Little Worlds

Do you ever wonder what it’s like to be an insect? To be so teeny tiny that you can sit on a leaf? To live in a world so small that each minute is like a day? I do. Every time I see a butterfly or a dragonfly or a bee, I try to imagine myself in that little world… Continue reading

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Merry and Happy

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas/Hannukah/Kwanzaa/Solstice/Festivus/break from work and I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year. I know I push Atheism a lot on my blog but I truly believe “the holiday season” is for everyone. Without the warmth of festive family gatherings, good food and presents to buffer the harsh arrival of winter I think the world would be a colder place. While the “Happy Birthday Jesus” and “Jesus is the reason for the season” crap does annoy the piss out of me, I can still appreciate a beautifully decorated Christmas tree just the same as anybody and I can enjoy the gift of giving without being reminded of the Nativity story ad nauseum.
So whether somebody chooses to say “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Holidays” makes no difference to me, all I hear is the “merry” or “happy,” to which I say thank you. How can I not appreciate somebody wanting me to be happy?

Success

This morning I read a good article about success. I share the sentiments of the author, and I would like to kind of build upon what was said there in this entry. To summarize, the author basically was saying that he doesn’t live his life in a constant climb to the top. He feels he would have to compromise too many of his personal values to make more money and basically his dignity is more important than his paycheck. I think that is a fantastic attitude to have and I wish our society made it easier for good, honest people to find themselves in positions of power without having to lie, cheat, or steal to get there. Maybe then we’d have a government with less corruption. All I can do is speculate… Continue reading

Positive thinking

I carry a lot of anger with me; anger with those who disagree with/are different from me and anger with myself. However all this anger is paired with a great deal of hope and even love. I generally think of myself as an upbeat person, but the more I look back and reflect on my internal dialogues throughout life, the more I realize that I can be a very negative person. I really don’t like that about myself, and I am working on changing that. I want positive thoughts to trump negative ones and I think for this post I’m going to reflect on the various scales to which this kind of cognitive model can apply. I am starting where I have the most shameful negative thinking and working my way to more general and less invasive thoughts. Continue reading

Intermission – Blegh

After getting all that off my chest in the previous post, I promise that my next entry will be about something that makes me happy. I’m tired of complaining but this is the only outlet I have to do so on my terms. It’s much easier to make passionately angry posts than it is to write something cheery and uplifting and in my personal quest to improve my writing I’m hoping to change that.

“Emerging Adulthood”

Recently in the news there have been stories of this theory of a recognizable developmental stage that takes place between adolescence and the settled living most achieve sometime in their 30s. It has been coined as “Emerging Adulthood.” Originally on my way out the door this morning I had planned to write a little bit reflecting on how I’ve changed through the years. I ended up reading a 10 page article in the new york times about this developmental stage first. I could write a long entry about my opinion on this theory, but that would be redundant and kinda boring (especially if you read the article). As this is my blog and a tool for my own personal growth, I am going to compromise and reflect on my own emerging adulthood. Continue reading

the modern family

this is more loosely structured than past posts.. consider it more of a free write.

So I’ve been away for a little bit, apologies. You all know how the holidays are…
Semi-related::; Something has been in the forefront of my mind lately, and that is the general expectation of what a family should be like. We all (if not most) have this image in our minds, an image that has been hammered into the back of our skulls by entertainment and books and religion, of the perfect family. You know, a man, a woman, and a couple of youngins.. a nice little house with green grass and a pooch. Let’s be honest here, that kind of setup rarely works. After witnessing two divorces (and another on the way), alcoholism and incarceration (for child molestation) in my own immediate family I’ve pretty much started to reject the consensus that marriage + kids + home ownership = success. That compounded with a growing appreciation for the environment has led me to a new perspective on “settling.” I still hold out hope that true love does exist, but the capacity in which it can be sustained remains a mystery.

Moving on.. Continue reading

Abstract Art

I remember back in college, in my contemporary art class, we learned about non-objective and abstract expressionism art. I remember learning about artists like Pollock and Rothko, and a class discussion on non-objective art. The teacher (her name escapes me at the moment) set up a debate on whether or not abstract impressionism was really “art.” She then divided the class into two opposing sides. Going into this, I didn’t have a lot of respect for what abstract expressionism truly was, and I was dealth the “for” abstract expressionism viewpoint. I had to defend abstract expressionism as art. Each side was given two essays to read, one for and one against, and then we had to make a case for our argument and defend it. Now, it is a personal philosophy of mine to keep my mind maleable and open to change, so as I started to shift perceptions for the sake of the exercise, I learned and I felt my opinions changing.

Before I continue I want to take a moment to ask you, the reader, “what is art?” We all know the superficial interpretation as paintings and sculptures and things that are generally aesthetically pleasing. We often define it from the perspective of consumer or audience. When you can only see art from this point of view it does become very difficult to comprehend non-objective art as something that has a lot of value, especially when compared to the works of a more traditional artist like Michelangelo. The way Michelangelo recreated the human form with such detail and emotion is indeed extremely impressive. Now when you compare one of Mark Rothko’s color fields to the Sistine Chapel you might find yourself wondering how any comparison can be made. Well, this all goes back to the question “what is art?” Continue reading

Creativity

Ah yes, creativity. A demon I’ve battled a lot in my life.

“I need to think of something.”

In modern society we are under a lot of pressure to produce. A problem I find with that is that when your mind is constantly chugging along focusing on an endless list of tasks you rob yourself of the true bliss in just dwelling on nothing in particular. “What do clouds taste like?” “What language do cats think in?” It is in these moments of vacation from the stressful assembly line thought process that creation is freed from the shackles of production. When I am having difficulty thinking of something, I try to think of nothing at all. Do you ever have a zillion thoughts flying around in your head at once? It can be extremely stressful and taxing to keep track of where all these little thoughts are whizzing to. One thing I’ve learned to do in these situations is stop. When I get overwhelmed I stop everything I am doing, turn away from the task at hand and stare off into space. Not exactly a model for productivity eh? I used to do this without reason, my brain just became overloaded until it would practically float away. Being aware of my apparent uselessness as a producer of whatever, it made me feel inadequate and only fueled the cycle of anxiety. Now, I have learned to grant myself permission to daydream.

I think of my mind as a bare white room, and throughout the day objects move in and out of it. Objects of different shapes, sizes, colors, etc. These are my thoughts. The thoughts or objects that are most useful or interesting or appealing, etc, I tend to keep in the room the longest. After a while I collect more and more objects until the room is so cluttered nothing else can come in. This is when productivity and creativity come to a screeching halt. Before I would open a window or move stuff around in the room so as not to stifle the completion of tasks. But now I completely release myself from the mental assembly line, guilt free. Why? Because meaningless daydreaming makes the clutter disappear. After no time at all, I have a clean bare room. Now fresh new objects are free to enter again.

The point? Doing nothing may not feed productivity, but it is the blank canvas of creativity. At the end of the day are you more fulfilled when you have produced what is expected or when you have created something truly your own that can be invested in?

Self Image

venuscabanel

Alexandre Cabanel's "Birth of Venus"

Today on google, for fun I decided to look up how to be writer. I started typing “how to be” and I stopped, because two of the suggested searches were “how to be anorexic, ” and “how to become anorexic.” I am but a young woman of 24, and I am lucky to have been blessed with a good metabolism. I’ve been thin all of my life. However that doesn’t translate to a positive body image my whole life.

Continue reading