Addiction & AA

So I was reading a blog posting the other day about Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) which I found to be rather interesting. Should you want to read it here you can do so. To give a brief synopsis, the posting goes through several myths or issues with the general AA program. I’m not sure if I totally agree with them and thought I’d make a post following my last one about addiction as a bit of a rebuttal or commentary on the myths that this other posting expresses.

One “myth” that the posting suggests exists is that you have to “hit bottom” in order to get well. I think it is true the addict has to hit a low point or else you have to often have something give you a jolt that says how they are living needs to change and your life will be BETTER if you change. It does not necessarily have to be becoming homeless or living in a cardboard box because they cannot afford anything else. It just has to be something in their life’s experience that is not something they’re willing to live with anymore and thus shows them that making changes in their life is beneficial for them, their social network, and perhaps their community at large in some way. Maybe I am wrong, but it seems to me that something that jolts the addict out of distorted thinking and minimization or denial is necessary for snapping back into reality to realize that change is beneficial or necessary.

I was watching an episode of Lindsay on OWN the other day which is a documentary series following Lindsay Lohan in her path to recovery and re-establishing herself in her professional life/community. Her coach for the first 30 days with regard to her addictions was seen talking to the camera stating that addiction is a “self-centered thinking disease” which rang true to me. It seems to me that addicts are so focused on how they are feeling and whether they need their substance or behavior of which they are addicted to in order to feel comfortable. They need to focus on what they need in order to feel satisfied or comfortable in their lives. Thus I feel there is some merit to insinuating a selfishness of an addict. That is not to say that the soul or being of the addict is intrinsically selfish, but it is to say they are so enmeshed within their ego that they cannot see beyond themselves necessarily, and thus “hitting bottom” allows them to break free from ego enmeshment and begin to see others and how their focus on themselves has had a negative effect on the broader community. Their higher self is freed from the shackles of the addiction to see all that it has done that the ego enmeshment tried to hide over time.

That brings me to another myth in the post: “You must surrender your will to get well.” I suppose that can be taken in different ways, but the way I see it is to surrender ego enmeshment to the higher self so that the higher being within us or that manifestation of the higher being that lives in each individual at a soul level is able to see the damage that is done to the body, to the possessions, the families and the community. Upon surveying the damage, admitting to it and showing some kind of remorse for actions is helpful to others to see that the addict really is not selfish in essence, but their addiction was a result of being so enmeshed with their ego that they had no ability to truly perceive much beyond themselves and their needs or desires. It allows the addict to make amends with all things and people in their lives. It allows the process of forgiveness and letting go of the past to happen because their is no longer a need to hold on to anything or to grasp at straws to find ways that the egoic self can survive and profit. It does not have to be overly religious as I perceive it, not by any means. It might be spiritual, but I did not have to use the religious terms for any form of higher power in order to write my explanation for this point about AA to be deemed important to the process. Surrendering is not to say that the individual is incapable of managing their life and therefore need to sit back and put their feet up while the universe takes control and makes everything happen in the world. In fact, it might be a God or the universe that is responsible for pulling families and communities through when an addict has a position of power or some high level of status. Perhaps God comes in for those people when they have no other choice in their understanding as a way to do anything with the situation. The addict might just be surrendering their ego enmeshment so that they realize how difficult it is for others to have coped with the monstrosities that they had to endure due to the addiction.

I’m not sure whether counting days of abstinence is necessarily useful. It doesn’t necessarily have to mean you go back to zero days when you have a bad day or week of relapsing. It could, in fact, be empowering to consider how far the addict went in life between relapsing periods. Perhaps their first time being clean they lasted 1 year, the second period following their first relapse lasted 5 years. It would be a means of showing the addict they are improving. They are able to go further and further every time they focus on being clean and sober.

I’m not a fan of labels, and lumping all addicts into a category such as “drunks” may only make them feel more self conscious or feel less confident in being who they are and having comfort in being themselves. I’ve known people who have indicated that some AA groups are not for them, that they found themselves denying that some AA group could help them because the members of the group simply did not fit with who the individual was or is. They need a group that has people in it who are like them, who they might aspire to be like in order to know that it is a right fit for them. Perhaps a bunch of homeless people who do not appear likely to be a university professor would not be appropriate for a hard working addict that simply wants to achieve more of a status in life but feels unable to do so. That individual might feel more at home in a community of AA members who include someone like a mayor or government official, a university professor, someone who is admitting to not being able to handle things in their life and is involved with a substance or behavior that is done repetitively by them and is thus an addiction. This point in the myths post also suggests that the term “drunks” implies addicts are pleasure seekers which I’m arguing their ego is, their enmeshment with their ego makes them seem like pleasure seekers but that isn’t necessarily what they are or who they are at a soul level or necessarily what their higher self is and they may not be so enmeshed with their ego that that other part of themselves isn’t able to show through at times. It very well can show through, but just not all the time.

