A little disclaimer here. This is how I think, I’m not trying to tell anybody else how to think, the government or the powers that be do a good enough job of that, these are simply my humble thoughts. If you don’t think like me, great, like Temple Grandin once said, the world needs all kinds of minds, and I agree wholeheartedly. So I’m not trying to tell anybody what to think and I’m not trying to say that I’m right and others who think differently to me are wrong, I don’t even recognise right or wrong in this sense. All our thoughts, are right for each one of us no matter how different they are from somebody else’s. They’re all right, equal and they’re all vital to each of us. Nobody can tell anybody that they’re wrong. I’ve had 50 years of people trying to tell me that I was wrong, and they never succeeded.
Thoughts are like soldiers. The soldiers in the First World War were vulnerable and open to be taken out at any given moment when they were above the trenches, out in the open. My great grandad used to say that often when the men went out from the trenches, they were so cold, tired and hungry, that they almost welcomed death, they had lost the will to live let alone fight, at this stage.
However, when they were in the trenches, they felt a level of protection. They were hard to defeat. They would hunker down and were almost invisible to the enemy line and the longer they hunkered down, the harder they came to be removed.
If we deal with our thoughts when they appear, out in the open, vulnerable and fresh, we have the opportunity to take out any offending thoughts as they arise. However, when they hanker down and get deeply entrenched in our deeper mind, they become invisible to the conscious mind and are therefore harder to root out. However, although the deeper thoughts are now invisible, they are no less dangerous. In fact, like the soldiers in the trenches, they are more dangerous.
When I was younger, I used to be obsessed about getting to the bottom of these thoughts. Without realising it, all I was actually doing was burying them deeper and establishing them firmly in my mindset so that they eventually became beliefs on which I based the whole of my life. So after a while, I was seeing the world through the lens of these disturbing, unhelpful and even harmful thoughts. They coloured my world view and they became my world view and I couldn’t understand me or the world around me.
It’s taken me many more years to uncover and root out the destructive thoughts that held me captive and I now deal with the new thoughts when they arise, while they’re still fresh and at their most vulnerable. I no longer allow these thoughts to rule my life. I have reclaimed my own values and world view and no longer accept those of others.
For example, our society is based on the premise that money holds more value than human life. From this premise, it is easy to see the justification for wars and killing people. After all, the taking of a human life is not important compared to what is really important in life, money, and wars are always about power and control, i.e. getting more money. I never bought into this belief. I know many people, the majority of people in this society in fact, value money over human life and they are therefore quite justified for killing a man for his money. I never saw what others saw in money and I still don’t, but I don’t condemn a man for his love of money, to him, money is everything, as my understanding of what god is to me. I understand now why people love making money, how they love hoarding it, going to any lengths to get it and not caring who they hurt along the way. Why would they? ~ care about human lives that is. Human lives have little more importance than the dirt beneath their shoes (which is highly valuable (to me), but has no value to them as dirt probably costs less than a human life, which is already way down low in terms of what’s valuable and important in life), so what harm is it to take out a few people, or more, now and again, for whatever reason, it doesn’t even have to be about money. The human life is way down low, below most things in life but always below money. I see so many people clearly demonstrate their values in their everyday lives. They do jobs they hate, that make them miserable, that make them miserable to be around and they do jobs that reduce their health. Yet it’s ok, because they have their eye on the prize. The pay packet at the end of the month. They get their elixir. And I understand that now. Of course they don’t mind being miserable and unhappy because they’ve got the very thing they live for. I’m no different to them. I would go to any lengths to protect my integrity and would go to any lengths to help another human being. I have. And I have gotten into a whole lot of trouble for this. So now, it’s not that I would give any less of my life for another, but that I am learning to work smarter. And it’s easier now I understand that others really are just like me. They love their god just as much as I love mine and we would both go to any lengths to get and protect our gods. We are just the same, we just have different goals or values.
