Saying It

Sometimes, you know what needs to be said.

And you know that it needs to be said even if no one is quite ready to hear it.

Unless you say it, it won’t be out there in the world.  It won’t escape your brain and start reverberating in the minds of others.

No good message jumps full blown from one mind to another.

Any message that seems to do that doesn’t really jump, it just triggers another mind to recall previous knowledge which affirms the current message.

“Yes,” we think, “that makes perfect sense when I use it to organize what I already know and believe.  That message speaks a truth that is already inside me, just bringing it to the top again in a clear and effective way.”

Many messages, though, don’t act to coalesce what we already know.  Instead, they are seeds, fragments, bits that we take in as fodder.  They are interesting enough to store, but we don’t yet have a place to use them in constructing thoughts.

These messages live inside of us, just waiting for moments when they can connect with other messages to make a notion, an idea, a belief, a message that we know that we need to share with the world.

The creative always have a trunkful of interesting and disconnected notions rolling around in their heads.   We know that they are there when we need to craft a new message, connecting them into ideas which we can share and get feedback about.

People who purge the messes in their mind rarely make lovely serendipitous insights.  They rarely create new ideas that pull together knowledge in a powerful way.

I am a magpie.  I have long said that my brain is like dropped chewing gum in August; things just kind of stick to it.  My skill is in taking those bits I accumulate and putting them together in ways that value connections.   When I do this well, others take those connections and say “Yes, I see the relationships.”

When I talk to people, I use lots of these bits to share my vision in an attempt to illuminate how things tie together.   Often, I will use bits of a persons own story, offering a different angle on it that shows it in a new light.   I walk around the back, showing the known from an unexpected viewpoint.

This is how I try to create messages that resonate, rooting them in what someone already knows.

Often, though, I know that’s impossible.   When I am not in conversation but rather doing a monologue, as happens when I write, I can’t monitor my audience, finding bits that we share and building on them.

Instead, I just have to say what I see in the best way that I can and hope that somehow, somewhere, some bit of what I offer is potent and sticky enough to get stored in someone’s mind.

I would love to just have my message appear full blown in their vision, but I know that rarely happens.  Instead, seeds are offered, bits of thoughts that may come together later when needed, growing as ideas in another mind, fed by observations and reinforced with similar notions.

“If you have something that you honestly need to say, there is someone, somewhere who honestly needs to hear it.”    That’s my motivation for saying out loud bits that I know that there is no ready audience for.   The challenge is speaking the classic truths in modern language; they still resonate if they can get through the marketing noise.

I know that lots of people love to please an audience by saying things the crowd is already primed to hear and believe.   By preaching to the choir, affirming what the people around you already know and believe, you can get them to respond easily and positively.

Saying what you feel needs to be said, even if nobody is really thinking that at the moment has a different kind of reward.   It is like planting trees under which you know you will never sit, a kind of devotion to a better and smarter future.  It is teaching not for today, but for tomorrow, knowing that everyone grows and heals in their own time and in their own way.

There are good reasons to say what we know needs to be said, even if we know that others aren’t quite ready to hear it.

We may never be there when they are ready to hear it.   If we don’t say it now, we won’t get another chance.

But more than that, just saying something and letting people hear it helps create the possibility that they will be able to accept our gift and engage what we value sometime in the future.   We add another stone to their pile, another bit to their understanding.

Eventually, what we share may add to the weight that tips the balance for them, ready for the moment when their heart and their mind opens and they need new understandings to contextualize new possibilities beyond where they were stuck.

It is even possible that what we offered in the past will form building blocks for what they create in the future.  We all stand on the shoulders of giants, the bits we have collected from others forming the foundation of what we can become, what we can offer the world.

There are good reasons to share the truths you see now, even if those around you are not currently ready to engage that truth.

Any offering of truth is a hopeful gift to the future.   Sharing what you know people can not yet see takes the will of a teacher investing in the future possibilities of those they are committed to.

Sharing without a direct attempt to control the outcome, without a desire to pander to or manipulate others, is a testament without ego.

And I thank all the teachers of the past who shared so graciously in a way that offered me a chance to use their understandings to facilitate my own growth and healing.


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