Cliff's Blog

A feel-good morning microblog of 10-second takeaways offering advice, insights, and inspiration to brighten your outlook and give you a lift.

The Arena

Powerful people are often unfaithful commentators. The story they tell is bound together by the desire to retain their pedestal. Who would give up a VIP box seat to sit in the bleachers? No one wants to do that and so power begets power – sometimes intentional, sometimes not.

So, us truth-seekers, we look to the powerless, the oppressed, the ones who have nothing to lose and everything to gain, the ones sitting in the bleachers, the ones whose chanting chorus in the arena is drowned out by the carefully engineered and expensive sound system piped into the VIP box.

But the vision of the oppressed is skewed too. It’s tethered to a need to vindicate each other, which usually means vilifying the other, storming the VIP box. This is often a justified action and one that should be televised; the volume of the mic needs to be lowered so the chorus can be heard. However, more voices in the arena don’t make for easy harmony, and coming into power is not, in itself, a qualification to lead.

As the voices conflict with each other and the words become unintelligible, some of us long for the simpler days of the singular voice, some of us love the din, and some of us wish to leave. But what we all have in common is that we’re fearful of what may happen next. We can feel the roar crescendoing, the walls wavering, hands pushing on our backs and necks, as we look around for an exit while clambering to hold our space and move closer.

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7 March 2019