The way you keep someone small, dissatisfied, and incomplete is by
preventing them from and / or by distracting them from and / or by
discouraging them from experiencing and / or getting to know the
Listen: Perhaps that's not the way you think I should say that.
Perhaps the way you think I should say that is like this: "The way you
keep someone small, dissatisfied, and incomplete is by preventing them
from and / or by distracting them from and / or by discouraging them
from experiencing and / or getting to know them-self.".
But they're not the same. They're not even close. In fact if I said it
the latter way, I wouldn't be saying the same thing. I would actually
be saying something entirely different.
For the most part we regard the world in which we live as a "you
or me" world. In a you or me world, for
me to win, you have to lose - or vice versa. In a you or me world, for
me to look good, you have to look bad - or vice versa. In a you or me
world, my success doesn't include your success - or vice
versa. So for the most part, the world in which we live today
is a you or me world because we regard it as a you or
me world. The typical fare served up in the news on television and
in the press speaks eloquently to the unviable, unworkable state of
affairs of a you or me world.
Part of the illusion, if you will, which keeps the you or me
world in place is our apparent separation as human beings. What this
separation looks like is each of us appears as a separate bag of skin
enclosing an entity which, for the purposes of this conversation, I'll
call a "self" - a "self" as in my-self, your-self,
our-selves, them-selves etc. But in a you or me world,
when I experience or get to know theSelf
as distinct from my-self, then because there's no
for what the
(as distinct from my-self) really is in a you or me world, it's
viewed as being separatist, as being elitist, as being a threat
to the other skin bag selves in the group at large, which is to say a
threat to the other skin bag selves' identities. In
religious fundamentalists' ways of looking at Life,
there's often no recognizing the
at all. And the irony of experiencing or getting to know the
in a you or me world being seen as separatist or being seen as elitist
or being seen as simply unholy is it's the you or me world
which sees us as separate bags of skin enclosing a self to begin with -
a perfect model of separatism and elitism.
The illusion which holds this view in place is so
so basic that it's seldom looked at and even more rarely
is it inquired into. The illusion is that somehow what I experience,
what I get to know as the
is different than ie is separate from what you experience, what you get
to know as the
In a you or me world, experiencing or getting to know the
is often construed as "self-ish" - which is a truism if
ever there was one, but a truism which disparages the
rather than celebrates and embraces it.
Looking at this closer, I come to the
conclusion that it's the you or me world itself which is the illusion.
The truth about our world, whether fully appreciated or not, is that it
is, was, and always will be a "you and me" world.
If your end of the canoe tips over, we both
end up in the water. This view of things may be poignant but it's not
oversimplified. We live in a you and me world which we're
erroneously running according to the rules of a you or me
world. Is it any wonder things aren't
as well as they were designed to
You can't play "Plenty And Enough For Everyone" according
to the rules of "Winner Take All Five Card Stud".
In a you and me world, the quaint idea that there's a separate self
each of our skin bags is not only plainly fallacious - it's also
obsolete. In a you and me world,
is actually predicated on experiencing and getting to know
who we each really
- and each of us as that same
Remember: if your end of the canoe tips over, we
all end up in the water. I assert you already knew that.
But because you're human, you forgot it. And because you're human, you
can recall it and recreate it again any time you want to.
In this sense, the erstwhile distinctions "selfish" and "selfishness"
have no place in a you and me world, that is if they're not also
entirely inapplicable in the
of a you and me world. Selfishness is as inapplicable to a you and me
world as a bicycle is to a fish (as Patricia Irene "Irina" Dunn may
have said). Selfishness only
in a you or me world. In a you and me world
there's no such thing as selfishness.