We wake up each morning to "the way things are." This is the ideological/emotional template that we daily impose on the world which I blogged about in recent weeks. This template, this "way things are" is a powerful force and we bring it to bear on our whole world---physical world and social world---with each breath we take. We impose it on the world and get by with it because millions of others subscribe to a similar fantasy. And we must have a "way things are" to get by and to live together with some degree of harmony. If we had to start afresh each morning that we awaken, we would not be able to function, individually or collectively. We need this "egoic consciousness" (Eckhart Tolle) to keep this dog-and-pony show afloat. BUT, we need awareness of its presence and its tyranny. We need the "mindfulness" taught by the Buddhists. Or, the "illuminating spirit of God" taught by the Christians. For, otherwise we totally disallow and disregard those who do not fit into this culturally-derived template. I grew up in the ‘60’s and I so vividly remember the tyranny of "the way things are" in a conservative, central Arkansas community. For example, it was a given that girls do not become lawyers or doctors. This was actually noted by the guidance counselor. And, she was not a bad person or stupid. She was merely purveying "the way things are" in her day and time and locale. And I vividly remember the talk of the early part of that decade...and the late fifties...that "blacks should know their place." Racism was just part of the social fabric of that time and place, it was an essential part of the "template" that had become my reality. And there was a rigid moral code, part of which was "nice girls don’t do it. They save themselves for marriage." And I vividly recall the tyranny of the collective shame that was cast upon a couple of young girls who became pregnant. I wander what part of today’s "way things are" will be subject to scrutiny in coming decades?