life, philosophy

The Battle

Welcome folks. It’s been a while since I posted something, and I’ve had some deep thoughts I want to share.So much has been happening in our society in 2020, and reports everywhere make it sound like the sky is falling. It’s difficult to decipher what is true and what is false. Is this more “chicken little” paranoia, or are we really getting toppled by the falling sky?

Why is it that some people feel they can control everything? From celebrities defying the aging process, to the weather, to a virus, to human behavior—at times it seems like certain folks think they can cheat death itself. Why do they believe they can bend everything to their will?

In my novel, Whit’s End, I show how the characters struggle with the human issue of control. I believe, control (due to fear) is at the core of all of society’s upheaval, and it’s why I write about it.

There was a time that I wanted to control everyone and everything around me. One example of my control issues was trying to get the people in my life to behave in the way I thought was best for our relationships. Can you imagine how much friction and turmoil that created in my life? Wanting to force people to behave the way I thought they should? I had to face that my problems in life stemmed from trying to control things that were out of my control.

Another example was my battle with infertility. The keyword there is “battle,” because when we’re trying to control an outcome that won’t go our way, it’s a battle. I was befuddled, angry and depressed that my body was not going with the flow of nature. I was determined to experience childbirth and motherhood. I tried to force it by pumping inordinate amounts of hormones into my body that eventually landed me in excruciating pain and temporarily bedridden. My misery didn’t dissipate until I stopped trying to control the outcome.

Let go and let God has become a cliché that is no longer profound enough a saying to take seriously. This is also true of the Serenity Prayer. You know the one, God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change . . .

Not only are those sayings now trite, but for many, there is no god. If they let go, what is there to trust in? They either need to take control over everything themselves, or place control of everything in the hands of a human authority they hope they can trust to do their will. Nature goes with the flow. Streams don’t try to flow upward. Chipmunks don’t try to be birds. Despite how many people think their dogs act like a human, dogs know their dogs. That idea is the human’s projection of their emotions onto the dog.

Love Birds – Cardinals mate for life

Here’s another example, after I said goodbye to my first dog, I joined a grief group. The people there were wonderfully supportive, and I couldn’t have gotten through it without them. As I progressed in my grief, I noticed a running theme with many of them. They seemed to think there was something they could’ve or should’ve done to prevent their pets’ deaths. I understand that guilt comes with grief, I felt it too, but as I grew out of that phase of the process, I noticed many got stuck there and couldn’t move. Quite a few of them believed they should’ve been able to control their pet’s life or death.

How does anyone step out of misery and fear, when they’re trying to control things that cannot be controlled?

Animals, plants, weather, all go with with the flow of what nature brings to them, and somehow their needs are taken care of while they’re alive. But like everything else in our material world, they appear to accept they don’t live forever.

Sometimes I slip back into wanting to control. These days I usually recognize it as soon as I see a battle beginning. That’s when I let go and go with the flow.

The more we try to control the outcome of every single incident that happens in our society, the tougher the battles become. That is what we’re seeing now . . . the battle for control. Strife, upheaval, and chaos will not cease until we examine this control issue and learn to live and let live.

“Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies . . . those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. They may be more likely to go to heaven, yet at the same time likelier to make a hell of earth. This very kindness stings with intolerable insult. To be “cured” against one’s will.” ~ CS Lewis


16 thoughts on “The Battle”

    1. Hi Andrea. Yeah, I try to remind myself there is nothing I can do about the push-and-pull for control of society as well.

      I’m glad you’re able to decipher what is and what isn’t in your control. I’m better at it than I used to be. Once I see a battle beginning, I realize and let go.

      Thank you for sharing and for the nice welcome back. 😊💗

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Oh man, Lori, I think we’ve all had moments, days or years struggling with this control-thing. In my exploration it seems like the ego of us humans exists as it tries to push away things it doesn’t like or try to get more of what it likes. Yet life is going on as it goes on while the ego tries, tries, tries and tries again to get its way in order to feel safe, happy, content.

    The main thing I am learning to do is notice when this control-ego-loop is happening and gently (hopefully) relaxing back into the inner space that feels like it is already fulfilled and enough. In moments in that place the desire to control seems to drop away. But then it’s the next moment to see through and return to peace. Over and over and over again. Thanks for this thoughtful post.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Kathy. I used my control issues from the past as an example of how trying to control people and outcomes is what’s causing the strife in our society as a whole. It’s not only in our personal lives, but the control is spreading outward to all of us.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. My own ego keeps thinking I could do or say something to people that would bring unity and peace, at least among all those I know in person and in my social media circle. I like your thoughts on noticing when the loop is happening. Thanks again. 🌷

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Lori, thought-provoking post.
    Oh yes, the human pursuit of control. I think most people have (or have had) an issue with this, to a greater or lesser degree. Seems totally built in, and part of our growing up as humans is to learn how to control ourselves, not others.
    Good to see you back. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Lynette. I like that, “to grow as humans is to learn how to control ourselves, not others.”

      Thanks for the welcome. I’ve been taking lots of photos, as you can tell from this post.

      I appreciate your input. 👍

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You’ve got me thinking about how much I like to be in control, and If it affects my life directly, I think it’s a good thing to try to control things. The thing I need to remember is that there are things that are out of my control completely and those are the things I need to learn to work around. It’s an important distinction that can make a big difference in the amount of stress we put on ourselves.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Anneli. Whether someone believes in God or not, the serenity prayer is perfect to help us try to focus on what we can and cannot control. “Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, to change the things I can, and the wisdom TO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE.”

      Certain people and/or groups are hell bent on getting humans to behave the way *they* think is appropriate. Things haven’t even begun to go bad if this continues for a long period of time. It’s not in human nature to be controlled by other humans.

      It’s nice to “chat” with you again. I’ve been thinking of you while I was away.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. The Serenity Prayer makes a lot of sense to me. I’ve kept it in mind for many years. I can’t believe what’s happening in the States. I didn’t know there were so many ugly people in the world. And there’s no way they can blame Trump for their behaviour. They have to take responsibility for that all on their own. As for the instigators, well, that’s even worse – to stoop that low to make a political point.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. It’s all very complicated and goes deep, Anneli. I have lots and lots and lots of info that no one even knows because they don’t research.

          Hey, btw, what do you think of the nature photos I’ve been taking since I’ve been gone? I can’t believe I captured those two cardinals kissing!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Beautiful. They look like a male and female but the female could be an immature bird that the adult has just fed. Did it flutter its wings like baby birds do when they’re getting fed. Sweet pic, anyway. Nice to see you getting out with the camera. Today it’s a very busy day for birds around here. I think they know the weather is about to change and they are beginning their fall staging behaviours.

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            1. The cardinals are definitely male and female. Without Max here, I’ve been focusing on other animals. I’ve been watching the birds a lot, and these two have been hanging around together. Female cardinals don’t get as red as males. They’re usually a brownish-red. The sunset photo I took through the back windshield while turned around from the front seat with the car moving forward on the highway. It’s blurry and filmy, but it was such a cool sunset. I hoping to post more pics next week if I have the time.

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