Small is the gate and narrow is the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

6/3/13

DP Week In Review

With Memorial Day and the long weekend I didn’t get a chance to write a review of the dedicated Prager hours from last week. This week there is no excuse. I actually really enjoy listening to Prager and writing about it on this blog even if it's just for me. So here we go.

There are times that I feel like Prager is talking directly to me and this week’s Ultimate Issues hour was definitely one of those times. Prager brought up an article from the Wall Street Journal titled “Dear Grads, don’t do what you love” (Read it HERE). After reading the article, I feel like the last sentence does a great job of summing up the point. It says, “It might be worthwhile for graduates—and the rest of us—if the popular "do what you love" message were balanced with a more timeless message to find work that, even in some small way, truly matters." Prager mentioned that this could be a Happiness Hour issue and that he may talk about this on a Happiness Hour at some point. I hope he follows up on it. I would love to try and call in if it was based on happiness, because I would love the chance to talk with him on that topic. He explained that it was also an Ultimate Issue topic, because he believes that there is a problem with people trying to seek meaning, even ultimate meaning, from their work. He says almost every job is meaningful in some way or another. Even if you do work that doesn’t bring meaning in itself, the fact that having the job provides and allows you take care of yourself and family makes it meaningful. He sums it up by saying, “Don’t look for work to provide meaning, but look to work to enable meaning.” Prager feels like this is a recent problem within society because people do not have meaningful things in their life anymore such as family, religion, hobbies, etc.

Prager said, “Overwhelming people cannot make a living doing what they love, so what you decide to do is love what you are doing.” He also points that just because you pursue what you love, doesn’t mean you will love it in thirty years. It also might not turn out to be what you thought it was. So you may not love doing it for a profession and would have been better off doing it on the side as a hobby. Also, if you do what you love and can’t find meaning in it, then you may find that it doesn’t make you happy.

I feel like I should save this hour and listen to it periodically when I am feeling down about my job. I still want to hear what Dennis says on the subject of happiness and jobs, but in regards to meaning, I know I need to realize that my job provides for our family and that is meaningful. While Adam makes more money than me, I know that my job allows us to have things we want and not just scrape by barely paying our bills. My job is allowing us to pay off our debt, take vacations, and indulge from time to time. When I get upset about stupid policies at work or feel like I’m not reaching my full potential then I need to think of what I AM doing with my job and not about what I’m not. It’s really all about how you look at things. I’m still not 100% happy in my job and I’m working on changing that, but I am providing and contributing to the betterment of my family and maybe that is really more important.

This hour also made me think of how thankful I am for Adam and all of his hardwork. Adam is an accountant and working hard on getting his CPA. While he enjoys accounting, it isn’t his love. His love is photography. He is a wonderful photographer and it used to be his main source of income. While we both know that he could have pursued his passion and done extremely well, he chose instead to pursue something he liked that would be more stable, allow him to spend more time with his family and better support us. Spending time with his family was more important than pursing his dreams of shooting the Olympics. I know Adam could have been an Olympic photographer, but the fact that he chose me and our family over his own personal dreams makes me love him that much more. The fact that our family takes priority over his ultimate personal happiness makes me feel so secure in our marriage. I am so thankful everyday that Adam has found a second passion in accounting. I know he will succeed in the same way he could have succeeded in photography. I thank God that he knows what is most important in life and knows that accounting will allow him to do the things in life he most wants. He is a great example of the point of this hour and it made me realize once more what a lucky girl I am to have such a wonderful husband.

 
 
On the male/female hour, Prager brought THIS article on the topic of fangirls of the youngest brother of the two Boston bombers. The article starts out, "OK, so Dzhokhar Tsarnaev stands accused of blowing up three people, injuring 282 more and shooting to death an MIT campus police officer. He's also got fans, or more accurately, he's got fangirls, thousands of them." Prager points out how male murderers who become famous from their crimes receive a ton of female fans and asks why. He also makes a good point, that there is no echo of this in male nature. No matter how beautiful a woman is, if she had killed people then there would be no mass legions of men following her. One Tsarnaev follower, an 18 year old waitress, plans to have his last tweet before the bombing tattooed on her arm. It will say “If you have the knowledge and the inspiration, all that’s left is to take action.” How confused is she? Prager wishes she could meet the parents of the 7 year old victim. If I were this girl's mother, I would be ashamed and humiliated by my daughter.

