Keep Moving

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Above is the first thing I ever sewed. I was very young and my grandmother, who loves to make quilts, was teaching me how to sew. A couple of days ago I found it in a drawer and a lot of memories came back; I put it in a place in my room where everyone who goes in (which is nobody I guess) can see it. I hope I can hold onto it for a very long time.

Yesterday was day 1; I actually made it to all my classes (even the one at 9am) which is a miracle. They were even more boring and exhausting than I remember and I don’t think I’ve ever been surer that there is no place in law for me, especially not the legal profession.

It’s beautiful and sunny, but cold. A friend who is down from Auckland and I had coffee and a good talk. I’m pretty much dead broke because of all my car troubles recently (engine/key barrel/tyre puncture problem all in the space of a week) as well as paying back some money I owed my brother so cash is non-existent and food is really tight. Yesterday I had to go to the Student Association and ask if they could help me out, which they did (thanks so much OUSA you guys are great) and so at least I won’t be starving this week.

My mood is really meh which I’m not happy about because I’ve been so on top recently. I noticed today I was listening to a song which I think I haven’t listened too in about a year. There must be something about it when I feel a certain fear/stress emotionally.

[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wRP6egIEABk]

I hope that our few remaining friends
Give up on trying to save us
I hope we come out with a fail-safe plot
To piss off the dumb few that forgave us

I hope the fences we mended
Fall down beneath their own weight
And I hope we hang on past the last exit
I hope it’s already too late

And I hope the junkyard a few blocks from here
Someday burns down
And I hope the rising black smoke carries me far away
And I never come back to this town again in my life

I hope I lie
And tell everyone you were a good wife
And I hope you die
I hope we both die

I hope I cut myself shaving tomorrow
I hope it bleeds all day long
Our friends say it’s darkest before the sun rises
We’re pretty sure they’re all wrong

I hope it stays dark forever
I hope the worst isn’t over
And I hope you blink before I do
And I hope I never get sober

And I hope when you think of me years down the line
You can’t find one good thing to say
And I’d hope that if I found the strength to walk out
You’d stay the hell out of my way

I am drowning
There is no sign of land
You are coming down with me
Hand in unlovable hand

And I hope you die
I hope we both die

Unfortunately I didn’t manage to catch up with a good friend of mine in Auckland, despite our best efforts, however we talked a bit the other day and he told me about his recent interest in the philosophy of Bushido. Basically, he summarised it to me as the idea that every thing you do, you must try to do in a state of focus and awareness. It seemed to parallel the idea of mindfulness of all things, at least in my eyes. He then said, “How and what you are doing at the moment of your death will define your entire life.” I don’t this is meant to be taken literally (ie, you’d better not sit down and do nothing or you’re being a lazy shit) but prefer to apply it to the state of mind in each thing you do. If you can focus yourself on each thing around you or each thing you do, in a meditative way, you can be at inner peace through awareness and acceptance of the universe. Strive to achieve this in all things and the moment of your death will not be one which induces fear, but defines the manner in which you lived as one of tranquillity.

Moving on. I need to stay active and stay invigorated; obviously I really have to study, but I don’t want to forget how important it is to me that I keep having fun, learning new things, doing new things and being at peace. I don’t want to get beaten down and forget where I am right now. Today I will go out and enjoy the sunshine, maybe go to the beach even (cooooold). My flatmate wants to go camping, and we met some exchange students last night who seemed keen. I’m not really feeling it but I know I should jsut say yes to the opportunity so maybe I will. Except we’ll probably all freeze to death.

Talk soon. Be peaceful and mindful (I’ll try join you in that advice too).

Missing Auckland.

Missing Auckland.

Judge Not Today.

Around a year and a half ago, I heard Deepak Chopra for the first time. I can’t say I was ever completely taken by everything he said, but there were parts which I thought had real value. Particularly, his spiritual idea of overcoming the need to judge was something which I had not realised the importance of before.
For the last year and a half I’ve worked very hard to make the maxim “Judge Not Today” an key one in my life. Ultimately, living to this ideal isn’t easy; I know I lapse back into judgement still, but in the past few weeks I’ve tried concertedly to be totally at peace from the need to judge.

What I learned is that, as long as we judge others, we can never be at peace with ourselves, because we create a rift between ourselves and the people around us. Judging is an inherently alienating process; it forces a conflict in which our ways are inherently right and somebody else’s are inherently wrong.

