The “Discernment Show”

Backstage, in the Green Room,

ten minutes before the interview is about to begin:

Two guests, Mr. Ego-Head and Ms. IAmThatIAm, are sitting in chairs as the secretary to the host of the show preps them before going onstage. “So,” Ms. Hathaway, began, “because this is a live show, we’ve decided to set a timer for your replies–just to be fair about the interview. You’ll both be given three minutes in which to make your statement, and then the other guest will be given an opportunity to make a statement and/or a rebuttal. That sound, okay?”

Mr. Ego-Head said, “Certainly, Ms. Hathaway. Thanks so much for having me. By the way, that’s a lovely dress you’re wearing.”

“Certainly,” said Ms. IAmThatIAm with a smile.

“Great,” said Ms. Hathaway. “Let’s get you into your chairs onstage and we’ll roll in about five minutes.”

***

And…rolling:

“Welcome, folks, I’m your host Donald Discerning; and this is the “The Discernment Show;” a show in which we get to the bottom of topics that range from ants in your pants to quantum physics to the use of the media to control the masses. Our guests today–who have widely differing approaches to life–are Mr. Ego-Head and Ms. IAmThatIAm (cue applause). Donald nodded to both of the guests and then said, “Welcome to both of you.”

“Thanks for having me,” said Mr. Ego-Head.

Ms. IAmThatIAm nodded, smiling.

“So,” continued Mr. Discerning, “we tossed a coin backstage (honestly, this has nothing to do with a guy named Art Russell guy who pretends to write these articles) and the toss went to Mr. Ego-Head. We’ll begin with you.”

A smile the size of Saskatchewan (hint: Canada) spread across Mr. Ego-Head’s face.

“If you will, please tell our viewing audience a little about your approach to life.”

“Well, Donald, thank you for asking. “Why, it was just the other day that a good friend of mine–a well-known professor at Yale–was asking me for advice about that very topic. I said to him, Barney, I’ll tell you the same points that I shared with the president. I said blah, blah, blah, blah, yada yada yada, blah, blah, blah, blah–and then I said yada blah blah, yada blah blah, yada blah, yada blah, yada yada, blah blah. Well of course, I laughed; and my friend just howled–he has such an infectious laugh! I tell you, I slapped my knee more than once! But it was important that he realized this:

***

3 Minutes

(Donald waves, in a polite attempt to get Mr. Ego-Head’s attention)

***

yada blah haha, yada blah haha. Do-re-mi-fa-so-la-ti do, MEEEEE-so-so, MEEEEE-so-so. La, la, la, la, laa laa laa. La, la, la, la, laa laa laa. This-life-is-all-about-ME and ME and ME and Me and MEEEEE. This-life-is-all-about-ME and ME and ME and Me and MEEEEE. Yada yada, bling, so-ho. Yada yada, bling, so-ho. He saw my point–he truly did. He said to me, you are so wise–perhaps the wisest man I’ve ever met. How fortunate I am to have a friend like you

***

13 Minutes

(Donald is standing, waving, stomping his feet; signaling for help from crew members back stage)

***

….and so I said to Sylvester, Stallone, that is, I said, ‘Sly, why don’t you do a film about boxing; you could call it Rocky.’ He wasn’t too sure, but thank goodness he listened to me. Rata tat, haha, rata tat, haha. I was a gifted child. Chug-a-chug, chug-a-chug, me me meeee. Chug-a-chug, me me meeee. Got straight A’s–in everything! Yada bling, yada bling, so so so. Steve–you know–Jobs, was once asking me for advice; and I said, ‘Why don’t you go with something fruity–maybe an apple, with a different look to it.’

***

47 minutes…and counting

(Backstage

(Crew Member One: “Can you get a bead on him?” Crew Member Two: “No, he keeps moving too much.”)

***

Finally

Donald Discerning fanned his hands at Ms. IAmThatIAm to signal there was nothing more he could do. Through it all, Ms. IAmThatIAm had remained peaceful and calmly detached. She appeared as though a serene bird that was perched high in a tree. Below her, a different bird was busily building its nest and tasting of fruit that was either bitter or sweet. Ms. IAmThatIAm was not bothered by such nonsense; for she realized that so much of what people worry about really doesn’t matter. Mr. Ego-Head was still talking when Donald Discerning signaled to Ms. IAmThatIAm that they might as well leave. They stood and quietly walked off stage. Stage hands soon appeared and began to sweep the floor. When they were finished, the stage manager turned off the overhead lights. As far as we know, Mr. Ego-Head is still there.

***.

Special Note: What’s the point of this little drama above? My intention is to illustrate that we have a choice–one largely unrecognized by the masses–about what type of Being/guest we invite to be dominant in our life. We can let Ego-Head dominate, especially if we desire to listen to negative and meaningless chatter all day; or we can discover that deeper dimension within ourselves and live with the peace of I Am That I Am. (P.S. The statement “get a bead on him” at the forty-seven minute mark referred to a water gun…just in case you were wondering.)

Dare to dream (and care for one another).

With heartfelt regards,

Art

Copyright © – 2021 – R. Arthur Russell

P.S. Please share this article if you enjoyed it. If you’d like to view my latest book (This Taste of Flesh and Bones–released September 8, 2020), press here. May it help you in your spiritual journey. 🙏🙏

Thank You” & “Note to Publishers

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