Friday, December 31, 2010

An evaluation of time (#700)

I was talking to my brother yesterday. He was in the hospital to have his gall bladder, surgically removed. My brother John came through okay and we talked about how the pain was and laughed at different types of pain we have experienced that would compare with it. This was a good conversation with my older brother. I lost my oldest brother Jim to a heart attack 6 years ago and I still wish I could talk to him. This highlights for me the finiteness of time. It really just seems like yesterday that we were all kids playing together. I have not lost any time but it seems that time has escaped from me. I am well into middle age now and I recognize the value of every moment whereas when I was younger I had the mindset that time was not something worthy of my consideration. I suppose I am no different than anyone else who wakes up into a new day and keeps on living their life. It is just that there are moments now that permit me to pause and consider the time I have spent and the perspective I get about how much time I could have left. When I was younger my biggest fear was not being able to live out a full natural life span. It is also true that I threw myself carelessly into dangerous situations that could have easily ended my life. The paradox of what was going on inside my head, lol. Being at each end of the spectrum of my thoughts and actions during my life I have come to know this, there are no deserves in life. There is only this present moment, my memories of the past and my hopes for the future. As I keep moving forward through life, accumulating time, I am fortunate to know that time is finite and what I do with it is my legacy. It is the measure, not just in the length of my life, but in the abundance of virtuous manner as to how I live my life within the limited scope that is allowed for me.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Dig deep to find the truth (#699)

It is so convenient in today's world to hear someone say something that sounds like it is right and accept it as truth. I am sure this has been going on since the beginning of time for us humans. Our individual worlds are busy, full of priorities and chaos, that learning and keeping up with commentary from new stories and comprehensive information becomes nearly impossible. What we find ourselves doing is connecting with some information outlet and relying on their fact-checking and overall conscious of what is happening and taking what they say as what is true. I have done this most of my life, especially if the conscious of the information being portrayed is in line with how I think. For many years I did myself a disservice by not evaluating what I was taking in with other points of view. I was subjective in my filters of information and their eventual reasonings. I have since broken out of that self-centered mode to a more open paradigm. I find that listening to all sides of any policy or position within news has given me the freedom to understand and make my own judgments. I find the truth has many layers to peel back before it is finally exposed as itself. I am not too busy anymore to know information and the intelligence it gives me. My priorities are to be informed by being objective. I am in a constant state of checking all information, even my foundational understandings against other points of view and facts. This is what life should be like, an opportunity for all of us to discern our own opinion and not let others do that for us out of convenience. It is okay to say I don't know. But it is wrong to say I know when all I have done is take someone else's talking point and made it my own. I am okay with how I present myself with the truth, at least it is mine and I am always open to learn more!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Taking things for granted is wrong (#698)

if there is one thing I know for sure it is this. I have joy and happiness within me. All I have to do to get it out is stop taking things for granted. When I do not have any expectations, my life is full of appreciation for things that help me in my life. Before, when I did take things for granted, I found that I was angry and made some of those around me feel inadequate. The cumulative effect of me expecting things in my life, on those who cared for me, began to disintegrate our relationships. I was blinded to the fact that my expectations on others was selfish. Even worse was the fact that I did not portray the same respect back to them I expected from them. I really was a selfish ego-driven demigod in my own mind. After having lost some relationships it began to occur to me that no one worth having in my life wants to be in a one-sided relationship. At times we need to receive and at times we need to give. It is just how we are. My own specialness began to deteriorate in front of me when I saw how callous my actions were and what effect they had on others. I have always been a good and kind person but somehow, someway I got lost to who I was and became something unrecognizable to those who really knew me. I have since found my way beck to me and since then I have come to practice one really simple thought, do not take anything for granted. All of life is a gift and nothing is deserved more by one over another without putting in the effort to achieve it. I have also learned the tremendous power of humility. It is almost a reverence that I live my life by now, doing for the sake of doing because it helps in my giving and through giving I also receive something of far more worthy in value, my joy and happiness.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The value of the human being (#697)

I stand tall and strong, pound my chest and say I am human and I am alive. Why do I do this? It is to remind myself that I have value. I am not some rock or microbe of insignificance, I am a human being who is capable of thinking and acting. I am just like every other human who can think and act. It is important to have intelligence about knowledge but it isn't what is the most valuable quality. Of greater value, what I contend to be our two natural instincts, are compassion and curiosity for all. Our baseline that defines who we are is what is natural to us. All other things are the journey we travel. At our core we are defined by understanding that we care for each other and we want to know things. Compassion and curiosity are the impetus for us to begin our movement, all other things are the momentum to keep us going. Only because we have care for each other and wonder about all that is around us are we able to use knowledge and the intelligence it provides us. What gets lost in this existence and how we developed our society is that material and prestige have somehow risen to greater value than the human entity. Wars, throughout the human record of life, have been fought for less noble ideals than the value of life. We have been taught that to trade life for materials is necessary and expected. Somehow our focus had been deviated from living in harmony with all of existence into hate and fear. It is my contention that in the denial of compassion and/or curiosity lesser human traits are allowed to develop. So how did the absence of compassion and curiosity originally happen? I can only assume that our ancient ancestors were, through some act, denied their care and/or wonder by some confusion or chaos. It is by default, my position that hate and fear were learned behaviors and not instinctual. Some event must have caused the fertile ground for our now prominent lesser natures of hate and fear to grow. Only in recognizing this knowledge can we have the hope to bring ourselves back to our original instincts. This is obviously my own opinion.

