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would you get a load of that…life philosophy on relationships

November 12, 2010 Leave a comment

i’m recycling an old facebook note on this blog, it may not be up to date on what I’m thinking nowadays, but you’ll hear something more recent soon.

enjoy:

when it comes to relationships/life…fear is one thing that drives us all too much. we’re afraid that we’re not good enough. we’re afraid to miss out on something. we’re afraid that if we give our everything that it just may not be good enough. but those are all really really bad excuses for not putting everything out on the field. i say that you have to just go out there and do your thing and live with the consequences. if you dont put everything out on the field and live your life in fear, then the consequence is a life of regret. but you also have to accept that and move on. you know?

by nature, we are autonomous beings. we know how to care for ourselves. we feed ourselves. we sleep and we take care of ourselves. some of us dont know what that means mentally and therefore, we’re screwed up. actually, a lot of us havent taken care of ourselves mentally. we’ve lost a sense of ourself. we’ve forgotten and defined ourselves by meaningless things that fall through and we’re constantly searching for a sense of self worth. BUT, once you’ve found that sense of self worth, then the challenge and the learning in life isn’t so much centered on who you are as an individual…at that point, you know who you are…you are that which you center your sense of self worth by. the challenge, then, comes in the form of relationships and interacting with people who are different/have differences. love is not about ignoring other people’s flaws and their differences and what’s screwed up about them, love is about reconciling those differences, in love. there’s a big difference between simply ignoring and the struggle of reconciling, but there is a kind of redemption in reconciliation. a redemption of the soul and of self. and if you care for someone enough, you want that for them…for them to be whole and complete again. love is about sharing…sharing those passions, sharing the experiences, sharing you. you may learn how to share in kindergarden, but not your life. you share material possessions and food, but not true intimacy. you remember that line from Good Will Hunting, “You don’t know about real loss, ’cause that only occurs when you love something more than you love yourself. I doubt you’ve ever dared to love anybody that much.” it’s loss because when you lose the person you care about, you lose a part of yourself because your lives have become conjoined. the beauty of relationships, in my opinion, is that you no longer have to go out and do the searching for good restaurants, these cool experiences, thoughts and ideas on your own. you have someone else who’s doing them, going to these cool places or hearing of them and they want to take you with them. moreover, they think thoughts or have these ideas that would’ve never crossed your mind, but they are sharing them with you because they’d rather experience it with somone because it’s 1000x more awesome when it’s shared….especially with the person you love. so you’re not on your own, but it’s like the magic carpet ride from Aladdin…you can experience a whole new world. and as cheesy as it sounds….isnt one of our biggest insecurities that we’d miss out on something? when we’re younger and we dont get invited to a bday party, we’re partly upset because he/she didnt invite us, but we’re also upset because we’re missing out on the good time others are having so that when you get to school on monday and everyone’s talking about the fun birthday party at chuck e. cheese that happened on friday, you have no idea what they’re talking about. and i think that’s the worst feeling of all…missing out on something great. and this haunts us and is one of our biggest insecurities…that we’re not taking part in something awesome. that’s what happens to people when they’re dating others…the one’s that feel tied down, feel that way sometimes because they feel like they’re missing out on something. but i think the beauty of relationship is that you have another pair of eyes, another someone who’s doing the looking on behalf of both people so that if there is something awesome out there, whether it be a restaurant, a show, a vacation, a movie, an idea, a poem, a joke, you both can have it and have it together.

if you want a true challenge, it’s learning to reconcile ourselves with the people we love. and getting through it through the good and the bad. that’s unconditional love. and i think also an understanding that the other person is just as human as we are…so when they get upset, when they get angry, when they get mad or frustrated, it’s because they’re human. we’ll always be alright on our own. we dont need to learn love to survive on our own. we dont need to know the meaning of reconciliation or redemption to just merely exist. i’ve always said that loving people is hard…it’s no easy thing, but if you want a challenge of a lifetime. love is a lifelong challenge, well worth in my opinion. but by no means easy….we, as humans, are by nature selfish. so selfish. but maybe we can be selfishly wanting something better for someone besides ourself…how different the world would look.

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What is the world that you dream of living in look like? How do you expect people to treat each other in that world? For me, this world looks like a place where everyone can just pour out his or her goodness into the world, endlessly. It’s a world where one can just give and give and give and not grow faint or weary because everyone else is also giving, giving and giving. This is the ideal. The opposite of this looks like a world where one person gives, but doesn’t give until he or she receives that which he or she thinks he/she is owed. It’s a very transactional world, where in order for one to give, he/she needs to make certain calculations. I don’t like this type of world because it promotes the self. It promotes a type of living that is self-centered, egocentric and very much too individualized. Then, what’s the point? But then again, are we really even capable of giving and giving and giving as if our love, our energy, our ‘gifts’ are bottomless? I think we can try. However, for us to operate in such a way, we depend on others operating in a similar manner. The truth is, however, that we’re human. We want people to love us in return. We want to be recognized for our efforts. We want to receive and know that what we give is being reciprocated. And when it isn’t, we get hurt. We get upset. We get frustrated and angry. Can you blame us? I don’t think so. It’s part of what being human means. On many days, I wish I could be resilient enough to just love people endlessly. I wish I could just give and not expect anything, in the hopes that other people will give in a similar fashion. However, to hope for such a thing is to believe that other people live by that same standard, which is a standard we can keep people accountable to. So when we get upset, when we get angry, frustrated and hurt, we’re only proving one thing: we are human. Our love isn’t endless. It isn’t infinite. It’s rather, quite limited and dependent on others. We act and react. If I could choose to define love in a way, I would refer to a passage where it says: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.”

If we followed that principle, if the world lived by that principle what would that look like? It’d look beautiful, wouldn’t it? As we get there, as we are striving towards that point, we can’t give up. And we cannot lose hope and think that we are the only ones living by such a standard. Moreover, we can’t hold ourselves as better than others because we live by such a standard; this only polarizes the world. More than likely, we’ll still get upset, we’ll still hurt, still get angry and frustrated. But i think we can believe such a love exists….

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kids say the darnest things

November 8, 2010 Leave a comment

This is a response from one of my students on the writing section of her Achievement Test. The topic was about the different types of social comparison (upward and downward). I teach English to native Korean students. This girl is, I believe, an 11-year old 6th grade student.

There are two kinds of social comparison, which is upward and downward. I think I am both of them. I sometimes compare upward and sometimes I think downward. I compare upward when I see a pretty person because for example that person has big eyes, long skinny legs, small face, and tall, but I don’t have them. Also, if my friend get perfect score or she’s smart, I would compare upward. I compare downward when I see a stupid, ugly person. For example, if that person got really bad score, I would think downward. Overall, I think I compare myself downward and upward.

Categories: Uncategorized