I noticed a few years ago that I was becoming increasingly negative and judgemental. Very quickly, these petty judgements on the way somebody looks or dresses or speaks or thinks become important in how you value other people in comparison to yourself. If you let it, this pattern of judgement will seep into and dominate you. Towards the end of my teenage years, I realised I was increasingly becoming a person who would instantly see the worst in people, and who would be closed minded and closed off to my own silliness.

I believe we should all have a determination now to be a people of positivity, for whom each person and opportunity is accepted and considered equally, and it’s almost as though a weight has been removed off me every day. One great benefit of not judging seems to me that I don’t judge myself the same way either, which is fantastic, nor do I feel the need to justify myself or appeal to others. Maybe this is all just an elaborate philosophy to allow myself to wear whatever I want, be silly and take nothing seriously 🙂

Anyway, still enjoying my week in Auckland although the weather is a bit meh now. Caught up with a friend last night and also met a bunch of new people, including one guy who was very cool; turns out he is a huge film buff, as well as writer, and just seemed an pretty cool guy. Went dancing in town though it was really quiet, but I’m checking out this Latin club in town tonight and hoping to dance some salsa. Scary, I’ve never been by myself! I think I’ll probably be missing my dance partner quite a lot.

The Oydssey Maze I spoke about a few days ago was very cool; lots of strange rooms with exciting use of lights and dark and mirror and texture. I really enjoyed it, and it really seemed like something that would be a lot of fun do myself in the future (who knows how though). If you’re in or around Auckland then you should definitely go see it; admission was $15 for a student and we were inside for around 45 mins at least. You’ll have a good time.

You need to be inside to fully appreciate it.

Regarding emotional stuff, I believe feelings only fade if you want them too, or if you let them. I don’t think there is a general rule that being apart will make you care less; so long as you want the person to remain important in your life, you’ll find away. Probably just corroborating to myself and saying what I want to hear though.

Just listening to this right now. “Be mindful of yourself without judging yourself.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RvtDFfLFIk

2-Minute Musings.

“…energy surrounds us and binds us. Luminous beings are we, not this crude matter. You must feel the Force around you; here, between you, me, the tree, the rock, everywhere, yes. Even between the land and the ship.”

Yoda is 2.5 feet tall, a goblin/alien hybrid, fictional and smarter than you or I.

I had a small moment of clarity before in which I made a connection and figured out a way to articulate something which has been banging around inside for months.

I remember reading King Lear when I was younger and taking note of the biblical reference from Mark 3:24. “If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand.” I’m not religious at all, but I believe this is a truth which transcends belief. There is no thing which can survive conflict with itself, at a small or large scale. When human brains fall to ruin, so often there is an internal conflict. Sadness and depression so often seem to come from fighting with what you want and what you are. Cancer is, ultimately, the inevitable and natural mutation of our body as it turns on itself.

We are not owners of the Earth, we are members of it. The Earth itself is an organism, and all life upon it is inexorably part of that organism; we are all equal and we are all universally linked.

As human beings, we can no longer live so oblivious to this truism. We are not masters of the Earth, we are only a part of it. As long as we abuse and exploit the Earth itself and the other organisms (just like us), we continue to turn the Earth upon itself.

Inevitably, a quick google search revealed that somebody far smarter than I had sad all this far more concisely…

Tight.

An organism at war with itself is doomed. HUMAN RACE! Stop seeing yourself as superior to the things around you; there is no excuse for slaughter and slavery, regardless of sex, race, colour or species.

‘Until he extends his circle of compassion to include all living things, man will not himself find peace.” – Albert Schweitzer

I’ve not always been aware of this, but now I am, and I hope you all will be too.

The New Leaf

07 April 2013 Curtis

Half-way through this year seems a good point to figure out what I hope to achieve with the rest of it. In no particular order, here goes:

– Learn to Surf
– Learn to Ski
– Learn French
– Learn to Dance; swing, salsa, jazz particularly
– Get good grades so I can go on exchange
– Organize my exchange (what a nightmare…)
– Visit Stewart Island (at the very bottom of NZ)
– Get a Job and save some money to travel next year
– Travel through New Zealand in the Summer to all the places I’ve not been. Maybe hitchhike? Not sure yet…
– Work hard on a novel
– Win the University Student Poem competition
– Talk to an advisor/think about how I can move towards travel writing or freelance journalism.
– Volunteer in Dunedin, maybe with the elderly?
– Be open-minded towards everybody I meet. Judge not.
– Start a blog of my travelling, even if only before this Summer.
– Keep a journal CONSISTENTLY!

I want to be busy, immersed and stimulated. I want to be tired at the end of the day and excited at the start of the next. Good night 😉

The Sperm Whale of Happiness.

The Sperm Whale of Happiness.