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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 71: Humility and Balance in Life and Spirituality.

What is addiction and what is recreation? Where is the line between harmless fun and reckless behavior? Are some addictions worse than others, and if one doesn’t mind being addicted, then is it a problem? Life is about balance, as I’m sure we’ve all heard or perhaps realized for ourselves, and Buddha suggested we follow the Middle Way. But what is too much of a good thing? Is there such a thing? What is not enough evil? Wouldn’t we all be free to finally feel at peace if all evil were eradicated? Would we though? Is duality necessary? If it is, why should it be so? Unfortunately I don’t have all the answers, but I am willing to ask them, and I’m sure some good has to come of it. Some say we must have faith, and I agree, but faith in who or what? If evil is a part of life then, is this God’s perfect plan? Is there something wrong with it, or is it just that we are not at a level from which we can see what it all means, why it’s all necessary? Is life all a game, or is it extremely serious? At times we feel one way, at times we feel another. How can we find a balance between the two, and should we even attempt it? Some might blame God for having created such an evil world, but they don’t realize that their own use of their ability to express themselves is only possible because of their existence in the world. Evil is within us, just as it is outside of us, and we all have the potential to treat others in horrible ways in which we would never want to be treated ourselves. Should we despise our own existence and kill ourselves because we were born imperfect? Doesn’t it make more sense to try to understand why we were born this way? There must be some reason for it. Isn’t there any inspiration to be found in our lifelong struggle against our own evil, in persevering towards achieving a goal, towards setting our life straight, or a certain area of our life, and coming out successful in the end? What if there is a much deeper meaning to life than just seeking pleasure? Could this be the reason why some of the most damaging things in life, for human beings, are also the most pleasurable? Maybe the bitter aftertaste that follows certain forms of pleasure is there to help us, to guide us so that we may search for the truth, so that we don’t spend a lifetime chasing after alcohol, or drugs, or sex, or money. Some things are not evil in themselves. Sex is holy if it is treated with respect and used in its proper context, but it has been degraded to such an extent, that it is now one of the easiest ways to get lost in the petty search for pleasure. What turns good into evil, holy into blasphemous? A lack of balance does. Now, regarding the doubt as to whether this is God’s plan, whether he meant, if he did create the universe, to have evil be a part of life, I can’t say that I know, or that I’ve looked deeply into the subject. However, in the Bible, Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate from the forbidden fruit before the snake had even appeared to them. If the forbidden fruit was what made them be aware of good and evil, being the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, then how could they have committed evil deeds, such as disobeying God, before having eaten from the tree? Eating from the tree was an act of disobedience, but if they were created perfect, then why did they fall for the snake’s dirty trick? And where did the evil snake even come from anyway? If God made everything good, then how could an evil snake, a lying snake, come to speak to Adam and Eve, to tempt them into doing something wrong? Perhaps God meant for there to be temptation in this physical world, maybe so that we might learn to overcome it. Would there be any meaning in an action movie without a bad guy for the hero to take on? If there isn’t a bad guy then there’s some sort of conflict to resolve. I’m not saying that life is a Hollywood film, but life is sort of like a movie except that there is no guaranteed happy ending. Life depends on our choices, and even if some think that our fate is sealed, that history is already written and set in stone, it sure doesn’t feel that way. If we can’t feel like it is that way, then at least we should try to make our lives meaningful, even if it’s just for us. Take a second to sit back, relax, meditate, leave the stress behind just for a moment. Analyze every aspect of your life, and you are sure to find much meaning. Some you have always been aware of, some you have neglected for a long time and left to the side, and some might come in the form of a sudden, new realization, a surprising epiphany. Once you think about what is important in your life, about what is meaningful, you will see that, in order to progress in each and every one of these things, you will need to work at being much more balanced, and at having more self-control in general. This practice of cultivating self-control is actually the first step into a spiritual way of living. Self-control means that the real Self, the only Self, is controlling the illusory self, the physical and mental self, the physical and mental projections which are perceived by my mind in order to create an identity of who I am, along with the name given to me by my parents at birth. The more self-control we practice, the more we will live a balanced and healthy life, and the clearer we will think. We can’t have all the answers in life, but we shouldn’t become cynical because of the world’s apparently hostile nature. We should be humble, and we should seek to understand, for we are very small beings in a much, much greater universe, more meaningful than any of us could ever imagine.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 72.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 69: Persevere Through Life’s Hardships.

