Posts Tagged ‘exercise

03
Jan
20

Life Is Not Short, 1-3-2020

***

A rather common expression these days says life is short or even too short. I strongly disagree and get upset with anyone who says this. [So, if you happen to interact with me in person or online, please refrain from using this line.]

Life is–as I prefer to say–as long as it is granted to you, as long as the Fates allow.

You get what you get and really do not have any sensible, genuine idea how to prolong it, though certain lifestyle choices DO enhance the quality of life and may offer some minor extension…but there’s no proof. Surprises never cease, and those who think they are perfectly healthy can suffer some sudden shock to the system which blows the whole outlook.

So, don’t count…anything. Don’t count the days. Don’t count the calories. Don’t count the steps or miles you run every day; what are you? A hamster? Just live and do your best to let others live; be cooperative but not a doormat. And, if you find yourself in a position to dominate, don’t revel in it; don’t stomp on the competition. You could just as quickly be under the other foot when you foolishly overstep your bounds. And, you project a terrible example to others who could easily replace you.

I’ve recently been discussing the sensitive subject of drugs with my very little nephews. Their parents have “no time” to talk about such things. But, from my childhood experience, I know how little adults (in my family, anyway) make an effort to discuss serious topics and prepare kids for what’s ahead, rather than let some PSA or school program drill a single phrase and some silly video into their heads. I can still see the cartoon donkey telling me to avoid strangers, the YUCK face warning me about hazardous drug bottles and the owl advising me not to pollute. Ya know…those were all cute and fun in their prime. But, real kids either wise up fast or go a long time before something shocks the crap out of them. Guess which one I was? The kid who got the crap shocked out of him when “reality” presented itself. B-But, the school was exceptional with its education system!…or so reputation says. Whatever. Parents and other adults need to be the education system…and not scare the kids.

Just the other day, I tuned into a TV show about social animal species which gave considerable focus to dolphins, elephants and a few types of monkeys. I became irked every time the narrator said an insect’s brain was far too small to compete with that of a dolphin. Does anyone other than me grasp the concept of size being relative, the idea that the physical size of the creature does not determine its intellect? We already should know an ant can lift an incredible amount of weight; can it not be just as possible for an ant to have more intelligence than we currently possess?

What if even the creatures with a “hive mentality” simply devote their massive brain power to that collective instead of dividing their “gifts” on all sorts of meaningless economical concerns and mindless entertainment, as humans do? Maybe our measily ten percent of brain power would grow or achieve more if we were not so…distracted and divided. It would not surprise me if, years from now, we discover plants having brains and a language we simply did not notice…and countless vegans suddenly turn ill with guilt for consuming yet another intelligent life.

[We humans, as far as I know, are the only species to become conflicted with what seems to be primal nature. We are so withdrawn from nature that we are foolishly, blindly destroying it. The “perfume” is so thick, we can’t think clearly.]

As much as it agitated me to hear the repetitive talk about the sizes of brains, I was finding myself emotionally drawn to the elephants and dolphins. In a strange way, I envied their social structures. I wanted to embrace them and say, “Let’s go have fun, together. Let’s go have a picnic at the beach.” I felt the urge to book a trip to some far off place where I could ride an elephant or swim with a dolphin, become the creature’s friend and make sure they were treated properly. [I get very unfriendly when I see an animal mistreated by “the system.” I’m not the best zoo visitor and go crazy when I see so many scientists trying to use technology on other animals, hoping to make them more like humans or give up all their secrets to the insatiable probing of humankind.]

And then…I thought about going home, leaving those animals I just befriended…and how sad it would be, not knowing what became of them or having any say in it, really. I’d be lucky to get a letter from someone who knows the creature. [It’s not like my elephant pal Boris can keep in touch, himself. And, so far, even when people nod and tell me they will keep in touch, it rarely comes true, sort of like parents who promise to take you on some trip to give you a summer worth talking about with your peers or just to shut you up so you don’t drive them bonkers all year, trying to pass off a hamburger and fries as a substitute for Disneyland and summer camp.]

You know what is short (in my life)? Time with those for whom I care and who I grow to like. Time with people who, at least, seem to truly understand and sympathize with me. It’s so rare; it’s like finding a unicorn in the forest. And, just when I think I’ve found some gem of a person, something seems to snatch them away.

It’s no wonder I have such a delusional outlook on life, in general. I’m obsessing with fantasies instead of taking what is given to me in a content manner. And, even my fantasies can’t sustain me because I still desire some tangible piece to ground my thoughts and feelings. I still want a body to hold and love, not a cartoon or mannequin.

And, though it is a common driving force to pursue a single warm body for primal needs, I know, deep down, it takes a bit more than that to achieve the grander sense of happiness; it takes a circle of friends and good relations with family. Well, I can pretty much wrap up that last one as a failure; even if I kissed the ground my family walked upon and did everything they wanted me to do, I would not be happy with them…and I am sure a few would continue to be unhappy with me, which is probably where my perfectionist vices originated. As a student, I couldn’t cope with less than a perfect grade but didn’t understand why; I just assumed others would look down upon me somehow. Less than perfect became almost sinful, forcing me to seek the means to atone.

