How To Love A Sociopath And Why It Is So Important To Do So

                       How To Love A Sociopath And Why It Is So Important To Do So

Congratulations! You have opened something that is not about the American presidential campaign!

Some of us may have an extra drink occasionally or smoke more than a sensible amount of weed now and then. Others may fudge a number here or there on our taxes. We’ve all literally and figuratively farted in public at least once in our lives—but few humans are as universally toxic as upper level politicians. By now we know that both candidates are a perverse distortion of democracy. Neither they nor any other bad actor on the political stage will be mentioned again here.

This article is about us real people.

Several folks have asked me the same very interesting question. It is possible that someone has asked you this same question, too! Here’s a short paragraph of backstory.

I have some friends (Democrat and Republican) that are politically conservative. Well, they like to think of themselves as Conservatives. As is true for most Americans I know who describe themselves as serious Conservatives regardless of party affiliation, these friends could more accurately be called Regressives. In mind-bending contrast to the personal kindness and generosity they often show to friends and family, these folks seem to turn a blind eye to the cruelty and consequences of our national actions. They don’t really want to conserve anything so much as they want to regress into ways of life that have, at least in part, been rightfully done away with already. These folks hate (i.e. are scared of) certain religions and races en masse. They love everyone in a uniform regardless of the actions performed by the people wearing those uniforms. They defend police brutality and military aggression as long as these actions are disguised as quasi-holy freedom-and-security crusades. These are the people who believe they don’t need to go through all the uncomfortable work of checking their attitudes or the facts because Fox News has already done that for them. My few conservative/regressive friends also, and in spite of all the evidence to the contrary, seem to have strong ties to the Middle Ages regarding an inherited, habitual belief in a God who is always on their side during any conflict. They have never heard Ann LaMott’s quote “If your God hates the same people you do, you have created God in your image.” (Italics are mine.)

Here is the question that my more progressive friends ask me. “Whether Christian, Muslim, Buddhist, American, Saudi Arabian, Chinese, or otherwise—how can you hang out with sociopathic psychopatriots? What common ground could you possibly have with these people? Their attitudes aren’t much different than the attitudes of witch burners a few centuries ago.”

I have a few answers. Here they are.

The common ground I have with my conservative friends is the same common ground I have with you. We are all human beings. As humans, we are each equally desirous and deserving of happiness. We all want to be and have a right to be free from unnecessary suffering. This unified mind, this unanimous human direction of desiring happiness and bare minimal suffering is where each of us lives. Our realization of and respect for this common ground we share with all living things is humanity’s one and only possibility for attaining global sanity. That is why the Gandhis, Bernies, and Dalai Lamas keep trying to remind us of it. We all forget this basic fact too often. Honoring this common ground means making a serious effort to be as kind to every other person as one is to one’s self. The system also requires that one treat one’s self as a best friend. “Every other person” includes, of course, people of all political inclinations (as well as all races, nationalities, sexes, etcetera).

The few so-called conservative folks I know are so sweet and kind to the individual humans and animals they personally know, that I can love them for that alone. If that type of compassion spread itself around a little more, this would be a much better world. These regressive friends provide many learning experiences and a constant source of amazement for me, but they also show me how similar we all are. The contrast between the callous disregard they have for so many people who are just as human as the few people they regard so deeply is a schism that happens to some degree in each of us. An exaggerated ego attachment and sense of possession regarding things and people we consider “our own” is too often the defining characteristic of what many people call love. It is often mistaken for being love itself! Noticing this reminds me of how much work needs to be done within each of us, as well as the work that needs to be done in national and global arenas. “The only devils in this world live in our hearts, and it is there that all our battles should be fought.” Gandhi

My view of the “we’re all in this together” thing has to take on more depth and an increased, if ironical, sense of conviction after talking for a while with a regressive person. I am forced to realize that many otherwise wonderful or potentially wonderful people were badly programmed, brainwashed, and damaged—shaped since birth by a lot of inherited bullshit. This bullshit ranges from being as relatively harmless as the Santa Claus and Tooth Fairy myths all the way to the fatal notions that a God living in the sky wants us to kill people or that Nature is here to be dominated by humans. Each specific piece of this bullshit has been consistently reinforced throughout many generations, as well as during each individual’s lifetime, by the nearly constant and highly hypnotic volume of general misinformation fed to us by our culture.