Monday, December 27, 2010

The wise are humble (#696)

I am mostly proving my point from two fronts. Humility in itself is not an indicator of wisdom, although it does seem to be a trait in most abundance with the wise. I know some humble people who are not learned academics or self-taught righteous proclamers. They are just simple in how they approach life. To each his own and in some ways simplicity in choice does show a fair amount of wisdom. For the most part however, the wise are secure in the knowledge that they understand circumstances and are not bellicose to describe such things. They do not choose to draw attention to themselves as an ego assuagement. Instead, they choose to humble themselves because they know they are very lucky to have insights into things that others have not yet gained. The other way I know of humility being a trait of the wise is through the opposite expression by those who would appear to be wise for reasons other than honor. There are people who speak out on subjects of importance with only a narrow view of the subject. Their most bombastic rhetoric is in direct contradiction with humility. As I have learned, through time, they are often proven to be wrong and/or deceptive in forwarding their insights, usually for personal considerations. In other words, those who speak out the loudest most often can be dismissed as not coming to us from wisdom but instead from ulterior motive. Prime examples are those who are paid to "explain" wisdom to us on television and radio shows. It appears that since one has some knowledge of a subject they are accepted as being wise about that subject and all those subjects that have commonality with it. Nonsense! Wisdom is out there to be found, a key to finding it is recognizing humility and distinguishing the nature of the humility.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Break out of the hard place (#695)

I am not satisfied with how I feel today. I do know this, I am able to change that by how I think from now on. I can choose to feel less than hopeful if I want. I can also choose to be more than hopeful as well. It is up to me. I often forget that I have that control. Previously, I would chalk things up to fate and say, "well this must be how things are since this is the way I feel." That was acquiescing to randomness as a control. I am so much more aware now and do not think of this existence as the plan. I think of existence of being a boundary for me to plan my own existence. There are some physical, emotional and psychological patterns within me that give me guidance in how I plan my thoughts, actions and behaviors, but nonetheless, I have the control. If I choose to be happy then that is what I can be just by putting my will toward it. There are also some limitations I live under as well and knowing these and recognizing my ability to function despite them is the key to me being able to manifest MY destiny. It is appropriate that I have this understanding of my place here in existence and how I reflect who I am. Time is short here, I have found this out the usual way, by living through it. As such, I am more determined than ever to have the kind of experiences I dream about come true. The only way for that to happen is for me to begin from a place where all the possibilities can come true. That place being in my thoughts. Like this morning, I am not always starting out in the right frame of mind. One thing I have learned is that I cannot assume that I will be where I want to be within me without constant attention to what my present situation is. I am a complex entity that needs my constant attention, otherwise I will lose sight of my ambitions and drift aimlessly, all the while wasting more valuable time.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Individuals within a community (#694)

Sorry to spill the beans but here is the truth, we are individuals who need to live with each other in a community. We are not one or the other of these in total, we are both in total. Our need to be unique is well observed from generation to generation. Individualism will always be something we must work out in our own way. But similarly, we are also communal, we need to be nurtured and share experiences so that we don't ever have to feel like we are alone. This dynamic of having to be separate while at the same time being together is something of a complexity that foreshadows our futures. We are inexorably linked to a concept of dualism. I have stated this before and again I will also do here, we are in the infancy of our species' evolution. What passes for complex now, will no doubt only seem simple at some future time in the destiny of humanity. What is needed today however is for us to recognize our particular paradigm of needing to be one while also needing to be one of many. It seems logical that we would be able to distinguish the difference that both realities offer. They are both real and deserve the conscious thought that should go into making them conjoin as a working unit. We take time for ourselves and we take time to interact. Both are separate functions we control as much as we are able. Some things are, by necessity, out of our control, that is not unusual for any of us. But what we do with the opportunities that make their way to us is all in our own hands. Our dual need to be is also a challenge to us to find the best of what we can do and instill that into our actions. Daily, I sacrifice what I would want for the sake of what others need. We all do this, it is why we know that our lives are more complex than just ourselves. We are also a community of souls who are trying and maintaining our life in order to advance beyond this present time into a future time. Our individual strengths are best reflected when there is someone or a group to share it with.

