Mon. Jan 17th, 2022

To the Editor:It is difficult to trust people in the times in which we live, however, if we look into the eyes of those around us we should be able to determine where they are at and whether or not to exchange pleasantries.

We are not controlled by our parents, professors or peers but by fear. Fear has been instilled in us as the most effective means of self-protection and self-depravation. We have been forced to fear terrorism, identity theft and violence against us, among other things, because others have suf-fered and we must be cautious so as to not suffer also. By making us afraid we have been forced to proceed through life with caution while putting labels on people as to whether or not to socialize or even acknowledge them.

The other day I saw a firefighter and a schoolteacher being arrested for attempting to rendezvous with a 12-year old girl they had met in a chat room. I also met a cook here at WCU, who is also a pastor, and has devoted his life to helping others even while his wife and sons lay in the hospital after a horrific car accident that killed another passenger. You really can’t tell much about a person by their chosen profession or their social status anymore.

My natural trade takes me out of doors, so at this time of year I look for something indoors for a few months. I am a student here and I decided to get a job at the Lawrence Center for the warmth and free food (it really isn’t that bad). I have had some very engaging conversations with some of the other kitchen help and I have also had some ridiculous ones, same as with many of you. The other day I was baking in the bakery and I went into the cafeteria to get a cup of tea and nobody made eye contact with me. An hour or so later I took off my white baking jacket and hat and went back out into the cafeteria for a refill. As I figured, I walked through the salad bar area to the pastry line and then over to the refreshment table smiling and exchanging pleasantries with at least a dozen of my fellow students, none of whom I knew.

I have lived in a few other places and met many people in my travels. With regards to people, I have learned that their eyes tell their story. The eyes are the lamp of the body, thus if the eyes are good then the body is at peace. It would be a travesty to go through life never talking to the cooks, bakers, cops, professors or politicians you encounter because you knew of one who was bad. When you meet someone, look into their eyes and you will know whether or not to speak with them. You never know what friendships you might gain by talking to strangers after the proper lamp inspection.

In the grand scheme of things, we are just part of a magic trick in life. We are desperately clinging to the fur of a rabbit that is being pulled out of the top hat of a magician. The hope is maybe one day we will have the opportunity to look into the eyes of the magician and see everything clearly.

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