corimagua

exploring my mind and spreading the light through blogging

Category: My Writings

The Reason is You

I like to think that life is not ultimately meaningless but full of purpose. Like Aristotle said, “happiness is the meaning and the purpose of life, the whole aim and end of human existence.”  In our own weird and mysterious ways we all strive for happiness and love. Love is the purpose and the way, we all want to feel loved. But this dualistic world sometimes feels crazy, upside down and wrong and love seems to be non-existant. There are days where I am bombarded with negativity which I try to shrug off but it works hard at taking hold. There was a time when negativity had taken grasp of my soul and days darkened and drifted into each other, but it all ended when you appeared. Out of nowhere you came in to my life and like a gust of refreshing air you blew the negativity away and awakened the positivity that laid dormant inside of me. You gave me a reason to believe in love as the answer to most questions of meaning in life. You gave me medicine in the form of kisses, laughs and happiness. They say that love is just a word, a loose construct, until someone comes in to your life to give it meaning. I found that meaning in you. Just the thought of you comforted me because my life was a frown and you turned it into a smile. When we met I told you that I like to write but when I shared that with you i had not written for months. I only write when i have an inspiration to do so, i can’t force it. When i’m inspired the sentences flow out of me, like i’m channeling ideas from someone else’s mind, a mind much more clearer and sharper than mine. It know it sounds strange but its how my mind works. It’s the miraculous inspiration that you give me which is special and unique. I was a secluded and reserved person and never shared much of myself to anyone until you appeared. Once i started sharing things with you i realized that i had been dying to share my ideas, my thoughts, myself, and didn’t even know it. I realized that It is through this sharing that one explores his depths. You give me a reason to write and the simple fact that you sit there, day after day, and receive my messages, that you read them and try to listen to what it is truly is i want to say, that gives me inspiration to continue. You helped me to find myself. You bring out the best in me and continually inspire me to be better. This brilliance lay hidden inside of me and and you grabbed me by the shoulders and shook my life so I could find it. You came with your torch of passion and love and set my life ablaze. You lit a fire that will forever burn inside my soul. The reason is you and talking to you makes my day. 

A story for all those looking for a special kind of love. Believe that it is out there and don’t settle until you find it. 

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Nada Me Puede Parar

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 “Cada persona es una nueva puerta a otro mundo diferente”

How awesome it is to live new experiences, to get to know and feel new things. To get to know new streets and new people learning from everything and everyone. When we get to know the unknown we realize that the different is not so different. That even with our diversity and differences we are all very much alike, and deep down at the fundamental level we are all the same.

 

We are each on our  journey in search of happiness, fighting our own battles along the great path of life. The path goes up and down, with steps forward and steps backwards, but when we fall we always rise back up. We face challenges, fight our own resistance and overcome our fears. We learn to coexist with happiness and sadness, with hope and despair, with the good and the bad and we realize that Life is worth living only If you feel alive. It doesn’t matter where you go, as along as it is always forward, continually growing and enjoying the ride. Live and learn, grow and flourish. Like Brazilian rapper Marcelo D2 says, “nada pode me parar”, NOTHING can stop me !

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Español (Soy un estudiante aprendiendo, perdón por las faltas gramáticas y de ortografía)

Que lindo que es vivir nuevas experiencias, conocer y sentir nuevas cosas. Caminar y conocer nuevas calles y nueva gente, aprendiendo te todo y todos. Al conocer lo desconocido nos damos cuenta que lo diferente no es tan diferente. Que a pesar de nuestra diversidad y nuestras diferencias, somos muy parecidos y al fondo somos todos iguales.

Cada uno en su viaje en busca de la felicidad, luchando sus propias batallas a lo largo del gran camino de la vida. El camino sube y baja y damos pasos adelante y pasos atrás pero cuando nos caemos siempre nos levantamos. Enfrentamos desafíos, peleamos contra nuestra resistencia y superamos nuestros miedos. Aprendemos a Convivir con la alegría y la tristeza, la ilusión y la disolución, la esperanza y la desesperanza y nos damos cuenta que solo vale la pena vivir si uno se siente vivo. No importa a donde vayas mientras siempre sea hacia adelante, continuamente mejorando e intentando de disfrutando del viaje. Conocer y aprender, vivir y crecer. Como dice Marcelo D2, Nada Pode Me Parar!

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Gaian Connection: Our Relationship With The Living Biological Planet We Call Home (PART 3)

(PART 3)

Bright Minds Agree

Global Warming acts on the planet like a cigarrete does to the human body. Each cigarette poisons the body a bit more, slowly and gradually destroying our system. Global warming is a cancer to the body of the planet whose effects are gradual and cumulative, slowly spreading like an infection until some system starts to fail.