Friday, December 24, 2010

The necessity of hope (#693)

I was recently having a conversation about what the meaning of hope is. An expectation or "A belief that something wished for can happen"-Wiktionary. Certainly some hopes are nearly and/or impossible to achieve. Regardless, we still find a way to give some possibility to the event(s) occurring. Most hopes are just wishful thinking and pipe dreams of our wild imaginations. But their necessity is quite important. Hope gives us a way to endure those things that would deteriorate us without it. Possibilities are what hope are. Some probable but most improbable. What I wish to discuss though is the necessity of hope. Hope is what we can dream about and dream for. Hope is our inspiration for things not yet achieved or even realized. Hope can be the boundary for all things to work within to achieve. As you can see the necessity of hope is what makes us visionaries. I know none of this is news to us but to be reminded occasionally cannot hurt. Hope is an ideal for thinking, planning and acting on a life for ourselves and for others. The least I get from hope is that my principles for living have a structure for beginning. We are not just a species that understands the present and needs to survive within it. Through hope we get to glimpse at what the future could be and effect it in some way or another, our choice. As such, that hope is a necessity and of a value, is certain. It is also something that is undiminishable. Regardless of the stress and denial of human care, hope will endure where all other forms of mental logic will fail. It is inexorably linked to our will to survive and shall always be elevated in importance as to how we approach the living of our lives.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The promises we keep (#692)

The promises we keep are the bonds we build in our relationships and are vital to us maintaining those relationships. The promises we don't keep are the ones that hurt and tear apart the relationships we strive hard to keep. It is important to realize that when promises are kept good will is likely to be maintained and achieved. But just as inversely proportional or even worse is the broken promise. Always be wary of announcing a promise without being sure of your effort and intent to complete the promise. In my youth I will always remember how promises were both kept and broken and how I felt about both. When promises were kept I was happy and expected them to be so. That was bad on my part since I truly did not appreciate the effort that others gave from themselves to keep promises with me. When the promises were broken I would feel the emotion and physical pain of betrayal and self-loathing. this was wrong also, the best of intents cannot sustain an effort to keep a promise on their own. Sometimes promises are not meant to come to fruition. I am not offering an excuse or reason, to letting promises go unfulfilled, but that promises are broken is not always due to lack of effort or intent. My goal is to make those promises I do and keep them. Whatever that may be within all reasonable circumstances, even in unreasonable circumstances. Promises are the bonds we put into words to reflect our motivation and intent. The recipient of our promises also has a stake in how we either complete or not complete our promises. When the decision comes down as to whom has to sacrifice, the promiser or the promise, for me it will always be me, as the promiser, who has to sacrifice. I get to make that decision based upon what kind of man I want to be and how valuable I want my word to be known.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

The price of peace is hard work (#691)

Now that my title shows that I have solved that dilemma, we can move on to other things, right? Wrong.  Anyway, it seems to me that when ever there is a conflict of any nature, the only recourse, that is not violent, involves the ability for people of different viewpoints to discuss them. Now discussion alone is not always or nearly enough. Compromise and/or creative thoughts need to be offered as solutions. I would rather have taxed my brain over a period of time to mentally wrestle out some kind of answer as opposed to jeopardizing any living soul in armed conflict. "War is not the answer"-Marvin Gaye is known to sing about in one of his classic songs. I agree and wish for peace to find it's way into our lives in a real and complete way. One of my Facebook friends, Carla, recently commented that in her 55 years on Earth ( same as me by the way), that she has never lived under peace. I started to think about her comment and I agree with it. There has been war waging since my conception on our planet without stop. The one hope I will carry from all this chaos of death and destruction we inflict on each other is that progress has been made in some conflicts that have avoided greater needless bloodshed. The progress has been accomplished by persons who would stand up to violence as an option and instead furthered contemplative and creative dialogue for resolution. It is easy to give in to anger and force to settle differences in the moment, but the effect causes emotions of deep hatred and lasting revenge. In accommodating the insanity of self-destruction, which violence truly is, we retreat from civilized solutions and historical achievements. The price of peace is hard but the payoff is lasting and satisfying.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

My eyes are wide open (#690)

I do not ignore what is happening in our world. There is much good in our world to behold and marvel at, likewise there is much horror that is cruel and nightmarish. It is easy to put on a filter and only look at the best of what is happening around me. It is not what I do for myself. I force myself to look at the pain and anguish as much as I am able, in order to instill within me my sense of outrage and courage. I need to teach myself that I am not immune to what happens around me as much as I like the security of being shielded from the outrages. I need to be taught to stand tall and face up to outrage despite what actions may come at me for my stance. That old saying of "if your not against it, then by default, you are for it." I will not allow myself to be lesser of the man I am trying to be. I cannot solve all that is wrong nor can I solve much at all, but I do not have to be silent on any of it. I have found that by making a stand against bad people doing bad things is something that is welcomed by other like-minded individuals. It seems that once someone takes a risk and makes a stand others do as well. Sometimes I can lead and sometimes I can follow, but stand up I will. I feel responsible for the actions and activities that happen on our planet while I am alive. Superman complex? maybe so but without the illusion of being that capable. Change can only happen in the face of bad force by standing against that tide of momentum. We are all examples of what is good in life and at times we take turns being the first to take the lead on effecting change. I find it is now my duty to call out what is wrong when it is wrong. I will not allow myself to sit in a default position, allowing wrong to perpetuate, when I can make an effective action to change it.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Greater expectations (#689)

