People are like Headcheese

Schaller and Weber_Headcheese_Creative Commons

"Headcheese"_Schaller & Waller_Creative Commons

It seems (to me) that people are more like headcheese: when you cut into them to see what's at the core, you can't separate the mind from the heart, the heart from the body, the body from the spirit. When we absorb & process, it's with all of who we are — mind, body, heart, spirit… ALL of who makes us up. Jesus – God with skin on – knew this, embraced this & encouraged our realization of it. There's love in how we are created.

It's why I don't accept easily phrases like "shut down your mind" or "you're over-thinking". Those are only easy assumptions, not based in love, but rather someone else's idea of how the rest of the world needs to function or engage. Having said that, I know I've made baseless assumptions about someone else thinking I know enough information to be teacher.

I could be "over-being", obsessing on something. But not over-thinking or over-feeling specifically. That would mean ignoring that something important going on within my spirit, but still blaming it all on my mind.

Headcheese (to me) is probably one of the most disgusting culinary inventions the world has ever known. Perhaps that's why it's so apt in expressing humanity — even more so that it is a loved disgusting culinary invention. Love it or hate it, you cannot cut into it without encountering all sorts of sticky bits (many of which we would rather not even touch). Try and remove one single part in the jelly and you'll lose the integrity of the entire delicacy.

Yes, it bothers me sometimes when people assume I'm thinking too much or in need of something I'm not. Chances are you get bothered by similar unfounded assumptions when people pick you apart, refusing to hear your voice. There's a distinct lack of trust, isn't there, on my part towards you & you towards me? We don't trust each other that we know ourselves well enough to choose wisely; even worse, we rely on our own gathered wisdom to plunk it on someone else's shoulders.

As someone deeply invested in social justice, sometimes I don't realize how badly I can frustrate others! Not always, but every so often (maybe it happens more than I realize & folks simply don't tell me… yikes!).

In my zeal to help people understand the world's ills from perspectives not normally considered, I sometimes forget that others have voices at the table. Other times I simply shut down, refusing to try and understand other perspectives at all as they seem ludicrous and damaging.

Other times, people think they know me and what lessons I need to learn.

Often these people are well-intentioned but mistaken. And I end up feeling stupid… less… not enough… condescended to… patronized… (you can rattle this list off, too, I suspect).

Humility, however, would teach us that when such teachers cross our paths, we would do well to listen with genuine love and desire to see if something is 'there'. If not, we love all the harder and carry on. 

But I hear you… I can be more than a little spastic when people don't trust you enough to know your path or your walk. It's even more spastic to take someone aside and ask them to stop.

"Hey umm… I know you think I'm [insert action/noun here]. But I'm really not. Here's the truth of it. I'd appreciate it if you'd stop telling me I need to [insert lesson here]". That's bloody scary! I wouldn't say we need to practice this all of the time. We know how to eat the meat and spit out the bones.

Be careful we aren't spitting out the good stuff, though. There might come a time when such lessons are affirmed. But in the present, when people repeatedly get at us for things that are true for us, let's be courageous and live who we are anyway. Our way is Love. So Love anyway. Love them for caring enough to even think they sorta, kinda, maybe know us!

Headcheese.

Easy folks.

It's just a metaphor.

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