Wednesday, April 11, 2012
FANATIC OR FAN?
Baseball season is about to begin. Spring training for the Giants has already begun in Arizona. And when the weather is nice here, we fly this flag, showing all who drive by that we support our local (albeit Bay Area) team.
There are some who would take the word "fan" and go all the way with "fanatic". I'm sure that you have heard on the news of people beating people up because they were not rooting for the "right" team. Sad, I think, to take anything so seriously as to wound or injure someone else. And also sad that they are not willing to see the other person's point of view either. This is true of so many things in life: politics, religion, even friendships. Isn't there a better way to live life rather than burying your head in the sand and not being willing to discuss the differences? For lack of a different word "debate" comes to mind. Some people are not willing to debate the issues.
When I was attending college and getting my bachelor's degree, we had to debate issues in our class...one team against another. And I wasn't always given the view of something that I was passionate about when it came to the debate. Yet, for better or for worse, we were given the chance to make our point and take the view of either the protagonist or the antagonist. In the end, the class and the teacher got to vote as to which team made the best case for their scenario. It was actually kind of fun, especially if I was on the antagonist side. It gave me great insight into another point of view rather than being just nearsighted and not willing to see what someone else might be thinking.
College is a great place to learn things. But if you believe that you already have all the answers and are not willing to really put a magnifying glass on what you are being taught, you miss the point. I am glad that I attended college much later in life. By the time I got there I already had some life experience and so many of the things I learned already on my own only helped me to be a better learner. And, it wasn't all a blur because of the parties the night before.
The key to this whole piece I think are the two words "extreme" and "irrational". In Buddhism there is "the middle way". I believe in this philosophy and try to enforce it in all areas of my life. Granted, I still fail in some categories when it comes to certain things. But, moderation (or the middle way) seems to be what stands out for me most. Too much of anything is a bad thing, don't you think? We have to temper everything in our lives and allow other points of view to sift in. Slowly, they meet in the middle.
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