Last night was the 2013 MLB All-Star game. Ah, America’s past time! Who doesn’t love a good baseball game? And what better way to open up America’s game then with a heartfelt rendition of ‘God Bless America’?
And…wait, a minute. Who is this guy coming out to sing God Bless AMERICA?
Worship power, you will end up feeling weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to numb you to your own fear. Worship your intellect, being seen as smart, you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out. But the insidious thing about these forms of worship is not that they’re evil or sinful, it’s that they’re unconscious. They are default settings.
They’re the kind of worship you just gradually slip into, day after day, getting more and more selective about what you see and how you measure value without ever being fully aware that that’s what you’re doing.
And the so-called real world will not discourage you from operating on your default settings, because the so-called real world of men and money and power hums merrily along in a pool of fear and anger and frustration and craving and worship of self. Our own present culture has harnessed these forces in ways that have yielded extraordinary wealth and comfort and personal freedom. The freedom all to be lords of our tiny skull-sized kingdoms, alone at the centre of all creation. This kind of freedom has much to recommend it. But of course there are all different kinds of freedom, and the kind that is most precious you will not hear much talk about much in the great outside world of wanting and achieving…. The really important kind of freedom involves attention and awareness and discipline, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them over and over in myriad petty, unsexy ways every day.
That is real freedom. That is being educated, and understanding how to think. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the rat race, the constant gnawing sense of having had, and lost, some infinite thing.
“The tragedy of life does not lie in not reaching your goals, the tragedy lies in that having any goals to reach. It isn’t a calamity to die with dreams unfilled, but it is a calamity not to dream. It’s not a disaster to be unable to capture your ideals, but it is a disaster to have no ideals to capture. It is not a disgrace not to reach the stars, but it is a disgrace to have no stars to reach.”—Dr. Benjamin Mays
This morning, I caught a clip of a recent episode of Good Morning America that offered good food for thought. The topic was ‘Dating Down: Would you date a man that makes less than you’? and of course with ‘No Scrubs’ being one of TLC’s biggest hits, they had Chilli on as a guest.
Chilli’s stance was that it’s hard for her to ‘date down’ because she loves to be treated like a princess:
I’m very picky, I guess you want to call it that. Here’s my issue with ‘dating down’ – it sounds bad, it makes us seem shallow — the problem with dating down[…]I think that for a female, no matter how much money you make or not, every woman wants to feel like a princess, you know. I don’t look for a guy to pay my bills, I can pay my own bills. I can do a lot of things for myself. Thank God I’ve been blessed. But I would love to go on a date with a guy and he pays for it or we go on a trip together and — if I have to pay half then I need to go on that trip with my girlfriend, not a dude. I’m just saying.
And I totally understand where she is coming from. We all have had fantasies of being whisked away to an exotic island with the man of our dreams, but I have to say this:
It is funny a nation of approximately 2.8 million can produce the world’s fastest runners, some of the world’s best beaches, hotels, food, models, academics and last but not least musicians. The birthplace of Reggae music and Bob Marley, you would think that music would be one of the nation’s…
“Rather than dating or marrying potential, it’s about dating or marrying someone that demonstrates the ability to change as needs and obstacles manifest themselves. It’s about malleability.”—Slim Jackson SBM