Sunday, December 9, 2007

Musings: Connections

Awoke with a headache today after too much sugar last night, so took a short walk with Koko in the silent gray of a cloudy Sunday morning and we both went back to bed. Dreamed of a Kauai with drilling rigs in the reef, decaying oceanfront mansions and an aerial gondola occupied by a smattering of tourists, although every other bucket carried a sharpshooter, patrolling the place. Needless to say, my headache was worse.

But New Dimensions, one of my favorite radio shows, carried a program that helped set me right. Buddhism teacher Sylvia Boorstein, speaking on the topic of “Our Natural Goodness,” made the observation that “when we’re not pre-occupied with self-serving things … we’re compassionate animals …. and those thoughts invigorate me as a human being.”

She went on to say, “it’s all about connection,” and that made me think of UH Warriors quarterback Colt Brennan. While waiting to interview a local restaurateur yesterday afternoon, I happened to see Colt interviewed on TV for the Heisman Trophy award ceremony.

Colt said, and I’m paraphrasing here, that he came to Hawaii looking for a change, and was gratified to discover that it didn’t matter what kind of car he drove, or if he had money. Only his character counted, Colt said, and if you’re a good person, the Islanders will take you in.

Colt’s observations made me think about the comments left by Gadfly on this blog, comments that frequently belittle the local lifestyle and kanaka maoli beliefs, especially those related to burials; comments that celebrate his accumulation of wealth and choice to live apart from the greater community, laughing with the other segregated ex-pats at the eccentricities of the inferior local culture.

Both Colt and Gadly came here from someplace else. Colt recognized the value of community and embraced local culture, and in return, he’s been embraced. Gadly, like so many others who pick Hawaii for reasons of climate and recreation and have no interest in local people and culture, chose instead to hold himself apart, and so he has not been embraced. It seems the current economic conditions are attracting more people like Gadfly to the Islands than Colt.

Today, I found a comment from Gadfly in my inbox that asserted: “As much as we intellectualize about broader horizons, we all live in a small world of our own making. I absoutely [sic] love mine. I'm sure you love yours too.”

He’s right. We do each live in a world of our making, defined by our own perception of reality. Some of our worlds are large, with open doors and low walls, and people, ideas and feelings flowing in and out, freely; other worlds are small and closed, like prisons.

We’re all free to choose the world we live in, and no one can make anyone else choose something different. Still, I can’t help but believe that as compassionate animals at heart, we’re all going to benefit from a little more connection, and not only with our fellow Homo sapiens.

That’s why I share my observations of nature here, along with the politics, and I’m grateful that Gadfly and the rest of you read this blog and sometimes add your comments, too. Because it really is all about connection — which Gadfly obviously wants, too, or else he wouldn't write in — even if it’s not always easy or comfortable or agreeable or smooth.

Finally, since we’re out in woo-woo land here already, I want to advise everyone that Jupiter will be connecting with Pluto on Tuesday, putting a lot of energy and force behind the next Jupiter cycle. It's a powerful opportunity to change your world, if you desire, by getting conscious about what you want in your life for the next 13 years.

Here's to peace, connections and positive vibrations.

5 comments:

gadfly said...

Wow. I've made it to "the medium time" being featured in one of your "Musings".

I do enjoy how you seguay (sp?..don't know/care) from your morning observations of the environment to the real subject at hand. It's obvious you are a very talented writer.

Since "perception is reality" - a foundation of 19th century sociology (more correctly stated: "if an event is perceived as real it will be real in its consequences") still alive and well in the 21st - I must mention the differences of our perceptions of my reality.

For "community and people" persons such as yourself, I'm sure it does seem prison-like. But, to us (my wife and I), it isn't prison-like at all. It is a vast array of wonderous natural beauty, just typically unpopulated by people for the most part.

That's why we live in the center of a vast area surrounded by no people. That's why the things we love to do involve only the two of us...hiking...diving...kayaking...photography...tennis....travel (on our own, of course).

Even when people are there, they aren't really there ("reality" being the nebluous thing it is, after all) due to a highly-developed nack for social and psychological distance.

Its interesting that I've spent my educational and professional career in the behavioral sciences since I'm not a "people person". I suppose it's becaure I'm more an "outside observer", carefully developing the professional detatchment necessary in the work I did.

I suppose it's also a function of being just a few percentile points this side of "sociopath" on most psychological instruments.

I'm much better at talking "to" people than talking "with" them...analyze, define, report, get paid, move on.

But, anyway, each person's world is what his/her mind says it is, within certain boundaries, of course. Mine involves an ultra private gated McMansion with a "back yard" big as the whole world, only a plane ride away (and soon, a ferry ride).

If I had to do it all over again, I wouldn't change a thing based on how it's turned out so far.

My editorial comments on "life's grand pageant" that I observe unfolding before me are obviously from my own point of view with no regard for how it will be taken. After all, I'm not getting paid for this.

To all the gentle readers out there:

I am an equal opportunity abuser, however, as shown by one of my fav jokes:

Know why Mexico doesn't have an Olympic team and America does? Because anyone who could run, jump or swim is already here!

I even opined on Poinography that naked woman poi wrestling could open up new marketing avenues for that otherwise disgusting stuff.

If I get your blood boiling as I rape your delicate sensibilities in my various irreverent postings, think of it as exercise.

I'm having a lot of fun. I could emerge as the "shock jock" of blog commenters.

Doug said...

... Or, gadfly could wind up censored. Heh.

Anonymous said...

The more attention Gadfly gets, the more vulgar and abusive he becomes. So let's ignore him. I hereby vow to not respond to Gadfly's posts from this moment on.

Anonymous said...

Squawk! The gadfly dropped his cheese.

Joan said...

As I've mentioned before, Gadfly, this is a peace and love blog, and abuse is not acceptable here, nor is racism, nor is shock jock kine stuff. So do remember that as Doug said, you could just wind up getting censored.