Common Ground

Common ground: (n) a basis of mutual interest or agreement.

I do believe the quote is attributed to Sting, lead singer of “The Police.”

When explaining his tour into the Soviet Union, in one of his lyrics he offered the conclusion that “Russians love their children, too.”

It is so easy to sit on the precipice of destruction and discuss, like naughty brats, how much more our destructive weapons could kill your people than yours could destroy ours.

But in the long run, or in the short time it takes for a bomb to explode, people are dead–and most all of them look somewhat like us.

Anything that comes along to encourage the destruction of the planet, the deception of racism, the alienation of the genders or the false pride of a culture is the feeding frenzy for us pursuing the insanity of gobbling one another up in our social cannibalism.

Every single day, in every single way, in every single building where decisions are made about human life, three things have to be honored:

  1. Flesh may have color, but it is all basically the same.
  2. If people were created, they have one Father.
  3. We have not perfected a way to snatch life from death.

Slow down.

This is called common ground.

Everything else is just a silly argument among children about who can jump the highest, and who owns the shiniest bike.

 

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Coexist

Coexist: (v) to exist at the same time or in the same place

It’s stuck right there in the middle. I’m talking about the word “coexist.”

In the chain of understanding that links us together as human beings, coexist perches on the fifty-yard line.

When we don’t respect one another, we look at other humans as “occupying space.” They are occupiers. Therefore they can be bumped, shoved and pushed around to get out of our more important way.

On the other side of coexist is “include.” This is when we realize that our space on Earth is our space on Earth, and is linked equally to every other compartment.

But somewhere along the line, in order to move away from occupying, where we disdain the value of other souls–toward including, where we not only respect but also grant dignity to the lives of others–is this neutrality of coexist.

In other words: “You have every right to be here, just like me, whether I feel that way today or not.”

That’s coexist.

  • Coexist gets rid of racism.
  • Coexist removes hyper-culturalism.
  • Coexist also demands that we cease waving our flag, ignoring the patriotism of others.
  • Coexist is a journey we take, where we lose our ignorance on our way to kindness.

Let’s learn to coexist.

Maybe we won’t get any further than that–but it’s enough to keep us from killing each other each and every day.

 

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Cessation

Cessation: (n) the process of ending

“All good things come to an end.”

Unfortunately, all bad things don’t.

For some reason we get bored with good things and decide to either evolve them or abandon them. But bad things seem to be granted social
tenure. They get to hang around even if they do stupid stuff.

Why? Because bad things are grouchy and good things smile.

It’s a lot easier to ask someone who’s smiling to go to the back of the bus than it is to approach a grouchy person with such a request.

Yes, it’s true. As long as the black man smiled back at the white bigot, not much happened–which brings me to one of the things that demands cessation in our country:

Racism.

Truthfully it will not leave until we stop talking about the beauty of cultures and the glories of separate ethnic practices. Even though we insist that everybody is different and that it’s a good thing, we work like hell to try to find common conversation and similar ground. Otherwise, parties would just be drinking in silence.

Another thing that demands cessation is genderism.

There are those who think it’s cute to point out the difference between men and women, and in doing so, keep women in a position of scrounging for crumbs of praise, while denied the cake.

And if you don’t mind, I’ll close by saying that we need a cessation on the idea of being tough.

I don’t know how that works. If everyone is tough, isn’t that just a world filled with cranky people instead of toughness?

Someone has to be kind–otherwise, nothing happens.

Nothing breaks.

Nothing changes.

Cessation will occur when we stop being afraid of grouchy people–because we decide we enjoy smiling ones.

 

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Century

Century: (n) a period of one hundred years.

I have lived in two centuries.

Matter of fact, most of what we hold dear, precious, valuable and true has occurred in my lifespan.

For instance:

From my birth to the present day, we have transported our emotions from bigotry to “Oh, my God. We’re bigots.”

We have gone from cars using gasoline to cars using gasoline but us feeling kind of guilty about it.

We have traveled from medicine believing it has the answer to some things to medicine being quite certain it has the answer to everything.

We have spanned the generation gap by explaining that psychologically, such a chasm is necessary.

We have gone to the moon, but can’t really get back there so we insist “we’re not really interested in space.”

We have flown from an era when women were treated as inferiors, encouraged to stay in the home, to a time when women insist they’re not inferior because they stay in the home.

We have progressed our technology to the point of inefficiency.

We have improved our diplomacy by continuing the threat of nuclear war.