At the end of the day you can listen and believe to whoever or whatever you want. You can believe, like some do, that this is all a big hoax or a natural cycle that the planet is going through, but this isn’t the most intelligent of decisions. I think it’s wiser to listen to science and rationality instead. Listen to the words of the wisest and brightest minds of our time, listen to the words of the world’s best scientists. They all agree; on our current path, global warming is irreversible–and getting worse. In 1994, fifteen hundred of the world’s top scientists, including a majority of living Nobel Prize winners, issued a plea regarding environmental problems: “The earth is finite. Its ability to absorb wastes and destructive effluents is finite. Its ability to provide food and energy is finite. Its ability to provide for growing numbers of people is finite. Moreover, we are fast approaching many of the earth’s limits. current economic practices that damage the environment, in both developed and underdeveloped nations, cannot be continued with the risk that vital global systems will be damaged beyond repair.” That was almost 20 years ago and what has changed? Sadly, almost nothing. We need to see, hear, and listen to the warning calls and signals which are all around us. Record breaking freak storms that are growing in size and strength. Increased flooding in some areas, and periods of extreme droughts and wild fires at others. Tsunamis, earthquakes, tornados, all with increased power and ferocity leading to ever increasing levels of destruction. How far do we want to take this? You want to wait to act until it is your family’s livelihood who is threatened?

Look at all those devastated by Katrina In New Orleans, by Hurricane sandy in the north, by the tsunami in Indonesia. Those left in ashes and ruin due to wild fires in the West Coast of the United States and in Australia. Those devastated by the latest tragedy that was Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. And also the millions across the globe who are suffering the effects of climate change, in myriads of ways, who never make it into the nighttime news and we never hear about them.  Feel their suffering and understand that it could be you who’s hit next. If we don’t do something the chaos and devastation caused by global warming ,fueled by modern industrial civilization, will eventually come knocking at our doors. There is nothing natural about what is going on. We pride ourselves on being the consumers but if we are not careful. it will be nature who consumes us. It’s time to Wake Up.

Other’s Suffering And Empathy

We have to use the powerful tool called empathy. We have to put ourselves in the shoes of those who suffer today from climate change and in the shoes of the future generations who are sure to suffer as well. Watch and try to feel the suffering of the millions of Philippino families whose lives have been devastated by the Haiyan Typhoon. But don’t just follow this tragedy on the news and think ‘what a bummer’ and feel sad for the 2 minutes of footage you might watch on TV. I know it might be hard, especially if your watching the chaos and destruction through a T.V screen inside the comfort of your home hundreds of miles away, but try to put yourself in their shoes. Try to realize that it could be you and your family one the other side of the television screen experiencing the suffering. After feeling their pain you might be stirred to do something about it and help in any way you can to fix our world in crisis. In the Mayan language when greeting one another Mayans would say “In laakech,” which means “I am you,” and were answered with the words “A laaken,” which means “You are me.” Realizing that the so called  “other” is also “me” and utilizing our power to empathize is crucial for the health and survival of our species.

“Many of our deepest thinkers and many of those most familiar with the scale of the challenges we face have concluded that the transitions required can be achieved only in the context of what I will call the rise of a new consciousness. For some, it is a spiritual awakening–a transformation of the human heart. For others it is a more intellectual process of coming to see the world anew and deeply embracing the emerging ethic of the environment and the old ethic of what it means to love thy neighbor as thyself. But for all it involves major cultural change and a reorientation of what society values and prizes most highly.”

-James Gustave Speth

RE-Discovering our Place in Nature

We have slowly lost our connection to nature, the real thing that lies beyond our human made environments. Due to the technological diversions caused by television, video games, i-pads and i-phones children no longer play outdoors and the current generation of children is one of the most disconnected from nature ever in our history. We need to reverse this trend because it is much easier to disregard, disrespect, and abuse that which we feel separated and isolated from. As technology infiltrates deeper into our lives, building a connection with nature becomes essential, this connection is crucial to the health of our planet and the health of our bodies. Techno gadgets will have an increasingly  prevalent role in our lives. Technology is here to stay, there is no denying or avoiding this, and it’s more of a reason why building a relationship with nature is so important. This relationship will give us a chance to step away from the onslaught of our computers, tv’s, and smart phones, and give our over stimulated minds a much needed break, a separation, a chance to relax, take a breath of fresh air if you will. We are slowly starting to realize that connecting with nature is a necessity. So go into the mountain, go on hikes, grow a garden, fish, or find any other way you can think off that will grant you a connection with the wilderness and a allow its simple beauty to captivate your senses. It will make you a happier and fuller person and it will improve the quality of your life. There is a bit of nature inside everyone of us and there is a bit of everyone one of us in nature. Returning to Nature feels a lot like returning home.

