What to believe? There are so many articles posted online…most recently, I read about how Casey Affleck was accused of sexual harassing women that he had worked with.
There’s also all of the many, many articles about Trump. An example is about how he made fun of a disabled journalist. I watched the clip today. Before I watched the clip, I’ve heard from various places about how horrible he was for doing that, about how he is powerful and rich and putting down a person of lesser power and influence than him…etc etc. I’m paraphrasing. I thought, OH MY GOD. What did he do?!
I watched the clip. In my perception, what I saw was an immature little boy, mocking someone he didn’t agree with. His flailing of his arms seemed more about making fun of someone freaking out, than particularly targeting the man’s disability. To be clear: I do not believe, in any way, that he should be the leader of the United States of America. At all. However, it was an interesting example to me of how everything I had heard and read in the media called it a horrendous act. Horrendous? No. Immature, ridiculous, indulgent and infantile? Yes.
It got me thinking, in general, about the things that I hear and read.
A personal example for me is, I am a part of a personal growth group/program. When I first joined it, I googled it online. And a TON of crap came up. About it being a cult. About rumors of the leader ripping people off. About the leader having a harem of women that he’s with. And I got fearful.
Then I thought about what I actually experience personally while in the program, and while I don’t agree with everything (it is run by humans, after all), I do think that the curriculum itself is beautiful and transformative, if we put the work in for ourselves.
Tonight, rather randomly, I came across a man who has a website principally devoted to tearing the company apart. I was hesitant because I thought, What is the point of reading things by someone who is clearly not impartial? Then I thought, Well…is anything ever really impartial?
So, I read some of it.
Initially it inspired some fear. I think the fear more came from the possibility that these alleged things could be happening and I don’t know about them or a fear that I may be affected by them unwittingly. That I may be supporting them.
Admittedly, the courses that are offered are very expensive (for my current ability to earn money). For some people who make a lot of money, it is right within their price range. Because I am quite entitled, I want to be a part of these courses. I like the people involved and I want to be a part of what they are doing. But, the reality is, I cannot afford all of the courses that I want to take. So, there’s that. I am aware of it, and now it’s the decision to make the best choice.
The other part that I was thinking about…I have now personally experienced the people that this website talks about. I don’t know them well, by any stretch, but I have my own interactions that I’ve had with them. Part of what is suggested…I can see where it may come from. While some of the things I don’t personally agree with, in accordance to my values, I don’t think that it is harming people, like this website says.
The one thing that I think people forget about is, we all make our own choices. Sometimes those choices are difficult and it may seem like we have no other choice. I find that for myself often. Sometimes the hard choice is the better choice in the long run.
Right now, I am struggling because there is a big event happening with a lot of people that I admire and I think are cool people. Then there is a memorial for one of the leaders in the community who recently passed away. I feel pain that I’m missing it. I would have liked to have been there, even if to support those who were close to her. To be a part of it.
Then I realized, I am okay. I am okay whether I go or not. I have this projected idea that if I went, then I’d forge more bonds with the people that are also going and that we’d deepen our relationships with each other. Or not. Who knows?
In the vein of what I wrote about here, sometimes I think it is challenging to differentiate what is the reality for me, vs what is being said. I can relate to being swept up in the excitement or indignation of something (a friend of mine tattooed a quote her boyfriend said on her body and when I first heard about it, I loved the quote and loved that she tattooed it, that memory and feeling forever emblazoned on her body. However, when I was talking about it with a friend, the friend thought it was ridiculous and had her own opinion about it that I’d never considered.) I think it’s important to really think. And feel. Stop and consider things from various angles and then make the best choice from there.
Research. Try on different points of view. Critical thinking. So important, especially in this day and age where something is said, and without checking it, people believe it. Guilty, even though innocent. And even after proven innocent, guilty cloud still hangs over. Or we avoid the obvious shit right in front of us. It takes practice with persistence and bravery. xo