Friday, November 14, 2008

The Cost of things

Perhaps what everyone wants is respect. But everything has a price. Nothing comes free. -The cost-benefit rule of thumb: anything may be possible, but nothing comes free. New cars, money, power, prestige, titles; the American dream to have; all of this has its cost, and the cost is not only monetary. These things come at a cost of our priorities, our perspectives of life, and the meaning that we give to our world. "Sometimes, we get lost, and try to live at any cost, but get nothing back for what we paid." goes an old song lyric. What it expresses is that sometimes we search for meaning, for reason, for respect, love, and admiration in external things, in how others perceive us. These things: the new cars, money, or the aesthetic lifestyle, the spiritual, intellectual quest etc… are suppose to somehow guarantee us others respect and admiration. We work hard at acquiring these things, and are so surprised when others simply respond haphazardly or indifferently. To respect is one thing; to expect is another.

-And on the other hand, so often we are asked to respect someone, or something, but we cannot seem to see a reason for it. We are simply required to give our respect to everything, to everyone because they exist, or they have achieved something, or perhaps nothing at all; they are merely present; they are there in front of us. We are expected to respect because we have a relationship to or with it, or them. It seems to the world that each of us has a born right to be respected regardless of what, why, or how we are. Many times money seems to be a ground for admiration and respect. If you have it, you are to be respected and revered. Position seems to require that everyone under the certain title is a minion to its every whim, wish, need, and want without question. The powerful are to be respected for their power, and the needy are to be respected for their need. We see people with money, power, position, and fame and we see the attention, and the "respect" they achieve for the things that they have, or have accomplished, and we want that for ourselves: all that they have, and the respect as well. We want the things to give us the respect that we believe we deserve. Many times the act of being poor, a victim of circumstance, or society; self-inflicted lifestyles, belief systems, or lack of, demands respect from us without question, or comment. We are victims of evils beyond our control, or of society; we belong to an accepted group with a long lineage of altruistic ideals. To make matters worse, all of this, and more, is bought and sold; taught as well, to be the ultimate goal in life. But to be respected, one must deserve respect.

Everything has a cost, but the cost is not always what we think it is. To be respected is to have respect for yourself not for what you have, who you think that you are, or who you know. To be admired is to admire yourself for who you are not for what you have achieved, where you have been, how much you have. Many times the material things that we surround ourselves with are only a fa├žade that attracts people, like honey attracts flies. They may not care for you, but they see you for what they perceive themselves to want: the things that you have acquired. To decide upon a lifestyle for yourself is to take the responsibilities of that lifestyle for your own, but be sure to understand what those are, and what they mean. The truth is very often something extremely different than what we perceive it to be at first glance. So be sure to know what is being paid for before you lay your payment down, and be assured that there will be a payment, due upon receipt.


Penny said...

Hey silverfish, I am here ! actually I left two messages yesterday, but they did not post.
Anyway my poor hubby is totally jealous now, we have a "shack" in the city as we call it, and the shack is our, so we have that much at least.

I mentioned about posting the plans on your blog for anyone to peruse, and wondered what you thought of that idea?

the Silverfish said...

Penny, Sorry about the jelousy thingy, that has not and is not my intention. It's been a bitch of a lot of work getting to where I'm at but it has been worth it , I think.

Sadly more and more people are stuck in the burbs and they will be the ones hit the worst.

As far as the plans for the passive solar panels, I'll have to have them done up by someone smarter than I as I can't seem to use a cad program, and I couldn't draw a bath let alone a plan for anything, But I will try to get it up as soon as possible.

Very simple to make and they do provide an amazing amount of suplemental heat. Anyone who can build a box can build these.

Penny said...

oh no apologies necessary, I meant it in the kindest way, it is just the kind of life he would have liked for us.

Anyway, were ok, we don't live in the suburbs, we are urban dwellers, in the heart of our small city.

But if worse comes to worse, we have enough of a yard, to have a sizeable garden and a couple of chickens.
we're lucky as we used to have the alleyway driveway/parking that was common in the older sections of town, but that was all added onto the property some time ago as additional footage, so we actually have a good size back yard.

We already garden and save seeds.
my hubby can build alot of stuff, and has already constructed a terrific garden shed for us, a new back porch, and we do most of our renovations ourselves, as much as we can, anyway.
I have painted, stripped, stained, etc., etc though I am not so good with power tools.

I look forward to the plans being posted, I am sure someone besides me will be interested in them
thanks so much silverfish

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