I've been following a lot of the news that's been getting written about here, and I've been thinking about it. My partner for the project, ramara, and I are also starting to work on the Interfaith Service for Netroots Nation 2014, and I've been thinking about that.
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Increasingly often, I've been commenting to the effect that somebody or other who had just done or said something bizarre might be in the same (country/state/county/city/neighborhood/ building/room), but I wasn't sure about on the same planet. The other day, I was thinking about how often I've been saying that, and I remembered the idea that each choice that has different possibilities seeds a different universe for each possible choice. What if we're running around in the same physical space, but there are about 7 billion different universes involved?
My first husband used to accuse me of not remembering things properly. I kept trying to tell him that each of us paid attention to different things, and that there was more going on at any given time than one person could possibly hope to attend to. He never heard me - he didn't want that to be how the world worked. You know, I've never before now noticed that my ex actually had something in common with my father and my sister - who never let any actual evidence to the contrary change their minds once they decided how things were.
And ramara has come up with a theme for the Interfaith service. I'm not going to say what it is right now, but it did send me off on a riff when I sat down for last Monday's meditation.
I do not know where I ran across a quote I've thought about often over the years. I think it's a Buddhist maxim, but it's been at least 30 years since I first heard it, so I really don't know.
If you want to change the world, put away your begging bowl, get a job, and sweep outside your own front door.I've mostly understood that to mean that to improve your life, you should take responsibility for yourself and take care of what's right in front of you.
Too many people would actually take that quote literally and use it to beat up on those who, for one reason or another, cannot get or hold down a job. It's not meant to be used that way.
Too many people would think the "begging bowl" refers to financial support - it doesn't (well, all right - in a few cases it might be literal). It refers to the assumption that the world (or somebody in it) owes you anything and everything you want.
Too many people think "responsibility" means "blame". It doesn't.
Too many people think that if they can't do something world shaking, they can't do anything worthwhile at all. I've mucked out enough stalls to know horseshit when I smell it.
I think I'll get down of the soapbox now. Next week, I will undoubtedly be back to my usual blather.