the pendulum

Oh, how the pendulum swings…

First to one side
Then to the other
Extreme on both ends

One goes higher
The next goes faster
Boasts of higher and faster swell

Oh, how the pendulum swings…

Constantly in motion
Never staying long in the opposite ends
Seemingly most stable in the middle

Yes, oh, how the pendulum swings.

I had a great conversation with a new friend the other day; I loved it… instantly authentic, lots of truth, active listening, deep topics, no offense, with the highly valued bonus of great wit and exceptionally well-timed sarcasm… yes, my kind of conversation.

We discussed the challenge of current political climate — a climate full of falsehoods and “fake-ness,” minimal truth, limited listening, all sorts of mountain-out-of-molehill topics, and ample offense… with unfortunately, no added wit nor sarcasm.

And we talked about the political pendulum.

Some find relief in the recent pattern of 4/8 years of one ideology more promoted and accepted, then 4/8 years of an opposite ideology, with the political pendulum swinging back and forth from the extremes. The idea is that if a person can persevere through the presidency and prominence of one for a limited number of years, the pendulum will soon be back to a place more desired to that individual… granted, again, for only a limited number of years. The pendulum never lasts at the extreme.

On one hand, that gives people peace, as no one person or party can be — will be — in control for all time. On another hand, the idea is great cause for concern, as each time the pendulum seems to swing “higher and faster,” so-to-speak. Each polar opposite end vows to pick up the steam. And because they focus seemingly most on the sins of another as opposed to the sins of self (both which exist), they justify all sorts of less than honorable behavior. The extremes justify:

… falsehood and fake-ness…
… minimal truth…
… limited listening…

They also justify:

… disrespect…
… obstruction…
… and devaluing of relationship.

Add arrogance, too — even subtly or unknowingly — as it’s way too easy to feel we are so wise and omniscient, forgetting the need and benefit to submit both our thinking and emotion to divine wisdom. No, none of us have this all figured out.

The problem with the pendulum is that as the weight swings to the polar opposite side, unethical behaviors are justified. And the behaviors seems to keep getting worse, as we hear popular refrains, such as, “Well, they did this, so we must do this.” The focus seems always on the sins of the other.

Oh, how the pendulum swings…

And yes, that’s concerning.