Sunday, October 3, 2010
I've been doing a lot of soul searching within the last month. I find it odd that the more I feel as if I've got a grip on life the more I find myself thinking about it. The more I question the belief system(s) I cling onto. Whether that be religion, faith, (I view the last two as COMPLETELY separate), morality, relationships, friendships, etc. Anything and everything. I don't view this questioning as a lack of my personal definition as an individual. I don't think that because I'm always searching I lack some sort of qualities that make someone a firm believer in their life choices. Instead, I think it represents fluidity. A lack of dogmatism. I don't want to grow up to be the type of person who is so set in my ways that I shut myself off completely to new ideas and growth. Although that person may feel as if they have it 'figured out,' I think they have simply found their own comfort levels and do not desire to push any further.
I'm not saying contentment with your own personal set of beliefs is wrong. On the contrary, actually. If you stand for something, continue to do so. But don't be so reliant on what others do or think. I believe that too many people nowadays are closed off to anything but what they have accepted to be true. People are too scared to see that maybe there is more than one answer...maybe what works for someone, will not work for another. Many religions claim they have THE answer, and maybe they do. All I'm trying to say here is: just as readily as they might have the answer...they might not. We accept things on faith as true, so all I'm pointing out is that you cannot say you are factually correct and in the right when you are accepting something off the basis of faith. That's the key word: faith. Some things can't be proven, and although that doesn't mean they aren't true, I would hope that would encourage people to stop beating down other belief systems and ways of life. I am growing weary of the divisive (and frequently violent) nature of humanity. If history tells us anything, this division is nothing new. But when has it ever been necessary? Why can't we simply be content with what we believe in, and not have to fight over it with others?
I think the answer to that is fear. People are driven by fear. People are scared of others who are quite unlike themselves. And this fear drives us to be divided, frightened, and even hateful. But we can overcome it. Even if just one person at a time.
I guess the whole point of this rant is for me to encourage others who agree to be open-minded. Being firm with what you believe and being open-minded do not have to be at odds. Accept others, and they will accept you. If you disagree with everything I say, that's not a problem. Doesn't mean you're right. But just because I have an opinion that I'm writing about doesn't mean I am right either. Don't be so hasty to look to others for your own answers. Life is an individual journey....we have lots of help and interactions along the way, but you truly have to find what you believe for yourself.
I firmly believe that in the end, love will always conquer hate. So show some love. This world needs it.
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Sometimes when I write, I really only care if one person reads what I write. That may sound insensitive, but I don't mean it that way. Maybe I'm stuck on a memory...something I can't quite get past yet. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy. Happy for a lot of people wouldn't be an understatement either. But alot of times, I feel as if that one person isn't connecting with me. Isn't understanding what it is I feel is right.She doesn't know how much these thoughts have been on my mind...
But then again...who is worth said affection? Somebody....
But for me, it will be very far in the future. Because life has chosen its path for me. I won't complain. But I can't tell you I won't feel what I do...
I've always cared. You know that. It was never enough, but now it is. I just want you to know....your success in life means everything to me. I want you to thrive. But the normal response is hatred and malice....so am I better? According to my lifestyle, maybe not. But according to pure and true reality, maybe I am. But for you...I (was). past tense. And that pains me....not to know it, but to know that's the truth.
Sometimes I miss the past very dearly. But it is not in our plans to dwell on the past, but instead to dwell on the future. You will always have a future...And you can make it worth remembering.
Friday, July 30, 2010
Well, okay, it hasn't been that extraordinary. In fact, it's been pretty hectic at times...especially at work. But, with a positive attitude, I seem to have made some serious headway. Lately I've been trying a new simple method of looking at things: I stay positive in almost all situations. Seems easier to say than do, I can already agree with that. And it IS easier to say than do. But when you really buckle down, and decide that no matter what you are going to make the best out of every day, you find immense joy. Not in your day-to-day activities, but within yourself. I have just found myself being more happy since I've released my anxieties and worries and fears. No doubt they will come back to me at some point....but I will fight them off the same way! The whole goal here is for me to be happy with whatever I've been given in life, and with whatever situation I am in. Sure, there are PLENTY of things I could find to be unhappy about. In this year ahead of me I will be faced with obstacles that I can't say I'm overly excited to face. But at the same time, there is no need for fear or anxiety. Or worry. Because everything will play out. Everything will be okay. The minute you stop believing that is the minute you've subjected yourself to negative thinking. So don't do it :)
That's all for now folks.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
That's what there is right now. Calm. It's neither invigorating nor disheartening, but at the same time it is peaceful.
The more I sit here to write the more that comes to mind. The more topics I could dive into, the more feelings I could describe. But none of those things seem to matter right now. And I'm okay with that.
Friday, July 16, 2010
There's a few things I'm missing, but I'm not one to complain about the little things. I've been working on new music, which included writing what I think might be my best song to date. Music always keeps me passionate and motivated. It makes me want to succeed in school, so that I'll have a degree to pursue a bachelor's degree-level job in some far away land....Canada, probably ;)
I'm just happy to be alive. I'm happy to know that there is real love on this planet. Humanity caring for itself. Cooperation. Unity.
