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Compassion, kindness but most important Integrity is what people are lacking. It’s downright scary. All we can do is teach our children so we can turn this world around ❤️🙏🏼👏🏼

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Dead on Amy. Dead on. Integrity is lacking and it's frightening. Seeing how so many kids think, what they call normal, is what's so scary. I see it first hand, the individualistic cult of self-importance, and I don't know what will happen from there.

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I am at a loss; I have a hard time these days... Living in this world. I won't stop being me. It just stings a little more than it used to. I too stand up for others, ALL THE TIME. (Strangers, friends, sisters, my mom) It just happens. Before I have a chance to think, I'm levitating with anger at whatever the ugliness is. That will never change... but recently I’m finding it so draining. Draining to find the person I am fighting to defend stand behind me and say nothing. Just stare at the ground or pretend they are fine with whatever is happening to them, at them, around them... it is draining to never see them stand up and say “Yes” That is exactly how I feel, and I will not take it anymore. Show them that I am not just a nosy person jumping in where my help is not wanted. But I will be there again, in a week or two… doing what I do standing up for others, defending those who feel like they do not have a voice or are made to feel less than. . . Just needed to get that out <3

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I too have a hard time, and the writing is just how I cope, I guess. I cannot stop being me, and that feels daunting sometimes in a world that seems to think that "me" is not fitting in right with the new societal "norms." Your word, DRAINING, is exactly what it is.

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founding

“We collect acquaintances over fear of being alone, and then discover that we feel lonely anyways.”

This statement was a brutal truth to face. I was reading a book recently and a character said “this is you pushing me away and this is me sticking” and I realized how quickly I am to create space and distance when things get uncomfortable, rather than share hard truths.

I reflect on relationships I’ve had throughout the past - friends, family, romantic - and realized how easy it is to simply withdraw when something is said or done that I am not comfortable rather than okay with, instead of having the hard conversation and working through it.

I had a friend open up to me once about some things I’d done that had hurt her and I apologized, made it right, and then we moved on. I still think about how confused I felt that she didn’t hold it over me or that it wasn’t more damaging to the relationship. And then I realized that’s how relationships are supposed to be. You’re authentic, you mess up, you get called out, you apologize, you work to be better, you’re forgiven. It made me realize I have a lot of work to do in terms of facing conflict rather than ignoring or hiding from it. I was burning bridges before they had a chance to repair themselves. And I don’t want to do that.

Lots to think on today. Thank you, Tyler, for teaching us the importance of healthy conflict in a world that is screaming at us that mistakes are an end and not a part of the process.

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founding

"And then I realized that’s how relationships are supposed to be. You’re authentic, you mess up, you get called out, you apologize, you work to be better, you’re forgiven." I love this. How do make ammends, how to do a repair. Most of us don't get a ton of practice with this. But we can learn.

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This is so delightfully astute Tori, everything you said after pointing out the brutal truth I wrote of, is so precisely on. Thank YOU for teaching US with your words. They are so welcome and appreciated here.

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I was crying while I read this. I have felt this way for so long now. Society is scary now for what it has become. I gre up in the 70s and 80s and things were so different, but that was before technology, and maybe there's a message in that, who knows. I, too, stand up for others, as you do Tyler, so Thank You. It's refreshing to know there are others out there that have peace and kindness in their hearts. 💗💗

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Janessa, I hate to be the grumpy old man, but I really do think you're right, society has changed, and I feel it, and I cannot always put a perfect finger on it or call it the most accurate name, but it's changed, and it hurts me in weird ways, and I don't know how to deal with it. So I write, I guess, I just write.

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founding

Love this. Thank you for saying it. We all need encouragement. Social media makes it so easy to be mean. But it also makes it easy to be kind. So YES, let's keep inviting forward the better angels of our nature. Let's keep befriending ourselves with unconditional kindness. And let's keep building communities of care and support, because it is hard and sometimes the consequences are real and scary. We see this in the news all the time, brave souls come forward and say the hard thing and then have to go into hiding to protect themselves and their loved ones. Sometimes I think it all comes down to where you happen to exist in the privilege/power structures we all live in, as to how much risk a person can afford to take. And sometimes the in-the-moment harm is so awful you have to speak up anyway, no matter the risk. Thank you for your courage, for caring so deeply about justice for all, and for this community of brave souls.

