Jealousy – Love and Hate #10

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A Definition:

Jealousy is a word that is used with ease. But often times it’s misused. The person says the word ‘jealous’ but what they actually mean is ‘envy’. Here is how I see the difference.  Jealousy is when you don’t want someone else to have what you have (or had). Envy is when you want what someone else has.

For example, if your neighbor has a new car and you wish you had it. You are envious, not jealous.  But if your neighbor steals your husband and you wish you still had him. You are jealous, not envious.

Love and Hate

The reason you are jealous in that situation is because you still love your husband (in spite of him being so stupid as to leave you). You hate him for leaving, you hate her for stealing him away but you still love him and want him back.  That is why you are jealous, because you feel both things at the same time. If you simply hated them both you wouldn’t be jealous. You would be happy to get rid of the jerk.  If you only felt love for him you wouldn’t be jealous, you might feel sorry for him, or maybe hopeful he has a good life, but wouldn’t want him back and you wouldn’t hate that your neighbor stole him.

What do you think? Am I making sense?


Drawing and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by Drake, 1986 – not dead yet, American singer


 

Who Are You? – Love and Hate #9

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Why the 60s happened:

After WWII the GIs came home and started families.  The US exploded in production and manufacturing, construction, innovation, and standard of living.  The depression was over, the war was over.  Deprivation was behind them. Now they could have nice things, go nice places on nice roads. All of which was great. But that lead to a desire to not stand out, unless it was to stand out as the best and the brightest. But certainly not to stand out as odd or eccentric.

But the truth was many of those people were faking it.  They didn’t really live these great lives full of fashion and money and grace and charm. They looked like they did, but not inside. Their outsides said one thing and their insides said another. Maybe the outside said dutiful housewife, but the inside said thwarted creative. Maybe the outside said successful businessman but the inside said thwarted outdoorsman.  The point isn’t about the specifics though, it’s about leading an disingenuous life.  It’s about not having who you present yourself to be matching who you really are.

Thank a Hippie

And so the people who saw this first hand, saw the hypocrisy and the pain it caused, who saw the thwarted lives, who saw the waste of trying to fit in, rebelled against it.  Those people were the children of those adults trying to fit in.  they became the beatniks, the hippies, the yippies (look it up) the flower children, the radicals. They became the ones promoting love, peace, creativity, freedom. They were the ones that said you could be who you want to be, not who you think others want you to be.

Even though we are 40-50 years removed from that era, if you feel that you are genuinely who you want to be, you have a hippie to thank for it.  Maybe not directly, but in our modern world, it started with them. And if you don’t feel you are who you want to be, if you feel you are putting on a facade that isn’t really you, then take a lesson from the hippies and take a small step out into the unknown and see if you can’t do it too.  You can you know.


Drawing and commentary © Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by André Gide, 1869-1951, French author


 

The Culture Cure – Love and Hate #8

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What do I mean by Culture?

I mean a society’s pursuit, desire, and support for a high level of creative expression in all arenas of society. What I don’t mean is an exclusionary or elite culture that feels itself to be superior or better than another one.

Why do I believe this high level of culture means less anger and violence? Because a high culture is one a society is proud of and invested in.  That means they don’t want it destroyed. They don’t want it diminished. They don’t want it to disappear. They have created something that brings joy, interest, wonder, humor, fun, discovery. Something that makes one think and allows for a thinking response. They learn and grow from it. In other words, they love it.

I do not believe we, as an overall society, have a culture like that at this time.

Why not?

Well, it’s like the very true variation on the old quote. “Grass is always greener…where you water it.”  The truth is we ourselves are responsible for the cultural grass being dry and dead.  How so?

  • We contribute to it by not buying real art from real artists.
  • We contribute to it when we are more interested in judging creative expression than we are in understanding it.
  • We contribute to it by not speaking up when ugly buildings are built and when streets are filled with chain store after chain restaurant.
  • We contribute to it by not caring or being involved in city and town planning.
  • We contribute to it when we agree to the cutting of arts budgets from public schools.
  • We contribute to it by watching violence and mayhem as entertainment again and again and again.
  • We contribute to it by decrying any use of public funds for creative endeavors.
  • We contribute to it by not reading.
  • We contribute to it by not being interested in other cultures.

In other words, to use a variation on another famous quote, “For culture to disappear, all it takes is for good people to do nothing.”


Drawing and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by Johanne Wolfgang Von Goethe, 1749 – 1832, German writer

Portrait Of Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe In The Country Painting by Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Tischbein; Portrait Of Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe In The Country Art Print for sale

Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe In The Country –  by Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Tischbein


 

The Lesser Ways of Hate – Love and Hate #7

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Heartbreaking – 

Some of the saddest reports I read in the newspaper each day (yep, I read the paper) are the ones about a mother and father being arrested for child neglect. They break my heart just as much as some much more violent reports.  Why is that?

Big Hate – 

We often see hate on display these days in terrorist attacks, violent protests, angry authority figures, politics and murder. You may even have hate spewed at you personally once in a while. Hate is not that hard to spot, is it.