Times are always hard for many people around the globe. If things are going well for one person, someone else’s world appears to be crumbling down. We all can be sure that, if we are not struggling now, we will have to struggle at some point in the future. We will be afflicted by numerous struggles throughout our lives, but we mustn’t allow our anxiety to take control. We have to stand firm and face the reality we find ourselves in, even when suffering seems totally meaningless, existence nothing more than a cruel cosmic joke we find ourselves trapped in. We wish that the existential enemy we face would just vanish in a second like a cloud of smoke floating away with the breeze, when we need to accept it instead, to witness it without fear, with a calm and collected mind, and to dive deep into it in order to understand it. We have to learn not only to live with uncertainty, but to love it, to thrive in the face of adversity, prepared to stand firm before any possibilities, to have the attitude and the strength which are essential in order to overcome any obstacles in our way. As we sit and worry about the future or cry about the past, we waste precious time, we complain instead of finding a way to change, to make a change in the areas of our life which need changing. We sit around, miserable, consuming carcinogenic chemicals, smoking and drinking, doing hard drugs, disease and death slowly entering our system, then we blame the world, or God, for all sorts of illnesses. We’re slowly committing suicide to show those who don’t care to listen to our problems just how angry we are, we seek attention but we never ask for help, yet we can’t stand still without attempting to annihilate ourselves in some slow way. Life seems unfair to us, and we begin to drown in our own distorted mentality, our thoughts become the voice of anxiety, constantly haunting us, even in our sleep, in dreams. We have to stay busy since we’ve created a constant cloud of stress in our minds, so we can’t be at rest even when we lie in bed at the end of the day. We can’t sit in silence, no matter what we do, we can’t find peace since the noise is all inside our heads, it follows us around everywhere we go. We are only harming ourselves in the end, not the society we try to pin the blame on. No one is responsible for your life, no one can steer it in the right direction or make the changes you need to make for yourself. You whine that life is too hard, that the system is corrupt, that you were born into poverty or dealt a shit hand from the beginning. These are all excuses, your life is no harder than it’s meant to be. If you are facing some problem then it’s because you have the power within yourself to persevere and to push through that problem.  Anger and discontent with life have us unconsciously seeking to take revenge on society, yet succeeding at harming no one more than ourselves. Why worry about death if we feel we’re already in hell? But we fail to see the blessing, the option to learn a lesson from everything we experience. In the pessimist’s eyes, everything is void, empty with no meaning, but that’s exactly why you must give meaning to your own life, by taking responsibility for it. The ultimate meaning of life? Don’t waste the days away wondering about absolute truth, the truth is in every task you haven’t completed, or in every rhyme you haven’t laid down in the booth, if I’m speaking to myself, in every thought I haven’t gotten down on this page just yet. Do what needs to be done, and stop wishing for another task. If you want a better future, you should have lived a different past. But alas, nothing lasts. Is it too painful to bear? Or is this the greatest, most liberating truth that we could ever share? Everything is nothing, nothing is all. Goodness is all that exists, the image of God is the human blueprint. God dwells in the temple, all we need to do is enter the holy vessel we’ve been blessed with from birth. We shouldn’t ignore it, or neglect it, we should value it for what it’ worth. Look at the truth in front of your eyes! Love your wife, hug your mother, bless your brother, be there for one another, respect and learn from your father. Even if they’re not the best of parents, we all can learn a lesson from the family we enter the world into. A lot of us are born into first hand experience of why we shouldn’t do some of the horrible things we shouldn’t do. Why do you suffer and not I? Why do I suffer and not you now? It is irrelevant, since we are all bound to suffer during this human lifetime. We are all one, we are all laughing in the now, just as we are all crying in agony. Everything present, we are being born and dying. Nothing lasts forever, except the One Spirit which returns to the source. Call it what you like, but it’s attributes are love and wisdom. Seek affinity with this higher power and you cannot be led astray. Do what you know to be right, and cherish every single day, live it to the fullest. Because nothing lasts forever, seasons change with the weather. Life stages, each is a flip through our lifetime’s pages. We grow old and get sick and wonder what age is. But don’t be dragged down with your body, remain grounded, courage is contagious. Face the pain, face the tragedy with all the strength within you, and it just might become a comedy. Trust in the highest power within you, yet be humble and have faith, and the pain will pass. Pleasure passes, pain passes, but what is eternal, everlasting within each of us, will endure forever.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 67: We All Breathe the Same Air.

