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How refreshing to see this diary on the rec list.

Like many of us, I have a propensity to "go Meta" in life when I feel overwhelmed or frustrated. Whenever I do those personality tests, the result is always "visionary philosopher." Beyond my first reactionary thought of "great, I'm useless and have no career prospects", is the realization that I tent to float up to eagle eye, big picture analysis of everything. It's important for me to do things which ground me in the dirty details of daily doings. Because of my nature, I'm both compelled to participate in venues such as DailyKos, where I can be with other folk who like to talk big picture and in need of keeping it real, as it were. So, I try to stick to certain big topics and I practice avoiding the pie wars. What that means is that I often skip almost everything in the rec lists. Once in while, though, something catches my eye and I warily venture in and I'm actually inspired. I found MinistryOfTruth's diary inspirational and I'd like to suggest a community activity:

Perhaps we could try, for a while, as a community, to redirect our Meta energy. Whenever we're tempted to go Meta, force ourselves to go Micro. That is, instead of writing about some flaw you see in the dKos community, write about something kind, generous, helpful you did for someone that day.

Some suggested guidelines for what kinds of acts qualify:

1) the less you know the receiver of your beneficence the more qualified the act
2) the harder it was for you do said act - whether it was financially challenging, meant giving up something for yourself, required that you get past some fear or anxiety, or was just uncomfortable - the more qualified the act.
3) the more the diary is about the recipient and not about yourself, the more qualified the diary. (of course, we must write a bit about our experience - how else will the readers know how challenging it was. But, the majority of the diary would best be received if you reported about this person's circumstances and could help the readers get a glimpse into the heart of another human being.

Maybe you can suggest more guidelines. I wouldn't want them to be used to make people hesitate to write, but rather to guide us as to how to write in such a way that we create rich portrait of moments and people which can be here, on the site, as an aid to helping us all remember why we're working for the political ends we seek: to engender a society where reaching out in compassion is the norm and seeing that the way we treat the least of us defines who we are as a people.

Just imagine a rec list where every day there are at least one or two diaries about random acts of kindness. People can share the energy of compassionate action, while shining a light on the hardships created for people via systemic corruption of democracy and the heartlessness of capitalism. All of our other discussions could underlined by these ever-present stories.

Wouldn't it be a beautiful thing?

I'll write my first offering very soon, about a young mother I've taken into my home, even though I did not know her and I was anxious at first.

Originally posted to UnaSpenser on Tue Aug 16, 2011 at 08:55 PM PDT.

Also republished by Street Prophets .

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