Creating the country we want to live in

Maramis Choufani is the Managing Editor of the Las Vegas Tribune.


Maramis Choufani is the Managing Editor of the Las Vegas Tribune

We often hear about creating our own reality. A major multi-faceted business, the “believe in yourself and do what you need to do and you, too, can achieve your dreams” concept has been around for quite a while and has been built around the concept. People have spent thousands of dollars to learn from so-called experts how to make their wishes or dreams come true by following a few time- and experience-tested principles or “laws” of creation.
While those behind this Create Your Own Reality do not all have the exact same mindsets, they are all likely to tell you that if something happens to you, as in something goes wrong or causes a problem in your life, it’s very definitely something you did that brought that problem into your life.
It sounds too good to believe that we could create our own reality; if we could, as individuals, then if we all got together, maybe we could create the kind of country we want to live in. And if that worked, maybe someday we could create the kind of world we want to live in. Of course, those who try to “sell” that concept are selling it to make a profit for themselves. We can easily be convinced after we hear the “pitch” over and over, or even once, if it is presented in a way that resonates with our mind and soul. We can’t wait to get started on creating our own better life.
Yet somehow something happens between paying all that money to learn the secrets of making things go your way and getting back to real life and seeing that maybe they missed something when they had to use the restroom. No matter what they did, life still happened, and it wasn’t always what they intended!
But while they were working on it, they noticed that if they did things on a positive note, with both the hope and belief that the best things would happen, fewer things went wrong. In fact, not only did fewer things go wrong, but more things were going right.
Maybe there was something to this creating your own reality stuff after all. Maybe it wasn’t a fireproof plan for all things, but maybe it could help us change a lot if we just gave it a chance. But how would we start? What would we do differently? Maybe we’d have to do a little more than the You Can Create Your Own Reality People told us about. But what would that be?
So if we put some effort into it, maybe we could make the huge jump from what we learned at those paid seminars for making things go the way we want them to, to actually doing something that would work once we figured out what that was.
So after much musing, and thinking, and mulling things over, a few ideas popped up that seemed very reasonable. Perhaps instead of hating and assuming hate from others, what if we assumed neutrality that could go either way depending on what we said and did. Then when the response is more on the positive side, we can go forward and believe and expect the next encounter we have will also be positive and maybe even bring us closer to the reality we are hoping for.
But in order to create the reality we want, first we have to know exactly what we want and then set out our plan for creating it. So step one: think. Step two: decide. Step three: write it down. Step four: write out the plan to make it happen. Step five: believe that it can be. Step six: desire it with all your heart. And the final step, step seven, which many people forget, is to bring God into it and ask for his blessing on it and the strength to carry it out.
If we can indeed create the reality we want; if this is something that could really happen, should we put all our energy into something just for ourself, or maybe be generous and altruistic enough to create something so very worthwhile for our whole country — at least for
starters, before we create it for the whole world.
What would any of us want for our whole country? Perhaps viewing each other as brothers and sisters, listening to each other, getting to
understand each other, helping each other, solving our difficulties with each other with love and compassion — perhaps simply applying the golden rule to every circumstance. Imagine how things would have turned out just this past few months if everyone believed that we were all brothers and sisters and we were put on this earth to help each other, not take what someone else has, or shoot them to get it or
maybe for no reason at all, leaving a trail of misery, pain, sadness, bitterness, destruction, hate, and the desire to wreak more and more of the same or anyone you have decided is different from you or who believes different than you do, who looks different or who belongs to the wrong “tribe,” and so forth.
Hate will always and only breed more hate, and the acts that follow breed all the destruction. Why haven’t people by now figured out that we can create a better reality for all of us if we really want it?
What would we really prefer? Clean, peaceful and happy neighborhoods, with everyone helping each other and caring about each other, or burned-out homes and stores, no one ever knowing when violence will break out; people having no regard for one’s religious buildings or sanctuaries, no regard for life — whether it be the clergy, those who attend the religious services, mothers out shopping, fathers just sitting on a bench, children at play, or even babies in their strollers — and no regard for anything apparently, since they have allowed mob mentality to take over the thinking part of their brains, using only the animal-like part, the amygdala, to take action (not make rational, life-affirming decisions) that allows them to feel hate, follow others who also hate, and put that hate into action, breaking and destroying property, burning buildings, cars and more, uglying up the walls, streets and anything that can take a spray-painted message, and as the final insult to everything beautiful and filled with the potential for happiness and peace, to randomly or deliberately and intentionally, shoot at friends and strangers, so-called enemies, fathers, mothers, children, and even babies, showing us all that that must be what they prefer.
So apparently we are creating our own reality. And it is very ugly and brings only sadness, destruction, and despair. But what would happen if all those contributing to that picture of reality preferred the clean, peaceful, happy neighborhoods? How do you imagine it would change that picture of reality that we now already have?
It takes a whole neighborhood and every neighborhood across this land to participate in making a beautiful, peaceful, and happy America a reality. Isn’t that what we prefer? Why would we put our energy into the ugliness of death and destruction?
It seems so clear that those who carry hate in their hearts — whether it’s for a person: a pauper, a pope or a president, a race or a religion, or a cause that only leads to more destruction and will never create a safe and happy neighborhood or country — are only creating the reality that spills out from that hate. The majority of us have had enough of that and will work overtime at not only planning the kind of reality we want, but working at it, with every person we meet.
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Maramis Choufani is the Managing Editor of the Las Vegas Tribune. She writes a weekly column in this newspaper. To contact Maramis, email her at

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