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Sunday, December 29, 2013

Not Everyone Gets It

Hello All -- Time for the story of the Ten Plagues.

G-D instructs Moses and Aaron to give a more visual pitch to Pharaoh.  Despite His earlier anger at Moses for asking for Aaron's assistance, He decides to "work with" them by asking Moses to play the role of G-D, and Aaron to play the role of His prophet.  Apparently, there is such a thing as flexibility.

They demonstrate how Moses' rod can turn into a snake.  Pharaoh's sorcerers perform the same trick, but Moses' snake devours the others.  Given the snake's prior role in tempting Adam and Eve, it appears that the snake had been an enforcer of The Almighty, rather than an agent of evil.

Despite this clear use of "signs and wonders" to campaign for the slaves' freedom, Pharaoh denies the request once more.  So G-D ups the ante.  Hitting Egypt where it hurts, he turns the all-important Nile River to blood, rendering it undrinkable, and then causes an overpopulation of frogs.  Pharaoh agrees to free the Hebrews if the plagues cease, and they do, and then he retracts his agreement.  And then came the lice, the cattle disease, the boils, and the hail.  Every time Pharaoh promised to free the slaves in order for the plagues to stop, he turned back on his word, because he apparently believed that no further consequences would result.

Everyone knows someone like this.  You can explain something to them until you're blue in the face, they will look for and find an excuse to disregard it.   You can make the best argument you can, with all of the evidence at your disposal, and they can still reject it anyway.  You can actually provide the consequences for their actions personally, and watch them suffer those consequences until they can't stand them anymore, and like this Pharaoh, they simply will not learn.

Moses and Aaron were answering to a Higher Authority that wanted to remind His Chosen People that He existed, and that He would bring them to where they needed to be at a time that they were not able to do so.  Since they were not the ones making the decisions on this campaign, they did not have the option of throwing up their hands in despair before the job was finished.  We, on the other hand, have the good fortune, and the luxury, to do exactly that.

When the Point of Frustration is reached, going further will only harm yourself.  You'll only be banging your head against the wall, watching your words enter one ear and exit the other, and wasting your time, breath, and energy on an unprofitable venture.

The better course of action here is to just give these people enough rope to hang themselves.  If they won't heed warnings, advice, and constructive criticism, then they will either (a) learn things the hard way at the last minute, or they will (b) go down in flames, yet again.  You can then relax on the sidelines, either silently cheering that they finally got it, or shaking your head because they just knew everything better than you did.  At that point, it's no longer your concern, it is only theirs.

Go In Peace . . . .