Just a few minutes ago…
Someone posted a saying that consisted of 13 words. I just saw it this morning. You read it, think about it, consider it’s importance, look at the alternative viewpoints, and adjust it to mean something for you. It may be wise, even wiser than you first think, but hang on to it long enough and the saying becomes something you identify with. Possibly.
“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are”
is the heading under a photo on Instagram.
Not a bad phrase. “We see things from our own perspective of how we view ourselves.” Probably a decent translation. Yes? Maybe we should consider it from a deeper position of knowledge? That’s when I like to drill deeper to determine who first stated a version of this so we can give them some “attaboy’s” and attribution. Some may call this the action of a “word smith” but I appreciate the concept of a “quote smith”.
This quote is often referenced as coming from one particular author, but reality shows it has deeper roots. Even religious roots. Go ahead. Drill down. Click HERE and read about it.
As I was thinking this through this morning, I realized we all live our lives by “truths” that we attempt to capsulize into one-liners. Some are complex, others simple. Some are golden, others are pearls. Regardless of the title you give them, these one-liners often keep us on a straight and narrow path of actions and reactions.
Some for the good, and the others might not be so good!
For example: Someone says they stand for everybody, wear the shirts to declare it, march the marches to prove it, but their words, quotes, one-liners and actions leave out a huge majority of the population. I can read between the lines. You only stand for those you identify with. Otherwise, some very near and dear folks will be ignored. Missed. And tossed to the side. Like one-liners that no longer fit your world.
It’s okay to define your world by one-liners, but you should be prepared to defend them and determine if they are true only for you, a select group of similar thinkers, or for everyone. How do you learn to defend them?
- Think them through.
- Talk them out.
- Argue them among your friends, and then strangers.
- Consider the audience and each person’s perspective, if possible.
- Research alternative words and ideas.
- Adjust the one-liners and your position as needed.
- Make sure they are built on a foundation you believe enough to fight for.
But when you finally get it personified, then be prepared to live by it totally.
As you declare your one-liner, realize you’ve probably missed a perspective. Or two. Or forty. Do you include and adjust? Or do you simply ignore and move on? Most, I suspect, will follow the path of least resistance and continue to attract like minded believers. Eventually their numbers become large enough to challenge the status quo of the world they live in. Will it be enough to change the world? Maybe. For the better? Time will tell. Will it be in your lifetime? Probably not. This is an issue, I suspect, that many do not consider the future of their actions, because the world keeps changing into something they cannot comprehend.
Do one-liners stay the same? Depends on you, I guess – your nationality, politics, religion, ethnicity, culture, birth order, gender, and probably a number of other descriptors I have skipped over. Some believe in an order of politics and everything they present follows a somewhat prescribed view of the world. While others follow a religion and this presents them as a labeled whole. But it’s hard to define the individual. Some will never fit into a cookie cutter view of their labels. Within “their” politics, religions (and the entire list above), they stand with individuality. Their once accepted view of their label cannot be comprehended by the way they think and act….
I suspect many of us defined our beliefs and captured some one-liners to define us…at an early age. And that might even include your second childhood! What you learned in the home of your parents or caregivers set a foundation, but often those change when you are launched into the deep of the human experience. Many I know define themselves while their brain is still growing, and scientists define that to be somewhere in the mid-20’s. Though the brain may repair itself with new neural connections for a long time, it seems like the stance of life is taken by the time you hit your 30’s.
“Surprise. Surprise. Surprise!” in the voice of Gomer Pyle, USMC…
My one-liners come from a shaping of time, politics, religion and a season filled with very wise people around me. It is my hope that my life is lived by a quality of Christian principles, historical knowledge, foundational views that are well thought out and exampled in this modern age. But I’ve learned one thing over the past few years that that presents a one-liner for you to consider. This may be transformational. It fits my generation to a “T” and I suspect every generation before me has felt it, and all those new and future generations will someday state it.
The more radical and different we become, the less I care to fit in.
It’s almost the view of Solomon as he reached the ending of his life.
And moreover, because the Preacher was wise,
he still taught the people knowledge;
yes, he pondered and sought out and set in order many proverbs.
The Preacher sought to find acceptable words;
and what was written was upright—words of truth.
The words of the wise are like goads,
and the words of scholars are like well-driven nails,
given by one Shepherd.
And further, my son, be admonished by these.
Of making many books there is no end,
and much study is wearisome to the flesh.
Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter:
Fear God and keep His commandments,
For this is man’s all.
For God will bring every work into judgment,
Including every secret thing,
Whether good or evil.
(Ecclesiastes 12:9-14 NKJV)