Friday, August 31, 2012

The absurdity of elitism (#1309)

What we all share in common is that we care and we wonder. Two dynamic traits that the human being species displays in immeasurable amounts. We all are capable of expressing these two instincts at a moments notice based upon our inherent evolution over time. What we are also capable of is morphing our natures to fit self based concepts. We have learned over time how to manipulate our best intentions to reflect our worst thoughts and actions within strategies deployed to favor our personal agendas. Such is the magnificence of the human mind, a creative force for good as well as a destructive force for some form of short cut advantage. What supports the creative force for good is the ideal that equality exists in a real and functional way. What supports the destructive force for some form of short cut advantage is the concept that there are divisions within humanity that are not applicable to equality. Such is the classification of elitism. Elitism has generally been a term used to describe unnatural differences within our species. In this generic form of the definition, it would seem like a term used for a utility of separation based upon intangible components. Further, elitism has been subscribed to an old idea that some are greater than others in ways that are not supported by any true facts. Elitism has become a wedge used to divide our humanity into groupings based upon artificial allowances supported by ideas that have false equivalencies. For example, That one is born into a family of wealth is not a condition of value of one over another based upon inherent qualities, it is instead based upon the luck of the draw with regard to whom is born to whom. As I see it, we are all too similar in most every way for anyone to lay claim to being elite. To me, elitism is just another form of God worship, as applied to humans, demigod if you will, and as such should be confined to the absurd.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Innocence is lost when lying is intentional (#1308)

I can only control one thing about my character and that is whether I tell the truth or not. If all that I think and do in life, of a positive nature, is undermined by me, through deceptive deceit, then I deserve the consequences without contest. If I deliberately create a falsehood and then defend that falsehood, I have wreaked havoc on my character and all my actions previous to the falsehood. I have no laurels to fall back upon when I know in my heart I have done a deliberate wrong for a nefarious reason. Such is the change in me and now the nobility and honor that I choose for myself to live under. I have created a sovereign to me in my character that has a foundation that I cannot go beneath. I love my innocence now. I had previously abandoned it for the pleasures of the world without conscious and truthful conviction. However, I have turned from my ways of indulging my own desires and have now instead found a humility in life that expands my honorable principles for living into a reality for day to day living. I am not yoked to lying as a rule when my advantages are weighed, I do not consider my own welfare as greater in the community of life than any other person's welfare. Certainly I take responsibility for my own care but not at the expense of deceit or intentional misadventure. Guilt and remorse are two of the finest conscious feelings I have come to know in the sense that they are a constant reminder of what life was like when my innocence weighed less than my greed for power and pleasure. I was given a second chance to find my way back to the honorable community of life and as such so can others who find themselves willing to lie at every turn to protect that which they have wrongfully obtained or willfully harmed others through lying to achieve.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Getting older and wiser isn't half bad (#1307)

Beats the alternative of not getting older and wiser :). Anyway, accepting reality and then going about accentuating all the positives attached to it is not half bad. Sure, I cannot move like a Gazelle anymore, well at least in my mind I thought I did, but I can still move with some alacrity. The aches and pains that come with a life, long on daredevil antics and short on common sense, that has left me less physically capable than a more cautious man, is not without it's advantages. I have tasted of my physical abilities' boundaries and had often left nothing to doubt. I pushed myself to the extremes of my limitations and thus have a satisfaction that remorse cannot touch. The benefit for these extreme physical pushes is the reward for my effort. I chose to have a perspective about how I feel at this age based upon what I have achieved in the past. A life well lived sort of thing. As to wisdom being enhanced in my life I can attest that the complexities I perceived when I was younger were just the beginning of the puzzle to life. The twists and turns that are afforded to us through hopes and dreams often and more than not require greater contemplation. The foundation to my thoughts about life have little altered, it is in the processing of those very same foundational principles that has changed. There are no just right or wrongs, good or bad, simple solutions to every problem. We humans are the greatest known entity of complexity that can reason, analyze and conclude. As such the idea that getting wiser as a virtue is common and necessary for all of us.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

The error of ego as the rule (#1306)

The death of humility is certainly not forthcoming yet it is under assault. If ever there was a behavioral trait that clearly defines a path toward an equal and just world it is humility. On the other hand, or the other side of humility is ego, the constant prioritization of self-importance over all other inanimate and animate objects. Two extreme sides of behavior that portend opposite visions for life and our society. What is the genesis for each and why are each of these two extremes conflicted? Ego is defined to capture the greatest strengths one may have about themselves and is deployed through mechanisms that reflect those abilities. Competition, exalted promotion and other forms that gain glorifying recognition from others. Humility is a soft observance to one's principled ideals based in quietly doing for others that which one would appreciate others having done for them. Raising up high community over selfish individualism. To gain an objective perspective on choosing humility over ego, one needs to see above the situations and circumstances of life. One must realize that time tolls for all and not a second longer can we control. Ego, like vain glory, is artificial and presents itself with a cost to others, while humility extracts no cost from others and is a self-satisfying entity that neglects self for the cause of others. A conundrum of sorts, when you give away that which you have to receive a benefit from the giving. The objective perspective is that nothing in life for us individually carries on into death. Yet what we do in life can carry on after our demise. Which will it be? A life lived that disregards what others endure or a life well lived that endures making others' lives a little better?

