dal niente

Month: February, 2007

Report Card

So, here’s my self evaluation of the last few midterms I did.  My general method of writing papers and final exams is like a hobo fight for the last peice of bread.  My standards are low– but my point is, I still get the bread.

For British Literature:
First section– Short Term Description– Chose 10 out of 11 of the folowing terms.

(Ohhhhhhh shit. I sorta answer 5, and make up an answer which I pull out of my ass for a 6th)

Second section– Short Essay Answers– Chose 6 out of 7 of the following questions and respond in a short essay.

(Ohhhhhhhhh shit. I sorta answer 3 questions, then make up shit for 2 more.)

Estimated Grade = Probably something way under 40%.
Class average = C
Returned Grade = D+ !!

That’s right! I barely filled out half the exam and I beat 15 of my classmates who wrote the entire exam and still got F!


Introduction to Ethics

Teacher’s comments:

  • “Your writing is a pleasure and your examples  + experiences are both thought provoking and interesting.”
  • “You clearly understand the ethtical theories under consideration (exception : narcissism)”
  • “You only submitted 7 entries out of 10, but excellent work on what you submitted”
  • “Final Grade= A     / But Late by 2 days / So Final Mark Reduced to C”
  • “Hand your work in on time next time!”

—- Update:
For the ethics class, the teacher asked me to stay after class because she was “Very Upset” that I got a C and that she thinks losing marks for my reasons are stupid when it’s obvious I can handle the material, so she’ll see how I do on the midterm test and maybe she’ll give me back my A.  (CHING CHING! lol)

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I’m not young enough to know everything

… so when I get to people who have an answer to everything I think there’s one of three things.

1) This person is too young for me to go get a good answer anyway.
2) This person is not too young, but in effect, is trying to play me with smooth talk.
3) This person is God.

In case number 1, note that this doesn’t mean you can’t learn anything even if you don’t get your question answered the way you want.  (On a side note: if you want your question answered a certain way, why are you even asking in the first place?)

In case number 2, note that this doesn’t mean you can’t learn anything
even if you don’t get your question answered the way you want.  (On a
side note: if you want your question answered a certain way, why are
you even asking in the first place?)

In case number 3, you should probably lock this person away. Because someone who has all the answers will lead to the destruction of human autonomy and dignity.

Or, you know, if it was a bunch of simple question, maybe they just simply know the answer.

The answers are related to the questions. So in effect, I think a large part of finding out what you want to know is formulating your questions in the right way.  And this is a tough thing– this is where communication comes in, and language.  It is thus usually more difficult for you to get an answer out of someone who doesn’t speak the same language as you.  This could mean in written or verbal form, but it’s not limited to that– for example, the physical language of jazz ballet is significantly different from that of break dancing.

In that sense, language is the mechanics of communication of information.

A note I should add though is that language is not only useful to communicate with extrinsic people.  Language is also necessary to understand oneself.

You can hear a lot of stories about homosexuals for example who only within the last few decades have made significant strides into coming to terms with their own identities.  Though homosexuality is not something that simply ‘didn’t exist’ prior to a few decades ago, nevermind the social perception, but homosexuals themselves might not have been able to identify themselves simply because they didn’t have the vocabulary or the mechanics by which to ask questions about themselves.

In the same sense, “sexual harassment” never existed until a few decades ago– prior to that, the vocabulary never existed, and yet, sexual harassment was very real and it did cause damage.

The sense is that if a  Time Traveller went back to the medieval ages, took out a S & W Magnum .357 and just blasted holes through a cavalier’s breastplate, the fact that the unwitting victim doesn’t understand bullets or gunpowder doesn’t change the fact that they can hurt him.

And so it becomes necessary to strive to understand.  To develop vocabularies.  Understand the mechanics of things.

And of course, we live in a mostly safe society (at least, I assume this if you have free access to internet to read this) that we don’t really need to know things to protect ourselves explicitly from harm or death. And in fact, knowing what a bullet is and what gunpowder is doesn’t change the fact that getting shot in the chest is probably going to hurt muchly.

My point though is that given a situation of neutrally maintained opposition between you and your environment, you need to attempt to gain something by which you can have a chance at taking initiative.  You need aces up your sleeves, even if you may not be able to, or even if you chose not to, use them.

And to know everything?

People who use the ‘truth’ are suspicious at best.