When I read the myth about things being one day at a time, I couldn’t help but consider Eckhart Tolle. There really is only the present moment, so taking things one day at a time or one moment at a time is all you can do because there is no way to really live in the future. We make it up as we go in the moment. There is no benefit to living in the past. It’s done and unalterable. We can have regrets, but we might as well forgive ourselves and others for these where it helps because beating ourselves up over something that happened 10 years ago has no positive effect on the present moment other than to fuel negative emotions. I don’t think the one day at a time approach is intended at all to be demeaning to addicts. The ego enmeshed self might take offense to the approach of one day at a time, but that’s an egoic defense mechanism to give and keep power within the ego. It is nothing more or less than that.

Depending how you look at an approach to healing of any kind, whether it’s healing addiction, or healing physically or any other way. The intent of the process is important to perceive correctly in order to understand how it all works. If it is not perceived correctly, it will be misinterpreted and the perceiver will be unable to comprehend the process from the misinterpreted view point quite likely. Perhaps I am off my rocker, and totally view Alcoholics Anonymous and its way of be as different from my perception to what it really is as Pluto is different from Earth.

Addiction & Living

Lately I came across a video from a previously run late night show Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher. I found it interesting what Slash said about drugs being deeply enmeshed in our society, that it’s everywhere. You can watch the conversation below, the comments from Slash about drugs being throughout society start around 2:50.

I also liked a line that Slash said Keith Richards once said, “I slept in a chandelier last night, but I still showed up on time.” Kind of an odd place to sleep, but it shows you have to be dedicated and be punctual in your work. People like others to be able to be counted on, to know they will keep their word and be there when they said they would be there. But that leads to some questions too.

Can you really truly be there, if you regularly do drugs or have a dependence on some kind of substance such that part of your mind is focused on getting your next drink or next fix? You’re looking forward to having the effects of the substance again once they have worn off, part of your mind (perhaps you could call it your egoic mind) is focused on covering up that suffering such that you have the effects again from the substance, no longer suffering withdrawal from the lack of effects. It’s difficult to be psychologically present with others if your mind is in a pattern of use, withdraw, need to use again. I would think that these different focuses take away from a sense of presence with people in the present moment, to use some of Eckhart Tolle’s terminology. It seems to me that it could take away from the strength of relationships because others inevitably come to realize you’re not truly “with them” when your mind is elsewhere with other goals than to truly connect with the people around you. Relationships are different in families with substance abuse and addiction, and it would totally make sense to me as to why this can be the case given what I’ve just stated. There is also the question of whether or not a person can function properly the next day or any time soon after mind altering substance use, whether or not they are punctual. Should they continue on with life as usual, or attempt to do so soon after substance abuse? Is it safe for surrounding people in their lives? Will being punctual pose dangers to other individuals or property in the event that the user is not fully present in the moment due to substance use?

In the above video clip as well, Slash mentions not having rock ‘n’ roll without drugs. That may be the case, but at the same time it’s interesting that in the first of 10 webcasts between Oprah and Eckhart Tolle about his book A New Earth, he indicates he tried acid one time and admits that his new awareness that he discusses in The Power of Now, and A New Earth, is much better than the experience he found with acid, even though there are similarities. The experience is more “violent” according to Tolle in comparing the acid trip to a natural trip into presence. He states that there is “no room for thinking anymore” as the acid trip magnifies the sense perceptions so strongly. Whereas in the perceptions Tolle describes naturally coming with the dissolving of the ego, they gradually come more clearly over time as opposed to violently and suddenly appearing. There seems to be a difference of force vs. allowing space for things to happen. You can jump right into the plot, or you can set the stage for the show to commence.

What are your thoughts? Would you say that substance use/addiction are ingrained in society? Is it best to try and take control of life? Is it helpful to try and set the stage for what you feel is right, and let things unfold?

Treated, Possible Death Penalty

I’ve been hearing reports about the surviving Boston Bomber being treated in hospital for gunshot wounds which include one to his neck that limits his ability to speak.  I find it interesting that in the same reports, they mention he is charged with something that can carry the death penalty.  I guess they need him in reasonable health so he can communicate through legal proceedings, but it seems inconsistent to heal and then put to death an individual, does it not?