I will do my best to be a caring human being with everything I do in life. It is very cool to see how everybody's different motivations lead them to different positive outcomes and perhaps even to making changes in somebody(s) lives.
I'm gonna use mine to help people, that's all I know for certain.
And that certainty is comforting..
''Love is real, real is love
Love is feeling, feeling love
Love is wanting to be loved
Love is touch, touch is love
Love is reaching, reaching love
Love is asking to be loved
Love is you
You and me
Love is knowing
we can be
Love is free, free is love
Love is living, living love
Love is needed to be loved'
'Love', -John Lennon
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Sunday, July 4, 2010
I'm happy that the grass in green and the sky is blue. I don't want to get started on another 'life is wonderful' kick, but how can you not sometimes? Even when things don't go your way....you have the right to be happy.
Things haven't always gone my way. One could argue that in times of repeated failures you might be more prone to have a negative outlook. I would have to agree. The more I allowed myself to associate with negativity, the more it associated with my life.
So here I am on a Sunday morning and I can say that today won't be negative. This week won't be either. Because I won't allow either to be. I need an earnest enthusiasm now more than ever...we all start new chapters in life, and it seems I am starting a new one a year earlier than expected. But that's exactly it. We don't expect life. Can't anticipate it.
We just have to live it. And give it our best shot. And that's what I'm gonna do. Day after day after day. Simple philosophy, big results.
Thursday, June 10, 2010
This idea seems contradictory to how I live. I tend to blog about topics and things that are very open-ended. I still believe that we should ponder things from time to time. As someone who is constantly looking for writing inspiration, I still wholeheartedly support that. What I’m referring to is more of the big things in life that we do have some control over, but still can’t seem to control. I spend way too much time thinking about these things, and overanalyzing how a situation might turn out, but it’s not worth it. I’d rather just go out and live and know that no matter WHAT happens there will be a tomorrow. Yes, it is obviously true that we aren’t guaranteed a tomorrow…hence ‘living like there’s no tomorrow’. So there’s a couple different ways to look at it….but I think they agree that we have to live for today. I say live for today instead of live in the moment for a pretty specific reason; I feel like ‘living in the moment’ have a more negative connotation and would lead people to believe that they shouldn’t worry about the consequences of their actions…
Don’t go out and get hammered and make babies!! Unless that’s a hobby of yours…
I just think that it’s worthwhile to try and make every moment count. Sure, in the grand scheme of things, there are plenty of insignificant moments. But a positive attitude can drastically alter the bigger picture. Don’t get weighed down by overanalyzing things, I can tell you from personal experience that it is just a burden. Don’t let the red tape in life slow you down.
A positive attitude does wonders for your daily happiness. It really does.
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
I don’t think I’ve taken enough time in the past year to enjoy the beautiful simplicity of life. Even when we have rough patches, it is hard for me to imagine being at a place in life where I’m just not thankful for every last breath of air I inhale. Humanity has such a storied existence, and I am glad to be a part of it. I am fortunate to be here. This all sounds really cliché and at times corny, but it’s true. Think about it…
65 years ago, many young men my age or younger were being drafted into the highest-casualty war of all time. People were dying left and right for glorified ideas of freedom and patriotism. Do we appreciate their sacrifices? Of course we do! That’s not the point though….
Here we are, complaining about things that matter now, but are trivial in the grand scheme of things. Sure, grades, relationships, social standing, and all these things CAN be very important. But sometimes when they become overwhelming, maybe it’s just best to remember how blessed we are to have choices in life. To be able to make what we want of our existence. I love that idea. I can be whoever I want to be…sure, being incredibly successful takes a lot of work and effort. But I have the opportunity to try…something that many around the world would only dream of having. Opportunity doesn’t always translate into success, but the chance of opportunity is even more important. Everyone deserves that chance.
So sure, I’ve had some rough patches…this year especially. But I can’t forget how lucky I am to even be alive. How great it is to take in every last breath of oxygen…
So I’ll live the one life I’ve been given to the absolute best of my ability.
Monday, June 7, 2010
What causes humanity to be creative? What makes us want to express ourselves and our culture, and what satisfaction is gained from doing so? I’ve always been intrigued by these questions, mostly because I am held captive to these desires even while I don’t fully understand them. I consistently find myself wanting to express myself, to make my mark, to enlighten myself artistically.