And I do use the word truth quite a bit.  These things that I say are what I beleive.  But part of the reason why I write things down is to track my progress– and in that sense, my truth yesterday, yesteryear, may be different from what it is on the dawn of the morrow.

This is what ‘truth’ is to me.  It is not pure truth– it is, in a sense, a mixture of objectivity and pravda.

The only times you may think it is ‘real’ truth is because my confidence in it tends to crush yours.  (Sorry about that.)  But make no mistake– I don’t have the answer.  I am just like you, I am trying to word my questions so I’ll get better answers.  You can do all that I do– I am not so special, you are not so ordinary.

Thoughts

My recovry routine consists of:

  • 1 small ice pack which I alternate on sore muscles
  • 1 rolling pin, which I use to ‘iron’ sore muscles
  • lots of stretching
  • lots of orange juice
  • lots of chocolate milk
  • moderate amounts of protein
  • Xanga
  • probably not enough sleep.

I think perhaps i should work on the not enough sleep part, it seems like the best idea to get stuff in gear.

Notes on recovery:
Sometimes, when I’m rubbing the ice in, I actually catch myself gritting my teeth.
Oftentimes, I’m not injured, but I just find that I end up sleeping more if I’ve been doing a lot of energy (cardio) draining work.
Someone tried to massage my arm lately and found that I had really tense muscles, and he asked me if they hurt. I was rather shocked… I mean, well, I don’t THINK i’m hurting, but maybe I’ve become desensitized to it?  Maybe I should go to the jacuzzi at the Y more often.

Notes on recovery:
!@*$*!@$ ICE! I hate icing sore muscles, it just…. gah! It makes me shiver and it makes me want to scream.

General notes on “training”:
I want to try Kendo.

What order did my activities come in? Hmm… First it was volleyball, then it was kickboxing, then it was grappling and MMA, then it was badminton.  I think the next logical progression is probably Kendo.  The reason being that my physical activities tend to focus more on ‘decisive moves’… and I don’t think it gets more decisive than getting your head lopped off by a sword. (Even if it is just a wooden training sword.)

I’m developing an increasing fascination with making the “right move” in a situation of chaos.

Random fact: Did you know that the Canadian Armed forces motto for recruitment is “Fight fear, fight despair, fight chaos”?

I look at the reserves application brochures and they really make it look to be something really cool.

Call me selfish but I don’t really think joining the reserves is a good idea.

… I digress. Those were my thoughts for the day.

The Smart Kid

“And it was then that the First decided to break ties with the Sudends.  Four days after the massacre at Balifor…”

“Five days.  Five days, it took him.”

“Five days after the massacre at Bailfor, the First left the ranks of the Valentians, and start his new country.  He gathered five hundred and thirty-two men, six hundred and and seventry-three women…”

“Thirty-seven.  Six hundred and thirty-seven.”

The teenager rolled his eyes, letting a sigh escape his lips.  He ran his hand through his hair scratched behind his ear, which was a habit he had when he was getting bored.  The pause wasn’t long, but he felt felt the instructor stop pacing directly behind him.  Quickly, he sat up extra straight, cleared his throat and resumed.

“He gathered five hundred and thirty-two men, six hundred and thirty-seven women, all portsfolk who were skilled in the ways of the sea and shore.  Many of those who had joined the First were also Valentian mariners, who also viewed the strife of the Sudends with distaste.  They would be the cheifs of the First’s, sent forth to start the Great Twenty-Two. By the time the First had travelled from the south to the north of the Sudends, he had a caravan of thirty-seven…”

“Thirty-six.”

“… A caravan of thirty-six ships, all those of the sea and shore to start the North Country.”

“Thank you, Jaelar.   Ragnar,  you continue.”

Another boy, this one slouched over his desk at the front end of the room, sat up straight, cleared his throat and began to speak.

“On the seventh moon of firstyear, at the break of dawn, from the port of Sheppon, the First and the his followers prepared to leave the Sudends for good.  However, the Valentian army was not pleased at the defection of some of its finest navel fighters– many of the Firsts’ crew had joined him with their entire crews, including their ships and equipment.  The Valentians had labeled the First as a leader of pirates, him and all of his people as treasonous.  But since the First was one of the greatest men of the sea at the time, he always managed to avoid the Valentian navy.  They had broken up their ships used their woods and irons to make the first glaceursm, eighty one tweed long and twenty three tweed wide.  On the eight and a half moon of the firstyear, when the First’s followers numbered one thousand, seven hundred and sixty seven strong, the First declared the Great Search.  The Valentian army was not pleased, and…”

/*-/*-

“You’re such a show off, you know that?” said Jaelar as he lumbered up the hill towards the large autwere tree.  His classmate was lying under it, on his back with his hands folded behind his head.  The boy sat up for a moment, checking to see who it was, though he knew already from the voice. He grinned, lay back down, and continued chewing on a long  length of some root.

