest in your great ability to feel loved and to do Good.  Be safe, be sane, be hopeful — Jane