Archive for January, 2017

Your place

Posted: January 31, 2017 in Uncategorized

The words put in your place were used in a meeting. Of course the negative connotation associated with the idiom made me take pause. I believe the words “I had to put him in his place” were used and I did my best not to cringe at the words.

Usually the words “put in your place” mean to humble someone.  I think that humility is certainly a virtue worth pursuing  but it is a concern when someone works toward bringing humility on another person. See it is not often that we can make someone humble without exalting ones self.

If it is possible to put someone in their place while still exhibiting humility then there are no problems with putting someone in their place, but deontological ethics coupled with the virtues of Aristotle should prevent someone from harming another persons ego and pursuing anything less than humility.

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Pride is a powerful tool but it is also a very dangerous one.

 Hermann J Steinherr quotes 

For me a good rule of thumb is to, do no harm. Work hard to do good for anyone and everyone and stay humble and proud.

peace

john3c

 

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A huge contrast 

Posted: January 29, 2017 in Uncategorized
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This week in church the preacher was on week 2 of a study in the book Ecclesiastes.  I am not sure what religion you are reader but, this book can be a big bummer. The book starts with the author explaining how life is all vanity and basically a worthless endeavor. Obviously the preacher could not end the sermon last week on this note. It is poor practice to leave a congregation without hope from the sacred texts, so our preacher alluded to the end of the book of Ecclesiastes and mentioned how the book ends on a hopeful note. The book ends with the author mentions how service to God gives life purpose. The preacher mentioned how, every study of the book needs to have the end included and the end is a good one.  As soon as he made mention of the end being a good one I thought about the movie, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel.

The movie was a wonderful film. If you haven’t seen the movie yet stop reading and go watch it.  The protagonist in the movie was in the middle of some great conflict, his hotel and dream was on the ropes and when reminded of his dire circumstance he let everyone know that in the end it will all work out. This perspective is so important to take on. Everyday we will face some conflict and when it is over everything will turn out fine.

Everything will be all right in the end. If it’s not all right, it is not yet the end”……. Patel, Hotel Manager, The Best Exotic Marigold

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Peace

john3c

 

This year in the United States the president campaigned and his campaign was full of hate and fear one statement that was very troubling for me was one in which he said that “The American Dream is dead”. The phrase American Dream was coined  in 1931 by the popular writer and historian James Turslow Adams and it refers to the upward mobility of people in the United States of America.

“that dream of a land in which life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement. It is a difficult dream for the European upper classes to interpret adequately, and too many of us ourselves have grown weary and mistrustful of it. It is not a dream of motor cars and high wages merely, but a dream of social order in which each man and each woman shall be able to attain to the fullest stature of which they are innately capable, and be recognized by others for what they are, regardless of the fortuitous circumstances of birth or position.” — James Turslow Adams

Just recently I listened to a podcast from Freakenomics radio that was all about the American dream.  For me the major takeaway from the podcast was, that the American Dream is not dead it is merely elusive and if society works together it can become revived again and available for all.

As I listened to the podcast I thought about dreams. What is a dream, obviously there is the concept of images and stories we are treated to while sleeping and then there is the aspirations, vision, hope an ideal. The Everly Brothers sang the song “All I have to Do is Dream”. In the song the brothers sang about a girl that they were infatuated with and in their dreams she was theirs the only problem was they were dreaming their life away. Martin Luther King Jr. was famous for his I have a dream speech. In his speech Martin Luther dreamed of a nation that was desegregated, were children of all skin colors played together and learned together. It maybe irony that a major way to promote and foster upward mobility in a United States city is through racial and economic desegregation. The more mixed a city is the more well off the children of the city will be. Atlanta GA is highly segregated and the lack of upward mobility in that city is at an all time high.

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What is your dream? Is it James Turslows Adams dream, Martin luther King Jrs., The Everly Brothers? What are you doing to accomplish your dream? See the strange thing about all three of these dreams is this; to accomplish these dreams you must think about someone other than yourself and act in the interests of someone other than yourself. A society where upward mobility is evident cannot have segregation and racism run rampant as it is today, a society in which children of all colors are playing and living in peace has no room for racism, and  the desires of a would be paramour must be achieved through going out of ones way to make life better for the love interest.

I guess my takeaway from my meandering thoughts this am or my daydreaming is that dreams can become a reality if they are fostered with love for others and dreams will die when we only care for and help ourselves.

Happy dreams everyone

Peace

john3c

 

Yesterday, I did not write a blog post. I wish that I could, honestly say that, I was involved in something really important and could not be torn away to write a post but that would be a lie. The truth is that, I simply forgot about writing a post. I really enjoy making a daily post on this blog. It is almost therapeutic for me. If you have read any of the posts you know that they are mostly the ramblings of a crazy person, so when I realized I forgot I began to wonder about forgetfulness and what causes it to happen. Why do we forget.

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Come on now you forget things too, appointments, meetings, medicine, kids at school we have all been there. Why does it happen. It seems that neuro-scientists also wonder about why humans forget or cannot recall things. The scientists have written studies about human brains and how memory works. One study was highlighted in a Scientific American article. The article is pretty interesting but I’ve forgotten most of it already, ha, I haven’t. The bottom line for me and this article was that, the human memory is amazing but we have trouble with the retrieval system. So it’s not my brain its me getting in the way of my brain. This kind of lines up with the benefits of entering meditative states and clearing ones mind and calming ones mind. Life can be overwhelming and when it gets this way we may have the tendency to forget things but we probably haven’t forgotten them we merely have to much “stuff” gong on and need to take some deep breaths clear our heads and then maybe we will remember what we believe we have forgotten.