Another day of living, taking and giving. We take with every inhale, we give back with every exhale. There is no escaping this until we stop breathing and leave this earth. We all breathe the same air while we’re here so we are all brothers and sisters, and we must start to live by this truth rather than just talk or debate about it. Philosophizing is great, and it is in fact necessary, but if every truth of life is reduced to just an idea, which can either be accepted or discarded, then we have to wonder about the utility of our philosophy. The truth that we are all connected is evident to all of us, it is not a great hidden mystery. It is a truth that we can’t just talk about, we must feel it, we must understand it, we must put it into practice at all times. Whenever a new possibility arises, or any new situation, we are quick to look for whatever we can gain from it. Too often however, we completely overlook another even more important aspect of it, which is what we can give, what we can contribute to any given situation or project. Life itself, the world, society, these are the biggest projects we have going on on this planet, and if we were born here, if we find ourselves alive right now, it’s because we have something to contribute to them. Whether you believe in God or not, if you believe that life has any meaning at all, any deep significance, then there must be a meaning for you being born in the family you were born in, in the city and the country you were born in. Regardless of what your religion might teach, regardless of the metaphysical implications of your belief about life, we all find ourselves alive, in this life, in this crazy world, not really knowing why. We are all trying to live our lives as best as we can, all trying to make sense of the events which happen all around us every day, to integrate them into our lives, to learn what we can so that we may live life better every day. Life is about falling down and getting back up time and time again, it’s about failing, learning from our failures, and then moving forward with our new knowledge, trying to do better tomorrow. None of us have it all figured out, but a lot of us love pretending that we do. We love acting as if we have all the answers, since this makes us feel somewhat secure of our position in life. We look down at others who don’t have it all figured out like we firmly believe we do, and we stop associating with people since we don’t want to be dragged down to their level, or we don’t think they have anything to contribute to our lives. When we do this, we stop ask for help when we need it, and we don’t try to help others either, we never consider the possibility that anyone else might have any way to help us with anything. We isolate ourselves in a comfortable bubble, we focus all our time on trying to improve our own lives, and we ignore all the ways in which we could help all those around us. The problem with this is that we can never truly progress if we neglect the social aspect of our nature. We are all social creatures, we were all born with the capacity to interact because we are meant to interact, we are meant to build together, we are meant to help each other up when we fall. Things work much better this way. It is something that has been proven time and time again, something that we all know, yet we continue trying to live our lives on our own terms, never listening to any advice, never stepping out of our comfort zone to help anyone in need. When enough people start living like this, others begin to sense it. People feel vulnerable, like they can’t trust their neighbors, they can’t trust the teachers, the cops, the politicians, the police. But who are these politicians and police? Who are the criminals and the terrorists? They are people like us, breathing, living people. So, as we start to feel suspicious about our government and also about the criminals, about the terrorists as well as the police, then we are really starting not to trust humanity as a whole. We all try to get ahead, and in our desperation to get ahead, we are quick to step on others to get what we want. We worry only for ourselves, and it is easy for us to ignore the pain we have caused others as long as we can enjoy the benefits we got from it ourselves. We never take into consideration that, with every dishonest act, with everything we do to harm others and benefit ourselves, we help create an atmosphere of hostility, of distrust, an environment in which no one can rely on anyone else. Since more and more people start feeling this way, they also start acting out of desperation and fear, they start to “understand” that the world is a wicked place, that people only look out for themselves, no matter where we go, and that if we want to survive, we will have to do the same. So many of us have adopted this attitude, and because of that it’s almost impossible to fully trust anyone these days. This is really a sad state of affairs, since our whole society runs on trust, and the more we feel that we are isolated from everyone else, the more we feel that we don’t need anyone else to live life, that we don’t need to connect with anyone else, the more we will contribute to the downfall of civilization by helping to sever the connections between human beings. Before you do anything, before you start any new project, take a moment to remember that life is not only about taking, but also about giving. Think of what you can do to make a difference in someone’s life, even if it’s a small, positive difference. We all have to start somewhere, and maybe we can reverse some of the damage that has already been done.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 68.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 66: Life Is A Learning Process.

Life is a constant learning process. The ups and downs, trials and tribulations, the highs and lows that make up our lives, they can all be looked at and appreciated, if we can achieve such a state of mind, as the necessary pieces of the puzzle which makes us who we are. Life is about putting all the pieces together, about connecting all the dots in the right order, in order to see the bigger picture eventually. Life is really about trial and error, although we can learn beforehand about the things we consciously choose to become involved in. Some things just happen though, or at least we have no clue why they’re happening. Sometimes we have no way to prepare for such a situation, and in these cases learning happens on the spot. We have no choice but to learn. In reality, we learn from everything we experience, consciously and subconsciously, we are always learning, always changing into something new. We are never the same person, every passing second changes us in a profound way, even if we don’t experience the change in progress. Small changes that take a second give way to big changes that happen throughout a lifetime. Pain comes and passes, we curse and we cry, joy comes and we rejoice, but we cry when it leaves. We are relieved when the pain passes, and we appreciate life a little more, but for how long? Is it only a temporary feeling? Too often this is the case. We often overlook all the blessings in our lives by being too caught up in complaining. By focusing on the negative aspect of everything, we fail to be thankful for, or to even acknowledge, all the wonderful things in our lives, and we also fail to see how any positive result could come from the things that seem like total tragedies to us. The biggest problems in our lives are the ones that we could learn the most from, but too many of us are too afraid to do this, and we are also too afraid to even acknowledge our own cowardice. If we could dive deep into our despair, if we could stare sorrow in the face and smile at it, if we could master our emotions and all the thoughts that run daily through our minds, we could probably do a lot more learning, and a lot less complaining than we currently do. We could dig for gold in our problems if only we changed our attitude. We could trace the cause of every problem we face, and we would see that it starts with us, and that a change must therefore start with us as well, with nobody else. If we refuse to learn, if we run from distraction to distraction, hoping to avoid looking at the truth of our lives, we still will not be able to avoid learning completely. We can choose not to learn now, by discernment, but we will surely learn our lesson later, only we will have to learn it the hard way, probably not under very pleasurable circumstances. Life has a way of catching up to us, and there’s no escape from fate. We have free will to create our lives, but if we act out of ignorance, if we don’t know what knowledge even means, then are we really making conscious decisions, are we really free men and women? We talk way too much, and we all think we have the answer, we are all self-righteous in some way, and I’m not excluding myself. We all have to fight a constant battle, one that’s even more important, more intense, than any battle against external forces. We are all facing an inner battle against demonic forces, evils such as lust, greed, hate, jealousy, ambition beyond any reason. These are all things that are bound to lead to catastrophe if they are not placed under the power of the Spirit, or at least under the power of reason or common sense, which might not be enough. If we are not aware of this, then how can we even think of starting to learn about how to be free? How can we try to learn to live life if we think it is meaningless, if we think that nothing really matters and that life is just a constant quest for the most pleasurable feeling, for the highest high or the craziest thrill? We must do away with these ignorant notions. Life is meaningful beyond human comprehension, and we can learn something from everything. We can learn from good and from evil, we can learn from the kind and we can learn from the wicked, we can learn what is right and what is not right, we can learn from our parents, we can learn from priests or from politicians, we can learn from books or from crooks. Who we learn from often plays a big role in who we become in life, but the wisest teacher of them all is life itself. No matter who we choose to learn from in life, be it professionally or just in general, about life, no one can teach us like life can. Life is the master of life, it knows all there is to know about it, because it is life itself. The more we understand the deep significance of life, the more we try to connect with it, to really live and to feel it, to feel fully alive, the easier it becomes to understand life, to understand how to incorporate everything, the good and the bad, into our lives, how to keep calm and continue to move forward, how to trust in God, in life, and how to leave worry behind. We were not meant to live in fear or worry, so we must focus on living our lives as best as possible and on learning the most we can from every day we are blessed to live through. The first step is to humble ourselves and to accept that we don’t know much at all, that we are the humble students of life from now on.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 67.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 64: Being Free of External Opinions.