“A human being is a part of a whole, called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separated from the rest… a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”

-Albert Einstein

Indigenous World-Views

Indigenous tribes, as backwards and “uncivilized” as you want to see them, understand nature far more deeply than we do and they share a special relationship with it. Long ago, they established a symbiotic relationship with the planet understanding that as long as they took care of the land they lived on, the land would take care of them, providing the sustenance they needed to survive. Indigenous tribes from across the globe have been telling us for centuries that the planet is certainly alive and that we need to respect and protect it because after all we are also a part of it. But save your ignorant savage comments for another time, they were truly on to something. Aside from all the spiritual aspects of it, there is enough verifiable scientific evidence to conclude that we hold an intrinsic and intimate relationship with the planet that cannot be ignored.

Traditional societies possess a vast sea of knowledge that would help modern civilization  provide direction and management to natural resources. A report in 1987 by the World Commission on Environment and Development entitled Our Common Future called for recognition of and greater respect for the wisdom inherent in traditional societies:

Their very survival has depended upon their ecological awareness and adaptation…. These communities are the repositories of vast accumulations of traditional knowledge and experience than links humanity with its ancient origins. Their disappearance is a loss for the larger society, which could learn a great deal from their traditional skills in sustainably managing very complex ecological systems. It is a terrible irony that as formal development reaches more deeply into the rainforests, deserts, and other isolated environments, it tends to destroy the only cultures that have proved able to thrive in these environments.

Today, modern science is uncovering the intricate and infinite ways in which we are connected with the planet and all other life forms on earth, yet; we remain largely ignorant about the giant matrix of life which surrounds us and which we are a part off. I’m sure that it was easy at first to dismiss and even ridicule the countless Indigenous tribes who prayed to mother nature, claiming the planet was alive and that it had a spirit, and essence, which flowed through the body of the earth. They claimed that this spirit also flowed through the human body and every other living entity, connecting us all. We need to learn from these wise humans who have co-existed with nature for thousands of years, way longer than our modern day civilization. Indigenous people understood how to live within the boundaries of nature and they knew how to survive and sustain their people through long periods of time and this is exactly what we must learn to do. Let’s listen and learn from the wisdom of the indigenous people, combine it with our modern technical minds, mix it with creativity, imagination, and the dynamic human spirit and what we could achieve is unthinkable. Insisting that we protect the earth, our planet, our home, can no longer be dismissed as Indigenous backwardness or as Hippy mumbo jumbo. Our connection and dependance on the planet exists and the threats from environmental destruction are very real. We are the cause of all our problems but we are also the solutions.

Maintaining a planet in good health is essential for the health of the human body. If we hope to live a life of health and well-being we need healthy, clean, fresh waters and foods. We need to breathe clean, pristine air into our lungs and we need a healthy dose of sunshine and exercise. The human body is a self-sustaining organism and it is designed to keep us healthy, but we need to set up a healthy environment not only within, but also outside, to allow our bodies to work correctly.  A human being’s natural condition is to be in a state of good health and we should reap all the benefits of such a state by providing our bodies with the simple but essentials things that it needs. We know how to live healthy lives but we need to reach deep into our beings and allow this ancient knowledge to resurface.

“More and more people sense at some level that there’s a great misdirection of life’s energy. We have channeled our desires, our insecurities, our need to demonstrate our worth and our success, our wanting to fit in and to stand out increasingly into material things–into bigger homes, fancier cars, grander appliances, exotic vacations. But in the background we cannot help but know that ‘the best things in life are free’ and that ‘money can’t buy love.’ We know we’re slighting the precious things that no market can provide–that truly make life worthwhile. We sense that we are hollowing out whole areas of life, of individual and social autonomy, and of nature and that, if we don’t wake up, we will soon lose the chance to return, to reclaim ourselves, our neglected society, our battered world, because if we are not more careful soon, there will be nothing left to reclaim, nothing left to return to.”