I was getting so entrenched with all these thoughts about money (that I still don’t understand but I do now accept that it is god for the majority of people and that is as perfect for them as my idea of god is for me) and the thoughts of wars and killings, that the very thoughts I was considering, we’re killing me from the inside enemy line, I just couldn’t see it. But I’ve cleared the decks now, I’ve got everything straight. Some people, the majority of people, so I wouldn’t even be able to argue that they were wrong, even if I thought they were, which I don’t, love money. Money is their god and coming close to that, is all the things they can buy with their money, all this new food type stuff that isn’t always made with just food, but other things as well, all the chemicals and pharmaceuticals that make them feel better after eating all that stuff that they call food, all the cars and houses and clothes and make up that they buy, whatever they buy really. I’ve come to see that it seems that whatever money can buy is good although it then begins to get confusing because some of these things have more value than others. Lol! I stop right there. I have learned to no longer interrogate the hell out of everything and accept that there are some things in life that I will never understand so I just have to accept them. And it seems the majority of the world understands the rules to where these things stand in the area of importance, like they know the rules of social interaction. I don’t understand either and my freedom came from realising that I don’t have to understand. Autism taught me that. Getting my diagnosis was a total game changer for me. I no longer have to try and understand people because it seems to me that we’re all the same, we simply have different values. The majority of people value money and all it can buy and I value human life and all it can bring. Everything seems to be an industry these days. Religion has always been one and now the market is open for the industry of spirituality. It all evolves around god, aka money. Everything makes so much sense to me now. I feel so much safer in the world. I don’t feel like I have to ‘get my point’ across anymore, to defend myself. And this love of money isn’t just at the heart of nt’s, it’s also at the heart of many nd’s and I could never make my autistic brother’s and sisters wrong, lol, even if at first I thought they were.
I think I’ve found my peace. We are all the same, we just hold different values or we hold different things to be of value to us and that is just beautiful. Before I got my diagnosis, I thought everybody thought the same as me. I only got my diagnosis in late October last year, and already the world has become much clearer to me. I was operating under the impression that everybody thought like me so I couldn’t understand why people would say the things they did. I understand them now and I apologies to everyone I’ve ever spoken to. I can see I must have looked like a total mad woman. But can you imagine, I thought people valued life over everything else, when they didn’t, they valued money. So I thought they were just being mean to me and trying to wind me up by saying things that clearly went against this value. Such as talking about the justifications for war etc. My poor brother in law. I had him pitched as the ultimate winder upper. I thought he was intentionally out to wind me up. I could never understand why people wanted to do that. What they got out of it. I felt persecuted, like the black sheep, the one everyone wanted to pick on and make fun of. But I see now that neither he nor any of the others were trying to get at me. They were speaking honestly, from their own values, which were not like mine so of course there would be confusion. I guess because nobody else thought like me I was also fighting with the possibility that I could be wrong, that of course money is more valuable than human life. How could I be so dumb! What I’ve realised is that nobody is wrong and nobody is right and we don’t have to fall out now, because I understand you. By understanding my autism and realising that not everybody thinks like me, I can see where our point of contention came in.
Phew! Glad I sorted that one out. I’m starting to feel that gentle compassionate and tender love for people, in a way that I witnessed when I was in Australia. WoW, this is pretty big. S**t, I think I’m gonna have a melt down. I think I need to take a moment. It’s ok , I’ve got this. This is not a meltdown, this relates to what I was saying in the beginning about our thoughts being like soldiers. My immediate thought pattern then, in less than a second probably. Was, OMG you’re going to be good with people now, that means you’re going to have to spend more time with them, you won’t have any excuse now. But I caught it. It’s not true. Just because I’m going to get along better with people from now on, it doesn’t mean I have to spend more time with them, it’s my autism that makes me not be comfortable being around too many people too often. It just means that when I am around people, I will get on with them a lot better. I will filter everything they say through the filter of money is god, and then, I’ll be able to understand them a whole lot more and I won’t just think they’re trying to wind me up! I feel like that person who’s suddenly horrified to realise that they’re the last person to realise they have this thing! Only I’m not horrified. I feel at peace. Maybe I’ll never speak at all, ever again (typical aspie mind, black and white). But seriously, what’s the point? I don’t mean that in a negative light, on the contrary, I’m quite delighted at the prospect. I have loved the occasions I have gone mute, but I’ve never been able to bring that on with conscious effort. I once taped my mouth up at work, but got told off for it and got told to take the tape off as it made other people uncomfortable and they didn’t think I could do my job properly if I didn’t participate in their endless complaints and trivia. They even thought I might not answer the phone to clients or that I was never going to talk to a client again. The clients weren’t the problem (mental health team), it was the staff. But they wouldn’t stop talking to me with all this atrocious nonsense, so I stopped talking. But it didn’t work. I managed only about half a day of luxury before they made me take off my home made mask. Humans are benefits driven creatures. What is the point of talking to somebody who doesn’t speak your language? The only benefit could be if the other person has something you want. Then it might be worth the effort to try to establish some level of understanding and communication between you both so you get what you want. You don’t have to speak the same language for that. I’ve been in places where nobody speaks my language (English) and I still got what I wanted. You could speak to another to learn more about their world but to be honest, I’m over that. I know the world that is ruled by money, in as much as I want to and my world is so far removed from most peoples that they wouldn’t even begin to imagine that they might want to know anything about mine, they don’t even think it exists, so they’re not going to want to know about a world that doesn’t exist! Lol! I understand that now.