Small Hate – 

But hate isn’t just the loud mouth, the siren, the volcano. It’s also the indifference of one group for another in pain. It’s the neglect a society shows towards the weakest or most vulnerable. It’s the irresponsible parent who would rather fulfill their own addictions and desires than take care of their child’s needs.

Tragic – 

But what is it they hate exactly?  Do they hate the child?  I think they hate not being able to indulge. They can’t be who they want to be with a child alongside them. And that leads to resentment and hatred for their child. Can you think of anything more emotionally tragic than that for a child? I can’t.  That parent may say they don’t want to hurt their child and so they don’t actively show hate towards them. But their ignoring of their needs, their purposeful lack of attention to their wants, is hate nonetheless.

Every Day – 

Love isn’t about extravagant birthday celebrations and big vacations. It’s not about giving the best of everything to your child. It’s about paying attention to them. It’s about turning away from what you want and need and paying attention to what they want and need.


Drawing and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by J.K. Rowling, 1965 – not dead yet, British author


 

Becoming What You Practice – Love and Hate # 5 & 6

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I drew this drawing of the crowd with two police officers representing love and hate on the morning of the Dallas protest, before the police officers were killed and wounded. I was going to post it the next morning but felt it would be insensitive to do so. It was now an incomplete statement.


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So over the next few days I drew this one as a companion piece.  It shows the opposite scene. Not cops in charge, but the crowd.  The crowd has the power of love and hate just as much as the cops do.  


Every Day

We as people must always decide, every day, whether we are going to act and react with love or hate.  When violence happens to someone, especially someone you don’t know and might be scared of, or antagonistic towards, are you looking for a reason to not care? That means your heart is moving towards hate. It is hardening. You are telling it that those people don’t care. That they deserved it.  

Only one person in the past week has deserved anything close to the fate of death, and that was the killer of the 5 police officers. But even then, you don’t have to say or feel it with hate. You can say it sadness that his life went so terribly awry, you can feel it with love and compassion for the families left behind. 

Part of the Problem

The other 16 people? They didn’t deserve to be wounded or die. If your political position is such that you are hating one of these people; the cops who shot Alton Sterling and Philandro Castile, or Alton and Philandro themselves, then you are slowly but surely marching into the ‘part of the problem’ column.  If you feel the shooting of the 14 people in Dallas was in any way justified, you are already deep into that column and need a wake up call. 

Age 80

Imagine yourself at age 80.  Who are you?  Your decisions now, every day, are making you into that person. Do you want that person to be hateful, bitter, angry, resentful? If you do, then practice those things and you will become them.  If you don’t, if you want, at age 80, to be kind, loving, forgiving, understanding, compassionate then you must practice those things now and every day. It’s how life works: You become what you practice. 


Drawings and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by Mignon McLaughlin, 1913 – 1983, American journalist


 

The Shape of Hate – Love and Hate #4

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Hate vs Anger –

I think people often get the two mixed up.  Anger, in my mind, is a temporary thing. That doesn’t mean you can’t find angry people who have made a habit of it. But usually anger is in response to an event, a word, the unexpected.  A traffic jam can get you angry.  But if you hate a traffic jam chances are there is something much deeper going on. Like hating your life, your job, your circumstances that brought you, time and again, to be in a traffic jam.   

Boomerang in your Car –

Actually being in your car is a good illustration of what hate is all about.  So, you are sitting in your car; hating your job, your life, your circumstances and this stupid traffic jam you are stuck in. As your hatred rises what actually changes around you? Does your job get better? Does home life suddenly improve?  Does the traffic jam go away? Nope. Absolutely nothing changes outside that car. Every ounce of hate bounces off the glass and metal and comes back to you.  

Boomerang in life –

Now, take that outside the car. No longer is it all coming back to you. That boomerang is first hitting your spouse, your boss, your co-worker, your kids…THEN it is coming back and hitting you. So, you are not just hurting yourself, but all those around you. And it can help create a self-ratification that your life is worth hating because now maybe your spouse, boss, co-worker and kids are angry too.  

Put the Boomerang Down – 

Really, what is the alternative? If you want to live a loving life instead of one filled with hate, you have to put the weapon down. You have to decide that hate is not a good weapon, that it will not win your battles. It will only inflict damage around you and within you.  

What weapon will win your battles? Before deciding on your weapon, maybe look to see if you are really in a battle in the first place. Maybe you have made it all up. Wouldn’t that be nice?


Drawing and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote is mine, adapted from one by Charley Reese, 1937-2013, American columnist


 

 

How Does Hatred Cease? – Love and Hate #3

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Simplicity Itself:

So simple to understand, and so easy to see when it is violated….by others.  Not so easy to call ourselves on it though, when we hate, when we desire harm to another out of hate, when we are blind to the log in our own eye.  When we dehumanize someone into a caricature instead of a real person and thus feel the right to hate them. When we decide that a whole group of people, maybe black, maybe Muslim, maybe white, maybe women, maybe Christian, maybe whoever doesn’t belong to our club, is to be feared and hated and judged instead of known and understood as a group and known and understood as individuals.

Then we have given in and are part of the problem, not the solution.

What is the answer?