Monday, August 27, 2012

And the beat goes on... (#1305)

A remarkable reality about we humans is that eventually we have to fall asleep and go "offline" for awhile. When we wake up and return to the conscious, life has changed, even if imperceptibly. We leave consciousness at one point in the timeline and return at another point. Change, it is what life does every second of it's existence. This real outcome should be a rallying point for all of us to realize that nothing has to stay the same. It only stays the same if we want it or need it to. When I wake up I want to be in the same bed I fell asleep in and that is good. Yet, our society, which is continuing to mature by leaps and bounds should not be held back to the same idealism of my bed being the same as when I awoke as when I initially feel asleep. Our foundations for keeping stability are real and necessary as such they should be. I need some things of a personal nature to remain as I left them, but not in the case of how we evolve as a society. I need your and my society to evolve with time and knowledge to a cutting edge degree. I cannot carry forward positions that have become outdated and of no positive utility other than to make some "feel" safe and secure, despite the illogical impositions it places on our enlightened thinking. I am not advocating that some are not in need of protections from fear, but what I am advocating is that we should not be held back from our boldness to discover. The tension between allowing change to be real and the idea that change should be avoided whenever possible is now playing out among us with a surprising ferocity. The stakes could not be any more clear in what direction our species moves toward, our natural inherent impulses or our stayed fear based comfort. 

Sunday, August 26, 2012

A world where we heal, not discard (#1304)

I am in the transition of knowing that I will be losing my little dog sometime in the near future because I cannot afford to help keep her alive. She has some chronic problems that will culminate in her demise but there are known methods available if one can afford them. That is the problem. I use my dog as an example but we humans face the same dilemma as well. Known methods for prolonging and curing our health, but they are priced out of our range for utility. Our system that allows for only a few who can afford such things as maintaining a healthy program does the rest of us a huge disservice. Priorities are most always followed as protocol, however, the loss of my dog is personal to me just as much as the loss of a family member. I feel the loss in a personal way that takes a little bit of my humanity with it. The cynical continuation of an economic system that does not put the life of any species above a bartering system is frustrating and beneath true human contempt. Life on Earth, this finite orb, has been previously calculated to be in a vacuum. We, in our historical past, could not imagine living beyond this planet. Well, times change and so do the possibilities. Life can exist elsewhere, and as such our economic model for sustaining our civilization here on Earth can also change with the times. We just need to prioritize what is truly important about our civilization and then go about the necessary changes to make it so. Competitive greed was a past paradigm of action, however it is no longer viable in an ever increasing world where awareness of reality has over taken the need to manipulate for personal gain. We need each other to get on the same page in order to alleviate more of the suffering and pain that exists today.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Courage is the price we pay for our principles (#1303)

Life is better when we live in courage and not in fear. Think about it, do you want to fight to have what is right or do you want to cower in fear of losing your life if defending what is right is that risk. Either way, life is gambled. I prefer to fight since it does offer me the best chance to survive. Funny how that works. Running and hiding as a strategy is somewhat logical when the ideal is to regroup and fight another day, but not as a philosophy. Standing on firm ground and staring back with uncompromised conviction at our attackers is our best opportunity to put fear in them. if our antagonists see our resolve to fight the they will know that we will not be bullied into inaction. They then must gird their loins with the same courage we reflect and that is not easy to do when we are the ones defending what is right. Not all of us have the will and mindset to do battle, but having that mindset is not a genetic disposition. It is a learned behavior based upon conflicting viewpoints, some backed by noble principle and some backed by ulterior motives of a lesser nature. It is incumbent upon us to decipher which is the true and good and which is the illusion of greedy happenstance. Information and knowledge has never been more critical to our journey and the destiny we create for ourselves. I find that when I know what is right and fight for that right I am often the victor since the wrong has no moral consistency nor foundational strength. If a price is demanded to be paid for being right, then that price is worthy of being paid. In lieu of us all finding common ground to define our actions within honorable principles, we must continue to engage those who are not willing to put others before themselves.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Why we should have fun (#1302)

For those who know me on the Internet, this would seem like a frivolous post. I am in constant attack mode when it comes to politics and the absolute ineptitude surrounding it by some, so me wanting to talk about having fun seems antithetical to the seriousness I attach to my usual posts. Yet, the pursuit of happiness is at the heart of our founding Independence's declaration. The benefit for all our hard work of crafting a society that includes all of us in it's opportunities for nurture and success is happiness. At least the pursuit of it. So what makes you and I happy? For me it is having fun, for the most part, within life regardless of the whirligig of activity surrounding me. I don't need the great imaginings my mind can conjure up in order to be happy. I can just enjoy the moments of my life that don't have critical danger or tragic consequences attached to them.  In creating a society that allows for fun to be a priority, the society we create assumes that we have resolved our petty differences and elevated logically attained practical solutions as a constant default position. Like a motor, when our society is clicking, in time, on all the cylinders, it is running smoothly and that allows us to move our focus to enjoying life more and struggling with ulterior motives of division less. Finding the fun in life and searching for our happiness is not just an optimism that cannot be achieved, it is a reality that all of us should be living. We have the ability to make our world different than it is today, it has always been whether or not we are willing to be the change that we wish for ourselves, our children and their children. I find that attaining fun and happiness is worth fighting for, for our civilization and it's need to reflect the intent of our country's creation.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

There is no honor in being a liar (#1301)