Maybe I’ll just be the mad tree lady, who lives in the forest, talking only to the trees and birds, nature and the wild life and my dog and cat of course. I think Chris Packham got it right. Live in a forest, hunker in, like the soldiers, and you’ll be safe.
BlueRay said:I’ve had 50 years of people trying to tell me that I was wrong, and they never succeeded.
I have an atlas at home. I find the contents pages useful. There's a page showing all of the continents and I've used that to see where one country is in relation to others and in the global perspective.
If I turn to the pages for Europe, I can see Britain right up in the corner in a little more detail than on the global perspective, now I can see some islands around Britain but only the bigger ones, not the one I live on.
Next I turn to the UK pages to see much more detail such as cities and towns and finally my home island is shown there, it's a blob but at least it's there now! Then further detail such as villages on the Scotland pages and my island finally takes shape, and so on and so on ...
On Google maps I can narrow that down further and further ... until I'm looking at a street view with individual houses, street signs etc etc. If I want MORE detail, I go there. I visit the place, go inside the building, meet the people, smell the grass, feel the carpet fibres and taste the coffee there.
If I ask someone for advice on a temperate climate to live in, I would expect them to direct me to the World Map, showing all of the possible continents I might move to. If i ask for advice on which passing place on my home island has the most comfortable rock to sit on I'd get pretty FRUSTRATED at someone who directed me to a World Map.
I think, from my own short experience, that's what I've seen happening with a few discussions. Someone asks for advice about a more comfortable rock and they're given advice about the global climate fluctuations. It seems to me just a bit of a mix up from each of us using different maps and ending up losing each other a little.
What I'm hoping to find one day is an atlas of the emotional landscape because that's the one I keep getting lost in!
I’ve had 50 years of people trying to tell me that I was wrong, and they never succeeded ~ I tried, I tried so hard, I tried dearly to understand and love money and possessions etc the way that other people do but no matter how I looked at it or how hard I tried, I just couldn’t do it, so it’s not from a lack of trying. If someone can show me how money is more valuable than life, than human life, then I will listen with an open heart and mind because it would sure as hell make my life much easier if I could value money in the same way that others do. For example, I would love to know what it feels like to think that winning the lottery is a wonderful thing ~ I might start playing it each week and join in the fun. I’m open to listening, but so far, nobody has been able to show me that money is more valuable than human life. I have been told that I’m wrong to value life over money but the people telling me I’m wrong have so far failed to show me why I’m wrong. There’s nothing else I think I’m right about, everything else I see as transient so I don’t see how I could ever be right or wrong about any of it but my belief that human life is more valuable than money is the one thing I stick to, it’s what I base my whole life on.
If you can show me that poverty exists then of course I will believe it. So far, I’ve found no evidence of poverty existing. To me, it’s an idea, something that is real if you believe in it and not real if you don’t. I definitely live in what society considers to be poverty which therefore makes me poor, but there’s not one ounce of me that feels poor. So am I poor? Maybe I am and I am delusional. It doesn’t actually make any difference to me, to think of my self as poor, I just tried it and it just sounds like I’m saying a silly thing to myself. I think it goes back to basic values. If money is god and I believed that, then yes, I guess I would say that I was poor and I would know that I’m poor and that I live in poverty but when money isn’t your god, it’s hard to get your head around it. It’s like I just can’t get my brain to see it, as hard as I try and I do try.
Spot on and so beautifully said Endymion. I probably like your analogy (if that’s the right word) so much because I love globes and atlases and google maps lol. I spend hours looking at all the different countries etc and where they are in relation to each other. This has been a life long obsession of mine from as far back as I can remember and I still love it just as much now as I did back then,
I feel that today, I’ve found, in a big part at least, my atlas to my emotional landscape which is the one area that gobbled me up and got me lost the most. I’m not saying it’s all plain sailing for me but I feel like I’m getting a grasp on it. Keep looking, you’ll find yours. Talking on this forum has helped me tremendously in this area. When I first came here I wanted to die, that’s how I found this site. But today, I can’t imagine why I ever felt like that, even though it’s been a recurring theme, all my life, from being a little girl. But I feel so much more at peace now, especially knowing I never have to try to fit in ever again. Trying to fit in was screwing me up and I’m free of that now and that’s huge for me. To finally see that I was right, that I have got the right to chose what’s most important for me in life, even if every other person on the planet doesn’t share my idea of what’s most valuable in life. I think we’ve all got the right to choose that and no ones choice is better than another’s, so long as it’s right for them, that’s all that matters.
I don't disagree with where you're coming from BlueRay, but only because I've spoken with you in a little more depth about both our perspectives in the past and it allowed me to understand a little more about where you're coming from and what your perspective is.
