Some realisations hit hard, like being knifed in the heart. Others flood your being with relief. It is the latter in which we – as a sentient people – find refuge. That refuge for a time provides respite, it strengthens us against the next onslaught of negativity. Negativity is bound to come and go, it is persistent in its attempts to contaminate the everyday. Let it come. Watch it go. That is how to build up your resistance. Practice does not necessarily guarantee perfection, but it gets you a lot closer to it than sitting wishing for expertise to strike you like lightning.
You will have realisations that cause you pain in this life. I suppose that is the sad reality. The happy reality is that one day you will come to realise that the pain was not a waste of time. Nothing ever is, if you do it properly. Your happy realisations will depend on who it is that you are. What makes us wholly happy as individuals is quite specific. What makes us sad is usually group therapy. As it happens.
Realisations, both good and bad, are vital for the growth of our understanding – they are never to be used for overstanding. When you learn something new, or you are shown a different way to do or improve something, you share that knowledge with those you know who will benefit from it. You do not waste time sharing it with those who do not need to know because for them there is no benefit in repetition. In fact, there is no point telling those people anything even once, but do it anyway. Their deafness is not your problem, but it will save you sleepless nights in your future past.
Critics are important. When they are required. When they are not required they are nothing short of a pain in the arse. Critics are the reason there are censors, and censors – where necessary – can be valuable. For instance: censors are needed when it comes to the matters of children. Adolescents should be guided, too, by sensible censors and adults in their own capacity should be quite capable of choosing what they would like to expose themselves to. When critics are selected – and I am not talking about the idiot critics who elect themselves experts on subjects they know nothing about – there are vital criteria that must be met. One of those is the selector’s ability to recognise in a critic his/her inherent intent when criticising.
Fortunately constructive criticism exists. It is still possible to find those who delight in the success of others in this dog-eat-dog world. It would seem that the predominant desire in this world – perhaps because there are billions of ‘have-nots’ on this planet – is to see your neighbour fail once he/she has achieved a degree of success deemed by you to be ‘above their station in life’. Resentments abound. Those that ‘have’ at first become their own clan, thinking that by pulling together they will somehow preserve their imagined pre-eminence and protect their investments. In the manic dash to close ranks in their capitalist panic they do not realise that the welfare of their fellow humans is their investment.
Once upon a time I said that there were some things I needed, and some that I didn’t. It would seem that some idiot decided that they knew better than me what I required and in an act of perhaps misdirected goodwill delivered me to the kangaroo court, the Spanish Inquisition’s firing squad and the Doors of Hell. It was not expected that I would benefit from the experiences, but I ensured that I did. I discovered on my lengthy journey that kangaroos were in fact dogs dressed in sheep’s clothing, that Spanish is a beautiful language to listen to and I learned that my private Hell was nothing to fear. Quite the contrary. It is the scars that are housed in my private Hell that held the keys to the foreseeable future. We all have a private Hell. A personal place we send ourselves at various stages to make amends. The point in being sent there is to fix things, to heal our ravaged souls. There is no point in going there with the intention of inflicting further damage upon yourself for the same old sins committed. You are there to face and accept old fears, to process your allocated pain. You are there to understand your sadness and to let it go. You are not there to assassinate your own character – so do not become your own worst critic.
There is a vocation. A calling. It is called Investigator of Kingdoms. It is all-encompassing. When you are required to make an informed decision you need to gather all the information. That means checking the ins and outs of every kingdom. There are a great many, The Animal Kingdom but one. Ask people who game. In part they are all investigators of kingdoms, some of them extraordinarily adept at what they do. Ask people who save animals for a living. Theirs’ is a kingdom. Ask people who have crowned money their king. They belong to a kingdom, too. There is even a point in asking a murdering savage why he does what he does. He will say because he wants to. What can you say to that in a free world?