What does it take, to be free of others opinions, to truly be oneself, yet to remain grounded in reason? What would it feel like, to be able to do everything with complete certainty, with zero insecurity, knowing that we’re not making a grave mistake? What if we knew the way, if we knew each and every step we needed to take? I have a feeling that life would seem just a bit controlled, kind of fake. Should we embrace insecurity, doubt, fear? These things are what keep us alert, but we cant’ give in to either one of them. Nothing can harm us when we are truly grounded, even further beyond than reason, but if we are not, then these things are bound to paralyze us. The way others wish we would live our lives, what society expects of us, what parents or relatives, brothers or significant others want us to do, who they would like us to be. Great expectations which at times we have no desire to even attempt to live up to. Yet the nagging feeling persists, the anxiety, the constant indecision that makes something inside our bellies twist, when we face a big decision. But what if we could embrace it, then we might just be able to use it to our advantage. If we can master fear, if we can truly learn to trust the process of life, then we might just find that we have enough peace of mind, enough motivation, enough concentration, in order to think things through, in order to get things done, in order to see things more clearly. As long as we are drowning in our fears, of events of the past that still manage to haunt us, of future possibilities for tragedy, for chaos. We fear change, we fear death, we fear people and the things they say and do, what they think of us, what they might do to us. What if we were free of all preconceived notions about people and what they might be thinking, what their ulterior motives might be, and about what the world is and how it should be? Could we live healthier lives, would there be less people who can’t cope with the stress of life in modern society? Could there be less mental as well as physical illness? We can’t ever find peace in life and we often wonder why, but most of the time what we’re missing is just honesty, sincerity, the courage to be totally honest with ourselves. We can’t do this because we are terrified of change, especially the positive kind. We are afraid to look within and to face our demons, so we pass the time, and we never bother to even try to understand what life is all about, to wonder about who or what we are as a species, what our collective purpose might be for existing, or what your own individual purpose or mission might be. We want things to be easy, but life isn’t easy. We can’t avoid the hardships of life, we can only prepare for them. This doesn’t mean that life is evil, that the world is a hostile place, but it does mean that we have to remain as aware as possible at all times, that we have to stay alert. We have to keep a constant watch for the evil within ourselves, so that we may practice the necessary self-restraint in order to live a balanced life, in order to allow others to do the same, and to speak nothing but life to whoever we encounter. If we fear the opinions of others, if we fear the possibilities of being ridiculed, of being persecuted, then we cannot speak our minds. If we are not aware of what the truth is, if we do not have a code to live by, if we don’t have the smallest idea of who or what we are or what we stand for, what we agree with or not, what we allow into our lives, then life will carry us this way and that way, into trouble here, into problems there, and we will complain and wonder why it all seems to happen to us. We never stood up for anything in our lives, we never bothered to try, to find a meaning to life, or to create one. We gave up, we gave in to temptation, to laziness, to discouragement, we never bothered to make things make sense, or to find the inherent sense in the events of our lives. Another mistake some people make however, is that they think that are free of others opinions, and they think they are being themselves, but in reality the only reason why they feel free to be themselves is because their identity revolves around being funny or cracking jokes, or doing things that make them popular in the eyes of others, whether those things are correct or not. Such a person often disregards morality and acts in evil ways in order to impress others, or to fit in, or to prove to others how crazy or cool they are. In time, these people start to identify with the image they are attempting to portray, and they start to believe that they truly are that image. If they ever tried to look within themselves and tried to live by the principles they would find in their hearts then they would find it a lot more difficult to be free in the world. The world seldom wants the truth, it often wants only what is comfortable. People want to hear what they want to hear, they want to be distracted, they want to be entertained. Who can be bothered with the truth in this day and age of transitory pleasures? What purpose can the truth serve when all we want is to be comfortable in the lies we’ve fabricated? It’s a sad state to be in, and we all must be honest with ourselves about whether this is the way we are living or not, and if so, then we must each find a way to rise above this mentality.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 65.

~ Rebel Spirit 

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 52: Spontaneous Writing, A New Life.

