Saturday, January 30, 2010

No Man is an Island

It's funny how events can converge in a moment of fantastic revelation. Such a converging took place a few moments ago. Where did it start? It's hard to say, who's to say that it didn't start about 31 years ago to lead up to this point, but to cut off the risk getting too deep, I'll explain.
J.D. Salinger died....wait, before that. Rather, I've finished my last requirement for my PhD candidacy and the feeling is intense. I've made it halfway and that means I'm at the top of the hill, no it's back down carefully to the finish line. At this moment, homework still beckons so I'm sitting there with two friends of mine and the conversation drifts from solid structure and Bravais lattices to life. What is it? How do we define it? I'll save you from the finer points, but the conflicting argument what is the meaning, is it pleasure from personal gain or joy from connecting to others? Does a Buddhist monk in isolation have just as much joy as the missionary helping build a school in a village and providing medicine, clean water, food, knowledge for creating a higher quality of living? Does the hermit in the mountains accompanied by only nature harness as much joy as those who provide food and shelter to the homeless or open their homes to those who have no place to stay? Who has captured the essence of la vie? Hold that thought.

My father once said his favorite movie is Groundhog day. He explained that the movie is one of the few that shows true character development of someone in a genuine way. Lo, and behold it was on today and I'd never seen it so it being a snow/ice day, I decided to indulge. A man starts out a selfish, egotistical and boorish man who realizes through the repetition of the same day that't happen through the hot girl you see or all the money you can spend or every indulgence you can imagine whether it's academic, religious, industrial, artistic, or physical. He realizes it comes from helping others, it comes from making them feel good, like they matter, that someone in this world doesn't want them for something, but wants them because their human, God's pinnacle of creation mad in His image. Salinger died yesterday. 91 years old, most of those lived in isolation up in the northeast. He wrote what is known as the quintessential "Great American novel" quite an accomplishment for any lifetime, but the only thing I kept thinking of is...what else did he do? His obituary is Catcher in the Rye. His legacy is Catcher in the Rye. What did he like for breakfast? Catcher in the Rye. Did he have a love of his life? Catcher in the Rye. Was their a childhood memory that he held dear? Catcher in the Rye. What was the song that reminded him of his teenage years? Catcher in the Rye. Why is their no answer but that? Because he cut himself off and decided life was best spent alone. He sacrificed a life that could have changed others beyond a book to have some peace and quiet. Some expensive peace.

Now every one is entitled to be wrong and I leave that to them, but a satisfying life does not come only from a sunset or a flower or denying self or sacrificing animals or selfish indulgence to satisfy all the senses. It comes from relationship with those around you, with your Creator; it comes from realizing everyone is the same deep deep down, we all want to be loved because that is what the Creator and the thought of anything that opposes that basic need scares the hell out of man so he tries to fill it with everything he can. But it doesn't work...

The other night I heard on the radio an interview with a Holocaust survivor. What did she learn in her life, they asked? She learned to forgive because forgiveness is always in your power and it gives you strength to live the life Elohim wants you to, one free of regret or pain or bitterness. She really gets it. How come so few others do?

You want to live life? Then love and accept love without any apprehension or doubt for what will happen tomorrow. Easier said than done, but damn it, I want to learn it more than anything you can learn in this life.

I'm out......

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Birthday Post: any regrets?

Happy Birthday to me!! Figured I'd give myself a shout out on this one. It's been a good one beside the fact that Hurricane Ida has decided to dump her leftovers on the whole state, but, other than that, it was a great 31st. I decided to post a quick blog today because I was reading an article about a group of guys who after a thrilling tie football game between two high school rivals in 1993, they decided to play again in their 30's to settle the game once and for all. The article asked who wouldn't jump at the opportunity to have a second chance, not just at a game but career move or a relationship and assumed most would. I guess I'm the minority because I have not one event I can look back on and say my life took a turn to a point where I should have done otherwise. I believe in 31 years, I've made PLENTY of mistakes and still make them. I've lied to people, used them, lied to myself, acted out of fear, froze out of fear, and said things to people that I would not today. Would I do it over? Never. Not that I don't believe I didn't do wrong or didn't need forgiveness for it, but, rather, all those events shaped my world today. It brought me to this point where I'm immensely happy with a wonderful life, wonderful woman, and a wonderful future that Jehovah has seen fit to bless me with. Of all my bad decisions, He brought about good out of it. Sure there were games I lost, times I should have spoken up, people I should have said the right thing too, but as the song goes: this will all make sense one day. No regrets; because I love my life and I wouldn't trade it for anyone else's and that truly is the best birthday present I've been given. Blessings, people, I'm out!

