So, when this loose behaviour I throw off
And pay the debt I never promised,
By how much better than my word I am,
By so much shall I falsify men's hopes,
And like a bright metal on a sullen ground,
My reformation, glitt'ring o'er my fault,
Shall show more goodly and attract more eyes
Than that which hath no foil to set it off.
I'll so offend, to make offence a skill,
Redeeming time when men think least I will.
Bill S. (1623)
I would no doubt take flak, quoting from anything that promotes offending others as a skill, as a virtue, especially in a day and age where watchers of the New Age dvd , The Secret, propose we need to be rid of all negativity or else we will fail to achieve any of our goals. It is in this passage, though I find a lot of thrill, a lot of encouragement. One should never be bound by the harsh pronouncements of others. The most horrible people I have had the ill fortune to meet are gratefully gone from my life.
I like this passage, because I have no benefits to gain by pretending I am without fault. I am not here to pretend I am shining, especially after my months of uninspired, or spitefully inspired writing. I laugh, because my blog is getting random hits from search engines, and in a sense, many are coming here to my mixed thinking, my egocentric ramblings....and many come back.
My hope, reading from brother Bill above, is that I, too, will have a reformation. My hope is I am, always working towards becoming a better me. I remember when I was in San Jose, and I was a part of the efforts of Sacred Heart Community Service. I got to volunteer for an organization that simply, quietly, thanked me for the work I did, and always was able to give me something useful to do whenever I was feeling idle.
Of course, reading from Henry above, I am forced to ask, is this man striving for a true turn around, or is he planning a spin doctor effort to capitalize off some effort when his press coverage would be good. With friends talking to me, lovingly, about my last discussion on integrity, many have marvelous anecdotes of my failures, my disjointed behaviors, my own moments where my oneness would be in question.
I told you, and will continue to mention throughout time. I am quite content to accept my humanness. I am thrilled to think that if people think well of me, it will be because (this may rub some people the wrong way) I am taking right actions. I say this may bother some, because there is a fixation we have on the righteousness of people's motives. I am certain that though my motives may seem significant to many of you, it is my actions that will have impact on your lives.
Twice I have received discussions from readers where there was a statement, almost written word for word the same, and that was this declaration that everyone lives with their own truths. I do not know what the value of such a statement is, especially if we get rid of this bizarre fixation with people's motives, or better still, the characterization of a person over the nature of his motives.
In such a case, the man's motives are not even up for examination. All we get is his analysis of how good, bad, virtuous, or scandalous he deems his motives to be. That is why I said so long ago that we need to dispense with the discussion of motives altogether.
Knowing that from a logical standpoint, I am able to be judged just on the character of my actions. I am quite content with the most basic guideline in American law books , which assert still that a person can be convicted of committing any unlawful act, provided that that person has the capacity to know right from wrong. By the same standard, if I am capable of understanding right from wrong in social situations, work situations, or political situations, then I should be bound to the social standards of the place and time.
Life seems to become less complicated when no one has to listen to me moan, yeah, I fucked up, but my intentions were so good.... If you wanted to throw up, I understand. The issue of bullshit versus integrity becomes a non issue when we are able to evaluate an wrong action based on the qualities of the action itself, and the capacity of the actor to know better.
I have taken some shots at some people as I have been writing. I know I was not always righteous in what I wrote. I know, because I have people who wrote in to tell me so. My failures will remain online for examination. So, about all these people, concerned about everyone having their own truth, I have one thing to say: If your truth causes you to take action against me, and I am not feeling like a good christian, I will take action against you. No one's personal truths need to be examined or evaluated under that. Simplicity, truly, is the key.