Sunday, November 28, 2010

Change :D

Loose coins becoming
I, your eyes
in a waking state...
penetrate your deepdesire
and I see what you hide...why and what
you have pained yourself to hide
I know you now through your smile
Just notes

Betrayal: to the perpetrator
it is a realization of a reprioritization. One discovers (this is the 'heroic' self view) that one values a hierarchy different than one first imagined. One feels the 'betrayal' to be 'being true to oneself' and correcting an error in the balance. To not act in such a manner becomes betrayal of the self.
Betrayal is only in the eyes, then of the betrayed; a belief in another being.

This is the highest form of self buffering... in the eye of the betrayer.

In 'betrayal,' a false idea is destroyed (or rather an idea is shown to be false). What creates a 'betrayal' is when this idea is sacred to an entity. Thus, to remedy betrayal, one of two things must happen. The idea must be reasserted as sacred or the belief in its sanctity must be abandoned.
Frozen leaves dream of autumn's ending
The trees ripe past due
Walk outside with irked air
Clouded cold
Vestibule to mountain's mourning

Sacrificing the Beauty of Life to Deny Death

"Perhaps the whole root of our trouble, the human trouble, is that we will sacrifice all the beauty of our lives, will imprison ourselves in totems, taboos, crosses, blood sacrifices, steeples, mosques, races, armies, flags, nations, in order to deny the fact of death, which is the only fact we have."
-James Baldwin

Often we identify ourselves by the things that we do or have. If we have a large four-bedroom house we may think of ourselves as rich, whereas if we earn a small paycheck or none, we may consider ourselves poor. Whether we are these adjectives or not doesn't really matter because they only offer a temporary label.

What does make a difference is if we believe ourselves to be these ideas. Once we identify ourselves as rich and believe it - we become trapped. We isolate ourselves from others by this arbitrary distinction born from our thoughts. This belief alters the way at which we look at the world. We begin to see others only as "like me" and "against me". We close off any genuine open connection before it is even given a chance to evolve.

The mere fact of recognizing someone else as poor or rich belittles our shaky belief, unless we refuse to identify the other as an equal human. If we can see why someone else is rich or poor, we begin to empathize with them and notice similarities to our condition. If we quickly box people off into these static labels, we don't see the poor man as another human-being and lose the chance to connect with him because we've already emphasized the differences. Rich and poor are temporary conditions. These change and the more we grasp at them and try to prevent their natural progression, the more pain we feel.

By identifying himself as a rich man, not only do others get isolated, the labeler loses hope for himself. He loses the hope to change. To accept being rich as who he is, this man denies himself the liberty to change. He becomes rigid and sharp towards others who threaten to take away his conception. If this man suddenly becomes poor, will this change his outlook on life? If re-acquiring his riches no longer becomes an option, will "being poor" eventually become who he is? Is there a difference between these two self-labels?

To accept that nothing that we consider ourselves to be, is secure, scares most people. It frightens many people into blindness. All human beings share the fact of change and death. With this acceptance, our lives become our expression of change - we can use it as an advantage. Can we keep our back straight in the face of death and live with confidence? Do we choose to hide behind a rigid structure for our protection at the price of our freedom to change? Can we open our eyes to every one's imminent downfall and help everyone enjoy their time to live?

Friday, November 26, 2010

Hollow Friendship

My time abroad in Morocco was an experience. New food and exotic women taught me more than the history classes that had awarded me with a master's degree. The whole time, my psyche balanced between excitement and all-out terror. Every day was a hard teacher. Even after a year, everything around me still seemed brand-new. A whole world that accepted me as a curious alien, still held me in it's foreign grip on the flight back to America. When I stepped out of the plane into San Francisco International airport, I felt grounded for the first time in a year - I was home. I could breathe.

I was welcomed back warmly. My parents gathered our small family together, and we celebrated my return with a good American meal. I was very excited to get back into touch with my friends and tell them about my trip. Thom, one of the first to get in touch with me, messaged me on Facebook when he saw that I was back. We had become close friends as house-mates after college in a warm Lincoln Heights neighborhood.

