A Very Bad Choice

A very bad Choice
[thoughts from   ~burning woman~  ]

Without thinking much about it, it seems that in my mind I’ve taken this time, this summer, as a time of reflection. That exercise has caused me to come face-to-face with continuing aspects of my thinking, and consequently expressing, that I often literally despise. I chose, because it is always the easiest path, to engage aspects of “this world” that I know I should have been done with long ago.

Do I really want to engage the various political, economic and even religious aspects of the so-called pandemic? No, I do not.

Do I really want to engage the many unsavory aspects of America’s president and join the choruses that chant his demise? No, I do not.

Do I want to belabour the point of those “working” Canadians who choose not to return to work because they are getting a temporary COVOD-19 relief from their government and it’s beach season? No, I do not.

Do I want to carry the heavy personal burden regarding victims of war, refugees, and the deaths by famine continuing to plague this world? No, I do not.

Do I want to live with visions of genocide and the plight of migrant workers in my mind? No, I do not. 

There are many other such questions to which I could also reply, No, I do not, and I base this on my personal inability to do anything about the things brought to my mind by the media, acquaintances, other bloggers, friends, even clients.

If you demonstrate that you are a conscientious person, those around you will want to engage you; will want to know how you respond to the questions that plague us all.

What if I have developed a real conscience? What if I hold to myself that being a compassionate person is the highest any sentient can ever hope to achieve? What if it is more than a belief; what if it is demonstrated to me in both, positive and negative ways, simply by the way I respond to a query, to a crisis; how I engage it; what I’m willing (or not) to invest of myself in these? What if they are brought to my attention but remain beyond my reach to intervene?

I haven’t had much to say lately. Some off the cuff remarks here and there about man’s ongoing, repetitive follies and their drastic consequences, but of substance? None, nothing. When I was seriously religious, these dog days of summer were called the dark night of the soul. I think they should more appropriately be thought of as the dark days of the mind.

I have not been “religious” for some decades now, and I certainly do not miss that aspect of my life… except for the teachings that came with it, that uncomfortable aspect of religion that most faith cling-ons as a general rule refuse to consider.

In Christianity there is a central teaching called “the gospel” found, not surprisingly, in the synoptic gospels purporting to tell the story of Jesus’ ministry in Galilee, in which he lays out the personal costs that will always be demanded of those who chose to walk that particular path.

Two things I know now. One, I left Christianity, not because it was difficult but because it was impossible to not be in it except as a complete hypocrite. Two: when I encountered “the Teachers” it became clear to me as they expounded on how to live a human life that much of what they presented me with I already knew because, again not surprisingly, I had, read, studied and learned much of it from the biblical gospels.

I was reminded that the foundation of a human life is to become (you must become before you can be) good, kind, humble, a peace maker without exception, patient, gentle, inclusive and of course, compassionate. These were not “extras” you had the option to practice after you were baptized, after you voluntarily and with a clear mind, literally gave your life to Jesus. The proof that  you lived thus would be stamped on your admittance ticket. If they were not, profess away, it would avail nothing. 

Something terrible has befallen man in these last days, something unthinkable. The creature has chosen to fall from grace, not the grace of discipleship to a god, but the grace that accompanies living the life of a real human. Our world is sick; our civilization is imploding; our religions are compromised and corrupt beyond any hope of redemption – all of them, no exception; our moral values have plummeted into the negative wherein vices are more often than not accounted as virtues.

Currently our world is being driven to the edge of its abyss by greed, felony, perversion of justice, lies stacked upon lies, reviling and mocking, and finally murder; mass murder. Life holds no sanctity because the morality that, even if weakly, supported our social institutions some years back, instead of being built upon, was smashed down with utter abandon, as if ridding society of all moral constraint was the guarantee that society would improve.

Well, don’t take my word for it when I say that people, as a collective, have made a very bad choice. Just look around, and do a little reading, a little studying.

I close by saying that I have never been so disappointed, dispirited and disgusted by myself, first and foremost, and by my fellow earth walkers as I am during this time of reflection.

 

29 thoughts on “A Very Bad Choice

  1. Sha'Tara Post author

    Your email copy may have a serious missing word, and quote: “I left Christianity, not because it was difficult but because it was impossible to not be in it as a complete hypocrite.”
    This should read, and quote: “I left Christianity, not because it was difficult but because it was impossible to not be in it EXCEPT as a complete hypocrite.”