-James Gustave Speth

Gaian Connection: Our Relationship With The Living Biological Planet We Call Home (PART 2)

(PART 2)

The Industrial Machine

Retailing analyst Victor Lebow declared shortly after WWII, ” Our enormously productive economy….demands that we make consumption our way of life, that we convert the buying and use of goods into rituals, that we seek our spiritual satisfaction, our ego satisfaction, in consumption…We need things consumed, burned up, worn out, replaced, and discarded at an ever-increasing rate.” We have set in motion an industrial machine of such complexity and such dependence on expansion that we do not know how to make do with less in order to move to a steady state in terms of our demands on nature. We can’t force the planet to accommodate itself to our insane consumption patterns because our demands are out of this world. I say that quite literally, we would need other planet earths to continue living the way we do. When I say “we” I mean people in the industrialized nations, if all the people in developing nations lived like we do we would surely need a lot more planet Earths to supply all that demand.

This global system in place needs continuous and infinite growth to maintain itself and reducing consumption by slowing down our voracious pace seems unthinkable and unattainable. The insane notion of eternal growth is unsustainable and illogical, nothing in this world can be exempt from the natural cycles of life and death. The only processes that we can rely on forever are cyclical; all linear processes must eventually come to an end. Our civilization rose thanks to cheap abundant energy,trapped under the ground and created over millions of years, but this trapped energy source will run out at some point and therein lies our problem: we became dependent on a finite resource. Our modern way of life and our modern cities are dependent and accustomed to cheap fossil fuels, mainly petroleum. But the very things that gave humanity the chance to thrive and grow at an extraordinary rate are now the very same things which are destroying us. The foundations to our world are built on sand and unless we rebuild and reshape our structures our world will be folded back into the sand.

Changing Our Global System from Unsustainable To Sustainable

We are slowly making the planet a place inhabitable for humanity and if we continue with the toxification of our world we will leave behind a planet inhabited by cockroaches, microbes and bacteria. Earth and life will continue on but humanity will be forced to drop out of the race of life joining the rest of the species who have gone extinct.  We’ve made it so far and we could go so much further, we have so much potential, but we are squandering it all because of greed, the lust for power, and false ideas of progress. Those in power, blinded by their might, are hell-bent on destroying the ecosystem which sustains us. It’s hard to accept these harsh realities, like Chris Hedges said, “To emotionally accept impending disaster, to attain the gut-level understanding that the power elite will not respond rationally to the devastation of the ecosystem, is as difficult to accept as our own mortality. The most daunting existential struggle of our time is to ingest this awful truth—intellectually and emotionally—and continue to resist the forces that are destroying us”. A gradual change of our ways will surely be better than to crash head-on against the impending doom which lurks over the horizon. I don’t want to live in a world filled with violence and oppression as the powerful fight to secure resources and their wellbeing at the expense of everyone else’s.

We the people are the only ones who can fix this planet out of whack yet most of us could care less about the state of the environment. I understand that most of us are busy with the daily grind of life but we will have to face this problem regardless if we care about it, or know about it. We will not be able to ignore it for much longer and those who don’t care today will be forced to care at some point in the not-so-distant future as the freak weather patterns, the powerful storms, the earthquakes, the floods, the droughts, and the chaos keeps mounting higher and higher. We need to understand that we are fighting for our very survival and we need to wake up and fight before it is too late, no one is exempt form this struggle and we will all have to face the consequences. Sadly some people need to get punched in the face in order to know they are in a fight. I hate to be the one that paints the grim picture, but things are not okay and they will continue to get worse if we fail to act. Our consumption levels keep rising, CO2 levels keep rising, temperatures keep rising. Our crisis is not only environmental, it is also political, economic, spiritual, and as these crisis converge the outcome could be a world totally out of control. It’s the disenfranchised, the poor, the weak, who will first suffer the consequences of a world gone awry but we will all eventually succumb to despair, for all of our grievances are connected. We are truly one species and any injustice, famine, poverty or death, chips away at our humanity and we all suffer the consequences. what will it take to wake us up? Humanity is headed straight over a cliff and instead of changing our course we have accelerated towards it, we continue to fuel our own demise. Why can’t we see the suicidal path we are on? Where do we draw the line and say enough? We can’t afford to keep applying quick fixes. Rather than addressing the symptoms which arise we need to address the real underlaying issues and attempt to eradicate the problem at its source. We need substantial, transformative, systemic changes.

“Up to now, much of the debate over the environment has had the character of monkey chatter amongst the withering leaves of a dying tree–the leaves representing specific, isolated problems… very few of us have been paying attention to the environment’s trunk and branches. They are deteriorating as a result of processes about which there is little or no controversy; and the thousands of individual problems that are the subject of so much debate are, in fact, manifestations of systemic errors that are undermining the foundations of society.”