I agreed to meet Thom at Frankie's on Divisadero. Arriving first, I took a seat facing the entrance. The cafe bustled with an equal mix of some artsy and some intellectual types. I flatter myself to think that I'm somewhere in between.

I saw Thom before he entered from the darkened street. He held his arms stiff in his dark jacket's deep pockets as he hastened towards the door with his shoulders up near his ears. A scarf was wrapped across his neck covering his mouth up to his nose and he wore a black winter hat. His frosted breath quickly dissipated when he closed the glass door and started to remove his black gloves. I threw up a two finger salute to accompany my head nod and stood up to greet my friend.

After we shook hands and succeeded in a pleasant though formal greeting, we both ordered a hot coffee before returning to our table. He asked me about Morocco - I couldn't wait to talk about it. I told him how my classes were all in the afternoon, so I was free to get out at night and explore and not have to wake up early. I met a guide, Tariq, who helped open me up to exciting sights I hadn't heard of. I got close to him throughout my extended visit and began to rely on Tariq's friendship and his expertise on the country. Thom raised his eye brows and moved his head back when I indulged in a bit of travel boasting about my female catches. The almond-eyed beauties I landed were by far the highlight of my foreign escapade.

After he gave me an update on his situation, Thom swayed the topic back to our last few months together before I went away to Morocco. I had last seen Thom when I left our Lincoln Heights house for San Francisco a month before my flight to make preparations from my family's place. At about the same time, Thom was moving to Sacramento because of his sour break up with his girlfriend, Alana. She ended up moving up to San Francisco about the same time he left Lincoln Heights. I had seen Alana in the city before I flew.

"What happened with you and Alana?" Thom asked. "I talked to her before I moved and she said that she wanted to meet up with you before you left for Morocco. What happened?"

I wasn't sure what he knew or what he had heard. Yes he was right. She had seen me - and not just once.

"We met for coffee much like you and I are doing right now," I answered.

He put both of his elbows on the table and leaned some of his weight into them. It had been more than a full year since then and it surprised me that he was still agitated. He clasped his hands and rested his bearded chin on them. His eyes' former brightness had dulled and his once fair skin seemed greyed.

"Did you sleep with her?" he intoned.

I couldn't tell him the truth. It just felt wrong.

"No," I said keeping my eye contact gentle, "we just got coffee and talked. She wished me safe travels."

He let out a breath of tension from his stomach that lowered his shoulders and arched his back slightly. I noticed some chronic tension in his face relaxing for the moment.

"Good man," Thom said. "I'm sorry I asked but I can't tell you how much that has been eating me up inside."

I can't say that I felt guilty. I didn't. I enjoyed those nights with Alana when I had nothing to lose. But I did betray his friendship twice, and in the very least, I'll admit, I've lost some trust in my own integrity. It's not what I call guilt, but I do have this feeling that what I did to Thom will come back at me. And it will probably come back hard.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Betray-He wanted something so immaculate he created her in his own mind. Away from everything and everyone, a sanctuary from the only world he knew to be so damn cruel. It wasn't love for another but love for his own creation. No one could see what he created but understood his desire. An intentional set up for failure was just the way to prove that the world truly was cruel. Make a false perfection amongst choas to seem immaculate only to burn away and give reason for the preconceived scars.

New topic for 11/24-11/26

Will says the new topic is betrayal. Go!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

waypoint flag toward verdant heights
path laid forth with snapping dangers
which i inexorably climb
to see the horror of the fall
i must know the height
so far ascended

follow the rattle, to machine fix
hollow automaton semicolon man
All around us,
It swarms and chokes,
Suffocates the will to grow.

The Future becomes more dead
Than the Past,
As the bee-hive mind swarms with scenario.