My answer is to be aware and when the moment arrives when I could judge and hate, to choose to love and understand instead. It does sound a bit pie in the sky, but in truth it’s very practical. Actually pay attention and when you see that moment arrive, and it will (AND you will know it) you choose to have courage and think and speak in love instead of hate.  It will take courage because it might be a group of you together when someone says something hateful. And you will have to stand up to that person and let it be known you are choosing love instead.  It isn’t easy.

Why Do It?

So why do it, why not just let it slide? Because you become what you practice.  Just as sure as the sun and the rain, if you practice hate, if you practice accepting hate, then you will be more and more filled with it. This is real. This is really how we become who we become.  So, there really is not alternative. If we want to be and become a loving person, wise, kind, thoughtful, understanding, then we have to practice those things.

 


Drawing and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by the Buddha

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The Coward’s Revenge – Love and Hate #2

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Infinite Versions

I came up with the idea of the drawing at the top first. But then I thought more about it and realized that it needed a second illustration so I drew the two men on a separate napkin.  Then I thought of another version and drew it. Then I thought of another one, and another one. Then I realized there are infinite versions of the coward hating someone who intimidates them.  In America alone you can see a hatred of Muslims (or more accurately, pretty much everyone from the Middle East, Muslim or not), LGBTs, women, African-Americans, gun owners, gun regulators, Democrats, Republicans, Chinese, Mexicans (or anyone speaking Spanish), Jews. rich people, poor people, celebrities, disabled, Atheists, Christians, Goths, Pageant Queens, fat people, thin people and more. The list is indeed infinite. 

The Box marked X

The simple truth is, the coward can’t handle figuring out a way to live with one or more of these groups. They don’t want to struggle with the difficult emotional and psychological work of opening their mind to try to understand these other people. That takes courage.  It’s much easier to simply categorize whatever group is intimidating you into being unworthy of your attention and contemplation. Just put them in the box marked X and hate the box. It’s so much easier.

The Danger

It’s also so much more dangerous. Of course the obvious danger is what happened in Orlando and South Carolina and on back at different locations for decades now, and that is violence that kills and maims. It is what we most want to avoid.  But there is another danger, not as immediately disastrous, but perhaps equally terrible in the long view, and that is a life wasted by hate.  Many hateful people aren’t going to go out in a blaze of shame by killing themselves and others. But they are going to live a life of hate and end up on their deathbed having only that hate to show. What a tragedy that is.

Admit It

So, what do you do about it if this is you or someone you love?  It’s to admit your intimidation. Admit your fear. Start with what is at the root of it all. That requires courage. But the benefit of summoning that courage instead of hiding in the cave of cowardice is that you get to be in the light. You get to escape the hate and move towards love. And once you escape it in one area of your life, it gets to be infectious. Loving becomes easier, it becomes something you want, something you look forward to, something you can give away with pride. And, it’s something that then starts to transform others around you.

That is worth any level of harsh self-evaluation.


Drawings and commentary © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com

Quote by George Bernard Shaw, 1856-1950, Irish Playwright


 

What Must We Do? – Love and Hate #1

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What Won’t Change

I believe that if nothing happened in Congress to legislate responsible gun regulations after Sandy Hook, nothing will happen now , after Orlando. I think that is terribly sad but I do think it is true.

What Can Change

But, I do believe there is something we can do every day. And it can actually have a profound effect, and that is to examine what builds hate up so much that a person believes they are justified in committing mass slaughter (or individual killing). What is it that brings them to that point? and most importantly, who and what can help them never get to that point?

Brain Illness vs ‘Normal’

Obviously someone who is mentally ill (more accurately, has a brain disease) is one sort of case who takes a lot of effort, in informal and formal environments, to get help and resolution.  But what about the many who would not be classified as mentally ill if they had a formal evaluation?  What about those who are law-abiding citizens, who can by guns legally, who also happen to be very angry or depressed, or jealous, or anxious, or bitter or any number of feelings and emotions that are taking them to a very dark place? What can we do about and for those people?

Helping

How do we help them lay down the burden of anger and hate? First and foremost it always starts with our own behavior. We have to be the example of someone who has already done that and continually does it.  Then we have to be willing to see others clearly, to not make excuses when someone is angry, to not enable them to continue, but to stop and confront them in love and compassion, not in judgment, letting the person know you are on their side and in their corner wanting the very best for them. If we don’t feel safe confronting them, then we need to find friends, family or professionals that might help. But in many cases it’s really simply about asking them about their feelings and talking it through with them, giving them hope they can get beyond the hate they have. It’s not a simple process, but it can be done.

Guns Again

One of the arguments I hate the most from gun advocates is the, ‘Hey, if they don’t have guns, they will use knives’ argument. I think it is absurd and wrong. BUT, it does point the way to something that is true, and that is hate exists before violence, just as Jesus taught. Murder starts in the heart as hate.  Even if we did have effective gun control (which we should) we would still have hate.  What we do with that, how we transform it into love, is the essential work that will never go away, no matter how many or how few guns we have.


Drawing, commentary and quotes © 2016 Marty Coleman | napkindad.com


 

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