-Karl-Henrik Robert

Other Thoughts

I don’t think over-population is our major threat but rather the wastes and inefficiencies within our systems. There is enough for everyone on this planet and enough is plenty, like Gandhi said, “the world has enough for everyone’s needs, but not enough for everyone’s greed.” We live in a finite planet, and we have to learn to live within the limits of our world. We are not wiser than nature, and no new technology will save us or grant us free and unlimited energy, that’s not how the Universe works, there is no such thing as a free lunch. I don’t think the answer lies in space either, no matter how much faith you have on astronauts and space colonization, we have an intricate relationship with this one precious blue marble and we need to take care of it. We need to build a unified planet and the Internet gives me hope that a truly global community is attainable.

But in our race to globalize we lost touch with the local community. We need to find ways to organize ourselves more efficiently by reaping the benefits of a globalized world but also developing locally. Like Bill McKibben explained, “Local economies would demand fewer resources and cause less ecological disruption; they would be better able to weather coming shocks; they would allow us to find a better balance between the individual and the community, and hence find extra satisfaction.” By going local we could better provide clean food and water, community and a sense of belonging, education, and most importantly connection and love. I think survival for the Human species lies in small-scale self sustainable communities, but that doesn’t mean we have to live isolated and alone like in the past. We can all be connected through the internet to a globalized world where we could travel and visit other communities freely. It’s still possible to dream.

Like i’ve discussed in other posts, we all can do something to alleviate this problem: We need to learn to Live Simply so that others can Simply live. Our insane levels of consumption are destroying us, they are both environmentally and socially damaging and better lives and a better environment can be found by reducing consumption.

We need to recognize the planet as a living biological entity which provides our nourishment and sustains our health then build a new relationship with its living, breathing, creation system. We need to return to nature. We need to return to the sacred.

“As scientists, many of us have had profound experiences of awe and reverence before the universe. We understand that what is regarded as sacred is more likely to be treated with care and respect. Our planetary home should be so regarded. Efforts to safeguard and cherish the environment need to be infused with a vision of the sacred.”

-Union of Concerned Scientists,

Preserving and Cherishing the Earth: An Appeal for Joint Commitment in Science and Religion

Gaian Connection: Our Relationship With The Living Biological Planet we Call Home

(PART 1)

The timing for this post feels just right due to the latest tragedy in The Phillipines brought upon by Typhoon Haiyan, which by the way, was the largest typhoon to touch down on earth since recorded history. All unsolved issues will re-appear at some point if they are not confronted and resolved. Today, we are confronting the realities of a lack of care for the natural environment and a century of ever increasing exploitation of our finite natural resources. We live inside worlds of our own making, huge cities all over the world that make us marvel at the incredible might and power of humanity and our ability to shape and alter the environment. We created bubbles of human made environments which isolate us from nature with virtual worlds and concrete but this isolation comes at a cost. Our disconnection from the land is taking its toll on humanity and over time we have slowly become estranged from the source of it all. We ignore the fact that we are biological beings made form this earth, and as such, are dependent on clean air and water, on rich and uncontaminated soils, and on the complex and mixed biodiversity that makes up the matrix of life. 

To give a little perspective I’m going to quote James Gustave Speth who in his book The Bridge at the Edge of the World describes in detail the crisis we now face: 

“Half the worlds’s tropical and temperate forests are now gone. The rate of deforestation in the tropics continues at about an acre a second. About half the wetlands and a  third of the mangroves are gone. An estimated 90 percent of the large predator fish are gone, and 75 percent of marine fisheries are now overfished or fished to capacity. Twenty percent of the corals are gone, and another 20 percent severely threatened. Species are disappearing at rates about a thousand times faster than normal. The planet has not seen such a spasm of extinction in sixty-five million years, since the dinosaurs disappeared. Over half the agricultural land in drier regions suffers from some degree of deterioration and desertification. Persistent toxic chemicals can now be found by the dozens in essentially each and every one of us….. Everywhere earth’s ice fields are melting.There are over two hundred dead zones in the ocean due to over fertilization. Freshwater withdrawals doubled globally between 1960 and 2000, and are now over half of accessible runoff. The following rivers no longer reach the oceans in the dry season: the Colorado, Yellow, Ganges, and Nile, among others.”