And I continue my attempts to do so through writing: blogs, poems, short stories, lyrics, etc. All of this lends to my overwhelming desire to morph my material into genuinely artistic musical expression. I am obsessed with this idea of perfecting my craft. Anybody who knows me on this level knows that I am a person who will search the world of art and music and never settle on one area. I can’t find an area of music that I can truly call ‘home.’ I’m not content to just play a certain type of song; I can probably credit Dylan and thefor that. In the musical world in which we exist today, uncertainty about where you stand usually leads to a less lucrative musical career. This doesn’t bother me. I’m overwhelmed by the depth of music; there is so much out there and I am content to drink it all in. I look for inspiration all over, and I find it in some of the most unexpected places at times…
However, I feel as if the musical tastes and preferences of the mass public have betrayed the purity of music (to an extent). Too many people blabber on in their youth about how ‘mainstream’ music is essentially bullshit, but I feel like a lot of people do this mainly to assert themselves as someone who goes against the status quo. Just because something is popular doesn’t mean it is inherently bad music, but I do believe that the current influx of popular music has had an love affair with technological advances of the day. Artists exist that take advantage of the vast amount of musical technological innovations that allow them to alter every last aspect of a song without needing much talent or skill themselves. While I do believe everybody who wants to make music should have a chance, I also feel like this increases the amount of ‘musicians’ who want to live the dream by putting together some catchy beats and robotic-like vocals. That combined with the decrease in lyrical innovation (okay, we get it, sex is popular) has really started to piss me off. Sometimes I worry that this will lead to younger generations who aren’t as willing to put the time and effort into music…ohh the opportunity they would miss!!
But alas, all one can do is keep doing what they love. I genuinely hope that people continue to see what music means to our lives….. and not just the good party songs. There is a deepness and spirituality to music that the surface cannot even begin to understand, or comprehend. There is a connection to the most basic emotions and feelings of humanity….it connects us all across the globe, and across generations. That is something I can never see myself without. And therein lies my true happiness…
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Suddenly, everything has changed. Everything I've known can't help me anymore. Nothing can. I must face this challenge. I have no choice now. No turning back...
A whole new world. It's overwhelming. I walk outside and look around. A picturesque lawn mower lies desolate and unused in an overgrown backyard. The trees sway as the birds attempt to sleep within the comfort of its canopy. The world is so beautiful. The simplicity of it all. At the same time, you realize the complexities of nature....So simple but so intricate.
Time stands still. Not completely...it creeps along with barely any change. But so much has occurred. It's hard to process...
But most of all I see. I see past what I thought life was limited to. I see the truth. It's frightening yet beautiful. I see my fears. I lose control and watch helplessly as everything begins to slip away into obscurity...But then....all of a sudden. The music plays. Sanity slowly returns....the comfort and warmth it brings is life-changing.
Perception is not always what it seems.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
It's hidden. Behind clouds of grey.
But I don't mind. Sometimes you have to see the light even when it's nowhere to be seen.
We see what we want to see.
Breathtaking beauty. It's out there.
Just open your eyes...
How I wish I could be a traveling troubadour! Roaming all over the land. Telling tales of faraway places. I would recall spectacular mountains, beautiful seas, scorching deserts, frozen tundras, thunderous waterfalls, wonderful monuments of human civilization....
There is so much to this world. Untapped. Unseen.
Never stop looking.
Just open your eyes...
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
I don't know, she wouldn't say.
I said something wrong
Now I long for yesterday.
Love was such an easy game to play.
Now I need a place to hide away
Oh, I believe in yesterday....'
I had some interesting dreams this afternoon. I hate wanting something that is gone. Even in our most determined state of mind, we can fall prey to these underlying desires in our subconscious. I'm not ashamed of them though. I expected myself to feel this way...I knew I would.
It's ironic that I can say my greatest strength is optimism while at the same time admit that I am probably currently suffering from some form of depression. But the truth isn't always black and white, as I've been finding out. I need to use my optimism to help other people. I've been given a gift of positive thinking, and to waste it on temporary misery would be a shame. My happiness is greatly affected by how those close to me are feeling. In the past, I've begun to realize that I can use my positive outlook to help create more happiness and joy in the world around me. Incredibly cheesy I know, but how could I ignore something that in turn makes me feel fulfilled?
I need to get back there. I need to work myself out of this slump and once again become the guy I know I was meant to be. And I'll get there....but I have to know that progress requires the blessing of patience. We have to earn it. I'm not ready to move on from certain things...and my heart knows it. But one day, I will come to terms with leaving the past in the past. And I know that day is quickly approaching.
Last summer I was confronted by a whole different set of problems. I never thought that one year from then I would be wrangling with the same issues but in a whole new light. I made it out alive then, and I will do the same now.
But at the end of the day....I still find myself alone. There's nothing wrong with being alone, but you have to find your own comfort within yourself. Sometimes it gets lost in the chaos of everyday life. Well, I want to get it back. And I will. I want to feel the strength that I once had. And I will.
Time heals all...
Monday, May 10, 2010
I understand what you've gone through. I understand what you're going through now. We've both had our fair share of highs and lows, pain and happiness. We've both 'come around' while the other is gone away. We've both had sleepless nights and emotional stress that have made past problems in life seem like child's play by comparison. We have looked to others for comfort in our darkest times, always afraid that those people cannot compare to what we had in each other.
We've had great memories. And we've had some miserable ones.
I've made my fair share of poor decisions. I've hurt you, I've been selfish, at times I've even convinced myself of the absolute certainty of my choices. But throughout it all...Through every single minute.. My heart could not deny the fact that I still cared. Deeply. Nobody who knows me could or would ever deny that I loved you unconditionally. Because it could be seen in my actions. In my eyes. In my very being...
What I don't understand...
