The rice experiment
“Miracles are not contrary to nature, but only contrary to what we know about nature.”
We are doing an experiment about the power of our words. What happens when we use good words; what happens when we use bad words. We got the idea from a Facebook friend who posted a link to this story about Scientific Proof That Thoughts and Intentions Can Alter the World Around Us.
We have three containers of plain white rice in the boys’ bathroom. If you zoom in on the picture, you can see that one of them says, “I love you” and “Thank you” on it. Another says “You fool.” The third says, “I do not see you” and “You do not exist.”
In the video that accompanies the above article, the experimenter, Steve, conducted his experiment for 147 days. His “thank you” rice still looks white. “The ‘ignore rice’ is the worst,” according to Steve. “It looks like sh**.” The “fool rice” looks pretty bad, too, but not as bad as the “ignore rice.”
We have been doing our experiment since January 29. In less than a week we have had some interesting conversations about it.
My oldest told me he said some really awful things to the “fool” rice. I told him, “fine, get it all out.” This could be a useful thing to do from that point of view, too (providing a way for kids to express things they shouldn’t be repressing).
My middle son told me he feels bad ignoring the “ignore” rice. “And I don’t really like saying the “f-word” to to fool rice.”
“I don’t like it either, honey. I usually just stick my tongue out at it,” I told him.
I thought about the “ignore rice.” It made me sad to think that being ignored can be worse than being insulted (per Steve’s experiment, anyway). That would explain why people would seek negative attention over nothing.
I had a so-called friend who gave me the cold shoulder once — and probably still would to this day if I ever came across her again. The last time I saw her was in the supermarket on the 4th of July nearly four years ago, when I had left a pool party to run out to for swim goggles. I did a double take because I did not recognize her as the person who was once my supposed friend. She just stared straight ahead. (I am sure it takes a lot of effort to consciously ignore people, when most people naturally acknowledge even strangers.) What was so surprising was that she had stood by my side when my mother passed, even hosting a get together after the memorial service. She had told me that my mother appeared to her in a dream a couple of weeks before she passed. I found this odd at the time, since my mom thought my pretend friend was troubled and was not rejoicing in my brother’s relationship with her), but who knows about the metaphysical realm (which is the point of this whole story anyway). Several months later because she did not agree with how I was handling something, she completely cut me off from every aspect of her life with an “I’m done” via text and social media blocking (just like Jr. High!). It made me rethink our so-called friendship. Real friends don’t do that. I guessed she just used me to date my brother, to enlarge her circle of friends, to…what? I don’t know. What I do know was it was not so bad being snubbed as it was to realize that our friendship was a lie. It is horrible to have the memories of my mother’s final days tainted with memories of this fake friend. I will never fully understand it because I burned the hate letter she sent me without reading it (I felt that if she had made a choice to cut me off, she no longer had the right to spew judgmental venom at me — you can’t have it both ways). It was hurtful, but truthfully, my life became a lot simpler without all the drama she had brought into it. That saying about people coming into your life for a reason, season, or lifetime…I guess she was a r/season. And I (unlike the “ignore rice”) am not the one that turned rotten and looked “like sh**. I have plenty of real friends.” Goodbye and best wishes.
(Well, now, I wasn’t even planning on writing about any of that, but since this blog is about “something different altogether” it really is quite liberating to write whatever I want.)
We got a notice from the elementary school a couple of days ago about a science fair. We’re wondering if we should enter this experiment, or if it’s too far to the left of “science.”
(It has been almost a week and all of the rice is still really white.)