But despite these harsh realities we madly drive on ignoring all the warning signals and ignoring the voices of those throughout the world who have been telling us for ages that the planet is alive and we are slowly destroying it. We forget that our current civilization is only about a couple hundred years old and while it has provided great things for humanity maybe this isn’t the best way, and it is certainly not the only way to do things. Maybe industrial civilization can become sustainable, which I think is unlikely, but one thing is for certain; we can no longer afford to continue with “business as usual”, we need radical change. If we wish to avoid calamity and chaos, we need fundamental changes to our world. We stand at a critical point, or like the great Carl Sagan said “a branch point”, in history. What we do today will have huge impacts on the future of our species. How we decide to respond to our current crisis will mean everything. We have several options: We can fall into resignation and think all is lost, we can join the religious and say to ourselves that everything is in god’s hands, we can join the deniers and think there is no problem to deal with, we can join those who think that everything will be alright somehow if we just muddle through our issues, we can join those who want to pass the puck along and deflect the problems to future generations or to those who live in parts of the world most affected by climate change. Or, you can join the solutionists who think that our problems can be fixed and that answers can and must be found. We each have the power, individually and collectively, to change the world and our generation can transform this planet. Be courageous and have heart because we might be our species last opportunity to change and adapt before it becomes another failed evolutionary attempt and our passage through the wonderful miracle of life is discontinued. To make this change happen it’s essential that we re-connect with nature and re-learn to cherish life, all life, for the gift that it truly is. We have to come to the realization that the planet is not a dead rock floating through space, but rather a living biological entity, just like you and I, and our survival is dependent on it.

We Are The Earth

Human beings, along with all other living organisms who have evolved through time, are dependent on this planet for survival. We were born from the Earth and Its the planet that breeds people not the other way around. We are not born into the world, we are born out of the world and recognizing this subtle change in the use of language can makes a world’s difference. We have to stop treating the planet like we are not a part of it. We have forgotten where our food, air and water comes from. We don’t pay attention to the destination of our garbage and waste. There is no question that human beings hold a special purpose in planet earth. I think there is a reason we are the dominant species and have evolved further than all other life forms. We have thinking brains which grant us the capacity to imagine and create, to project our thoughts and to shape and influence the physical world, altering reality. Maybe our sole purpose and the reason we were granted dominion over the earth was so we could nurture and protect life, the single greatest miracle in the universe and the reason for it all. I don’t think we were put here just to consume, treating the planet like a buffet restaurant for us to feast off of eternally, continually feeding our pleasures and vices. Sometimes we forget that as a species we hold huge amounts of power and our might is such that our actions have an effect on the entire environment of our planet. All things on Earth are interconnected and our actions have consequences that ripple through the systems which we are a part off. This entails a great sense of responsibility and we must be much more careful given the amount of power we have. “With great power comes great responsibility” and if SpiderMan grew into this understanding so could we.

“The stars, Earth, stones, life of all kinds, form a whole in relation to each other and so close is this relationship that we cannot understand a stone without some understanding of the great sun. No matter what we touch, an atom or a cell, we cannot explain it without knowledge of the universe. The laws governing the universe can be made interesting and wonderful to children, more interesting than things in themselves, and they begin to ask: What am I? What is the task of humanity in this wonderful universe?

-Maria Montessori, To Educate the Human Potential

 

Techno Junkies

Very Interesting Zen Pencil Comic about the addictive properties of technology. I found it to be sadly sort of true. Social Media turned us all into reality tv stars. Everything we do, our entire lives are showcased for the virtual world to see. We measure success and popularity with likes and page hits, but what does it all mean? What sort of effects is this having in our lives? In our brains? I don’t know, time will tell if this is a good or bad thing. But what I do know is that we have to be careful with technology as it permeates deeper into our lives. Is it good to be under the spotlight at all times, always exposed? Where do we draw the line? Internet addiction is becoming an increasing problem in many parts of the world so be aware and use it but don’t abuse it. While we all like to connect and share with others in this virtual realm we can’t forget that life, the real thing, is not in these little computer screens and machines but out there. We need to step away from the screens and go out into the world, experience, and do the things we love. It’s crucial that we push the electronic bullshit aside, give it a break, and take a breath.  One last thing, don’t do things for likes, it seems sort of shallow. We don’t need other people to tell us that what we are doing is cool. The important thing is that we like it, the rest doesn’t matter.

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The Other Side

Talking about death makes people very anxious. That’s if you ever manage to talk about it. Most of the time it isn’t until someone you know passes away that any discussion on death takes place. You are forced to confront it when it hits close to home. In a way I understand why people don’t want to talk about it, it’s sort of a downer subject. But talking is the best therapy, and when death hits close to home, as it sure will at some point, it won’t hit as hard if you had previously acknowledged this sad, grim but all too real aspect of life. Even if its in a small way, talking will helps us deal with death when we have to face it.

