For forty years I’ve been engaging life almost as if I were a scientist that used myself as a test subject or as a player-coach in a game between me and the “What’s In It For Me” Culture that is so pervasive in American society. Before I share my observations, I’ve done a lot of internal processing. And I do my best to only share what I believe could be of service. So here’s one about the human mind and how I think some of us process variety and diversity.
When I go on walks, I’m always surprised and sometimes even moved by my respect and appreciation—some may even say reverence—for the beauty and variety of weeds. I even look at the different ways they manage to survive and I think, “My God there has to be an intelligence behind this design.” As I allow myself to be in wonder, a sense of awe comes over me. After that, guilt starts to arise as I try to reconcile this reverence for the weeds and the fact that if I found these same weeds in my yard, I’d try to eradicate them before they ever got a chance to display their full radiance. “Not In My Backyard!”
The same is true for the variety of insects and rodents and snakes and animals that can eat me. I can honestly say that I’m sometimes even moved to tears when I contemplate the seemingly infinite variety of life forms in creation even as humanity annihilates scores of species A DAY!
But, my reverence and my tears are not enough to make me welcome any of these species into “My space” because the discriminatory function of my brain says these expressions of Creation belong in one place and I in another.
Here’s the question. Do you think this is how many of us humans are with one another?
For a long time I’ve been around people who sincerely believe that they care about other groups of humans. But, the moment that “care” inconvenienced them or makes them uncomfortable, their circle of care collapses.
In reflection, I wonder if what makes so many “well meaning” folks show up so hypocritically (myself included) is the unexamined discriminatory brain function that tells me, “Weeds are magnificent models of creation AND I don’t want them in my yard.”
“The only difference between a weed and a flower is judgment.” Wayne Dyer
“The unexamined life is not worth living.” Socrates
“Consider the lilies, how they grow: they toil not, neither do they spin; yet I say unto you, Even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” Jesus