For a millennium, scholars and theologians or the wise old woman down the street (you know grandma) have told us change comes from within. Is that really true?
What is change?
Change (definition): The process of becoming different.
Different? Different in a sense of identity, belief systems, physical embodiment and methodology. That is the challenge today for everyone. Corporate CEO, Hip Hop artist alike. We all need to change. Our diet, our attitudes and how we get things done. Welcome to the dawn of the age of Aquarius.
Artist: The 5th Dimension
Genre: Psychedelic Soul
Change is a positively and negatively charged event simultaneously. It is never neutrally charged. Change is a commitment. Change is never ending. If you change once you can change a thousand times. Change can be for the better or for the worse. Some of the most infamous criminal minds of all time changed for the worse. Whether its Hitler of Lex Luther change is a choice, usually based on a set of extenuating circumstances that have happened to an individual. It all depends on how they decide to react to things outside of their control.
Good people that become great react to external stimuli with a vengeance against evil and bad energy. The change for the better of themselves but mostly they do it for the betterment of others and a higher order bigger than them. The bad guys usually change to get more for themselves. They make it all about them. That is how you can tell who is bad and who is good. If they talk about the importance of others they are good. If they consistently talk about how they can get their’s (ghetto slang for being selfish).
Bad politicians talk about what they can do for their party not the people. Talking about change can get you elected but one person can not institute change. Change is a movement with many fighting for the same cause. Talking about change is a battle cry not a war.
So it seems to be that change is an external phenomenon not an internal reorganization of matter. You don’t turn good or bad you respond to your surroundings. This response may be based on your perception of what you can acquire in your environment. Social standing plays a big part. Realistically the idea that any of us can have what we want in an untruth. The only way change occurs is when society as a whole says people are free to move as they wish and believe what they will.
If you were born a slave in the 19th century the probability that you would reach your dreams was remote. Yes Frederick Douglass was a self taught escaped slave who helped to negotiate the release of African-Americans but he was the exception not the rule. Most African-Americans at that time did not have the means or the will to create that kind of change. Douglass also used deception of his slave owners as a vehicle for his freedom.
Fast forward 150 years and you have illegal immigrants in America. How can they create change if they are not counted as Americans. They live in the USA and work at the bottom of the food chain but moving up is problematic without a social security number. Amnesty for sons and daughters of these people effects change because they can contribute and vote. Those that join the military get citizenship and can effect change by risking their lives to protect American interest.
Sometimes you can get to change by deception of the stays quo or selling yourself to the system in control
A poor kid is exposed to gang life. The guys in the gang make money and don’t worry about education. The kid sees his uneducated family struggle and he attends an inferior school. As a result changing into a gang member has an appeal. With no substantial parental guidance in place this scenario is a forgone conclusion.
Same kid same situation but a loving family and a solid educational system the probability of him changing into a gang member decreases.
If not a gang then their is the choice of selling to the system. Sports specifically basketball and football are a reasonable choice for a life change when there are few options. If you are poor six foot six and can jump and run fast sports is a great alternative choice to gangs and inferior schools. LeBron James is the most talented basketball player on Earth and he does not know his father and his mother was 15 years when she had him.
Great talent + no parents = NBA
A rich kid with great education through boarding school. Very little contact with quality parents can create disaster when you are rich too. Lack of exposure to all types of people can lead to poor decision making when operating from a position of power. The rich kid grows up, becomes a CEO of a manufacturing plant that dumps waste into a river. Killing and changing the environment is no concern of his. His winter home in Malibu burning in a fire has greater value.
There is also the Wall Street rich guy who hustles little old ladies out of their life savings. His impact is actually a greater negative draw on society than the gang member. The evil rich CEO can change the lives of thousands and millions for the negative. The gang member is no better but statistically his effect is less impactful. His is one of emotion and terror. The myth is; the evil underclass is uncontrollable. The horrors of the past are haunting us in the modern world. Through the creative use of media the gang member is feared and in many cases the CEO is cleared. Why?
Status. Perception is nine tenths of the law.
With the external environment, good and bad locations and areas determine society’s perception. Benefit of the doubt rests with what is your zip code. Are you from a good neighborhood or bad? Did you go to a good school? Who are you parents?
What does all of this mean?
Change comes from without and who you are is not determined by where you come from but how you treat others. What you give back makes you famous. What you withhold for yourself makes you infamous.
What you see in your everyday lives and how you interact to it determines change for you and the external stimuli you are effecting.
The classic example is a homeless person begs you for money. How you react determines change or no change at all. Sometimes giving a homeless person money can effect change sometimes it keeps things in a perpetual dysfunctional state. Before you give away your money you must ask yourself is this person hustling me or is this person being honest. The first thing you must do to effect change is get off of your high and mighty perch and be among the people. Everyone must be equal to institute positive change. Negative change is created through hierarchy. If you give money away because you feel sorry for a homeless person and you still think you are better because you are on your way to your expensive car, chances are you have just been hustled. If you look at the situation and a matter of unfair circumstances. If you see it as you could easily be that homeless person then chances are you just may effect change for the better. That person who receives your give just may perceive you as caring about them and that can inspire them to uplift themselves.
You don’t make people change buy showing them. You don’t make change by telling them you make change by loving them and treating them as equals (inspire of your Americanized social programing of, “People who are different are less.”)
People who have less just may have more than you.
They exist at the threshold of change everyday. Everyday their lives operate as this is the day to make a change. This is the day to take control. Some do some don’t for a varied number of reasons (mental health, socio-economic standing, self-esteem act.).
Most people that give money to the homeless are rarely thinking that this could be the day that I make a change in my life. The homeless are faced with this everyday. The so-called successful person is blind to it because they have constructed a life that they perceive as stable and what they are suppose to do or what is expected. Conversely the homeless may just be a manifestation of people who have had difficulty fitting into society. They don’t do what is expected and as a result are cast off into the social abyss (homeless). These individuals can not always fathom what is going on they are just trying to live through it. In many cases that is what happens when you don’t fit in. You loose your sense of home.
So is home actually having a home or is home where your heart is?
In other cultures it is in the heart. Developing countries are developing countries because they have be left behind. Many formally colonized cultures were occupied for hundreds of years and their occupiers never built an infrastructure. Why? Because building that infrastructure did not benefit them. It only seemingly exacted change for the oppressed. This is no different in America. The Ghetto is the ghetto and rural areas are the way they are because the status quo believe there is no reason to change these environments. They can just selectively take the chosen and talented ones and leave the rest to fend for themselves. With these areas contained by laws, society moves on and misses the opportunity for change which leads to evolution. Change has to be viewed as beneficial to all in order for it to occur.
External pressure + Change = Evolution
These external pressures force people to react. Some react with compliance. Others react and become motivated rebels for a greater good. Even others take to a life of taking from others and finally some just become dust in the wind.
Those that are motivated + Those in need = Change
So change has no price tag. You can be the little lady down the street that feeds the homeless or the big time rich guy with the foundation and effect change. You do it by doing, not by thinking (Republicans) or talking (Democrats) about it. Project housing or a tin shanty hut, everyday is the day to change. Give, it hurts you change.
Living in the world thinking you are the best means nothing, you must execute and demonstrate it. Sustainability in success only happens when your vision reaches beyond your own realm.
Change is out there but you have to go get it. It will not show up on your door step as a check with your name on it. Stand up get out there and make change. You will feel good about it and you will change.