Saturday, June 30, 2012

The purpose of justice (#1247)

I have no doubt that practically every human being believes in justice as a human right. I cannot think of one time in my life where I have chosen to think that justice. as a virtue, is unworthy of my efforts to fight to maintain. Certainly there are times and situations where justice seems to be impractical or unfairly weighted as an outcome, but that is due to our implementation of justice, not the logic of justice. A society that does not value justice on an equal basis for it's citizens is not practicing democracy. It is rather instead practicing a system of favoritism based on unequal factors. The privilege of citizenship is it's own reward and is a fulfilling characteristic by itself. There is no need to adjust one's citizenship as more worthy than another. I am a proud member of our society on whole and I wish to see it become more of the ideal of it's foundation, since we are not there yet, by constantly working toward equality and justice on one level for all. My ideal thought on this is not some coordinated attempt to smother our individuality with conformity. It is rather an attempt to get us all at the same starting point so that whatever our motivations may be they will have the same opportunity to flourish. It is logical and humanely right for we humans to bring all into the sphere of a just world. We can only get there if we all are on the same starting block in life. We have different backgrounds and wealth variations, yet when we secure ourselves in working for the same goal, establishing a point in life where what we need to grow is the same for all, we not only help ourselves through integrity, but we help our society achieve the justice of a society that values progress and innovative thought as a species and not just as an individual within in our species. In summary, we are only as strong as our weakest link so let's make all our links strong.

Friday, June 29, 2012

The US Supreme Court ruling on the health care law (#1246)

Yesterday's decision caught off guard and stunned many of the partisans on both sides of the political spectrum. What is happy to report is that the outcome served a progressive vision for our country and not a selfish individualistic one. This is a turning point in our society and sets the stage for a greater participation in not only health care opportunities for millions of Americans but it also reinforces the ideal that community is essential for society to advance in an enlightened civilized way. There will be many who question the intent behind conservative Supreme Court Chief Justice John Robert's decision to break from a potential conservative majority that would have struck the health care law down but instead sided with progressives to advance health care to many more millions of Americans. Some will say he had ulterior motives. His decision to use the tax code, instead of the commerce clause, as an avenue to let the health care law advance is surely a plan by Roberts to attack other amendments and laws previously decided through the commerce clause. The problem with that line of reasoning is that Chief Justice Roberts could have accomplished the same goal without having upheld the health care law. He could have just as easily sided with the conservative majority and struck down the law and still found the commerce clause widely invalid for the constitutionality of health care reform. Instead of some ulterior motive, it is plain to me that Chief Justice Roberts just simply adjudicated his decision on the necessary health care reform law with the width and breadth of gravitas that should be the norm in Supreme Court rulings instead of the constant ideological maneuverings that typically denigrate the courts stature.  

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Science exposes myths and mores (#1245)

Before the foothold of science could be established a system for dealing with the unknown came into existence out of the imaginings we were susceptible toward from our human fears. The boogeyman and death were too much to deal with when we had little understanding of what they were. We settled upon ourselves the comforting belief systems and folklores necessary to abate our fear of the unknown. Our human history has shown many different and varied customs of social acculturation along these lines but they all have one dominant characteristic, they were all evolved from our fear of the unknown. Today, we are further along in understanding the unknown and many of the legends associated with our fears have been dispelled. However, some of these legends are persistent in attraction and require more than just science to alleviate them from the illusion they presently offer. That alleviation deals more with social and economical practices and therefore harder to root out of our psyches since they have become standard behavioral practices. Going to church every Sunday is more about social acceptance and interaction than it is about an absolute belief in the dogma of any given religion. Although science does question everything and in obvious ways exposes myths and mores for what they are, science cannot undo generational behavioral practices overnight, nor should these positive behavioral practices be altogether halted since we do still lack conclusive knowledge concerning our individual spiritual natures. It is just that a perspective on what we need to survive and exist is changing and evolving as we dig deeper into the unknown and discover that our fears are not the guiding light of what we have before us.  

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Post American democracy (#1244)

What will our country's political system look like when the corporations have completely ingrained themselves into every facet of American life? I am sure it will be an authoritarian one. We Americans who are not part of the ruling class will have to fend for ourselves as best we can. With little money and resources to build a comfortable life from, we will be forced to accept whatever provisions Corporate America decides to allow us. Corporations will control our government, which is how we make laws. They will control our one and only Corporate American religion and force us to abide by it's tenets. They will control our military and police forces so that none of us have any chance of overthrowing their coup of our democracy. We, the 99.9% of Americans will become just another resource for Corporate America to utilize. The transition is taking place as we speak but it is happening so fast and comprehensively that most people do not realize what is being done. In fact, people are so unaware of it's happening, that we people are actually helping the transition along. We agree to privatization of all of our governmental services, we agree to no longer making higher education affordable and we agree that social advances in race and gender are antithetical to American idealism. Corporations have so captured our imaginations with the allure of prospective wealth that our greed is fueling their takeover of the democracy our country was founded upon. The time is short in what is left of what America has been and the time is soon for the birth of a Corporate America, answerable only to the Board of Directors and never again to the people they will rule over. I suppose I should just jump on the bandwagon and enjoy what I can of losing of my freedoms and liberty to a profit driven power.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A bridge too far (#1243)