The Animal Kingdom belongs to Nature. That is the first – and easiest – thing to understand. Man, too – belongs to Nature. Woman, belongs to the Sun. Notoriously possessive, the Sun is a formidable opponent. His shield is virtually impossible to penetrate. The Sun shields the Virgin. That is the second thing to understand. If you will reach her sanctity you must brave fire. In the Animal Kingdom you will find carrion. What else does the wild feed upon? The stench of death does not deter them from feasting. You will find bones, thrown here and there. Everywhere. Then you will find hyenas. They shriek and eat bones. Vultures abound, too. They tidy up nicely.
The Animal Kingdom impacts a lot of pain. Their pain – generated almost entirely by humans – is revisited upon the planet for the humans to experience. The randomness with which sudden death appears to consume people, for instance, is no different to the randomness with which hunting humans seem to choose their targets. Right. You. Bam. Most hunting humans do not say sorry when they kill. Nor do they say thank you. They should. It gives them headway when they become the hunted.
It is an interesting thought. How do you convey an understanding? That is some skill, when you can do that effectively. It is a skill we are all learning, all the time. It is about being skilled in communication. However you choose to do that. Understanding is visceral. You can feel it. How do you confer a feeling? First you must understand the feeling before you can attempt to share it. When you hear a truth, remember that you do not need to remind yourself to remember it for the future, when you hear a truth it sinks right in. You have to do nothing more than hear it. Hearing is not the same as listening. Also, it is best if you do not start trying to fight the truth with reason – man’s reason ought not be valued as much as it is in this world. It tries with its noise to out-shout others whose opinions are more valuable.
It is said that love means understanding a person’s position when they wrong you, treat you badly. Instead of lashing out, you stand back and you consider what pain the person must be in. Pain governs a great deal of bad behaviour and oftentimes deserves empathy. This can be challenging. Of course, should the person treating you badly simply be an arsehole, then take yourself out of their equation. In life there is really little point in surrounding yourself with arseholes, do not allow yourself to become one, either. It is a choice.
To share an understanding with another is a beautiful thing indeed. Your understandings will guide you in life. They guide very effectively when you have them accessible, your understandings lead you to ever-new perceptions about people, times, places. Fresh perceptions are necessary in life. They inspire you. When you understand something new, or you understand a thing differently to the way you understood it before, you give yourself tools with which to work your life around you. It is worth taking time to understand a thing, things. Tools come in a variety of shapes, and sizes.
Growth – when it comes to you – is not something that you should try to shrug off. It is persistent and it will stick with you, beside you, until you allow it in and you invite it to change your circumstances. Without growth you go nowhere. The most common reaction to growth – initially – is resistance. Who wants pain? Not one among us, I am sure. However, pain is an inevitable part of growth in most instances. In order to stretch and reach higher, further, than you have ever reached before, you need to invite yourself to grow. You must meet your boundaries, exceed them.
There are countless ways to grow yourself. You can start by facing your fears. That is usually a very effective way to develop your character and grow your human being. Facing fears starts with acknowledging that you have them, firstly. If you should have no fears at all, then consider yourself extremely fortunate. Yours is the ideal space to be in. We are all driven to that space, the place where fears are merely a considered reaction to a situation. If you can stand outside your fears and watch them going on you will find that you are in a much better position to deal with them, to let them go.
Growing means you will need more room to keep yourself. That can mean literally a larger space in which to confine your physical form, or more headspace to accommodate your ‘larger’ mind. Your ‘opened’ mind. An opened mind takes up a lot of space, it has mazes of doors that you will need to open, each of them so you can grow. You have to be brave enough to open the doors, to walk through them. You will change every time you do. That is a frightening concept for some people. It really shouldn’t be. The more you change, the more you grow and since growth is what we are all aiming at on planet Earth – for it is through growth that we will achieve every one of our end goals – the braver you must become each time you discover that it is your turn to grow.