So many things on my mind that I want to write down, but when I sit down to write it’s like I don’t know what or how. It reminds me of how I started my very first post of this daily thousand-word series. Although some days I feel more clarity than others, most times I just try to wing it. I used to feel bad about it, now not so much. Creativity doesn’t always have to involve too much planning, sometimes none is necessary, though experience and practice are probably always necessary no matter what. Freestyle rapping is an example of creativity on the spot, although it’s unfortunate that sometimes it’s filled with nonsense, since artists don’t have time to think of intelligent lyrics, they’re simply trying to rhyme. So, as I write I try to keep my ignorance to the lowest level possible, I try to speak the truth but not to be offensive, yet to speak the truth nonetheless. It’s simply necessary, and it’s what inspires me to write in the first place. I used to be very extroverted, having a lot of friends and partying often, but now I don’t go out or drink, I mostly stay home with my wife, and I don’t live nearly as crazy as I used to. Let’s say I do a lot more thinking these days, a lot less spending, and a lot less dumb shit. My childhood and early teen years were filled with trouble, mostly caused by my own stupidity and wrong attitude towards life. I can’t say I’m a completely new man, but so far I’ve changed a lot over the past few years, mostly for the better. I’ve also quit smoking cigarettes, I just can’t stand the thought of screwing up my health so badly. Some would say it’s stupid to quit smoking one thing and continue with another, but I do still blaze, probably about as often or even more than I did before, since now I live on my own, with my wife, not with my parents, and I can just keep my bong. It’s definitely convenient, the only downside is I miss all the going out to smoke joints in the fresh air. So, with a few changes to my overall health and some for my mental health, I go on, day by day, doing the work of self-improvement, yet in the process, every second, of constantly remembering that, although the self is being strengthened, being improved, there is a dimension beyond the self which it is also essential to strengthen, which is the dimension of the Self, of the Spirit. We must live life to the fullest, yet we mustn’t become attached to anything in it, we shouldn’t embrace the things of this world as the greatest treasures, otherwise when we lose them, and we will, we will not know who or what we are. Everything which we once were has been taken from us, now where are we to be found. Where or what is the self? When I write spontaneously, these thoughts on spirituality are often what come to my mind, what surface up from my subconscious, so I guess it’s a good sign about where my mind is at, since it’s what I mostly contemplate these days. I know it’s not good to overthink, and that the final goal is to completely transcend all thought as well as emotion or feeling, but with so much interesting knowledge, with so many different things to learn, to analyze, how can I not read, how can I not learn, how can I help myself from at least attempting to familiarize myself as well as I can with the greatest wisdom we can attain in this life, in this world? How can I shy away from following the mysteries, from trying to find meaning in every second, in every day. Time and life is all we all have, and it strikes me as off how little we like to think or talk together about what life means, what the world is for and why we exist here. I think we avoid the subject since we don’t like to feel small, like we don’t know something as simple as the meaning of our own existence. We all know we don’t know, so we avoid admitting the fact to each other, and instead we all just follow some religion or philosophical school, we learn it as best as possible, and we pretend that we know. We tell people that we know what life means, that we know who or what God is and exactly what he wants for us. We begin to believe our delusion, since we can never know the truth in its entirety. Don’t assume I’m being pessimistic, it’s just a fact. It’s a fact because the truth is beyond our human understanding. Our brain is not wired to comprehend why it exists, there are dimensions beyond time and space that defy everything we know, every shred of understanding or knowledge or wisdom we could even fathom to use in order to try to understand such experiences, if we could have access to them. The closest I can think of this is the psychedelic experience, and most who have used psychedelics would agree that the experiences they’ve had cannot be described by words. These are simple substances, yet still mysteries, but what about the mysteries of angels, of demons, of God and the Devil? What about life on other planets, about life possibly being nothing but a simulation? What about what happens when we die? These are all mysteries, but there are even greater mysteries than these, ones we might even be able to solve, or maybe not fully, but we might learn a thing or two, or the most important thing we could ever learn, in the process of attempting to solve them. I’m talking about the mysteries of who we are and what our individual purposes are, what my individual purpose is as well as yours. These things are worth finding out, and if you don’t think we have any purpose, if you think your existence is random and meaningless, then why don’t you attempt to find out, to sincerely try the best you can to figure out if you’re right or wrong, if you do have any meaning or not. Search wherever you can, in books and most importantly from first-hand experience. Live life with discernment, and you will see so much meaning before your eyes which you have previously chosen to ignore, it will seem like a new life you cannot believe,

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 53.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 50: 50 Days Writing! Goals Review.