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You are so right Jen, social media makes it so, so easy to be mean, to be petty, to be morally superior on the surface. Here's to unconditional kindness for ourselves, and the same for others.

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¨I’ve lost count how many times I’ve gotten in trouble for doing the right thing. I don’t have a metric for how many times I’ve been shushed, reprimanded, or told off for saying the truth, when the truth may be an uncomfortable thing for some to hear.¨

I´m behind you dude! ´Beaten for my trouble´ is an actual thing that has happened.

¨When did we start getting into trouble for telling the truth, even when it hurts?¨

Like always? It´s been 21 years since the kickoff of the entire Iraq escapade, and the amount of punishment I´ve absorbed for it has been amazing, especially since everyone came around to agreeing with me. 🙃

¨We’re creating a world of dishonesty, of surface level sugar-coatery, and I don’t want any part of it.¨

´twas ever thus my friend.

¨Take it or leave it, or hell, scream back at me if you think I’m wrong.¨

Good piece! 👍 Although I am sure - certain - have been quite unkind in various scrums - but in the end you have the choice to fight (and I do mean FIGHT) or roll over all too often. So. There it is.

elm

it´s the sheer pointlessness & pettiness of a lot of it that gets to me sometimes

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Beaten for my trouble is such a great way to put it! Your final line is so dead on too, and a scary thing I find my brain drifting too so often. Staying "ok" is a lot haha.

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You've always got my attention with a fire analogy, and this is such a good one. I feel the same way. I don't have much tolerance for dishonesty or surface level living. I prefer quality relationships, even if they are few. I used to look at social media and feel like everyone had more friends than me. But as I've gotten older, I've realized how grateful I am for the people that are in my life and the way those relationships have developed over the years. Quality is so much more important than quantity. And I'm not a person who likes to socialize without a purpose. Small talk has never been my thing. I only have time and energy to invest in truthful, loyal, meaningful connections.

On another note, social media has really been exhausting as of late. So many traps, so many rabbit holes to go down. So much content that has no substance. I've really been trying to be conscious of what I consume and filter out things that drain me. It's a constant battle. Remember when we all just got a newspaper on our doorstep every morning, and that's how we kept up on news? Seemed a lot easier back then. I'm not a fan of our oversaturated world...

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When is fire NOT a good idea for an analogy?! I too prefer quality over quantity, and it's hard how often others do NOT agree. And yes to all you said of social media. I am beyond weary.

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I got very tired of the drama and hate and ugliness from even (mostly) family years ago and I cut them off. I had my say and then “unfriended” and simply blocked them from my life. Over the years, I’ve gradually found that I’m so much more at peace and happier not having them in my life. We speak every so often but I would rather not have a relationship with a person who spews out hate and racism and just ugliness. Sadly, it was mostly family... my mom and my four siblings. I’m still close to a sister-in-law, though she was never even married to my brother, thank god. But I love her and my niece and nephew. I have burned so many bridges and when questioned about building them back, it’s a hard no, never. Not in a million years will I stand with those who are hateful to others. That’s why my family are not my blood... except for my most amazing and empathetic son who I have raised the right way!

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WELL DONE Maureen! I love when people have cut off what no longer serves them, no matter how hard it is. I love your heart, and am proud to read this.

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Last week there were cross-country protests, and simultaneous counter protest, in every major city in Canada, and many smaller ones too, about the rights of trans children in our schools. Hundreds of people shouting in each others faces for hours. Today, I read about ads put up in a Vancouver suburb for a "whites-only mommy and tots group". Posters flagrantly posted on light posts for blocks. In Canada. The land of the pleasant? What the eff is going on people?

