Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Desiderata by Max Ehrman

This is one of the most satisfying readings I have ever taken in.  It was written by Max Ehrman.  Enjoy.

The Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time. Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism. Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness. Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy.

Max Ehrman

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Shy Guy

So I enjoy a great conversation, but I have difficulty having truly great ones with strangers or new interests.  Is it just me, or is it they? 

I have pondered that question for a number of weeks now and have settled upon the hypothesis that I might be shy.

Unpacking that, I reasoned that I lacked confidence when I sizing up myself to my potential conversation partner, perhaps also estimating that I am not a very well prepared or well read person, having nothing interesting to talk about.

While my perceived shortcomings may upon introspection lead to a rally from mediocrity and complacence, I discovered in my readings online the notion that shyness is about the self.  Essentially in a conversation, it is a misdirection of the focus of a potentially great conversation onto my self, not only so much as becoming the topic of conversation, but more of being an equal partner in the conversation.  The remedy was to focus on the partner, really listening, and enjoying them for their fascinating contribution.  Not caring whether I am Equal, or even whether I have anything to contribute, as long as I create a comfortable space for my partner and myself to see where our words may lead.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

A Little "Light" Reading

Got my copy in the mail of the book "Aristotle - On Rhetoric...", 2nd Edition, translated by George A. Kennedy.  I started with the indexes and tables of content.  I flipped through the beginning pages and down to the end.  It looks dense but it is so well translated and marked up that I might actually learn something about logic and reason, beliefs, and persuasion.

Monday, February 10, 2014

On My Humanity

Take it to life.  Stake a claim.  Establish dominion. Be a dominant but gentle and loving soul.  Have a heart, please. Always have the best of intentions, doing either the right or wrong thing as the case may be, but always for the right reasons.  Keep pushing until a breakthrough occurs where either a goal is reached or all reasonable means have been fully exhausted and it has become obvious this goal needs to be broken into smaller objectives.  Let the little person inside come out to play in all endeavors. This, to me is the essence of being a true master of self and all grown up in my humanity. 

Saturday, February 8, 2014

I'm committed to being better.  Spend time working on being better.  Dress better.  Eat better.  Perpetual motion.

Friday, February 7, 2014

What's done is done, but don't give up, things can always be spun.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

So what did I learn today?  Aristotle's Rhetoric has been translated a few times and I just bought the latest copy.  I can't wait to peel back the layers of persuasion, my ethos against your logos until we spiral downwards into pathos.
To study and experience a broad variety of all disciplines, and with humility to possess this sapience whilst keeping masked the mechanics of your polymathy -- this is worth lusting for.  This is Sprezzatura.  Look it up...

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

You're never too old to watch animated comedy.  Today I got a reminder of the power of words from a character on an old animated show which you may search for and be as unburdened and enlightened as I was.  The quote: My vision would turn your world upside down, tear asunder your illusions and send the sanctuary of your own ignorance crashing down around you. -- This said by a child to a grown man!

Have a laugh every day and you will live long.  Learn cool lyrics and be able to sing a song.  Learn the lines from your favorite scenes and impress your own self with just how poetic life is.