You ever wonder what happens when you die and cross over into the other side? We go through life thinking we know what the fuck is going on, thinking there is a certain order and structure to things when in reality we have no idea how or why things go. We have no idea  what this crazy experience we call life is really all about, and we are even more clueless when it comes to death. When or if we move on is a mystery to us all and no one knows what will happen. I certainly don’t know, religious people don’t know, gurus and politicians don’t know, even the wisest among us don’t know. Everyone has ideas and suppositions but the best ideas are just guesses, no one truly knows the meaning of things, no one knows where it is that we go when we pass. The truth is that no one has ever come back from the other side to tell us about it.

Maybe, if you were a pious and good person, you take the conventional route and go up to heaven where you will rejoice in the presence of god and live in angelic harmony and eternal peace. Maybe, if you were a bad and naughty person who “sinned” repeatedly,  just the opposite could be true and you end up experiencing physical and physiological torture for eternity as you burn in hell. That sounds discouraging but whether we take the ladder to heaven or the highways to hell is is a mystery. I think it’s possible that your fate, decided at the moment of judgment the day you die, depends on how you lived your life. Maybe you are re-born into an other life, where you placement depends on your actions in you past life. If you do good then each life gets progressively better and this way you keep moving forward, growing and evolving a little more in each life. Maybe you simply cease to exist and you experience eternal-solitary-dark-nothingness. Shit, for all we know, maybe this life is just a heaven and hell for another reality in some other world. Sounds crazy but who the fuck knows. 

You can believe in any story you like,  but remember them for what they are, stories. They are just guesses of what might happen, things we tells ourselves in order to make sense of things we can’t truly grasp and comprehend. It’s the same with religious teachings they are just stories and it’s okay to believe in them, especially if they help you to be a better person. I personally don’t do good things because I expect to be rewarded in the next life just like I don’t’ avoid doing negative shit because i’m afraid of going to hell. I do choose to good because it’s good. Period, that’s enough for me. Doing good things brings you closer to god, the life force of this universe, not when you get to heaven and not in the next life, but in this life.  

 Not knowing the meaning of life doesn’t take away from the fact that life, even with its hardship s and sufferings, is truly a beautiful, wonderful and miraculous experience. The uncertainty associated with death can make people incredibly afraid. What a strange predicament us humans are in, we live knowing we are going to die. We are blessed with our intelligent and powerful minds and at the same time cursed, not only to die, but to know we must, we are conscious of our temporary existence. But I think knowing we are going to die makes the lucky ones because in order to die you have to be alive first. Knowing we will some day die should motivate us to make the most of our experience here on earth. 

Life and Death are two subjects that are beyond our understanding. So why do we spend so much time stressing about it, dreading and fearing it? isn’t it senseless if you can’t prevent it? It comes natural for human beings to look for reasons and answers, but i think that sometimes the secret is to live without the answers. In part, it’s the mysteries of life that give it its magic and life is better when it’s magical. 

To wrap this up, what we do in this life might have some sort of influence in our next lives, i like to believe this, but i’m not really sure about it. But what i do know with a certainty is that we have some say in this life, the one we are currently living. Like William Henley said in his wonderful poem, we are the masters of our fate and the captains of our souls. We should worry and preoccupy ourselves with that which we can control, ourselves, and worry about our development and progress. You can spend your life as you think you should, in any way you want, but remember that your life is an example for others to see. Remember that your life could be the most fantastic adventure. Our lives can be one epic journey. Don’t let the fear of death bring you down and consume you, rather, let death be your companion and take it with you everywhere you go. Let death be your life long reminder that you are here on this earth to LIVE. Our purpose is to be alive, so let death motivate you to truly and fully live your life. Like always, keep growing, in the light direction. 

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“Death is the indispensable ingredient in having to believe. Without the awareness of death everything is ordinary, trivial, It is only because death is stalking us that the world is an unfathomable mystery. Without an awareness of the presence of our death there is no power, no mystery.”

 

“My interest has been to convince you that you must assume responsibility for being here, in this marvellous world, in this marvelous desert, in this marvelous time. I want to convince you that you must learn to make every act count, since you are going to be here for only a short while, in fact, too short for witnessing all the marvels of it.”

-Carlos Castaneda, The Teaching of Don Juan

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How the City Speaks

What would walls say if they could speak? What sort of secrets lie hidden between the bricks? 