Friday, October 23, 2009

don't wanna be a player no more....

Wassup subscribers! Alot has happened in the past month. I lost my first grandparent who was called home to be with the Cornerstone and I can't wait to see her again in Paradise. I decided to make an honest woman out of the only person in the world who not only can truly put up with me, but love me and enjoy on top of the that. How do you pass someone like that up? Even better, it ties into my blog topic today.

For those who know me, I'm not really a fan of talk shows in general but really can't stand the fact that Tyra continues to have one (an Emmy really? So there IS a casting couch for award shows! Should have figured it out when Marisa Tomei won an Oscar...) so I find myself checking periodically when she's on to see how many personal references on her part are taking place on there to get a good laugh. The other day, she had on so called "playas" and decided to check on it to see Tyra's superior logic and interviewing skills. That lasted 2 sec. Then I just listened to the guys. Besides the fact that one of the guys was a total clown and hit on anything with breasts (the shotgun effect, works for even ugly dudes) one cat said something interesting. He didn't believe in marriage (although he's living with a girl now) and then mentioned the fact that he saw his mother who was successful, had a career, advanced degree, and then got married and all when out the window for a man that wasn't worth it. After that, his relationship was never the same with her and he lost all respect for women and decided to use them for whatever he wanted.

Now in that 2 min he talked, you can spend a year on all the subtle contexts that leap from this guy and apply it to life. The one I wanted to choose was the fact that this man made a life decision based on a mistake his mother did. So many times I've heard people ask why do bad things happen to good people and how can God let things happen in this life that do. A complex answer but in the simplest terms: free will. We desire to live in our own independence, do what we want, go where we desire, be with who we want, thinking that we are the best judges of our own life. Little do we know our smallest actions affect not only the people around us but generations to come. We have free will and we chose it but failed to realize that what we do affects other's negatively and vice versa and He can't impinge on free will. So we live in a world dominated by other's choices and the consequences of those who lived for the past few thousand years. Solution? Give up this independence that has done nothing but bring us to a point of frustration, bitterness, and fear and depend on Elohim for everything. If I hadn't made that decision to let Him lead me, where would I be? Where would those be who I've blessed, helped, or inspired? Where would I be if those in my life hadn't choose to follow Yeshua's will and done the same for me? Who would I be with if I had not chosen the queen He made only for me? Complete with independence and no peace, joy, or hope that our lives are meaningful, world changing, and glorious.

So think about your actions, even the little ones. You may want something that's not your time to have it or not to have it all and you think why not me? I deserve it. Who could it be affecting? Your family, your friends, your children? And will they judge that life is unfair when it doesn't work out and give them their own jaded views on life? Step lightly and take His hand. It's time to get this world back to what it was meant to be..... I'm out....

Thursday, September 03, 2009

Random thoughts as fall rolls in

Schools in for fall! What up people? Hope all is well. As usual, the semester starts off with a bang. It's about to go down this weekend with my 2nd part of my candidacy exams and I'll be glad to get them done after studying all summer. Then it's anxious waiting to go Screwston to see my queen. In the meantime, time to drop the fall edition of random thoughts. Enjoy.

1) I don't like to think that MJ and Luther will never make music again. It's kind of depressing.

2) Saturday Aug 8, 2009: I went to see De La Soul at Cat's cradle. Saturday Aug 8, 2009: Day I fell in love with hip hop again.

3) Sometimes you have to take a second to think that you will see your family grow from babies to one day have babies themselves. Crazy to think one day I'll get to see 3 generations (maybe 4) of my descendants. Robert Frost put it best: In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on...

