I Know, I Know, this is supposed to be a blog about religion

One of the many things about which I am passionate is education. Here in the USA we need some serious reform. Most of what I have been yelling for years is summed up by this very smart man. It’s worth twenty minutes. Really.

Ken Robinson: How to escape educations death valley

And because this already raised a few flags on FB, I wrote this little bit of personal background info and opinions in response to concern over the speaker being dismissive of ADHD. I don’t think that he is. At all. But fyi, I am an unmedicated “sufferer” of ADD. I don’t look at myself as suffering. I was taught behavioral management at a young age, my mother encouraged me to be a child, and basically parented me. (Shocking, I know). ¬†I am also on the autism spectrum, am a relatively high functioning sociopath who possibly rates as a psychopath, and I DEFINITELY suffer from narcissism. ūüôā

I enjoy the speed and variety of my thoughts. I haven’t mastered them, but I’m definitely a brown belt. I can harness all that chaos and build amazingly in depth worlds. I don’t think that I’m “broken” because I sometimes get bored in the middle of listening to someone drone on about things that are meaningless to me. I just smile and say “Sorry, I missed that,” and have them repeat it. I don’t go anywhere without pockets if I can help it, because when I’m fidgety and want to touch things, I still keep my hands in my pockets and fidget with a worry stone like my Mum taught me when I was little. I don’t apologize to people for being able to think faster and about more things than they can per minutes. I am actually offended that children are being made to feel like they need to.

There are, however, many people who were not so lucky as I was in the parental department or in the willpower department, or whatever combination of nature and nurture that has so far allowed me to excel in academics, critical thinking, and kept me from hurting people (I kill them in fiction, thank you very much, because killing is bad. duh). That said:

I am incredibly passionate about ADHD, misdiagnosis, and over-medication. As a child who would have been medicated instead of taught management given the current (and past since it was twenty years ago) trends of medical and sadly many educational¬†professionals, I cannot stand to see a child turned into a zombie for the peace of mind of others. I know far too many children who were medicated to save their parents the hassle of having to actually interact with them.This is not only problematic from a billion different perspectives (not limited to bad parents, intolerance, stifling creativity, thousands of children who become adults who can’t function or manage their own humanness, etc, etc, etc) but also because it is normalizes and homogenizes the experiences of thousands of children who actually suffer from some pretty heartbreaking conditions. People become less sensitive to severe or confusing disorders like autism, Aspergers, and Tourrete’s, and expect individuals who suffer from these disorders to simply “take a pill for it” and be magically “normal.” The fact that there is a “normal” that these individuals are held to is as ridiculous as anything else. For every child who suffers from “childhood” and being medicated because of it, we lose that much more perspective on serious conditions, and in our lovely country (though I’m sure we’ve not the monopoly on it) when we lose perspective we lose any chance of compassion and problem solving.

The Good Outnumber the Bad

The Darkling is always telling me this. I rage against humanity so often, and even more often than that I decide that their persistent mediocrity is reason enough not to save them. I get frustrated by the cowards and by the “good” people who sit by in the face of horror and injustice. These aren’t “good” people. I’m sorry, but that’s just the way I see it. They may not be “as evil” as the evil people, but at best they are neutral. I don’t have a whole lot of use for neutral in a life that I will always believe is a constant battle between the best of us and the worst of us. It frustrates me when the best of us have to fight, not only the worst, but the vast masses of mediocre.

Because as Patton Oswalt says to the darkness “The Good Outnumber You And We Always Will”*¬†¬†but it’s not the darkness that weighs so heavily upon us. It’s not the evil.

It’s the people who don’t care. The people who choose a life of certain grey instead of standing up for what’s right. They are EXHAUSTING. Now don’t get me wrong, the crusaders can be tiresome too, especially when humanity does its usual and contorts the important points or misses them altogether. But right now, that’s not what I’m going to rant about. I’m not even going to go all Constantine’s Gabriel on you, though I’m hella tempted.

Instead, I’m going to agree with the Darkling and Mr. Oswalt, I’m going to remind myself, and you, that there is more light than darkness on this planet.¬†Even if you lump the neutrals in with the evils like I do and draw a Capraesque map in shades of darkness, the light shines brighter in intensity if not occurrence.

*small warning, there is a single f-bomb dropped at the beginning of Mr. Oswalt’s post.

Fragments of Hope: Letter from a Christian

A friend asked me once why I still love the Bible. She grew up in the Hellmouth right along with me and left as quickly as she could and I imagine that if she never goes back it’ll be too soon for her taste. She is now a self-identifying intellectual atheist and I think that my persistent faith confuses her as much as her persistent denial confuses me.

For me, I never stopped loving the Bible, or my perception of God. I love it like I love the works of select Transcendentalists, CS Lewis, and many of the Buddhist scriptures. I will always find comfort and power in the book. I don’t mind the seeming contradictions. I don’t need to find it without flaw. I like picking it apart for language, history, context, and subtext. I take exception with man, not the objects that man uses to such disappointing faults.

I rant at Christians not because I think that Christianity has run its course and proven itself obsolete, I rant because of its relevance and its potential, and because its message has been horribly distorted. Still, some things give me hope, and when I find them I will share them. The link below is one such.

What If Jesus Meant All That Stuff?