The little lies or omissions of truth we allow in our lives are the catalyst for building a foundation of deceit we eventually find ourselves living. Taking the easy way out at the expense of not doing the difficult work of truth telling can be traced to most all of our dysfunctional behaviors. We do this to ourselves! The little lies about how we are doing or keeping our secrets to the point of denying reality in the face of all evidence. We are human and we do human things, such is the way of our lives, yet we humans have built a mirror around ourselves that tries to reflect back only those things that make us look perfect. We are not perfect and anyone who even for a fleeting thought thinks we are is already doomed to some degree of misery. Illusion, notwithstanding, is false and can only lead to more intricate webs of deceit. I remember as a child I used the art of lying to such a complexity that I finally hit the point of not remembering which lie was the latest and all my little tall tales came tumbling down to my feet. I was exposed as a liar, and at the age of 8 years, it became clear to me that no one, and I mean no one is capable of keeping all the falsehoods going without eventually losing control of the mess they make. In telling the truth, at least the facts are consistent and can be retained to keep the story line a reality, regardless of the situations and circumstances. The shame I remember when caught in my lies as a child is still real to this day. I did not quit telling lies after my nefarious episode as a child but I did not rely on lying as a strategy for living. I have refined my life as I have gotten older to keep any hint of a lie as far from me as possible and that is one reason why honor has been able to exist within me again.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

The "hard" in life (#1300)

I do believe that it is the hard in life that makes us who we are. We need to overcome those things which are difficult in order for us to understand what it is to persevere. A character builder if you will. Yet I am not a firm believer in creating hardships in order to bring this positive perseverance ideal to the fore in our lives. There are enough hurdles and obstacles for us to overcome without artificially making them out of nothing. Reality is it's own creator of obstacles and we should be focused on overcoming real challenges, not human-made ones. We may be individual humans but we are inexorably linked together. Our greatest dynamic is the strength of bond with each other. As such, we need to focus on the things that are real impediments in life and quit the petty nuisances of selfish behavior. We have a time factor within this existence and any time wasted on ego-filled fantasies is time that can never be regained. Power, money and the control they bring are real hindrances to our human abilities. We are processors, not Gods! We are instinctually and physically adept at reason, analysis and conclusion, while gifted with the sensors that feed that paradigm. All of this nonsense we spend time on not using our invaluable skills is that much less time we have of moving our species up the chain of possibilities. I hope we all can agree that our species needs improvement and that improvement should be reflected in how we behave. It takes some vision of what our civilization can be and how we are able to adapt, in order to confront whatever the future holds. In the immediate, we are close to jumping off the Earth rock and inhabiting other orbs in the big mix we call our Universe. The further out and with quickness we can make this leap, the better off our species will be in preserving it's identity. Wasting our time here now on separating ourselves from each other, the further behind we get to actually coming together for our push into both time and space.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Information and knowledge is my addiction (#1299)

I admit that I am a news junkie. I have to have my fix everyday, every hour even every minute. Occasionally I take a small break to absorb what I have learned into my outlook, but a small break it is. Since I was born I have been on a quest to know what all that is around and about me. Like a blind man who can only reach out his arms to touch and know what is about him, I am that way with my mind. There is never going to be a place where I stop and say to myself, you have done well enough Carl, relax and just enjoy the rest of your life. Instead there will be plateaus that I pause at in order to reconfigure my direction of journey and then it is onward with the pressing of my passion. I know that my time is finite. Finite in the sense that I will only be able to learn for a period of time and then I am not going to be able to learn anymore. This, not so much the loss of my life, is what haunts me more. That my mind won't be able to continue to examine and discover those things that are unknown to me. A great tragedy of sorts when I consider that spending a lifetime of curious discovery is rewarded with a loss of it all. Some, who are cynical to doing anything because they surmise that life will end and therefore what is the point if you are going to lose it all anyway. They miss the point of the journey through life and the effect we can have on the next generations of humans who advance what we learned into a future where their learning is built upon our learning. As an optimist, I can only see what is possible and not impossible. That old Star Trek intro that stated "Boldly going where no man has gone before" is my mantra. I do live what I have now and enjoy the fruits of life as they are but for me the change of every minute to the next is another opportunity to expand from what I know to knowing more.  

Monday, August 20, 2012

The truth will set you free! (#1298)

I have tried the dishonest approach, it is uneasy and depressing in that it allows me to escape who I am and to pretend who I am not. I guess I thought acting was my chosen gift. Life is about what we perceive and if we perceive a dog eat dog world we will attempt to fit into that paradigm. The cynic in me has been purged and a new fresh outlook on life has replaced it. I no longer quest after the unattainable but instead live within what I perceive with humility. I will forever be a proponent of humility as a prominent behavioral trait. I deserve nothing and expect nothing. I do wish for things and if they come about then my heart soars, if they do not then I continue my life with the hope that someday some of my wishes and dreams may come true. The old saying of "hope for the best but expect the worst" has a validity to it that somewhat reflects how we all should look at life. Most people look at those who have more and say why not me, which is normal but it must be tempered with how we look at those who have less and thank our fortunes that we are not so unlucky. Life is not a one-way street, it is a circle in which we all are in the center of the circle. Each of us must venture out in some direction of choice and if we settle upon the attitude that just being alive is a great start then the pitfalls of life really are in the overall, inconsequential. Perspective is the key when trying to think about what our truths represent. Being born into poverty in some backward land where the child death rate exceeds our able will to prevent it should clarify how lucky some of us are not to be those unfortunate little souls. We fail as a species to care and nurture each other in the basic ways so if I don't get the fancy car or the great personal relationship, I can rest assured that my ambitious hopes are a trifle bit beyond my real ability to do something of more important hopefulness.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Heads up, part II (#1297)

