Sunday, May 30, 2010

Tender Hearts - Wider Perspective

I was recently listening to NPR (if you don't tune into that channel every once in a while, you may want to try it) and heard an interview with an author who had written a book about his grandson who was autistic. The comment which stuck with me was the recounting of an exchange between the author and his grandson. The author asked the autistic child if he thought he was different from the other children and the child responded yes. When asked how, his response was that he felt he was kinder than most other kids. The author went on to explain that his grandson didn't understand why so many kids were mean, not just to him but to each other as well. The author went on to describe this trait as that of having a tender heart.

For me, I always interpreted a lack of meanness, or in my viewpoint, a tolerance of others, as a result of a wider perspective. I guess I considered it more a mental construct than an emotional one as I viewed emotion in the context of sometimes blinding a person to the logical or rational.

Duly humbled, let me just say this. Regardless of the source, whether you practice random acts of kindness out of an emotional empathy or because you have reasoned that doing good adds to the positive energy slate and doing bad the negative, or just because you are aware of all those less fortunate than yourself and, in thankfulness that you have advantages, you choose to share them with those less fortunate, isn't the world better for it?

Really, don't we need to strive towards treating all people, not just those that agree with us or share our perspectives, as we want to be treated? I am not a Beatles fanatic like some of my age group, but what if they were right when they said that (and I may be paraphrasing here), in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you made. If we are graded at the pearly gates on just that criteria, how would you fare?


  1. Just a thought

    A person's faith, belief, religion, whatever you want to call it, allows society (civilization) to have a reason to do the right thing because of the FEAR of the afterlife. Honestly though, if the only reason you do something good is because of that FEAR, then really was it a good deed?

    You may be asking yourself, whats my belief? Here you go (KARMA, what goes around comes around. Just do the right thing because its the right thing, not because of the unknown. Maybe its a balance of energy, or something that is bigger then what we can understand at this time. (but to insist your faith is right and another person's opinion (faith)is wrong, that to me is insane) Hell, the only way to prove your faith or someone else's is right is to die. Best scam out there :)

    So then, how did we get here (or how was everything created")? Some say the Big Bang. Kinda works, but something still caused or created it. Others, go with there Faith and what it says. Goes back to balance (maybe something call it GOD created this universe or even multiple universes, just to see what happens (like a science experiment).

    If you go with faith, fine, i have no problems with it. But, you then get the extremists that use it as a reason to attack other faiths. Whats wrong with just waking up, go to work, do the right thing, and have time to enjoy your life without worring about all the BS.

    Hey, maybe, religion was created back when civilization began in order to control chaos?? Ironically enough, the most recent wars seems to be over some form of one faith vs another.

    Lastly, i have no fear of dying, even if GOD exist. I living my life for myself and my family. As long as i continue to do what is right then what it is it is. To me, religion is like gambling, your making a bet and hoping that by believing in your faith, then you will win your bet (go to Heaven, get your virgins,whatever your faith says) :)

    Have a good Weekend

    GO FLYERS and PHILLIES!!!!!!

  2. Tom,

    I think that you need to give credit for part of your belief system to your parents. While we may not agree with all the particulars of their faith, they LIVED their faith and were a wonderful example to us, their children.

    I am fine with your base of "doing the right thing" although I caution you that it is not as easy as is sounds. Doing the right thing can include saying nothing if you can't say something positive, paying attention to your wife or kids even when the Flyers are on, helping people you don't particlarly like or agree with, not just those in your own family. I think there is what I call a tribal perpsective that has gained ground in the world that manifests itself in things like religion (as you mention). We help those that are like us but use religion or ethnicity or nationality, etc to justify our mistreatment of those unlike us.

  3. The way Mom and Dad lived would have been the same even if they had no religion. The religion was like a catalyst or something that helped them (like a booster too) to understand the unknown. Again, i believe when people cant understand something they need to make something up or believe in some thing (faith of whatever) so they can live their life in some sort of peace.

    I'm not against what people believe in. If they are happy I'm happy. I get upset and irritated to say the least when their beliefs affect us (ill state 2 examples)(extremist cause violence war, not only Islam but Roman Catholics did it also thousands of years ago (all religions do). But also when these religious organization have the ability to swing an election one way or another, then YES there is an issue. Mom and Dad never pushed anything upon any of us (siblings, friends, etc) those who cant understand another opinion are the ones to be scared of. Not sure if u noticed, but the small minorities (activists) have more power (media influence who would put a worm on the cover of a newspaper if it would make that paper sell (top story)then the majority.

    Unfortunately, i dont think just picking the weed will resolve the issue (it will grow back) need to get to root of the issue, and until done nothing that we will do will mean SHIT.

    Hell, not sure if i stated this before or not, but where did this list of the bad 7 words come from? Our founding fathers talked worse then drunken sailors, but now because of the strong hold (influence) that religion has over our government we allow things to slowly change.

    Church and State Separate??? I think not!!! Like they always say, follow the money and you will find the truth!

    Also, look back around 1100-1200 BC the pyramid or Egyptian civilization had a religion similar to the Roman Catholic. Again im not saying there isn't a GOD im just saying the corporate religious non-profit above law faiths are corrupt and are one big Scam. If you want to go to the Bible doesn't it say you will find GOD under the stone you lift or the ground you dig, he is everywhere.

    And the deadly since never went into the bible till i believe it was pope Gregory the great in either 590 AD or 1290 AD (one was the deadly sins, the other year was the whole priest cant marry phenomenon) Before this they had mistresses but someone in the Roman Catholic Church got Smart. If the priests have people to leave their assets to then the catholic church cant profit. But, if you say u must be celibate then anything you own goes to them, hence the Roman Catholic Church is the largest land owner in the world.