Half a hundred days of writing and posting a thousand words. I’ve failed at some other goals during this time, and I’ve restarted them right back for another attempt, but I’m especially happy that I’ve been able to stay on track with this particular goal. I was just letting my wife know about it. It’s great to have people all over the world have access to what you write, and to actually have people read it, even if it’s just a few people sometimes. It’s one of the truly wonderful about the internet age which we live in. It’s a great privilege which requires great responsibility on a writer’s part, so I try to keep my mind as clear as possible when I write these things, free of all negativity and frustration. I don’t drink anymore, which is great, since it would have been such a hindrance to staying on track with my daily writing goal, both because I’d obviously going out more, and because I’d feel totally destroyed the day after getting wasted. It didn’t feel so bad when I was younger, and I know for sure I drank a lot more back then, so I knew my body was now beginning to tell me that it was time to take it easy. I’m super glad about this goal as well, I haven’t drank a drop of alcohol in almost a hundred days now, so I gotta a hundred and a few more to go on my current challenge of two hundred days. Sometimes I feel I might just lay off the booze for good, even after I finish my two hundred day goal. I don’t crave it anymore and I feel totally fine without it, and it feels like I got my shit together, like I got things a bit more under control. Life isn’t always about being in control of everything, but completely losing control of oneself can be dangerous, and it’s certainly something that alcohol intoxication can lead to, and does lead to a lot of the time. Life feels good without it, but then I think that, if I can manage to keep it under control and moderation, then a beer or two here and there won’t do much harm, and will make me enjoy any nice day or night out. The problem is that I can’t ever stop at two, so I think I just might try to lay off the booze completely for as long as possible. Either way, I’ve been doing some experiments with psychedelics, in the past mostly shrooms, but now I have a connect for some good acid, and since I don’t party anymore, I’ve been just tripping alone at home (since Maria usually falls asleep), and concentrating on peace, meditating, reflecting having deeply profound experiences of psychological and spiritual growth. New thoughts come to me, and things which I know deep inside, which I’ve even forgotten from so much neglect, from being ignored for so long, from not wanting to deal with them, start to make themselves known to me, their significance becomes inescapable and I know without a doubt that, what matters most in life, is to love others, to love and care for one’s family and friends, to make connections, to always keep a good vibe following you wherever you go, a contagious feeling that will inspire others to live in the same way. I’ve been tripping on two or three tabs at a time, a few months at a time, two or three maybe, and reflecting on my progress with my goals as well. So what do I need alcohol for, that dulling sensation of the mind, that lustful appetite and aggressive behavior? Sometimes I feel frustrated with my goals, but I cannot abandon my sadhana. I have also been working on keeping lust off my mind, inspired by various books, mostly by Hindu Swamis, on the power of Brahmacharya. The concept of Brahmacharya provides, in my opinion, a better explanation of what I had read before in Mantak Chia’s book, regarding the same concept but from the Taoist perspective. Abstaining from all lustful thoughts and looks, ideas, only making love with my wife every few days, meditating and reading daily, the Bible and the Sutras, abstaining from alcohol, writing every day to keep my creative side alive. I wish I was making music, but for some reason, I find I don’t have much inspiration for that at this moment in life, but it comes and it goes I believe. Some other things I feel I need to do are to start focusing more on my health. I was already exercising every day as a goal, but I stopped about a month and a half back since I got sick with a random and mysterious fever. It would hit me every single day, for about a week and a half or two weeks. I had to gather my strength after those two weeks, so I’ve been eating better, thinking that not eating enough might have something to do with me being weak and therefore susceptible to such fevers. I still haven’t started exercising, but I need to, and I will do so any day now, I’ll start again with my weights and pushups, yoga and jogging around the baseball field which is a block away. Exercise makes you feel energetic, alive, and it keeps us healthy. We all need to exercise a healthy habit of daily exercise! There’s no denying its benefits. And the hardest goal of all, I made a promise to Maria that I would start this month, that I would only smoke weed fifteen days of the month. I didn’t promise this to her because of any pressure on her part, but instead because I knew I’d have to honor my promise to her no matter what, so this would be the perfect way for me to keep feeling accountable for completing this new goal. I’m not taking on this weed goal because I think it’s harmful, but because I feel I’m too attached to staying faded. Nothing should become an attachment in our lives, and if we see that something has, then we need to deal with it, then we can partake in it again in a healthy way. Wish me luck so I can smoke only half the month this month of July (usually I blaze every day)!

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 51.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 49: Don’t Become Discouraged.

It’s easy to become discouraged, and to fall into a deeply depressive state, if we continually dwell upon all the death and destruction that takes place on daily basis, all around us at all times. There are many, many horrible deeds being consciously committed by many people, and there are also many small acts of ignorance which we all commit just as frequently, which cause a big impact on ourselves and on our planet in the long run, such as our extreme use of plastic, as well as our contribution to consumer culture. There is simply no escaping it, is how we often feel. We feel like there’s no way to go against the system, and that, if there’s no way of easing the people’s pain, or at least our own, then does life really have a point, does it hold any meaning? Is there any value in enjoying life while millions of others, human and non-human alike, suffer at the same time? Can we ever be free of fear in the face of a possible disease or an early and unexpected death? Must we be always alert, paranoid about whether death is just around the corner, constantly worried sick about the well-being of those we love, imagining the worst of possibilities whenever they come home a bit late or something like that? I never felt like this in Canada, but I often feel like this now, here in Honduras, when Maria goes to work in the mornings, since I join her there later in the day. I wonder if she’s okay all the way, and so I make sure I have her call me every day when she gets to work. We got another cell phone in order to make this happen, before we just had the one for both. But is this healthy? Is it good to be afraid of the world and of its unexpected dangers? Of car crashes or robberies and killings? Nowadays, thousands of people go watch a movie or attend a concert and they end up getting blasted on and killed by some psychopathic maniac. But is this an excuse to live in fear? Crime is very high here in Honduras, but I still don’t think it’s an excuse. One must have faith, in God is what I believe, but if you’re unsure of God as a concept at least you can have faith in the inherent goodness of the world, if you think of it reasonably. There is duality, yes, but the Spirit which inhabits our bodies is made up of all the attributes of the greatest good, and it cannot be shaken by duality. We can only believe ourselves defeated by life’s tragedies, if we are drowning in ignorance, leading us to forget our truly divine nature which is above such petty pleasures and pains. We shouldn’t focus on worry, on anxiety, on panic or frustration. We should focus on cultivating an unbreakable inner calm, a peace which is true and which pervades our entire life. We need to make this our priority, and we must come to love life, along with all its inescapable and painful situations, to be at peace with the process of life, and with everything it includes, to be grateful to be here, to be now, in this moment, to be alive. Once we truly feel this way, we will understand that, even with all the pain, even with all the evil we human beings are capable of, even with all the terrible crimes we’ve committed in the past, there is something within all of us which is beyond evil, which can break its chains, which can free us from bondage to our lower nature, to our sensual desires, to our lust and our greed and selfish satisfaction. We are trapped to these things, the great majority of us, yet we don’t try to break free. We are comfortable in our prison cells, and most of us have even decorated over the bars, we have become used to our posters, the decorations we’ve placed over the iron bars, and we’ve come to forget them. We don’t know we are locked up in physical existence, we don’t know that there’s more to us outside of this. We laugh at those who suggest this, we doubt the human spirit, we are quick to doubt ourselves, to harshly judge ourselves and others. Although we might not judge ourselves in front of others in order to pretend as if we have it all together, to keep our image, our identity, the real Self can never be lied to, and since within ourselves we know that we are wrong in whatever aspect of our lives, we judge ourselves and we feel guilty and ashamed. We become insecure, we develop and extreme mistrust for others, we become anti-social. We begin to project our fear onto everything, and all of a sudden life has become a great deception, something barely worth living, something we must simply endure, since we cannot take our own lives. We question existence, and just maybe it might be all completely random, totally pointless and stupid. We fail to understand that things are much deeper than what we perceive, and that we all suffer in this life, mostly because we wish things were different, we argue with life, we don’t look at things properly, we make the wrong decisions, we act impulsively, we do things for our own satisfaction, we give in to destructive vices and sacrifice our long-term health, sanity, and dignity. We all want to do everything we feel like, without knowing the impact it will have on ourselves and those around us, not to mention everyone else living life, since we are all one. Then we complain about the consequences, we act as if actions had no reactions, as if there were no principle of Cause and Effect. But this is something which is known since ancient times, and today, during the internet era, when we have access to so much information from so many different sources, ancient as well as contemporary, the fact that most of us don’t research this kind of information and take the time to learn from it is really great proof of our profound state of ignorance, which is the same exact cause as that of every single problem or disease which I mentioned during this post, and which most of us can see around us, which cause so much suffering for so many. What we need to do is to remain conscious of our true nature, and to focus on becoming free from the chains of ignorance.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 50.