Is how someone could assume to know so much about their 'love' but truly know so little. How someone can choose to act in a way that will devastate one while distract the other for only a short time. How could you have not known my heart? How could you have not seen where I was, and why I was there? These are all things I feared....that you never truly knew what I was facing. And now I see that you don't. My heart acted without my mind's permission. I wanted you to 'diagnose' me because I wanted you to understand me. I had always quelled those fears, those gnawing doubts, as me just being protective of myself. Maybe I expected too much. But now I see something deeper....something I had always worried about.
The truth is....I could have loved you for all of time. But I didn't know what love was then, and I still don't know today. We grew together. In so many ways. That was our biggest strength. Our fight, our resolve....our passion. But that same strength turned against us and proved to be poisonous to everything we hold dear together. That fight and resolve turned into a cage match...one that could only boast a single 'winner'. My actions and decisions were scrutinized by you. Instead of coming to me for answers, time and time again you responded in the only way you knew how: defensively. These defensive measures may have saved you, but they left me stranded. And wanting. And miserable.
Hatred is not something I'm willing to hold in my heart. I will grow stronger, I'm already feeling the resolve I once shared with you coming back to me once again. I feel the strength in my optimism, my determination, and my love. I will not let you get to me anymore. I will not let this keep me down.
But I want you to know. Cut the excuses....just like I have cut out mine. You hurt me. Whatever you may say, whatever argument you may have, it will never change how I feel. I've been attacked. It was personal and it was malicious. And whether or not you see it that way, I don't care. It's the truth. It became a public spectacle and to you and your friends I have become little more than a whiner and scapegoat for all the things I've done wrong. You discount all your faults and blame me all for mine. You have criticized me for 'only caring about myself.' I find that quite hypocritical at times....
But I'm going to let it go. Let you go. I guess all I ever wanted was for somebody to truly be in love with me for the 'real' me. But that wasn't the case here....it never was. Maybe I asked too much, I understand. Believe me, I've learned many valuable lessons.
So goodbye Ms. Doe. I won't hide the truth....I'm still a little scared about all this. But now I know the path I must walk. I will miss the comforts and the care that I am leaving behind...but I hope to find that again some day. The future holds bright promises for the both of us.
I want you to know that even though I hold resentment, that too will soon fade...If I've learned anything in life, it's that my anger will only deter me on what will be a challenging road to move on for good. I hope for the best for you in all your life endeavors, as I know you hope for mine. My heart is saddened that my role in your life is ending, but I want you to know that I took that role very seriously. You meant the world to me, and I hope that one day somebody else can fulfill that role better than I ever could.
I'm sorry it came to all this. I know neither of us would've wanted it to end this way, but maybe it's time to just accept that it has.
I wrote this poem last Thursday....that very night.
'So this is it then, you chose not to stay
I still cannot believe you let it end this way
All the love in my heart will slowly disappear
Just like translucent smoke into the thinnest of airs.
What is left then, if not just animosity?
Everything is gone, nothing left to see
I will fight off every last feeling I get
I still don't miss you, at least not yet
The fire keeps spreading, from my heart inside
Consuming remnants of you, leaving nothing behind
I want the fire to burn, I want it all gone
Hate will fade too, it won't wait very long
So I raise my glass to the times I have had
I accept it all, the good and the bad
The past will fade, as it always does
I resolve to fill my heart with nothing but love'
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Nothing but the barely audible clicks of my typing fingers...
Solitude. Embrace it.
The quiet tells me a lot of things. But most problematic, it shows me the condition of my heart. The condition that we sometimes avoid through mundane activities and routines...
And you don't always feel relieved...to know. Sometimes it scares the hell outta you, frightens you. But at least you know.
Find comfort in certainty.
Thursday, May 6, 2010
I looked at the screen. I was ready to write. I sat there for 5 minutes staring...
I continue to stare now. At this horrible mess of words. And ponder the meaning.
So I'll keep staring. Staring at this screen. Trapped inside a stoic mentality......
I had a conversation with a friend recently that got me thinking about life perspectives. There's such a wide range of perspectives on every last detail of life. Hundreds of adjectives out there that could in one word summarize your experiences. But that is too vague..
My perspective on life at this moment is probably not the same I had when I wrote my last blog. I'd like to establish some continuity with my example of exercise. Two or three weeks ago, I was on board and pumped about getting in shape and maintaining it. Today, I'm overwhelmed by the end of the school semester and one of the first things to go was exercise. In two weeks, I'll most likely begin to get into the best shape of my life....a positive habit of mine during the summer.
These extremes vary. My mentalities and determination in certain areas of life are all over the place. Last time I saw my sister she told me something that we laughed about but is kinda true. She said, 'everytime I see you, you're either in good shape and healthy or look terrible with a beer belly. And it changes each time!'
And that is the way of a cyclical lifestyle. The lows, the high. The downs, the ups. The lethargy, the determination.....
I would like to have an experience that revolutionizes my world. Changes my outlook on the comfortable. Makes me face fear. Makes me overcome it.
I want everything I've ever known and believed to be challenged.
And I want to succeed. I want to learn more. I want to know some of those unanswered questions....
Enough of wanting. Time to go out and do it.
