“Jack Pines are not lumber trees and they won’t win many beauty contests either. But to me this valiant old tree, solitary on its own rocky point, is as beautiful as a living thing can be. In the calligraphy of its shape against the sky is written strength of character and perseverance, survival of wind, drought, cold, heat, disease… In its silence it speaks of wholeness, an integrity that comes from being what you are.” – Douglas Wood. Continue reading
“We were never really born, we will never really die. It has nothing to do with the imaginary idea of a personal self, other selves, many selves everywhere: Self is only an idea, a mortal idea. That which passes into everything is one thing. It’s a dream already ended,” wrote Jack Kerouac in a letter to his first wife, found in The Portable Jack Kerouac. Continue reading
It all started as a single thought. Doesn’t it always start that way?
I’d been feeling pretty good for quite a long time, but after the horrific bombing in Manchester, other world events and the way the media gobbled it all up excitedly, it was easy to let negative thoughts seep in. It’s life, it happens. But instead of greeting these emotions and moving them along, I invited them in for a cuppa. Continue reading
“There is something about yourself that you don’t know. Something that you will deny even exists until it’s too late to do anything about it. It’s the only reason you get up in the morning. The only reason you suffer the shitty boss. The blood, sweat, and the tears. This is because you want people to know how good, attractive, generous, funny, wild, and clever you really are. Fear or revere me, but please think I’m special. We share an addiction. We’re approval junkies. We’re all in it for the slap on the back and the gold watch, the hip, hip, hoo-fucking-rah. Look at the clever boy with the badge, polishing his trophy. Shine on, you crazy diamond, because we’re just monkeys wrapped in suits, begging for the approval of others. If we knew this, we wouldn’t do this. Someone is hiding it from us, and if you had a second chance you would ask, why?” – Jake Green, Revolver. Continue reading
“That men do not learn very much from the lessons of history is the most important of all the lessons of history.” – Aldous Huxley.
I’m not (overly) ashamed to read the occasional self-help book, as long as it’s not poorly written and isn’t too ‘self-helpy’. Today I was reading A Hidden Wholeness, by Parker J Palmer. So far, this book seems to be pretty good. It’s more about Parker’s view on the need for social change and his suggestions for how we can create it, rather than some bullshitty nonsense. Continue reading
It’s funny how we answer the question of who we are with an answer of what we do.
I’ll never forget the well-educated guy at a party late last year, who shook the hand of the man beside me, kissed the cheek of the lady, and did not so much as nod in my direction. He was standing right next to me. Continue reading
Some things we just know—if only we believed it.
I have a friend who recently sent me a couple of messages from a long lost love of hers who suddenly reappeared in her life from out of nowhere, then disappeared again. Let me assure you, it was not to invade the privacy of the sender, rather a last straw when she couldn’t for the life of her understand what happened.
Every one of us lives with a created self.
The created self, often referred to as the ‘ego’, is simply the person we believe ourselves to be. It encompasses our career choice, our social circles, our values, virtues, talents and the personality traits which we hope the people we meet would attest to. It’s our identity.
Often given a bad rap, the created self is necessary, to an extent. It reminds us to dress somewhat appropriately for work, to follow unspoken social rules such as listening to others when they speak, and to not road-rage at the idiot driver. Continue reading