Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Occam's Razor

A commenter on the facebook version of the "label, schmabel" post pointed out that the list seemed a bit complex, and said that for her the bottom line was whether the belief system was oppressive or empowering for women and lesbians.

That is part of the bottom line, for me. For instance, I don't see how women can be empowered without liberating men from the oppressive structures of patriarchy too. Another friend lives by Socrates' question, "How shall we live a good life?" which also seems like a good test. The spiritual is political, as many people have pointed out.

I guess my "bottom line" or Occam's Razor would be "Does it contribute to the well-being of all beings?" (including women, men, LGBT, queer, animal, tree, discarnate entity, Gaia, etc.) But one still needs to unpack exactly what that means and how it works out in practice, hence my previous complex list. But I can see how the list would seem weird if you didn't know what my bottom line was.

2 comments:

Jerome M said...

As I reflect on this post as well as "label, schmable," (which I enjoyed thoroughly!), I realize the bottom line for me is "is it oppressive or empowering, period?" In reading the clarification you offer above, I'm reminded how important it is to be mindful of all beings when considering this(and not just the individual), as you've done. And your list was not "a bit complex" in the slightest. It's beautiful, thoughtful, and inspiring.

Yvonne said...

Thank you Jerome - I'm glad this was helpful for you. Yes, we must be mindful of all beings when asking if something is oppressive or empowering.