SPIRITUALITY, FAIR TRADE AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
#1

Downward Mobility

in Post / Views Mon Oct 28, 2013 3:15 pm
by shiva28775 • 13 Posts

Hi all,

Do post your views on 'Downward mobility' here

Wishes

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#2

RE: Downward Mobility

in Post / Views Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:20 am
by Ryan Ennis • 4 Posts

Text #1
"The principal life strategy is "upward mobility" toward the goal of "success."
While some can never rise high enough on the slippery ladder,
others can rest content with a modicum of.~~ecurity. But no individual
can change the rules of the game. Even when.they act with good will,
upwardly mobile individuals participate in wider, ambiguous processes."

We live in a society that places a large emphasis on the ability for people to succeed no matter what background they come from. However, we haven't made close to enough of an effort to make this statement true. People that grow up in poor neighborhoods with poor public education and often times absent parental figures are disabled from the beginning. Sure there are the rare few that have the talent and motivation to give their children a better more secure upbringing than they had, but they are the exception to the norm. I've mentioned in class before that I had the blessing of growing up in a great home with great parents and great education and this offered me the ability to take risks and have a security blanket to fall back onto. The scary part about that is that I don't know if I would have been able to go to college and make the relationships I've been able to do if it were my fortunate circumstances growing up. It's difficult to maintain a positive attitude on life when society doesn't ofer you the ability to fairly grow. It's tough to learn in an environment where you're schools don't have the proper funding to educate in a civil setting. It's difficult when you're surrounded by crime and poor influences. Therefore the only solution is to change the system that has caused this unfair unequal distribution of resources. I'm not necessarily saying that Capitalism needs to be overhauled, it just needs to have its teeth brushed.

Text #2
"A sense of being accepted ourselves enables us to recognize the
humanity of our neighbor, especially the outcast. That shakes the
foundations of a world divided into important and unimportant people."

This notion of understanding and accepting other people no matter of their personal or economic differences is crucial to a better society. I think we often, especially in America, band-aid the surface of our societal issues without focusing on the cause and root of those issues. For example, there has long been an issue of mental illness in America that has been thrown under the rug. We fail to embrace people as mentally-handicapped or mentally-ill but instead treat them as if they have control over their actions and thoughts. One of the large parts of this issue is personal fear that one will be judged or discriminated against if they are known to be mentally ill. People don't want to be diagnosed with mental illnesses because of the stigma that is associated with being depressed or mentally handicapped. These people are far too often ostracized on the fringes of society and left to feel isolated and alone. We need to make efforts as a society to be more open-minded and accepting to people of all sizes shapes and forms. We need to see beyond ourselves so that society can not only be better for us but also as a whole.




Ryan Ennis

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#3

RE: Downward Mobility

in Post / Views Mon Nov 11, 2013 4:29 am
by Stacie Schwartz • 5 Posts

I originally thought that “Downward Mobility,” just based on the name, was going to be about the cycle people with few means find themselves in as they struggle to find their way out of hardship. Instead, Brackley suggests that people can become more Christ-like by separating themselves from “ladder climbing” upward, instead choosing to move downward. In moving downward, the people who have chosen this lifestyle (like the judge) have found a way to simplify their lives and find solidarity with those that live in obscurity.

I found his analysis of competition, as it harms people, very interesting, “The logic of the ladder fuels the kind of competition that undermines trust and community. From my slippery rung, I perceive the climber below me as a threat.” (p.5) This perspective is based on insecurity (which is covered earlier in the section), a feeling that I’m sure everyone has felt it at some point. Helping others, instead of fearing their ability to overtake your success, is the best way to move forward in any activity. What benefits the team will undoubtedly benefit the individual – unless you’re working with terrible people… and then I suggest not working with that kind of group anymore!

Rumi’s poems have a wonderful sing-song quality; they sound like someone dancing around while they talk. The subjects drift between love and life, among other topics, and when he talks about the proper way to live one’s life there are gems scattered throughout. Most pertinent to the subject covered in Downward Mobility are the lines, “Wanting wealth, power and more tasty food / have made you drunk. / When you can’t have what you want, you get headaches.” (p.13) As I have become aware of all the things I could have, I find myself wanting those things and wondering if I’ll ever have them. There was a simpler time in my life (when I knew about fewer material things) that I felt like I didn’t need as much to be happy. Now my mind wanders…

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