Daily Prompt: Million-Dollar Question

Daily Prompt: Million-Dollar Question.

I find the question “Why do I blog?” an interesting one.  I blog, I guess, because I enjoy writing and it gives me a place to get my ideas out there, see if anyone has comments about it to get me thinking more on the topic and just be able to put it out there so it’s not ruminating in my mind anymore.

The whole getting it out there might be the main purpose for writing for me.  It’s therapeutic and allows me to put ideas out in a different way, sharing as much or as little about my life as I desire to do on any given topic.  It may or may not contribute to a career.  It may or may not have much influence in anyone else’s lives.  But it is worthwhile for the self to put out those ideas that flow through the fingers.

Unity or Separation?

“On days like this there are no Republicans or Democrats—we are Americans, united in concern for our fellow citizens.” -President Obama, in the wake of Boston Marathon bombing – April 15, 2013

The era of hyphenated liberals ends right here, right now. Tonight.” – Justin Trudeau, leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, in a speech following the announcement that he won around 80% of the vote for leadership of the Liberal Party of Canada, April 14, 2013

Firstly, I am shocked and saddened by the events of today.  It is horrible to see so much violence happening in the world throughout history and in recent times.  But the above recent statements got me thinking about what is at the core of such violence, hatred, and negative behavior in the world.

I found it interesting to note similar statements being made by politicians in two different countries in two completely different situations. One of the statements being made in reference between political parties and the other in reference to interactions within a political party. Both statements speak of uniting together as one, in a common purpose, to make positive things happen.

One might come from a victory of a party leader, and the other might come in the wake of a terrible tragedy, but both have a great message in their statement within speeches directed at their respective situations within the last 20 some odd hours.

It calls into question why do we separate ourselves from each other? Why do we have terrorists, citizens, and victims? Why do we have reds and blues, greens, yellows, oranges and others? Are we not all one under the umbrella of the human race?

That being said, I do fight battles whether within or outside of myself where I find myself pitted against someone or something generally somehow. I am not superhuman or above others. But I like to think I can come to terms with my differences from others and realize that in the end, unity reigns above all else.

But I wonder, is this kind of thing about separation vs. unity at the root of our issues in the first place, or is there something else at the core completely?

Technology: Presence & Time

So I’ve been pondering what to write for a next post.  I was looking at other posts with the daily prompt about use of phones which caught my attention.  They are useful, but they can also control you if you let them because they ring off the hook and people can nowadays text you like there’s no tomorrow.  Texts can be simple like “Dinner’s ready” from a family member to another family member in a different room, or about getting together.  They can be more complicated telling a story of something that recently happened, though that could also be a phone call instead of a text since longer messages aren’t as often sent by text as far as I can tell in my minimal text experience.  It depends though, sometimes that is the case and sometimes it is not.  Either way, technology can take you away from the present moment and into another space, for one reason or another.

This brings me to another pondering, as I’ve recently read The Time Machine by H.G. Wells.  Now The Time Traveller within the book travels hundreds of thousands of years into the future.  He views completely different worlds that are nothing like that where we currently reside.  The social hierarchy of creatures is vastly different, being that it seems humans have evolved into two different species somewhat, at least it appears that the Time Traveller interprets these two species as being derived from humans if I read it correctly.  Some might consider such a long way off in the future to be a daring feat for someone to take when trying out a time machine, but is it that big of a deal?  Would it be better to jump 5, 10 or maybe 50 years into the future to see where things have evolved to before jumping elsewhere?  Would it be most useful to see yourself in the future or past when traveling time, or seeing beyond yourself and to look at the world itself?  I’m not sure I have all these answers, but I think it would intrigue me more to see where the world and humanity goes than to see exactly where i end up or where I’ve been.  Some days my opinion might differ, but I’m living in the moment right now as I create this post.

What are your thoughts?

Mission: Purpose?

Who am I? Who do I want to be?  I did write about this kind of, in my last post which happens to have been way off on October 14, 2012.  Sorry about the wait, for any faithful followers I might have.  But even if I have no faithful followers, so be it!  Fortune and fame have their perks; they feed the ego perhaps, allowing more and more gain.  That is, at least until their downfalls, which are seen from some who reach certain levels of fame and fortune.  I’ll let you name examples, should you choose.