Not for me, but out of me. I am past all that, what's in it for me, stuff. It is hopelessly vain and not integral to who I truly am. Yesterday I wrote about harmony and that is what I want all the time for myself and all others. I can work toward harmony for myself directly but for others I can only be an example. I have much work to do yet. I am still passionate and at times over-bearing in my beliefs. Staying on an even-keel for all circumstances is not something I have prepared to do all of my life. I am a recent convert to objectivity and calm discussion, however being a convert does not make me in any way a perfect practitioner. That is just process however and not the tougher assignment of thinking thoughts that keep me in harmony and aimed at greater expectations for myself. It is as if the rudimentary expectations I do reflect now, are just the foundation of what I hope to build off. I expect myself to help when needed or to go out of my way to make someone else's life better through some sort of act. The key to who I am is simply put this way, life is not just about me. I am only a small part of a long continual pattern of human species who dwell on this planet. But in that knowledge of who I am not, I get to define who I am. It is up to me to decide what destiny history will record about me. I have always been strong of mind and soul. Knowing this I am able to give of myself and find enjoyment through that. I do not need to be exulted in any way, contrarily, I would rather not even be noticed. I am self-satisfied with how I think and what actions I take. This is my reward, fulfillment. I am at a good place but I want to be at a better place so onward I go expecting even more out of myself.  

Sunday, December 19, 2010

The struggle for our identity (#688)

There are forces that exist which would prevent harmony from being our species greatest attribute. The forces would rather things remained the same so that a way of life can be maintained. It is a choice of judgment as to what life is and how it should be lived. I am but a singular force with little impetus but, nonetheless, I am a force. My direction of how life should be lived revolves around a harmony of compassion and curiosity. No other motivation consumes me. I do live in a society that is interspersed with levels of education and comprehension, which makes communication a difficulty. We all have different needs and wants at different times in our lives which also complicates finding harmony. But despite the differences and challenges, we may be able to find foundational agreements that are beneficial to us all and lead to harmony. Life is not a perfect scenario with hopes and dreams that are a constant with reality, however, basic human practice of compassion and curiosity can lead us through the contradictory, blinding mazes we erect for ourselves. Back to those unfortunate other forces for a moment. The status quo is never easy to change. When power is held it is not easily given back. The worst of our natures will reveal themselves and overrule those natures which could do benefit. We are a fragile species, given to fear at the drop of a hat. It is this very prevalent fear that guides the forces that would keep us from finding a social harmony. Unfortunately we are in the midst of these fear driven forces and unshackling ourselves from these fears is our greatest test if we are to find our identity. As a child I looked at the world with the true innocence of newness, why that cannot still be as I am in adulthood has everything to do with all of us finding our own true identities; compassion and curiosity.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

In a call for help what will I do? (#687)

When I was growing up I could not even think about helping others unless it was an emergency right in front of me. I was too busy thinking and acting on my own behalf to care about what others were going through. The old out of sight out of mind philosophy. I am not proud to admit this but there it is anyway. I have grown from this insensitive position to one where I make myself available to circumstances beyond myself. I am available now to help when I hear the call for help. I cannot explain the transitive moment or circumstances that led me to who I am now but It has definitely something to do with maturity. By maturity, I mean to say that my perspective on my world and the rest of the world has changed. I no longer think in terms of what kind of advantage or fantasy can I obtain, contrarily, I think about what kind of positive mark can I make on the world today. My soul has grown into a place where it is in conjunction with my mind. A firm stable place from where I can stand with confidence and the freedom to be who I am now. I no longer peep around the corner to see if the coast is clear. lol. I stride confidently into my present and future with the purpose of a man who has something of value to offer and is willing to do so. What is so revealing to me about all of this is that through time and experience, I have continued to grow as a human being. Just when I think I have something all figured out I now know that I am just beginning again. It is funny this thing called life, it gives and it takes with no rhyme or reason, but if I continue to grow as I am doing it shows itself to be the most satisfying dynamic yet in what few years I have left within this existence.

Friday, December 17, 2010

The reward of discovery (#686)

I am not talking about an Earth shattering discovery, but just everyday discoveries that help us along in our days. I have maintained from the start of this blog that one of the two natures we are born with, curiosity, compassion being the other, must be allowed to manifest itself otherwise darker, less than noble traits will emerge due to the inability of curiosity to fulfill it's function. When curiosity is allowed to manifest itself then the opportunities for discovery increase. I bring this up because I want all to know the importance of discovery, even discovery that has a negative or painful outcome is still vital to being known. I have this certain way of looking at us humans and how we live. It is not much different than a life form inside a petri dish. We are still mostly just here on the planet, working toward what we will eventually appear to be. Not unlike the organism in the petri dish, we are still working out what is truth and what is fiction and in this process we are beginning to take on a form of something that truly defines us. We only get to who we are by moving from here to there through discovery. Our curious natures must be allowed to flourish with as little interference as possible. The truth of why we are here in this existence and how we got here are still yet unknown, but to continue to search through any and all evidence known and yet discovered may give us an opportunity to find out. I would rather face the truth of life than to cower from it in hopes that it doesn't hurt me. Much of living life is the same. Having a boldness to discover and continue to care to survive is our nature. When we put our natures toward action we can then find our destiny as a society of humans who must discover, if we are to fulfill who and what we are.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Changing myself is a constant (#685)

