You Don’t Want Me to Agree

How on earth did so many (all?) of our conversations become about whether or not we agree or disagree? Why do we so often treat conversations with friends, family, colleagues, like high-pressure sales? Why the relentless evangelism for the diet you advocate, the exercise program, the gadget, the political platform?

What do you think will happen when we agree? What exactly will that accomplish?

I know what you think it will accomplish – peace, harmony, solidarity, right?

I have had more trouble, more discontent, more disharmony, from relationships with people who “agree”, than any other kind. Right now you can observe a digital storm amongst groups that want “agreement”, all sides of which have experienced or deeply empathize with the pain of this insane modern world, in part or whole.

I believe that most (all?) attempts at agreement drive towards military action – to create the coherence and one mindedness necessary for effective group combat, verbal, physical, emotional, spiritual or otherwise. All “policy”, all “platforms”, really come down to choosing a war footing, creating a military confederacy. Perhaps you have your reasons; maybe you nod your head emphatically in response.

If so, then I have to ask – what makes you any different from any of the other Americans fully armed and ready for war? How does your sales pitch differ, except in content and branding? How can you tell your story, and listen to the stories of others, when you occupy yourself with worrying about reaching agreement, making the sale? How can you have a real conversation (the rhythm of changing others, and allowing them to change you) with an agenda?

The living web of life doesn’t agree on anything. Nor do they disagree. Beings eat each other, help each other, interact and intermingle their bodies, minds and spirits with each other. They tell their stories constantly, and listen to other stories told to them.

You don’t want me to agree with you. You want me to hear your story. Only then will the restlessness leave your heart.

Thanks for listening to mine.

Written by Willem