People who once seemed “inherently evil” to me now seem to have the injured glow of abused children about them. You don’t throw sick children away. You help them to get as well as they can, as well as they will allow themselves to be. A lot of these regressive folks have never been hungry, homeless, brutalized, or had a bomb dropped on them for no reason. They have no first-hand concept of what those things feel like. But it goes deeper than that. Not only have they no base-station cognizance, much less experience, for the broader type of compassion to emanate from—they don’t want one. I can’t really blame them! No one wants to feel bad. Many people choose to remain willfully ignorant of the suffering of others—even if it means swallowing some bullshit explanation of that suffering in order to whitewash sympathetic pain and guilt from their minds. Many folks would rather see the wool that has been pulled over their eyes than see the less pleasant truth that would appear without it.

Denial of the painful moral inconveniences that are part of human reality has, to a sad and destructive extent, become the prime directive for many of us. To deny existence of our dilemmas may be convenient in the short run, but it kills any chance of finding solutions for those problems in the long run. It is much more comfortable to wear an inexpensive shirt if you block out or stay ignorant of the fact that it was produced by slave labor. It is easier to enjoy your gasoline-abundant road trips if you convince your self (or allow media-made popular consensus to convince you) that dropping bombs on innocent civilians in oil pimping countries is an effort to liberate victims of dictatorship. That blurry amendment to reality is a lot more palatable than facing the fact that many needless murders of innocent civilians help bring your gasoline to you. These types of moral malfunctions might be resolved with a little thought, effort, and compassionate tactical adjustment—but if they are not given appropriate attention, they can grow into cultural cancers that painfully eat a society and crap it into history’s sewer system.

There is also a deluded but very understandable logic to the regressive person’s tendency to deny problems and instead blame the victim. It is, for example, much easier to scapegoat poor people than it is to face the massive and amorphous job of solving poverty. The logic-of-convenience that allows scapegoating has no truth to it. But, much like everything else we choose to delude ourselves with, it makes perfect sense once you’ve bought the lie.

Nonetheless, and in spite of their tendency to replace objective reality with subjective beliefs, there is a human being and possibly a fine one under the seemingly sociopathic veneer of many a Conservative/Regressive. How can a person who thinks in terms of us/them be helped to see The Big We? Can we communicate the realization that both Yankee and Red Sox fans, strangers, friends, and enemies all equally deserve to enjoy happiness and a release from unnecessary suffering? What can we say that will make a person understand that happiness is doubly important because almost no one kills while they are smiling? How do we get folks to drop a little blind believing in exchange for some open-eyed thinking? How can we help our fellow humans to progress past fear, inherited ignorance, and cultural hypnosis? Maybe we can’t. But if we can, kindness and honesty presented in a respectful and non-combative form are the answers. Hatred and fear cannot survive long-term doses of truth and love.

These doses may be most potent during the immediate moment when we are actually being honest and loving with each other, but the more profound and lasting effect of all this truth and kindness requires time to solidify in the hearts and minds of our regressive friends—and it requires patience and consistency on our parts. No one ever actually changes anyone else’s mind for them. Every person is their own therapist, makes their own decisions, and has the last word about the directions their mind and life will take. But we can certainly open new avenues of thought and point to potential doorways for each other.

The presentation of these new ideas and doorways will rarely rate any attention from a listener unless that presentation is done without condescension or defensiveness.

On the other and much less productive side of this coin, any loss of patience or lack of respect for those we are talking with, any angry/frustrated arguing and screaming, only feeds the fire. Ignorance thrives on battlegrounds. Evidence against regressive thought needs to be presented strongly, confidently, and politely with a genuine concern for the person you are speaking with—without any anger, condescension, or scorn toward them. This kinder approach can eventually dissolve any ignorance.

Other valuable tools are also available. There is plenty of evidence we can site from popular sources that will impress our deluded brethren. It would be easy to show them where many respected public figures that they put stock in, from Jesus and Mohammed to Magic Johnson and Kris Kristofferson, have spoken out against bigotry, war, corruption, and the like. The right historical quote can relate strongly to present-day situations and might make a big impact on folks who are clinging to no-longer-relevant or downright delusional attitudes. Humor helps too. “If you’re going to tell people the truth, you better make it funny or they’ll kill you” Oscar Wilde.