We have addressed racism by giving it an abundance of names.

We have handled the Golden Rule by simply refusing to go to church.

And we have defined tolerance by secretly alienating humans instead of publicly insisting on separated bathrooms.

Progress is made when the human heart is tapped, confirming that we have a soul. Once we feel that our soul has some eternal journey, our brain can be trained to be more generous.

Then acts of kindness seem logical instead of magnanimous.

 

 

 

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Breach

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Breach: (n) an act of breaking or failing to observe a law, agreement, or code of conduct

A great book once alleged that there’s a power in “repairing the breach”–finding that break in etiquette or sensibility that can be covered with a multitude of grace.Dictionary B

It is a noble notion.

The difficulty with the mission is that people will often argue with you about whether there’s a breach in the first place. After all, a common conversation with fifty Americans will render much different responses:

  • Is there racism?
  • Is chauvinism a problem?
  • Should poverty be addressed or should we just try to motivate people to work harder?
  • Is there a God or are we on our own?
  • Are people of different lifestyles entitled to their rights?
  • Should we judge people by the color of their skin?
  • Should we question religions?
  • Is it possible that some people are just better than others?
  • Do the heavens have a “chosen people?”

If we cannot agree that there’s a breach, then the repairing will be considered foolish or intrusive.

What can we agree on about our pain before we seek a relief?

It is not so much that our problems are complicated–it’s more that they’re denied.

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Brazen

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Brazen: (adj) bold and without shame

Up to this year, I would have sworn or even argued that the word “brazen” could not be used except for referring to a “hussy.”

And a hussy, in this context, points to a woman having an extraordinary appetite for naughtiness.Dictionary B

But after I experienced the political climate that infested our country, I will tell you that “brazen” does not require a tube top and a foul mouth. It works just as well with an overly expensive suit or a pantsuit.

We were led to believe that virtue, kindness, consideration and courtesy are optional. These ideas of common ground and gentility were presented to us as signs of weakness rather than the building blocks of strength.

We talked about affairs, chauvinism, racism, lying, cheating and deceit as if they were a badge of honor to establish acclaim for a well-seasoned practitioner of politics.No one stopped to ask what such activities would breed in the hearts of the common man and woman.

So we stand back, a little astounded that people are a bit more surly and considerably more apathetic. Maybe they don’t choose to become as brazen as the front-runners of the political parties, but they have adopted some of the nastiness and made it their own.

So it falls the lot of sane men and women everywhere to kindly, but purposefully, challenge surliness and awaken the indifferent. It is a work that should have been unnecessary had we been offered wizened souls.

But since we weren’t, it is the new mission of the angels.

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 Don’t let another Christmas season go by without owning Jonathan’s book of Christmas stories

Mr. Kringle’s Tales …26 Stories ‘Til Christmas

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An advent calendar of stories, designed to enchant readers of all ages

“Quite literally the best Christmas stories I have ever read.” — Arthur Holland, Shelby, North Carolina

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Brand

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Brand: (n) a type of product manufactured by a particular company under a particular name.

I was informed that you can clean your battery terminals by pouring a little bit of Coca-Cola on them to get rid of the excess residue.Dictionary B

Yet for some reason, the Coca-Cola bottling company does not choose to advertise this. They instead insist on punctuating their brand as a beverage which is tasty and enjoyable, especially refreshing when served over ice.

I have heard that toilet paper has been applied in a comedic way to write comical or whimsical notes. Yet I have never seen Charmin market their product as stationery. They continue to persist in believing that the best angle for promoting their brand is to insinuate how comfortable it is to the bum.

Isn’t that fascinating?

Even though there may be other uses, purposes or maybe interpretations of a certain commodity, they are not brought to the forefront, simply because they are either bizarre, aberrant or silly.

I, for instance, was drawn to be a believer in the Gospel of Jesus because his brand was “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

Unfortunately, I am always inundated with those who have found other uses for the Gospel, including racism, chauvinism, self-righteousness and greed.

I feel it is my job to reject this promotion, which would try to draw people to a message of hate, instead of the intended outcome of a community of mutual understanding.

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 Don’t let another Christmas season go by without owning Jonathan’s book of Christmas stories

Mr. Kringle’s Tales …26 Stories ‘Til Christmas

Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling!

An advent calendar of stories, designed to enchant readers of all ages

“Quite literally the best Christmas stories I have ever read.” — Arthur Holland, Shelby, North Carolina

Only $5.99 plus $1.25 shipping and handling.

"Buy