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Incisive observations. Those sort of things we can deal with, we have smarts and technology. But what I am on about these days is the palpable moral degradation that is corrupting the entire species. There was a time when small groups could escape from the corruption; could go back to the land, even the wilderness, and start anew, with strong guidance for they young from those who had experienced and escaped the corruption. Now there is no place to run. We can only turn within, look at what resources we have as individuals and bring that to bear as a bulwark against the decadence that is dragging the world to death, even if it isn’t physical death. The death of the spirit within is what we should have the wisdom to fear and counteract. Or so it seems obvious to me.

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      1. George F.

        that is dragging the world to death,…I have embraced this inevitability and made peace with it. It’s over, homie. Turns out the earth was just another disposable commodity. Seems there’s infinite inventory. Thus. the story of the Ark, metaphorical spaceship, is about to repeat.

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    2. Sha'Tara Post author

      Thanks George. Your short comment encompasses ages of our history! Noah’s ark was, in all likelihood, a spaceship, although I have read somewhere that its descriptions also fit a submarine. I was always puzzled at how the writer would have explained the health conditions and the food situation(!) on an actual floating wooden boat. I thought, obviously that writer knows nothing about keeping animals in a barn during long periods of bad weather for example. But either a spaceship or a submarine, not with actual live animals but cells from which a large number of animals could be re-cloned and returned to the earth. And of course the flood, which is well documented, was the result of relatively sudden climate change. 2+2 = 4!

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      1. Sha'Tara Post author

        Well George, I commented on your comment but WPress advised me that they “lost” my comment and I should do another while the AI continues to look for it… I opted for a chuckle instead of frustration. I’ll try again when I get to an actual computer- this cell phone blogging is too slow.

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      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        Ah, WP didn’t find my comment, but I did, in the cell’s backup system. So I’m copying: In this case the ark could be a depopulated earth ruled by a small autocratic technocracy managed in turn by the likes of a Bill and Melinda Gates of Hell Foundation. I’m keeping in mind that I’ve been “assured” that no Earthian of the Homo Sapiens variety woul ever be able to physically escape this prison planet alive due to a quarantine being maintained around this solar system. The quarantine will be lifted when HS is practically extinct and no longer a threat to the rest of the region, i.e., galaxy. As far as our neighbors are concerned Earthians are incorrigible recidivists, never to be trusted.

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Your comment made me smile, Akhila. It’s actually not a bad place to be, being aware of one’s mental condition through introspection. I’ve literally spent my life trying to make myself into someone better than what I saw myself as. That process is ongoing and yes, frustrating at times because of what appears to me to be a lack of progress due to a lack of commitment on my part. Too scatter-brained!

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  2. franklparker

    A thoughtful post, Sha, if a little despairing – and given the present circumstances that’s understandable.
    For me there are a couple of things that seem obvious:
    1. All our problems arise because someone (or some group) believes, erroneously, that they are entitled to (a share of) what someone else (or some other group) has.
    2. Nothing of use to humankind exists without human energy having been expended upon it.
    It is easy to overlook the second of these in a time of IT and automation but it is undeniable that however abundant the resources available in any place or time, someone has to harvest them or dig them out of the ground, after which they mostly need something doing to them to render them useful.
    It follows from 2 that anyone consuming the basic necessities of life without expending the equivalent amount of human energy as that required to gather and modify the raw materials used in their production does so as a consequence of the rest of the population producing a surplus.
    It should be up to those producing any surplus to determine how that surplus is distributed. In a democracy, in theory, that determination is made via political activity and informed voting. In practice, in all jurisdictions, there are those who disrupt the process because of 1.
    Expanding these desiderata requires a longer essay which I may embark upon one day soon!

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Thank you, Frank. I sincerely hope you do share your expanded thoughts on this troubling (to me) global and personal condition. Thank you again.

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Agreement is good, Anonymous. Thanks for commenting and if you have additional thoughts on this topic, feel free to express them here.

