Personal Reflection” Gerald had a much different way of looking at things. In this fictional letter from Karl to his friend George, we see an example of this as it relates to our survival mindset or attitude.
Maybe people who want to survive and try to prepare for bad times get a bad rap, don’t you think? People I know who call themselves survivalists are of all types and are good people. Why are we so often misunderstood, laughed at, or even hated?
I have a theory, but I can’t prove it. Maybe some of us have caught on, tapped into reality, and those who wish to control us don’t like that. While they are stashing their money in Swiss bank accounts and preparing to go to Belize or some place, they tell us to keep a positive attitude and not to panic people with our negative thinking. When cattle are being taken to the slaughter house, they want them to keep calm until they are inside and the door is closed behind them.
Let me tell you about a session we had last night, starting with Helga and myself, then with others joining in. Helga said she believed that what you think goes out to other people and even to animals. She said Saint Francis preached to the birds and other wild creatures. He said they were not afraid of him because they could sense he loved them.
Helga said she feels hatred in people, sometimes a group of people, maybe after some story of injustice has been broadcast, for instance. But she feels love too.
This brought a comment from our friend Paula, who is familiar with legends and lore. She said the Hawaiians have a legend about the bridge of hate. They say if you hate someone, like another group of people, that evil can cross that bridge and come to you. I hope I am getting this right. But love dispels this path, so that evil can’t reach you. This is how I remember it. This led to the idea of your emotions, or beliefs, being assets or liabilities in survival.
Paula’s husband collects Army manuals. He said one on escape and evasion tells you that when you are hiding and those searching for you get near, to blank out your mind, so they can’t sense your presence. People thought that sounded fantastic, but then someone remembered playing hide and seek at night. He hid in some shrubs next to the house and a boy looking for him walked right on by, then stopped and stared right at him through the bushes. The kid told him he could feel him in there even though he couldn’t see him.
Every one in our group of six people had a story along this line. One man said he was making a delivery in the part of town, Cincinnati, where people said you wouldn’t want to run out of gas–pretty rough. He stopped at an intersection where a young black boy was acting as a school crossing guard, with his white belt and stop sign. As this man watched the boy he began to think, “What a good boy he is, so serious about his duty, and so dignified.”
The boy had an open box of cookies, ginger snaps. He turned to look at the man and their eyes met. He walked over to the car and held out the box. “Have one,” he said. There was a good feeling between two people who had never met before.
All of us felt there were people that it is impossible to love. What about the unlovable in our midst, and there really are some.
I remembered reading Arthur Schopenhauer when I was young. Only philosopher I could really dig. Not a happy man by a long shot, and no lover of humanity for certain. He addressed this problem of loving people by trying to find something that linked all people, all of humanity.
You know what it was, G.? Arthur said we all suffer. That is the link. If you can’t find a reason to love people, you can pity them because they suffer.
What do you think? Will we survive better if we send out love and compassion, or hatred and fear?