Over the last thirty years I have taught thousands of people who have stress related problems. Many have situations that are truly difficult. Others seem to be stuck and unwilling to solve their problems. Unfortunately the amount of people who like to talk about their situations versus change them seems to have grown exponentially. In fact I think Reality TV and a myriad of other shows focus on individuals weaknesses and their inability to use their strengths. It feels like a continual dialogue of angst riddled with excuses, blame, and martyrdom. Spilling your guts about your past and how toxic it was appears to be par for the course. If you believe everything you hear, you start to wonder if anyone had parents that weren’t nut cases. I, frankly am tired of listening to celebrities who reveal their drug use, sex addictions, inability to stay in relationships, or that they have some love child, that was the result of an affair they had with the housekeeper, pool boy, or Mongolian sheep herder. Who cares! And why do we have to keep hearing the reasons some people gained weight and are now part of a show that resembles the coliseum. We have become permeated with media that is constantly disclosing or interviewing dysfunctional people who showcase their insanities and consequently make money off it. There was a time when it was rare for individuals to reveal their immoral or dysfunctional behavior. It was a private matter and you handled it by yourself or had help from friends or family. Now, it is not uncommon to put whatever problem you have on face book, write a blog about it, create a YouTube segment or go on twitter and get hundreds of followers who are waiting to find out what you might be doing next. Whatever happened to mystique? Is privacy a thing of the past? Have we become so desperate for the “fifteen minutes of fame” that Andy Warhol predicted would be part of the future, that nothing is sacred? I keep hoping we’ll have a wakeup call and realize that we can have some “unexpressed thoughts”, but it may be too late. I for one, am hoping to write a book called “Just Shut Up”!. I would leave every page blank except for the words “just shut up”. My last page would be a little stronger , and I think you can guess what it would say. Use your imagination. Who knows, it just might work.
Listen in every Wednesday Night at 6:15pm EST to Loretta LaRoche on Lighten Up Network with her Get A Life Radio Show.
Well I’m still here and if you’re reading this, you are too! The predicted global earthquake never came and all the resulting hoopla was for naught. I did hedge my bets, by having a great meal last night. Why not leave on a full stomach? But then, haven’t we all gotten used to these prophets of doom and gloom that spread their messages of fear and damnation?
Howard Camping, a minister and president of the US conservative group Family Radio, was the catalyst for the latest prediction. He boldly claimed that the Bible guaranteed the destruction of the earth and it seems that he was able to determine the apocalypse due to his ability to calculate various other horrors starting with the great flood that he believed happened in 4990 BC. Of course, there was going to be a certain subset of the population that would be saved, about 200 million according to Mr. Camping. The rest of us would go to hell in a hand basket. If during the conflagration, we had a change of heart and embraced Camping’s ideologies then, voila, we too would experience the “rapture” and be saved.
Family Radio received 80 million dollars in contributions between 2005 and 2009 and a big chunk of that was spent on billboards and media to alert the populace to the impending catastrophe. This type of insanity seems to be at the core of some religious groups. But it can be seen as a metaphor for a great deal of humanity. It seems we spend a lot of time alienating our species from one another by trying to elevate ourselves by putting others down. We do it with racial discrimination, religious arrogance ,railing against sexual preferences, gender bashing, and a host of other toxic beliefs.
Years ago I happened to be attending a lecture by the Dali Llama. When asked what was the essence of his faith, he replied” Loving Kindness”. I believe the message put forth by the creators of most of the world’s major religions is pretty much the same. Unfortunately, it often begins to unravel ,when over time the message becomes convoluted by individuals whose egos have no boundaries. I wonder what would happen if we all woke up with the intention to simply be kind to one another and to ourselves. It seems simple enough, but if it were that easy, Mr. Camping and those like him, would have spent their time spreading love instead of fear.
I continue to think it’s possible and I’m sure many of you do too, so don’t give up!