4) Ok, I'm not a fan of his policies either, but people have got to relax about Obama giving a speech to kids under the suspicion of brainwashing. The man is not the AntiChrist, trust me. With the AntiChrist, EVERYONE will love him.

5) We should bring back suits and hats like the fifties. That would be classy.

6) I only got to play golf once this summer. :o( One day I'll have all the time and money and then I'll catch up on my rounds.

7) Facebook is getting too popular. I remember when it was about school networking. Now your grandmother, the mailman, homeless Joe on the corner, and inmates can get one.

8) Is Twitting done yet?

9) The beauty of fall: changing leaves, changing temperatures, anticipation of holidays....and new seasons of all your favorite shows! Sad I know....

10) Speaking of which, not feeling how they are starting off this 90210. They are going for the raunch factor and screwing Annie's character. No wonder they are making more reality shows, the writers in Hollyweed are starting to suck.

11) Although, gotta say, I LOVE 30 Rock.

12) Couldn't have Shawn Merriman finished the job? I'm just saying.

13) P Diddy is the devil.

14) I think Drake has worn out his welcome. For all those business majors: Oversaturation is bad thing.

15) College football is back. *sniff* It's been so long.

16) Anyone else notice that more R&B singers are singing like they are castrated? We had the whole Rat Pack, Barry White, Lou Rawls, Nat King Cole, Will Downing, even Elvis and now we have everybody singing like girls. Screw the cowboys, where have all the baritones and tenors gone?

17) Miles Davis was a flat out genius...genius. If you don't know, watch or read his bio.

18) Ok, is it me or did Christina and The Dream pull a Nick and Mariah? Oh yeah, Nick and Mariah, you can stop now, your careers have managed to continue so call the whole thing off.

19) Media, until Speidi catch swine flu or are hit by a bus or some other life ending event, I don't want to see them on my TV. EVER.

20) "God is love" -Rev. Run


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

love is....

Wassup people? I've been really busy as of late with finishing summer sessions and tutoring. It's at least allowed me to ignore the news (which is always a good thing) and just moving from point to point and focusing on getting work done. In the meantime, it's allowed me to listen to more music and I've been pleased with the new Chico DeBarge. A lot of hype has been around Maxwell's return but to be honest, I just haven't been wowed by his album. It has a few decent cuts but the only one I really love is Pretty Wings. Also a little disappointed with Chrisette Michele sophomore effort, a few good cuts but nothing to write home about. I have to say I love the new Mos Def, he seems like he's back to form now that he's with a new label and happy.

I've also just been playing my Itunes library straight through as I go through the day and I've come to a realization. I believe that after reading the Shack and coming to a fuller understanding of God, that art (movies, music, and books) have a skewed version of what love is at times. For example, I've heard this often in my many songs of love: love is it's not. Love is a byproduct of a fundamental choice: do you wish to know the fullness of God and His nature, because He is love. And beyond the cursory: "God is Love" Rev Run phrase and t-shirt slogans, if you focus on that statement, the truth is inevitable, you can only know true love if you know the true God. People throw the word around not realizing a fundamental thing; the only true statement of love can be made if you can in replace the word "love" with "God". I hear the phrase "love is joy, love is pain" so by that reasoning God is joy, God is pain. He's not pain, He endured pain as a man in order for us to experience daily joy.

We have thousands of songs that talk about love will cause you such sorrow but it's worth it for the sake of love. That's a lie and it implies we have to suffer to know true love when it's actually the opposite, we can experience true love because Love suffered on a cross 2000 years ago. Love is not conditional, He's an absolute, He's not there one day and gone the next. People talk about falling out of love, what happens is people choose to no longer know Love and put Him at the center of their life. They chase after things that offer a shallow thrill and all the Love gives them they reject because they get distracted with things that aren't important.

Other songs speak of love making you hold on to someone not worth holding on too. Fear does that and a false hope that one cannot make it without the other person and one day that person will realize that too. Wishful thinking most times.