Yesterday's post was about me lifting my head just in time to get my top front teeth knocked out in a rock fight as a young boy. Today my post is about how I broke my leg while playing football in the street. I was 16 and had just made my high school basketball team. It was Christmas break and some of the neighbor kids and I were playing football in the street like we normally did. It was getting late and we needed to finish our game quickly. My team was down two touchdowns and since we had the ball and were far from the goal line, I decided to go out for the bomb. In other words I lined up as a receiver and had one of my teammates throw me a long pass. It was working great right up until I had just pulled the long pass onto my fingertips, what I had not noticed was that a car had parked down by our goal line where previously there had not been one. I was focused and concentrating on running a good route and shaking free from my defender and then looking up and back while running full steam into the immovable obstruction. Needless to say, I did not budge the car from it's solitary parking spot, instead just as I left my feet to haul into my hands the long pass, I experienced the sudden rush of incoherency followed by a dull thud. I lay across the hood of our neighbor's station wagon, clutching the ball and then began to slide off the vehicle down the front of it's grill onto my back into the street. My teammate picked the ball off my chest and ran the final five yards past the goal line securing the score, but for me, I was left to semi-consciously gather myself up and begin to walk until the pain was too excruciating. At the hospital I found out that I had cracked my left femur all the way through but luckily the fracture did not dislocate. I spent the next three days in the hospital and finally just did get out to observe the final hours of 1971, before the new year rang in. 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Heads up! (#1296)

This is a true story of how I lost my top two front teeth when I was 8 years old. I don't quite remember who yelled "heads up" but at 8 years old, heads up meant tilt your head up to look up high. I did just that in time to get hit in the face with a combination dirt and rock clod. Us boys were out in a field in the neighborhood and we were squared off against some other neighbor boys. It was mostly just a territorial thing among kids who had not come to know each other yet and back then in the early 60's it was not uncommon for strangers to challenge and defend areas adjacent to our domiciles. It was a lot like how we used to form up neighborhood sports teams and go play against each other at the nearest available park, field and even mostly deserted side streets. In this case us brothers wandered out a little to the border of the next neighborhood and some kids didn't want us to be around. So somehow we began throwing dirtclod/rocks at each other in a way that was not intentionally aimed but lobbed to scare us away. Well, being adventurous boys with some courage, we tossed dirtclods/rocks right back at them. As would have to eventually happen, one of us, me, got unlucky enough to be standing looking down for something to throw when the incoming dirtclod/rock found it's unfortunate target, my face. It hit me in the mouth just as I lifted my head to look at what the heads up was all about. Out came my front top two big permanent buck teeth. I remember being stunned but not so much hurt as wondering what had just happened. My older brother John came over and picked up my knocked out teeth and then we went back to our house to tell our parents. My uncle Eddie comforted me and got the blood from running down my chin and helped me through it all in the moment. The rest of the story is what you would expect, off to the dentist and then to the rest of my life. Tomorrow I will recount how I broke my leg, that should make you laugh :)

Friday, August 17, 2012

It is never too late to educate yourself (#1295)

So things are currently confusing, especially in the arena of politics. I have no advice on matters of the heart :). But on politics and our economy, I do. Here is what you need to start, Read for yourself and stop listening to others for your opinions. I used to listen to others who I thought were smart to get my opinions because I wanted to sound informed. Yet sounding informed is not being informed. There are no geniuses living amongst us who know how everything works. There are just most of us who want good things for us and some of us who could care less about most of us. One thing is fairly easy to observe, that between Democrats and Republicans, there are stark differences. Republicans want to create a society that has little governmental influence in our lives except a strong military. Democrats also want a strong military, just not one that overshadows everything else in life. Democrats also want a bigger government in order to provide services to all of our citizens in ways that improve the quality of life and the quality of opportunity. Republicans see our economic future as a free range scenario where all are allowed to do as they please with only the free market to guide them. Democrats see our economic future as having controls on our enterprises in order to make them efficient, for them to be reasonably productive for profits as well as safe for our citizen's usage. Republicans want to restrict women's rights as they exist today, because they believe women are not capable of determining their own destiny according to Christian belief. Democrats believe women are capable of determining their own destiny based jupon each woman's own belief system. You can start with just some basic information and grow it out from there to give yourself the opportunity to think for yourself and move away from the talking heads who want to think for you. Always check the facts of anyone who promotes them, even mine here.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

What we do to ourselves (#1294)

