Wednesday, March 07, 2007
Having it both ways.
The above is a screen shot of a section from the Woman's Day Magazine Website which is pretty darned representative of the women's genre of magazines, so I'm not picking on any of them in particular. They all do it.
They all imply one can have it both ways.
The covers either have a slim woman or a luscious dessert. Inside, they always have both. And we all want both, despite the fact that it's highly unlikely for that to happen. Only in fantasy land can we have a slim body and unlimited (18 varieties!) of gooey goodness.
I've got nothing against health or chocolate. I've got nothing against fantasy land. But what they are promising just doesn't happen. We know that. We don't want to believe it.
I've always gotten an inner chuckle when I hear the phrase, "I don't believe in..." Ghosts. Entropy. The cholesterol theory of heart disease. Some of these may exists, some may not. But one's belief does not change any of their existence, or non-existence, one iota. That truth dwells in reality, which may, or may not, have anything to do with one's belief.
I've been hearing about The Secret, a film that reveals the amazing claim that "wishing will make it so." This film is pretty persuasive, judging from the comments I've been hearing. But I think it falls less into the area of powerful ideas or good production values than in the simple wish for all of us, that it be so.
And if we all wish it were so, then it must be so, right?
Belief is powerful stuff, no question. It's the important first step to making one's dreams a reality. But it's only a first step. It's not the whole thing. Or... everyone would have a pony. And that's not happening, is it?
What does wanting it both ways lead us to?
The healthy doughnut.