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  3. Phil Huston

    As a wise friend of mine used to say “Shit be all kinds a fucked up an shit.” When asked what one could do about it the reply was “Cain’t do shit. Don’t worry about it.” Much as the beloved Mr. Natural used to say. All we can do is light up our little chunks of the universe. According to Mother Teresa who shames us all, “if we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” The simplicity of the gospel is that we are put here to heal each other, as by the example given. No more or less. Strange that we as a race of humans can’t manage even that simple task.

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Beautiful and insightful comment, Phil, helpful to ponder upon as I chase my particular thought pattern here these days. Thank you!

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  4. jim-

    Ive tried to read this 5 times and keep getting interrupted. In what way is not the world improving? Extreme poverty is way down as well as infant mortality and civil rights is actually better than ever.
    The point you may need to address is that without these oppositions to your view and the occasional down tics, we (collectively) would be bored out of our minds.
    Jesus said love your enemy, bless them that curse you—this is the type of love he was referring, a deep appreciation for those that are different , hateful, and mean spirited, because without them life would be static and as equally miserable. Appreciate them. It always turns around. And besides, it is better to go out with a bang than a whimper.

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      I’ll reply, first with a quote: ““I believe we are a species with amnesia, I think we have forgotten our roots and our origins. I think we are quite lost in many ways. And we live in a society that invests huge amounts of money and vast quantities of energy in ensuring that we all stay lost. A society that invests in creating unconsciousness, which invests in keeping people asleep so that we are just passive consumers of products and not really asking any of the questions.” ~ Graham Hancock
      Seems to me your counter is from looking at your country; my “point” encircled the globe. But even so, I know that “human rights” in America are currently plummeting. BLM and other protest groups aren’t reactions to things getting better.
      Quote from your comment: “Jesus said love your enemy, bless them that curse you—this is the type of love he was referring, a deep appreciation for those that are different , hateful, and mean spirited, because without them life would be static and as equally miserable.”
      I’m sorry but I call that seriously flawed (and borderline sick) exegesis. He wasn’t talking about any sort of “appreciation” of one’s persecutors but as a way to call them into the path of righteousness – and that’s in context.
      Do you actually hold to the notion that if we conquered evil on planet earth life would become intolerably boring? At least before we get to the boring stage, don’t you think we should give it a try? One year without any of the gross “sins” I mention in my essay? One year to discover that it is possible to live a full and fulfilled life without exploiting, oppressing, causing fear, stress or giving rise to feelings of revulsion and hatred, or murdering innocents whose only crime is sitting on natural resources we happen to want for ourselves?
      No Jim, I cannot agree with you. This society is not getting better. Atheism hasn’t proved itself any better at controlling or improving man’s nature than any religion. Time to stop reasoning like imperialistic capitalists and face the music. Time to think of a better way and put it in practice.

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      1. jim-

        What do you think we have been doing? Thats all we do is put better ways into practice.
        Boredom is the biggest problem in the universe. Waves and troughs, everything needs polarity. Without lows, how could you ever know highs? And if it all comes tumbling down, so what would happen? Nothing actually, truth be told. Everything is exactly as it was a second before.

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      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        Quote: “Thats all we do is put better ways into practice.” Either that’s tongue in cheek, or I completely fail to comprehend. We certainly put “new” ways into practice, and your Oppenheimer quote shows that, but seldom better. It’s not that we should not “play” with stuff, it’s just that the reason used is so limited, short-sighted, unthinking in fact. Again, the Oppenheimer quote. How much of the stuff used to create this Earthian civilization do we as people need?
        Question: How do you know that “boredom” is the biggest problem in the universe? Have you gone out there and experienced it?
        A fundamental question in my received Teaching was whether or not life in duality needed the pain-filled side to function? Did life demand predatory death to balance itself? The answer was a categorical “No!” In fact, predation is anathema to life, hence the basic problems experienced on Earth. You do not need fear, loss, terror, the inflicting of disease or death upon healthy individuals in order to have balance. *I must be blunt here and say that it is dangerously stupid to believe that and consequently promote such a falsehood. Only predators who enjoy hunting, stalking and killing; who enjoy inflicting pain particularly upon those who cannot defend themselves, support this concept. A predator takes and gives nothing back if it can help it. Man is the worst predator on this world and does all in his power to validate his choice, thus surrounding himself with unjustifiable violence. Predation, i.e., established violence, i.e., oppression and murder is your number one problem in the universe – and yes, it is universal – not boredom.

