Turban Askew: April 2007

By Steve Bhaerman

Questionable advice with a ring of truth, from Swami Beyondananda, regarding affairs personal and political.
by Steve Bhaerman
Dear Swami:

It seems to me that the problem with the world is too many do-gooders trying to fix it. The world is what it is, always has been and always will be. We seem to be going around in the same circles, and those trying to "make the world a better" place seem to be making it worse. It sure seems to prove that old saying, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions." Personally, I think it's a waste of time to try to change the world. Do you agree?

Meade E. Yoker,

State College, Pennsylvania

Dear Meade:

Well, I agree about one thing. It is indeed a waste of time to try to change the world, when there is a more efficient approach: Let's toilet train the world, and we'll never have to change it again. As for things never getting better, well, tell that to Gandhi or Martin Luther King or any of America's founding fathers. We humans have indeed evolved; otherwise the casual comment, "We'd love to have you for dinner sometime" would be taken as a threat, not an invitation.

Indeed, the vicious cycles of history are in place because of our belief that it can be no other way. Me, I say when you find yourself caught up in a vicious cycle, stop pedaling. Have you ever noticed that the folks who are most invested in the idea that the road to hell is paved with good intentions – are the folks with bad intentions? No, the do-gooders aren't our problem. The problem is the bad-doers who manipulate and enroll the rest of us to do their bad-doings with them by insisting we're all original sinners.

Yes, we are susceptible. But whether we actually get infected by these sociopathogens is ultimately up to us. So you are partly right. The road to hell is indeed paved with people with good intentions-who have been used as paving stones… by people with bad intentions.

Dear Swami:

I know you're aware of alternative healing modalities, so I figure you're the one to ask. What's your take on psychic surgery? Also, do you ever come to Chico?

Amanda B. Reckondwith,

Chico, California

Dear Amanda:

Coincidentally, I used to live not far from Chico. Actually, I lived halfway between Groucho and Harpo, in a little town called Zeppo. As for psychic surgery, I went to a psychic surgeon not too long ago. I had three psychics removed, and I feel much better.

Dear Swami:

As the mother of two preteens rapidly growing up too quickly, I find myself losing patience. First of all, I see my son lazing around the house, sloppy and unmotivated and when I hear myself yelling at him, I hear my own mother. That's pretty scary. Then, there's my daughter who is entirely too sexy for her age. Her middle school is considering a sex education program, and I wonder if something like that could possibly prevent premature sexual activity. I'm feeling pretty stressed. Any advice, Swami?

Lindsey Doyle,

Ahgowan, New Jersey

Dear Lindsey:

I can imagine how disturbing it can be hearing your mother's voice come out of your own mouth. You may not be able to do much about the voice, but you can change the words that tumble out. No matter how frustrated you are with your son, you have to be very careful not to reinforce negative attitudes, because this can be very damaging. So, if you must yell at your son to rouse him out of bed, be sure you give only positive messages, like this: "Get up, you useful good-for-something!" As for sex education in schools as a way to prevent kids from becoming sexually active too early, I'm all for it. Think of it this way. If schools teach sex like they teach everything else, the kids will get bored and lose interest.

Visit the Swami online at www.wakeuplaughing.com.

This article was originally published on March 31, 2007.