Friday, June 7, 2013

Follow up 2: Why are You Smiling?

Athough I have lived in Sewanee for over two decades, I was always a smiler even before living here, in fact it has been one of my traits and I consider myself a professional at this. It is a complicated subject and there are multiple reasons behind why people are like this. 

I grew up in a low-income family with alcohol problems and lots of stress. Somewhere along the way I started dealing with my family and myself by using laughter as a coping and denial mechanism. As I matured and began dealing with myself in a healthy way, I kept my sense of humor and it developed into a communicative method with others, to convey a sense of hope and positivity. 

A lot of people in the world live mundane or difficult lives, life can be very hard and there is much tragedy. But if we use smiling as a way of conveying hope, and seeing the good in each person,  then it is not the pejorative Polyanna (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pollyanna) optimism, but more of the Christian philosophy of seeing Christ in every person. This is not false "happiness" but the ideal of lifting people out of there own shameful mire. 

Blessings,
Dixon Myers

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