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Posted:I'd like to pose the question, what matters to you? What are your values? Where do you find meaning? Relationships matter to me. Connection matters to me. I so honor the amazingly close friendships I've been offered with other humans. I've also have nurturing relationships with animals and plants. Also with myself as a human in all aspects, physical and metaphysical. I do my best to care for all the relationships I have in life, whether in "real-time" or on a discussion board. Ritual also matters to me. The beauty of ritual is we each get to create meaning for ourselves. My ritual doesn't have to be your ritual. My meaning doesn't have to be your meaning. Ritual, to me, means things matter. Whatever those "things" are. It's an incredible relief to me in a world where seemingly nothing matters and everything is wrong. Operating on many levels at once is a value to me. I can adorn my body with paint and tattoos and hair dye and still be thoughtful enough to carry on a philosophical conversation and still feel enough to understand and validate other points of view. If one of us decides to create beauty in the world through physical adornment, however that manifests, that is their right and privelege to create beauty and my honor to receive it. I value communication done with respect for the relationships, ritual and manifold nature I've just written about. These are the things that matter to me. In the end, we each get to decide what matters to each of us. So, what matters to you? Thanks for reading.Diana

Location: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Member Since: 23rd Dec 2000
Total posts: 341
Posted:I LOVE this thread!!juggleloser,thanks for taking the time to answer my question. i appreciate it. quote: One thing I also believe in is peoples own responsibility for themselves... so if I accidentally upset some neurotic person by doing or saying something mundane then I'm sorry but they've also got to realise that it's their own attitude that hurts them... Right! Ok, now I see where you're coming from. Thanks man.Finn
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[This message has been edited by Finn (edited 01 February 2001).]

Posted:Arial,On second thought, I will respond to your assertions. I suppose even if I've your general tone arrogant and insulting to others and myself, I can respond to the issues you posted.No, I *not* saying it's ok to live in a bubble. I'm saying that if someone tells you what you believe is bullshit, you still get to decide whether they're right or not. It *can* serve a point of examination, "how important is this really?" But in the end, each of us gets to decide what our values are. It doesn't matter how forcefully and certainly they put it across. It's still your decision whether it's your value or not. For instance, I can tell you you're being arrogant and insulting and you still get to decide whether that's true or not. It's important to allow yourself to be affected by what's going on around you. I made a point of stating that, not because I live in oblivion, but because we all need reminders of what's important to us. Me being no exception. This board give you the unfair disadvantage of not knowing me personally. If you knew me, you'd know that, while I haven't saved the world by any means, I was a dedicated environmental and peace activist in my younger life and continue to live in accordance with those values. I remain an activist today working with an grassroot arts org, a traveling mystical healing circus, and the way I treat people in my everyday life.And, Gratitude, that's a very good point. I'm a very grateful person, but apparantly in a different way from you. I'm grateful for the cozy bed in my apartment, in a house and in a neighborhood I share peacefully. I'm grateful I have a job, however imperfect, that supports this life. I gives thanks for my meals. I give thanks for my friends. I give thanks for my learning. I grateful everyday that I have a body that works. I am grateful for things and in ways I can't express. For me, I know what to be grateful for comes from knowing what's bad. *Being* grateful comes from experiencing what's good.Thanks, Arial, I wouldn't have comes to this idea, if you hadn't participated.Diana

Posted:perhaps not surprisingly, I see the attitude of "You should be grateful for not being shot / raped / pilliaged" as a remarkably self-centred and disempowering and eventually soul destroying POV. BUT before you all kick my ass, please let me explain
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-why this attitude will make you either sad, or uncaring.-Questions you should ask yourself (and probly will at some stage or another if you follow the "wake up out of bed and feel thankful for not being shot" school of thought.Why do I derserve to not be shot? If I'm lucky for not being shot - does that mean all the ppl who do get shot are unlucky? What did they do to deserve being shot?Obviously, 99% of ppl if being truthful to themselves will answer;There is no reason why I deserve not to be shot and the ppl in the warring countries do (in fact - living in a western civilisation - you are BY BIRTH stuffing up the environment much more and adding to the unbalanced distribution of wealth on a world scale. Is this your fault? No. you couldnt CHOOSE another country to be born in.)= Cogntive dissonance (Your behaviour is not matched to the attitudes you have = discomfort)Experience cogdis for long enough, and you will either get really sad, or stop giving a shit (this is just the way ppl deal with cogdis - there are stacks of studies on it).-why this attitude is disempowering-Being grateful for things not being as bad here as they are somewhere else, is not making any reference to your ability to affect the lives of the disadvantaged ppl. Its just saying; Things are the way they are, and I'm pretty happy *I've* got the colour TV!. (talk about predetermination!)-why this attitude is self-centred-this whole attitude is based on your comparison between yourself, and other ppl (with of course - you at the centre). It doesnt take account of the fact that EVERYONE has an equal right to a cool life, and that balancing that out, is the best way to help everyone out.So after all this crap, you might be asking yourself, so Josh -you think you know it all- WTF *are* we supposed to think / do etc?How about - rather than thinking, I'm glad I've got it good, think; I've got it good, how can I help other ppl to have it as good as me? Can I do anything to help make those dudes realise their potential to be not shot? As a wage earner in a western civilised country I CAN make a huge difference. We ARE powerful.Anyhow - this is probly fully faulty, and you guys may or may not cain me for it, but at this point, I reckon its right for me. Please tho, if you think I'm wrong (and can support it with sensible argument) share your thoughts, cuz I wanna do whats right for all, not just me
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Josh-Is this going out on a limb?