Wednesday, April 21, 2010
He listens to me
And I ain't even talking out loud
Oh, oh, my God
And he says, ‘My son
Now, listen to me
Listen while the listening’s good
You’re not my son’
-Dr. Dog, 'From'
Life has been a bit of a mess lately. I'm starting to succumb to the pressures of the semester, and I'm letting it get under my skin. I'm finding myself anxious and stressed about every single day. Obviously this isn't healthy, and I would like to find a solution very quickly. I thought that blogging might be a good way to get started with critical evaluation of what's going on with me instead of simply shoving it to the back of my mind.
I suppose I feel like my relationships in life have taken a hit. I find people I've felt close to are slipping away. At times I feel like it is almost everyone. But are they slipping away or am I inadvertently pushing them away? This is a question that I wish I had the answer to.
Maybe I'm scared of what the future holds. Maybe I'm scared to remain close to anybody. Believe it or not, at times I have a very introverted personality. I retreat farther into myself when I'm faced with my problems. Sometimes it's good for me to become comfortable with me again; sometimes it removes me from everybody else. I like to rely on friends and family, but I haven't been doing that as much in the past months. I feel helpless as I watch some of my friendships slip away...even though I can do something about it. I suppose that feeling of lost hope comes from the fact that in some parts of life I've thrown in the towel. I've admitted failure and I've just given up. So now it's time to get back up.
As I will admit to anyone without hesitation, this past year has probably been the hardest of my life. So I suppose it's natural for me to have these feelings at times. But I cannot allow it to become a trend. I cannot allow myself to fall into hatred and pessimism about what I've been given in life. I've been given more than I deserve, that's for sure. I've been given friends who care, even when I drop off the face of the earth for a while. I have a family who loves me unconditionally and without judgment. I've got my music, which helps me express myself when other ways aren't sufficient. But most importantly: I've got my mindset. Determination and optimism. Even during the hardest parts of life, we can't give up. We just can't. I want to stop caring about things, because I feel like it just makes life harder...but I won't, because it also makes it more worthwhile. I want to stop thinking about the people I love, but I won't because I love them and always want to have their best interests at heart. I want to stop being a caring person, and maybe at times I have...But I refuse to let that be me, because that is another strong quality that I have been given.
I've also been having some tough dreams lately. 'Subconscious fears' as I like to call them. I have to watch people who I care about fade away. I have to watch myself be without the people who love me. But, sometimes I just have to believe that what I'm doing is right. Who I'm trying to be is right. It doesn't matter if every last one of my decisions are right or wrong, all that matters is that I'm trying to make the right ones. If people don't understand that, they aren't worth having around. At least for me. But even though I've allowed myself to trust my instincts, you have to be wary of the fact that you aren't always right. We make mistakes. It's natural. Sometimes they change the course of our lives. And whether or not that's the case for me, I have to understand that my choices are mine alone and I made them for a reason, even when I don't fully understand that reason. I hope you can understand that. And I hope things make sense one day...
So I'll keep my chin up. Because the best is yet to come.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
But, I cannot forget: confusion is a part of life. We cannot always be filled with crystal-clear purpose. Sometimes we have to do some soul searching, because purpose can lose it's meaning and cause if you allow yourself to forget about the reasons behind your drive. So instead of being frustrated with all these contradictory thoughts and emotions, I will try to embrace them. I will try to see clarity through the confusion. Light through the fog. And I will find it. Because above all else, I am a very determined human-being. Determined to see my life through to its full potential. Do I understand that potential completely at this time? No. But who does?
And that is the nature of life. Sometimes it is frustrating and unknown, but still always a journey. I may let myself get slowed down, but I will never come to a complete stop. It's all in how you handle the speed bumps and obstacles. And I will choose to handle them with my head held high, ready to face anything life chooses to give me.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
I face life's challenges. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail. But success is weighed by our determination to get up and move past the failures. Sometimes I just want to call it quits. Not on life itself, but on my drive. My motivation and my determination. Sometimes I'm just so scared/frustrated/lonely/afraid that I just wanna cave in, and cop out by calling myself a weak person. Sometimes I just want to crawl up into a ball for 5 years and start fresh in some distant and unknown future.
But sometimes isn't always. And I can't forget that. There's good and bad. There's highs and lows. We have to face the lows. Have to. If we hide from them, it will only delay our problems. But it's because we never give up on those lows that we deserve the highs. And this is also the reason why those highs feel so incredible.