You know, when someone or some people have stepped across the line of no return? Zealotry and blind ambition are precursors to this phenomenon. We humans are emotional creatures and at times, more often lately, we are prone toward living in the emotion instead of measuring our emotion with contemplation and reasonable logic. Illogical ideologically driven motives skew our perception of what is best for all to enhance what is best for some. I say that with the innocence of someone who would rather not think that an ulterior motive of greedy selfish intention is behind the callous and reckless adventurousness that some forge upon the rest of us. My naivete aside, when the logic of an ideology is incomprehensible, yet determined to prevail, one must at least wonder as to the rationale for the genesis of the idea. How in the world can the most prestigious body we have in our society, at least the institution that should be gifted with the virtue of gravitas, utterly fail at rationalizing the easily understood concept of antithesis. Our conservative majority US Supreme Court just reaffirmed their lack of leadership and insight into how our Democracy functions. By allowing unlimited corporate spending in our political arena to move forward without restraining the obvious disadvantages it places on the average American citizen, speaks more about, not the lack of understanding the implications but, of an out of control  ideology that has gone too far in disrupting the core of our democratic idealism. Our US Supreme Court is supposed to be the protector of democracy, yet in this recent ruling from Montana, it has shown that 5 individuals on the court can and will deprive America of it's cherished right of equality in the sphere of political speech. A bridge too far indeed! 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Intellectual maturity; reality versus illusion (#1242)

What do we envision as maturity? Is it what we see others acting and doing that gives us the ideal of a mature person? Living a mature life is not the same as acting a mature life. If all we are doing is living to an image of what maturity is, then we are not being mature. Our own life and the maturity it expresses has no predetermined pathway. Maturity is a function of the unique circumstances we encounter and react, or not, toward. Maturity is not some ideal that is superficially applied, it is not living as a character in some play. Maturity is the result of many trials and errors that eventually give rise to perspective. The boundaries of maturity are limitless and maturity cannot be acquired without having an objective viewpoint on all that we can possibly know. Age does not equal wisdom, nor does it equal an intellectual maturity. Neither does stature of wealth or power. Maturity is not a prize that can be won in a contest, nor is it an item that can be bought in a market. Maturity happens when someone cares enough about everything; and is patient within their lifetime to humbly realize that they know very little at all. If there is one personality characteristic or behavioral trait that Intellectual humility can blossom from it is in a curious humility. The fat rich cat smoking a cigar and drinking his brandy does not represent maturity, he represents a certain type of aggressive prosperity, which is the ideal of the illusion of maturity. The reality version of intellectual maturity is expressed by anyone who lives beyond the confines of consumerism, beyond the confines of power and beyond the confines of glory. The intellectually mature person sees the essence of life as existence and does not qualify it with a conclusion, rather this person accepts the existence and lives in awe of it.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

We don't need an army we just need to vote (#1241)

The great civilized advancement here in America is that we don't need to bear arms to overthrow our, out of control, inhumane political representatives, all we need is to advocate for the right policies and vote those out who do not adhere to them. It takes a bit of courage to stand up for what you know to be good and right but that little bit of courage is required if we are to continue to have a society that reflects the best of our natures. We are not an idea nor are we a set of rules governed by what others think we should do. We decide what we think is right and then we vote our conscious. If there is one civics lesson out there that needs to be remembered at all times it is that equality of choice and opportunity must never be infringed upon to favor some other ideology or class distinction. We are a nation of diverse individuals who bring all of our cultural ideals to be expressed into a society that allows the freedom of choice, not demand! There is no one greater ideal for morality, ethics or justice that supersedes another. As long as the ideal of equality is at the conclusion of all policies, we are good. When equality is not at the end of a policy, then the policy is nefarious and has been instituted for an ulterior motive. We are the check and balance of those who would define our society and when we do not exercise our power, our vote, then we are acceding to the whims of those who would disregard equality and opportunity for their own political/economical gain. I cannot just blindly trust anyone, and I mean anyone, without vetting what they are doing if it affects me. I have the right and the duty to question everyone, regardless of societal stature, when it comes to community policies. 

