Dyed in the wool (good or bad)? Sounds pretty ancient to most people who read a term like this. Must be some irrelevant meaning from the past that probably does not have any applicable meaning in todays world. And then to tack another meaningless word on the end such as loyalty. Does anyone have loyalty to anything anymore? Do these words mean anything? Remember, great men govern with words.
Dyed in the wool is a term that refers to someone’s beliefs or ways that are unchanging. Like the wool that is raw and then receives dye, it is unchanging at that point. So goes with people who are engrained with beliefs when they are young and when they grow to adulthood, they stay the course.
Loyalty is a strong feeling of support or allegiance. This can be towards almost anything and have varying levels. Someone can be loyal to supporting a sports team only to the level of where they sit at home and cheer them on every time they play on television or they can perhaps even become season ticket holders which shows a different level of loyalty by having to absorb some financial burden. Then there is loyalty till death which is the other end of the spectrum. This is a loyalty that runs deeper than most people can imagine or even understand.
We now see a relationship starting with these two words if we look at the meaning of dyed in the wool being strong fast and never changing and loyalty meaning life or death. What type of issue or item might bring someone to the brink of death due to loyalty? Is it family matters? Material issues? Loyalty to God and Country? It can be any one of these or maybe all of them. There is great risk in this level of loyalty. You ask, how can being dyed in the wool of loyalty be risky? For one, when it comes to death, there is always risk and the fact that it might be you the one who dies.
Let’s take for instance you are at a professional ball game (alcohol included) and some fan from the other team insults you, or better yet, they insult your spouse (blatantly). You, being the protector of all, you decide to defend your spouses honor. The next thing you know, your loyalty just ended you in an argument. Now the decision has to be made, just how far do you take this. Till the death? Are you smarter than that? See, sometimes we don’t realize how quickly things can escalate and keeping a cooler head about things usually prevails for the better.
Now take for instance you are in your house with your family and an uninvited intruder breaks into your house. What do you do? Is this a situation of loyalty to the death? I say yes. We have to use a measuring system when making our decisions. In one instance (the ball game) we would end up in prison (more than likely) or dead and in the other situation you probably wouldn’t end up in prison depending on the circumstances. Again, that would have to play out in a courtroom.
Then there is the loyalty to our Nation. This one is near and dear to my heart. I have always said there would be no finer death in life than to die fighting for one’s country. Again, another concept a lot of people cannot even imagine. The only way I can explain it is that some people have a dying love for freedom and others do not.
Are you loyal? Do you have a measure of standards that are not changing to which you will defend at some level? Are you dyed in the wool from a young age and develop stronger feelings of loyalty over time? I can say one thing in my life that I am sure of: I am dyed in the wool of loyalty about so many things on so many levels.