It sounds crazy but walls actually can speak, and often do. Well, It’s not really walls that do the speaking, they retain messages created by people who use walls to communicate. Here lies the wonderful and magical aspect of Street art, it allows city walls to speak and deliver messages for the eyes of onlookers.Walk through the streets of any major city in any part of the world and you will quickly realize that the walls of the city say many things. There is the usual political bullshit, the curse words, and the dick drawings but every once in a while you glimpse surreal drawings, amazing graffiti, or beautiful phrases. This truly creative and genius work, not done for money or recognition, but rather to express the artist’s innermost creative impulses, where the joy and reward is found in the creation itself, is the sort of of creative work I admire and look for when I walk along the city streets.

Accion Poetia, which translates into Poetic Action, is a cultural and poetic movement founded by Mexican Poet Armando Alanis Pulido. The idea behind the movement is to paint phrases and fragments of poetry on walls across the city. What began in 1996 in Monterrey, Mexico, quickly spread, and the beautiful and poetic lines now adorn walls all across Latin America and other parts of the world. The content, mostly made up of love verses and optimistic phrases, is a beautiful way to express feelings and emotions and turn all those willing into artists. Onlookers are captivated by the beautiful and powerful phrases that make them reflect or simply help to brighten up their days. I wish more people would take to this and pick up brushes and paint, find the empty and blank, and transform the plain and ugly into alive and beautiful. 

At the end of the day, what you put out into the world is completely up to you. You can go up to a wall with a marker and draw curse words or dicks, or you can create wonderful, imaginative and beautiful things. You can spread ignorance or bliss, love or hate. It’s all up to you. But remember that what you put into out into the world will come back to you in some way, shape, or form. Instead of spreading around bullshit, I urge you to spread positiveness, truth, and love. Only by shining our light can we light up the darkness. LIke always, keep growing, In the LIGHT direction. 

 I’ll post a gallery of my favorite phrases. Check it out.

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“WHILE THERE IS LIFE, THERE WILL BE HOPE”

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“A BIG HEART IS FILLED WITH VERY LITTLE”

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“I DON’T HAVE THE STRENGTH TO GIVE UP”

 

 

 

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We can be SuperHeroes

Growing up I was fascinated with superheroes. I wanted to be the one fighting crime in the name of justice, the one standing up against oppression, the one who rescued the damsel in distress, and the one fighting to save the world. The admiration I had for those high flying, acrobatic, evil butt-kicking, super powered fighters still holds to this day. Now that I’m older I’ve realized that super powers don’t exist, that punches hurt, that bullets kill, that injustices sometimes go unanswered, and that you don’t always get the girl. Our world doesn’t need fictional superheroes with unrealistic superpowers, we need real, living, mortal, human heroes. I’ve read about some and I’ve seen others. I met some and I even have the pleasure of personally knowing some of them. This world is full of these great and admirable men and women who are real life superheroes. We can all be superheroes by emulating and upholding the values which they stand for and we admire. Be noble, be courageous, be righteous, be strong, be kind, be admirable. We can all join the forces of good and fight to make this world a better place. I’m taking on the challenge, I’m fighting evil and darkness, not only in the world but also within myself. I hope you have the courage and strength to do as well. 

The following is a collection of illustrations by Adam Thompson. In his words, “Re-purposing the artwork of Jim Lee, Francis Manapul, and some others, along with my own, and combining it with my usual minimalistic style, I’ve developed this project spotlighting some quotes from these heroes that can inspire us all daily. Enjoy!”

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Who’s streets? Consumerism and the I-phone Mania

Hello conscious and rational human beings out there. Can anyone else see the madness in this?? 

People spending days and weeks camped out to purchase a new i-phone is insane. I would be upset if it was any other company, this has nothing to do with apple, I have friends who work at Apple and even have a mac computer at home but this video highlights a lot of things which are wrong in our societies. To me, it is sad and irrational that it is perfectly okay to camp out for weeks on the streets waiting for a new i-phone but if you want to camp out in the streets to send out messages of defiance, messages against consumerist culture, messages of care for the natural environment, messages of revolution, message of change, messages of love, then you are removed with force or with the threat of force, you are beaten away from the streets or sent to prison. It is critical for a healthy democracy to have open public spaces for people to gather in. Like Evelyn Beatrice Hall said in her biography of Voltaire, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”. You can disagree with the Occupy movement but one thing is for sure: they understood the truth about the streets. The truth is that the streets don’t belong to any authority, they don’t belong to corporations, they don’t belong to anyone in particular, the streets belong to the public, the streets belong to the people. The people involved in the Occupy movement understood and exercised their rights to freedom of speech. They occupied public spaces to speak their truths and share and discuss things which truly mattered to them. But in this crazy world we live in, it is sometimes “illegal” to stand up for what is right. Like Voltaire wisely said, “It is dangerous to be right, when the government is wrong”