A Series of Random Thoughts, Part 2: Negativity & Consequences

Today is your lucky day. After typing out a super-long, confusing, much more jumbled than normal post, I finally scrapped the entire thing and decided to start over. So here we are. I hope that this one will be a more focused and less rambling discussion of something I have a strong opinion on. This something being the idea that we – by way of negative, or bad, behavior – create our own problems. Be it karma, a spiritual backlash, punishment from a higher power – whatever your beliefs in what I’m going to try and explain my view on, I believe it is what causes us the most trouble in life.

I believe that our negative actions and habits lead – subconsciously or otherwise – to the troubles we have in our every day lives. Karma. That old what goes ’round, comes ’round method of life. Good vibes, bad vibes, good run of bad luck method of mayhem. If we behave badly, engage in negative aspects of life, then it has been my observation and experience that negative outcomes follow soon after. Describing what I’m talking about is where I have the most trouble. Let me try and work out as clear an example as I can. Hang with me for a few moments and we’ll see if I can do it. This may get messy. If it does, you’ll never know it because I’ll just trash this one, too and try to start over.

Let me use a semi-made-up person that I will call Bob as an example.

Bob is a successful college professor. He teaches several classes, has a good job, makes good money. Bob is also married and has two wonderful children and quite a successful side business that is also his hobby. He has managed to find a way to turn that hobby into something other people are willing to pay for. He has it all! But … Bob is actually always running into bad luck. Nothing seems to go right. He has the money, the family support, the career backdrop, but Bob just can’t seem to win. It is always something. Car troubles, student troubles, family arguments, etc.

Bob has it all – money, family, job. He is every definition of the word winning. (I swear, that is the only time I will resort to using that god-awful and much overused term.) Always under stress from things turning bad, Bob usually escapes into the wonderful world of pornography. He’s always been a fan of the porn industry. Bob attends adult conventions, follows the “stars” on Twitter and Facebook, sends them private messages, watches their bodies of (ahem) work. He really supports the adult film industry.

In this example, I believe the here that Bob invests his valuable time in the world of pornography, he is sabotaging his personal life by setting himself up for failure in other areas. Pornography is – in my opinion – a negative point in our lives. Some may view it as a healthy outlet, some may view it as a protected form of entertainment, but I view it as destructive as going out an trashing someone’s car or robbing another person. Bob’s gut feeling knows this and he subconsciously makes mistakes due to the conflicting emotions inside him. Now because of his involvement with a “seedier” side of life, his personal life is affected. He spends more money than he should and is overdrawn. He talks down to his wife and his marriage is on rocky ground. He is busy browsing porn sites and watching videos so he doesn’t have time for his kids. His job is affected, his time is consumed, yet he doesn’t know what the problem is.

Personally, I’ve seen the same thing happen to friends, to myself and to co-workers. I’m not just basing this on a wild far-flung theory I dreamed up. I have come to believe that actions that bare negativity – be it pornography, deplorable treatment of others, gossiping incessantly and so-forth – lead to a reversal of karma that comes back and smacks us in our own face.

My own example: back in the day I use to be similar to Bob, minus the money and family part. I, too, was in on a seedier side of the internet with its seemingly unlimited access to explicit adult content. All during this time of my life, everything that could go wrong did. I had the worst luck of anyone you’d ever seen. Once I began to grow out of that phase, adjust my life accordingly and actually change my way of living for the better, things improved. The same goes for those around me that I’ve witnessed with the same experiences. Not necessarily with something as adult oriented as porn, mind you, but I hope you get my example.

I’m not saying this is a religious experience – stepping away from the “bad” to experience the “good.” But I do believe that living a calmer, cleaner lifestyle directly affects the attitude and overall experience we face each day. Behave positively and you’ll be rewarded with positive results. Simple stuff. Deal with bad things and bad things will return to you 10-fold. Folks can choose their own method of dealing with this, through the comfort of religion and prayer or well wishes and good vibes as the kids call it these days. Either way, I feel that we have the control to change things for the better based on the simplest of our actions. Something that may not seem harmful – googling the latest leaked photos of a celebrity flashing their bits – may subconsciously set us up for sabotage at a later point. I think it is the deeply buried, internal moral compass we are all designed with. Some people have turned this compass off and they are some of our worst offenders. Others have forgotten how to read it and some only bother to glance at it when they’ve hit rock bottom in the hopes of getting back on the right track before veering off again.

As a society, I have little faith in the human race. We are violent, self destructive and more concerned with gossiping than getting anything constructive done. As a result, we live in a world filled with negativity and that crap builds up thicker then the carbon emissions our government worries about. There is a strong moral decay in the world and it all starts with the way we treat ourselves and the lives we live and expands from there. We do the drugs – even the over the counter variety that we view as harmless. We eat the fast food and get fat. We delve into the seedier sides of pornography and claim that it’s art and protected under free speech and expression. We defend one religion and call for tolerance while ripping another apart and condemning those that worship it. We fight wars overseas for the same reason we fight with our coworkers at work – because we can’t keep out noses out of other peoples business.

