There are a few quotes that give me serious pause when I see them – and not in a good way. Let me explain what you sound like when you use them…
There are some beliefs so stupid that only academics and the college
brainwashed educated can justify them. “Privilege” is a lazy generalization that accounts for no demographic truth, economic differentiation, or sociocultural individuation. It is one of those quotes people use to make themselves sound intelligent while silencing the recipient of the phrase. “Privilege” is ad hominem/genetic fallacy. And it is ironic. You see, the speaker is trying to say that you are in error by you having made blanket statements about a member of an “oppressed” group of which you are not a part, making literally every single thought you have automatically suspect – itself a blanket statement about you, a member of a group over which you have no control. The meaning is “do not speak about these topics because you were born under certain circumstances.” I have always been of the strong opinion that those things we cannot change are those we should not be criticized for, whether it be skin color, sex, et cetera. When someone criticizes your speech based on inherent traits that you cannot change, it is probably time to just ignore them, because they undermine their own arguments. Circling back to the patronizing originator of the phrase, isn’t it also funny that it is their educational “privilege” which has given them this silly idea? Aren’t we all lucky that those who believe in privilege know better than everyone else what distinct groups of people believe and need in life? Aren’t we lucky that these people know our experiences based on our skin color, sex, race, beliefs better than we do?
“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein
Just… no. Not everyone is good at something. Some people are gifted at many things while others really do suck at everything. The universe, both theologically and physically, is not based in any standard of equality except that of the soul, if you believe such things. There is no scale of ultimate ability that measures each of our holistic selves as suberbly intelligent in some area. Where this quote is used to indict the education system’s unyielding mission to force kids into thoughtboxes, I have to agree in part. I can even agree based on Revelation and Divine Purpose:
“‘To everyone who conquers…I will give a white stone, and on the white stone is written a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it…’ – Rev 2:17
What can be more a man’s own than this new name which even in eternity remains a secret between God and him? And what shall we take this secrecy to mean? Surely, that each of the redeemed shall know and praise some one aspect of the Divine beauty better than any other creature can. Why else were individuals created?…If He had no use for all the differences, I do not see why He should have created more souls than one…Your soul has a curious shape because it is a hollow made to fit a particular swelling on the infinite contours of the Divine substance, or a key to unlock on of the doors in the house with many mansions…Your place in heaven will seem to be made for you and you alone, because you were made for it – made for it stitch by stitch as a glove is made for a hand.
– C. S. Lewis”
But where it is generally used is as a self-esteem booster for people who are unintelligent or lazy. The truth is, some people really are not intelligent or diligent, and would be better off accepting the fact of themselves so they can move on with their lives toward finding a niche that might suit them – mainly by working to improve in these areas. Knowing your strengths is great, but being able to admit your weaknesses is what is the key to growth. Some of us have many weaknesses, and need not be ashamed of it. “Blessed are they…”
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.
This one REALLY gets me, as a guy who not only is not interested in self-help type thinking, but thinks it is unhealthy. The quote goes on to some religious end which I may or may not support, but standing alone, this thought is cringeworthy. Is that really what you fear? Being really strong and badass and able to destroy all of your problems? Or is the thought of your problems the true fear? Let’s be honest here, if that was really what you were afraid of, you wouldn’t have any problems, would you? Oh, I am so powerful I can’t even stand it, and all of the world’s problems mean nothing to me! I doubt it, bub. I woud venture to bet that finding meaning in quotes like this means you can’t even get over your constant need for affirmation, much less any other problems that plague this world. Snap out of your insecure delusions that require you to indulge in this type of pat-on-the-back nonsense. It seeps of a desperation that means you should pick up Lost in the Cosmos (yes I can say that now!) and just relax knowing all of us are along for the same blind ride…
Ok. Rants over. Be smart. Be confident. And never let them see you bleed.