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comment by user-inactivated
user-inactivated  ·  895 days ago  ·  link  ·    ·  parent  ·  post: We Have to Build the Future Out of the Past

I feel like this is a sideways continuation of this conversation. If I was in better shape, I'd share some deeper thoughts, but it's been a really long week and I'm absolutely lacking in anything that comes close to resembling clarity or eloquence. If I could just share on this though, and thank you for your patience and humoring me in advance . . .

    The argument is that somehow being friends with weev makes us better people, and I'm sorry but fuck off with that shit.

In the most basic of ideas, and I will admit I'm saying this not reading the original article, sometimes helping others is the best way to help ourselves, and I'm not talking about the emotional high people get from sharing warm fuzzies.

When we interact with people who are difficult to interact with and do so with a goal of positive growth in mind, for them as well as for us, we may not always see positive growth from them, but we almost inevitably see positive growth in ourselves. We learn to become more patient, to become more compassionate, to become more sympathetic and empathetic. These are all skills and virtues that, as they develop, become more and more useful to us in every relationship we're in, from families, friends, and coworkers, to random people in traffic and in public. If each of us were able to grow to just be a little more patient for example, situations like difficult in-laws or heavy traffic would frustrate us just a little less. Then we see the power patience has on us and the situations we're in and seek to develop that attribute even further. It's a positive feedback cycle that builds on itself and the benefits from it, both for us as individuals as well as society, has the potential to grow.

Further more, when we interact with people with the goal of conflict resolution in mind, we benefit even further. The skills and strategies that we learn can be shared with others and help them to overcome their own conflicts. Success is never guaranteed, but growth is. We have to take care though, because negative growth is always a possibility. It's okay to avoid situations because we think they're beyond our ability to handle. That said though, we also need to keep in mind that thoughts and behavior that are unproductive will do nothing to help the people who are trying to help in those situations.

A lot of the time, people seem to think that this kind of growth, this kind of personal development, is something we instill in children and adolescents and when they grow up, we call it a day. We teach our children how to share, how to be patient, not to beg for candy at the check out line at the store, on and on and on. The thing is though, when we grow up, we don't all of the sudden become incapable of furthering development of these skills. The only thing that changes is now the responsibility for the growth of these attributes changes from our parents to ourselves.

In the previous thread, you linked to an article that insinuated adults were incapable of change. The more I think about it, the more I think that's not the case. I think there's nuance there, that we are capable of change, but that more often than not we either consciously or unconsciously choose not to change. While I think Hubskiers tend to be on the bit more special side, I don't think there's a single one of us on here that would look to ourselves thirty or forty years from now and say "Yeah. I'll probably give up. No need to keep on growing." Anecdotally, I have a family member who is in their 70s and is working through anger management. The difference between them now and when they were in their 50s is absolutely stark. Change is possible, but we have to choose it, and sometimes in order to choose it, we need to be shown the value in it.

    When I sit with monsters they show me the monster in me. Sure.

Let me ask this as a rhetorical question, to you as well as anyone reading this, no need for answers. If we believe this to be true, and I think we all do to some extent, why would we not think the opposite to be true? By sitting with us, wouldn't those men see the good in us, and therefore, the potential for good in themselves?