Innocence is what we are born with and then we spend the rest of our lives losing it. I don't like to dwell on the negative aspects of reality, but I must in order to explain how we lose our innocence. Since the first civilization, we have been attempting to order a society that best reflects safety and security, balanced with freedoms. These are good ideals to have but our attempts to implement equality and fairness to them has been mediocre. Instead of structuring processes that amplify and grow our care for each other and our curiosity for the existence we live within, we instead force ourselves into competitions to highlight our differences. I know we are different, however our differences are what make us more complete on whole as opposed to how we are when we are just individuals devoid of community. Instead of highlighting our differences through competition, win and lose scenarios, we should be examining our differences and prioritizing them to there best utility. We all have something important to offer society, and having a society that recognizes that is the first order of organizing it. As we continue to learn and grow in this existence as humans we must allow ourselves some foundational principles. We are good and full of wonder when we are born, allowing that innocence to nurture and grow should be our one pathway toward maturity. We have allowed ourselves to be compromised in our upbringing to the point of us valuing greed and power over joy and discovery. Our values have been shaped by our present reality and we need to change our present reality in order to get us going into the most optimal characteristics and behaviors our species has been gifted with. It is all within our grasp to formulate and now is always the best time to do it.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Making sense out of the nonsense! (#1293)

This is why I am informed. I cannot allow the disinformation we allow, as a society, to be spread about without consequence. It is I and others who have to make sure the proper consequences come to those who deliver misinformation for their own philosophical and/or financial gain. The one thing that just outright galls me is our national attitude about giving lies the same platform as truths. We purposely allow lies to infiltrate our national conscience on the same level with informative truths. Lies are not equal to truths nor should lies be given the same exalted status as truths. The general argument is that we wouldn't want to restrict free speech in any way. However, the argument fails to account for the irreparable damage done to those who trust that the lies are really the truth. There no doubt as to why our American society is at loggerheads with each other. Some accept lies as truth and others accept truth as truth. The ability to critically think, each for ourselves individually, is the only way to combat the effects of lies, in lieu of making the telling of lies a justified punishable offense. A truth squad to objectively determine, through logically determined proof, that lies are lies and therefore a criminal offense. If no penalty is attached to whether someone disseminates lies as truth then we will always have those in our society who will use lies to gain advantages for themselves while setting back any meaningful societal progress. Until that day when we, as a society, begin to establish guidelines and laws to combat the heretofore free enterprise of gain from lies, we have only ourselves and the knowledge we build within us, to protect and admonish lies when they enter our conscious awareness.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Newton's law of motion (#1292)

One of Sir Isaac Newton's laws of motion, (paraphrased) {for every action there is an inversely proportional equal reaction} also correspondingly compares to our own personal egoistic calculations turned into action. When we loose our own importance on the world, in the form of activities that positively benefit ourselves, it is then felt by someone else in a negative way. The cost/benefit analysis is an appropriate functioning model of what happens when we prescribe to ourselves greater, than the moderation we ought to have. The concept of unfettered, unshackled, unabridged desire with boundless possibilities, has at it's core a thought process or mindset, that places oneself as immune to reality and consequence. I am all for liberty to be free from the constraints of thought, but not from the consequences of a dirty maelstrom of egoistic thoughts placed into action. There is a price, as in the model of cost/benefit analysis. Nothing is inconsequential or separate from the opposing reaction, any action has produced. There is always a cost to whatever ego's machinations can devise. Some may say, well and good! But I say well and not so good if the thought leads to action that creates unequal benefits for some and devastating costs for others. We, as a species and civilized humanity, have had enough of the manipulations of one over the other to convincingly know the value of whether a cost/benefit is appropriate. When considerations are evaluated to secure a positive from a negative then the calculations of action through inversely proportional reactions can be acceptable. However, the best of what we do together is the defining feature, as opposed to the worst we can do apart. When we can agree that the inverse reaction to an action is less negative and the initial action therefore becomes a greater positive, then we have used Newton's law of motion to our species' greater advantage.

Monday, August 13, 2012

To whom do we owe a duty? (#1291)`

To each other of course! Yet we seem to be at loggerheads when deciding to actually pay the duty we owe. I bring to your consideration the current situation in Syria. A country that has been under the influence of oppression and cruelty. Yet when the uprising of it's citizens in the face of the overwhelming brutality by it's dictatorial oppressor evidences itself, we stand by and do nothing much more than watch. As if our record of what is happening is the extent of our duty. America, founded upon the ideal of liberty and freedom, is now relegated to watching as others who also fight for those same rights are slaughtered for their convictions. We must remember that if France had not joined in our struggle for overthrowing our oppressors, we would not be "America" as we know it today. For us to wring our hands while bloodshed continues to oppress those who are oppressed is antithetical to not only our political structure, but also to our fundamental human nature to defend the weak and oppressed from tyranny and inhumane degradation. This is a turning point in our grand experiment here in America, do we stand up for the rights we demand for ourselves, when others are dying to achieve them as well? If we do not stand against those that oppress, then we will surely see a diminution of our rights here since they will have been hollow, when their defense has been tested. There will always be those who wish for our society to revert to some form of rule by ego, by not defending the obvious circumstances, directly related to our own founding, we begin the slide down the slippery slope of losing all that we had gained to achieve in equality, fairness, freedom, justice and liberty. Our only defense here in America of our own vision of our democracy, is our willingness to fight for others who wish the same regardless of where the oppression on Earth is happening.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

The unknown is our motivation (#1290)

