Thursday, February 14, 2013

The Jesus Complex

Amidst the lonely corridors, crevasses, highways and bi-ways of this life, it was great to spend a night in the big city with some true friends. In my life, I've had a ramshackle ride when it comes to people being there for me - and in the same breath, me being there for them.

But when you find the friends who will speak out to you - across the chasms of doubt and darkness and worries - and who will say 'Who gives a fuck about everything else because YOU are what really matters', those are the friends we need to embed ourselves within.

Often, and in many circumstances, our biggest problem as humans is that we can forget ourselves. We march through the shuffle and demands of this life, but we do it without an identity...or a soul. We become people who are solely and squarely concerned about that age old trap of 'making other people happy'.

Let's call it 'The Jesus Complex'.

We feel like that because of the way we've been raised, or because of the things we believe deep down, we need to constantly put ourselves second in life. Second to your wife. Second to your husband. Second to your children. Second to your job. Second to your church. Second to your community.

But what kind of life is that? Sure - Jesus really did that. But I ain't him. I'm only me.

So onward we plod down this lonely path - this secondary trail that is filled with expressions like 'It's ok - it's ok - go ahead, sir'. Or 'I'm fine, really. Go on ahead'.

I'm not saying we can't look out for others - I'm not saying that at all. We need to get out of our eye-bleeding, smartphone, cell-phone, text and image based realities that we use to placate ourselves with. So often now, instead of truly reaching out to a friend for a suggestion or a helpful idea, or to talk about a struggle, we can get mad and then go online and tell thousands of people exactly how we feel.

We publish the things that don't need to be published. We live in ones and zeroes and not reality.
We watch fights happen when we know we could easily make that 911 phone call - or at least yell something in distraction. We see old people struggling with groceries and think 'next time'. We bombard sidewalks with our strollers and project an attitude that says 'clear the way for me, because I'm a mother or a father - and damn you for thinking I don't deserve to have a red carpet rolled out'.

We need to get our heads out of our asses.

But when it comes to our happiness, that is something we cannot fuck with. Sure - we can't be happy all of the time but when it is within our control, and we turn towards that secondary trail willingly, there is something wrong, there.

I've been unhappy for a long, long time. And so many times, I questioned that thought. I thought 'maybe there is something wrong with me - maybe I'm at fault, here for wanting to be happy'. I thought that the secondary life I've been leading was the way to peace - to joy - to ultimate fulfillment.

But I now know that statement is a lie. We cannot go on in a darkened world when a light switch is within our reach. If we are a people of belief - a people of any sort of form or semblance of hope, we will strive for happiness. We will want to infect and inspire others with it. We will no longer be playing a dusty piano in a boarded off room - we will throw open the windows and let the notes out into the evening air.

This Jesus Complex - it might have right beginnings but in the end, we need that happiness. We need that meaning. We need that substance. We cannot be held accountable for the actions of other people - we can only be accountable for ourselves.

If there is a loving and all-knowing God, I believe that he would want us to be happy.

Luke 11:46

Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them."

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