I do think, from my perspective, yours sometimes comes across as an excellent World Map (a lot of your ideas are actually quite appealing to me) but when I try to use your map to get me from a side-road to the beach - it just doesn't help me. It doesn't work for me. I need to choose one of my other maps. Yours isn't 'wrong' it just doesn't feature what I'm trying to find, it seems to only show me the big picture but (for me) is fuzzy on the details.
I can't see how your 'map' is relevant to practical applications such as discussions about the day-to-day difficulties of poverty or frustrations over practical social difficulties. I'd use your 'map' instead to navigate how I cope with bereavement or other things more related to feelings, emotions and general philosophy of life questions. I think it's just a matter of deciding which 'page' a person is on so that we can decide which 'map' is most relevant to them.
Am i making any sense here?
I think it was Carl Jung that said ‘Individuation enables unity…’ (or something similar.) And I have always understood this to mean that when we fully accept and acknowledge our own subjectivity (that there is no ‘One Truth...’) and upon doing so we therefore, in turn, then naturally appreciate and respect the subjectivity of others too, we become closer to everyone (humanity) as a result. I.e. upon Individuation, transcendence is inevitable.
Honestly, this is how I feel. I have never heard this quote before. Today, when I realised that it was simply just that I was coming from a different value base from everybody else, it’s like I felt this, I want to say overwhelming rush but it didn’t feel overwhelming or like a rush, of such sweet and tender love towards others, that I haven’t felt before. It’s the same kind of love I witnessed when I was in Australia last year and I honestly felt I would never feel that way towards others. But today, it just came over me.
Once I realised that my life was simply based on different values to most other people, it’s like everything changed. I never thought that I was right and they were wrong, it was just all so confusing to me, I thought people were out to get me because I honestly thought they all thought the same way as me and held the same values as me. Now I know they don’t, it’s like everything has changed. Like a barrier has been removed. I feel so calm and peaceful. I feel like I can really begin to enjoy my burnout now, now the crazy mind chatter has calmed down! Lol!
I still think there is only one truth but I also see that other peoples views and values are equally right and valid. It’s not that I never thought they weren’t, just that I had no idea that anybody actually did think differently from me! Lol! I didn’t know there was another view point. I can see now how I let their thoughts get so mingled in with mine. I thought we were all coming from the same premise. I highly appreciate and respect the subjectivity of others, it is through others that I have come to know myself and today was something else!
I’ve got Carl Jung’s biography, which is really interesting, but I haven’t finished it yet. I can’t read for too long before the words and the letters start dancing around and refusing to let me read them! lol! It’s been highly interesting so far though. Thank you, again
BlueRay said:If you can show me that poverty exists then of course I will believe it.
Poverty exists, in the most extreme sense, when people are starving, have no protection from the elements, and their health is deteriorating or their life ending, as a result.
Thus we have in society (amongst others) intellectual poverty and financial poverty, which are evident in most villages, towns and cities ~ given that proportions of people from young to old are dying due to not having enough money or the wherewithal to maintain their psychological and physiological health, such as their body temperature for instance in the current climate.
Another form of poverty is for example social poverty ~ where people are socially or personally isolated to an unhealthy extent, even up to the point of being motivated to attempt or succeed in the act of suicide.
BlueRay said:So am I poor?
I would venture to write that in some respects you are, in other respects you are not, just as much as you are both, and neither, in other respects ~ as depends upon which level and perspective of poverty and wealth is being considered, or discussed.
Acceptance is utterly and profoundly beautiful.
I have this belief that depression is really a type of grieving; a deep hearted, soul raking, mourning. Mourning the absence of meaning. And that the losses we are grieving that robbed us of meaning, that can steal away our very reason to be here, can be obvious, like losing a job, a house, friendships, relationships; but our losses can be less obvious things too, such as loss of a belief, a hope, a dream, a facade, a persona, an ideal...and that these losses are just as important, if not fundamentally more so, but can be much harder to pinpoint and navigate our way through.
And when grieving, we may journey through all the stages of shock, rage, denial, bargaining and despair, again and again sometimes. But I realise, on reflection, that when you reach the very last stage of grief, which is acceptance, this is when 'healing' really begins.
When I truly accepted (and named, identified) the things I had painfully lost; and accepted my losses, I too then saw the day in a whole new light. Just as you have described.
And it was beautiful.
This world, other people, really are all indescribably beautiful.
Endymion said:What I'm hoping to find one day is an atlas of the emotional landscape because that's the one I keep getting lost in!
Learning the difference between emotional feelings and emotive reproductions can be rather useful in terms of not mistaking the emotional map for the actual territory, in emotional terms.
Tina Turner once wrote and sang for instance that "Love was a second hand emotion", which as such involved a "Lust For Power" as for many displaces love, or replaces it for however long, or however badly for some, such as involving normalised or excessive abuse and all that.