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  5. Hyperion

    Well said. All of it. All over the world in every culture, good people I know say the same, feel the same. The boundaries of sanity and common decency have been pushed far out of view. We keep expecting someone else to do some kind and virtuous thing to set it all back on course and then we realize, that’s how religions get started. Here we go again.

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      Here we go again, indeed. We hear of someone doing good, or there’s a go fund me effort going on and what was an individual choice begins to coalesce into a group… and that is, however you shake it, a form of religion. The focus turns from the ‘charity’ to promoting and funding the ‘group’ and yes, here we go again… and again… and again. What is called for at this stage of our game is self empowerment. A kind of pay-it-forward sort of deal, mano a mano, so to speak. If I want to live in a good world, I have to FORCE MYSELF to live as a good person, while leaving the definition of the term ‘good’ to the circumstances that I encounter. I’m reminded of the movie, “The Good Lie” with Reese Witherspoon.
      We need, well, “I” need, to decide day by day what it means to me to express as a morally good person and how to eschew quietly but firmly interaction with a world I now have so little in common with. That calls for much more that self empowerment. It calls for humility. How easy it is to think of oneself as superior when choosing the straight and narrow over the broad and wide of a society in complete disarray! Disagreement and dissent are fine but wisdom says, remember what it leads to! All I need do is remember my history of the Reformation days. So much hubris, from all sides, that led to so much horror, war crimes, dispossession, torture and mass murder – all in the name of righteousness.

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      1. Hyperion

        I’m Grokking you good Sha’Tara. I’ve had a few Douglas Adams moments at the end of the universe lately and seen the wisdom in the number 42. (I’m assuming that you read The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Universe and Stranger in a Strange Land.) I feel a lot of letting go taking place within me. Compassion, humility, acts of kindness, appreciation of the arts and investing energy in the understanding of the life of plants as well as my dirty secrets found in the interaction of sub atomic particles keep me busy in my waking hours. I’ve given up buffoonery. It just takes too much energy these days to maintain high levels of ignorance and offense. I do hear you Sha’Tara, I do listen, contemplate, incorporate, and rearrange my last two brain cells as best I can. I’m ready for America to become a one party anti-republic nation and let them toss us headlong into the reformation once again. We have worked hard for our demise and we won’t be denied. So, why express regret when we get precisely what we asked for. (Of course, there are the resisters of doom, but we exist in the fringes of the normal distribution of senseless acts) I wish you peace, contentment, and a grand arrival at your next destination in your journey across time and space.

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      2. Sha'Tara Post author

        Huh Daniel… some comments stand on their own and are OK with a simple “Like!” and some comments demand a response. Took me a while to get to this one of yours, but here I am…😊
        Yes, some of us are “the resisters of doom” and won’t be silenced, intimidated, bought out or shamed out. Like yourself (from what I’ve gathered of your bits of life history, comments and general observations) I’ve spent a great deal of serious time in serious contemplation of “the meaning of life” as it pertains to me. Long ago I realized that realizing the meaning of life can only apply to the self. To think that what I see as the meaning of life can apply to another is the ultimate of hubris. “Compassion, humility, acts of kindness,” and etc…. same here. Oh, I will still speak against, expose and “fight” against collective ignorance and organized corruption wherever I encounter it, wherever it challenges my integrity, but I no longer hold any illusion about changing the world! I did think I could do that once, when notoriety began to smile at me and I realized the better part of valour was to tell her to take a hike – she had plenty of takers. I just mentioned integrity: that’s now a very important aspect of my “public” image. In the midst of so much exposed and unrepentant corruption from the highest to the lowest, integrity suddenly carries a lot of weight by standing out. It’s good to see you choosing the good life over… the “good” life society still believes it can have if it believes in its authorities, even when that belief demands living in fear. I had to look up that number 42. It’s downright famous! And yes, I have read “Stranger…” of course, and “The Hitchhiker’s Guide…” but have to admit Douglas Adams never did it for me. I always felt there was something lacking in his stories… depth maybe? Shallow philosophy? I even abandoned reading Dirk Gently and it isn’t like me to quit reading a book once I’ve gotten into it. Whatever. Now into Robert Reed. We’ll see. Holiday weekend here, going out kayaking again tomorrow. The “mighty Fraser” is finally dropping and becoming more navigable by the day. Introducing a kayaking friend to that roiling surface tomorrow… I’m a little bit nervous – she doesn’t know much about river currents. Oh well, no one was there when I first learned to handle the currents and her kayak is better by far than my very first one which was a rudderless, all-purpose 11 foot Necky. Now I ply the river, up and down, in a slim 15 foot Wilderness Focus “sea” kayak, my 4th year in this one. …Blah, blah, blah, huh?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Hyperion

