Archives for posts with tag: philosophy

No one can argue that it would be great to be wealthy.  Having money certainly makes many facets of life more convenient but there is a fine line between owning money and letting money own you.  We must always keep ourselves in check whenever we succeed because there is a higher risk of losing our path when we succeed than when we fail.

When we fail, we are all too aware of the stark realities and perhaps we might tend to lose hope but nothing is as dangerous as getting the wealth, power, or fame which many aspire for.  There is a saying which goes “Be careful what you wish for.  You might actually get it.” It’s certainly ironic but there is always a certain ring of truth with ironies and it can be said about money, fame, and power which are not intrinsically negative but has a higher tendency of causing us to deluded or lose touch with ourselves or where we began, and this is where we end up losing our way and before we know it, we have lost our souls.

Losing ours souls doesn’t come in one fell swoop, it’s a gradual process of adjusting our moral and ethical boundaries for “just a little bit more” until the boundaries blur and actually disappear and we transform into something which we have never imagined ourselves turning out to be when we were starting out.  We might actually become one of those people whom we despise when we were on the outside looking in… This is where the victims turn into the perpetrators, more often than not.

We must then ask ourselves–is all the worldly gain we wish for worth the price of our humanity?

 

(c) Niconica 2014

Advertisements

It is tempting to imagine ourselves flailing about helplessly in a chaotic world, subject to the whims of fate, but aside from the dramatic situation this image paints, it is actually not representative of actual reality and we get into trouble when we start adopting this worldview due to constant exposure to movies and tv series made for entertainment–great stories of course, but we must not confuse stories with real life.

One of the central tenets of writing fiction is the existence of conflict and this is what makes stories gripping and entertaining.  Unless one is seeking self-punishment, we do not and should not thrive on having constant conflict in our lives.  What makes for great viewing is not what makes for a great life–which revolves around harmony.  The minute life imitates art, and we feel that we are subject to the machinations of a grand invisible storyteller, we must get a grip on ourselves.

It is true that many–or even, most–things in life are out of our control, but we must not lose sight of the fact that despite that, there are still several, if not many, things which are in our control.  We still have a say and a responsibility about how to conduct our life, and these are reflected through our choices.  The existence of choices and cognitive decision making abilities confer self-determination upon us to this extent.  Inasmuch as we cannot be 100% in control, we are still able to be proactive and be able to direct our lives, more than we would like to admit.

Perhaps the circumstances we find ourselves in are not easy to alter, but every moment we can choose to plant good seeds which will yield better karmic fruit in the future–instant gratification is not a part of this equation.  We can choose at every moment to find a way to improve ourselves–attempting to be kinder and more compassionate at every turn–without allowing ourselves to be taken advantage of nor inadvertently encourage unhealthy behaviours in others and in ourselves–so that we can learn to enjoy what it is to be truly human.

(c) Niconica 2013

 

For all our sophisticated technology and intricate systems of thought, there is nothing so simple and so effective as the truth.  The truth is pure enough that it holds true through the test of time and space, and sometimes, all it takes it the truth ‘to set us free’ as trite as it sounds, it is a cliche for a reason because it holds water.

Closure is essential when we conclude a relationship and wish to move on and as many external ways there is to cope with a break-up, there is only one essential ingredient to internally coping with it and it is being honest with oneself and the other about what has transpired and what can and cannot be mended, brushing off the dust, and moving forward.

There are many stop-gap measures to artificially mimic closure which includes jumping into a rebound relationship, badmouthing one’s ex, pretending that the ex or the relationship never existed, or avoiding meeting the ex or anything having to do with the ex for as long as possible. True closure involves being able to encounter the ex (whether online or in person) without ill feelings.

It is a pity that the worst break-ups which need the dose of the truth are often the ones which are not afforded the much needed post-break-up decompression discussion between both parties after a reasonable period of introspection and separation which allows both people to lick their own wounds and consider contact again.

Often when exes meet up they are compelled to show a brave face to each other and keep up the false front of nonchalance and feign smiles to show that they are fine and everything is back to normal.  Perhaps there is the intention of being in good terms with the ex, but intentions are often not enough.  It is this artificial sweetness piled up on top of damage that causes the situation to continue to be unresolved.

However, we are masters of escapism, what with so many distractions abound, we think that we can distract ourselves away from the fundamentals of relationships and human interaction where the truth counts for more than all the elaborate speeches and twisted mind games we can come up with.  Granted, the truth is not usually pretty, which is why we would love to cover it up with frills and flowers for as long as possible, but at a price.