Any quote that helps to make sanity’s point and keeps the people we are speaking with comfortably engaged is a quote worth using. “Regardless of the source, any phrase of proven truth that serves a noble purpose should speak its truth and serve its purpose.” OK, I just made that shit up—but in our age of search engines you can find a quote to fit any occasion, if you aren’t too stoned to go look for it.

Gently presenting alternative information to a partially clouded, somewhat fossilized mind may take months, years, or even generations. It can seem just as frustrating as the proverbial process of shoveling shit against the tide—but there is no better choice of action. Trying to explain the intricacies of global warming or the kharmic disadvantages of killing civilians to someone holding onto their materialized literal beliefs can leave us feeling like we might as well try to kick water uphill. Concretized misinterpretations of things that were written long ago as symbolic references can provide a severe test of any one’s patience. It can be mind-warping to attempt to speak sensibly with folks who have a firm belief in a white-skinned God that: is always on their side, loves America more than any other country, created Earth in six 24-hour days, asked penguins to toodle halfway up the globe in order to catch Noah’s boat ride, and through an adulterous affair with a virgin had a boy child named Jesus who liked to ride around on dinosaurs. But speaking sensibly to the folks who are making the least sense desperately needs to be done—and it needs to be done with a smile! It is very important to remember that every revolution is really an evolution. Anything that seems to occur spontaneously has actually been on a very long trail of grind-it-out activity leading up to that event.

I’m driven to drink (admittedly a short trip) while trying to explain things as basic as the fact that killing people for profit is wrong. The world is very painfully facing the obvious truth of that right now, yet there are still so many folks who believe that killing people solves more problems than killing the greed in people.

Changes (outside of self) don’t happen as or when we want them to. You can’t take a cake out of the oven before it is done. Logical realities will only ripen and surface in the regressive mind when they are ready to do so—the same as they do in your mind or mine. That is when the change happens and things can improve. But unless we keep our brains, hearts, compassion, patience, convictions, honesty, internal strength, loving kindness, respect, determination, and structural integrity to the grindstone on a very regular basis, improvements will never follow. The pissed-off dismay took a long time growing strong enough to spread through the American and French psyches in the 1700s before the colonists dumped tea into Boston Harbor or Marie Antoinette had her date with the guillotine. That type of violence is no longer an option—but boldly stating the case for universal decency, as Jefferson and Rousseau did for decades before their revolutions ripened, will never go out of style. Neither will Gandhi’s ideas about non-cooperation with evil.

We are now in a time and situation where triggering off gunshots or oiling up guillotines won’t work. The “fight fire with fire” mentality is actually what we need to eliminate. Its previous results are what we are trying to repair. Fighting fire with fire doesn’t work. It has never worked. It produces bigger fires sparked by more advanced arsonists. Ask any Fireman. You fight fire with water, or smother it by using sand or chemicals. The flame loses its source of oxygen and suffocates out of existence. Sanity and honesty presented with patience and kindness can suck the oxygen out of fear and ignorance, and then repair damage from traumatic experience and misinformation.

I have heard folks defend police who shot a man although both of his weaponless arms were already pinned to the ground. I have heard people defend the needless murder of innocent foreign civilians and the death of our own misled American soldiers. I have heard folks say so very many things to rationalize their own fears, selfishness, and human frailty—that people with a different imaginary friend than they have are damned to hell, that Native Americans/Blackfolks/Tibetans/Jews/Indians/etc. are uncivilized and savage people who needed to be abused for their own good, that hungry and homeless people all deserve their plight, that obscenely irresponsible and blatantly greedy industrialization haven’t brutally damaged our environment, that foods containing more petroleum and toxins than nutrition are good for you, and so much more. It is easy for me to think, as the bumper stickers say, “If Jesus was here, he’d slap the shit out of you” and “Your god must have had a sharp stick up his almighty ass when he created you.” It is very easy to get angry at all the injustice and ignorance that allows so much painful and unnecessary suffering to continue. If I’m sick or have a bad day, the thought can briefly run across my mind that, “If someone would just bury this idiot in the hills, at least there would be one less idiot.” But I very quickly remember that: 1—becoming an asshole myself won’t help.2—truth, intelligence, patience, and real compassion are the only things that will help. 3—right now, the only things that matter are the things that will help.

