Saturday, May 21, 2011

The Complicity of Neutrality

I woke up this morning and as I wandered through my morning routine, I was thinking about the complicity of neutrality. In the incidents and events that surround us people often take the position of studied neutrality. I know I do it some times as well. I think there are a variety of reasons why we do this.

For some things we are truly neutral, we simple do not have an opinion on them. They are things that do not matter to us, or things that we are not involved in, or things that we have been involved in and considered and neutrality is just where we happened to land.

For other things, our neutrality is not honest. It is a carefully considered mask that we have assumed, again for a variety of reasons. Sometimes we put on that mask because we care too much about a subject, because we don't want the depths of our feelings and involvement revealed. Other times the mask is to protect ourselves, to conceal our tender and vulnerable thoughts and ideas. Yet other times the mask is to protect others, to protect their tender and vulnerable thoughts and ideas.

What we need to watch out for is those times when we take up this mask to hide ourselves from ourselves. It is then that we risk the complicity of neutrality. In our internal world, when we care about something, when we care deeply about something, what something simply matters to us - and we take up the mask of neutrality, then we become complicit in our failure to nurture that thing, whatever it may be. In our external worlds, was also risk that same complicity. When we believe in something, we should believe in that thing. What we feel about something or someone, we should express. What we think should be different, we should strive to change. What we see as injustice we should oppose. What we see as justice we should support. The complicity of neutrality leads us to nothing more than mediocrity.

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