If I am not motivated to change who I am today, then the prospects for tomorrow become limited. Everything is in a state of change, everything. By not improving myself in a constant way, I will lose some advantages I have already achieved. Life is not a constant. Yesterday has already left and the only thing here now, is the present and a possibility of a future. I am here to inform everyone that life is a constantly, changing experience only interrupted by necessary sleep. While I am awake I am in need of changing. Most of what needs to be changed at this stage of my life is still everything! There is no firm ground I can stand on and shout to the world that I am here and will not be moving from this spot. Neither, physically, emotionally nor mentally. Once the concept of [change in perpetuity] is realized then the real living of my life can take place. I am liberated to the rationalization that anything is indeed possible. I have the wherewithal to effect any situation from any position I comprehend of myself. I become more than the Chameleon, I am a continuously evolving human whose true identity has yet to be defined. My destiny or story will be written on the pages of time after time has ceased to exist for me, not before. Those who do not wish to see that life is about change are the one's who will be left with a life of doubt about their own fulfillment. There is a difference in being secured in the thought that I have arrived at some place in time where my purpose has been revealed and the lack of understanding that means I am done changing within my purpose. Yet even now I still see more change for me, even beyond a purpose I have found for myself, so can you see that change is constantly inevitable? I have and I will do nothing less than to keep myself open to the new and old as a means to continue learning both.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

On the subject of emotion (#684)

For anyone on this planet who thinks that there is no truth to love or heartfelt emotion, then they are hopelessly dead to emotion. For all of us who have lost someone to death who was so special in our lives, we know the truth about how powerful love is in a real sense. The logical ones will try to dismiss emotion as some past instinctual behavior unnecessary for the new modern human being. I can only shake my head at such thinking and remind myself that without the emotion I have in my life, the richness and fullness of experiences I enjoy would be illogical. Love does exist and it exists in some cases so powerfully that when loss is experienced, the mind may even refuse to accept the loss on a rational basis. The pain becomes so overwhelming that the mind creates a scenario where the loss never occurred. A disjunction from reality as a survival instinct to combat the tremendous sense of heartfelt pain. I have been a part of and seen in others this type of survival mechanism. Our connections to each other is an imperative for us in this existence. We all need to get back to the root of who we are instead of, some unrealistic concept of our imagination, that which we might be. The beauty of how we work as an individual and communal species is just waiting to appear and it only can do so when we are in both modes of application, emotional and logical. I have learned the lesson of how powerful emotion can be and what influence it has in how we operate. How I feel about love and it's connection to those I feel love for, is just as important to me as breathing. Emotion and logic are what make me human and if I am not experiencing both, then in my mind, I am not human.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The two sides of myself (#683)

I cannot help but to be. I have much passion for how I see life should be lived and I am inevitably faced with a frustrating reality. So much so that my emotions are weary of being depressed from fighting for my vision that seems so logical and right, but failing most always. That is one side of who I am. The other side is much more care-free and open to enjoying each moment as if it is my last. Not irreverent or cavalier but tuned out to the chaos of aggravation and tuned into the beauty of what is before me. A sort of, I can see the acuteness of each tree despite the obtuseness of the whole forest, mentality. Without the two sides of me I am afraid I would be useless as a person. When not in argument over how life could be lived I take the time to actually live, like life should be lived, even if it is only for me . My perspective can only grow from such an arrangement and I do not end up howling at the moon as a consequence, lol. Survival is what is intuitive and instinctual within me and having the ability to disassociate my logical and compassionate mindset to a more curiously innocent one, has given me the advantage of enjoyment of life and allows me to step back into the battle for the direction of our humane society, when I am properly rested. The two counterparts of myself are distinct and serve me well. I have no illusion about this complexity I admit to, it is what it is and it is justified in my own mind. In my own mind, where by the way, all things to me form shape and understanding. I use this blog to describe my thoughts on a variety of subjects that are interpersonal to all of us but in this case I can only define how I operate and leave to the readers to draw their own conclusions on how they operate to maintain a semblance of self in conjunction with reality.

Monday, December 13, 2010

The wisdom in our world (#682)

There are two main points I want to make here. First, that experience and knowledge do help to clear up many confusing points of view, and second, that thoughtful time is also necessary to bring about the common sense and intuitive knowledge we need to be able to understand our world. It is common for wisdom to come to those who have not only time in life but also a keen common sense of knowledge. Words on paper help to describe history and philosophy but without a context of experience, these words are left lacking. Over time and having experiences that can be related to our own personal perspectives will we then, hopefully through objectivity, find ourselves entering into the arena of logical debate about or society. That is common, but not the only way our world can be understood. Insightful reasoning from our youth and their perspectives are not unheard of. Never discount the role of passion when applied to principles of virtue. Even the youngest thoughtful minds among us can rise to great common sense perceptions of objectivity, through knowledge and even limited experience and time. For the most part though, we are all bound to study and experience real life to be able to understand how our society works and how we can make it better. There is no shortcut to a sustaining wisdom. It must be earned through time, experience and knowledge. There must also be a passion for something greater than the individual. Our world is not just about ourself, it must always be considered in light of all of us here since the instinct of our species is to nurture and grow. We are social creatures who cannot live without each other for very long at all. In light of who we are, we then can figure out where we need to go as a species inexorably linked by a web of complexity. May we all gain the wisdom to see our mutual benefits within a panoramic whole.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Bravery is sublime (#681)