Using kinder, more helpful, nobler qualities is our only chance to reach the folks who (although they may be quite wonderful to the individuals they know personally) are political and religious sociopaths due to inherited ignorance, hypnotic fears, and the ever-continuing programmed reinforcement of this ignorance and these fears by our culture.

Using kinder, nobler, and more helpful qualities is also my one and only chance of keeping myself in tow! The kindness I need to muster in order to be a decent human, to speak with folks that I strongly disagree with in a calm and respectful way, reminds me that life is about cooperation. It is a joint venture that must attempt to benefit all and hurt none. Ideas like these are valuable tools that keep me from getting frustrated to the point where I may start doing more harm than good. They protect me from becoming an angry jackass and lashing out at others—or myself. I hope I remember to use these tools more often. I hope you do too.

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EMERGENCY TELEGRAM FROM AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL TO THE INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY OF EARTH

EMERGENCY TELEGRAM FROM AN EXTRATERRESTRIAL LIFE FORM TO THE INTERNATIONAL POPULATION OF EARTH. We are watching and trying to help you as best we can! Here is what we see right now. Nothing on your planet holds the immediate importance of getting Bernie past Hillary. The effort to do so needs undivided attention. Showing up negatives of Trump and the rest doesn’t seem the best use of time and energy right now. There will, unfortunately, be plenty of time for that later. This point gets away from us too, at times, as my brothers, sisters, and I watch you Earth folks bouncing off the walls from our dear home planet of Whatdafugaretheythinkin!. In order to keep our minds from wandering, and to insure that we follow through with the effort necessary to be helpful to you, we have had to put so many weird scenarios out of our minds. I’m sure you’ve had a couple run through your mind too. The Trump show, the blatant corruption of the Democratic party machine, the immoral press discrimination–not to mention the usual points of daily distraction (pandemic war, hunger, suffering, environmental violence, the cat pooping worms, the bills needing paid, etc.) can boggle the mind, lead to runaway imagination, and divert attention from Spring time’s primary Primary objective. I have listed below a few brain farts we have suffered while watching your process from here on Whatdafugaretheythinkin!. In the spirit of so much of the material we all read, please let me know if I’ve missed any other bullshit or flights of imagination that, like these, don’t deserve attention either. ***P.S. Option #3 may be a dream or hallucination. But I think most people (who have read this far) will agree that in this case the long shot is our best shot. Success is certainly possible. We see imagination become reality every day! Every manufactured thing, every system, every invention is an imaginative hallucination before it actually gets built into material existence. THE point is that Option #3 is worth manufacturing into reality but can’t stand a chance unless the primary step of getting Bernie past Hillary is accomplished. That means winning big enough so that all the superdelegate bullshit and all the corruption cannot usurp the will of the people. Putting in as much effort as possible may not do it. I respectfully urge all my Earthling friends and group members to surpass “possible” and put in as much effort as is necessary to get the job done. *P.S. To my many wonderful friends and all the group members in India, China, Australia, Europe, and elsewhere around the world; If you think American international policy couldn’t get any worse than it has been, you’re wrong. This is a serious situation. The results of this election will affect the entire world—again. Whatever noise you can make, whatever support you can muster for the side of peace and compassion will be heard, felt, and appreciated not only in the USA but throughout the world. In the best-case scenario we can have a chance to build the kind of world that sane, happy people want to live in. In the worst-case scenario, the next wrong U.S. president could yield results so bad that America’s most recent war-mongering era will seem like a few decades with Mother Teresa. American presidents may all be no more than symbolic stooges of the ultra-rich, but the popular vote lets the controlling few know just how much they can get away with all at once. If we send them the wrong signal now, humanity may never recover. If we send the right one, we may slow these war profiteers down for long enough to avoid a whole lot of suffering—and we could even get some problems fixed! Thank you. http://www.fearlesspuppy.org