The unknown is not a scary thing like it has been portrayed in the past and even now in the present. I yearn to learn more about what I don't know and those who would stop me or put up barriers in front of me are out of touch with what it is to be a member of the species, human being. I am a biological data processing entity. It is what I live for and the reason I am in a constant motion of change and evaluation of my surroundings. We, as a society, continue to refine and create new tools to satisfy our curiosity, in order to fulfill the genesis of our own evolution. The want, and yes, even the need to know is within all of us. Some to a greater degree than others but none of us is immune to our own curious nature. How we view our nature to know, has been dependent upon on the individual enculturation to which we have been exposed. Our society has not achieved a consensus on the reasoning, analysis and conclusion of our instincts in basic terms sufficient to offer all of us the ideal that what we think and act upon should come from basic foundational human nature. We instead are shied away from our instinctual natures of compassion and curiosity toward calculated equations more in line with economic theory and mythology. I have settled upon our natures as being positive and continual, whereas others see our natures as dark and negative. For me, the dark and negative evidence only comes about when the continual positiveness of our natures are/is being thwarted and/or denied. When we are settled into who we are as a species, is when the contrast of the unknown as opposed to the known becomes indistinguishable. Knowing and not knowing are just a string of events that are being played out or will be played out, nonetheless as our species continues to evolve into our future the more we know simultaneously becomes the less we don't know.   

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Brutal political philosophies, Leviathan. The Prince and The Republic (#1289)

In our fairly recent ancient history, Hobbes and Machiavelli,  400 years ago and more, and Plato 2300 years ago, political philosophies were written by thinkers to reflect the ideal of elitism. Whether through commission by kings or, in Plato's case idealism based upon superiority, the outcome of their political philosophies have left us with a society that is judged by the subjective merit of these incomplete rationales. All three of these political philosophies hinge upon control of the masses and the way to do that is prescribed through oppression and the trickery of lies. It seems that power in the hands of few relegates the worst of human behavior to the fore. We have had examples of the correct definition of political philosophies through such recent humans as Ghandi and Martin Luther King, yet the lessons learned from our two giant equivocators of peace and equality are not falling on most of the ears of those who continue under the addiction that power seems to purvey. The inaccurate assumption that people of our age are in need of control to the point of oppression is stilted and archaic. We are a curious people who have embraced enlightenment where offered and our society needs to reflect the principles of enlightenment, not oppressive control. Yet here now in our 21st century we continue to reach back into the past for answers to our future when the answers to our future rest squarely on our own compassion and insatiable curiosity. Life is so simple now that the veil has been raised and understanding of our existence can be quantified. We have the tools to unravel the mysteries that envelope us and not only that we have the boldness and the courage to explore that which up until now has been out of our reach. The era of brutality and lying as controls is gone and the new era of understanding and seeking new horizons is at our threshold. We now only need to take the step forward to cross it!

Friday, August 10, 2012

The high road is the only good road (#1288)

If you ever wonder why it is so that when you do what is right and good you feel right and good, then you have found the little secret to having happiness front and center in your life. I don't have a lot of things I know would make me more happy but what I do have is the threshold of happiness because I want and will continue to take the high road in life. I don't live in revenge, regret or other negative thoughts and actions. Of course I do learn from my mistakes and apologize with sincerity for my mistakes, but I don't allow those things that are not of a positive nature to infiltrate my way of life. When a job needs done then it needs done right. When the truth needs to be told then the truth is acknowledged. I don't seek out shortcuts to make my responsibilities less mine and more someone else's. Instead, I embrace those things that fall to me and accept my duty to exemplify the qualities I have found to be the most human and most honorable. I have a concrete understanding of what it is to be human; curious and compassionate with a will to survive. By starting from this foundation, I flush out the best of what being curious and compassionate can be. I can only do that by taking the high road in life. There is plenty there in defining what the high road looks like to keep me busy for the rest of my life and anything else is "much ado about nothing". One very important lesson I have learned over time is that I cannot control much of anything outside my own self. Once I figured that out life has been a marvelous adventure in the scope of me and the choices I can make. The high road, or more clearly, doing what is right despite all the other alternatives out there, has been what has made me the man I am. Someone who is self-assured, takes pleasure in the little things in life, and brought out the self confidence that I had buried oh so long ago. Life makes sense on the high road!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Respect is an earned value. (#1287)

The thought that if someone has a forum or platform to promote their point of view automatically qualifies them to be respected is common. I hear many people on the radio and television making intentionally dishonest comments about the events of our day, and yet they continue to get listeners who believe or hang on to their every word as if they are infallible. In some respects, it is a sad commentary on our culture that just because these "talking heads" can be on the radio or television, they automatically should be given respect beyond our own ability to reason for ourselves. Certainly we are a culture that roots for it's home teams in sports and somehow we have equated the same to our political philosophies to the point of excluding logic as a quantifier. When I listen to someone who has a point of view, I filter what they say through my own increasing knowledge base along with the intent of their argument. If I am still unsure, I then dig into legitimate references and citations of fact and policy to verify the points the speaker of whom their point I am considering. If I find a pattern of sensationalism or disinformation, I disqualify these speakers of opinions as having ulterior motives not conducive to my continued understanding of the real issues that need real solutions. I will not be side-tracked by individuals who have an agenda antithetical to objectivity and logical purposeful progress. Neither should anyone else. In some disturbing ways it seems we have delegated our own duty to inform ourselves through diligent research, to others, through convenience. If I parrot what I hear as a strategy to show that I am informed, I have essentially abdicated my intelligence to someone else without fully knowing what I have done. Willingly giving the most precious curious nature I have to someone else so that I don't have to understand what is happening around me. Can you see why I am disturbed by this trend?

