Cutting the Ties that Bind

After many months of consideration and internal debate, I have deleted most of my personal social media accounts. There are several reasons for this, the primary of which is that I find that they are not conducive to my overall spiritual and mental health.

I got my first account back in 1999, long before social media was the thing. First it was Six Degrees, followed by Myspace, and Facebook and Twitter, then Instagram and Snapchat. Now, there are dozens of social media services, networks and platforms, all with varying approaches to levels of interactions, freedom of speech and privacy, and I’ve had an account on most of them. However, the overarching theme is connecting people in ways that are meaningful to them, and in the best case, this can be a wonderful thing.

Unfortunately, social media also provides a means to simulate meaningful social interactions without making real connections. It gives those who wouldn’t have or maintain a real-life connection the feeling of being connected but without true friendship. It allows those who most need a social life to pretend that all is well while further isolating themselves.

Furthermore, social media enables those who play duplicitous games to prey upon others who are weak or otherwise disadvantaged. It feeds into the psychopathy of the sociopath and narcissist who use it to manipulate and gaslight their targets, giving them far more effective tools to turn unsuspecting mutual friends into their “flying monkeys” as these otherwise well meaning persons reach out in genuine concern, completely unaware that they are being played for the fool. It expands the bad actors’ means of access to play spiritual and social games in which they torment those whom they have selected for destruction for whatever reasons that their sick minds have conjured.

There are several people from my past who, in my saner moments, I know need to stay there. It’s long past time to move on with my life, remembering what good there was while consigning the rest to the dust bin of my personal history. However, just as it has been said of the Internet in general, social media never forgets, and even when we take the steps to limit and restrict certain memories from coming up in our feeds, various commitments can compel one to keep around people who really just need to be gone from their life.

Thus I’ve finally pulled the plug. I’m done. This wasn’t an easy decision: I’ve had my Facebook account since the platform was opened to the general public. There’s a lot that I will miss—for a while, at least—as I detox from the addiction. I’m not saying that I’ll never create another personal social media account again, but it won’t be anytime soon.

To those of you whom I have met only online and would like to remain in contact, this blog isn’t going anywhere and you’ll be able to find me here. If you know me in real life, feel free to reach out to me if you have any questions.

To social media in general, so long, and thanks for all the fish.

Leaving Parties and Factions Behind

A friend asked in a post on their social media page, how can a person be a Christian and not support BLM.

I left the Republican Party in part for the same reasons that I’ll never support the Democratic or Libertarian Parties (or the Constitutional, Green, Socialist, etc.)—they expect you to “fall in line” with the party platform and to support their candidates good, bad or indifferent, you know, for the “good of the party”. Of course when election day rolls around, I’ll vote for the candidates who I believe will do the least amount of damage to our civil body politic and constitutional form of government, quite often “holding my nose” as I do so, knowing full well how to horse trade. Continue reading Leaving Parties and Factions Behind

Prayers for the First Nations and all American Peoples

As I was praying and seeking God specifically for His will in the case of Leonard Peltier the other night, I felt strongly impressed to pray for his release, and the following prayers came to me.

Continue reading Prayers for the First Nations and all American Peoples

On Narcissism

The narcissist cares only for one thing: themself. To the narcissist, it’s all about how they can gain from us whatever it is that they’ve determined that we can provide while investing as little as possible in return. We’re not coequal persons cooperating with them in building a friendship based on mutual trust and respect; rather, a narcissist sees us only as objects to be used in achieving their goals, filling whatever needs—emotional, material or otherwise—they may want from us based on the roles in which they have cast us.

Continue reading On Narcissism

Do you believe in ghosts?

A friend posited the following question to her social media followers:

So quick poll:
Do you believe in ghosts or spirits?

I’ve had some really weird stuff happen to me that’s been witnessed by friends so I know something is out there but not sure what.

I’d love to hear your opinions!

Yes. Emphatically, unequivocally, undeniably yes.

Continue reading Do you believe in ghosts?

Feathers in the Wind:
Why I Hate Lashon Hara—Evil Speech

As Rosh Hashanah, a great time for introspection and self-examination, comes to a close, I’m reminded of an oft told story regarding gossip and slander that has been adapted in various folk tales and by several communities of faith. Rather than retell one of the many variants here, I offer you links to several versions that which taken as a whole, paint the picture that I wish to share.

Continue reading Feathers in the Wind:
Why I Hate Lashon Hara—Evil Speech

My Friend

I’m a cat guy. I’ve always been a cat guy. I’ve cared for dogs, turtles and fish, and I enjoyed loving all of them, but my heart is squarely inclined to the feline for my primary living companions. Unfortunately, my mother is allergic to all four-legged pets, and with my past jobs, I had to move fairly often. Landing back with family between most assignments has made keeping pets difficult at best, so most of “my” cats have been strays.

Continue reading My Friend

A Few Nagging Questions

A friend recently posted this to a social media account:

Sometimes I sit quietly and wonder why I’m not in a mental asylum.

Then I take a good look around me and realize… maybe I am.

Yes, they meant this as a joke, but when I first read this, I couldn’t shake it. The more that I thought about it, the more that it stirred me. As I continued to ponder it, the following question came to mind:

Continue reading A Few Nagging Questions

A Key to Understanding Math

I’ve tutored in math, science, history and English; of these, I love math the most. One of my nephews recently needed help in working a “word problem” on his math homework. As we discussed the problem, it became apparent to me that he has been doing most of his math mechanically without truly understanding the core concepts underlying the problems that he is working, let alone correctly associating the meaning of words in the context of applying the principles of math. Continue reading A Key to Understanding Math