the mudpond

It's good to let things breathe in your imagination because often your initial response to it is not the best thought-through response. I savour little glimpses of life. Mine and those of people who turn me sideways and around. Friend or stranger. Even a child. (the world looks different from down there) Sometimes an author, photographer, artist. I let things saturate and incubate here. Hopefully, deeper meanings can percolate up and flower.

Location: Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

A stray cat.



IGNORANCE is the cause of a lot of sorrow; it wants to conquer,
while KNOWLEDGE wants to illumine.

disabled: Inoperative: a disabled vehicle. Impaired, as in physical functioning: a disabled veteran; disabled children.
Technology: Turned off. Not active. "Disabled" does not mean broken or in disrepair. It typically refers to software that has numerous options, or features, that are selectable by the user. If the option is disabled... that function is no longer active.

enable: render capable or able for some task.
Technology: To turn on; activate.

When it comes to disability issues, in this digital era, the technology meanings obviously hold particular and significant relevance and I hasten to add, empowerment. The meanings suggest we can choose to enable or disable our software aka mindsets.

And so, the Enabling Education Network has a simple yet profound insight that I'll bet you already knew anyway:

It is attitudes that disable.

So, whose attitude should we start with? The answer, like any light bulb moment, is so startlingly clear. It pierces the fog of ignorance, making it too painful for some to eyeball.

It starts with disabled people: their attitude towards themselves and their disability.

[I'm reproducing a long section from an article 'Attitudes and Disability' here]

The harsh reality is that if disabled people themselves see themselves as victims, then they will be treated as victims; if they are sunk into self-pity, they will be perceived as pathetic; if they are hostile towards non-disabled people, they will be shunned; but if they refuse to see themselves as victims, if they claim their own dignity, see themselves as positive and able to contribute, they will be seen as positive and able to contribute.

This is not at all the same as saying that disabled people should be quiet, stop complaining, and settle for some kind of half-life. Absolutely not. The issue for disabled people is ultimately one of self-esteem, of refusing to accept the role of victim. There are many different ways of expressing that dignity, but it lies at the heart of whatever choice disabled activists make, whether strongly militant or quietly persistent.

And in the words of Rachel Hurts of Disabled People's International:

'Social change initially comes from us, from disabled people. It has to.'

Okay, that's enough knowledge for now. Illumination is a process... Meanwhile, here's the article exerpted from the book Disability, Liberation and Development.

Yes, let our innernet of consciousness expand with new awareness and awakening sensitivities. Betcha, can’t get more 'First World Mentality' than this, can you? :)

"A life that is not examined, is not worth living."

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