Anyhow, I’ve been thinking for weeks about writing another blog post.  Christmas holidays seemed like a good time to work on writing one, and I did write.  I wrote a matter of maybe a sentence or two.  But there was a lot going on over the weeks with family and whatnot.  And let me tell you, where I spent the holiday was plenty busier than the place I tend to reside ever gets!  And, being that I’m an introvert, this might surprise you, but I enjoyed it!  However, I had times of uneasiness knowing I’d be asked what I was up to and where I’m going with my life.  It’s kind of To Be Determined, you could say.  I have a few things going on, but I’m not sure that the things that have been happening are what I want to potentially have going on in my life for the next potential 80+ years.  But for that matter, I could potentially have a day or less to live and therefore one year let alone 80 or more would be irrelevant.  Still, thinking of the future is good; I can have goals and have steps to take toward reaching said goals.  No one said I can’t live now, and have a vision for the future.  Even if they did, who am I to just do as what someone else says?  I admire those who don’t, so I can be one of them too, can’t I?  Sure, I respect the concerns of others who care and who want the best for me.  I’m open to other ideas, and maybe they’re right for me or maybe not.  I can try them out, see what happens.  Ultimately I little control over what happens, barring my own effort toward the making or breaking of it.

This reminds me of a line I’ve been told multiple times, that goes something like this:  “You do the natural, God will do the supernatural.”  Whether you call it God, the Divine, the Force, magic (though it’s kind of different than what many people would call magic), or anything else; there seems to be something from beyond that has a way of working things out sometimes.  It’s not really explainable, it just is.  It works with you.  So, let’s just do this.  It may or may not lead to anything or accomplish anything, but it might be the best thing I ever did too, time will tell.  Time is quite powerful, isn’t it?

Thoughts: Blogs, presence & Enjoying life

I have not posted much in the last couple of months.  It might, in part, be because I’ve found myself pondering things more deeply than necessary.  Then again, maybe it is necessary since people such as Socrates have said that there is value in examining life.  I’ve been questioning what goals I have for writing, if any.  I have also questioned whether such goals are overshadowed sometimes by the concept of having viewers of posts and attempting to post things others would want to see/read.

There’s also that thought that things I post should simply come from me.  They should just be what I’m drawn to write about as my daily life progresses.  I can get lost in the logistics of how frequently to post, what to post that will be of interest to people to read, whether there’s anything at all of value in even writing anything and where does all this fit in as far as where I want to go in life.  Then there are the days where I wonder if I have any clue of what I want or where I want to go, which only eats up time that can be used to get there of course.

All of this aside, a lot of what I ponder these days is related to nature vs. materialism you might say.  When I use the word “materialism” I am thinking of things like fortune and fame; popularity and riches.  It would be great to have that few grand available to buy this or that which would seemingly make my life easier such as a wheelchair accessible van as I need a wheelchair for mobility.  I could go many more places much faster if I had such a vehicle.  I can perfectly well get around the local community, given the mass transit that is available.  But, like most things, it has its limitations.  It has pros and cons.  Time to travel takes longer usually, especially if used to get from one city to another.  It’s easy enough to get in and out of a normal car and have someone put the wheelchair in the trunk though so it’s not totally necessary for either of the above options when traveling between cities.  All that’s needed is someone with said car to be able to make it happen.

Focusing back on the writing of blog posts, though, I guess by nature I would mean the nature of human interaction or communication of ideas.  The materialism aspect would be more on the numbers of viewers, the amount of comments and popularity overall of the blog.  Communication is more of a goal for me from the start, as opposed to who views the blog or how much exposure it gets.  That being said, a conversation requires multiple people and/or points of view which means a certain amount of exposure is required in order to achieve these people and points of view.

Then one day, not overly long ago, a book I received for Christmas last year and lent out to a friend from school was returned to me.  That book F**k it by John C Parkins, which I remember feeling a lot lighter during and after reading it, made life seem a lot simpler.  The concept behind the words in said book is to take life easy and not worry about things so much.  It’s a lot more than that, as the book covers various things from God and anarchy, to relationships, to work among other things.

It’s as simple as saying “F**k it” and leaving the stress and worry in favor of peace, easing the mind and allowing things to be as they are.  The reality is that you cannot change the past, and you cannot predict the future to be any certain way 100%.  The future is bound to be slightly, or completely, different than you anticipate but the one thing that you can count on is that it will be interesting!  Maybe it’s best, then, to just go with the flow to see what comes in the NOW.  Maybe it’s best to see all life’s jewels as they come rather than waiting for something else all the time.  That something else might never come, and you might miss out on another thing that was right under your nose and disappeared without a moment’s notice.  If you don’t stop to smell the roses while they’re there, and you’re too busy collecting as many as possible to have the biggest and best collection, you may not get to ever experience the amazing aroma.  You may also not truly notice the beauty before you, until it starts wilting and withering away.