And now for our short list of Extraterrestrial brain farts, similar no doubt to some that are occurring in the minds of many Earthlings. Love and Peace from Planet Whatdafugaretheythinkin! Your Pal, Jahbuddha the Unconquerable 1—a) Trump gets snubbed by the Republican party and replaced by Jeb or Cruz. (This can certainly happen as the party chooses the candidate. The popular vote is an illusory process.) b) Trump gets killed by an assassin who says he “would have killed Hitler” if he could have. Don Drumph, at that point, is blown out of the human as well as the presidential race. Either way, a or b, the Trump followers spew violence and civil war in America. The country and the world are then further divided and conquered by the few people who already own everything. 2—Somebody blows Bernie away, saying he was an evil commie socialist. The assassin claims he “would have killed Hitler” if he could have. No one knows what might happen then. Liberal America doesn’t have the stupidity or the balls to violently revolt. A nationwide strike of non-cooperative inaction would make waves, but who knows if glorious India would have had the balls to do it if Gandhi had been capped before that famous “day of prayer and fasting” ever got off the ground? Regardless, we wouldn’t get total cooperation on this non-cooperation thing anyway, not even from folks of like mind. Americans don’t know how to cooperate that well anymore. Vastly expanded numbers of military/police folk would then be called in to man essential stations left vacant, thereby killing the desired effect of the general strike (and probably a few hundred protestors). The nation and the world then get further divided and conquered by the same few people who already own everything. 3—Bernie gets elected and the world moves toward Utopia. People regain their senses and start taking care of each other. Folks who were previously vicious scumbags have a great and sudden simultaneous epiphany and become big-hearted altruists. The people who own everything start giving it back to the people they took it from. (Of course we’d all settle for even some moderate, concrete, progress in these directions.) 4—Bernie gets elected but is hog-tied by the system. Nothing changes. The world is further divided and conquered by the few people who still own everything. 5—Trump wins the American presidency and America takes that last step to becoming the new Nazi nation. The world is further divided and conquered by the few people who own everything. All that was known as “civilization” is set back several centuries and human suffering is incalculable. 6—a) Hillary gets elected. Four to eight more years of business-as-usual (corruption, war, poverty, injustice, etc.) b) A different Republican than Trump gets elected president. Four to eight more years of business-as-usual (corruption, war, poverty, injustice, etc.) 6b has more of a mean streak than 6a and would likely be a more destructive option, but they are both owned by the same few people—yes, the ones who own everything and divide the rest of us so they can run off with the loot at a cost of great suffering by the vast majority. *Please help make the first step a reality. Ignore all the possible futures and work hard to get Bernie past the corruption now. We here on Planet Whatdafugaretheythinkin! would then develop a lot more confidence in your planet and might feel more comfortable about actually showing up there to help with the rest of the process. For the time being, we will watch from a little distance and help as we can. I gotta tell you the truth. No insult or disrespect intended. Watching your politics reminds us of watching monkeys throw shit balls at each other in the zoo. Make an ET brother want to land! Get your Bernie past the bullshit by any peaceful means necessary! Enjoy the effort. You’re going to meet some nice people.

A Video That May Reincarnate You!

A Video That May Reincarnate You!

Great video discussion about… well, a lot of notions that would be very valuable to whoever takes them into account. Below is what the interviewer thought. I thought highly of her too. Catherine is a vivacious, intelligent, woman–lovely in every sense of the word, and she’s damn good at what she does.

If you are looking to be inspired and been wondering if you can make a difference…you have to watch Ten Doug Rose‘s video chat with me! I’m so grateful for his candor and simplicity on what appear to be complicated matters! http://youtu.be/Ocygpv0t7ME

One Lucky Turkey!

13

Gratitude

From the newly released book Reincarnation Through Common Sense. All author profits sponsor wisdom. Please see http://www.fearlesspuppy.org

    

      Most folks are grateful when something unusually pleasant comes along, great pain ends, or somebody does them a favor. People seem to save gratitude for special occasions.

