[Please note: This is a repost of a post published in August 2014.
If you’re sick and tired of reading-hearing that this is a repost… why haven’t you told me that?
The comments on old posts may be closed, but comments on new posts are open to you sharing and expressing yourself with me.
Your comment doesn’t have to be relevant to the new post.
I’m not sick and tired yet of doing this repost series. When I do get to that point, I’ll probably keep going for awhile because I tend to keep going even when I’m aware that I want to stop – that’s an old habit which has sometimes served me well (although I can’t think of an anecdotal example atm), and at other times it’s been the wrong decision (I probably have more anecdotal examples of this, but my mind is still rather blank). Sometimes I keep going just to make sure something is the wrong thing to do (especially if other people are involved in whatever it is). Sometimes watching myself do the wrong thing for myself is rather fascinating.
Many of my posts in August 2014 were fragmented like this one (some more than this). I’m kind of in a similar frame of mind at the moment, which is partly why I’m not writing new posts. I kept writing new posts back then because I needed to do that then, but now… well, now it seems more like I need to go over what I did before (in some ways the blurb before the repost is a new post).
Every now and then I wander off the edge and tumble into an abyss – I’ve done this enough times to suspect that what appears to be the abyss ain’t the abyss. Maybe it is and I’m weirdly suited to that place, more so than to what isn’t the abyss. I’ve always been more gifted in the useless skills department…
Fragmented thinking (and tumbling into the abyss) usually occurs when reality as we think we know it suddenly isn’t any longer.
a relationship ending which you thought would last forever, you never saw the end coming and still can’t accept that it has ended because for you it is still going on, but for the other person it ended awhile ago but they’ve only just shared that info with you or maybe you discovered it in a too painful to compute manner. Your version of reality and the other person’s version of reality are not the same – which one is the real version of reality?
That relationship could be romantic, familial, a job, a home, a dream, an ambition… and the ending could be caused by a sudden death, a disaster, a betrayal, a sudden reckoning, confrontation, a change of circumstances, or any number of other things.
We can have relationships with belief systems, and if those fail abruptly (especially when we need them the most), it can leave us flailing in a void looking for something, substance, to cling onto to stop us from falling and flailing – anything will do.
What happens within us during such a ‘failure’ in the regular running and maintenance of our known ‘reality’ is often diagnosed by psycho-logy as ‘cognitive dissonance’.
“Sometimes people hold a core belief that is very strong. When they are presented with evidence that works against that belief, the new evidence cannot be accepted. It would create a feeling that is extremely uncomfortable, called cognitive dissonance. And because it is so important to protect the core belief, they will rationalize, ignore and even deny anything that doesn’t fit in with the core belief.” ― Frantz Fanon
When reality as I know it falls apart for me, I tend to let everything fall apart, curious to see what happens once what previously was reality is replaced by a new reality. During that in between time I float through a space filled with fragments – some fragments disappear, others collect together and merge into the next reality as I know it.
I’ve always been a bit detached from reality.
I don’t have any core beliefs, at least not ones which can’t withstand a shift in known reality. This is partly due to growing up and living with Narcissists whose reality is constantly falling apart, being replaced, being rewritten, etc – the romcom becomes a tragedy, the melodrama becomes a farce, the variety show becomes an execution, the villain becomes a hero and the hero becomes a villain, the news is always fake. If you live in this kind of reality which is constantly changing… you get used to keeping your ‘core beliefs’ simple and ready to move without any warning.
One reality usually holds multiple realities within it… we see the version we want to see, what we want to see can be fickle.
I mentioned my dyslexia in this post – in some realities dyslexia is a learning disability, in others it’s a sign of hidden genius (similarly to Aspergers), some people get cheered for conquering it, others get jeered for having it, it makes us belong, it makes us outcasts, it sells a lot of commercial fixes, in some realities grants are given to study it and come up with theories which aren’t really helpful to those who have it but maybe they are in a different reality, and I sometimes wonder what would be the reality of it if those with dyslexia had pipped those without it to the post of deciding what’s normal and what is not normal in humans.
There’s a character in a TV series I’ve just finished watching who constantly stated that they had an IQ over 100 to define how intelligent they were – why are we so certain that an IQ test can define (real and useful) intelligence, I mean, who defined the intelligence of the people who created the IQ test, and other questions like that. If you look at the state of the world as we think we know it… and if those in charge of decisions affecting it all scored high on an IQ test… why is there still poverty, why is there still starvation, why is there still war, why doesn’t everyone get free healthcare, why do some people have no home while others have more than one – do they really need more than one roof for their one head, why are we still arguing over things which we should have solved by now, and why are we still causing so much havoc and pain and suffering when we should really have learned not to do that by now because no one likes that kind of experience and we’ve all experienced that in one form or another.