The sky was blue for once, which only happened in summer.  During the Septentrian winters, the sky would be white as the ground, which gave the country the nickname of the ‘white void’ to Valentian mariners.  It was said that one’s shadow was the only way to know which way was the ground.

“The teacher asked a question, I answered.”

“But you answered perfectly.”

“What do you expect? I knew the answer.  Why wouldn’t I answer perfectly?”

Jaelar fumed.  That Ragnar kid, he was always so smug.

“I challenge you to a duel!”

Ragnar sat up, frowning.  “I refuse.”  He lay back down.

Jaelar was dumbfounded.  “You can’t refuse!  This is a Septentrian law!”

“The law is for adults, Lars.  It’s for adults to decide cointoss situations.  We don’t even have a dispute.”

“You’re just afraid you’ll lose.”

“If it’s a sword duel, I *know* I’ll lose.  So what’s your point?”

“You… coward!”

Ragnar sat up, picked up an apple from his bag, and threw it at Jaelar, hitting him in the eye.  Jaelar saw the world go blank for a moment, and then it burst into electric stars.  He cried out in surprise.

“What… what Firstly was that for?!”

“You couldn’t dodge the apple, right? I’m a good shot, so I dueled you at what you weren’t good at.  I just won.  You don’t like that feeling, do you?  Don’t feel so bad.  It seemed like a good idea to me, since you were just gonna do the same.”

Jaelar’s teeth clenched.  His eye wasn’t hurt, but the area around it was certainly going to be black and blue in a few minutes.  He hated this boy.

////***

The Backhand

In badminton, the backhand is the weak side.

No matter how strong someone develops their backhand, it will always be weaker than any shots performed on the forehand side.

Of course, if we’re talking about professionals, does it even come up?  Of course it does– it’s just that they kinda make it look easy.

When I’m playing badminton, I have to ‘protect’ my backhand zone.  Don’t get caught in a situation where that weakness can be exploited.  And that’s what it is: a weakness.  When I’m out there, it’s even more apparent in singles how weak a backhand can be– because you don’t have a partner to share the burden of that zone with you.  You have to cover everything at once.  Put too much emphasis on protecting that backhand zone, and the forehand zone becomes vulnerable.

So what do you do?

You just keep going.  When a bird fliest to my backhand zone, what can I do?  That kind of shit happens.  If I planned things out right, I’ll get there in time and everything is alright.  If I’m late?  If I’m late, things get messed up.

But maybe that’s what I love about this game– surviving chaos like that.

I’ve pulled off backhand deffenses of my backhand corner with any number of on the fly emergency moves when I’m late… it just seems to all naturally happen when you really want to get to it.  I’ve been jumping, lunging, spinning 360s, skidding backwards, going clockwise, counterclockwise, cacutar smashing, whatever.  It all happens in an instant and sometimes I surprise even myself.

Backhands are a lot like the shit you have to deal with in life.

Shit wouldn’t be such a big deal if it wasn’t something that you had trouble fixing.  Shit wouldn’t be shit if it wasn’t your weaknesses.

But that’s life, right?  One big process, one big chain– and that backhand– that stuff– is your weakest link, which you defend against all attempts.  And you do so by any means possible.  Because if you don’t?  Sure. What’s 1 point out of 21?

Of course, nobody ever scores 21 points at once.  You score them points one at a time– and you can also lose them one at a time.

Now, we can spend as much time theorizing about the most efficient way to get things done– but without the fighting spirit to try and attempt to get it, there’s really nothing there waiting for you at the end of the day.  Your reflection will look boring.  Your soul will feel sleepy.

But– if you are willing to get dirty?  To get muddy?  To get bruised?  To try and fight not only to deffend attacks against your weaknesses, but to turn that table around?  If you can move forward, through such chaos, through such suffering, then you can find appreciation in all things, because when you try, you are mighty.