        Hi Sha’Tara, you are right about Douglas Adams. They are pure satire and nonsense but the appeal becomes a great metaphor for our times where life is satire and our herd mentality nonsense versus the more thoughtful seeking of truth which requires acknowledging the extremes of our current era. I do see a lot of parallels in the Dune Series and also the Hyperion Cantos. Kayaking is the real answer to breaking away from the grip of society and with a friend, sharing the exhilaration of challenge and adventure where you have none of the ills of society to contemplate. I wish you a good weekend and the heady taste of freedom with nature.

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  6. wolfess

    Back in a past life when I was a ‘born-again christian’ I gave birth to a ‘perfect’ baby boy … he had all of his fingers and all of his toes and he was seriously retarded. The most ‘wonderful, outstanding’ church I attended at that time decided they should ‘create’ a very young ‘youth choir’ for 3 to 6-year-olds … Jonathon was 5 at the time so I asked if he could join that wonderful choir — TPTB were only too happy to accept him! The first time he and his peers got to sing in front of the congregation I was more than proud and thrilled; and while he didn’t really sing any words (like many of his fellow choir members) neither did he sing off-key (unlike many of the children standing around him)! Mere days later all 3 pastors [oh my!] came to tell us that ‘members of the congregation’ were “appalled by his retarded presence” in front of the church and until he could “sing better” he would not be allowed to join his choir members in front of the congregation. Being the devout ‘christian’ that I was i accepted their words with grace and equanimity and chose to ask their god for peace and understanding. That worked until one Sunday morning that I got out of sunday school late and went upstairs to face Jonathon being held with his arms in back of him sobbing because he couldn’t join his ‘brothers and sisters’ in front of the congregation. I took him and went home — to pray for wisdom — and then wrote a kind, ‘christian’ letter that explained how Jesus said to “suffer the little children to come unto him, and forbid them not” and how if anyone caused one of them to falter “it would be better that a millstone be tied around their neck.” I showed it to Mike after I had typed it and he said to put “cc:atty” at the bottom. I handed the letter out that Wednesday at choir practice … the next morning the head pastor CALLED MIKE to ask if they could meet with him to discuss MY LETTER! Mike told him he would only meet with them if l was included, so Friday morning all. 3. pastors. came to our house to ‘talk’. Pastor Bonds started by saying THEY DIDN’T MEAN TO DISCRIMINATE AGAINST JONATHON! I found that rather odd considering I had said NOTHING about discrimination in my letter … but … by putting ‘cc:atty’ at the bottom of my letter they KNEW that was EXACTLY WHAT THEY HAD DONE! So we told them the only way they could end this situation was to allow Jonathon to join his peers every time they sang. He got to sing in front of the congregation one more time and then they disbanded the choir … Jonathon was so repulsive to them that they chose to disband his choir rather than let him continue singing to the congregation!*

    *The first child Pastor Bond’s daughter gave birth to had Down’s Syndrome — the Goddess has an amazing sense of humor! 🤗😈

    It is my considered opinion that ‘their’ god is going to ‘rapture’ we heathens because god realizes ‘his’ followers have utterly failed to convince us we should accept his son as our savior!

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    1. Sha'Tara Post author

      A true bunch of sick bastards in that church. Thankfully for them they didn’t have to deal with someone like me, as I would have been circa that time: the would have gotten a subpoena, not just a letter and a meeting. Ah well, hypocrisy is the Church’s number one virtue. If God, as I know him, wasn’t already the number one enemy of mankind, I’d have to say that his followers are as far as being any kind of “example” to the world around them. This is not an inclusive observation, there are always exceptions to the rule but as always they prove the rule.

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      1. wolfess

        “… the would have gotten a subpoena, not just a letter and a meeting.”
        And why weren’t you in Gering when I needed you??? 🤗😈🤔

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