Brad, as with all this, you are very welcome to your opinion. And to that, you are going to read it through your own unique lens, set of prejudices and assumptions, as do we all. While I can appreciate that you have a take, and an opinion (of which there are 7.6 billion on earth and growing fast), you also have the choice to not comment at all if you aren’t impressed, don’t like, or don’t feel “enlightened” by something any one of us writes.

For my part, and I can only speak for myself, as can we all, this wasn’t a “personal rallying cry,” nor was I feeling defensive. If you choose to read it that way, that says more about how you frame things, and the value you place on someone else’s words, than what I wrote. This is a universal truth about each one of us. As I have written elsewhere, any time I read an article or piece that brings up emotions, that is far more a statement about something that I am carrying, that I personally need to look at, than the writer him or herself. That is a potential gift, should I have the courage to look at it.

There is a very large body of work to my name, Brad, not only on Medium, but in a triple prize winning book , in fact two of them. Human behavior fascinates me. How people choose to respond — especially when being critical of someone’s opinion piece- is extremely instructive. One of the most fundamental laws of psychology, that which every one of us learns in our first year of psychology, is projection. It’s knee-jerk, and even though we may be aware of the behavior most of us have no clue that we do it when we do it. So when you accuse me of being defensive, I might ask you,with all due respect, Brad, what part of my article made you feel defensive?

This is the heart and soul of personal work. It’s not fun, it’s not easy, but it is an opportunity, instead of writing criticism of someone’s post, to ask ourselves why are we feeling this way, and why on earth do we feel the need to lob such comments at others? Especially when the opportunity exists to read it, not like it, and have the grace to simply move on without taking a pot shot at the author?

There are plenty of articles that I either don’t like or don’t agree with. Every single one of them offers me the chance to add value (choose not to criticize) or to add hurt (criticize).

But that’s just me. My piece stands as it is. No defensiveness. If you see it as a “rallying cry,” that is your interpretation and yours alone. What that tells me, more than anything else, is that there is something in the folds of your inner world that may warrant a strong flashlight.

As with all comments, I appreciate your taking the time to write. I respectfully take gentle issue. If what I have written offends you, well, then. That, too, is highly instructive.

I wish you well.

Horizon Huntress, prize-winning author, adventure traveler, boundary-pusher, wilder, veteran, aging vibrantly. I own my sh*t. Let’s play!

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