So the question is: does life imitate art or vice versa? Do we do them because it's in our nature or do we do it because we hear it and we get these romantic notions? I'm not saying all songs have missed it but too many do giving Love a bad name when He is more than perfect. Give it a thought and start making the switch when you hear those songs about love. If it isn't beautiful, holy, precious, and ain't Love.....

I'm out....

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Human Nature

Yesterday brought about the death of a musical icon who regardless of his personal life influenced generations of artists and redefined music as we know it. When I heard the news and saw the endless MJ videos on BET, it hit me. There a number of life lessons that can be learned but the one that came to me in an epiphany after repeating the same phrase over and over: I never expected it to happen so soon, but then I realized something: I took him for granted. I always thought there would be another comeback album that would return him to the King of Pop throne. Then I thought about how much we take for granted in every aspect of our lives. Our families who love us after all the ups and downs, mistakes, heated words, short tempers, times of loss, struggle, joys, accomplishments, and moments that gave us wisdom. Those loved ones in our lives who brighten our day just by hearing their voice, cards and letters they wrote from long ago that still warm your heart and humble you to know you can be loved in that way, who make a difference in your day by just smiling. We have a tendency to look a gift horse in the mouth, so to speak. Whether it is because we feel we deserve it or so busy worried about other aspects of life that really don't matter in the grand scheme of things. There's a classic line from a Lyfe Jennings' song that says: down on your knees praying for that new Porsche while she's walking out that door. Sometimes we need to remember that who, not what is in our lives is the most important and remember that God likes to hear thank you as well as your loved ones. Don't take them for granted because life is short, but a handbreadth, so let them know you love 'em.

I'm out, Blessings, peace and hair grease!

Tuesday, June 09, 2009

random thoughts of June

1) I'm loving Conan on the Tonight Show, my favorite Irishman has finally made it. Poor Jimmy Fallon, he's like a deer in headlights.

2) AMERIE is back!! Not only beautiful but she can sing and actually has good beats. Beyonce, take a memo (you think being married to greatest rapper alive might give you reason to actually be original....)

3) I'm sorry for David Carradine's family but that man was overrated....

4) On that note, where did that phrase come from, "don't speak ill of the dead"? I think the last thing dead folks are worried about is what people alive are saying since there are more pressing issues like, say....standing in front of your Maker.

5) When's Honda going to start selling those walking robots? I want one...

6) I'm going to need for pastors to stop talking about politics and start talking about Jesus.

7) New Jersey is about to legalize weed. Finally! Maybe we can end this ridiculous war on drugs and start releasing folks in jail on non-violent drug crimes and start using drug taxes to pay off these state budget deficits. 

8) Ever notice how mankind is obsessed with bad news?

9) What did Shakespeare say? First, we kill all the lawyers? Well, I add an amendment to that: second, we kill all the politicians. 

10) Hate to break the news to people at the Discovery channel but the show "The World after People" is as useful as "The world filled with Unicorns" because we're not going anywhere. 

11) Classic quote from the Devil's Advocate: "Free is a b***h." It can be, if you choose independence like Adam did. 

12) If people saw a man smacking a woman in public, how many would actually intervene? 

13) I'm a celebrity, get me outta here. Here's a title: I'm a TV viewer, I deserve more!

14) Transformers, GI Joe, now I just need a Thundercats movie and I'm living the glorious 80's the way I was meant to. 

15) Why is Tyra still on? Why is she relevant? Why weren't her parents just too tired that night 35 years ago?

16) Women should really trust their intuition and not listen to society's standards. A man is  supposed to take care of you just like you are supposed to provide your part of the relationship. Men and women are equal but that doesn't mean we are the same. 

17) First Florida wins the national football championship, then Carolina wins basketball, then the Steelers win ANOTHER Super bowl (like they needed one), now it looks like the Lakers and Red wings will win their championships. Now all I need is the Yankees to win the World Series and it will officially be the worst year of sports in my life.  

18) I love how Zoe Saldana stood up for the thin girls; they don't get enough love. 


20) Brett Favre, GO HOME! Tired of this on again, off again crap.....

and bonus,

21) 2 months, 2 weeks and 4 days until college close yet so far.....