Idea-ology 101

Ideology. What a funny word. What does it even mean? Do you ever hear it and feel a bit puzzled? Do you ever use it and feel a bit puzzled? Have you never heard it before? Feeling puzzled?

Good, me too.

The last week has been an interesting theme for me in regards to my choices and purpose with regards to the kind of person that I want to be. Due to a specific proposition passed in California this election day, I have decided to take some time to think about what I stand for and the kind of person I want to be in this world and the values that I want to uphold, and what it might mean for me to uphold myself and my values. What could I lose to uphold them at any given cost?

I recently asked an amazing friend of mine the following question (paraphrased because I’m not that good at remembering speech verbatim): “In light of the recent popular-vote decisions regarding minorities made in government, what is the best method in effecting change in the world for minority groups?”Β  I was looking for something along the lines of “Rally! Of course!” or “Don’t Rally! Sit peacefully like Gandhi.” or “Get everyone on your side.” Or “don’t support the system at all.” or some action that I could do that would somehow move the world around me.

You want to know his answer? “You must think about your ideology. You must be mindful of what you want to uphold. You must fully explore your values and know how it might effect the world before it can effect the world.” How interesting of a thought… I think this response goes along the lines of something that Gandhi might have said with regards to change in “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” How can one be the change if one has no firm concept of what that change is? How do you get this concept? What drives you to create and define these concepts of change that you must be to effect the world?

I was just thinking in terms of rallies and protests, what does it take to be the kind of person to march down a street with signs and chants, peacefully stating their disenchantment. What must you know about yourself and what you believe to take up that sign and march? Furthermor, what kind of person does it take to do this peacefully, compassionately, and non-blaming… and how different would this effect change as opposed to doing it more forcefully and disgrunted? Is there a difference in the potential effect?

I was just thinking about this because I heard, recently, of a movement of people who choose to do it more creatively and peacefully and include crafts and arts in the area that they stood, vigilant, singing. Do you think that this type of protest would or could be any differently moving than a more disenfranchised protest may be? Are there greater benefits for one over the other?

All of these questions are questions that I have been asking myself over and over this week. What is the greatest way to effect change in the world? To effect change in yourself, I think, is the only way to effect change in the world. At least that’s the realization that I’m working through right now. What do you guys think?


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16 Responses to “Idea-ology 101”

  1. Lydia Says:

    ‘To effect change in yourself, I think, is the only way to effect change in the world. ‘
    I believe it too.

    I want people, all over the world, to be kind, real, honest, compassionate, understanding and enjoy life.
    Therefore, I’m doing my very best to be a good human being myself. And, hopefully, people will get inspired and do the same.

    It might sound simple or cheesy but, believing that it is possible to effect change gives hope and purpose and makes life even more meaningful.

  2. taylor nikole Says:

    oh this is what your facebook status was about…. im slow

  3. taylor nikole Says:

    okay I actuallly find myself thinking about what I believe in myself. usually I come to the conclusion that if I believe in something so strongly why try to shape that belief and ‘moral’ in other ways. which is weird because sometimes we try to shape people to go towards our beliefs more…. when they are doing the same exact thing as us.

    but its true… first we have to change ourselves.

    I find myself debating whether or not I should change or how I am now in a way is ‘originally for the better’.

    everyone wants to change.. and change the world… for better or for worse…. so you are kinda just stuck believing what u believe in and pushing forward..

    haha im babblinngg πŸ™‚

    and going off of the other reply to don’t mind me πŸ˜€ hehe

  4. Gina Says:

    It takes time and dedication to protest. But it also requires that you know about the subject at hand as well. Why protest something if you’re completely ignorant to the facts and what you’re protesting for or against? [there is a difference between ignorance and stupidity].

    Knowledge is power. And the more you know about a certain subject, for example, Prop 8 or Scientology, then the better likely you are to educate others and maybe even have them protest with you.

    Even if you think that you’re doing something little, you are actually doing something that could impact the world.

