Saturday, December 21, 2013

From Greg Webb: A Certain Type of Thinkng

By Greg Webb

A certain type of thinking has opposed the American Revolution, the Emancipation Proclamation, women’s suffrage, child labor laws, the Social Security Act, the Civil Right’s Act, Medicare, and now Equal Protection Under the Law. In my opinion it is primarily rooted, the longer I live and learn and let go, less in democrat vs. republican, or conservative vs. liberal, or even 'social priorities' vs. 'economic priorities' -- and more in a deeply ingrained notion of exceptionalism. Per the list above, "But royalty is exceptional", "but whites are exceptional", "but men are exceptional", "but grown ups are exceptional", "but those with means are exceptional", "but the healthy are exceptional", and last but not least, "but straight people are exceptional". In each of these examples, those holding to such notions (and I have been guilty of holding a version of them all at one time or another, in some form or fashion) buttress this tribal need to belong and believe and be right and be better-than by being able to point to some sacred text used to instil or inspire or ingrain this tribal truth - i.e. - "Because my bible tells me so!" - And maybe it does (cherry-picked parts of it, anyway). But when we step back, and see the myth of our exceptionalism for what it is, we come to understand that it's simply one more fear-based projection, the latest attempt to insist that we can't possibly all be in this together, because that would mean that my first calling is to enrich and serve others rather than myself, which can't possibly succeed in ensuring my (and my tribe's) own survival…Yet haven't we lived long enough to notice -- counterintuitive as it may seem -- that, when we finally get together, the opposite occurs? That society flourishes? That Mandela, for example, doesn't incite or exact revenge? That the arc of history does in fact start to bend toward justice? In this season of more consciously celebrating the dawning of new light and selfless love, let us yield to our better angels, and realize a compassion -- for self and for other -- that recognizes our oneness. Such a realization...would truly exceptional.

1 comment:

mythopolis said...

A good read...thanks!!