Transition is an interesting phase. It is closure on one level, and the opening up of a brand new vista on another. Transitions in life – and you will have a few – may cause you to lose the reference points with which you have become familiar. You will need to establish new reference points and you will need to be pragmatic about the process of saying goodbye to the old ones. Reference points only serve you for the duration of their lifespan, there is no need to be sentimental about starting afresh.
Transition is about changing. Again – respect that change is life. That is the one reality you cannot escape. The more precious we are about holding on to our personal ‘history’, the more difficult it is to embrace change. Be selective about what you are precious about. Transitions do not come without warning, but they do happen without your permission. They come at exactly the right time. It is wise to accept their arrival.
Transition is about growing, too. This can be a seamless process, you can expand your capacity without it being painful. Often, it is painful. You are pushing yourself to capacity, and beyond – which hurts. There is always the beyond. There is always something extra where you expect to be empty. You just have to find the courage to go there. You become what you are meant to be through transition. Each transition, a success. No matter how you respond to the transition that is sent to change you, change you will. So that is success.
Death is one of life’s transitions. Viva la vista.
Why do people who can barely provide for themselves, breed? Why are millions of children caught up in their parent’s poverty? When you bring a child into a shit life – and you know very well whether your life is shit or not – what are you thinking? I don’t think you are thinking. You can’t be. In some countries children are bred to sell, or to work. That makes no sense. The parents must work. For themselves, first. If you cannot put food on the table for yourself, let alone a family, then you have to sit parenthood out. You do not breed children to provide for you – know that for free. It is time people grew more responsible and looked at what they are doing to themselves, as a whole. What are you showing a child when you bear and raise it in poverty, squalour? You are teaching it disease and suffering. Death. Why would anyone choose to do that? As a parent, do not tell me that there is surplus energy to love and nurture your children when you are struggling to stay alive.
Breeding violence is not productive. What is the point of generation after generation learning that hurting other people is how you send a message or get what you want? That is not the way. Violence is second nature to some people. It is their first reaction to any confrontation. In fact, violent people will seek confrontation so that they can inflict damage. Theirs’ is a bizarre mindset. It wants controlling. Realise that violence changes a person. It hardens your heart. If you commit acts of violence, you are not in control. You need to be in control of your wild inside. The anger that drives violence is a voice – amidst many – that still needs to be heard, but there are other ways for that pain to say what needs saying. The fact that so much senseless violence is played out through alcohol intoxication should alert mankind to what it becomes under the influence. Often, where there is truth there is conflict.
In the same way that you get breeds of animals, you get breeds of people. Of men. Women. Animals accept their classification without taking it personally. Humans don’t. They fight themselves, each other, over what and who they are. They are precious about their identity. This is a consistency, everywhere. It causes wars. You are bred into tradition – the system – or you are bred to question the system. Some people are bred into wealth. What they do with that privilege is always measured. You are bred into security, or you are not. If you are not, your questions are for your parents. Hard workers are a breed of people. As are the compassionate. Arseholes, too, are a breed. Take each at face value.
Would you expect peace in Utopia? Would you assume it to be a wholly peaceful place? I think it is better never to assume anything, no matter how well you may have convinced yourself that you know what is best in a particular situation. There is always someone who knows better than you do. I have learnt that lesson in life and I trust its consistency. The trick is to find that person. Does Utopia – or Elysium, Heaven, a harem of 1000 virgins, Paradise, etc – exist for you? Even just in your dreams? Does it mean to you perfect, or does it mean ideal? You need to define these things for yourself before you can set about finding yours. That yours is the same as mine – or the next person’s – is a possibility, but this is doubtful in a world this self sufficient. We each have a private ideal, a personal state of perfection that we (ought) to be striving towards. It depends on how you view perfection as to how your Utopian odyssey will unfold. Your journey is ongoing, you will find yourself there, in time. It just takes time.