A life without feeling, good OR bad, is a lost cause.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Something that I've expressed before in this blog has been on my mind again lately. I feel like in the past month I have allowed some of my personality to come under to attack, and although I usually don't allow people or things to get to me I did this time. If there's one thing I'm very open about, it's that I admit to being a very flawed human being. A simple response to this confession is that all people are flawed, and therefore it's okay in a sense. I believe it's a little more complicated than that. The minute I just give up on my flaws, I'm admitting defeat. Now, some people in the world, particularly many influenced through different religions, have found a system of moral standards to guide their lifestyles. Whereas I have no problem with this and support any system that works for people, it is not an approach that I can be completely satisfied with. When it comes down to it, I feel like life is an individual experience. This may seem contrary to my personal beliefs, because anyone who knows me knows that I am a firm supporter of relying on family and friends to help you through life. What I'm saying here is a little different. I believe that there are so many paths that have been laid out as the 'correct' one by so many different avenues: religion, science, art, politics, mass media, etc. But this is where I can no longer agree. I feel like life is an individual experience in the sense that everyone's path is MEANT to be different, but we as limited creatures try and make sense of this uncertainty by advocating one certain path of life. This is evident through our school systems and churches, but also through the culture that is so immersed in our daily lives. How could one human being, or even a group of human beings, be so bold as to say that THEY have found the right way to go, and they alone? Or how can individuals condemn others for approaching life in a way that seems foreign to them? In my opinion, this dogmatism is in part a product of the limited capacity of human beings. Although some people will tell you that eventually we will know everything, I don't believe this is true. The main reason behind this is because I believe that the search for purpose and knowledge is a important part of what defines the human race. We cannot survive without it. But too many people forget that life is always a search. We will never have all the answers, but we were never meant to. My goal is to continually search for the right path for me, not for anyone else. That seems obvious on the individual level but if you tie it in to what I've been saying you will realize that it is not the approach the vast majority takes. And that is why I feel like happiness is so evidently not contingent on fortune or fame, or any other material thing. Happiness comes from doing what makes YOU happy. And after all, 'happy' is just a word we use to describe something we don't truly understand. But just because we don't understand it, does that mean we can't pursue it? Food for thought, I suppose.
So basically, the point of my long spiel is that I still firmly stand by my viewpoint that there is no right to condemn or expect people to conform to some society-approved lifestyle. We do this daily, but how can we justify it? How do we know our path is better than another's?
And should this need to refrain from judging be used as an excuse to maintain whatever kind of lifestyle we want? That's a tough question, and it can be a slippery slope. True, only you can completely know what will make you happy. Only you can make decisions in life about the kind of person you want to be. And ultimately, you will be responsible for those decisions, whether it be good or bad. I'm not trying to start a riot about morals here, I'm just trying to state my point that everything is subjective. Even the things that we put labels on because we think that they are too far outside of the norm to be subjective. Your heart will tell you what is good and what is not. You can pretend not to listen, but it will not fail you if you let it do it's job. Be on the guard against people telling you what is right and what is not. Because although they might be right, they might just as easily be wrong. It highlights the underlying problem with humanity: we are fallible, we are not perfect.
This admittance of our limitations is not depressing to me. On the contrary, I find it to be a relief. It proves that we have trials and tribulations for a reason. It proves that the hard times and the good times are both pivotal to who we are as a person. It proves that although sometimes life is overwhelming, you need to sit back, relax, and realize that the battle is far from over. As long as we continue searching for our personal meaning in life, we'll be okay. Never think that you have it all figured out, because you don't. And that's the simple beauty of life.
Sunday, January 31, 2010
At times I find myself frustrated with life. Very frustrated. But I've been trying much harder as of late to be stronger than my frustrations. Life is too short to get caught up in things that don't make you happy. I've been Mr. Nice Guy, and I've been a pushover. When you allow yourself to be pushed too far, you speculate just pulling a 180 and not caring about anything anymore. But no matter how much you deny it, each and every one of us always care. Denying it is just a form of cowardice. Hiding doesn't solve anything. I won't hide from my problems, I'll embrace them. I'll go head-to-head with them without any fear.
No matter where you are in life, there will be problems there to challenge you. Let them. If you aren't challenged, you can't succeed.
This sounds like a motivational speech, as I'm sure most of my blogging does. But you know what? I'm okay with that. Because I write primarily to motivate myself. And if someone else can gain something from it to, great. If not, well, nobody is forcing you to read this.
Don't let life slow you down. Roll with the punches.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
I'm thankful for great friends. Friends that will always be a phone call away. Friends that make a bunch of us dinner selflessly. Friends that will never kick you when you're down. Friends that won't leave you down, but will help you get back on your feet. I'll always have my friends' backs, and I'm glad that they have mine.
Some people pride themselves in being as independent as possible. There is nothing wrong with independence. Every year that goes by I become more independent in terms of living, finances, keeping up with obligations, decision making, you name it. It's part of the natural progression of life, although I will admit that this happens at drastically different rates. But anyways... I've always been able to rely on myself quite a bit, and that's been great.
But then there are the dark times. The lows in life. The valley between the mountains. And during those times, I am nothing without my friends and family. Some people view that as a weakness; I don't. I feel sorry for people who refuse to allow those close to them to shoulder some of their burden when they can't handle it themselves. My journey to where I am now has been filled with ups and downs. I've lost some family and friends along the way. I've had points where I've been on top of the world, looking out at the sunrise from the top of a mountain. I've had struggles that have left me clinging on to a mere thread of hope, love, and faith. I'm scared that some things I will have to face one day will destroy me. But even then, I know that I will be okay if I am surrounded by those I love. Who ever said we had this life figured out to the point where we are capable of going at it alone?
I'm having trouble collecting my thoughts at the moment. I guess that's a good sign to call it quits for now.
