Sometimes I can be really insensitive. In my quest to speak my mind and present what I consider the unfiltered truth, sometimes I don't respect others enough. Sometimes I come across as a know-it-all blowhard, so convinced that my ideas are right that I don't even consider the feelings of others. Too often I don't take seriously conflicting ideals and values. I don't validate the fact that each of our lives are very different. What I sometimes forget is that ideas aren't everything. Feelings and relationships are sometimes more important. Intangible things like kindness and understanding are usually more important and cherished than abstract ideas.
Who am I to ever come even close to condemning your values and your behaviors? Am I infallible? No. Here I am, spending hours of my life putting out sensitive music intended to comfort you...to make you feel. Anyone can see that I am seeking a sort of tenderness and connection with others (beyond that wonderful relationship which I already have with my wife and daughter). Yet when I get going on some political or idealistic idea, I end up alienating you by telling you that you're an idiot because you do believe in God, you do pay attention to sports, or you enjoy going to the mall. You could just as easily say that I'm an idiot for spending so much time during my productive years making music that will never be commercially successful. You could laugh at me for putting out ideas that are so far outside the mainstream that I only succeed in eventually alienating everybody even if, inside my own bubble, I firmly believe that I am right.
If, for example, believing in God is your way of experiencing beauty, if watching football is your way of coping with things, and if you happen to be struggling with some of the things that I have managed to overcome...then the only appropriate thing for me to say is that I do understand where you are coming from. Furthermore, I've been there. In the future I will do better to come down off my pedestal and acknowledge this.
This project has been a challenge for me. I am a great believer in art and ideas. I hold myself to a high standard and am willing to consider any idea, to put in a great amount of effort, even if it causes me a lot of pain in the short-term. But that doesn't mean I should project this standard onto others. Of course I will go on sharing ideas -- some easy to swallow and some that inevitably end up striking a painful nerve. I will also continue to be sometimes wrong and sometimes right.
We are all a journey and sometimes we have to stumble around in the dark for a bit to find the light. I will keep looking for the light, but I will try to do so with a lot more humility and sensitivity. I'm sorry if I haven't always lived up to that standard.