The inspiration for today’s post began with a tweet from Oprah. She was responding to a man, who I now see from his twitter page is obviously trying to get attention by being really, really mean.
Here is the conversation: @Oprah- To me Whitney was THE VOICE. We got to hear a part of God every time she sang. Heart is heavy, spirit grateful for the GIFT of her. In which man who I won’t name says: I did not know God condoned illicit drug use. #Hypocrite. In which @Oprah responded: What I know for sure: God is love. Love does not condemn. I did not know God was in the drug law business.
There was also another conversation on Facebook after Madonna’s Super Bowl performance. A few people felt the need to condemn Madonna and make comments about who she is a person and so on. I felt a need to defend Madonna, maybe to defend the part of me that feels judged, knowing that we are not just what we show- that we are so much more, and at times, so much less. I also responded because I am so over seeing others (and myself) talk shit about people, especially, as a culture, celebrities.
The excuse, as I defended Madonna, is this is what happens to them because of the attention- they get admired and ridiculed, but this doesn’t make it right.
Oriah Mountain Dreamer, on her Facebook page, made an interesting comment about Whitney’s death- she called it “Death by Perfection.” As I thought about this further, the Whitney I loved in the 80’s and 90’s was sweet, beautiful and obviously THE VOICE, as Oprah said. Perfection was projected at her. She was the perfect diva, the perfect performer, having the perfect look, and voice. She had everything. Is it possible, there was a secret she was holding- a secret that said I am not all of those things. I am not as perfect as you think I am. In fact, I recall her telling us during an interview that she has another side, a side at the time, she seemed proud of. Is it possible, part of what she did was show us, and herself, how imperfect she is.
Addiciton or no addiction- just to say it was addiction that killed her doesn’t go deep enough. People say addiction is a disease, but I think it is a symptom of a much deeper disease. Whitney sang a song, Greatest Love of All– not having love for ourselves is our disease, and for most of us, it begins right out the womb, and perhaps before. We are a world of the walking wounded and rejected. Because of this, the culture can’t help but to tell us we aren’t okay- that who we inherently are is imperfect, or just as bad, we are told how perfect we are. We are neither. We just are and should be taken as such, and as such in each moment, but we aren’t. Instead we must define, concrete and project, and celebrities get this in enormous waves.
Life is difficult for us “common” folk, so imagine what it might be like for the famous, regardless if they conscioulsy sought fame out or not or how much damn money they have. Does it make us feel better to ridicule them becuase we have a part of us that would like to famous, and rich? Does it feel good to be in awe of them because we feel so inadequate? How do you think it makes them feel when we give them all our shit? How do we feel when we are projected upon?
I have a few points to this post, I see, probably running off on a couple tangents. It’s a hot button for me, and from this post, I want us to really consider that we are all energy. What this means is we feel everything that is being projected at us, near and far. If we were a culture seeped in a lifestyle right out of the womb to know, and love thyself- then there would not be projection. There might actually be more love.
Yes, I am of the 2% of the population, according to some test, labeled as “the idealist.” I see what is possible, and I often, almost always fall short myself, and it hurts me more and more to see us so critical and condemning toward others. My response to the twitter conversation from above: People condemn so to not feel that Love- but it’s there.
I condemned Whitney during the Oprah interview, which was the last time I saw her. Why? Because my mom was an addict, and I was the one who was more responsible than she was. It is a common role, children of addicts, play, and I saw Bobby Kristina being put in that position by her mother. This is my stuff. Truth may be in this for Whitney and her daughter, but at the time I was still angry by the responsibility I carried in lack of my mother’s, and projected that upon Whitney.
I don’t know Whitney at all. And maybe Whitney probably didn’t know Whitney as well as she would have liked. I mean does anyone really want to throw their life away, as what has been suggested? And is Whitney’s death or life a waste because of what we think we know about her? This was HER life. This is OUR life, and it is of no one to say to us what is a waste and what is not. What is wrong and what is not. What is right and what is not. We come here for our own reasons. Our own lessons. Our own possibilities.
Our possibility, to my idealist mind, is one of the greatest lessons, a lesson that cannot be learned just in school or by some famous person who we want to be our role model or that can even be done in one life, and that possibility is to know our self, all of our self. Not only know it all, but love it all, and from what I see, we have hardly touchded upon the friendship, compassion and deep, deep wisdom that is in the self.
To tweet a respoonse to that conversation was a step forward in my evolution toward that love. I didn’t condemn the man who said this or defend or project. Instead I saw that the love Oprah mentioned is there- in all of us, and we condemn others so we don’t have to feel our own pain. Our pain can’t kill us. We only fear it might, and we get involved in all sorts of destrucitve behaviors because of that fear.
None of us are squeky clean, and when we are, we will be out teaching in love and compassion and not condemnation, superiority and judgement. To have compassion is to understand our human condition. To express love is to know that is what we are. That love is what we all hold and often try and ignore, but it’s there.
I know this wasn’t an ooey-gooey Valentines post, but sometimes we must go beyond the oo and the goo. I will leave you with this video of Whitney singing the Greatest Love of All. What brought tears to my eyes, is seeing how happy this woman was when she sang. That is a look of pure love, that existed even in her so-called dysfunction. That, maybe even more than the voice, inspires, and learning to love ourselves is the greatest gift of all, and it’s a process.
Please spread the love and the message. I’d love it if you did. Happy Valentines Day.
The Soul Reporter