I don’t see great or even good options for paths to take. I don’t see the multitude of good people with whom I am to surround myself nor the means to cast out the negative few. The negative outweigh the positive and, in turn, cause me to emit negativity, apparently. My anger, frustration and despair from what I see and hear is giving me a stink as it stews in my pores. If my social anxieties don’t spoil things for me, I make a fool of myself when I think I am in the right and cross a line with someone I just met. All my lessons in manners and respecting other cultures goes out the window once I open my mouth.

As a child, I was raised to dress properly and sit quietly while adults were in the room. I was a trophy child, someone the adults talked about but rarely with, other than the occasional comment about how I was performing in school or my interests, particularly art which few adults indulged in, thus they had little to say. I was complimented and encouraged to perform better and better than better. It was only when I reached my teens that my mind advanced beyond what my body was doing and became highly self-conscious. At my lowest point, I found my voice and used it to save myself from premature death. I thought speaking out was a valian effort. But, what did it get me? What has it gotten me all these years? A few more compliments about my sense of humor, a few more bits of praise for my wit…and a ton of complaints from the majority of negative spectators who find my words foolish, unpleasant and/or excessively self-righteous.

So, I say it, again. What is truly short? The time I have with those who satisfy my spirit (and body). Not life. This life of mine goes on and on, prolonged by a higher power who has some greater…or worse…plan for me. It began abnormally and continues to survive abnormally. Thus, I can never call myself “normal.” I have come close to ending it myself, but some tiny flame resides in me which continues to believe all is not lost, even if time takes its toll on the mind, body and worldly resources that seem to be so important to having this life (when they have so little to do with nature and life itself).

If you outlive someone who literally loses their mind, the ability to speak sensibly with you and recognize your face, you may be discouraged and join the chorus who sing about life being short. But, realize you are still living; your life continues with the knowledge of someone else losing their full potential for life. You still have time. Do you use it to compare lengths of lives? Or, do you simply live it and understand loss of ability and death are part of it?

Cherish what you have. Don’t quest or chase for what may be too much. Take care of good friendships and other relationships. These should not be labors but natural constructs that you merely maintain and thank the heavens for having in your life.

And, breathe.

16
May
17

The Tao of Writingbolt

*****

Every now and then, I get a moment of divine inspiration, a little nudge to create something special.  [Some call it “awen.”]  Today, it pushed me to make something like this.

TheTaoofWritingbolt-the5As_martialartist-configuration-square_ap-2J

These are what I’d say are the five points to my being which have formed over time.  A decade or so ago, they may have been different.  I barely knew astrology before I was twenty-eight.  But, I wanted to craft something that centered and represented me.  It forms a sort of tree or Asian calligraphy character.

ART:  Associated with the heart, the core, the earth.  Like a tree, like earth is the base of certain philosophical images, art is at the root (though I’d prefer to place it at the top, reaching for the sky with no limit for potential.  I relate art to therapy (and occasionally dabble in art therapy as a psychology tool).  It’s nursing for the heart, for the soul.  It’s the life force that fuels/inspires most other actions/expressions/output.  It can be connected to martial arts (and yoga), as well.  Though it takes up the least room in the picture, it’s the biggest component.

AEROBICS:  Associated with the wind/breath (though it burns food and woe up like fire).  I didn’t think much of exercise as a kid.  But, as an adult, I see how it fits into the picture.  It used to be the trials of gym class.  Now, it’s a means of relieving stress and subconsciously improving my general well-being.  It’s the physical that balances the mental, emotional and digestive.  And, sometimes it brings that divine inspiration.  Generally, I am a hiker who likes to go “adventuring,” exploring foreign lands of interest, trusting my gut (even though my compass isn’t the best).  I’m not as interested in touring buildings as I am in ruins and relics found in natural setting.  I have equal passions for forests and beaches (but not much love for pollen, bugs or intense heat/sunshine).

ASTROLOGY:  Associated with the mind, a cloud, the sky/stars.  By far, this is no bigger than aerobics/exercise and Ayurveda/nutrition in my life.  But, it has been a key note in my ceaseless pursuit of philosophy and understanding.  It’s a good icebreaker in social/dating situations.  I’m no expert.  But then, we all are continuous students, in a way.  And, strangely, it has benefited me in tasks of memory and creative projects aplenty.

AYURVEDA:  Associated with fire, the combustible (like food), a source of energy and potential problems if not properly attended/balanced.  It’s the most recent point of the figure, something I came across after reading an article in a magazine while returning home on a flight; I later picked up a book on self-therapy which included a good portion about Ayurvedic medicine and nutrition.  And, while I’m quick to reject and slow to accept new philosophies, this one kinda made sense.  It just slipped into place, partly because it did NOT support the common medicine practices of taking pills for your ills.  It was strangely comforting.  A good fire can keep you warm; and the more I read, the more I felt warm inside.

AWEN:  And, at the center of it all, is what may be behind it all, divine inspiration, a gift from above, a complex puzzle box slowly unfolding or coming together to make greater sense.  [Note how two of the hands seem to be giving each other a “fist bump.”  I thought that was a nice, totally coincidental (at first) touch.]

If anyone has any input or questions about the image, feel free to share.  No need to be nervous.  I’d be willing to help you create your own “tao” image, as well, if interested.

And, as I state at the bottom, I didn’t get a clear understanding of the word “tao” from my dictionaries, but it sounded good.  😀  If you can think of a better term for this concept, I’d be glad to hear it.




Archives