Denialism & Colonization

A concept that I first formally learned about through reading Michael Specter’s book Denialism is the idea of setting aside reality, to push forward with your own agenda, or avoid a reality which is perhaps less acceptable to ones self.  Specter tends to apply this concept to science and technology, where it relates to the medical field and drugs/medicine themselves.  He touches on such things as vaccines vs. autism, homeopathy and going organic compared to non-organic foods and the like, as well as the scientific study of drugs such as Vioxx and their results vs. the reality which companies and such looking to sell the drug were interested in seeing.  Somewhat of a political aspect of denialism is also shown in the book, particularly around AIDS/HIV and Africa.  I found it to be an intriguing book!  It has sparked some thoughts in my mind as to things I could write.  Therefore, I may write further about the book in another post if I see fit, but I thought applying the general concept to a trilogy written by Kim Stanley Robinson, the books Red Mars, Green Mars, and Blue Mars would be appropriate.

The Mars trilogy takes the human population from planet Earth and sees it colonize the planet Mars over a couple of centuries, starting around the 21st century.  It sees us through growing troubles on the planet earth, while mostly focusing on the development of things on the (initially) Red planet.  The main characters seen throughout the three books live on Mars and go through the normal issues which we see in our everyday life such as conflicts of various natures and relationships growing and conflicting.  The thing that interested me most was that they are also speaking of various perspectives; from political, scientific, economic, and religious/philosophical, among others that affect the overall outlook of the new Martian civilization.

As with probably just about anything, there is a form of denialism which takes place in the trilogy.  In fact, one could say that this denialism that comes to my mind at the moment, is what caused troubles on earth to worsen; if not begin.  It is that of corporations looking out for themselves with little or no thought of the environment, its plants, nor animals, nor its people which as a whole were ultimately responsible for creating them out of nothingness in the initial stages of industrialization.

Corporations, in the trilogy, become larger bodies called “transnationals” or “transnats” and they are less focused on a democratic way of operation and more on making bigger and bigger gains; the goal being to compete to see who might become the biggest and ultimately be able to control the interplanetary market.  There are buyouts of smaller companies in the process to become bigger and better.  They have their own intentions for development on Mars, along with all those perspectives coming from the initial 100 people who first arrived on the planet.  The transnats become metanats who want to take control of what goes on within the Mars civilization.  I remember that some of the discussion amongst the first 100 was around different concepts and was intrigued that Buddhist concepts were referred to in discussing the fate of the mars civilization that would be built.

A Buddhist outlook is much different from that of the corporate cultures in the novels.  It is one where living in harmony is of utmost importance to strive toward as opposed to focusing upon the ego and desire.  A Buddhist outlook or philosophy tends to shy away from sins such as gluttony and greed.  So there is a big contrast in the novel between what some of the first colonizers of Mars had in mind for the planet and what could potentially come to said planet depending on which voices reign in the end.  I don’t want to give away too much of the story line in this post, so as not to spoil things for potential readers as to what comes of either the Earth or of the planet Mars.

But there is also much focus in the book on scientific development and just how development of Mars should take place.  Some believe in the more natural approach whereby living off the land is best, others have thoughts around wanting to play around with the planet’s atmosphere and land in order to have the planet mimic that of Earth’s geography in a sense.  Both of these seem like they could make sense, but one is more or less playing God and looking to be in control, and the other is going with the flow of things.  Clearly, people do not have full control though, as in the Mars Trilogy, right from the get-go things happen that are not planned or anticipated at all.  Life is a mystery.  You never know how things will unfold.

54th Anniversary of Michael Jackson’s birth

I thought that, today, it would be fitting to somehow acknowledge Michael Jackson on the anniversary of his birth, his 54th birthday. Though he may not be here in physical form anymore, being that he had the public following which he did, there is much that he left behind, from his creations to the perceptions of others as well as what you may call his teachings or ideas on life. He had the ability to show these ideas through the creation of music, performance, and short films throughout his life (as well as the occasional book and/or interview/speech).  In looking at things that he and others have said I found the following:

The media first turned the trial into a freak-show by emphasizing Jackson’s peculiarities rather than his humanity, and stoked the ratings with constant, trivializing coverage while other, far more important stories went under-reported or completely ignored in Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, North Korea, and Washington, D.C. The press might respond by saying, ”We gave the people what they wanted.” My response would be, ”My job is to give them what they want. When he steps into a recording studio, it’s Michael Jackson’s job to give them what they want. Your job is to give the people what they need.”