Saturday, June 23, 2012

The strength and power of honest selfless conviction (#1240)

All subtlety included, I can spot a liar a mile off. It is easy, they exhibit mannerisms antithetical to their words. I can also spot an honest purveyor of truth from the same distance, they have no inhibition or hesitation in their pronouncements. When someone is trying to lead by sacrificing themselves in order to put all others in a better position, the act of it is clear. When others choose to put themselves first and only a few in a better position, it is also clear. That we even have to observe the choice between two diametrically opposed presentations is saddening. I hear the term exceptional applied to our country here in America and I know it is just hollow when comparing the term to other nations. Every country has something exceptional about it, we do not have the copyright on the term. In fact, if being lied to on a constant basis and governed and adjudicated by special interests is exceptionalism, then we all need to go to the dictionary and familiarize ourselves with the real meaning of the term. Our past history has many examples of great leadership that, despite myriad obstacles, eventually found a way to fulfill progress in applying democratic ideals. Our country was founded on the idea of equality and the opportunities that freedom would nurture. What we have forgotten is that selflessness is the key to maintaining that promise. Our country has given us all hope that any of us can do whatever our dreams and hopes can envision without having to ask for a "by your leave sir" from anyone. We need leaders who will continue to hold up the promise of our founders and as well continue to fight for the totality of a democratic America and not just those who serve a selfish purpose.

Friday, June 22, 2012

We decide what we are (#1239)

There is one choice in life we get to make all for ourselves and that is who we want to be. There are consequences to what we choose but regardless, it is our choice. Despite all the taboos and morays of society, we are ourselves first, and then if we choose, we are part of the community. We only get to live this life of ours one time and intentionally holding ourselves back with prohibitions and inhibitions out of some perceived fear or duty to convention is irrational. I am not saying that all things need to be done with an air of disregard for convention, but what I am saying is that this is our life and what we do with it is our story, not something to be regulated and conformed. If we don't have the panoramic view that all things in existence are here for us to experience and know, then we are sheltering ourselves from what is here in existence. Why do that? We are here for the learning and discovery of what life is about, not to just exist in some stable manner that denies our senses and our indestructible curiosity. That we are born is indicative of the will to live we have endured, so why treat life as a bookmark instead of as a book? We are not just breeders of life, we are discovers of what life exists within our known boundaries and beyond. Some have irrepressible motivations to understand and experience and some have less of these qualities, however we all share some degree of them. Let's not lose sight of what we each are capable of and let's not defer our lives to some sedentary existence that denies what we can become. The only thing holding us back from what we are is ourselves and some misplaced fear about whether we deserve to be ourselves. 

Thursday, June 21, 2012

The law of unintended negative consequences (#1238)

Leaders who lack a panoramic foresight will always be at the mercy of this phenomenon. They push through proposals that on the surface seem simple but when applied to our population at large they soon find nothing is simple. Every bit about life is complicated when having to consider the varying and differing perspectives we all share. Yet still there are certain ideologues who cannot see past their own sense of what is right and wrong and will not be persuaded otherwise. Those are the ones who need to be relieved of power over others. There will always be imperfect concepts applied to the general population on whole but trying to alleviate as much as can be known as negative consequences should always be discussed through extensive communications. We here in America are a democracy and as such should practice democratic principles in order to satisfy our founding intentions. Ideologues have other ideas about practicing democracy and that should never be allowed to stand. ideological concepts like decreasing regulations on resources used by all can have a booming economic effect for private enterprise but an adverse and possibly lethal effect on we consumers in the form of bacteria and viral elements infiltrating past a non-existent regulatory process oversight. I use the "free market" example since it seems to be at the forefront of the right wing agenda to inflict a positive for a few at the expense of a devastating negative for the many. Whereas democratic principles are in contradiction since democratic principles underpin the notion that the positive is sought for the many, not just for the few.  

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Maintaining the illusion (#1237)

We are a nation of conflicted idealists instead of being a nation of pragmatists. Logic would dictate that we learn from our experiences and apply that knowledge to our foundations, yet we Americans can't seem to learn from our past experiences and put those conclusions to work. What is at work here is not the priority of logic but something far more unproductive, our unnatural need to protect that which we propound as truth at all costs. Our society's immaturity when it comes to individual responsibility for what is right and wrong in our lives is highlighted by our ability to deny reality especially when it concerns our own personal belief system and our economic gambles. Our belief system will turn us from the practice of advancing science and technology in ways to improve our human condition out of some fear that we will lose our souls; and our economic gambles will keep us tied to processes that contradict effective logical conclusions. Simply, we are a nation of demigods who cannot find our nature of humility in admitting and preparing for being wrong about our understandings all the while being afraid of the consequences of our own thoughts and actions. We tend toward rationalizing a psuedo reality as long as it aligns with our individual visions. Where we go amiss though is that we don't just live individual lives, we live correspondingly communal lives that often do not capture the essence of our psuedo individual perspectives. The answer is to prioritize our belief systems and economic justifications to a level far below what reality is offering through knowledge and logic. Belief systems and economic gambling are possibilities within limits, not truths based upon facts known or accepted as omnisciently derived. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

You should choose to be courageous (#1236)

