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A Letter Worth Posting From Andrew W.K.

For those of you who don’t know who Andrew W.K. is, this video should sum it up:

More importantly, a young fan wrote a letter to our hard-rocking friend, asking him what he should do about his close-minded right-wing father. He complains that him and his father do nothing but argue, and he goes to Andrew to see how he should enlighten his old man (click here to read). Andrew’s response is both heartfelt and profound. Give it a read:

Dear Son of A Right-Winger, * Go back and read the opening sentences of your letter. Read them again. Then read the rest of your letter. Then read it again. Try to find a single instance where you referred to your dad as a human being, a person, or a man. There isn’t one. You’ve reduced your father — the person who created you — to a set of beliefs and political views and how it relates to you. And you don’t consider your dad a person of his own standing — he’s just “your dad.” * You’ve also reduced yourself to a set of opposing views, and reduced your relationship with him to a fight between the two. The humanity has been reduced to nothingness and all that’s left in its place is an argument that can never really be won. And even if one side did win, it probably wouldn’t satisfy the deeper desire to be in a state of inflamed passionate conflict. * The world isn’t being destroyed by democrats or republicans, red or blue, liberal or conservative, religious or atheist — the world is being destroyed by one side believing the other side is destroying the world. The world is being hurt and damaged by one group of people believing they’re truly better people than the others who think differently. The world officially ends when we let our beliefs conquer love. We must not let this happen. * When we lump people into groups, quickly label them, and assume we know everything about them and their life based on a perceived world view, how they look, where they come from, etc., we are not behaving as full human beings…When we anticipate with ferocious glee the next chance we have to prove someone “wrong” and ourselves “right,” all the while disregarding the vast complexity of almost every subject — not to mention the universe as a whole — we are reducing the beauty and magic of life to a “side” or a “type,” or worst of all, an “answer.” * …But the truth is, the world has always been and always will be on the brink of destruction. And what keeps it from actually imploding is our love for life and our deep-seeded desire not to die. Our love for our own life is inextricably connected to our love of all life and the miracle of this phenomenon we call “the world.” We must give all of ourselves credit every day for keeping things going. It’s an incredible achievement to exist at all… * So we must protect and respect each other, no matter how hard it feels. No matter how wrong someone else may seem to us, they are still human. No matter how bad someone may appear, they are truly no worse than us. Our beliefs and behavior don’t make us fundamentally better than others, no matter how satisfying it is to believe otherwise. * We must be tireless in our efforts to see things from the point of view we most disagree with. We must make endless efforts to try and understand the people we least relate to. And we must at all times force ourselves to love the people we dislike the most… * Love your dad because he’s your father, because he made you, because he thinks for himself, and most of all because he is a person. Have the strength to doubt and question what you believe as easily as you’re so quick to doubt his beliefs. Live with a truly open mind — the kind of open mind that even questions the idea of an open mind. Don’t feel the need to always pick a side. And if you do pick a side, pick the side of love. It remains our only real hope for survival and has more power to save us than any other belief we could ever cling to. * Your friend, Andrew W.K.

Andrew W.K.

Source: <IJReview>

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2 Comments


Paulo Miro
09/24/14

I thought this post was very thought-provoking as it reminds the reader to take a very large step back from his or her beliefs and to consider the overall importance of his or her life as a whole. The post addressed the political side of things very well and yet I immediately related with it regarding another disagreement. My parents and I do not have the same religious beliefs and reading this post has challenged me to change my perspective of arguing with them to a perspective of love and understanding, where I seek to understand where they are coming from and choose to respect our differing views. Thank you!


Maggie Fenton
10/22/14

I love everything I have ever come across by Andrew W.K., so this article definitely caught my eye. I think that Andrew is definitely a type A person, or at least fairly close. He urges the recipient to understand his father, to seek information without making assumptions. He wants the recipient to find out more about his father and his life in order to understand his own. I think it’s very interesting that the “son of a right-winger” is so left wing, because often children follow in their parents’ political footsteps. I also think it is very IMT-esque to challenge your own beliefs and strive for constant learning. Blindly following the beliefs of a political party or religion without researching or understanding others is close-minded. Thanks for posting!

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Every story and individual struggle has a lesson to be shared. The LSA blog, or The Visionary, is a place for all members and readers to share their stories, creative works, or personal reflections.
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