The author of the article says "I’m betting that woman, young and old, are drawn to him not because he is good looking, late adolescent; but because he is an accused killer. He is a classic bad boy to whom woman are chronically attracted. Mostly, because they find it sexy." The article goes on to say that as any evolutionary psychologist can tell you, women, like other female primates, crave dominant "alpha" males who demonstrate the strength to protect them and pass on survival traits to their children. And in a society such as ours where the phrase "head of the household" is anathema and men are forbidden to dominate in socially beneficial ways, women will seek out assertive, self-confident men whose displays of power aren't so socially beneficial. Prager adds that woman want strong men, and feminism and the left have destroyed positive strong men in taking care of a family and a home and so what is left is men who are wimpy in personality, but sensitive.

I have a hard time understanding all of this as a woman. I don't see the draw of a mass murderer and I have never been attracted to the "bad boys". I do agree that many women want a strong, dominate man, but I can't see how that can manifest into falling for a killer. I feel sorry for these poor misguided women. Adam is not the most manly man by today's standards. He doesn't love watching sports, he doesn't drink beer, and he doesn't enjoy just 'hanging out with the boys'. That being said, he is dominate in other ways. He stands up for what he believes in. He ALWAYS tells the truth. He protects and always put his family first, yes, even before himself. He provides for us in every way he can. He has integrity and a black and white moral code that is unwavering. He is the most chivalrous man I've ever seen and after 10 years, he still opens my car door...every single time. I feel like he possesses the positives of a strong man in all of the good ways. In today's world men are seen as manly or unmanly by characteristics that are shallow. So maybe I have a different perception of manly than most other woman, but judging from this article and the conversation of this hour, I feel comfortable with that.
 
 

Friday's happiness hour was an open line hour which he does a couple of times a year. He doesn't have a topic so people can call in and raise any issues on happiness that they want. Some of the topics that the callers brought up were working at happiness. One caller stated that by thinking good and doing good, you in turn become a happy person. I would agree with that 100%. Another caller was upset about the direction of the country to the point that it affected his health and didn't know what to do. Prager said to make the effort, working hard to reverse the course of the country. That is the only way to stay on course and not let the depression take over. A woman called to say that she had lost touch with loved ones and wanted advice on what to say to her relatives when extending the olive branch. Prager suggested just saying you're sorry is such a powerful thing to say and that many times it is all you need to forgive the person. He says that saying sorry is often more powerful than saying I love you. I also agree with that statement. There are many times when simply saying sorry allows you to move forward with the person. One man called to say that he had just gotten back with his girlfriend and he was having problems moving the past the fact that she was with someone else while they were broken up. Prager said he shouldn't have a problem moving past it, because that is what people do when they break up, they move on. Did he expect her to become a nun during the break up? If things are good now, then he should thank God everyday. That is all that matters. He goes on to say that if people break up, that it means they were not the right person for them. If someone leaves you then you know they were not the right person and you shouldn't want them because they don't want you. Also, it has an advantage of helping to protect you from lots of hurt. I think there was a lot of wisdom in that response from Prager. There are so many people, especially young girls, who are devastated when someone breaks up with them, but it is probably a good thing. When you find the right person, you never break up. The last caller of the hour asked what was more important the person's happiness or the person's marriage vows. Basically the wife isn't happy and he explained that the marriage has taken the brunt of her unhappiness which has affected his happiness as well. He believes in his marriage vows, but nothing has changed for over five years now. Since Prager is Jewish he doesn't address the marriage vow. He stated it was because Jewish people marry under a contract and divorce is allowed, the do not consider marriage a vow. Instead, he closed by saying that a bad marriage is like a prison cell. I feel very sorry for people in a bad marriage. I think the worst situation is where one person wants to try and save it and fix things, but the other person isn't willing to make the effort. You cannot make a person do something when they don't want to, but why do people get married in the first place if they are not willing to do everything they possibly can to make the marriage the work and be successful? It astounds me. I hope that man's wife has something that opens her eyes. She is lucky to have such a dedicated man and hopefully she can see that before it is too late.

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