Abraham Lincoln wrote, “I care not for one’s religion whose dog or cat are not the better for it.”
What good ole Abe infers is more than kindness to one’s pets, it is about behavioral hypocrisy. One’s actions are the telltale indicators of one’s internal loyalties. I may be able to quote chapter and verse from any holy book on honor and morality, post passages from inspirational resources and profess to be a ____________ (fill in religious affiliation), and all of it means nothing if I am generally unkind or march in formation with the mass conscious witch-hunts of an ‘us and them’ mentality.
Hypocrisy is lazy. Living in word/deed compliance takes work. Too often, the lack of behavioral compliance with our soap box dialogue is layered in laziness. We’re not interested in inquiring about another’s life, their path or circumstance. They’re just too different and it is inconvenient, albeit threatening to our worldview. Infiltrating our personal circles, anyone geographically, sexually, racially, religiously, politically different becomes the convenient scapegoat for our upset. We get to pin that unhappiness onto another rather than taking responsibility for our evolutional resistance and unsettling emotional turmoil. Laziness fosters and glamorizes glory day pining rather than understanding that today is what you get to work with.
Parallel with President Lincoln’s analogy, I once penned the following,
“Many would like to have a dog. Upon having one, it’s clear that what they REALLY like is the IDEA of having a dog. Many would like to have a conscious, spiritual life. When presented with the possibility, it’s clear that what they REALLY like is the IDEA of a conscious, spiritual life.”
We say we love progress yet progressive unfoldment isn’t merely technological. It’s spiritual. It isn’t so much a building up as a building out. It’s inclusive and boundary dissolving. What we profess to worship must leap off the pages of books and fuel our values and actions.
In this way, walking our talk becomes our link to survival and ultimate thriving. Practicing the principle of ‘love thy neighbor as thyself’ and ‘with all thy getting, get understanding’, should motivate all of us to rethink our social media activity. What will be the tipping point for us as a species to evolve from wishing things were better to uncovering and recognizing the ‘better’ that has always been there.
Upholding our intentions, choosing and honoring our goals and values is the illuminated choice if we are to ever tilt the scales from a life of conformity and hardship to a life of ceiling-shattering exploration and accomplishment.