Being courageous is no easy task. Most of us know that by avoiding danger or principled stands we tell ourselves that we can stay out of unpredictable consequences and the bulls-eye of those who have contrary views. For most, being on the sideline of the "game of life" is the best way to stay unnoticed. When we are unnoticed it allows us to move in and around the issues of the day without compromising our other ambitions. I am not saying that at some times in our lives we need take a break from the battle of life to recharge our willpower, but what I am saying is that to take a break most of the time as a strategy to avoid the messy business of taking a stand is disappointing. Fear can be such an overwhelming obstacle to overcome yet if we don't continue to remain sentinel against fear's effect, we lose our perspective for fighting for the things we see as regressive and brutal. Never in my life do I feel so alive as a human being than when I am fighting for the just and honor of what is best about our species. Conversely, never do I feel so ashamed and impotent as when I shy away from doing something about a wrong that my principles are imploring me to stand against. So many of us wish to just coast through life and let others handle the real work of maintaining and growing the best parts of our society, but what will happen instead is that things don't change and actually get worse when most of us decide to forego courage for apathy and complacency. Remember this much about our lives, they are worth living if we are courageous enough to fight for our freedom to determine our destiny otherwise we become just another resource for others to use at their whim.  

Monday, June 18, 2012

There is always a silver lining (#1235)

Such is our human nature to find a way to see the bright side of any situation. We are the most confusable creatures. Other species in nature have less to think about so therefore they are conditioned to respond in typical and predictable manners. Not so for we humans. We have the innate ability to out-think ourselves or even under-think ourselves to our myriad disdains. It is like thought processes are a new toy and must be played with regardless of the consequences. We are so fortunate to have developed a system for thinking about premises and conclusions that have order to them and have a basis in logic. But as with many things here in reality, we often choose not to utilize logic for the many advantages, real or perceived, that we hope to attain. it is like denial in a lot of ways, we chose to ignore the facts and instead go with what we consider our intuition about what is right and wrong. A learned behavior that has established that we are our own sovereigns and as such we create our own reality. Nonsense! We are but a life that exists in the expanse of the Universe and the insignificance of our life is irrefutable. That does not mean that we are not a force in existence to be reckoned with but when we try to dictate terms to an unyielding Universe, we will lose every time. I can never say this enough, we as a species, must remember that humility is our most powerful character trait in learning and discovering our surroundings and what they may mean. I have no preconditions about what life is or will be but what I do know is that despite all the rhetoric and reality of doom and gloom, we are always afforded an optimistic outlook that can find that one sliver of a silver lining.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

A tale of two Fathers (#1234)

This is a story of two fathers, one who could not understand how to live with the life's he was given and the other who saw the discarded life's and took them to his own. A remarkable story of both destructive failure and resurrected success. It starts with a young man who brings into the world a bountiful family, but who cannot adjust his life to fit the proper narrative of being that father to his children or the husband to his wife. The weight of it all spirals in on him and his character does not allow him to survive beyond his own reckless actions. Another tries to fill the void left by the first father but is unsuccessful in bringing love to the now broken family. Enter the second father, a man, still in his prime, who in his heart has found love for the woman and her children in such a way as to sweep the broken family into his life with all that he is. From a single man with few burdens and many opportunities to do whatever he pleases to do about his future, to a man who is now responsible for not only himself but 5 children and a woman who has become the love of his life. A father who directs all of the great promise that is expected of him to become a man who gives all to his new family. No easy task but when love fills your heart, no task is too hard. William Cleveland Hall has become, over the years, the only father I have ever really known and in 47 days, will be celebrating being the husband to my mother and the father of us 8 children for 50 years. As I look back on the time we have spent together as a family, the moments that stick in my memory are the ones where we laughed and enjoyed the fun things we shared together as a family. I am a lucky man who got a second chance at having a father who loves us and who will always be assured of having my eternal love for his reward.   

Saturday, June 16, 2012

What my life could mean (#1233)

I have regrets and sorrows for the way my life has played out but there is still time for me to reconcile those regrets and sorrows by taking some action before my time as a living human being eventually comes to an end. We all have the time necessary to rectify our regrets. We cannot change the facts of them but we can do something to ease the sorrowful feeling we acquire when we make our mistakes. It does not matter what anyone else does, it is about what we do and the choices we make, every one of the choices we make. It takes little effort for a person to be able to admit they are wrong and to do something about it as soon as possible. How I feel inside me is the most important aspect in determining my happiness, if I have wronged then I need to right it in order to recapture any of happiness I had previous to the wrongdoing. I get to do these things for myself and no one else has that kind of control over me, only me. What is so strange now to me is that people actually just accept what the status quo is and don't realize that they can change the status quo by only changing what they choose to do. We are not limited in what can be real in our lives. We have the wherewithal within us to start from recognition and advance to a plan for making whatever is wrong in our lives, right. The sheer force of our will and a determined, virtue inspired, principled character is the right formula. Wherever we find ourselves when we realize we are wrong is where we start. It is never too late to want to change and actually change. From there all we have to do is aim our action toward what could be right in our lives and unleash our efforts upon that direction. The meaning of my life is to learn and grow toward those happy ideals I hold most dear.

