New Beginnings

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This year has been full of tumult. I have a feeling that the next year will challenge me in new ways, before things get better.  But in this year, I have grown more than I had hoped from the beginning. And I am proud of myself.

It is amazing how you set your intent to learn and to grow, and how you never end up in exactly the place you assumed you would be in.  Learning is an ever-changing snake-like path that you will continue to ride as long as you chose to move forward.  Getting off is an option, but I think that that would be the only way to not move towards your goal of growth.

This year, I have stumbled upon the reality that my wife and I have paid tribute to, and received the benefits from the bounty of the God Shiva. The common understanding of Shiva is as the Hindu God of Death and  Rebirth.  But, my realization this year has been that Shiva is not only for the Death and Rebirth of a person or spirit, but that of ideas, and habits… Shiva is also the God of changing intention, and attitude.  Shiva is a proponent to change and growth.

Without the death of something, the growth of another cannot occur.  Since the beginning of my marriage, my wife and I have chosen each other every morning.  We do not assume that we will be together forever because we took vows.  We continually come to one another with our challenges, fears, happiness’s, inspirations, efforts, confusions, you name it. And with each new conversation, we speak, we think, we accept our initial emotions, then we think about each other, and how sometimes the person that needs to change in a hard time is us and not them.  We make the choice to grow, and with each time we chose a harder path for the other, we grow closer together.  We change.Let me come up with a clear example.Let us say she came to me with the idea of wanting another partner. (Male or female is irrelevant for this situation, but pick which over works for you)10 years ago, my mindset put me in a place that would make me angerly say, “No.”But if I inspect that emotion, why it is so strong, I would have seen that I was reacting to the idea of, “but that is my body, and I don’t want to share it with anyone else.” The concept of, “Mine.”  The concept of ownership and property. And although I would have definitely felt it strongly, it would be hard to admit that that is what it was. Because even in my 10 year younger mind, the concept of “Mine” was strong, but, I didn’t believe on ownership of a partner. (Yes, I know this conflicts, but it is amazing what you can reason past)
(I realize that for some of you, there is a religious concern, but when you think hard about that, you might also see that the idea of property is involved. And if you have a religious concern, continue reading anyway, this does not end in judgement on you or your religion.)

And when I think about what it means to me, and why I react so strongly, there are a lot of questions that come up.

Do I own her body?
Do I own her emotion?
Does she owe anything to me to listen to my concerns?
What needs am I not meeting?
Are there needs I am unable to meet?
What are her needs that drive this interest?
What about another partner is she looking for?

And it comes back to, this question was posed to me, not asked of me.  She is a wonderful strong individual, completely independent of me. This is why I love her so much. So, if there is nothing owed either way, what reason would I have to say no to her about this?

The only answer I could say, that is true, and not ego-centric about this, would be the answer to another question than we have been talking about.

Is this idea, an idea that is worth driving us apart?

I personally feel that, as a strong individual, she has complete ownership of her own mind, body, and spirit.  I am grateful for the amount of those three things she is willing to share with me. And I enjoy making choices that cause her to chose to allow me to be part of her.  But what is the limit?So, is it worth driving us apart?You could say, “No, it is not worth driving us apart.” Or, you could say, “You are a wonderful person, but, I cannot say yes to this.  But, you may make the choice to chose another person, instead of me.”I think the Sex Columnist, Dan Savage, said it best, “What is your cost of admission?”I specifically chose an example that I thought could pose some personal introspection to many people.  I can’t tell you for sure how I would answer the question above if it were posed me.  But, this process that I followed here, is a tribute to Shiva.  It is looking at my mindset, thinking hard about different perspectives, and challenging each thought to shape itself into it’s best appearance.Death of an old concept, rebirth of a new concept (formed loosely on the old)In so many small decisions, and most of the big decisions, Shiva has been the code to help us continue to chose the decision that was right, even when it required challenging growth.In the upcoming year, I hope to continue to hold favor with this God, and also hope that the challenges and decisions I need to make are smaller and less challenging, but, I am confident I have the tools to move forward either way.


Malicious Intent

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Reviewing my Facebook stream, I stumbled across on of those posts that was basically saying, “if you don’t pass this on, something terrible would happen.”  And it made me feel truly sick.

To the point that I wanted to shut down my computer and walk away.  I went through my usual frustration about why someone would pass on that tripe, and I came to a realization.

The image was Photoshopped.  And while that was a pretty obvious statement from the beginning, I realized that someone put a lot of effort and energy into making that image disturbing, and passing it around to disturb people.  I have seen many terrible things, and many of them are true things that can and do happen to people.  But this image was different.

Through an image, shared on Facebook, I could feel the response in my soul of this persons ill intent.

In an attempt to not further feed that effort, I would like to simply respond here and state that, sharing things on a social media platform, will neither alert Bill Gates that he should send you a check, nor will it give you ill luck, or a horrible disease.

Let’s be careful with what we are sharing, it can do worse things than you expect.


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So many of the changes I see in the world are around me are due to the subtleties that I can now see, as well as the new perspective I am willing to accept. The subtleties have always been there, I just didn’t see them before. It could be that I wasn’t looking, but I think it actually has to do with the fact that I didn’t know to look. There are several ways to explain this; First, what are you good at? What have you studied?

I have been studying in the Martial Arts for about 25 years, and I have to tell you that it has ruined many Martial Arts movies for me. Now that I know what I know about Martial Arts, most “Martial Arts” movies, really qualify as an aggressive dance film. And have only a little more action than “Dirty Dancing” or “Step it up”. The difference is that I can now see that the movements in the Martial Arts movies, are dance moves (or actual martial arts movements made to be a dance) that are choreographed to be flashy for film. When you learn more, you can see things you didn’t see before.

Learning to do something, is like a means of learning a language about that thing. So, the more words you learn in a language, the more specifically you can speak from within that language.

Imagine that you were in a space ship, you were a couple million light years outside our solar system. Let’s say you activated the Time Machine button and traveled to 14 billion years ago. Would you have any way to tell if it worked? You would start in the black of deep space, you would end in the black of deep space. Or, did you know, that as a scientific fact, if you were to enter the event horizon of a black whole, the change in the gravity would be so immense that you would lose concept of time? if you had a friend, that was falling into the black hole near you, but had not yet reached it… To them, you would appear to freeze in time. To you, they would appear to ages before your very eyes.

Imagine that you are truly immortal. You cannot be killed. You have no recollection of any creation or birth. How do you judge time? If there is no end date, does each day have so much importance? Does time have value to you if it is truly infinite? To make this a little more tangible, think about how slowly or quickly time seems to go for you. Everyone with whom I have spoken, tells me that the years just seem to go faster, the older you get. Imagine how long a day feels to you in your 30’s or 40’s compared to the length of the day from when you were 7. Now think how quickly a day must go by if you were 250 years old…

If everything we experience is finite, isn’t it worth finding the subtleties that teach us the value?