Joy and love and all that hippie dippy stuff

Yup, I’m becoming a hippie as I get older, or at least getting crunchier (like granola). I will never be a pacifist. But, I am vegetarian and I am coming to believe that joy and love are two of the most important things there are. While not everyone can do what they love and make a living at it, we can figure out what we love to do and make a hobby out of it. We can find a job that aligns with our values in some way (sometimes there is some mental gymnastics going on to get that alignment though). We can make sure that whatever we end up doing, we do it ethically and proudly.

We need to find the joy in our lives. Be it through our work, hobbies, the people in our lives, our loved ones, or just having lunch in the park every day, we need to find some area of our lives that bring us joy. Through joy comes strength. If we can see the positive in our lives, it will help things not look so bleak during the rough times. We can find solace in our families or in that walk through the park. With all that’s going on in my life and in my family, I feel strong enough to handle it thanks to the joy I find in things. It’s harder when I lose sight of that.

Love. what can I say about the importance of love that hasn’t been said a million times before? The Bible says to love thy neighbor as thyself. While I’m not a religious person, I see the sense in this. It is only be loving one another and respecting one another that we are able to help one another. It is only through caring for others that you can see what their problems are and try to help them, instead of imposing your solutions to the problems you think they have. Love is a soft place to land when you are falling, and can be the foundation upon which you build incredible things. I’m waxing a bit poetic, but it’s important to love someone or something. Even if it’s only your cat. You become hard and unbending without it. Brittle.

The hippies were famous for environmentalism and good music. I’m all for those things! Non-violence is good too, although I do think there may be a time for violence when nothing else has worked (WWII was a just war in my opinion). So many of the things that hippies stood for are coming back around and being proven important. I can’t ignore that. Yes, they became a bit much toward the end, went a little “out there” sometimes (psychedelia, really? Bell bottoms, seriously?), and did way too many drugs, but they started out with a sound base. Environmentalism and good music are never wrong.

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