So, what follows is a blog (my very first blog ever) that I posted on MySpace shortly after I opened up a profile back in February ('06). I was thinking about it lately and thought that it might be good to post on here. Ok, so maybe I'm being totally lazy and haven't sat down to write anything original lately, but I'll chalk it up to busyness, final papers, final exams, and perhaps general procrastination. But really, I think the content makes more sense for this blog than for MySpace, and it will give "all my fans" something to read. I've refrained from editing it in any way for antiquity's sake, so know that it was written almost a year ago. I have many updated thoughts on this since I've been studying logic in school, but I'll save any such thoughts to the replies, if they so relate.

I've been thinking for a couple of years now that I will someday write a book entitled "Perspectives." Rest assured this will not be a photo book or have anything to do with the artistic mind. Rather it will be a collection of my frustrations with communication in our world...or America, anyway.

So often we communicate with others (or simply respond to incoming words) with a complete lack of respect for their point of view. I'm not even sure that I can use the phrase "point of view" here because of the enormous amount of use it has endured over the years; and I think we have minimized it to be something much less than we realize, not to mention more complex than it really is. I don't mean to say that we do this intentionally or out of sheer malice. But think about the most basic of arguments or frustrations we have with another and begin to understand your conversational partner's basic outlook on the topic of choice. Odds are that you have been in those same shoes (yet another heavily used phrase). Even right now as I write, I myself must think about such things as what each and every one of these words might mean to you, my reader.

I am so damn sick and tired of arguing. For the most part, I gave this up years ago because I realized that arguing has less and less to do with who's right (that is, if right and wrong have anything to do with the particular argument in the first place) and more and more to do with our pride. I once heard someone say that of our deadly vices (envy, lust, avarice, wrath, sloth, gluttony, and pride), the last is our most deadly. It is, of course, destructive in and of itself, but a failure to recognize any of the others IS pride itself, making IT the root of all evil (not money). This is not to say that I don't still have many arguments with others in my head, but I've managed to suppress them a whole lot better over the years. However, this doesn't do anything to change (for the better) my attitude toward certain people, which is another vital component of communication. So whether or not we make any progress in suppressing our tendencies to argue without care for any party other than our own, it has absolutely no effect on our character, which will in turn shine through in our actions nonetheless, communication not excluded.

I think pride "takes pride" in its ability to infiltrate our network of interpersonal communication. How often do we sit down with another and give a crap how the other person is receiving our words? I can sit and complain about how so and so didn't do the dishes (roommates: this is hypothetical), and I can give them a piece of my mind if I'd like, but without doubt I have done the same. The issue here isn't hypocrisy, it's our ability but lack of tendency to soak in the other person's feelings (as best imagined) in THAT MOMENT and at THAT TIME in THE PRESENT. Because we can always go back and reflect and go "oh, yeah, I was an idiot." However, this whole problem has nothing to do with recognizing our faults either, but recognizing them in the moment that they matter. Am I really willing to consider how my words feel to another before saying them myself? Do I really give a rip about how another person is receiving me in my moment of "wisdom" or do I just want to hear myself talk? And here's one: Am I willing to submit myself to the pain that I'm dishing out, not because I necessarily deserve it, but because I want to be in touch with what I'm giving to someone else so as to not succumb to bitter or revenge-driven wrath but rather a character of merciful justice. What if we thought about this when we developed our justice system? I think we did, with respect to our country, but certainly not in our personal lives.

As an aside, I can't help but wonder if Jesus' forgiveness has less to do with our past sins and maybe a little more to do with our present neglect of others. And not "present" in the sense that "I've been struggling with such and such LATELY," but present in the sense that Jesus is there to redeem your shortcoming in the very moment it is happening.