Friday, June 15, 2012

The moment we sold our souls (#1232)

Rather depressing isn't it? When we finally decided to give in to temptation and go against our own esteemed principles so that we could "fit in" with others who had done the same thing before us. There is no doubt that every one of us has done this and felt the betrayal of the act. We steeled ourselves with resolve to never do it again, but once we have crossed the line of betrayal, it is easier to do it again. Thus the cycle begins to transform us into the selfish cynics we eventually become out of desperation that takes the place of virtue. Some of us have found our way back to the beginning and have re-established our ties to our long forgotten principles and have experienced a rebirth of sorts. In my own case, I had wasted many years dumbing myself down to protect my place within the illusory society I had built around myself. I numbed my brain and my conviction to disregard what I knew was right about me to instead, fit myself, albeit deep down uncomfortably, into my own chosen dystopian existence. How did I climb out of my self-dug hole? First, I decided I wanted to live instead of wanting to die, yes, it came to that. Next, I quit numbing myself to reality and became a part of it instead. Lastly, I reconnected with my soul, the deep down essence of my being, and reacquainted my initial principles founded in virtue to my life in every way I could. Of course I am human and as such continue the streak we humans have of failing more often than we hope but I never quit trying to do the best I can. The moral here is that after you have sharpened your perspective of what it is like to sell your soul for illusory things, you can recapture it with a will to live.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Protecting the best of who we are (#1231)

Why is it that some cannot understand that we are all here to experience life in the best way we are able to make it? Some think that this is a contest and we are all competitors for some prize. They also think that as the rewards go to the victor, the losses show that most are unworthy of any humble recognition. It is like someone winning a race and then congratulating solely themselves, and ignoring the other race participants. An arrogance of purpose is their vision and it does nothing to exemplify the best of what our human natures reflect. That we have to protect the best of who we are from others who are also human is baffling, but does speak to the lesser traits we humans exhibit when we choose to glorify our own person instead of all of us together. The greed of selfishness has it's roots in the dark side of our past history. it is not as if selfish greed has just been invented, unfortunately it has been passed down for generations and has become ingrained into our economic and political processes. Rooting out selfish greed is what we need to do all the while protecting ourselves from the quasi acceptable outcomes selfish greed creates. The change in how we consciously think and act is not something that will happen overnight, but the process of this important change must begin now as the balance of our civilized gains are increasingly being assaulted with impunity. My argument or better described as a theory, is that we are all of three natures, compassion, curiosity and the will to survive. When these three are denied in any combination then we are left with lesser traits that can become instilled into our way of thinking. We must understand our root natures before we can see what it is that ails us individually, and as a society, so that we can keep from attacking the very things about us that genuinely reflect who we are.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The perpetuity of hope (#1230)

The reason hope exists, is for us to have a concept for changing what is into what could be. If things were perfect for all of us hope would be unnecessary. However, few things here in existence are perfect, therefore hope is an absolute necessity. In fact even more than a necessity, a requirement. I have been on so many sides of hope in my life, anguish over actions that have befallen me and others that have torn hope from my chest with violent upheaval, but I have also had hope flow into me with a sublime moment of happenstance that made me feel that the perfect can exist. I am constantly living within these two extremes and most of my experiences are either dashed hopes or a glimmer of possible hopes. I resign to myself the fact that few of my hopes will ever come into being, yet I continue to keep the vigil for them regardless. Possibly a character trait I have allowed myself but I know I can survive disappointment so why not keep hoping for the best. It hasn't destroyed me yet not having my hopes come into fruition. I get to choose which outlook I want for me, and remaining optimistic has served me well and much better than being cynical and pessimistic. Yes, I have lived in the world of cynicism and pessimism. Such a constant, hopeless and discouraging frame of mind. My frame of mind belongs to me and no one else and as such I shall choose which frame of mind to guide the rest of my life with. I am the final arbiter of what I think our world could be, and with actions, I continue to hope for that thought of mine to exist for the remainder of my life.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

When will we treat each of us as valuable? (#1229)

stubbornness is not a virtue, standing behind principles of enduring struggle to right a wrong is virtuous. Do some of us actually understand what we are fighting to preserve or to bring about? I write this blog post in order to get at what it is about we humans that should be our purpose for life. Once we understand what and who we are then we can set a course for our's and our children's future. Simple concept with a simple explanation. We are free human beings who have the care and wonder for the animate and inanimate as we understand our existence. We also fight like nothing else to stay alive. That is it! Everything else one might consider us to be is due to the denial of care, wonder and survival in some form or another. The purity of our species exists below the surface of what we have become and changing the who, what, where, when, why and how we become this present representation of humanity should be the foundational accomplishment we strive for well before we begin to assess our futures. I do not live in a dream world. I know that all of us, yes each and every one of us has the purity of our species within us. How to unlock that and keep it in the realm of natural reality is our dilemma. I pose this to those who presuppose that an enlightened being deposited us here and has an afterlife ready to go for us, for what purpose? Should we not have the specialness of our natures in the forefront of our existence? Do we need to be less than who we are when we have the choice to decide that very concept? When will we treat each of us as in the same manner we would want to be treated?