Image result for meditative state calming one's mind

Breathing is important for our lives. If we don’t breath we cannot live that is why most meditations start with focusing on ones breathing.  Life is complicated, confusing and at times overwhelming but it is lived one breath at a time. If you began to feel overwhelmed confused complicated I would encourage you to, take some deep breaths and focus on the important things. If you find that the state of confusion does not go away you may need some medical attention and I encourage you to seek it. The stigma around medical attention for anxiety and depression is terrible and anyone who promotes it is awful. If you need help you should get it or if a family member or friend needs help you should encourage them while they seek it. Take time today and everyday to focus on what really matters and see how better you life can and will be.

peace

john3c

 

Enough 

Posted: January 20, 2017 in Uncategorized
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Ok, its confession time for me, I have a reading problem. The problem I have with reading is not one of ability or inability but of not having enough time to read all the literature I would like to read. I am currently reading one book on my kindle another hardback and I have one book on the nightstand next to the bed. The nightstand and my amazon shopping cart serve as a sort of reading queue. As I mentioned I have one on the night stand and 3 in my Amazon shopping cart. You know that you use the shopping cart as a queue too. I wonder how often the cart is used as a queue I bet it is frequent and numerous . Currently one book in my queue, that I cannot wait to read is, “Strong is the New Beautiful” Embrace Your Natural Beauty, Eat Clean, and Harness Your Power” by Lindsey Vonn.

Lindsey Vonn is the most successful United States downhill skier in the history of the sport and when asked about her book she admitted that even at the height of her popularity she struggled with insecurity.  She made mention to having the feeling that she was not enough and it was this struggle and her overcoming this struggle that prompted her to write the book. So have you put this book in you cart yet?

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I cannot wait to rad her book! She also made mention to how females can fall into the trap of comparing themselves to one another and loosing the important sense of worth. See, the thing is this; everyone is special and beautiful even the biggest monsters I can think of deserve some respect and have the potential to do great things. For me the best way to stay secure is to understand not only my beauty and potential but also that of my neighbor and even the potential of my enemies. It is my neighbor and own potential that bring me security and the potential of my enemies to do good that bring me hope.

peace

john 3c

 

 

Water and fluidity

Posted: January 19, 2017 in Uncategorized
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I was writing a paper for a class on film and had to do some research into the Wachowskis. The duo created the Matrix franchise and directed all the movies in the Matrix franchise. I did not realize until I did my research that the Wachowsky brothers were now the Wachowsky sisters. Formerly Larry and Andy the two are now Lana and Lily. The duo are still the same people they have merely transitioned from the gender they were born with. Gender is fluid, identity to one gender or another is something that does not seem to be “hard coded”. Some are uncomfortable discussing this fluidity but they should not be. See as I get older I realize that almost all of life is fluid. Concepts that at once seemed “hardened” when studied and applied in practice to life become far more pliable and fluid. There was an author on a radio talk show discussing how language works and promoting his book. The book is, “Words on the Move: Why English Won’t – and Can’t – Sit Still (Like, Literally)” and the author is John McWorther. The book and the author explain how language is a changing and living thing and how when we correct someone about their use of the language we are often stopping progress. If everybody understands the word it is not the wrong word, this is how language works. Language is, as most systems are, fluid.

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When I think of fluidity I imagine water and a stream. The water moves in the stream towards the ocean. It changes course and cuts new paths but it is always moving towards the ocean. Humanity moves towards sublime perfection, we cut new paths, make new languages, systems but we are always moving toward enlightenment. puddles and ponds that are not moving towards the ocean dry up and evaporate. They disappear and eventually become part of the movement back to the ocean. I like to think it is the same way with society. Those who hate and resist things they do not understand will evaporate and go away only to be swept up again in the fluid motion. I want to be a positive part of the fluid nature of society and not a stagnant part.

 

peace

john3c

 

Why Gryffindor

Posted: January 18, 2017 in Uncategorized
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I just finished reading the JK Rowling book “The Chamber of Secrets”. The book was incredible, seriously I loved this story. The story starts with our protagonist Harry Potter in his second year of school at the wizard school named Hogwarts. Harry is in 7th grade and I think 12 or 13 years old. The hero is dealing with being a wizard, an adolescent and puberty. Puberty brings with it millions of questions, one big question from puberty is that of identity. Who are we and what matters to us we develop and refine our identities throughout our life but puberty really jump starts this and can create an identity crisis.

Harry has a bit of an identity crisis and wonders if he is capable and destined to do evil and the answer comes to Harry through the guidance of a wise old wizard and the school administrator Albus Dumbledore.

Image result for It is our choices, harry, that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities

The worlds from this Young adult book are so profound! Man JK Rowlings has truly created a masterpiece. But, children and adults alike would do well to know that; we are defined by our choices, actions and inactions. Could have and almost did don’t matter. All potential that is not used or realized is meaningless.

So, do you want to feel good about yourself? Do you want to know who you are? Well, get out there and do some good things for people. In the book “The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy”, the secret to life is the number 42 and while this is funny it is not right. Doing good for others,  that’s the answer to life. Our actions that’s what truly determines our identity and worth. Do good today.

Peace

john3c