Perfection is a sensation. A feeling of being one with all the Universe is an emotional experience unlike anything I have ever felt. I know several people who would question my sanity for making such a statement since they cannot fathom how an innate concept can be felt. I tell them that it is through the act of bravery that a feeling of perfection comes into existence. My argument is up for question with them since they no not of what I say. The actual act of bravery must be performed for the test, of whether a feeling of perfection exists or not, to be verified. Most are not willing to defend to the very core that which would be described as a brave endeavor. To put oneself in a position of vulnerability is seen by many as ignorant or the ultimate foolishness. So much of our society is wrapped around the concept of protecting our individual self, even to the extent that it harms others to do so. That is seen as the proper way to exist as opposed to bravely protecting those ideals of a virtuous human conscious from violation. The fear-ridden notion that we recede inwards into a shell of protection is only advocated by those who have not felt the sublimity of bravery. Once I had achieved this feeling of perfection, my perspective about who I am and what is important in the world had changed. I do not take advice that contradicts principles of virtue, I do not take suggestions or follow the lead of those who would put their right for more above those who have less. Words like courage and bravery mean something special when you have paid a price to learn them through action. They have length, depth and breadth, they are what is of the best of what exists within our souls. Concepts that when experienced will enlighten a person to the full experience of what it is to be human.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Life is the journey (#680)

Why do I say this? Simply because I hear so many people talking about how things should be and how to do it that I want to clarify their assumptions. In some instances it is well and good to not go howling at the moon, I understand when advice of this nature is given. What I am referring to instead is the kind of advice that tries to determine a process for action when other viable processes for action exist. We are not here to get somewhere. Where would we go? Earth has us captive except for a chosen few astronauts. Then shouldn't our experience here on Earth fit within what we want for ourselves and what we can do for others, not what others think we should have? The actions we take, no matter where or what we do, should be with the thought of experiencing life while going from point A to point B. There are certain expectations we have for ourselves and attaining those through achievement is commendable and respectable. But the actual attainment or achievement is not the purpose for our lives it is a justification of sorts for how we want to live our lives. Is there honor in what we achieve? Have we earned what we attained? How did we do these great feats? Whenever I am pursuing a goal it is the details I experience that give me satisfaction when I am on a quest. How I achieve or attain, especially noble efforts, are even more important than the actual attainment. I have a simple philosophy about my actions, every one of them, I tell myself that every thought and action I think or do is being recorded and somewhere, somehow and sometime they will be viewed by others. I place a real or imagined paradigm of hoped for reality on myself which serves me well in reminding me that everything I do has a significance. My journey is my signature to define to anyone and everyone who I am and how I live.

Friday, December 10, 2010

The importance of truth (#679)

Yesterday's post was focused on honesty and how we need to have it as the first premise of every thought we have. Today I want to continue along that thread of thought to explain the importance of truth. Truth gets us to honesty. When we have the clarity of reality before us, when making decisions based upon truth, it allows us to present ourselves in an open and clear light for interaction. In my personal experience, I have found that when I am dealing in truth, and the facts of it, I am thoroughly engaged. I listen to responses with an acuteness reserved only for the logically rational. In other words, I am, who I am supposed to be, when in the presence of truth. My spirit, my mind and my emotions are all on the ready for understanding. It is as if without the truth I am less of who I am and less optimistic about who I will be. I need air, water, food, shelter etc... but as well I need truth just as vitally. I know I can continue to survive in  our present society without the truth being dominant in all things, but I also know that I am not fulfilling all my potential when I am not surrounded by the truth. Many reasons are given for sheltering us from the truth but the sheltering is an illusion. Not only that, it steals from us our true reality which is ours to perceive and live within. I am not naive in the idea of why truth is so elusive to many of us. There are agendas by powers that be who have, perceived and real, advantages in maintaining acts of illusion. But my response to that is "at what cost?" Is it so hard to imagine that we could all tell the truth and achieve those things we strive for? If we all give each other the respect of being honest, have we not then risen up off the solid foundation of truth?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Being honest (#678)

Being honest. For such a thing to be, much must be thought out. Allowing for time to think before responding in an active way is imperative. Despite the best of intention, many other factors and situations must be considered. It is invaluable to begin at the point of truth however, before any real thought is given to being honest. I have found that when I try to present an honest thought in some way that is disingenuous I have nullified the objective of honesty with a dishonest delivery system. In other words, manipulating honesty is counterproductive! I need, as well as desire, to let honesty stand on it's own and be a part of whatever happens after that. I don't get to create the illusion that is not mine to create. I have to trust in how honesty is perceived and live within that boundary. When I think of how I want to be treated it is with the honesty that exists not some form of it meant to assuage some aspect of my reality. Despite the best of intention, I need to deal with reality and not a false sense of it. I know that some, myself at times included, have thought that by changing the truth just enough to protect someone, they and I were doing them a favor. Wrong!!! We all need what is real in life for us to be able to better understand how to live in life. The real pain and joy that exist should be ours to absorb as they naturally come to us all. I have much faith in the human species to be able to adapt our instincts and need to survive to whatever truth may appear. It is essential that we keep our communications based on foundations of reality. For all of us to be honest is the first step toward helping each other face and grow from the real life circumstances that belong to us.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Intention versus reality (#677)

