Manifesto 2013: Defy Mediocrity, Refuse Cynicism, Embrace Earnestness

I'll never be satisfied with a mediocre, numbed-out, half-lived life. I want it all. The pain, the joy, the suffering, the raw realness. I'm no longer hungry for vicarious living or cheap substitutes. I watch my twin daughters and they teach me how to remember.

They teach me how to leap off the sandy cliff. They teach me the pleasure of pursuit.

I'm not talking about living a reckless, indulgent, lazy life whose energy is wasted, short-changed, dead-ended.

I'm talking about living on the sterling edge of well-honed virtue.

I embrace earnestness. I adore courage. I seek truth.

I'm not afraid of pain.

I will no longer say "I can't." I will say, "let's find a way."

I reject the mumbling mice and their mutterings of impending doom. I reject a culture of death that imprisons the human spirit and penalizes creative solutions. I abhor sanitized, tidy religion whose only power lies in binding rules.

I refuse cynicism and sarcasm, which are the double-edged sword of helplessness. I refuse the apathy of irony.  I seek candor, simplicity, transparency. I won't hide behind anonymity.

I believe in listening and cooperation. I believe in the validity of each human story. I believe in multiple perspectives and finding common ground.

I believe THERE IS common ground.

I want to spend out my life, exhaust it all, sow hope into the future.

I believe in delight.

I believe in merit.

I believe in struggle.

I believe in God.

I believe in love.