Friday, April 08, 2016

The Swaying Buoy

I'm truly grateful Google provides this here space to share my thoughts and what is, at any given time, going through my mind.

Most go about their lives with revelations and crossroads that require strategic and critical thinking, but do we? Being able to transfer this from my mind to text, these proceedings that go on, if you will, I can then study what I'm going through in my life, coming back and checking myself every step of the way, like from a text book.

It's nice to say that for the past ten years, recorded right here, there have been different priorities formed and molded, not by outside influences, but by observations of what I found is going on outside. What I thought and think is right or wrong, my perception of the world, of some of it's beautiful characters or ugly ones, of it's painfully obvious flaws, it's delights, it's dangers and different corners.

It's a lovely place, if looked at from the right angle and it's certainly not when out of focus. But it's not the only place where we live. Probably at around 10 years old or so your innocence, uniqueness, is captured. Like with a dog catchers net thrown over your head, you're caught by what is made to seem important, by your parents, your friends and even the cartoons on your TV. Really, what you are captured by is the externally influenced and artificial mold that your mind has become, and by the perceptions that have been placed in there about whats important by people and things that are many to name.

Most people are prisoners in their heads. Lions caged, controlled, molded, subjugated and indoctrinated by it. As with most things, there is a spectrum. Some are in maximum security lockdown, moving with inertia in their bubble of too many worries and thoughts, never in the actual moment. Others less so. I would imagine most only really live when they know* they have a short time left, and many dont at all.

This topic, as you can read in the archives of this page, is important to me. To break out from the shackles of the mind. To live in the moment, with the true and literal understanding that tomorrow, really, is not promised. What I've found is this:

It's rare to escape this net in youth, we flow with it in order to fulfill our natural pack mentality. I remember when I was young, meeting people in my teens who really only cared to go someplace with a lot of friends because they would feel "safer" with numbers. Then, as we grow older, our perception of what is important changes. Now it's time to follow suit and go to medical school like your dad. You can be seen with your headphones blaring, confusion and frustration introduces itself right then because you love photography, all the while studying stuff you hate. Of course taking pictures wouldn't fit right with whats expected of you anyway, right?

These are different trials at random crossroads in our lives that need proper external analysis and examination, this fact I hope I established here. And so something I noticed, and a good practice, is to pretend that you have 1 or 2 more days alive. One by one, things will automatically prioritize properly. Whether you're in the Gulags, Alcatraz, a cubicle, or a fancy office suite, you will sum up life like it was a flip thru. I need not mention those who describe moments right before they almost passed, seeing images of family and such in their heads. It's like you are being allowed to really live for a quick moment before leaving. Like glancing through a closing door. Priority, in such a case, is not gently learned, but like a really angry teacher shoving a textbook about it in the face of a student, violently so.

Like an enormous, loud and colorful circus, such is our world. No mask is the same here. Faces are painted by experience or sometimes with crayola crayons. Some are colorful, some gray and gloomy. My conclusion, however is that our attitude towards any stimuli in life constitutes 90% of how it will affect us. This echoes life advice given to me from a second cousin who lost both of his parents to suicide and so I'll share it here:

 "The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company...a church...a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past...we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you...we are in charge of our Attitudes."

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