Friday, June 16, 2017

Clashing Clichés, Catch-Phrases, and Cover-Ups

by John Boodhansingh of Zero Mindfulness

Let’s look at some phrases that people commonly use for perceived benefit yet often clash with their behavior. These phrases may seem to prettify one’s self or one’s experience, but typically they serve only to crap-ify what is already soiled.

We’ll start with love and hate clichés as an example, and then touch on catch-phrases and cover-ups.

Not-So-Lovely Love Clichés

What Is Spoken
  1. “I’m a lover, not a fighter.”
  2. “I don’t hate. I love everyone.”
  3. “I hate the action, not the person.”
What Is (Usually) Meant
  1. “I’d like to kick someone’s ass.”
  2. “I hate a lot of things about a lot of people, but actually… [see #3]”
  3. “I hate the person because I cannot discern between who they truly are and who they appear to me to be.”

  4. …“But deeper than all this, I just hate all sorts of things about my own self. I cannot see who I truly am, and because this discomfort haunts me endlessly and I don’t want to face it, I sugarcoat the truth so it’s easier for me to swallow and so it doesn’t look so bad to others.”
What did Mary Poppins sing? “A spoon full of sugar makes the medicine go down…”

Let Me Explain…

What’s ironic about the behavior of many people who use the above types of love clichés is that the behavior completely belies word-to-action integrity.

It’s not difficult to see because we’re always giving ourselves away. Although there is some wiggle room in the middle for those who are into self-improvement, we’re generally either in integrity with regard to an issue and do what is best in those areas—that is, we’re showing our true colors—or we’re out of integrity and using various coping mechanisms to deal with the stress that non-integrity causes—we’re being fake.

If you don’t quite see what I’m saying, here are two things to work with:

One: Start by getting to know yourself. The keyword being: self-inquiry. If you’re too busy trying to uphold the ways of fashion, the ways of family, the ways of religion, government, science, and so forth, you need to detach. Your truth is in you, not “out there” somewhere—“out there” is for everyone else’s lies and truths. As you let go and realign with your own inherent nature, “seeing” will come to you. (This “seeing” not being some woo-woo concept—it’s simply you making space for what is currently hidden yet already available and far truer and deeper than what the intellect and mere visuals can provide.)

Two: In the interim, think of it like this: If you’re someone who’s not trained as one such as a psychiatrist or investigator, you’ve probably at least noticed on TV or maybe with your kids how when someone is guilty of something they’re not necessarily silent about it. Meaning, they hint about what they’ve done. Maybe the police officer says, “I better go check in the basement before I leave,” and the homeowner-now-killer says, “Ah, c’mon. It’s five o’clock somewhere. You’ve checked the whole house. What do you expect to find? There’s junk all over the place down there. I wouldn’t even want to go down there donning a hazmat suit and lightsaber.” And on and on he rambles.

The thing is, in having the issues yet being unwilling to face them, we can’t help but give ourselves away. Partly consciously, partly unconsciously, we know we have issues and we’re afraid others can see them. We therefore attempt to maintain a facade to protect ourselves both from seeing our inner truth fully and from being seen by others as imperfect.

Interestingly, however, most people can’t see nearly as much as we're trying to hide because they either aren’t trained and/or haven’t developed their intuitive senses. Regardless, because the fears exists within one self, that is enough to fuel a false image which, contrary to our intentions but exactly as happens, reveals to others the very things we don’t want them to know.

In this case: That we hate people and we’re fighters.

Which isn’t meant to imply that any suspect individual is necessarily carrying the hate needed to kill someone or throw a Molotov cocktail through the front window of their house. But the manifest forms of negativity to potentially arise out of this hate can be quite intense. I’ve seen it, I've been a perpetrator of it, and I've been a victim to it on many, many occasions. I can assure you that whatever had happened, no matter how pretty the justification, it was absolutely not aligned with love.

To clarify further, yes, I did write a post in the past titled: “Hate Does Not Exist.” I still agree with this. As far as I am concerned, hate is a motive-defining cover-all label that can be used to describe the appearance of a variety of underlying factors such as fear, resentment, etc.; in itself, hate is nothing. I use the term hate in this writing due to its contrasting nature to love.

Beyond Love and Hate

Although the examples and explanation above are focused on love and hate, there are many other cliché-ish phrases people use for which their behavior isn’t half as pretty as their words.

To see where you fit in, if you fit in, the most obvious way is to see if you use any other clichés about yourself and your experience and then observe whether or not your behavior aligns with them.

A second possibility is to see if you have any personal catch-phrases. For example, maybe you have difficulty maintaining a schedule, hard as you may try. You sort of sense there’s a deeper reason, but you avoid inquiry because the thought of facing it makes you uncomfortable. You therefore decide to start telling people things like: “I’ll be there. Don’t worry. I’m timely as Big Ben.”

What’s funny about such phrases is that people say them as if they can truly fool themselves and others, as if using such a phrase is going to resolve an issue they’ve been struggling with for the last 18 or 81 years. All the while, others may be rolling their eyes as in, Does he really not realize how ridiculous he sounds? Dude was probably late for his own birth.

It’s important that time is taken to look into any perceived need for these phrases. In the timing example, you could have childhood trauma. Maybe you unconsciously fear being shamed for arriving on time; that “authority” will criticize you for being “so perfect all the time.” When struggles come down to deeper issues such as this, we can put a lot of energy into trying to overcome them yet never actually do so. Many times, unpleasant as it may be, we do have to go deeper for resolution.

But the issues are then resolved, at which point we can live without silly phrases, without people thinking we’re crazy, without fear, without perpetual tardiness. Or however it may play out in any given instance.

A third and final consideration is what could be described as a flagrant cover-up. No, it’s not so flagrant to those who are upholding the same, but these things are pretty obvious to me, and I suspect they’re probably quite evident to many others.

A super-prevalent example of this is, “I’m doing well.” In the US, we have the sickest and fattest population in the world, the middle class is drastically shrinking, our unemployment rate is through the roof, we’ve got astronomical debt, and on and on.

“How are you, Ken?”

“I’m doing great. Yeah. Really. Can’t complain!”

The majority of the time (at least from my own observation and experience), this is utter crap. The happiness and such is totally manufactured. People are generally so unsatisfied. So many people are constantly complaining, judging others, eating abusively, hiding in their phones, and so on, and yet if asked how they’re doing they put on a smile and tell you, “I’m doing well these days,” or, “Can’t complain, you know? Just graduated, I’ve got a good job, [and blah, blah, blah].”

I can’t speak for anyone else, but at least for me, I so often hear people say these things and I get thinking like, Wait just one damn minute… The last 46 times I saw you you were complaining like mad. Now I just heard you bitching for 10 minutes about how lousy your job is, you look like you don’t sleep and eat right, [and blah, blah, blah.] What gives?”

Anyway, take it for what it’s worth. My experience and observation has shown me a great deal of fakery. Maybe that’s not your experience at all, maybe it is, or maybe it doesn’t seem to be yet but you’ll see it so when you clear out any of your own toxic needs for false clichés, catch-phrases, and cover-ups.

Parting Words

Regardless of what clashing phrases you may use and, really, even if you don’t use them at all, if you only remember only one thing from this post, let it be this:

The qualities of love are those such as compassion, empowerment, integrity, acceptance, forgiveness, joy, and peace.

Do these traits align with your internal experience of life?


Click here for Cutting the Crap: A Follow-Up To Clashing Clichés, Catch-Phrases, and Cover-Ups.

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