We pat ourselves and others on the back for giving to charity, for committing random acts of kindness (mostly for strangers), and then we’re petty and mean to those we know, justifying it as retribution for some slight they maybe didn’t even know they’d done to us. So and so forgot our birthday, ignored us when we wanted attention, so we’re going to be cold and dismissive to them to pay them back… but karma won’t bite us because we contributed to some charity, because we believe we’re good people.
Why do we want the worst of the worst to happen to people we once loved and once wished for the best to happen to them?
Why do we love it when something awful happens to someone we don’t know except through the media…
Are we thinking for ourselves or being brainwashed into thinking our thoughts are ours but they’re not?
Why is being a human being such a constant mess of realities colliding and clashing?
How can we hate ourselves and love ourselves at the same time? Can we really do that? Which one affects our relationship with others the most? Which one dictates our core beliefs and the version of reality we want to see the most?
What if hate and love didn’t exist, weren’t actually real – what if we only think those concepts are real?
I’m nuts, so don’t mind me or my words… these are all just fragments of a fragment.]
“I must be myself. I will not hide my tastes or aversions.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
I can’t recall how long it took me to learn that sharing my views, my tastes and aversions, was an unpopular course of action.
It was a painful process which started when I was a child.
Which caused much confusion in my developing mind.
Which may have even influenced the wiring in my brain to get scrambled,
and resulted in dyslexia.
Sometimes when reading, my eyes see the opposite of what is written.
Sometimes when listening, my ears hear things which have not been said.
I often curse my stupid brain and the errors of its ways.
There are times when people express the opposite of what they think,
when what they say hides what they truly want to say.
Because I am not the only person who has learned in a long and painful way that sharing my views, my tastes and aversions, is an unpopular course of action.
“The smart way to keep people passive and obedient is to strictly limit the spectrum of acceptable opinion.” – Noam Chomsky
When we agree with others, others reward us with acceptance.
We make them feel good about themselves, and they in turn allow us to feel good about ourselves.
When we disagree with others, they reject us.
We make them feel bad about themselves, and they return the favour.
Of course, it’s more complicated than that,
everything is, everyone is.
We strive to simplify the complexity of being, of life.
We create formulas to sum things up,
pop it in a box and tie a bow around it,
adding a label which says – this is this and that is that!
And so say all of us,
don’t you agree,
with the popular opinion.
“Everything popular is wrong.” – Oscar Wilde
There are those who think that agreeing with the popular opinion is an unpopular opinion.
For each popular opinion there is an equal and opposite unpopular opinion,
and each side of the seesaw is popular
with its respective tribe,
its social group,
“…it wasn’t that I was anti-popular culture or anything and I had no ambition to stir things up. I just thought of mainstream culture as lame as hell and a big trick. It was like the unbroken sea of frost that lay outside the window and you had to have awkward footgear to walk with.” – Bob Dylan
Sometimes this hokey pokey song and dance is all about,
what is in,
and sometimes it also about what is out,
as a contrast,
a movement needed to balance the body,
lest it fall over,
from leaning too far,
one way or the other.
Sometimes what is in,
becomes what is out,
and the rules of popular are shaken all about.
“Science, like life, feeds on its own decay. New facts burst old rules; then newly divined conceptions bind old and new together into a reconciling law.”
– William James
At some point after I learned that sharing my views, my tastes and aversions, was an unpopular course of action, I retreated into silence.
But silence was unpopular too.
“To avoid criticism, do nothing, say nothing, be nothing.” ― Elbert Hubbard
And so I devised a new course of action,
a blending of the old and the new,
of lessons learned,
of lessons to be unlearned,
of lessons yet to be learned.
It’s a work in progress…
or at least that is what I call it,
others may call it something else entirely.
This ramble through my thoughts was inspired by – The Daily Prompt: Matters of Taste
When was the last time a movie, a book, or a television show left you cold despite all your friends (and/or all the critics) raving about it? What was it that made you go against the critical consensus?
Hidden within my post is my answer.
A clue – It’s in plain view.
A clue too – 143 minutes minutes of my life which I wish I could get back to waste on something else. Usually when I watch a film which leaves me cold, I stop watching, but for some reason I stuck it out, perhaps because I hoped to see why it was popular. Sometimes hope is just a coping mechanism for pain which is being ignored (this is a hint).
My dyslexia has fun altering the title to reflect my opinion of it. I rarely share those permutations. Not every opinion needs to be shared… or maybe it does. I haven’t figured that out yet.