Monday, June 11, 2012

What do you want from life? (#1228)

We are born into this existence with rules in place that affect what we do with our lives. Some of us are born into societies that allow us greater freedom and information and others are born into varying degrees of lesser freedoms and information gathering. However, we are all just human beings, none any more or less important than anyone else. Yet our different societies inculcate us with ideas based in greed and selfishness that sway us from the truth of what life could be to an acceptance of an ideal of "me first". What I am getting at here is I only get to live this life as Carl one time. What do I want to do with my life? There are so many things I wish to do. For one thing I want to see as much of the planet Earth as possible. I want to experience the cultures of all the different people's we have here. I want to know more about knowledge as it has most accurately been recorded. I want to learn new discoveries as they relate to our species and the Universe we dwell in. I want to grow and maintain relationships with as many people as possible and even find an intimacy that fulfills my soul. I can do many things that have the simple pleasures of life at their core. Swimming in the ocean, hiking in the wilderness, exploring the caves below the Earth's surface. Riding a bike, learning to play a musical instrument or even gazing at the stars. I want to do as much as is curious in my life about the environment I live in and if possible maybe even leave the Earth for some short trip out into space. I want what many want and that some of us can do most of these things is a step in the right direction, again though, most of us cannot and more than half of our world just struggles to eat and survive the hostilities of the aforementioned greed and selfishness.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

The giving of oneself (#1227)

Just like most things we experience in our lives, how we react is up to us. No doubt most of us follow familiar patterns with the ensuing predictable results. However, when we start from the point of not putting ourselves first in all the things we enjoin, we can find that results, more often than not, are as pleasantly unpredictable as any new discovery. I cannot hammer this point home hard enough, getting out of selfishness is the best remedy for those of us who wish to have happiness in our lives. What is the greatest value one searches for in their lifetime? Is it power and wealth and all the recognition that those could bring? Not many achieve power and wealth with positive recognition. The elusive true happiness in our lives only comes about when we feel the happiness in our souls; not in our pocketbooks or our ego's control over others. Our individual worlds are shattered when we have lived a life of illusion and then come to realize that all we ever wanted to do was to be loved as well as love back. My blog is all about what makes us the best of who we are and less about the failures in our civilization. But the contrast is indeed needed to be written about because there is no way to explain perspective without having the juxtaposition of the two. I am human and as such I mostly fail in my meager attempts to write about how we can live, given our natures, instead of how we do live given our stubborn individual authority to dismiss logic when it does not align with our wants and desires. The premise of starting from the same place is how I perceive all of us. We are human and have human natures. These natures have been distorted by structural paradigms and that leads us away from the true natures of what we are. Until we realize that by giving of ourselves to others is our best and most true path to happiness, we will continue to destroy the best hope we have for advancing our species into our better and best future.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Inside the looking glass (#1226)

If my instincts are right it appears to me that most people do live inside the looking glass. Where nothing really makes sense except that which is right in front of us. Where the big picture or the overview of life is non-existent. A day to day living that only supposes it's reality through the generated perspectives of others. It would be so fortunate for our species if everyone would take the time to read a portion of the the book called "The Republic", written by Plato. The portion I am referencing is called the "Allegory of the Cave". In it is a story of a person who is aware of their encompassed surroundings but questions the surroundings for more. Our subject does eventually climb out of the limited acceptable reality and is rewarded with discovering a new surrounding that housed the older acceptable one. The moral of the story is to question that which is, in order to discover that which hasn't been learned yet. "The Allegory of the Cave" gave me the first real link to my inner self and the curiosity that has always been bubbling just below the surface of my previous, illusory acceptable understanding. I was awakened anew and and given enough knowledge about my world to start to question every acceptable thought and action I previously held. I am an adventurous soul and my life is now focused on that and all that can be gained from it. I do not live in a static state where my every thought and act can be calculated. I am an enigma because I dare to think that my life is about discovery not just acceptance. I not only understand what it is like to live inside the looking glass, but to also understand what it is like to live outside it as well.

