Wednesday, February 14, 2007

cannot remember the last time i was carefree

i hate forwarded email.

once in a while though, something breaks through the clutter...
and hits home.

i cannot remember the last time i felt carefree.
nor the last time i felt relaxed and safe in life.

many reasons account for this:
a tough childhood.
issues with authority.
bouts with poverty in the past.
a broken heart.

i remember a film criticism class way back in college.
the professor asked:
why do human beings constantly dissect things, just like we do in film?

i answered:
to understand the smaller components that make up the larger whole, in this case a film.

he surprised me with a follow-up question.
and asked?
why do we need to understand the smaller components?

i answered:
to understand how these smaller components affect the whole?

he asked:
and why do we need to do this?

i answered:
so we can learn to control the smaller components,
and in turn control the result.
and this was how humanity survived this long.
by controlling the environment.
by not being a victim to it.
if we were hot, we manipulated the temperature.
if we were cold, we turned on the heater.
by knowing the composition of matter, we possess the capacity to manipulate it to our advantage.
we now control our lives.

his final remark:
very good.

now, i go back to this same logic.

i can safely tell you that i have issues with control.
for someone who started as a very shy kid,
my Alpha Male personality somehow developed.
you notice it in how i talk.
how impatient i am with people.
how i interrupt people in mid sentence if their logic bore me.
how i crush people with lesser intelligence.
how ambitious and urgent i am with my goals, in an effort to be wealthy and successful.
because with immense wealth and influence, i know my cards have the upper advantage.
providing me with more leverage and bargaining power.
and by reaching my peak, i will never depend on anyone again.

the only problem is:
i have lost my warmth.

when you cross over to the darker side,
there comes a point that the training to be cold becomes so practiced that it becomes entrenched.
that it is difficult to even remember how to be warm again.

what is the advantage of being warm anyway?
in corporate America, it is useless.
in the road to power and wealth, it is a burden.

but i do miss it.

with warmth comes a lightness of heart.
a sense of trust.
a sense of safety.
and i can only count 3 moments in my life that i slept peacefully.

so, this forwarded email,
that a good friend of mine sent me:
touched a very raw but hidden nerve.

for this, i am most grateful to Cherrie.
may this help me sleep better soon...

final note:
my friends know not to preach matters of God to me.
as i am spiritual (having created a system of beliefs that is highly individual and customized).
this email though transcends religion.
proving that true faith has nothing to do with a blind belief in doctrine.
i will be completely honest and say that I only like the first half of this email.
and i hate it when religious people claim that God makes us suffer to test us, in an effort to make us whole.
the God i believe in is a nourishing force, not one manipulating us like puppets, testing us and waiting for us to screw up.
to believe in God coming from a place of fear is victimizing.
and the whole point of spirituality is growth and empowerment.
but i opted to respect Cherrie's email (and its potential for wisdom) by posting it whole.
i owe this email that much anyway :)
(read: A Conversation with God by Neale Donald Walsch - it more or less encapsulates what my spirituality is all about = more people will hopefully read it)

see the forwarded email below:

Author Unknown

The best gift anyone can give me this new year is a planner.
I like planners because I am a planner.
I like thinking ahead.
I like being prepared.
I get a high from being on top of things.

But some things are beyond planning.
And life doesn't always turn out as planned.

You don't plan for a broken heart.
You don't plan for a failed business venture.
You don't plan for an adulterous husband.
Or a wife who wants you out of her life.
You don't plan for an autistic child.
You don't plan for spinsterhood.
You don't plan for a lump in your breast.

You plan to be young forever. You plan to climb the corporate ladder.
You plan to be rich and powerful.
You plan to be acclaimed and successful.
You plan to conquer the universe.
You plan to fall in love - and be loved forever.

You don't plan to be sad.
You don't plan to be hurt.
You don't plan to be broke.
You don't plan to be betrayed.
You don't plan to be alone in this world

You plan to be happy. You don't plan to be shattered.
Sometimes if you work hard enough, you can get what you want.
But most times, what you want and what you get are two different things.

We, mortals, plan. But so does God in the heavens.
Sometimes, it is difficult to understand God's plans
especially when His plans are not in consonance with ours.
Often, when God sends us crisis, we turn to Him in anger.
True, we cannot choose the cross that God wishes us to carry,
but we can carry that cross with courage
knowing that God will never abandon us
nor send something we cannot cope with.

Sometimes, God breaks our spirit to save our soul.
Sometimes, He breaks our heart to make us whole.
Sometimes, God sends us pain so we can be stronger.
Sometimes, God sends us failure so we can be humble.
Sometimes God sends us illness so we can take better care of ourselves.
Sometimes, God takes everything away from us
so we can learn the value of everything He gave us.

Make plans but understand that we live by God's grace.

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