We create our own strife – at home as well as globally and then blame everyone but ourselves for the results. I suppose I should have used something other than pornography as my main example in this rant, but it is the one I feel other internet users can associate with as it is so wide spread online. If we just live a clean lifestyle – free of the venom that advertisers, co-workers, so-called friends and the other negative influences in our lives – I believe a person can have a near perfect experience. Of course, it takes two to tango, they say, so that will also depend on those you choose to associate with. Thinning the herd on friends and limiting contact with negative co-workers that in truth are holding you back can be more difficult, but I think the end result will be worth any hurt feelings or burnt bridges you must endure.

Negative actions equal negative reactions. We have a moral compass inside – are born with it – it’s that gut feeling that tells you something is wrong. Unfortunately we’ve learned to turn it off or have lost track of it all together. Society is crumbling around us and we’re slaves to abhorrent behavior, yet we wonder why bad things happen to us. Karma may be a bitch, but we are her master and control when she comes around.


2 thoughts on “A Series of Random Thoughts, Part 2: Negativity & Consequences

  1. Okay, so I’ll post my comment here, something of a counterpoint to your discussion..

    After reading your “draft”, and the actual posted article, I would tend to agree with most of what you said. However, I believe you’re pointing the “finger” too much at pornography, when that isn’t the real issue here. In your “Bob” example, you talk about how he has everything going for him, and then slips into pornography. The problem here is, he has an addiction. Addictions are the problems here. Be it pornography, alcohol, gambling, etc, I don’t think pornography is the root of “Bob’s” problems anymore than a casino or Anheuser- Busch would be. When people have addictions, they usually become reclusive, spend large amounts of money, and withdrawn from family and friends.

    While pornography can be seen as “seedier” and dark to some, I am probably one of the people that also sees it as a form of expression and art. Although, I’ll be the first to admit that some of the crap that is out there is also exploitation of some, but I digress..

    I think part of pornography’s bad reputation comes from our own teachings and values. That doesn’t just include pornography, but sex and nudity in general. Most of America is pretty conservative when it comes to sex. We don’t want in taught in high schools. We don’t want to see it on our televisions. In fact, any teachings should be taught from parents to children for the most part, if they even talk about it at home. So, how is one suppose to learn about these things? Sex is seen as taboo here in the USA. Whereas other countries talk about it openly, shows nudity and sex on tv, and they don’t have nearly as much sex-related crimes. How a country can be so closed minded about sex, and openly embrace the visceral violence shown on TV and in movies is beyond me..

    Back to my original point though, most of the problems coming from pornography and other avenues are addiction problems rather than the actual outlets themselves.

    In your original post, you mention how your faith has given you a positive outlook on life, and that’s great. I don’t think it’s the be all/end all to leading a positive life. I think part of it has to start at home and with friends. As long as you keep a positive outlook in your most private times with those around you, it can only build from there. And if there is someone in your life that isn’t positive, or doesn’t make you feel good, then maybe it’s time to evaluate if they really belong in your life (If possible.. sometimes we’re stuck with family )

    I think the Golden Rule often applies in life as well… if you go through the day with a smile on your face, it’s bound to be contagious. I also consider donating to charities. I know that may be hard for some, but to know that my little sum of money is going to a good cause puts me in a good mood, that I would have otherwise blown on something I probably didn’t need anyways. It’s sort of like the movie Pay it Forward, you do enough good deeds, and eventually it comes back to you.

    But sometimes, that still may not be enough for some. If you or someone you know has an addiction that needs help, get it for them.. even if they resist, do an intervention and get them the help they need. There are always support groups for just about anything you can think of. Sometimes just talking out your problems will make you feel better and give you a better outlook on life.

    Anywho, that’s my two cents on the topic.

  2. Bob doesn’t slip into pornography, he is already partaking in it, which is why he is consistently also running into bad luck. I point porn out as one factor for my example. In actuality, I’m pointing fingers at all of our negative actions in life. From eating that large fry at McDonald’s and wondering why you never lose weight to addictions to porn, alcohol, drugs, etc. We create our own reality and then wonder why it never pans out like we want when we are setting ourselves up for failure in the very beginning.

    We are always so anxious to blame outside factors that we don’t stop to look at what we are actually doing to ourselves. Ex: A man has a dead end job. He hates being in a lead position with his company. Wants out. He looks around and sees all these other jobs available but claims he can’t find anything and is stuck in his current position. No, he’s not stuck, he chooses to stay there because he doesn’t want something that he considers “below” himself. He doesn’t want to start over and work his way up, so he would rather be miserable instead. This misery over his job and unwillingness to take a plunge and start over then begins to tumble down through the rest of his life. He becomes grumpy, his temper starts flaring up at home with his family, he lashes out at coworkers, is constantly complaining to friends to the point they don’t want to be around him. His finances start hurting because he’s trying to cheer himself up by either a) substance abuse, b) buying expensive items to compensate for his misery, or c) throwing it away on some other attention diverting activity. This in turn starts affecting his cash flow …. etc, etc, etc.

    I’m not blaming everything on porn addiction or any type of addiction. I use it as an example because it’s one I think most people will understand. In reality, it can be anything from a job decision to how we treat the next door neighbor. Negative actions on our own behalf, and a failure to respond with a more positive outlook lead to the trouble we face in our own lives. We create our own environment – be it good or bad – and then pretend we don’t know why we experience such bad luck.

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