  5. MarilyneL Says:

    To me, ideology sounds bad. I only have heard this word in my religion/ philosophy class where someone stands so much to his beliefs that it becomes obsessive and bad, even if the first thought was a good idea… However, standing for what you believe is obviously not bad, even great! least, until you start having crazy ideas..:P I has to be peaceful.

  6. taylor nikole Says:

    well what if you consider your belief(s) your life?
    sometimes you have to make a belief a priority to get anything changed or accomplished.

  7. Chris Says:

    I agree with Taylor. Great people like Martin Luther King Jr, Gandhi, all the women who fought in making equality happen for all women, and others had to dedicate their lives for their cause to make change happen.
    You have to consider to what extent you are willing to risk emotional, physical, financial security for something you believe in.
    I do think w/e you believe in is bound to show up in what you put out to the world ( arts, vids, music, writing) which is why it is important to be informed in your beliefs and where you stand on issues.

  8. taylor nikole Says:

    amen sista!

  9. G Says:

    I was going to comment but TK and Chris took the words right off my fingers, so ditto πŸ˜› We are instruments of change *looks around* No seriously, they said it all haha. Damn them!

  10. taylor nikole Says:

    yep g… we love u too

  11. G Says:

    This is how I show love, I’m otherwise incapable of such πŸ˜› And you’re a dork too, so HA!

  12. skahahoo Says:

    Thassalotta good questions there Tabby. I’m gonna go to sleep soon, but I did want to respond to a couple things before this post disappears into the forgotten archives of GBD. πŸ˜‰

    I agree that change begins with the individual. However, for far-reaching change, the kind that transforms society or civilization for the rest of human history…for that kind of change to come sooner rather than later, waiting around for everyone else to change themselves would take too long. I think for the really big changes, there needs to be a synergy of events (the recent presidential election comes to mind as an example), and really? At the end of the day, you need to speak to power. Whoever holds the keys to the massive change you want to make, you need to reach them somehow. To me, this means getting them to see how they will benefit from the change, whether that be some kind of material gain or an affirmation of their own worldview.

    Which brings me to protests/marches/demonstrations…this may be cynical of me, but I don’t regard these as effective agents of change. I think they’re useful primarily for public relations, to keep an issue in the mind of the public so at least they’re thinking about it. I think a lot of people protest as much for themselves as for their cause, to feel like they’re doing something and not being passive. Because it’s highly unlikely that if I go to a protest that I’m going to win anyone over to my side, and just as unlikely that the opposing side will win me over. A lot of the people who go to protests, if they care enough about an issue to voice their support, then they’re pretty much going in with a certain mindset already, and a protest isn’t really the ideal place for meaningful dialogue.

    In medicine, we take an oath to “first, do no harm.” When it comes to issues that are important to me, I do my best to avoid spreading falsehoods or arguments that stand on shaky ground. This requires that I myself have to examine my own beliefs and put them to the test, so that should the time ever come for me to articulate my own thoughts, I do so in a way that is constructive and logically sound. But perhaps most importantly, I need to figure out how to communicate so that the other person hears me, to ease them into letting down their guard so that I can engage them. Listening is a lost art, I think, because it seems like everyone is more concerned about expressing opinions instead of receiving them. And I think that ultimately stems from a less-than-robust sense of self. My dad…lol…he likes to say, “An empty can makes a lot of noise.” lol. Parents and their sayings. Gotta love ’em. πŸ˜‰

  13. taylor nikole Says:

    awww thats what i say G…
    but i think you are capable πŸ™‚
    in a weird way LOL

  14. G Says:

    *looks around*

  15. taylor nikole Says:

    β€œAn empty can makes a lot of noise.”
    i have never once heard that

  16. Ashley Says:

    Change in the world definitely involves yourself. I believe that if anything is to change it all starts with you. So in terms if you don’t like the way something is done then change it. Just like with Global warming, if you believe it’s getting worse change it start recycling, start getting your community to help out, but if it’s something like the government you know you could quietly get signatures you know without making it a big deal and present it to them. Telling them why you think it’s a bad idea why you think they should be more helpful or do this to help out more. But yeah, Tabby you’re right it definitely starts with you changing first.

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