~ Rebel Spirit

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1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 42: First DMT Trip, No Breakthrough.

I tried DMT today for the firs time. I had given a friend some cash the other day in order for him to get me four acid tabs. Today he came to my house, he bought some bud, we took some bong hits and chilled a bit as usual. Before that though, we quickly took a ride in his car of over to his other friend’s house, it was really close to mine. I went because it turned out that this dude had some DMT, a substance I’d always wanted to try but had never gotten a hold of, even back in Canada. Buddy gave me my four tabs and told me his friend had wanted to trade some DMT for a tab. I asked my friend some questions about how it looked and some other things, and I assumed it was the real deal since he told me it was a yellow powdery kind of crystal, a description which reminded me of the photo I’d seen on the erowid website before. I checked it out once again on my phone and decided to go for a ride. Initially I didn’t plan on taking the DMT at the guy’s house, the guy who had it. Instead, I planned on taking it home and planning a nice trip. Maybe if I had done it this way I would have had a breakthrough experience, and sadly I didn’t. Although the trip was way too short, which was expected, it did get a bit intense for a minute or two, sort of like the peak of an acid trip but a bit more animated even. When we first arrived at that guy’s house I was surprised to see that it wasn’t a party, it was just the dude there with a pipe, taking a few tokes, some open beer cans on the table. I don’t know much about DMT use, although I have used other psychedelics quite a lot. I trusted that he was telling the truth when he told me that the amount of DMT which he gave me was about the same amount’s worth as the blotter tab I gave him for it. My friend wanted to do it, and I offered him a hit for himself, since that way I could at least see how he tripped and know if it was good stuff or not. The other guy said it was better to put it in a joint with some bud, and although I remembered I had actually read online that the most effective method was a pipe, we ended up going ahead with the joint. We put the DMT around the center of it so the flame wouldn’t burn the crystals upon sparking the joint, I lit it and started taking fat hits, expecting to see spirits and kaleidoscopic patterns flooding my entire vision, expecting mystical unity with the universe, ego death, I inhaled as strong as I could and held the smoke as well. I passed to my friend who started taking fat tokes also. Instantly as soon as I lit it I started feeling an energy creeping up from my legs, from me extremities, towards my center, things started to have patterns flowing through them, colors, lines and shades, reflections all looked way more defined, the dude who traded it with me for the acid didn’t hit the joint at all, he was just telling us to stop talking and to let the experience flow. He didn’t need to tell me, I had my eyes closed, smile on my face, letting the trip take over at that point. My friend kept telling us how it was hitting him, how nice it was, a lot of things. A few minutes later everything was back to normal. The feeling was overwhelming in the beginning, and we felt that we were getting way too high, so we put out the joint. I think this might have been our main mistake, apart from smoking it in a joint in the first place. If we would have blazed that jay all the way to the dome, together, in one sitting, without putting it out, we probably could have had a breakthrough. I think I wasn’t ready for it though. Initially I had planned to just take it home, then I ended up deciding to let go into it, to do it and to just be in the moment, in the experience. I didn’t feel like waiting to try DMT for the first time, so we went ahead and did it. The second time we lit the joint, and finished it now, the DMT hit almost the same as when we smoked the first half, perhaps just a bit more lightly, since we knew what to expect at that point. Maybe I’ll get some more in the future, although I’m going to investigate a bit more first, to find out about what really contributes to whether one has a breakthrough experience or not. It seems that it would only be worth it if the experience could be that intense, seeing as acid or mushrooms last much longer. A lot of substances, mostly the psychedelic ones, can be used in a safe setting, without much risk of danger to one’s health or to those surrounding us. I’ve been using psychedelics, every few months usually, for many years, and I know there’s lots that can be learned from the trips they take us on, if we are in the right mood, at the right time in our lives, and if we can let go and stop trying to control the experience, in much the same way as we must stop our obsession with always trying to control the whole of life. Life is unexpected, just like a psychedelic trip, and the way in which we perceive it depends quite a great deal on our minds, in much the same way as a psychedelic trip as well. Do your research, learn what is needed before you even plan on indulging in any substance. Knowledge is power, education is key to correct use of these tools.

