Parallel Realities

On Sunday morning, I received a message on Facebook. Normally, I ignore the messages unless they are personal, but this one was flagged and so I looked at it. It talked about martial law soon to be in effect, people getting arrested and President Trump being sworn in again on January 20th.

I was kind of in shock at the thinking and showed the message to my husband. I then called a girlfriend and told her about it. I asked, “Am I living in an alternate reality?” In my world, the message seemed so out of touch with reality than I couldn’t comprehend how someone could believe that it would be happening. On Monday, I heard from a few people that thought that the President might actually be sworn in on the 20th. I then watched the riots on January 6th and heard what some people thought was going to happen when they went to D.C.

It made me realize that we are living in a country where people are living in parallel realities. There is such a divide, such a disparity in the news services that no one really knows the truth. One group listens to one news service and believes what it says. Another group listens to another news channel and believes what it says; hook, line and sinker. What bothers me is that there seem to be so few people in the center, so few people that are willing to look at both sides of the problems and issues. Is there any way we can bridge the divide between both realities?

It seems to me that we must stop getting our news from just one source. We must listen to disparate points of view in order to find the truth. We must stop listening to politicians and believing everything they are telling us is the truth. They should be the last people we rely on for the truth as they have a political stake in most outcomes. We must also stop demonizing people who are on the other side of the political spectrum. No one is all good or all bad. No one person or side has THE ANSWER to all of the problems that we face as a nation. Somewhere in the middle lies the truth and the answer for most of our problems.

Do you see what I see concerning parallel realities? If so, what do you think can be done to help bring our country back together and bridge the divide?

Image by Octavia A. Tudose. Courtesy of Pixabay.

34 thoughts on “Parallel Realities

  1. Hi Valerie, I see what you see and there are many others who also see what you see, but unfortunately there are a significant number that are only interested in what they want to see and hear. Multiple news sources is a must and researching versus taking something verbatim is another. It’s not rocket science and the means to come to a relatively informed opinion is still available, but it takes time and far too many look for “truth” that validates what they have already come to believe, irrespective of conflicting facts about that truth. We are literally surrounded with mountains of disinformation and misinformation and unaccredited generalities are common place. Fact checking with multiple fact checkers is another resource that is available, bearing in mind that even fact checkers can make mistakes but over time you do establish a level of reliability and credibility from some of the available multiple fact checkers. But again, that also, takes time. The days are gone when you could turn on the TV and accept what you see and hear as unvarnished truth (if in fact there ever was such a thing when it comes to secular news). Every news agency spins, every government spins, the only variance is the degree to which it historically spins and in which direction (Liberal or Conservative, as examples, and how extreme). Some of the misinformation or disinformation is disseminated by people who make a good living doing just that. Some is disseminated by foreign interests that wish to destabilize our country by promoting speculation (conspiracies) which breeds fear, a very common human condition. Once again, it’s not rocket science but the magnitude has dramatically increased over the last few years, to the point where there are no general standards (FBI, Justice Department etc) any more that anyone trusts. And none of these “standards” were every perfect, they are made up of humans who are fallible, but now every misstep or oversight is and can be used as proof of organized deception, according to the chosen agenda of your choice. And please note that I am deliberately not identifying any “specifics” like voter fraud or Covid19 (to name but two of the many controversies currently being argued) because to do so, literally opens up multiple levels of complexity and seeming endless amounts of conflicting professional opinions and facts. So what is a Christian person to do? Jesus told us not to worry about tomorrow, He is our Shepherd, we are His sheep, we are in His care. When He told us about the end times He said He did so that we would not worry or fear but to trust that He had already conquered the world. There will always be waves around us, just like Peter experienced when Peter and the disciples saw Jesus coming towards them on the water. When Peter focused on Jesus, he also walked on the water but when he focused on the waves, the water started to engulf him. Jesus immediately saved him and gently scolded him for having “little faith”. There is nothing wrong is being relatively informed about what is happening around you but do not allow yourself to become overwhelmed, focus on Jesus, trust in Him. Whether we live or whether we die, we live or die unto the Lord, that is the truth. God is thoroughly able to get His guidance across to you, should He want you to get out of the way. I don’t know if this will help you at all but I pray that it does. Love in Christ – Bruce

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Daniel Patrick Moynihan said that people are entitled to their own opinions yet not their own facts. We live in the age of “alternative facts,” fueled by a number of factors, not the least of which is social media. Walter Cronkite used to say, “That’s the way it is.” He did not live in a world of “alternative facts.”

    I have a high regard for objective reality. We mere mortals can, if we try, perceive accurately what much of that objective reality is. I respect honest debates about the meaning of objective reality, but not factually-challenged arguments about the definition of objective reality.

    We need to get our egos out of the way. Psychologists tell us that people are likely to double down on false beliefs in the face of evidence to the contrary if admitting error would damage their self images. I, trained in historical analysis, know that one way to overturn long-held beliefs is to conduct research in archives. I know about changing my mind based on evidence. Why would being wrong make me feel better when I value objective reality?

    Of course, arguing facts with a person who does not care about them is like bringing a knife to a gun fight.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Valerie,

    When reality doesn’t fit the vision, especially on social media, go with the vision.

    What makes reasoned civil discourse increasingly so difficult is as the divide widened and differences became more entrenched and more pronounced, we for the most part chose sides. Each side through a long process of selective reading and confirmation bias has evolved into it’s own separate and incommensurate narrative that shapes our conversations, both verbal and electronic.

    Our narratives are polarized to the extent that we have lost a common language and shared tools to measure that of which we speak. Not only ideas, but words themselves mean very different things to those on opposite sides of the divide.

    Thought provoking post.

    Thanks.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Dear Valerie,

    I am praying for God’s will to be done! I pray that every day. I also pray that the TRUTH will prevail and corruptuon will be exposed. This is something every Christian should be praying.

    As a Canadian, I see both sides. I watch in disbelief how MSM twists the truth. How Big Tech monopolizes and censors whoever they disagree with.

    There are serious problems with the hypocracy of social media and MSM, and they have interfered with the election.

    Let’s watch and pray!
    ❤️carmen

    Liked by 1 person

  5. For thirty years, I’ve been teaching courses that involve analyzing validity of evidence. If the evidence you’re being presented with is based on a logical fallacy, it’s not valid, and you need to look elsewhere. Sigh . . .

    Like

  6. “It seems to me that we must stop getting our news from just one source. We must listen to disparate points of view in order to find the truth.”

    — This is MUSIC to my ears! Questioning is healthy. Searching for answers is healthy. But only listening to one side doesn’t really help us find the whole truth. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. The only truth we can know for sure and reliable is the love of God for us, shown in Jesus Christ our Lord. Seek Him and all the rest shall be given in His time and in His way. Thank you Valerie. What did He also say about not leaning on our own understanding. Sure He gave us intelligence to use, but ultimately we trust His ways.

    Liked by 1 person

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