The way to peace is to educate. Ask Malala Yousafzai, support her cause with $10 a month if you do not yet do anything for your world. What is $10 worth in your world? Encourage your children to support a worthy cause – let them learn the value of compassion. Teach them that it is important to give something back when you have more than others do and teach them this through your example. It is more and more apparent in these everydays that our children are very capable of understanding the meaning behind an action, a behaviour – i.e. a motivation. Do not take from them this facility. Nourish it, them. Let them learn empathy, through affection. It will get them far in life.
In pursuit of peace (and quiet) it is your responsibility as an adult to demonstrate your true nature in front of children. They see straight through an act and besides, they learn assertion. Let them read your truth because this is how you show a child respect for their time. Their assessment. Letting them know your weaknesses as well as your strengths is not a failure, it is a clued-up move. Apologise when you shout, curse. Explain if you cry. If you curse under your breath, that counts. Saying sorry says hey – it is human to make mistakes. Life is dramatic – there is no getting away from that reality. If you think it is not then you need to open your eyes and notice for once (in a very long while) its colour. Colour brings pain, mind you. Moderate that pain. It is vital for children to realise through your demonstration the real of this world we live in. It is an exercise in strengthening, stretching their emotional intelligence. Please recognise a child’s emotional intelligence when you spot it. The more equipped children are to handle themselves (in any situation that presents itself), the more stable their end life-view is going to be. Children do not think in infinities. They need an end view that is stable – whatever that stability entails. Theirs’ can be surprisingly flexible, their stability – it depends what keeps them happy. Children have extraordinary capacity and they will instinctively stretch themselves. Let them. What is necessary to know is that it is essential that a child develops a life-view that perpetually fires up new synapses with excitement. Children should laugh a lot and they should be shown a great deal in their lives, as well as a good example. If you cannot show them a good example – you will need to trust that your child will role-model on the dominant adult in the vicinity who sets best that example. An example. If you cannot trust that your child will know right from wrong, then you have a problem.
And if you do not know who Malala Yousafzai is, perhaps you should. She deserves a Nobel Peace Prize one day.
Trust that it is necessary to have your heart broken at least once in this life. It need not be a relationship breakdown that brings it on, it could be your cat getting squashed by a car. A death in the family. It could be that you feel brokenhearted because the world is in the state it is. It depends how deep your feelings go. When your heart is broken, you are forced into a confrontation with yourself. You are wounded and you are not happy. The conversations you will have with yourself will be filled with self-pity and usually you respond to the call of victim for a time. Be sure that it is only for a time.
The broken heart heals if you allow it to. When it is permitted to thrash around in agony it works its pain out the way it knows how. Let it. This is the best way. Your emotions will take the hit, but that can be managed. A broken heart hurts. It is a physical ache, a mental torture. A spiritual strengthening. A broken heart does not forget how to love. Ever. It just struggles to adjust to the idea that its sharing is going to have to be with somebody new. It is hard to let go of the old to make space for the new. In fact that is one of this life’s biggest challenges. Falling out of love with someone is not the end of the world. Recognising the truth of the matter, is. A love lost breaks a heart, every time. A broken heart comes with sadness. Sadness is heavy and it decimates your being, but it has to be felt and it has to be worked through. You cannot ignore it. Remember that sadness will stay with you as long as it can. It is up to you to decide when the time is over for its punishment.
The healed heart will carry scars. This is not serious. Each scar, a love. How can that be bad news? Celebrate the loves you have had in your life. You will know which have been loves and which have not. Try not to hate people you once loved. That is not productive. It is your responsibility to remind yourself why you loved them once upon a time. That reason – those reasons – must be enough to prevent you from regretting your choices. If you cannot bring yourself to a place where you can at least appreciate the learning you have received through loving and losing love, you have a lot of work to do. Each love in your life has been sent to you for a reason. You are a reason in someone else’s life. Assess yourself. Your relationships. Are you getting what you need? Are you learning? If you are not, you must ask yourself what you are doing.