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Family and community are necessary (#1286)

We cannot and should not even try to live in a vacuum. We cannot sustain ourselves at the elementary level of life without some human connections and relationships. We need each other and that should be indisputable. That conclusion should then trigger a thought about how we would like to see each other exist. What kind of human being are we? Do we see a happy world that gives more than it takes? Or do we see a brutish world where life has to be a conquest over one another. Most of us live somewhere in between and that is our current dilemma. The tension between these two visions is the current struggle we are involved in. For me, there is no doubt as to which vision for our society we should be practicing. I have always been a big fan of happiness and having other happy people to share that happiness with is my kind of reality. I know the feelings of negativity and they hurt my soul. When I see the poverty and oppression of souls it strains my heart in a real and powerfully depressing way. Life should not have such circumstances and situations when it is within our power, as able human beings, to work at and achieve foundational processes for awareness and opportunity. For those of us who know what life should be like, we have a duty to our own principles and to those who need our advocacy. We have to push ourselves to make a difference and call out our vision when it is being thwarted or denied. Our people are in need of basic understandings and creating the pleasant opportunities for them to achieve their own significance should be part of our hope for happiness for all.     

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Integrity, and it's price (#1285)

Nothing is for free, well except the air we breathe and that is slowly being contaminated so that it's free usage does have an increasingly corollary price. How we act though is free if we are determined to have integrity in our lives. None of us are who we were just a little while back into our past. We all change over time. Given that there are no legitimate arguments to us changing over time, we have the ability to calibrate our personal convictions and principles to reflect the ever-increasing information we are constantly receiving. Integrity is no different. When I was younger, I had less integrity about the things I could not understand, and over time I updated my integrity through becoming aware. I know this about myself, I am not an evil or bad person. I have done evil and bad things but not because that was my intent, it was because I was not informed about the repercussions of my aberrant behavior. All of us are susceptible to ignorance and it's consequences. If anything, the lack of some form of proper teaching and access to information has been the catalyst for many to have lost their way in the sphere of living up to their own expectations of themselves. Integrity has a price and it is paid for in the arena of knowledge. The more we know the more we can choose to live as we are best equipped to reason, analyze and conclude. Choices, which are calculated through what we know and how we represent our own principled convictions. Integrity is only one process we must apply to our actions, others which have to do with what we find in life as our purpose, serve to greater extent, our will to accomplish and the inherent search for happiness. Life is not a mundane drudgery, created to exist without value, it is instead a thrilling opportunity to invest in oneself the best of who we are and the best of what we can be.

Monday, August 6, 2012

Love always finds a way (#1284)

I am no different than anyone else when it comes to evaluating whether a relationship can work or not. For me, first and foremost is the attraction factor. Do we both have an irresistible urge to be close to each other. If not, then the likelihood of an intimate relationship working out for me is zero. If the attraction is not coming from both than neither will a foundation be built. That is just the beginning however. From there we all go different ways in calculating whether a relationship will be successful. There are factors such as compatibility, economics, belief systems and other thoughtful tendencies that define what we see as our present and future. I am no expert at this relationship gig, my parents are a better example due to them recently celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary, as an example. I, on the other hand, have not even been married once yet, and I am well into middle age. yet, I know why I haven't found the woman I have searched my whole life for. The reason is certainly not due to them being unattractive, but instead it is the other factors I have already described. In some way the ones I have had relationships with that started out with real possibilities, faltered due to some inability on my part to ameliorate myself in such behavioral ways necessary for both of us to continue to weigh our relationship as worthy. I have had to learn the hard way that despite the love that is felt, love without the proper action behind it to reflect it, has no hope. But like all things that come in the form of emotional pain, the hard lessons can be learned from and hope reminds me that love, when given and received with humility and consistency, makes areas necessary for compromise always the best option. Trial and error had been my guide because I refused to accept humility as my behavior. Lesson learned, and the hope that my next attempt to build a relationship will culminate in it being a successful one.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Forward thinking (#1283)

Creating a vision to reach toward. It all starts with each individual having the confidence in their own  goodness to want to see a reflection of it applied to how our future society should form. It has been a little more than a couple of centuries since our country has come into being with many great advances having been made, yet more are needed since we are a country that has yet to find a way to implement a society that truly has equality and fairness at it's core. I am not under any illusion that "a more perfect union" will come about with little effort, on the contrary, much effort and many sacrifices will have to made for us to continue our trend toward a more perfect society. None of us are eager to have to make sacrifices in our lives that seem unfair, however, that will be the only way for us to create a future that represents the ideal that our species must continue to evolve in all ways that give us the maximum capability to live within, understand and explore our existence. We have always been at our best when we work to make life better. That is a fact that runs through the thread of the total human experience. So for each and everyone of us it is important that we develop a picture in our minds of what the future should be. Like our fore-parents who gave from their right to all the happiness they could have had, we also have the same duty to give to our children. We may not achieve what we think is the best future but we must try if it is a worthy expression. I don't necessarily spend as much time in the future as I ought, it seems that most of my real life time is spent in the present and reflecting on the past. Those are helpful to me and how I live my life but there is more to just living my life than what happens to me. I am a human being and nothing will ever change that. Not even the death of me will change that I have been part of the greatest living species known. So what I do while I am alive and what I leave after I am dead are both just as valuable to me.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Live it more and talk it less (#1282)