You want to know what my happiness was today?

A clean, new pair of socks before badminton.  A good meal with my family after badminton.  A hot shower later to get out all the filth of the gym floors burned into my knees, and the salt from my sweat out of my hair.  And now, a warm bed for my sore body.

These are simple things that I don’t need a million dollars to do, and they are things that I can appreciate…  because through trying, we gain the experiences by which we can appreciate.

There is no Mercy without Rationality, and no Mastery without Mercy

Read First: http://www.xanga.com/zao_tok/572506029/item.html

My Comments (since commenting is disabled on the linked xanga):

I’ve been reading your blog for quite a long time now and I think you have a pretty firm grasp about everything Bruce Lee ever taught.  Your writing is consistent with all the books he’s written (which like you, I’ve also read).

But I think you’re reading too deeply into his writings.  Economy of Motion is one of the principles of Jeet Kune Do… and I agree that it is only logical.  And Lee himself did address the kiai issue in numerous writings.  However just because Lee said it doesn’t mean I agree with it.  The kiai issue is, today, a non-issue.  Lee’s work was in large part reactionary, and a product of the times. He worked in an era of stereotypes and expectations– that’s why with his gritty “western” scientific approach to a domain previously dominated by eastern mysticism caught so much attention.

I don’t beleive that kiais are intrinsically a waste of energy.  They are a waste of energy if you make noise for the sake of making noise.  However, the kiai is also used as an attack.  And it can also simply be the byproduct of energy usage (not the goal of energy usage).  Depends on how you look at it, and the situation.

If all your energy was going into your screaming, that’s simply not the way it’s done. If that’s what your previous master expected, i mean, volume, then he’s mistaken as well.   There’s a difference between a kiai and screaming.  And though Lee picked on kiais in general, I beleive that if we had a chat with him he wouldn’t be against it if it was done with proper intent and expectations.

I am not attributing a mystical power to kiais, I’m simply saying that all things have their place in realistic combat if you match your input with your expected result.  If you beleive that screaming is useless, then it is useless for you.  You have found a way to fight without it.  What I’m saying is that if there were such thing as an ‘objective’ method of fighting, and we really applied Lee’s writings of efficiency and economy of motion to the very extremist, our entire combative training would consist of nothing but eye gouging, since it’s the most damage you can inflict with the least amount of effort.

But of course, eye gouges won’t work on everyone.  That’s why we end up compromising with less efficient tools, such as punches.  Maybe even kicks.  maybe even some locks.  Somewhere down the line, we might also note that, as they teach in self deffense classes for women, you get your first break when you shout ‘your lungs out’ for that sudden stunning effect that gives you a slight edge.  But I digress.  My point isn’t to validate the kiai as a ‘technique’.  My point is that though Lee’s philosophy does make a lot of sense, you mustn’t look at his lessons too deeply to the point that you miss his philosophy by getting stuck on his words.  You remember the idea: missing the moon because we’re too busy following the finger? Same idea.

Lee did emphasize the importance of being practical.  But life isn’t only about fighting.  In that sense, there are other conditions to being ‘practical’.  A man might wear stiff soled dress shoes to work, even though it would be more practical in an unexpected mugging attempt for him to have been wearing running shoes or steel toed boots.  A person might have long hair because it’s practical in the sense that it makes the person attractive and that might lead to happiness– even though long hair in a fight is a bad idea.

My point is– what you deem as practical comes with a very specific context.  What is practical for fighting may not be practical for your job, for your social life, etc. 

So what of screaming out?  For a lot of people, going to a martial arts class is about a social aspect.  Screaming out loud is part of fitting in.  As much as ‘fitting in’ comes with a lot of stigma, what’s wrong with fitting in really sometimes, just for me to play the devil’s advocate? What if that makes you truly happy? 

Think of the true intentions of martial arts classes nowadays– some people do it for money.  Some people do it for fun.  Some do it for fitness.  Shouting outloud can have the practical benefit if the person goes through his entire life without ever needing to use those skills in a street fight, and yet, they still managed to enjoy their experinece in martial arts class.  Maybe they never get to scream in normal life…

These hypothesises of mine are ridiculous, I know, but I’m just saying that the reasoning that screaming takes too much energy is as circumstantial as anything I’m saying right now, and I beleive it’s one of the prime examples where Lee wasn’t “wrong” to say  what he did but he wasn’t “right” either.