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
I've also been worrying a bit about my uncertain future. As some of you may know, I'm not even a 'permanent' resident of these here United States even though I've been living here for 13 years. And although those joyous 13 years have been filled with many jokes about green cards and immigration, reality is slowly but surely catching up with me. Imagine what it would be like to have grown up somewhere 13 years of your life knowing full well that you might have to leave home in less than 2 years. For good. Not exactly the best of circumstances. But I guess at times like these I just have to believe that if I'm meant to stay here, I'll find a way (And for you jokers, yes, the way I'm referring to will be LEGAL). I have no sense of permanence, no guarantee that after college I can just find a job to get me by while looking for my career job. None of this is promised to me. Even my major, political science, is relatively USA-specific. I feel kind of sheepish admitting this, but I didn't worry about this problem for the past year and a half because I thought the universe might have found a way of working it out for me. But I was wrong.
As much as uncertainty scares me, there's no point wasting all my time worrying about it. We're not guaranteed 2 years. We're not even guaranteed tomorrow.
Live for today.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
"God bless the America we are trying to create."
"We are going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good."
"My husband did not wrap up the nomination in 1992 until he won the California primary somewhere in the middle of June, right? We all remember Bobby Kennedy was assassinated in June in California. You know, I just, I don't understand it."
"My sons are all adults and they've made decisions about their careers and they've chosen not to serve in the military and active duty and I respect their decision in that regard. One of the ways my sons are showing support for our nation is helping me get elected because they think I'd be a great president."
"We don't all agree on everything. I don't agree with myself on everything."
First pointless post. Check.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
I've been trying to get back to the gym. Get back in shape. Not a new years resolution, no. I think that sort of resolution is a waste of time honestly. I mean, you just end up making it every single year. It never changes. Or maybe it just doesn't change for those of us who aren't determined enough to make it change.
And that's all that it comes down to: Determination. But what are we determined to do in life? Not all the same things resonate with all of us the same way; music and writing to me may be statistical models and engineering stuff (that's as specific as I can get in a field I don't understand) to you. I think we get too caught up in seeing our picture, and not the bigger one. It's not all about us. If you like to get in shape, great. I personally enjoy it when I can find the time. It is a great stress reliever, which is great cause I carry a large burden of stress that I shouldn't let myself carry. It keeps you healthy, both physically and mentally. It crosses over into every aspect of your life if you're dedicated enough, such as encouraging a healthier diet, productive relaxation time, etc. So I guess it can be considered ironic that I am trying to get myself back into shape, back into the habit of being healthy...but only by consistently building a little muscle here and there and trying to get by with a measly cardio workout. I still have an unhealthy diet and (at times) lifestyle.
I don't know if I have a point here. I guess what I'm trying to say is this: the amount of effort I dedicate to getting in shape, it works. For me. It's not gonna do as much for me as for someone who goes the full ten yards with the diet/lifestyle/etc. But it does something for me. And that's why it's worthwhile. Maybe one day soon I'll convince myself that eating better may be a bit of an inconvenience now but a big help in the long run. Somehow, I think senior citizen Jonathan might thank me for it if I do. Cheesy, but true. So that's why I gotta look at the whole picture.
But again, it's about being happy. If I'm not completely in shape, but I'm making efforts, and that works for me, don't judge. Don't pounce on that because you would approach it differently. You aren't me are you? If your way works for you, and has much better results, more power to you. Feel free to recommend to me what you are doing differently. But a recommendation is all that is necessary. So basically, we are all responsible for ourselves. You need to surround yourself with people who care about your well being, and health. But you need to surround yourself with people who know their path is not yours, and vice versa. It's how we meet along that path and what we do when we meet that matters to me.
Sorry for the working out analogy, my muscles are really sore and that's all I can think about....maybe the healthier eating should be implemented sooner rather than later.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
I feel like I've been kind of distant from reality for a while. I've become obsessed with my music, both my band's and my own, and I find myself behind the guitar or piano for hours at a time. I'm glad my passion has been rekindled, because I know it is an area of life that I've been incredibly blessed in. I've worked hard to become an "above average" musician, and I feel ready to tackle the challenge of taking it to the next level. Everybody has potential to do great things in this world. It's true. I promise. Sometimes we just don't fulfill that potential. Well, I feel like music is the area where I've been given a chance to step outside the box and rise to the occasion. And I plan on doing just that.
At younger ages, such as in middle school and high school, any young musician dreams of 'making it big' or becoming famous. And rightfully so in my opinion. I consider myself a dreamer. I feel like if I wasn't, I'd be overcome by the to-the-point culture of the world today. And what I mean by that is, people don't encourage that kind of dreaming anymore. The world tells you there is a formula: high school, college, graduate school for some, and then career. I think this formula is a double-edged sword. From a musician's point of view, I can obviously see the benefits of an education. I don't want to gamble the rest of my life away by not going to school. At the same time though, take a look at how many 'undecided' majors there are out there. I feel like it's because people are rushed. People are pushed down a road and they don't know where they fit in. As important as this system is, it contributes to unhappiness. It forces people towards things they aren't interested in, and careers they don't want. Sure, they might be financially stable one day, but will they be happy?
