Health and Fitness Philosophy Religion, Politics and Philosophy

Rectitude Versus Popularity

Of all the considerations that plague modern man, one of the most difficult—particularly for the young—appears to be the battle between popularity and rectitude (being correct). For many, the battle may continue much further than their youth. Many seem, in point of fact, to continue to fight the battle for the majority of their days.

For myself, most of the time, I choose integrity and rectitude whenever they are available and am largely unwilling to accept popularity as a motivation to select a given course of action, pursuit or idea. That doesn’t always “work out,” since at times, the popular choices are the ones in front of my face, and, until I have the time and effort to devote to research, I choose them almost “by default.” I don’t think I am nearly alone in this.

For many folks though, I see popularity being the “winner” almost as a standard response, if not entirely so. This is the more unfortunate, since most of the time, the popular way of looking at and dealing with things is far from the best one.

On the other hand, I would issue a warning to anybody who has it in mind to select an answer, course or direction based on its correctness. If you really do the research be prepared to “suffer the consequences” of making your decisions based on correctness rather than as a result of looking at what is popular.

Bearing the aforementioned in mind, I would go on to issue yet another caveat. That would be, be prepared to be challenged. Sometimes the challenges that come will more or less be people who are “sold on” the popular being unwilling to accept that which you have determined to be correct, sometimes not.

I’m not saying you should ignore the former, just that you should consider anything they bring to the table through the “filter of” understanding that they are about and interested in what is popular. That doesn’t mean they won’t “bring something to the table” beyond what is common. For the most part though, be prepared for the disappointment of “shallow thought.”

In the case of the latter (those not “sold on” the popular), the chances are far better you’ll at least hear something that is reasonable and makes sense. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t greet their challenges with polite skepticism. It does though, mean you ought to be more readily willing to open your mind to what the person in question has to say.

The more research and consideration you have done, the less likely you will find others are to sway you away from the thing you have decided to be correct. And that will only “get worse” with age.

One of the things a good many young people fail to realize, is that old folks didn’t generally come to what they hold dear and believe strongly either by accident (though sometimes that’s the case, it’s not nearly always so), or overnight. It has taken my getting older to come to understand just how true a thing that is.

Regardless all of this, each person must make a decision (really many decisions) to seek direction based on some criteria and for my part, I see none of more worth than rectitude and integrity.

If you take no other thing from this, away from what I am saying here, take away the idea that your decisions are yours. You can try to “blame others” for what you have decided or chosen to believe, but in the long run, what you have decided and chosen is nothing more or less than your own.

Have a good day!

Health and Fitness Philosophy Religion Religion, Politics and Philosophy

Reality and Truth Versus Dreams and Feelings

There has been a subject on and off of my heart and mind for some time.

I won’t go into details as to why this is the case, rather, I have it in mind to cover the subject itself and let folks work out for themselves the whys and wherefores.

The subject is summed up in the title of this blog entry. My hope is to shed some light on the variance between the “two sides of” the equation in question.

I have to warn those reading, that there is a required stipulation to even possible agreement with what I am about to say. Put simply, that condition would be that you must be willing to accept that there is a reality, that there are truths, whether or not you are able to understand or observe it or them.

I hope even the most “relative” of people can accept and understand, that there is something that can be termed reality, and things that can be termed truth. I know—to some degree—that my hope is a vain one.

Even if you tell people things like, “You cannot will yourself to grow two feet in a single day, then shrink two feet more than you grew in the two hours following that growth,” with the obvious conditions that you cannot use surgeries and other external forces to accomplish these feats, there are folks who will do their level best to deny that such is the case.

Assuming those folks have since “tuned out” (based on the fact that I make the above a thing you must accept in order to hear what I am about to say), let’s go ahead and move on.

I want now to say, that I am not attempting to tell people not to dream, nor am I telling them not to feel. Dreams and feelings are necessary things. Further, they both have value when one “uses” them in the right ways. I would never say either, that one ought not seek to exceed any dream or idea that presents itself to that one. Put simply, it’s entirely okay to dream and reach beyond that which can be accounted to be possible.

I want also to make it plain that people will feel. Whether the things people feel are reasonable or not is another matter. Reasonable or not, feelings will be felt. I make no argument to the contrary.

Where I differ from “the norm” (as I see it presented many places at this point in history), is in how I believe one ought to deal with dreams and feelings; most particularly feelings.

I should say as well, that I differ with many in positions as counselors and the like, about how they deal with others facing the question of how one ought to deal with dreams, feelings and the like.

What makes this sort of thing worse, is the tendency of those presenting  various flights of fancy as if they were—-for all intents and purposes—reality.

One movie put it succinctly when it said (and this may be a slight paraphrase), “You can be anything you want here in blah blah.” Many folks seem to take such a statement at face value (or at a minimum not question it in the least when it is presented).

For those positing such an idea, I have one question. “I want to be able to jump to the moon from the surface of the Earth with no thing helping me to do so, other than the muscles in my legs, is that something I can be if I choose to do so?” And assuming I were able to do that, what would be the consequence(s) of so doing?

Obviously, I could continue to present equally outlandish desires as long as my brain continued to think them up (which, I think, would be quite a while), but I think I have made my point. This is the consideration that must be had where dreams are concerned.

With regard to feelings, we can do the same sort of exercise. “I feel like I can just  jump to the moon from the surface of the Earth with no thing helping me to do so, other than the muscles of my legs.”

The fact that I can feel such a thing though, does not make it correct. 

And it’s possible for dreams to be wrong in more ways than just impossibility. Take the following. “I feel I should be allowed to kill as many people as I like for whatever reasons (or lack thereof) I choose without fear of retribution or other consequences.”

Others may think it inappropriate so to say, but such a feeling is wrong. You should have no expectation to do such a thing, regardless what feelings you have indicating the rectitude of your course.

This is—very obviously—an extreme example, there are others that are much less so, but no less incorrect when compared to reality and truth.

Put simply, feelings betray. That is to say, they cannot be trusted. You may feel all sorts of lovely or terrible things, that does not make them correct.

For clarity’s sake, I should say that the same is true of dreams. Just because you can dream it, neither makes it correct, nor even possible.

Getting to the point then let me make the following statement. “One ought to look carefully at why they believe what believe and hold what they hold. If the one in question finds there is nothing more to support what they believe or hold than their dreams and/or their feelings, perhaps they should examine those beliefs or things held with more care and truly question the veracity of them.”

That having been said, I will get along to other things that must be done so that reality doesn’t “take a bite out of” me.

Have a good day!