Bruce Lee was a product of his times.  I beleive kiais at the time were one of those things that were part of the martial arts world, and his purpose was to bring forth the revolution.  Ironically, in many of his movies, he does a lot of screaming himself.  So shall we do as Lee says, or do as he does?

Don’t get me wrong– his teachings played a pivotal role in my own education, both in terms of martial arts and in other contexts.  But ultimately, what I ‘took away’ from his method was nothing at all… I simply realized that his way of thinking was nothing special, and that’s in a sense what made it special.  I can think just like him.

His writings are, I beleive, like a snapshot of his situation.  His methodology is different from his first books to his last books, and that demonstrates that it was evolving.  And I dont mean either to emphasize his obsession with simplicity… I mean to say simply that his books aren’t so much his ‘instructions’ for future generations so much as ‘observations’ of his own studies in process.  And if we can assume that his art wasn’t static, then why are we even clinging to his techincally specific ideas?

Anyway– it’s not that I disagree explicitly with your post. I do know people who, while fighting, really aren’t fooling anyone or getting any results with their empty shouts.  But there are others whose roars are not idle threats– nor are they even intended as threats sometimes.  Sometimes, they are merely a statement.  And a statment is neither wrong nor right– it is what it is and any qualifications we give it are only substantiated by the uses we find for it.  Some people find it useful, others don’t.  Bruce Lee had his opinion, and indeed, through it he could create his own reality by fighting from that context– but there are others out there who do the same from their own perspectives with equal success, regardless of the ‘traditionality’ of their ‘styles’.

Things like energy conservation?  It is important, yes.  And so are the principles inertia and all that.

… what I’m getting at though is that there is  a ‘wrong’ way and a ‘right way’ to look at ‘styles’.  The wrong way is when the style exists and you learn that style.  The right way is when you exist, and the style is defined by you.  You aren’t trying to be ‘special’, you’re simply trying to do what works for you.

And to be honest, JKD doesn’t work for everyone.  Principles of economy of motion sound logical, but with the limited amount of training time that people have, there are at times more efficient ways of training that lead to ‘non-energey efficient techniques’ but which can still get results.  Like I say– an eye gouge might have excellent power return, but there are situations that evolve where you are forced to be less than efficient.  We climb that ladder with increasing difficulty in every situation to find what will ultimately work out.  Energy efficiency is important– but we must also understand that it is an ideal, and we can no more subscribe to it as a mantra anymore than we could say that capitalism works perfectly.  In theory, it does– in practice, everyone has to be allowed their own methods to navigate the big picture.

There is one point I disagree with you on though. You say that when you fight, logic, thinking, morality don’t matter.

I disagree with this.All that does matter. While I do beleive in the concept of being ‘in the zone’ where the fighting experience takes over, I beleive that for a true warrior, thinking, morality and logic must come into play.  I’m not talking about technique.  I’m talking about choices.  Why are you fighting? 

WIthout logic, thinking and morality, you have no chance of deciding when a fight has gone too far.  You have no chance of stopping if you’re winning already.  You have no chance at giving mercy.

On the flipside, if your opponent was winning, you’d have no chance of surviving either if there wasn’t some appeal to reason.

What I’m saying– all this talk of practicality, especially in terms of the teachings of Lee, makes a big deal out of the concept of ‘winning’.  But one can win a battle but lose the war, so to speak.  And that is what happens to a lot of people who get caught up in the technical bits of JKD but miss what it means to, philosophically, be a true martial artist.

The goal of martial arts is an improovement of self– not a return to the basest of animal instincts.  The highest form of the warrior isn’t just someone who gives himself over to instincts– no matter how honed these instincts are.  It is one who understands, not only the mechanincs of fighting, but the reasons for fighting.

This is something which is all too easily overlooked if we concentrate too much on the mechanical improovement of fighting rather than the philosophical implications of fighting.  Weapons, even sharpened ones– they need reason to be wielded, and that ultimately determines the infinite merit of a dull blade.  Bruce Lee’s writings are too often used only as intructions for weaponsmithing.

I think though he would have liked for us to see his writings as memoirs, so that we could understand his passion.  It is his having of a passion, the dynamic mechanics of self exploration, that he would have liked to pass on to us.  Ultimately, JKD would be useless in itself, even to Lee.