Everyone should put their principles on display through action, not just through words. The abstraction of thought as real is less valuable than the actual process of defining your life through real actions. I have found that words are insufficient to reflect real value in life. It is easy to use words to explain how to live but the real and lasting value of principles is in the living of them. A man or woman of few words often are the ones who exemplify the characteristics that instill the highest level of a truly quality life. Those who don't spend their time telling us how to live but instead quietly go about the living of their life with little fanfare, are more than likely, ones who have found that being their principles is more important than telling others to be their principles. I have found that in my own life where I felt the obsession to explain my point of view on core principles as a necessity. What I have learned is that a stubborn individualism for most is strongest when others attempt to reshape it. There are many out there who need to find their core but by trying to force them into a way to find it is more troublesome than just letting them see it in action. As much as I wish a happy life for everyone, I cannot be the noise they hear that tries to tell them where answers may be. I have to live my life like it has the value it really does have and quit worrying about how others think. My life is defined by what I do and doing what I do on a consistent basis is my task. I am only me and others are only themselves, and in that I find the peace that takes me through life. I get to be me without me trying to be them. I get to live my life with the happiness it brings and if ever anyone asks me how I do it then I can try to tell them about putting my values to action before anything else. 

Friday, August 3, 2012

The will to live (#1281)

Despite whatever is thrown at me I have not given in to any temptation to not live. One of the greatest traits within me is to fight and survive with everything I have to remain alive. I am just not predisposed to quitting on my one time life, regardless of how it's destiny is written. I have control over one thing and that is how I think about what my next moment will be like. Granted that some things have some influence, yet they are not the ultimate deciding factors of who I am or what choice I will make, that will always be up to me. Even being contrary to logic and common sense is my choice when oftentimes I feel like others have maneuvered me into just such situations, however, I have as much given away advantages so as not to be manipulated. That best describes my character. I will cast whatever securities or material gains to the wind if I think I am having my strings pulled as if I were a puppet. I had an older friend who used to say to me that if he had only his underwear on and was on the street with nothing else, he would not only be okay but he would build his life back into something to be proud of. That has always stuck with me, along with one other thing he advised, never take short cuts when all you have to do is the hard work necessary to achieve a goal. Those two things have stuck with me as founding principles, mainly because they reflect my own personal ambitions of never quitting on myself and doing things right. Sometimes all we need in life is for someone we respect to help us in some small way for them, but in a huge way to us. Simple words of conviction and action rigorously applied as a constant, can open up a world of possibilities and pathways to happiness. Notice how I didn't say success? Because happiness is my goal, not being successful at the things that may or may not bring me happiness.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The myth of the human demigod (#1280)

A creature that exist only in the minds of those whose egos have grown larger than their ability to understand reality. It is a phenomenon attributable to those who see the world as their own playground, a world subservient to their whims and by-your-leaves. I bring this subject up because I am so appalled at how some people are convinced that they know what is best and in the hearts of the rest of us. It is interesting that they use power and control to convince us that what they think is far superior to what you and I think. I am all for expressing suggestions and opinions when asked, but not to forcing others to abide their lives by my suggestions or opinions. We all have a free will to experience and in that experiencing we will discover what is just right for our objectively arrived at convictions. I am not a robot who is subservient to some other person whose goal in life is to shape my life. I am a free individual who can form, reason, analyze and conclude my own concepts, without the help of those who would choose to conclude for me. I will not enable those who feel that their destiny in life is to be greater in reality than any of the rest of us. I appreciate a brilliant conversation or debate about the pressing needs of our society and how our behaviors within society are reflected. Certainly, information is power, however, that power must come from our own minds and the ability to think critically is our individual responsibility, as well as our duty to society. It is intolerant for any individual to want to purposely distort information for the sole purpose of advancing their deceptive agenda, because any agenda that relies on misinformation and deception has an ulterior motive written all over it. It always comes back to those whose egos have dominated their behavior in an out-of-balance proportion with their humility. Mental disorders are often reflected in delusions of grandeur and in some, like a demigod mindset, it is simply an extension of that.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

One thin line between courage and cowardice (#1279)

Here's the deal, you will be something, even doing nothing labels you as something, so why not be what, in your guts, you know is right? We live in a society that, for now, allows us to express our viewpoints about our future in ways that can make a difference. Many of us do, but some are just unsure about what they think, therefore they say nothing. Again, nothing is a position and by doing nothing you become a pawn of those who are pushing for something that will affect you. Take a moment out of your life and try to see the big picture about our society. It is not that hard when you look at the visions being offered. One has a vision of survival of the fittest, the current conservative philosophy. The other has a vision of community with individual merit, the current progressive liberal philosophy. If that is all you understood about the nature of what is dividing our country, then the reasoning you and I need to make to decide which is in our best interests becomes that much simpler. Do we want a society where individuals are solely responsible for their life paths without any help; or do we want a society where we help each other, yet give deference to those who merit such consideration based on their work and innovative ethics. Personally, I like the idea of community, it resembles family where help is there to be given and taken, but with accountability. In the individualistic society that relies on the concept of survival of the fittest, there are built in advantages to those who have already achieved. They are not under any conspicuous positive duty to be a part of society that regulates or ordains a set rules to which we must all abide. The consistent behavior of the individualistic society is that it rips from the foundation of our society the democratic pillars, such as equality, fairness and justice upon which our society was founded. Yet that does not seem to bother those who would and do advocate for such destructions.