Friday, June 8, 2012

An honest look in the mirror (#1225)

When it stops being about each of us first, then we will start living up to our belief that we are benevolent. The truth is we each still put ourselves first in the quiet of our mind and then into action. We may say we are philanthropists to the outside world but most of us just do that for show. Our hearts need an overhaul and until that happens, we are just lying to ourselves. How can we get a "heart overhaul"? Simply by letting go of the thought that we deserve anything at all. We are not "due" one iota of anything! We all have dreams and hopes of what could be and what should be, however, we are not "owed" these dreams or hopes. At some point in our future, that is if we survive past our own wanton egos, we may indeed begin to have what we could and should have, but presently we are all still in the illogical scrambling mode of greedy selfishness. Trapped by the thought that if we don't look out for number one (ourselves) then no one else will. That is wrong! When we focus on others then things can happen for us. We humans are a caring people and when we see care given to others in an unselfish manner, it inspires us to return that care. Now I know the cynics would smile and say, aha, another sucker doomed to disappointment. What the cynic doesn't understand is that it is in the caring where we find satisfaction, not in the acquiring of materials and vanity at any cost. The real purpose in life is finding happiness and when happiness is found in the simple act of being a benevolent soul, who is really the sucker? We cannot live two contrarily different lives at the same time and apply one set of honorable principles to it and expect it to be honest, which is what is revealed when we honestly look into the mirror.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Connecting the dots... (#1224)

Everything works together in some form of symmetry. Nothing is just by itself, a stand alone, without being a part of something else. The world is a confusing place and it is difficult to to put all the chaotic pieces of the puzzle together unless one has some kind of a plan or map as to how things work. This is why I have spent the latter half of my life learning the nuances of not only process of policy for our civil society but also, and even more importantly, the psychology of why we do what we do. The motive or intent of thought and action are more important to me than the actual outcome of ideas. The "why" of a consideration is more vital than the "how" of the consideration. All of this is to point out that I can now see how most all the pieces come together, not so much structurally, but with the intended purpose. A pattern emerges that reflects the intent of the organization or group as to it's ultimate objective through their introducing public policies that have little benefit to most but much benefit to some. Once a path of purpose has been determined by an entity, it is rare that they would divert from it. Regardless of how enticing their rhetoric may be, they are, in my mind, only focused on an end result that does not bode well for those who disagree with them. That's the problem, I may disagree with objectively neutral ideas in the public domain, but generally, they benefit all, not just some, and I respect that. However, there is little to be confused, and much to object about, when you can discern the intent of suspicious and detrimental policy. We are a democracy and as such if we are not all included in policy, that generally affects us all, then we are not a democracy. We want a better world but not at the expense of those who we would consciously/unconsciously exclude, do we?

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

This era of human existence (#1223)

I am sure that we all think we are living in the most special of times as to the history of our species and that we are, in the most present of time, the tip of the sword of human life. We are the latest and most knowledgeable of the evolution of human existence and therefore we are the best of what humanity has to offer to date. It is difficult to argue with the concept that intelligence, knowledge,  progress and modernization have refined and honed our species to it's greatest capabilities yet. However, an inverse argument can be made. For all the enlightenment most of us share, we still seem to be talking right past each other, even when we have the same ultimate goals. Instead of educating each other with the premise that we can be a better society we instead debase each other and resort to brutish and cruel responses out of being ignorant to having a clear and hopeful perspective. Our species has come to have the good and the bad within us and we struggle at times with separating the two into distinct and recognizable opposing traits. Some see aggressive thoughts and actions as positive when the goal is to force thought and action upon others. Not so much a "coming together of the minds", as "I demand" that all of us do a thing. Alternatively, some see logic as the foundation for explanation and agreement, which allows for free will choice of all of us to do something not through force. How we get to "doing a thing" is important because we all decide together and it is in a real sense all of us who are deciding. Our civilization is on the brink of just such a breakthrough, but only when each human being is regarded as greater than the ideas and concepts that are just thoughts. When we realize that our species is still just in it's infancy of mature thought and action, we will then have the wherewithall to try just a little bit harder to make the next era of human development more clearly desirable and the best of what human existence will be.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Maintaining an optimistic viewpoint (#1222)

I have to keep reminding myself that I am fortunate to be born into a society that has a rich tradition of striving for virtuous endeavors. Our society's history has been one of struggle to attain better ways of life and the result has been pretty remarkable. There are many more who are born into society's where their citizens and their governments don't regard human life with as much dearness as we do here in America. There is always room for improvement here in America but overall I am fortunate. As to maintaining my optimism, I feel an obligation to have the brightest vision of what life could be as a consideration for all that I have been given. I was not owed nor do I deserve any of what I have been given. It is up to me however to rationalize that concept into thought and action. Any advances I have made here in society have been from the struggle of our forefathers and foremothers who made our current way of life possible and in doing so have given me their shoulders to stand upon. I do nothing of what I have done without them and their sacrifices. Despite the fact that many in our society today do not recognize that without the past, they themselves are of little significance, much like myself. It is so important to understand a humility about what any of us has achieved but when we do realize our own fortunate achievements have been directly linked to those before us it is then that we can see the world as a bright and shiny place that needs our continued work to maintain it and improve upon it. Optimism is how we begin!

