Wednesday, March 07, 2007

T-Shirt #2.8.b

I’m big on paradigms these days. I’ve come to realize that paradigms reveal themselves in behavior and when you blindly and unthinkingly accept things the way they are you do a great disservice to yourself and the world around you. You might even behave in a way that is counter to what your spirit demands of you. For instance, operating from a paradigm of finding the lowest price, no matter what, might cause you to support a business that exploits children in India, poisons groundwater in Peru, or enslaves young women in China so that the price you pay at the checkout is a few cents cheaper than the store down the street – the store which pays its employees an adequate wage and gives them time to be with their families. I believe it pays to know as much as is possible about your world because when you are armed with knowledge, you have a better chance of behaving so that you’ll have no regrets. And here’s something I’m pretty sure of: cars are not going to be a part of the future - not like we know it now – and I’m pretty sure most folks at some gut level know this too.

I realized long ago that you don’t really belong to me. Yes, you are ‘my’ child and I love you dearly, but you belong to the world, not to me. I’m just cosmically entrusted to provide safekeeping and guidance and preparation until you fly away to your future, a place where energy will never again be cheap, where cars will be scarce, and where all social, religious, and political institutions are certain to be quite different than they are now. It’s odd for me to realize that my very liberal view about religion, drugs, rock & roll or my gay sexual orientation will cause less of a conflict to your ultra-religious, very conservative relatives than my reticence to allow you easy access to car-culture, but such is the power of a paradigm.

1 comment:

Curt said...

Jeez, that's really powerful. I am reminded of one of Socrates' statements at his famous trial. For the charges of corrupting the youth of Athens (through teaching people to think for themselves); denying the gods (through teaching people to think for themselves); and creating false gods (through teaching people to think for themselves), Socrates was given the choice of: death, or silent exile to another city. He is supposed to have answered:

Ό δε ανεξεταστος βίος ου βιόυτος ανθροπό.

The unexamined life is not worth living.

The ultimate man of his word, if you ask me.