can do attitude

bars can't stop sun 357w - January 17, 2016m

“Shakespeare reminds us that though we may not do what we want, we are responsible for our lives…

“It does not matter what has been made of us; what matters is what we ourselves make of what has been done to us.”
        — Chris Hedges, from War is a Force that Gives Us Meaning

To me, the above passage is truly “positive thinking”.  I prefer it over those messages that tell us to create our own reality.

Yes, we can create our own reality—to certain degree.

But that degree can be severely limited by many factors.

For instance:

…if you grow up without the benefit of education…and/or the benefit of food…

….if you live under a constant threat of violence…

…if your country is invaded and occupied…

…if your government is massively corrupt…

…if your government does all it can to control its people…

…if your government is controlled by corporations who are destroying your environment, your way of life…

…if you live under such injustice, but know that if you speak up, you will likely be crushed.

If you’re dealing with any or all of the circumstances above, then the slogan “create your own reality” may seem like a rude joke…

And a large portion of the world’s population is dealing with any or all of the circumstances above.  So perhaps that slogan—that concept—doesn’t belong in our new mythology.

Yes, many have benefited by applying that concept to their life situation…

Still, I think the passage from Hedges may be of more use to most:

What do I do with what I’ve been handed in life?

What do I do if I find myself in a severely-limited life situation?  If my opportunities to escape that situation are severely limited, what can I do?

The above passage tells us: we do have some control.  We do have some amount of choice.  Our choice is in how we react.

The above passage tells us: in our struggle to find ways to deal with the situation, we can become great…

…though perhaps we will only be secretly great.

© 2015, Michael R. Patton

dream steps: the blog

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About Michael Patton

I am a poet, novelist, essayist, cartoonist, graphic artist, peace miller, new mythologist, and fledgling world citizen.... I grew up in Northwest Arkansas and have lived and worked all over the United States.... I'm self-taught, for the most part--which is like searching for the right door in the dark. It's an on-going process.... I don't want to write MY story, I want OUR story, so that's what I'm studying: the human story: past, present, future, in its many aspects--including the spiritual. I'm proceeding at a slow crawl.... I don't see the inner world and outer world as separate. By learning about myself, I learn about others, I learn about my world.... Conversely, as I struggle to understand what I see OUT THERE, I learn about myself.... But to be clear: I don't claim any special understanding. I'm still purblind, still only half-awake.... After frustrating experience with the publisher of my first novel, I've published on my own, beginning with e-books, with plans to move into print and audio. Even video.... Along with a second novel, I've now published eight books of poetry. Each poetry book focuses on a theme. For instance, the collection GLORIOUS TEDIOUS TRANSFORMATION is about the slow difficult wonderful process of change.... In that book, as with all my work, I try to be accessible to a general audience, while also striving to achieve a certain literary quality.
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