Sharing our truths with an ex is not an excuse to attack or bash the other person.  If one is still angry, resentful, or hurt enough to be incapable of genuine goodwill in interacting with one’s ex to seek closure, then one should stay away.  However, when one is mature enough to realize that many a relationship’s demise requires a decompression period and a summary discussion which allows for genuine closure, healing, and freedom, it can be the time to step forward and share one’s truth with the other with no expectations of redemption or vindication, as much as one is tempted to have such.

Break-ups are complicated and both parties cannot be expected to be in the same mind space and our responsibility should only be to ourselves, to speak our truths with love and respect for the other person’s feelings, and when we have done so, irrespective of whether the other person responds or not, we must back off and live our own lives to the best of our ability.

We must remember that we cannot be in control of another’s response or reaction; however, we are in control of and responsible for our own actions and reactions. Telling our truth is never simple nor is it easy but it has value to our well-being.

(c) Niconica 2012

It’s funny how we end up getting along with unexpected people. I’d met him a couple of years back and only in passing, I would never have thought that we would end up getting along so well.

There’s something to be said about a playful exchange of ideas combined with an intuitive understanding of the person accented by open lines of communication.

It’s one of the better way to make friends and unlike my previous posts, even if there are things which need to be explained, at least it’s more infrequent and not a lot of things get lost in translation, which is really saying something.

While I enjoy meeting people and getting to know them and their stories on a more detached, objective, inquisitive level, I revel in making new friends–genuine connections which make life more colorful and interesting–and this is a step up than just chitchat and getting acquainted with people and establishing a friendly but passing rapport.

If time and space allows for it, I could still stand to know him better since it is rare that I meet someone of his standing who is as kind, caring, gentle, and compassionate as he is.

I would never have thought that such a person still exists–a rare combination of beauty and kindness in one package.  It does not escape my mind that perhaps knowing him would serve to inspire me to be a better person.

Topics flow freely like crystal clear water and there are so many things to discuss and talk about, and it is not often that I stop and think to myself, “Now, this is someone that I want to be friends with.”  Because thinking this thought entails actually having the intention of investing time to cultivate a friendship–and this precious time, I do not have an abundant supply of.

However, this is just the beginning of what hopefully can be a beautiful friendship–but of course, all beginnings are usually good and everything remains to be seen as time skillfully unravels the mystery of the connection.

Unlike the connection with the kindred spirit which felt like staring into the mirror image of myself in many ways soul-wise, this particular soul I am referring to in this post is in many ways a complete opposite yet at the same time a perfect complement in many ways and it is with this energy that an interesting synergy is created.

I just wanted to share that it might be possible that I’ve found a friend in the most unlikely of circumstances and with an unusual dynamic–one which is often talked about but not commonly experienced.

And it’s interesting that it comes when I am at a stage of my life that I feel that meaningful connections are few are far between, and if they exist, they are usually fleeting ones.  Only time will tell.

Meanwhile, it’s fun to have “stopped and talked awhile” and here’s to more meaningful conversations and a pleasant and enriching meeting of minds!

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to images

Why is it that communication with some people feels like a constant tug of war?  It’s almost like needing subtitles constantly to get one’s point across and even then, a lot of things get lost in translation.

As much as I’d like to say that communication techniques can be learned and improved upon, there is only as much we can do when the fundamental thought process which create the underlying push and pull are in odds with each other.

These mechanics are unfortunately only revealed through the passage of time and when one harbors the hope of furthering a connection or a relationship, it is disappointing when these mechanics surface.

On one end, more sentimental people might argue that it would be good to try to work on the communication problems and see how it can be improved, but on the other hand, more practical people would say that something that doesn’t work and would take more than necessary effort and time to upkeep is not worth it.

I think that the first argument is feasible when one is in a permanent and legally binding commitment or when there are children involved and/or lives at stake.

However, for the happily single and uncommitted person, the second and more practical option might be the best way to go.

Why bother to go through all the hard yards, the emotional roller coaster rides, and the unwelcome rip tides when one can just cut one’s losses and just let go?  Why needlessly complicate life which does not need one’s help in making it more tangled?

Do you really want to spend your whole life–or at least a significant portion of it translating, explaining, or defending one’s thoughts, words, emotions, or intentions?

Of course, all communications start out good because people are not being themselves yet at the beginning and it takes time for the true dynamics of the relationship to emerge… and when it has, one must seriously consider whether it’s worth the trouble or whether it’s more trouble than it’s worth–and make a choice.  In, or out?

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to the image/s

It’s not as simple anymore to answer the question: Do you believe in fate or free will?