Make your own luck

I decided to do a random birthday fortune test, and here’s what I got:

You tend to find yourself lucky – both in business and in life.

And while being wealthy is nice, you enjoy sharing your abundance with others.


You put your luck to good use: you are very ambitious and goal oriented.


Often times, you get over excited and take on more than you can manage.




Your strength: Your ability to make your own luck




Your weakness: Thinking you can do it all




Your power color: Bronze




Your power symbol: Half Moon

  

Your power month: August


Seems strangely accurate.  Though I’m not sure why my power symbol is half moon. And it kinda stinks to only have one power month.

Regardless, I like that line “make your own luck” and if this cheezy fortune thing did anything right, it’s that making luck is one of the guiding principles of my philosophy of life.  Anyway, I’ve said enough about luck and taking control of your life before, I won’t reitterate at the moment because it’d just be repetitive.

Considerate

Some people are just, it seems, naturally inconsiderate.

I say ‘inconsiderate’ as a shorter version of ‘bad’, as in ‘inconsiderate people’ are not quite ‘bad people’.  Or are they?

It perhaps has a lot to do with expectation and social norms, but come on.  Everyone needs to agree to certain standards.

Off the top of my head, here are a few basic rules that people have violated over the past few weeks alone:

  1. People inviting themselves to other peoples’ events, without the
    invitation of the host or without the host declaring it a ‘free for
    all’ event.
  2. People getting annoyed or taking it personally that they’re not invited.
  3. People promising services that they assume others will provide on their behalf.
  4. People not tipping in restaurants.
  5. People making half assed plans.
  6. People bitching about descisions made when they have no better descisions or meaningful improovements to the situation.
  7. People who constantly get caught in the same bad situations and expect help to be bailed out.
  8. People borrowing money and assuming it’s okay if they pay it back a little later.
  9. People using borrowed money to buy luxuries instead of paying back the people they owe first.
  10. People making plans and assuming that it’s alright if they cancel.
  11. People being late and assuming it’s alright if they’re late.

people

People


PEOPLE

For god’s sakes people, if you are involved in our lives, then perhaps
you are friends.  But these friendships don’t exist for you to
abuse our patience.  If  you don’t get yelled at outright,
it’s because we’re giving you a bit of a leeway, but have a bit of
pride and stop going for the mediocre grade.  Consider, for once,
what OTHERS might feel about your actions.  I’m not saying what
you would expect– because maybe you don’t care that people let you
down or put you in tight spots– I’m saying consider what OTHERS expect.

While advancing your own ethics is important, there is something to be said about compromise if a society is to function.

GET A CLUE assholes!  Don’t take my advice the wrong way– when I
say that you should carry yourself forward with confidence, I’m talking
to you not being ashamed to push ahead with virtues!  I am NOT
talking about your vices, or the things that you do at the expense of
others.  Open your eyes and try and understand that maybe if
people are giving you the cold shoulder, it’s because you’re being a
jackass and probably deserve it.  It’s cause and effect.  You
want to know why?  Then take a long hard look in the mirror.

Happy New Year

Feb 19 2007 055

New Year: It’s about -30 C or so I think.

But what better way to spend the pre-New Year banquet with my grandfather, picking out food for gifts?

Feb 19 2007 044
Feb 19 2007 051
Feb 19 2007 047
Feb 19 2007 048
Feb 19 2007 052

You never really realize how colorful and how significant  everyday things like food can be until you take a look.

Random Thoughts

Happy Chinese New years.

Writing is sort of a game to me, and I don’t mean that in the sense of necessarily getting better.  It’s perhaps the only ‘collection’ hobby that I have.  The way that others collect cardgames, or purses, or autographs, I collect stories about myself and by myself, and I archive them.  Some day, this stuff shall go in history books.

The thing that comes out of this hobby though is that when I come into conversations with people, and this includes my friends, if they’ve been reading my writing they’ll often be a lot more informed of what’s going on in my head and in my life than I will be of theirs.  Consider that– what do I, know about you?  And yet, there you are, reading this– knowing more about me with every word.

When I write things, they aren’t personas.  They’re all parts of me.  And in that sense, I’m right there, I’m right here, out in the open.  People tell me that this is exactly why they don’t beleive in the idea of blogs– because there are certain things that are simply private.