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 43.

~ Rebel Spirit 

1,000 WORDS (2nd attempt): DAY 20: Do What Needs to be Done NOW!

As a new month begins, as we gather our energies to begin a new, maybe there’s goals we wish to achieve, changes we’ve been looking to make in our lives. We’re determined that this will be the month of our success, this will be the time to start finally feeling free of compulsion, to start living the way we were meant to, the way we know we are meant to live. Although this excitement is often the result of great motivation, and often motivates us even more, we shouldn’t become too attached to the idea of a new month of change. A month consists normally of thirty days, and each one of those days is made up of 24 hours, each hour 60 minutes, each minute made up of seconds, small lapses of time which fade away as we start to speak about them. What is a second? It is the closest we ever get to the now, and every second we are alive we can make a difference, both in our lives and in the world as a whole. Whenever we make a positive change in our lives we are positively affecting the planet we all share, even if indirectly we are making things better for everyone else. Along with this excitement to change often comes a disappointment in ourselves for not having changed sooner. We reach a point of desperation for not having been able to achieve our daily goals, for not being able yet to cut out that toxic and destructive habit from our lives. All negatives have a positive side, being that they provide us with experiences we can learn from. It is good that past failures motivate us for future success. But it’s even better when past failures motivate us for present success. As we begin to plan a whole month of being aware, of being more conscious, we might become sure that this time we will not fail. We might feel a rush of euphoria as we are now embarking on this journey from which there is no backing down. The problem is that, in a few days, once the initial excitement passes, we might feel disappointed in ourselves for not keeping the momentum going, we might feel that we are losing that motivation. The problem is that we were focusing on the feeling of success since the beginning, we were focusing on how good it would feel to succeed, to take on a whole month of refusing temptation, of remaining calm and collected in every situation, of breaking old habits and finally being able to feel proud of ourselves. Although it serves to motivate us initially, this focusing on the outcome and on the positive feeling it will fill us with does not provide lasting motivation, because it still focuses on future satisfaction. What is needed is not a future goal in order to be able to feel accomplished at the end of a certain period. What we need to do is to remain completely focused at every moment. We need to plan a daily review of our goals and habits, we need to keep track at every moment, we need to remain grounded in the fact that this is a new person, this person here, now, living life differently. I won’t be a new person once I complete a certain goal for a specific amount of days. No, I’m already a new person, and if I intend to live life according to my values, if I know what those values are, then at any moment I can review these ideals, and I can get straight to work. Once you know that something is good for your life, that it will help to build your life up into something richer, there is no need to look for outside validation, or even to look for validation from ourselves. Our own mind might trick us a few days later, throwing temptation in our face, hoping that we break our goals, that we indulge in that harmful habit, that we fail and feel miserable again. We need to remember that we have already made the decision to go through with this, and that decision is true of right now, we absolutely must put it into practice Now. You see, there is nothing other than the now. Focus on the now, learn the teachings of Karma Yoga in order to understand this concept in a deeper way if you must. Don’t feel entitled to feeling good, don’t feel entitled to the fruits of your labor. Don’t worry about what others think, don’t worry if it doesn’t seem like the goal is bringing you to where you wanted. Give it some time, stick to the plan, to the decision which you had in that one moment of clarity, and apply it to the now. Let go of any doubt that arises from past conditioning, let go of paralyzing fear of the future. There is no past, there is no future. There is only now, this moment, this consciousness which allows us to experience the moment, and the all-pervading Spirit which provides us with our ability to do the right thing here and now. So, if you’re trying to break a habit that has you in its grip, don’t start thinking about all the times you’ve failed, don’t start by thinking about how horrible it will feel to be deprived of such pleasure for a whole week, or a whole month, or a year. Simply know in this moment that you are free, that you don’t need anything external, whatever it may be, and be at peace in this moment. Close your eyes and sit and do nothing if necessary, but just be in the moment until temptation passes. If you are trying to pick up a new habit, don’t think about all the extra work you need to put in now. Don’t stress about people liking what you write, about people buying your music, about people criticizing your art, about people looking at you weird for refusing to complain, or for changing your life, for giving up reckless partying and drug use for spirituality, for connecting with the Higher Self within us all, or for following the passion you know you were born to pursue. Pay no mind to these things, know there is an amazing force which is on your side at all times. You cannot fail now, you can only succeed at doing what needs to be done, or at not doing what doesn’t need to be done. Stop complicating yourself and your life, stop looking for gratification in time, stop looking for the feeling of being a better person, a more responsible or successful person, and accept yourself as you are now, be at peace with yourself and with God, and get down to business. You know what needs to be done, so do it NOW! You will never get another chance to do what you need to do now. 

To be continued tomorrow, on Day 21.

~ Rebel Spirit