Geography of the Mind

Your Choice: In the mirror darkly or with clarity...

Paul's New Testament Biblical scripture 1 Corinthians 13:12 refers to the present and the future:

"For now we see in a mirror, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then I shall know fully as even I am fully known."

It alludes to the veil that is placed over us as we see ourselves and this world as opposed to the lifting of that veil to see ourselves and the world in full light in the afterlife. How you interpret that or make use of it depends on your religious beliefs. My thought is that it worth it's original face value as intended but also, interpreted slightly differently, in another more practical daily perspective.

We all view ourselves as in a mirror and the way in which we view ourselves in light of the present world, religious decisions aside, is also how we react to the world and in return how it reacts to us. Lifting the veil to view ourselves practically and pragmatically helps us understand ourselves better for self-improvement. It is not a new concept and accepted in contemporary society as psychologically sound. Should we see ourselves darkly, we will view and be viewed in our interactions with the world accordingly. The same is true if we see ourselves with as much clarity as possible and view ourselves more assuredly, in turn our interactions will reflect that.

What I see in this difficult era is how people view themselves very much determines the course they will take during a turbulent, uncertain period of their lives and the ongoing outcome. You can view yourself as a casualty and injured party in this economic downturn, which may be true if you've lost a job, income, home, family...most especially if it's been uneven and unfair. The difficulty is getting beyond the point of feeling like an underdog and getting to a place in your mind that rises above that thought in order to move on. Otherwise your reflection of yourself will only mire you even more into a downward spiral.

This requires taking possession of the dominion of yourself and claiming control over your emotions and thoughts, never an easy task but required to get a better impression of yourself to project to others. It requires the tough actions of claiming and occupying your own decisions, taking charge of your attitudes and actions by creating original thoughts or borrowing some and adapting them to your situation, regardless of external circumstances. If you are prepared for challenge, change and adversity, the more often it occurs and you cope with them, then it becomes more natural to you and subsequently less difficult.

It's building character, which is never easy but always rewarding in the long term.


  1. This is a very cool post. It ties into what I thought about at work today. I was thinking about my job, which requires lots of heavy lifting on occasion, and also requires math skills, logic, memory, and a lot of "non-blue-collar" qualities. Not seemingly so, anyway.

    Here's the thing: I was dragging 90-pound pieces of steel from behind a shear, working up a sweat, and kinda loving it. It's not how I'd want to spend all day, every day, but it was...fun.

    This week, work has FLOWN by. The last several have; 9-hour-days just dance by.

    Once I got all the metal onto the cart and stood around watching a press punch holes into it; it hit me: I must really like my job for 9 hours of THIS to fly by.

    After reading your blog, I don't think it's a case of loving the job. I think it's that I have a normally pretty happy attitude about it.

    I could go on and on about this, but I'll sum it up with this: I don't think anything positive ever came from anyone playing a victim, ESPECIALLY not a victim of their circumstances. If circumstances suck, make them NOT suck, or change them. I don't know, but I can't imagine the meaning of life is to be miserable. It isn't easy, but I know attitude helps in ways almost unimaginable.

    I don't know if any of this helped clarify my thoughts about your words in the least, but I hope it makes sense. Either way, it was a great blog. Thanks for posting it, JR!

  2. The victim mentality, as pop psychology calls it, is going to be the ruination of a lot of people in this country if they don't get over it.

    My job, although not physical but very mental, has rote parts to it that bother some people. I never think about them because I make a sort of game out of them, turn them into something interesting or let my mind float above them and think about something else.

    Interesting, I see the full range of clients in my work, from "blue collar" welders and engineers to "professionals" like doctors and lawyers and everything in between. You know what? The blue collar guys are usually the smartest at following instructions, not being difficult, figuring things out and being generally nice guys without an attitude. The financial and sales people are the worst to cope with and a lot of medical people have god complexes the ought not to have because they're not very good for much.

    As a matter of fact I went to one as a patient the other day and it was a waste of a co-pay. I figured out the problem better than he did.

    This society is peculiar with it's judgments on the value of people by what job they hold, it should be more on how well they have their job figured out and their attitude towards it and other people.

    I think there's a vlog in that. Hey! Thanks for reading and commenting! You make me think.


    This society