Stephen King, in “The Sideshow Has Left Town” (14 June 2005)

What an interesting excerpt from a piece written by Stephen King around Michael Jackson and his trial to fight off allegations of child abuse!  It looks to me like it really sets the record straight on what goals belong to which professional in the public arena.  Those who are intended to entertain, strive to give the public (to which they are entertaining) what that public wishes to see.  Those who are intended to bring forth world events on a regular basis (such as news media) are intended to give the people facts and news about the events going on around the world.

One could argue that the facts were being presented by news media as necessary pursuant to their roles.  However, my impression was often that there was some level of suggestion in many reports that had some implication of guilt on the part of Michael Jackson, long before the jury had any say in the matter.  Kind of unfortunate for it to be that way; what sells is what’s news, apparently.

From my perspective, Michael Jackson had the right idea:

Just because it’s in print doesn’t mean it’s the gospel.

He even had a song about it, Tabloid Junkie.  Anything can be said or written; the more bizarre, sensational or just plain “out there” the better it sometimes seems as far as sales and public interest.  I was rather shocked to see one particular story reported on CNN, as it was quite clearly to me the kind of thing of tabloids.  The idea of him having a voodoo curse put on people such as Stephen Spielberg among others, bathing in sheep blood, and ceremonially having cows slaughtered in relation to the curses is really bizarre.  At the time, I thought that CNN was a source for news, and I could never actually believe that story to be news no matter how much anyone might pay me or how much of a sales and marketing job was enforced upon me.  To give them the benefit of the doubt, they must have just momentarily confused the character Wacko Jacko with the man who is Michael Jackson.  They really seem like two completely different people.

This individual who may have put curses on people to get back at them for things, and slaughtering animals in the process seems nothing like Michael Jackson reacting the following way to an insect on stage (at about 2 minutes into the video):

It might stand out as different, unique, but with a completely different intent than the above.

Then there’s something Gotham Chopra, wrote, “Michael Jackson and Kim Jong Il” in The Huffington Post (5 July 2009) which speaks of Lisa Ling, and Euna Lee being detained in North Korea.  He spoke to Gotham about whether there might be anything that could be done.  Michael Jackson thought that maybe if Kim Jong II were a fan of his, that might enable him to sway the North Korean leader to free these two individuals.  He also said the following:

Gotham writes: “I explained to Michael that there were larger geo-politics involved, nuclear programs, a new administration trying to assert its foreign policy strategy (Obama), and another one in NK possibly going through some sort of transference of power.” Which might be a typical response from most people, but here’s a different and I would say a rather touching response:

“Yeah,” Michael said wistfully, “but if someone wants to do something good, they just can. They don’t really need to worry about all that other stuff.”

It might not always work to just out of the blue be able to do something good, but if it doesn’t I would like to pose the question:  Did we really believe we could accomplish that good thing and let that belief surpass any fear or uncertainty we felt about accomplishing the good act?

From Gotham Chopra’s account, it seems as though Michael Jackson goes beyond the role that Stephen King suggests is his role.  He not only gave the people what they wanted, through his skill and ability as an entertainer, but he wanted to give so much more.

As can be seen through the lyrics of such songs as Heal the World, Black or White, Man in the Mirror, Will you be There, Earth song, and others; Michael Jackson, or the power that used him as a vessel through which to communicate, had a vision of humankind living in community with one another, regardless of race or creed or other differences.  His music, his way of living seems to show humankind as best lived in communion with one another and with a Higher power (regardless of whether this Higher power might be a higher self within us, or something completely outside of us; perhaps a combination therein which is the Creator).  It can be argued that how he lived was strange and bizarre, but is that argument using sensationalism as a basis to prove its point, or does it take into account all sides including the good?  You can decide.

What a rollercoaster those 54 years have been!  I’m suddenly reminded of Michael’s “Leave me Alone” music video, which has imagery of the circus atmosphere and also includes a rollercoaster ride.  The song is from his Bad album, which celebrates its 25th anniversary with a release in September of Bad 25, including the first officially released concert from the Bad world tour.

Feel free to watch the “Leave me Alone” video here: