By Kenneth Justice
~Have you ever been afraid to tell someone what you really believe?
—) Afraid of them getting mad at you
—) Afraid of them thinking you are stupid
—) Afraid of them making fun of you
—) Afraid they won’t like you anymore
The Internet and Blogging is an interesting medium because it puts our words and thoughts out to an unsuspecting world. People we’ve never met now have access to anything we write and make available.
I would be lying if I said I never spent any time thinking about what people might think when they read what I have to say. Over the course of my short blogging career I’ve been called a few uh…colorful names, received a number of unhappy emails, and have found out that not everybody agrees with The Culture Monk.
Stepping out into the world and telling others what you REALLY believe can be scary. It also tells us a lot about ourselves; how will we react when people don’t receive what we have to say? How will we react when we receive criticisms?
—) Will we be defensive?
—) Will we lash back?
—) Will we be patient?
—) Will we simply ignore the critics?
How do you deal with people when you tell them what you believe and they aren’t happy about it?
To be honest with you, I’m always surprised to find out that anyone agrees with me. Too often in my life I have felt like it’s been me against the world; as though I’m stuck in a vicious culture that is unwilling to think outside of the box. It often feels as though the people in Western Culture are too closed minded; everything is often black or white, right or left, and liberal or conservative. People who are in the middle like myself can often be left feeling on the outside….as though we were born in the wrong era or at the very least born in the wrong culture.
As a Christian, I read the bible verse that says, “Fear no person” yet it doesn’t bring me much comfort because I wasn’t born with a ‘bullhead’. I’m more of the sensitive type and am not fond of getting into a verbal fight over beliefs. I’m a pretty laid back individual……but the reality of life is that if we’re going to bring about any kind of positive change in the world we’re going to have to tell people what we believe…right?
I mean…..that’s what got people like Gandhi in trouble; for telling the people in authority “This is what I believe”. It got him arrested….and in the end it got him killed.
Same thing happened with that dude Jesus in the bible…….he went around all lovey-dovey like, hanging out with the poor, calling the religious leaders a bunch of hypocritical f***ing a** h***s (my modern vernacular) and those religious leaders fought back by getting him nailed on a tree.
That kind of s**t scares me; am I so committed to helping the poor, reaching out to the homeless, and speaking my mind about injustice in the world that I would be prepared to die for my beliefs?
Holy cow dude…..I don’t know about that. I’m being honest with you……dying for my beliefs…seems kinda extreme doesn’t it? That level of devotion to a cause seems so remote from the life we live here amongst Western Culture….doesn’t it?
Of course, Gandhi and Jesus didn’t walk around with a sign that read, “Please murder me”……they simply stood up for something they believed in, they spoke their mind about “JUSTICE” and “Truth”…..and it ended up getting them killed.
“Okay” you might be thinking, “Aren’t you getting a bit extreme here Kenneth? I mean C’mon dude, you’re talking about being martyred for helping the poor, speaking out against injustice, and serving humanity? REALLY???”
Obviously I’m not obsessing about whether or not I’m going to be murdered if I begin really speaking my mind……..but it puts things in a different perspective, doesn’t it?
Think about it. There are people that have lived throughout the course of human history that had such a deep love for their fellow humans that they were willing to pay the severest penalty for speaking their mind. It’s a pretty intense thought….isn’t it?
Am I that type of person…….I really don’t know; I can’t answer that because the kind of devotion those people throughout history demonstrated seems so much farther above my meager existence and abilities.
I’m just one little person who sits at his computer and types away……..or can we be something more?
I think I’ll have another cup of coffee as I consider the topic a bit more,
Categories: Culture & Society