The Id in Idealism and the Cyn in Cynicism

Sep 12th, 2008 | By | Category: Senior Moments Blog

Idealism is a quality to be cultivated and nurtured. It is the idealist who helps us see things as they might be. It is the nature of some to be optimistic, upbeat, and encouraging. Usually, such personalities attract attention, respect and affection. Is it because they are always giving off similar signals to others? Sorting out the id, a person’s inherited, unconscious psychological impulses, and the cyn (sin) in cynicism (believing the worst) one needs to work hard at coming to a state of openness.

While cynicism is often all the rage, particularly in an election cycle, it surely is not representative of the best within us. Idealism is! So, choosing behaviors, which seems to be the one most suited to your disposition? Sure, it’s easy to pile on and denigrate and downplay, and arouse suspicion and fear. Of course, there are those whose paranoia loves to be fed and in great quantity. Naturally, there will be some who, even if the sky is blue and the sun is bright, will insist a storm is surely on its way.

During the next several weeks we will be tested to determine what the shape and nature of our collective lives will look like. In choosing leaders, we are saying a lot about ourselves. In siding with one point of view, we are also choosing to reject the other. The choices are complex, often troubling, and influenced by innuendo and even misrepresentation. So how do we sort it all out? How do we get to the place that our idealism is confirmed by how we vote? How do we arrive at the moment when we are sure that our choice, for us, is one we can live with?

+Read, read, read! And then research what has been read. I have been found with egg on my face on several occasions when I have concluded the veracity of some information or another and sent it on as “truth.” I even checked it out on, only to find no reference to the particular issue….until the next day…..when my mistake was revealed.

+Converse with others. Their point of view may be helpful in developing your own. But….

+Avoid being a copycat or Believing everything you see, hear, read on the Internet or from Television or in Newspapers and Magazines. Remember, they have biases too.

+Filter your own views through the prism of rational decision making, careful thought, prudent insights, unemotional and objective processing.

+Don’t get too worked up! It will likely cost you embarrassment and loss of friendships.

+Be prepared to listen. But, if uncomfortable in a discussion, find an appropriate way to absent yourself from the discussion.

+Finally, pray. This year the expression of an informed electorate is extremely important and necessary. We are entering into an era unprecedented. We need to be reinforced with a systematic understanding of what the consequences could be.

And, above all else, be sure you are registered to vote and do so on or before November 4.

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