     The people who live at this Temple are grateful nearly all the time for whomever they are with and whatever they are doing at the moment. They remember what a lot of us have forgotten. Even when life seems to suck, there is probably something as well as someone in our life who deserves gratitude. That someone may not have physically done anything for us. They may only have encouraged us, or wished us well. But a good thought is easier to catch than a bad cold, and a good thought can carry a person a very long way. Encouragement and good wishes aren’t the small potatoes they appear to be at times.

     Gratitude has a powerful potential to multiply into a series of good events. I’m grateful for that, but then again I’m grateful for a lot of things. I’m too broke to get into the poorhouse and just a couple of weeks past suicidal, but things are improving rapidly. A very highly respected spiritual leader has invited me into his community—no money down. Professional altruists care for me and a whole village feeds me. I’m doing very well for a dead guy. So when a wild errant thought still tells me that leaving life may be a better idea than staying with it, there is a pleasantly heavy load of gratitude balancing that errant thought.

      I lean on it.

     My debt of gratitude is owed to everyone who has put their generous effort into helping keep my boat afloat and teaching me how to adjust my sails to the wind. This debt will not be repaid by my untimely demise. That would make all their noble efforts wasted. And so, morbid thoughts must be replaced with better ones such as gratitude.

     I guess whatever thoughts replace suicide are an improvement, but gratitude is special. Gratitude itself is so pure and good that it doesn’t care if I use it as a crutch. Gratitude doesn’t care what form it is used in. It’s just grateful to be working.

     I’m grateful that it’s working too.

 

From the newly released book Reincarnation Through Common Sense. All author profits sponsor wisdom. Please see http://www.fearlesspuppy.org

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What Does Matter

What Does Matter

(*This piece is from next year’s book, Voices of Reason From the End of the World. It is the lead chapter in a section that pays respect to great teachers and influences. It is dedicated to George Carlin. We’re lucky in America. There have been and still are many comedians that infuse heavy doses of wisdom into their humor, but “Uncle George” was always at the top of that mountain. I, and so may others, give thanks for the fact that he was on Earth—and for the little bits of his brilliance that rubbed off on us.)

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            Thank you, Mr. Carlin. You brought us laughter, truth, integrity, courage, and conscience—and you did each of them better than most folks do any one of them.

 

            Just so there are no misunderstandings, I would like to officially state something right here at the beginning of this section. Almost none of the people (there are a few exceptions) who are complimented here as teachers and influences actually know, or ever knew me. I’m not trying to make believe that I am in some kind of buddies club with every genius on Earth, or that I have personally met and had social what-to-do with any of these people. I go to lectures, classes, concerts, get the books, and watch them on the computer, HBO specials, or PBS—just like nearly everyone else who has been smart enough to seek them out or lucky enough to stumble across their information.

            I have an active imagination. Even video contact can affect me strongly at times, but that’s where the “relationship” ends.

            What is the big deal with this meeting-a-famous-person shit, anyway? A few people have become a lot more known than the rest of us. Sometimes this happens because we admire a person’s genius, talent, or merit. Just as often, it happens through no actual accomplishment on the part of the famous person! It often happens because shill marketing and media conglomerates with paper assholes are selling the public an image, and an artificial relationship to it. These media and marketing folks work for corporate pimps that collect big bucks from this artificially manufactured hero-worship. This hero-worship results in bizarre purchasing habits on the part of consumers who have been hypnotized into believing that their imagined connection with the “hero” is concrete, meaningful, and has some connection to the product for sale.

            Being famous is no big fucking deal. It is even less of a big deal if your major accomplishment is that you’ve met one of these celebrity heroes, whether they are of the real or artificially manufactured variety. Celebrity itself is often bullshit. Celebrity by association is even more so. There’s no end to the respect I have for the people who are mentioned in this chapter, but I wouldn’t brag about meeting or knowing them personally (if I’d ever done so). Meeting someone means less than a rat’s ass.

            Brag about meeting, say, Mother Teresa or the Dalai Lama? I don’t think so! I’d brag if I spoke and acted as nobly as Mother Teresa or the Dalai Lama!

            No, on second thought, I guess I wouldn’t.

            Regardless, meeting or knowing someone else doesn’t make you, yourself, an improved or more admirable individual. That happens when you are actually being, doing, or somehow taking part in something admirable.

            I feel so strongly about this that the following true story is one of my all time favorite moments in life.

 

            It was a beautiful autumn day in the mid-1980s at Hugo’s bar in scenic Northampton, Massachusetts. After an all day effort to deplete the world’s beer supply, a sudden flash of inspiration came to me. Over the course of the following several months that inspiration developed into a successful statewide charity project. It got a lot of attention and publicity from the press because it involved high-level politicians, famous musicians, major league sports teams, unions, volunteers who didn’t get paid at all, and a hot button issue. Above all, the project went well because none of the money passed through our volunteer group but instead went directly from contributors to very well established and reputable charities. There was no possible question-of-trust factor. (More details are available in the About the Author section or at http://www.fearlesspuppy.org, if you are interested.)

            Several months after the project I was back at Hugo’s, again doing my part to help society drain free of its alcohol content. I made this effort many times during the 1980s. A guy (decent sort) who infrequently frequented our watering hole came through the back door. He was known and well liked by one of the regulars at our table. We invited him to join us. Decent-sort-Mike was then introduced to several people who were famous for not being able to remember names.

           

            Mike downed half a beer and suddenly turned wide-eyed. He stared at me for a few very long seconds. It was the kind of stare that made me wonder if he was on some powerful drug and I was showing up as a freshly tapped keg in his hallucination.

            That wasn’t it. The mad stare was his sudden recognition of a person whom he knew had experienced the proverbial fifteen minutes of fame.

            “You’re that guy from the newspapers. You’re great!” said decent-sort-Mike.

            I had to reply, “Don’t be fucking ridiculous. I’m a drunk from Hugo’s, just like you are.”

            The light went on in Mike’s more than slightly bloodshot eyes. It was that deeper kind of understanding that rarely happens, even between people who know each other very well. He got it.

            A big slow “Wooooow!” came out of his mouth.

            Mike suddenly realized that he could have done that charity project, and would have received the same attention from the media if he had. Instant insight told him that anyone could have done it. It was all just about getting up and doing it. I did kick my own drunken ass into the process but that didn’t make me any more of a superman than him. The only difference between us was that I put that situation’s potential to actual use. We bought each other beers and talked for hours after that with no further misunderstandings.

 

All of us humans have the same potential to be incredible.

Who you’ve met or know doesn’t matter.

Who you choose to be
and what you choose to do with your life
is what does matter.

 

All author profits sponsor Buddhist Nuns, Monks, and other Wisdom Professionals Details at http://www.fearlesspuppy.org

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Voice Of The People?

Can We Change the Media? We Can Change the Media!

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      I’m trying to promote the sales of two books because all author profits sponsor Wisdom Professionals (beginning with Tibetan Nuns and Monks). It’s a lot of work for no pay but I believe very strongly in the quality of the books, and of course in the cause—as you can tell by the way I spell Wisdom Professionals with caps.

     The promotional process includes, among many other things, interviews. There are several places on the Internet to find lists of radio and TV interviewers. These interviewers want to discuss certain topics and are looking for folks who have information that fits into those categories. There are also lists of print reporters looking for information on the topics they have been assigned by their editors, or topics they have chosen to freelance.

      I’m grateful to all the folks who organize this and make it easier for media people to find the information they want. Their lists can also make it easier for people who have a story to find a venue that allows them to tell that story.

     But I have to admit to needing a stiff drink or two after every trip through one of these lists. I look at them the same way I look at a dog that licks my face directly after eating dried turds out of the cat box. Sometimes one shower isn’t enough to wash it off. Most of the topics listed are mind-numbing drivel. What our media feeds its public makes the whole world appear to be Open Mike Night gone wild at the corner of Tequila and Meth.

     Now, of course, I’m not talking about the “regular news.” Not much of what is on these lists pertain to that. The talking heads that color our perceptions of and reactions to staged wars, real fires, Emmy award-eligible politics, predictable corruption, illusory economics, selectively reported/racially profiled criminal activity, and other macabre distractions have their scripts composed by greater powers.

     No, I’m talking about the groundwork that mediates our psychological landscape—the mind melting goo that softens our brains up enough so that we can eventually fall prey to the bigger stuff. The reporters on these lists seem, for the most part, to be collecting the type of information that we find in popular magazines, tabloids, the sillier talk shows, “reality” shows, and the like.

 Calling All Women Who Struggle With Excessive Sweating! (CBS Television Distribution)

Pet Parents Quotes for Ladies’ Home Journal (Ladies’ Home Journal)

Most Unusual Concierge Requests (National Publication )

These are not the most bizarrely inane listings! They are very ordinary.

       So many things in the world need attention. Bullshit is not one of them—and yet it seems that this sort of nonsense gets much of our daily attention while productive matters that could actually make life better starve in obscurity. Where are the reporters who ask for information from experts on cooperation versus competition? Emotional intelligence? How to live better with others? How to live better with ourselves? How to upgrade health and happiness in the modern workplace and in the home? Where are all the eager investigative beavers that gather valuable information about the advantages of using basic golden-rule morality as business ethics? Why love and compassion are so important in every imaginable venue?

       They are not to be found on the most popular media lists. This bothers me. So I’m staring to write to a few of these young reporters every day. I pick the ones looking for the most ridiculously functionless content and send them each the letter below.

      This may irritate a few people and get me blocked from a listing service or two. That’s OK. The Law (of Karma) works in mysterious ways! Maybe out of all the letters I send, one or two will land on the right reporters who take it to heart. Maybe those reporters will go on to higher ground and then cover, and uncover, material of conscience. They may do this in an entertaining and conscious manner that will be a wonderful catalyst for the growth of world wisdom. Stranger things have happened! No one knows where the next Deepak Chopra or George Carlin will come from.

      What everyone does know is that if we keep eating turds out of the cat box, we’re going to get even sicker—and anyone who reads a newspaper, watches TV, or hears the radio knows that we’re sick enough already.

      Want to join the effort? Send the letter below or anything like it to an appropriate reporter, DJ, interviewer, editor, station manager, or wherever you think it fits.

      We know politicians don’t listen to the public voice, but maybe people who aren’t getting such a high price for sacrificing their integrity will. I hope we can reach some.

       Meanwhile, please buy a book. There are nothing but 5* reviews at Amazon for both Reincarnation Through Common Sense and Fearless Puppy on American Road. All author profits from book sales sponsor… Well, you know what they do. If not, please see http://www.fearlesspuppy.org

Open Letter to Media Friends

Hello, **NAME**!

        Please don’t misunderstand. This isn’t preaching or attempted teaching or anything like it! I’m not writing to tell you what you should or shouldn’t do or be. Being no smarter or cleaner than the next guy, I wouldn’t presume the moral authority to tell anyone anything. This is just a request from a friend.

        You are obviously a talented person or you couldn’t function at this level. With that talent comes a privileged and rewarding responsibility. This responsibility is entwined with your ability, like a car is with the road. One serves no purpose without the other.

        If you take the high ground and use your talent to focus on constructive issues, yes, it will help little do-gooder causes like mine and it will help the world at large—but that’s just a pleasant byproduct. The authentic responsibility is to your self. I doubt that I’m telling you anything you don’t already know. Even when you feel great, you can recognize a discomfort within. You know there’s a piece missing and that something is not quite right. Be grateful for that temporary and very fixable discomfort! It means that you are still in touch with yourself, that your heart is working well.

        Could the problem simply be that you know you are better than this material you are working on, and that you are frustrated by dealing with nonsense?

        In a world that’s falling apart on so many fronts, is spending your precious time and intellect doing an inane feature like this your best move? The only things that matter anymore are the things that help. Does this feature help? Does it substantially lighten the suffering of anyone? Will it help anyone understand how to become happier—or how to help someone else do it? Does it make you happier?

          I’m not talking about conservative/liberal, left/right, pro/anti, or any other form of directional, opinionated leaning. We’re just talking about choice of focus.

         *By spending yourself on wisdom, justice, and love, you become those things. If you spend your time in the cultural dumpster, you’ll start to absorb that odor instead.

          I look forward to the day when we all scrape the less productive layers of cultural nonsense off of our deeper and more meaningful concerns. When we do that, things will start to improve drastically—and when you do that, you will do great things for us all as well as for yourself.

Be well. Your Pal, Tenzin (Doug “Ten” Rose) http://www.fearlesspuppy.org

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