This polarization began before the pandemic but the isolation, and the them against us mentality that has ensued since has come to a boiling point and the hatred is brimming over the edge. It is not just in North America either. We are seeing it around the globe with groups who have been living peacefully for centuries together, but different, suddenly fighting to the death. Hindus desecrating Muslim graves. Muslim men beating and killing Muslim women in the streets. We are loosing our empathy. We are going backwards.

One of my all time favourite books is called The Alphabet Vs The Goddess by Leonard Shlain. It speaks about the correlation of how our brains physically changed as we learned how to read and write and that this shift to a more linear thinking caused us to abandon our polytheistic, egalitarian communities for monotheistic societies in which the role of women where diminished. It correlates how at every major advancement in our communication tools, we generally became pretty crappy to each other. Think the advancement of literacy and the Spanish Inquisition; the creation of the printing press and the Witch Hunts; and the invention of the radio and the Second World War. The book was written in 1998 so before our current social media society. It is a really interesting look at the human condition and I often think of it, as we are now in this new realm of how we receive our information from a more visual, right brain focused intake. Have our brains been changed once again? I think it is all too much for the majority of us and it is causing a breakdown. Having instantaneous news of every event happening around the world, around the clock is causing our circuits to overload. Instead of an overwhelming sense of empathy for everyone, many have opted to see it as us vs them. So we see these outbursts of blatant racism, hatred and violence. We watch them everyday from all over the world in the palms of our hands, and it seem like this is all there is. It has become normalized and so people think they can get away with it.

When I saw the video of George Floyd being murdered in front of my very eyes I was horrified and filled with such a deep sadness and dismay. I couldn't fathom how people could all just stand around and not stop it. Not throw themselves onto that cop instead of standing there and filming a man die. On one hand, thank goodness the video exists, since we all know what the outcome would have been if we only had the police's version of the story. But how are we so far apart from each other? How is there such a disconnect from our neighbours and the people we see everyday?

I am not sure I could go back to live in North America. Where people are so very alone and they scream out at the world the most horrible things they can think of just so that they get some sense of interaction. Like a child starved for love and attention acting out so that someone, anyone will react to them. We see it on the Internet and in real life and it is a heartbreaking state of affairs that I am not sure how to fix. As loving and empathetic as I am, these people make me angry and I am very quick to call it out whenever I am faced with it in real life. I don't even bother to read comment sections on the internet. It isn't healthy.

I have been thinking about what I would write in response to this post and needed the day to really process my thoughts. I agree that we need to stand up and call these people who spread fear and hate out. But how do we do this without causing even more polarization? Because if we burn down all the bridges, we will all be left on our own islands once again. How do find our common ground that unites us?

Aliens. Pretty sure it will be aliens.

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I ABSOLUTELY have to read the book you mentioned, and honestly Heather, this is all so scary. As you said, if even Canada has this much vitriol, we are in so much trouble.

As for the aliens, I am now more fearful that the aliens will take one step here, and get the f away because they cannot fathom how to live in a place with so much hatred.

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It’s my all time favourite book. Also read the Empathetic Civilization. The go well together!

I think aliens already do exactly that. We are pure Jerry Springer content on an astral level sadly. We won’t even make good pets!

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The Alphabet Vs The Goddess by Leonard Shlain - Finding this asap Thank you for your words!

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https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/books/330913/the-alphabet-versus-the-goddess-by-leonard-shlain/

Here’s the link to the publisher’s profile for the book. There is a lecture on YouTube too that’s pretty interesting too if you google the name!

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Thanks!

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And here’s a cool video on the other book I mentioned that I love! https://youtu.be/xjarMIXA2q8?feature=shared

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After reading through these comments, probably the most important one for me is “teach our children “. What better example than to be that person who mentors integrity, loyalty, goodness, honesty, compassion, consequences, love, fairness, and probably one of the most important to me is responsibility…..teach that OUR actions are OURS and we are rresponsible for those actions , excuses are becoming the norm… this signal fire was a good one…lots to ponder, make changes….

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Tyler, your hands tell me that you have the soul of an innovator, a rebel, and the utmost integrity. This is a rare combination! It’s why you will always speak truth, blaze trails, and wonder about apathy. It’s all a gift to help others wake up. 🙏🏻😘

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