Monday, June 4, 2012

The struggle toward Enlightenment (#1221)

What is it within me that strives to want our species to be the best of what is possible? I know it comes from my optimism but what is it that forms my thinking? I will try to flesh it out here and now. All of my motivation stems from my will or need to survive, but my survival instinct is not enough to make me want the best for all of us. Something else is in play. For me, my curiosity about life and our environment is key. That I want to know all that I can relative to what piques my interest is somehow related but still not enough to explain why I want something greater than what we already have. My care for the things I know in existence speaks to me in a way that highlights the possible. I care for others and things as much as I care for myself. I realize that I am just one among many who has the same concepts and attachments that make me feel responsible for bettering our world. I can only imagine this impetus toward a better and best world comes from all of my being. My survival instinct, my curiosity about all of existence and my caring compassion for our species and other species' as well. There is no "only one place" where my optimism for life dwells, it is instilled in every fiber of my DNA. As such, I am left with only one true option for feeding my optimistic appetite, to explore the Universe of ideas and knowledge for the most knowable enlightenment. To do this I must become aware of the logical distinctions between facts and opinions/theories and openly objective truths about all questions concerning all matters. I cannot rest in the thinking sphere when so much is yet to be learned and known. It is who I am and me being me is what I do best.  

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Responsibility forces us to think (#1220)

Individually, when we are given the opportunity to decide our own futures and destiny's it allows us to be critical thinkers. When we have decisions already pre-planned for us then we bypass critical thinking and just follow direction. Following direction in the military is good, in normal life, not so much. How are we ever going to advance as a society if we don't make our citizens individually responsible for the choices they make and the results that come about? I was talking with a friend this morning on Facebook chat about how I feel about abortion. I think it should be legal but I would hope that it is an option that is never employed. Still, we must be given the right to choose, and then when we do choose, we must then own our decision. When the individual personal decisions in life are taken out of our individual personal control, we deny our citizens the right of passage from situations that require our critical thinking, to citizens who are merely wards of the state without an input into individual thought and maturity. When I am responsible for my actions and thoughts, I own them with a greater respect and dignity. When I am not the final arbiter of my actions, I am less likely to honor my actions and thoughts. We need to grow and mature as a society and allowing ourselves to be accountable to our own individual personal actions and thoughts is how that achieves the necessary perspective for a little wisdom to begin to establish itself in our lives. There are many areas where the state has the duty to establish guidelines for our behavior, however, individual decisions, that are of a personal nature, as well as mind and gut wrenching, should be left to each individual to make. Own our choices, right or wrong, and let the results fall on the person who is responsible for it.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Will our courage overcome our fears? (#1219)

I am not going to give into fear because I am afraid to die. Actually, I would consider being afraid in order to save my own butt, but I am not going to act on it. I have crossed that bridge and to live with myself knowing I quit being courageous in favor of being afraid would be a living hell. I would rather be gone from existence than to exist as a weakling dependent upon fear. I know that life is sacred and saving ourselves is a natural instinct. However, there are some instances where if life cannot be lived with a freedom or right to exist equal to all others then putting myself in jeopardy of death is appropriate to me. When I was young and still learning what life was all about, I did feign ignorance about fear. I told myself that it is okay to let my principles be compromised in order to fight another day. In some cases this is wisdom in action and in some other cases it was just an excuse for not being courageous about my point of view. Being afraid and locked down in fear is a real physical experience and it can make for an  insurmountable obstacle to overcome. However, fear is nothing new and just because it saps our strength in short intervals, it can be defeated. I know this because I have had that locked down fear infiltrate every cell of my body, yet I made my mouth move to let out the words that defied the fear and moved my body despite the weakening feeling fear had me gripped in. I found that fighting back against fear is the first step toward finding my courage. Now my courage has life and I am not afraid that I may put myself in harm's way, I can live with the result, even if it takes my life away.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Focusing on the light at the end of the tunnel (#1218)

When the noise of life gets so unbearable that I start to question my own strengths, I pause and remember that it is during the hard and difficult times that I am needed the most to exhibit my strengths. Just when the crushing feeling of inevitability starts to worm it's way into my soul, I can see the little bit of light that is far off but shining brightly. It is like that with me today, when the absurd of our society gets to shake it's bony repulsive finger in my face and say I told you so! Well, you didn't tell me so you bony finger-shaking heathen, all you did was lie and and destroy those things that are good. Well, that re-invigorates me to pump out my chest and begin to form the argument that is needed to clearly describe the failings of those who manipulate and lie for greed. I will not sit idly by and allow those who would cause pain and suffering to so many without an effort to stop it. I just need to focus on the little light at the end of the tunnel and realize that my fighting back will somehow make that light a little larger and closer to becoming full on. I am also mindful that just when it seems darkest only means that I am just around the corner from my hope if I don't quit on myself. Everything worthy in life has been fought hard for, a price has been dearly paid. I am no exception and quitting is not a part of who I am. I am a human being who sees the future of our species in exceptional ways and that is the impetus to my motivation. I achieve many things with this one little concept, focusing on the one thing that is most important to me, the light at the end of the tunnel.