Which brings me back to my predicament. I know music will always be a HUGE part of my life. It makes me more happy than anything I've ever experienced. I won't let that feeling escape me. I'm a talented guitarist, but does that mean I'm meant for fame or a career in music? Not necessarily. But my desire for music DOES mean it will always be more than just a hobby. So I'm going to take it one step at a time. I'm working on a degree, and I'm going to be grateful that I put forth the effort. But I promise you this now: I will never stop with my passion for music. And that's how I know it will always be a big part of my life. Doesn't matter what capacity it is in.
Don't stop dreaming. The world is a battleground between realists and those who care to dream. Don't lose sight of life, but don't ever get caught up in the routine. We are here for such a short time, there's no reason to spend it doing anything else than what makes you happy.
Sorry, longer than I thought.
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
I want to be somebody who can inspire. I want to be somebody who can truly show people that mistakes are okay. It's that determination to grow, be stronger, and gain maturity that distinguishes us from failure.
And now a quote from the nerdier side of life...
"Do or do not...There is no try."
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
I had a really hard but really much needed conversation tonight. Closure is a good thing, but also a complex one. I am thankful though. I'm thankful for what I've been given. For what I have. For what I know I will always have. I'm very blessed.
Life is so complicated. That's one of the most cliche phrases of all time, but it's true. I think the minute we think we've gotten a part of it figured out is the minute our world is usually turned upside down. And wow, I never realized how scared I truly am of the 'lows' in life. But I have to accept that you can't have the highs without the lows. I need to be thankful, and know that I can feel so shitty because I care so much. And my highs in life will be that much better because of it. So no regrets.
Purpose. What is it? I feel like there is something big out there planned for me. I'm supposed to do something. Unfortunately, 'something' is as specific as I can get. Is it wrong for me to think I'm meant for something big? Maybe, maybe not. You could tell me your opinion, but I can promise you that you don't know either...
And that's another thing. When we think about how much we as humans truly know, it can be slightly depressing. The human mind has a lot of potential, and capabilities, but we are also limited creatures with limited knowledge. But we seem to think it's limitless. I just think when it comes down to it, getting too specific about certain things can lead to error. After all, we're only HUMAN. That's why I don't buy into all these petty arguments about specifics in politics, religion, morality, everything. These complex topics have SO much room for human error and interpretation. I guess the point of this mini-rant is this: take everything with a grain of salt. There is nothing perfect in this world, but truly accepting that has beautiful potential.
I'm all over the place this morning. I apologize. I doubt very many people are reading anyways and if you like me enough to read this, you'll probably forgive me. My mind is going a million miles a minute, and at times like these my coherence is probably reduced to the 'slightly coherent' level. Whatever. It's freeing to write. To express my thoughts. And I won't ever stop. Sorry world.
Now I'm hearing an insane John Mayer solo. That man speaks to guitars in a way I only dream of doing one day. If you ever get a chance to listen to 'I Don't Need No Doctor' by his band at their live show, do so. It's phenomenal. If I have ever shown you anything John Mayer related, it's probably this song. Anyways...
'Whoa gravity, stay the hell away from me.
Whoa gravity has taken better men than me.
How can that be?
Keep me where the light is'
Alright fellow bloggers/blog-readers, time for some sleep. Stay sweet.
Monday, January 4, 2010
Since we are just delving into 2010, I guess I'll start by talking about the significance of a new year. 2010. wow. In my opinion, we put too much significance on new years in relation to our problems. I mean, yes it is a symbolic new start, a fresh slate...but if something bad happens in the early hours/days/months of 2010, does that jeopardize the quality of the year? Well, it shouldn't. I've already had some stupid memories of 2010 and I only had four days to do it, but you know, I'm gonna be optimistic. This year is gonna be great, and I enjoy an outlook that focuses on a day-to-day basis. You can't control yesterday's mistakes, and you shouldn't take too much time worrying about the future. So I won't. I'm gonna do what I can to make every day better than the day before. And for those rough days that can't be salvaged, I'm gonna try my hardest to remember that tomorrow is a NEW day, free from the problems of the past. We can make it what we want. After a emotional roller coaster of an end to 2009, I decided to live my life the way I was meant to live it. Some people may disagree with my methods or style, and that's okay. We all have our own ways of living, and they all should be equally respected (or at least accepted). I'm an optimistic person, and I'm gonna keep using my qualities as a people person to help as many people as I can. If my ways are unorthodox, too bad. I'm one person in a world of billions; every one is different, every one is unique. Sometimes that seems hard to believe, but if you analyzed every little complexity of every human being I think it would become very apparent that it's true.
Ahh the power of rants. They are good for getting stuff out of the system, even if it's random gibberish. Looking forward to this week. Hopefully a decent movie night tomorrow, and then who knows what else is in store for me.
Finished a new song today. I love finishing songs. The more I write, sing, and play, the more I fall in love with life. And that's how I know that even when life is chaotic and falls apart, I must be doing something right. Because I am happy. Not every single moment, but I'm happy with life. And I know I will continue to be.
Here's to you, 2010. Let's rock the house.