A couple of days ago I got some questions about what I was reading and hesitated in answering. It’s this hesitation that highlighted, to me, a need to question. And so I’ve been pondering.
The greatest compliments I receive are ones telling me I’m “grounded”. That’s what I want out of my life. A grounding and connection to the actual, honest to goodness, world we live in. Five minutes listening to the radio and I’m left baffled by the incongruent world they present. It’s like a constructed alter-world has been decided upon and I missed the meeting. So, back it goes to the classical music channel.
There is so much nuance in a story. Nuance that people have no patience for anymore. We want boxes, black and white, us and them. We want your ‘bottom line’ so we can decide if you’re worthy of an investment of our time or if you’re just another throw away human. “I’m writing to tell you how appalled I am in your position regarding (fill in the blank) and I am now unfollowing you”. Another note to signal their virtuous position. So “woke” that room is made for all except any waft of opinion even slightly divergent. Even a genuine question or an extension of room to understand the other side is seen as deplorable.
This is a tricky post to write because I fear it will just garner more comments of division. Can we try to leave politics out of this and sift out divisions to look for commonalities? I can think differently than you and still be a viable human being, ya’ know?
I grew up in Canada. I see what’s happening here with runaway liberalism and PC culture. All of our news is heavily leaning in those directions. I don’t fall anywhere on anyone’s bullshit left or right meter, but I want my conditioning broken down. I want to find the real me under the snowdrifts of imposed teachings and social constructs. Isn’t that what life is for?
Tell me what you think. I will listen. And then be ok with me saying “I disagree”. Isn’t that what life is about? Shouldn’t we have the authentic self confidence to have a position without finding a dissenting voice as threatening to our world order?
So, what does this have to do with reading? Everything. If I tell you the books I’m reading, I will get 50% of the people telling me I’m a miserable human being for even considering such garbage and the other half of people cheering me on.
Let’s not do that. We don’t have to do that. I read books from all perspectives, different from my own even. I try to read a book a week, that seems to fit with my life. Often, I have more than one book on the go. Right now I’m reading three: “Fairweather Eden – life in Britain half a million years ago as revealed by the excavations at Boxgrove”, “The Ministry of Truth – the biography of George Orwell”, and the “Northern Cookbook” which is an old Government of Canada cookbook produced with the assistance of Indigenous Canadians sharing their knowledge and traditions. I also read from the books of stoics every day.
What else am I reading? As much as I can stuff into my curious brain. I have joined Robb Wolf’s @dasrobbwolf “Healthy Rebellion” website. In this age of oppression by the interweb gods, it’s a factual reality that truth and free speech must be fought for and found outside of their biased filters. Have you even tried to google anything health related lately? If I didn’t know the names of alternative health websites, I would never even know they exist. Thank you, Robb for your consistent vision and leadership in the realm of human health and, maybe more importantly, your ability and insistence to look at things holistically, with consideration and understanding of the big picture. You’re a good egg and we are all lucky to have you helping us to live better lives for ourselves and our families and, now, to have a place to do so freely and respectfully.
Another thing I’ve been reading is a newspaper we got a trial subscription to, “The Epoch Times”. I really wasn’t sure what their tagline of ‘reporting the things others won’t’ meant. That could go either way and I was worried it was some radical publication full of more hate and intolerance. So, my husband and I have been pleasantly surprised by the content so far. We read the articles, discuss, read, and discuss.
They really do write about things our PC news won’t even discuss and then some. From articles on great works of art, stoicism, porn addiction, and viewpoints outside of the tolerance of the mainstream media, delivered with care and thought, not antagonism. We’ve found it all insightful and refreshing.
But that’s our opinion. Maybe you’d hate it. And that’s ok, too.
I’ve had a patient and dedicated fellow helping me with a blog. My time here is coming to an end. What we lose in keeping stories short is the nuance that, to me, holds the truth. I don’t want to be an agent of division. I just want to share the stories that I’ve been given, hoping there may be something in them that brings you even a smidgen of peace or joy or even just pause to question.
I don’t know. Maybe stories are just a new way to see something outside of our world view. I know that’s what I’m always stretching to do. Conformity and complacency are dirty bedfellows. It seems to me that in today’s world, being a good, obliging citizen, towing the party line, is very costly indeed.
All I got is this one mind and body and I will feed them both what I decide for myself.