I was discussing this with a friend a few days ago, and I pointed out that seldom are characters in my writing based on anyone that I know currently.  Usually, it’s people from my past.  So in some sense, those things and some other things considered, there are some thoughts that I do always keep to myself.

But yet, writing for a public readership is an important part of my lifestyle.  Simple because with every part of my life that I commit to public knowledge, that’s one more bit of my life that in some sense, I don’t have any fear about.

If I share it with you, it’s because it’s something I’ve come to terms with.  And with every thing I come to terms with, with everything that I am not embarassed to write out loud, that makes me a stronger person.  Writing for me isn’t just fun– it’s therapy, and it’s a craft, and I don’t mean that in the sense of the writing itself– I mean this in terms of my character.  It is a medium, it is a forge.

So there I am, meeting someone for the first time, perhaps a friend of a friend, and he/she starts talking about what he/ she read on my blog.  Does that put me at a disadvantage? Yeah, sure it does.  But so what I suppose?  That just forces me to be more sociable, because if I want to have any weight in the conversation I need to do some digging of my own.

I’m not a very ‘honest’ person by default.  I don’t say this with pride. I say this simply as a matter of factly– truth has it’s uses, and so does lying.  But if one takes the time, one will find that my comprtment is consistent to acheive underlying ideals– and that’s the kind of honesty that I beleive in.  It’s something like self respect.  I expect everyone to be the good anarchist in that sense, being their own master and yet, for their own sake, carrying their own laws for the betterment of the group.

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I was just randomly thinking about ‘rules’ and things that are considered to be ‘virtues’ in people.  Things like honesty and stuff like that.  What does that all mean?

I think a lot of times, people fall back on rules because they don’t want the responsability of thinking for themselves.  That’s how moral dilemas exacerbate themselves and become issues– because the person is following principles that he knows don’t jive with what their heart is telling them.

On the other hand, I’m also thinking about some people who get their minds set on particular goals and through ambition, lose all sense of environment– and by that, I mean that they follow their hearts so intently that they injure bystanders in the process.

Now, neither method is totally right, or totally wrong… however I’m inclined to think that humans weren’t meant for extremes like that.  Humanity is defined, in my book, by potential. Variability.  And that means that you’re supposed to be able to throw a human into any situation, standalone, and he’ll find the best way of doing things.

If they go with too much ‘principles’ then you have social integrety without a sense of purpose.  If you have too much ‘heart’ then you have passion without a respect for others no aligned to your cause.

And I think that the future of society lies in people who are between those two worlds… the ‘good anarchists’.  The ones who carry their own world and yet will do what is best for everyone.

Now, most people kinda look sideways at the first mention of the word ‘anarchy’ but I think that’s a bad reaction.  No more good anyway than looking sideways at ‘government’.

It’s not enough to judge, and I tell this to the idealists all the time.  Quit your yapping.  Your words should describe your actions– not just theories.  The best way to test out that ideal is in the real world– no amount of coffee shop philosophical talk is going to change the world if someone doesn’t take those words out into the real world.

… I often wonder, what happens to people who don’t have a ‘passion’?  There are things that I do, and with these experiences I develop vocabularies by which to discuss (with myself sometimes) the workings of life in general.  But if it weren’t for my passions, I would lack those vocabularies– and then what?  What would happen?

Every person’s potential is framed by their previous experiences.  In that sense, it’s a question of luck to see who gets the toughest first few cards.  But then what happens in the later rounds is anyone’s guess– no matter where you start off in the race, near the begining dead last or in front of the pack, once everyone’s moving you’ll notice that some people even with a head start don’t get anywhere.  There is no reason to try, no reason to fear defeat– just keep going.

This isn’t a competition.  Nobody on that race track matters but yourself.

…. at the end of the day when things are quiet, my mind wanders to simpler things.  Simple, really simple things.  And I think it’s only possible to appreciate simple things if you try and appreciate complexities with some effort– the simple solutions are always the most appreciated by people who have complicated lives.  But to people who live in one camp or the other and only epxerience that one type? There’s no appreciation because there’s no relative distance.

That is what experience is, really.  It’s pushing the outer limits of your existence.  You grow, you increase your ‘range’ of understanding.  When you draw those things, like Venn diagrams, the overlaps are where you connect with other people.

This is a random posting in general and doesn’t really follow any main idea except that I was bored, and not quite tired enough to take a nap yet.

It isn’t enough for you to absorb things. You have to export as well.

Bon courage!