I often get caught up in the intention of an action I would like to proceed with and sometimes lose sight of whether the action I wish to perform is really a wise thing to do. Nobility of the action aside, often other perspectives tend to be less redeeming when viewed from the overall act. I get this. So in lieu of doing something sometimes that I know or realize may be construed differently I acquiesce to not doing it at all. This is and can be disheartening since the original intention was to do a positive thing. Funny how complex life can get and also unfortunate as well. I know that well intentioned motives are not enough when deciding to do something outside myself. Other factors need to be considered. Today, I am well aware of this and tread lightly, with a sense of respect for what a good intention on my part may do, but also how it will make others feel. It is not up to me to fix or make things better that which are not my direct responsibility. What I can do is reach out and offer, where it is appropriate, a helping hand that is offered solely in kindness, with the expectation that my offer will be declined. It is the least of which I can do and if declined, I know that I have tried to do the best of my intention. Charity, through the act of love, is easier to give and much more difficult to receive. I know so many proud souls who want so desperately to make their way in this world with their own two hands. Even the suggestion of an offer is enough to make them cringe. I am a proud man as well but my heart at times recognizes the really difficult times and I do want to make a difference where I can. It is my nature to care.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Vigilance as a requirement (#676)

One enduring trait all of us should have learned to keep close to us is the action of being vigilant. "the ability to maintain attention and alertness over prolonged periods of time."-Wikipedia. Nothing in this life should give us the impression that we are immune to being made unsettled or uncomfortable by the whirligig of confusion that envelopes our existence. Whether it be environmental or societal, we are at the mercy of forces outside and beyond our control. If we are to maintain and/or improve our lives we must be aware of what could happen as well as what is happening. Our focus on the generalities and the specificities of what is happening around us is our own responsibility. We are in a state of existence where we are beginning to rationalize our promise and also our vulnerability. For our futures to come to fruition our very present must become solid and foundational with the best of our principles for living. Whatever they may be they must define us in action and thought. We have to remain vigilant in expressing who we are and what we see as our future. Not all futures will look the same and some will have different pathways to them, regardless, anything worth achieving requires sacrifice. I trust the natural instinct and overall general welfare we have for our species. We are an enlightened, creative, decent form of life and the continuing of us into time immemorial should be what all of us aspire toward. Staying "on guard" is a watchword for being vigilant. If we want to keep the best of who we are in practice and thought we have to stand upon a determined vigilance to defend and fight for our hopes and dreams. Our work is never done and rest is only a pause to re-energize. The notion that we have done our part and it is time to relax and enjoy the fruits of our overall labor is an illusion. Life is hard and needs to be fought for from the first breath to the last. 

Monday, December 6, 2010

Greater than we (#675)

What is that I say? Something is greater than we? I cannot say that unequivocally, but I can say it as a probability. The unknown yet discovered in the Universe beyond our small area of understanding has the capability of being greater than we. Certainly there is nothing yet in the Universe that compares with our life form, but again we are in the infancy stage of our evolutionary development. Our still simple to complex mindsets have yet to become disciplined to the greater complexities that the Universe surely awaits to reveal to us. Only our ability to be confident in our own knowledge base, as unfulfilled, will we be able to be prepared for what is revealed to us next through our relentless, curious instinct to learn. Not knowing something is not the same as knowing we don't know. At the very least I know I don't know. I can admit to being uninformed but that does not mean that I don't know that something out there will eventually fill that void of not knowing. It may sound confusing, but I know I am still learning because there is still so much to learn. As much as I respect the fact that I am a part of this existence, I cannot let myself assume that I am one of the greatest entities of what is in a Universe. I have, as a member of the human race, only recently ventured to set foot on another orb like the Moon. There are reported billions of other stars in the Universe with their own unique solar systems, filled with planets. I only wish that aging to death was not a factor in this existence as I then would be allowed the privilege to be here when we do explore the full widths, lengths and depths of the boundaries, which make up the mystery of life and it's environment.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

My helplessness makes me smile (#674)

My helplessness seems at times to more than make me smile it makes me outright laugh. I want so much for my personal life as well as for all our lives through a better society, but alas, I am mostly faced with disappointment. I know this is usually the outcome, but my hopes and desires are so real that the sensation of their non-achievement is emotionally and physically painful. It is then that I analyze my situation and the smile or laughter begins. I get caught up in the notion of deserves and should be's that I forget that I nor any other single human being has control over what may be. My life will be unfulfilling in many areas and I know this. Such is the lot in life of every human. This ability to immediately recognize my mistakes in the hoped for fruition of every aspiration I have, is somewhat a new phenomenon for me. I would get depressed and act out in the depression for long periods of time. Oh woe is me syndrome. lol. Being taught to have a thick skin while staying sensitive to my hopes has been a long and hard road for me to travel to get to this place of understanding I am at now. I still feel the sting and gut punch of my dashed expectations, but the time I spend in that space is seconds and minutes now, not weeks and months. I am able to remember that I only somewhat control me and nothing else. I take great solace in this awareness since it focuses me back on what I am doing every moment instead of on things that are outside my actions. Of course others will always try to manipulate and control others through power and influence but that is their choice for the quality of life they wish to live. I can stand against injustice wherever it is but I cannot force my aspirations on others when they have their own to fulfill. At the very least that is my choice. :)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Our future is ahead of us (#673)