Determinism

 

 

 

 

It might be because when I was younger I believed very strongly in free will, but as experiences and setbacks have piled up through the years, I started leaning slightly more towards fate.

Fate or "Ming" in Chinese

 

It might perhaps be a coping mechanism of sorts–to justify the bad thiings that have happened by attributing it to fate as opposed to accepting the other possibility which is that we have made the wrong decisions and ended up stuck with the consequences.

The Roll of the Dice

It might also be that we have learned the hard way that free will can only go so far… We may want something or someone with all our being but it doesn’t mean that we will be able to achieve or get them.

It might also mean that we are much weaker, passive or exhausted, and we rage and raise our fists against life even less and are content to be swept along by the tides of destiny (or fate, whatever we choose to call it).

Expect the Unexpected

So, I guess the answer is both–depending on which life stage I was in. And who knows which one it’ll be in the coming years.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*does not apply to image/s

This is in response to the Plinky prompt via The Daily Post @ WordPress (http://dailypost.wordpress.com) which goes like this: Are you an optimist, a pessimist, or something else?

My response would be:  Both – which amounts to something else.  I am optimistic enough and pessimistic enough and it blends together to constitute something else – a Cynical Idealist or an Idealist Cynic.
Put in simplistic terms, an optimistic sees the glass half full and the pessimist sees the glass half empty.  In my case, I want to see the glass as half full and am determined to do so while at the same time having to acknowledge that the glass can yet stand to be filled even more…
Ahh… the delightfully frustrating ever fluid ambiguity and ambivalence of it all…
(c) Niconica 2011*
*does not apply to image/s

Many thanks to http://dailypost.wordpress.com and Plinky for the prompt “Do yu believe everything happens for a reason?  Why or why not?”  I’ve signed up for the WordPress Postaweek2011 Challenge but I’ve been trying to post more often than that.  There’s a certain thrill in completing these so-called “writing assignments” as blog posts as often as I can.

The title of this post illustrates my position that I have a need to believe that things happen for a reason – that there is “A Reason Behind the Madness” of the events which transpire in the world and in our lives.  I cannot be be certain what the exact reason behind the madness is but it gives me great comfort that a reason exists – and if it doesn’t, it should.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*Copyright applicable to the text only

Let me tell you about this book I “coincidentally” stumbled across in a second hand bookshop.  It’s called “Beyond Coincidence” written by Martin Plimmer and Brian King.  At first I thought it might be just a collection of amusing anecdotes – and I’ve read my fair share of similar accounts – but was surprised (and pleased) to find that it was more than that.

“Beyond Coincidence” is a collection of interesting (and unbelievable) stories which inevitably stretch our belief of the laws of probability.  The accounts are interspersed with philosophical, scientific, and psychological insights, touching on the fascinating field of quantum physics, which inevitably restores our sense of wonder in a universe – a welcome sensation for the exhausted, world-weary and cynical.

(c) Niconica 2011*

*The copyright applies to the text of the blog post, and not the image in the blog post.

When is Enough Really Enough? How many repeated apologies with questionable sincerity does it take for us to get the point?  How many repeated offenses and feeble excuses do we have to swallow before it gets to the point that we feel that it is already too much?

I walk the fine line between compassion and practicality.  When people have gone through so much trauma in their lives, is it fair for them to take it out on other people?  When we are the people they take it out on – we become the prey.  In such cases, it is sometimes hard to figure out where patience ends and stupidity begins.

There’s a fine line between being a tolerant person and being an idiot and when we find ourself in this gray area, its hard to tell where we stand.  When we allow people to repeatedly verbally, emotionally, psychologically, and/or physically abuse us, we are perpetrating gross negligence towards ourselves.

When we allow other people to get away with virtually anything less than decent behavior and short of any major crime, it is irresponsible behavior on our part.  It is irresponsible behavior towards ourselves, for are we not the wardens of our own well-being?

If we as much as defend ourselves or at the very least set boundaries, it is not about changing people’s minds, dictating their behavior, meting out punishment or taking revenge on people.  It is about respecting ourselves enough that we do not allow people to treat us like rubbish – without treating them like dirt as well.

It’s not about rallying people to crucify a certain person or to initiate an exercise in self-righteousness which might turn into a witch hunt.  It is simply about knowing and loving ourselves enough to set boundaries for what we allow others to say and do to us… and learning to leave, to disengage, and to walk away – to basically not be present in questionable company to allow such behavior – when it is already too much – indeed, when enough is enough.

(c) Niconica 2010