In a breath - the silent instant -
Relief can ascend from our key,
Remind our personal power to live.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Indestructable and fascinated by enduring physical pain, yet one slip and hooks pierce in this heart and pull at all corners of emotion. Incomplete thoughts collide in a tornado which is fueled by the bleeding heart, and the fury which often exalts the outside world, consumes all memory of ordinary behavior and stable emotions.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Fear of Uncertainty

Anxiety arises when fear combines with uncertainty. Often, from our modern perspective, anxiety is something to be dispelled, whereas it could have been an important survival tool thousands of years ago. Anxiety puts a person in a fight-or-flight mentality and when this stress is sustained, it causes problems for mind and body. Modern science has developed many drugs that remove the uncomfortable symptoms of anxiety like breathlessness and feelings of vertigo, but the drugs fundamentally ignore the patient's connection to the cause of anxiety.

Prescription drugs may relieve the symptoms but perhaps only a sober determination can work at this disorder's cause. These "cures" actually mask the problem and work as would a superficial skin-ointment on a broken leg. Drugs can remove anxiety's uncomfortable feelings but we are still apt to experience it day after day and therefore need drugs everyday.

Anxiety is a process and behavioral disorder that develops over years much like a bad habit. Like a bad habit, anxiety must be dealt with one step at a time. A cure-all drug will only disguise the behavioral problem.

Anxiety arises when fear combines with uncertainty. Is anything in life certain? When examined closely the short answer really is -- no. Everything is always changing and evolving and we may never truly be able to consider all the variables involved in a process to prophesize the outcome.

Therefore, anxiety is caused by our attitude towards the reality of a constantly changing world and universe. If a person tries to grip onto their current circumstances so nothing will change, that person will experience fear associated with the loss of their static life. Their tight-gripped attitude manifests itself in the body as tight muscles shallow breathing and unbalanced energy levels - symptoms of anxiety.

Acceptance that change is inevitable can shift a person's attention to what is really happening now. Instead of trying to force the future, a person can use the current raw materials in their life to sculpt the next evolution of themselves. By accepting that circumstances will change potentially even using this as an advantage, a person can experience life as it really is rather than hold onto the poisonous belief of the way life "should" be.

Topic for 11/21-11/23

I'll just use the example I gave: Anxiety

Alex said he'd write a definitive version of the 'rules' but here's a simple one. Post anything you want on this topic, poetry, essay, story, character bio for a story, etc. While the 'deadline' is the 23rd, the earlier the better as it might inspire the others. Enjoy!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Electric Thought is Expanding It's Mission

The practice of writing builds and strengthens millions of neuropathways in our brain. Because this is essential to furthering our understanding of the universe, the author's of Electric Thought are creating a community writing discipline, to support our perpetual journey into our chosen future. Our mission is to create a solid foundation for our writing practice within a supportive community.

The Electric Thought community writing discipline will begin November 21, 2010. On a rotating basis, one author, known as the Muse Maker, will select a thought provoking topic and post it onto the blog. Then every contributing author will be given the freedom to submit writing about the chosen topic in any form they wish. After three days, a new Muse Maker will be elected, and he shall select the next topic.

To begin, the topics will be chosen based on their position in the alphabet beginning with A and ending at Z. With each step in the direction of a goal, no matter how small, we become, none-the-less, one step closer to achieving our dreams. Let's begin.

The Luxury to Dream

Now - to change his destiny with a little here and there,
Promises of surprises by day, a dream,
Must awaken him from unobserved slumber where
That ideal dream will not form,
Unless that sad man will take one step in woken fear,
Toward safety's jagged edge where
Millions of moments of steps
Full of fright come before delight.

What reasons does one not dream?
For dreaming is free -
A flying man's mind has a child's pleasure
Plugged into this lightening power.
To jump from minute to hour,
Lessening his loads of desire,
The man's fantasy guides small steps
Into sync with his rhythms to think.

Unlocked, the caged animal may not bring peace
Or comfort or safety; the wildness alive
May risk, inside this man, abandonment, and
Retribution that can suddenly arise.
What use, has he, the tamed mind during dream time,
When the wilderness of walking the neuropaths
Demands no machete, no knife,
Because resistance will not clear the way for walking
Like acceptance will, unhindered.