the henna lady
Location: WNY, USA
Member Since: 15th Dec 2000
Total posts: 6193
Posted:Interesting Josh. And I have no intention of caining, or disagreeing with you, or anyone else. I have read every entry on this strand and come to this conclusion...we all live exactly how it is appropriate for us. We view the world and act/react within our lives in a way that best suits our lives. Yes, we can have an impact but most of us don't even know where to begin. It's the little fish in a big pond feeling. I also want to say that it is in the basic human nature to look out for ourselves, I mean primal basic nature.Back when "Ugh" first went hunting, if someone stole his food he killed him (and prolly ate him too). "Ugh" only cared about his place in his world, his family/tribe and his survival in it. If other tribes warred and died, there was more food for "Ugh", no big deal. Natural selection and survival of the fittest, I believe are truly in our most rudamentary natures. We talk about saving the world, but what are you willing to sacrifice to do that? Arialtetsu has commented about us all sitting in front of our computers so much while people are starving and yet is guilty of that very same crime. We all *know* people are homeless and starving in our own communities, not even looking globally here, but beyond volunteering somewhere (which is something I do and is commendable I feel
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), are you willing to open your home to these people whom you don't know and are uncertain won't kill you and rob you blind? Will you go to your job to feed them everyday? What are you willing to risk to give someone else creature comforts? In our reaching for Utopia history has illustrated martyrs and sacrifice time and again,as well as varying viewpoints on how to achieve that blissful state, which makes me ask, beyond material sacrifice, what risks are you willing to take to save someone else? Are you willing to die for a stranger as easily as you would for your family or friends? Are you willing to make your children go without in order for someone else to have?We are survivers by nature. We elevate ourselves by our holdings, from the 12 wives of "Ugh" to the empires of Rome to the cars and properties of today, it is something held in high social reguard and social reguard equates to food/shelter/the illusion of safety and so those who strive to achieve are the survivors. Am I saying it is right or wrong? Not on my life. Am I saying anyone here is right or wrong? We are all right for or own lives. Am I saying this theory is flawless? Nope. Mother Teresa is a prime example. What I am saying is that I believe it is in our natures to survive by all means necessary, and while compassion has definately developed in the human species since the time of "Ugh", there is that bit of survival instinct-rest be damned in all of us, whether we acknowledge it or not.And as a side note...I use "we" in this as a human race, societal referrence and not as a we representation of us on the boards.So that is my piece...just so Josh won't be the only one being philisophical
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.Okay (takes deep breath,closes eyes and waits for firing squad to shoot)....I'm ready, fire away.
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------------------Pele Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir...

Higher, higher burning fire...making music like a choir
"Oooh look! A pub!" -exclaimed after recovering from a stupid fall
"And for the decadence of art, nothing beats a roaring fire." -TMK

Posted:I guess I shoulda tempered my words a bit
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I dont think there are many ppl that could live their lives doing everything they can to help ppl out...However, it's not all or nothing. Small things can help a lot (although - admittedly, helping a homeless person rise to the standard of living I enjoy in my society would cost 1000 times more than raising the standard of living for a starving child in a 3rd world country).And this is what I was really talking about - the fact that ppl are starving to death in many countries. Our homeless ppl are a lot better off than those guys...Tribalism is, in my opinion an unfortunate left over (just like stereotypes which I think are closely related) from a time when it actually was a survival trait...as for human nature, if you mean human nature in the context of what we are taught, and how we are taught to live our lives, then I agree...aqusition of wealth is drilled into us from birth. However, I dont think it's genetic!
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It ALL exists in our heads, and those parts of our ideas that we project onto the world, are just that - the end product of an idea (or group of ideas). In the end you can change your mind about these things...(even tho that may make it harder for you to be a part of this society (society = a group of ideas that it is implied you will subscribe to while participating in society))...I sound all so activist about this, but really, I havent acted much of it out. Still. Education is the first step, without that ppl wont even know that they have options.mm. I think I've said what I can. now I'm gonna think for a bit. then I may act on my thoughts
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------------------[Josh][Sound beams producing arcs of light]

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