When I was kid, we always watched the evening news while we ate dinner. No wonder I seek comfort in food! [How quickly I digress.] I remember asking my Mother why we always had to watch the news, and she said "Because it's important to know what's going on in the world!".
Flash forward about 3 decades. I was having a conversation with Cherrie, and was completely perplexed by the fact that she didn't watch television news or read the newspaper. She said that the news was depressing, upsetting, and that it always left her with knots in her stomach. I agreed, but continued to argue my Mother's point, which I had adopted as my own. I mean how could a person live in this world, and not be aware of all of the important issues going on?! You might as well don blinders and forfeit your rights!
Well that was about 8 years ago, and EXTRA-EXTRA, have I got NEWS for you!
Read all about it.
In the years that have passed since that conversation, I have completely stopped watching the news, almost never pick up a newspaper, and have banished talk radio from my ears. Well, except for a little NPR.
Cherrie was right. Media's chief job these days is to keep us scared- NOT informed. If we remain frightened, we will stay closely tuned in. I won't get into the propaganda angle on that, but I would like you to ponder the idea that all of the sadness, turmoil, and pain that the world is suffering...is NOT your business! I know, I know, now I'm just talking crazy. But think about it....
We are inundated constantly by bad news. Beaten over the head by heinous stories of ill-will, corruption, and murder. Okay now. What can YOU do about any of that? Did I just hear you say "NOTHING"? My point exactly.
For example. Violent crimes are being committed accross the US everyday. You hear about them on the news, but what can YOU do about it? How does it benefit you to know that 9 people were gunned down at a KFC in Detroit last week, when you live in Reno? Same could be said about the BP oil spill or the earthquake in Haiti. Is it important that you know your fellow man is suffering in a foreign land? Well of course it is, but we need to prioritize how much emotion we attach to situations that do not directly involve us. Send a donation. If you can't do that then send a prayer. In fact be sure to send a prayer regardless. But unless you're planning to join the Red Cross, YOU need to focus your attention elsewhere.
I've recently decided to apply this philosophy to politics as well. I do try to keep abreast of issues that are close to me, and then vote my conscious. The reality beyond that is that I have little control. I am not burying my head in the sand, but rather keeping my spirit above water. I will agree that change only occurs in the world if WE change it. So be an activist if that is your heart's calling- but beware the spiritual toll it can take.
If you think of emotions as spiritual energy, then bad news and negative stories are like naughty children. The more you feed into their bad behavior, the worse that behavior tends to become.
So then what can WE do? Start digesting more positive news and stories! The universe is reflective, so doesn't it make sense that if we focus on all of the good things that are going on the world, we can MULTIPLY that good? I know personally, I could use a little more good news, couldn't you?