The importance of knowing history and having perspective notwithstanding, our future is what we need to focus our intentions on. We take what is best from our past and present and form a blueprint for the future. How do we start? We use our imaginations. Here again I will post a quote from Robert Kennedy-"There are those who look at things the way they are, and ask why... I dream of things that never were, and ask why not?" Our imaginations can be the key to what our future can be. We can all be the architect of what the future can be. No one is more or less able to imagine the future. The struggles humanity has endured to get to a point in time where we are now is quite an historical story. We have, through pure grit and determination, refined our evolution from a hunter/gatherer to a more civilized social body. Where do we go from here? I can imagine a society that is all over the outer edges of our knowledge with technology, ingenuity and innovation leading the way for us to maneuver in time and space. Our future destiny as a species is unlimited by any other force other than our own and those in the Universe we have yet to comprehend and conquer. The great unknown will soon, in our evolution, become known and when it does become so, we will be looking for the next great imagination to lead our species into it's continual future path. I find it exhilarating to think that although I will not be around for it, our species, that which we will eternally be a part of, has such great promise and hope of living out the best of who and what we are through our ever advancing determination to go boldly into the next exciting future.

Friday, December 3, 2010

By helping you I help myself (#672)

This has been a learning experience for me. I have much in my life that I am thinking about at any given moment. It makes sense, since I am the one whom I am ultimately responsible for. But the lesson I am in continual learning mode about is that though I need to make decisions, concerning how I function in life, I also need to think about other things. What has been a pleasant surprise is that when I am struggling with something in my life, it suddenly becomes easier to resolve when I turn my mind to helping other people with their problems. Clearly for me, when I turn to help someone else I take my mind off my problems and focus on other people instead. This time away from my own problems seems to help give me clarity when I get back to it. Or, in other words, a different perspective, which usually translates into a simple solution for me. There is also something about helping others with their problems that seems to lift my spirits and make me feel good inside myself. It is almost selfish on my part to know that if I help other people I get to feel better. A win/win type scenario. Are we not all looking for opportunities to win/win? Lest I forget to say again, the good feeling I get when my spirit is lifted is also a benefit as well. So more like win/win/win. lol. I have found that learning this lesson of helping others to help myself is an ongoing daily routine I am trying to incorporate into my life more and more. Apparently, something like this, that seems so right, must be part of my better nature and therefore if good for me then why not good for you too? If our world was more about this approach, how much better would our existence here be?

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The struggle to find my convictions (#671)

This post is about me. It is how I came to know what is important in life to me. I know we are all different and many reasons exist to describe who I am and how I live. I was taught by my parents, family members, friends and teachers. What I took in from all these lessons is what eventually defines me when I am out putting to action my convictions. It took time for my convictions to define themselves to me. I always knew what kind of human I wanted to be in theory but that is difficult to do when life in reality is so complex, or so I thought. Now that I am older and have perspective about mine and others' experiences, I see that there really is no reason to ever compromise my convictions. I know that now, to live in the ideal way I have always wanted to since I was a child, I must always let reality exist around the truth in my life. When I stand up for and with my principled convictions, the outcome will be whatever it ends up being. The outcome isn't up for me to decide. I don't deserve to be able to control what will be, no one does. I get to be a part of whatever it is, period. I am satisfied enough with that. I know that my life is what I do have some control over and reflecting back to everyone else who I am and what I stand for is my full time job. This may sound like I am not trying to do more about things I could effect in ways outside or greater than my own person, that would be wrong. I am trying with all my might to effect greater outcomes but I can only do that by being the best me I can be. Instead of trying to manipulate events or people I am only trying to be an example for others if they choose to turn there focus on me.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

How we judge each other (#670)

Remembering back to my early childhood, I was so innocent. Everything was new and fresh for the first time. My eyes were wide open with expectations, even though I did not know what to expect. That time was the best my life has been since. Why is that? Well, I thought anything was possible at any given moment, I admired everyone and everything and I was going to be a part of whatever was going to happen. I was just waiting to learn to be great like everyone else. However, that was not my outcome. I was quickly made aware that negative attitudes and less than noble instincts were at play in life and I was just beginning to see them for the first time. My high expectations of living in a world where everyone cared about each other was shattered. I began to see that people were labeled as different things and that these different things were not equal. I began to notice how words were used to describe some as either one thing or another instead of a mixture of many things. I was told to stay away from some people because they were not like me. What did that mean? Life became confusing to me and I was less happy. I started to feel fear as a reaction to being around certain "types" of people when before I was honored to meet new people. My world at that very young age of innocence was taken from me and in it's place was a darker more cynical one. I remember how I used to smile at the sunny days and look forward to new adventures. I still smile at the sunny days but the pure joy I felt has been gone since the days of my innocence. I am not the only one, everyone else has lost that first innocence they were born with as well. Our inability to see each other as family instead of with suspicion has taken our lives in existence, from innocence to fear.