I like that number written out. Not so much in its numerical form. But the words look good together. And I like the way it sounds.
This is my seventy-fifth blog. And they said it wouldn’t last. Well, I’ve actually written more than seventy-five, but some of them have been left un-posted. Didn’t want to scare the little children, shatter all the monuments we build to ourselves, or hurt anybody unnecessarily. Some of them will get posted down the road. Everything in its own time. Like it’s been said before “we will serve no wine before its time.” As you may have already noticed, some of my postings are wine, and some of them are just whine. It’s good to have choices.
I want to take this opportunity to explain some things about myself, to maybe clear up some misunderstandings. God knows, just about anybody who knows me, or reads my writings, has at least a few misunderstandings with me. I’m not an easy person to relate to. I’ve always known that, but at least I know that about myself. First, let me say that, I live in two distinctly different worlds. They are not distinctly different for me, but for others. I feel that I have achieved a balance between the two, an integration of sorts that serves me well and offers a distinctive, and satisfying, worldview. For others, I am either a borderline Christian without proper dogma, or a secularist with too much religious influence. In truth, I am an admirer of Christ, not in the traditional religious, and delusional, sense of worshipping him, but in a genuine and practical way, with a tremendous respect and reverence for the example of his courage, humanity and sacrifice. I find no other figure in modern, or historical, life who’s example I am as compelled to follow as his. To put it simply, his teachings, and the example of his life, make sense to me. He makes sense to me. And, in fact, the older I get the clearer he becomes. As I have said many times before, I do not worship Jesus. I think I know him well enough to know that he would not want to be worshipped. North Korea’s Kim Jong-il wants to be worshipped. Madonna wants to be worshipped. Christ was a man of strength, humility, love and compassion. Those men do not want, or need, to be worshipped. If you’ve never read the gospels you ought to check them out. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
I do not write, and I am not here, to be loved. Being loved is no longer a concern of mine. I’m all grown up now. Some will love me, some will dislike me, and some will find me irrelevant and not care one way or another. That is how it should be. I embrace that. No, I am not here to be loved, but I am here to love.
There is no love in dishonesty, and there is only honesty in love.
My writing has the potential to offend, to feel ‘unlovely’, and I acknowledge that, but I don’t worry about it. If I rail about politicians and religious leaders it is because of the double standard with which they conduct their lives. It is not about them personally. It is about their hypocrisy. It is about their dishonesty, and it is about their cowardly leadership. I’m sure they have many good qualities as well. If I express disgust with celebrities, it is because they enjoy the privilege of fame and fortune, but eschew the responsibilities that accompany holding such an elevated position in our culture, a position that creates, and perpetuates, standards of behavior for the rest of us. As eroded as their character becomes as a result of our idol worship, I’m sure they have redeeming value also.
If I sound an alarm about a cultural trend, it is not because I sit in judgment of those involved in the trend, but to offer them a perspective other than their own, and an assessment of the repercussions, and consequences, of participating in the trend. I am perfectly willing for my assessment to be rejected. If I call out the drug culture (from which I came) for its blind indulgence, or if I emphatically denounce the lie that pot is not a dangerous drug, it is not because I think ill of drug users, find them stupid or pathetic, but, in fact, it is because I love them and am willing to tell them the truth, to stand where the cultural leaders are unwilling to stand. Many doctors (pot smokers, no doubt) call pot a harmless drug, and many users echo those comments, but they fail to take into account that marijuana erodes the spirit of a man, from the inside. It compromises his integrity, clouds his ability to reason, restricts the development of his brain, and alters the accuracy of his perception, his self-perception even. In effect, it negatively controls his development when he thinks he is in control of his own. Experts working in the field of drug rehabilitation are unanimous in stating that a pot user does not even begin to recover from the effects of its influence until a full year after he stops using. Former users say the same. Sad to say, users do not even know what they don’t know about themselves. I do not point these things out out of derision, but because the families of these users love them and want them back.
I write about myself sometimes. As you’ve already discovered, I’m a contradiction. But at least I’m a solid contradiction. I will continue to write about myself because in knowing me you will begin to know yourself better than you already do. We tend to find ourselves in the minds, and lives, of others. I am someone you may find interesting to know, but would probably not want to be around for too long at any one time. I know that about myself also.
There are many of you who read my blogs, I know that from the website numbers. Most of you read me anonymously, that is, that I don’t know who you are. That’s OK. That’s fine. I’m the writer, you’re the reader. That’s the relationship. I write, hoping that something I have to say will make a difference for you. Move you, make you smile, make you angry, make you feel something you haven’t felt in awhile, inspire you, make you laugh, validate you, or push you away from a flame. I would hope to motivate you, or enable you to see something in a different light. I would hope that you would disagree with me sometimes. I disagree with myself sometimes.
I also write because I need to write. I’m a ‘constant thinker’. I never stop thinking. Ask my wife. I even think when I’m asleep. Life is a process of movement and clarification. Writing helps with both. I hope reading what I write helps with both for you.
If you’ve enjoyed my writing, what I would ask from you is that you don’t keep me a secret any longer. Have the courage to share my writing with a friend. You can email any of the blogs, individually, by clicking on the little envelope at the bottom of the blog, or you can send the web address so they can look it up for themselves. Send it if you agree with what I have to say, and send it if you don’t.
I promise I will, eventually, offend, in one way or another, anyone you might ever send it to. Oh, and that anonymity? Come on out from under the couch sometime, and let me know you’re reading.