Essays, Poetry, Observations, Etc.

Archive for the ‘reflections’ Category

Truth in perspective

In philosophy, reflections, Uncategorized on February 11, 2014 at 7:50 pm

What is truth? This is one of the oldest questions in existence. We tend to take it for granted. We think we know what truth is. Except what we often think of as truth is merely opinion.

My truth may be different from your truth. And yours different from someone else’s. Every single person on the planet has a variation of what is the truth, even babies. And truth can be hurtful, even destructive when treated dogmatically.

One person’s facts are just opinions and speculation to another. To someone locked in on the truth, that statement will often cause tempers to flair with much huffing and puffing about what truth is… to them and often with complete disregard to what you might believe. It is one of the many reasons we are so polarized politically in this country. Both sides are wedded to their own “truths,” unwilling to even consider the other’s viewpoint.

Think of it this way, my favorite is the “fact” that the sun rises every morning. It’s what we grew up with. Everyone knows it to be true. Except it isn’t, except from our perspective. The earth rotates to face the sun every morning. The sun stays put, the earth moves.

Perspective, that what ends up defining our “truths.” It ends up defining what we perceive to be good or bad.

So, what is truth? That may be unanswerable. Maybe a better question should be, what is your perspective?

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You know

In inevitabiliy, life, poem, reflections on October 2, 2013 at 12:10 am

You know, I am going to die.
Maybe not soon, but I am going to die.
Not afraid of it, I would just like to avoid it as long as possible.
Would like it to not be too messy or painful.
I avoid certain risks in my life, like jumping out of perfectly good airplanes.
I don’t smoke, I drink seldomly and/or in moderation.

And for every risk I avoid, for every possible death I avoid,
there is another waiting for me,
because I can’t cheat death.

Meanwhile, I am not going to live in a fallout shelter
while only eating foods that,
although tasteless, will “maybe” extend my life.

A boring, tasteless life may suit someone cringing at the thought of their eventual demise,
but not I.

I live my life with relative pleasure,
moderating because I have no desire to rush things,
yet, indulging when I want, because life is too short not to.

And so, to each their own.

Enjoy!

Moments

In life, love, poem, poetry, reflections, time on September 19, 2013 at 11:39 pm

Rain falls gently
The night is damp
as the day’s heat evaporates.
Quiet reigns.

Moments of love
moments in time
moments of crystalline awareness
slip into the soul.

Aches and regrets
longings and hopes
come together
in the crossroads of the heart.

And gently
oh, so gently
life plays itself out
straining for purpose, for love.

And all the while
the insistent cries all around
call softly like cats in the night
keening for attention.

The call of hope
the yearning for love
the prayer for time,
for a life fulfilled.

Bad Poetry Corner

In life, philosophy, poem, poetry, reflections on March 8, 2013 at 8:51 am

This is from Thursday, January 13, 2005. I’d posted it elsewhere, but I am trying to consolidate 3 or 4 half forgotten blogs I was using about 8 or 9 years ago. I’m not editing them, I am just copy/pasting. As always, you get what you pay for! 🙂

Bad Poetry Corner

 

Life.
Life in the big city.
Life on the edge.
Life in the places in between.
Life, because there is no other meaningful choice.
Life because it is.
Life

Flying Solo

In change, life, parenting, reflections, time on February 26, 2013 at 9:05 am

Sometimes you have to step back and watch your child take wing and fly for themselves.

My daughter recently went through high school shopping. She wants to go to the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, one of the top schools of its kind in the country. (Beyonce went there, and more than a few actors whose names you’d recognize.)  I suggested it. She wasn’t that enthusiastic about it… at first.  We went to the open house, saw the show, and, lo, she came to embrace the idea.  She made it her own.

She submitted a writing portfolio in her primary interest and field of art, writing.  All I told her was write about something she was familiar with, something she knew from experience. She let me read it. (She didn’t have to. If she had said, no, I would have been curious, but respected that.)

She also presented herself for a vocal audition.  She has a clean, clear, high soprano voice.  Tentative and untrained, but there is something there.  That’s her Plan B for getting in.

The poetry and short stories were dark, detailed, expressive, and impressive.  I did not review or comment on the content.  I made a few editing suggestions, some she ignored, and then she submitted it.  (I did wonder, only in passing, if I should refer her to a psychologist, though! lol)

She qualified academically, she passed the first auditions in both writing and vocal, and just finished with her final callback auditions. She feels good about the process.

I suggested the school, but she embraced the idea. When she went to visit, I delivered her, then stepped back while she interviewed them, unlike many whose parents seemed to be doing all the talking.

If (and when, we hope) she gets in, it will be on her own merit. She’ll never have any reason to doubt that it was her own ability that got her there. And that’s how it should be.

Sometimes you have to step back and watch your child take wing and fly for themselves.

Someone recently commented that my daughter was remarkably mature.  She is smart, bright, and witty, but mature?  She has all the problems, issues, fears, and hormones of being a teenaged woman.  She is, I hope, headed in the right direction to maturity, but that is a few years down the road.

I was a stay at home dad for the first few years. I didn’t talk baby talk to her. I just talked to her. When we went to the park, for a walk or to play, as soon as she could move on her own two feet, I got rid of the stroller. (Yes, I carried her when she got tired.)  I let her be kid. I have encouraged her to read at every step of the way and to her make up her own mind every step of the way… well, mostly.  Sometimes I do say, no.  I am a parent, not an enabling friend.

I let her take risks.  When she falls, I console her, but I let her take the risks.  (I still hover, but at a discrete distance.)

But she is a child, a teenager.  I have to let her have her childhood, bearing in mind that she will be an adult faster than most parents are ever willing to admit. I have to encourage, I have to raise an independent, confident person.

One day I will be very old and she may be looking after me.  I want her to look at me then with the same love and tenderness and encouragement with which I look at and treat her now, to hold me dear as I hold her dear now.

Philosophy, faith, and truth… from a certain point of view

In life, memories, philosophy, reflections on February 22, 2013 at 12:08 am

One day, when I was a lad in junior high, my father took me along on a run to the post office.

Shortly after we set out, he glanced back at me in the rear view mirror as I sat in the back seat staring out the window at the pretty co-eds jogging around the university.  (The latter has nothing to do with the story, but admiring the lovely “older” college women was a major preoccupation at that age! lol)

So, my father asked, rather matter of factly, what was the population of the world. I paused, and replied, “around 3 1/2 billion.”  I asked why he’d asked, if only because he would have known the answer himself.

We came up to a stop light and he turned and told me something that I have remembered to this day and incorporated into my world view, lo these many decades..

“There are 3 1/2 billion people in world and there are probably 3 1/2 billion religions in the world,” he said.

I looked at him, puzzled, but even then with a glimmer of understanding.

He told me that everyone, each individual, has their own view and/or understanding of what they believe to be true.  Even people two people that appear to believe exactly the same thing will have some minor, or even major, point of disagreement about the faith or philosophy they hew to.

I nodded, wondering where he was going with this.

He pulled into a parking space in front of the P.O., shut the car off and, looking me square in the eye, told me this: Everybody has the right to what they believe.to be The Truth. .  Listen, be polite, and accept what they say as true… for them.  Discuss and argue when the time and emotions are right. Never tell a person they are wrongheaded or an idiot. Just respect that they have a different viewpoint and move on.  And the most important thing I want you to remember is this,  always stay true to what you believe. Be true to yourself.  Hold fast to your beliefs.  Learn from the world around, adapt what you believe as needs must, and trust yourself.  You’ll live a happier and maybe longer life because of it.

His council I took.  And my own council I keep.  And I am happier for it.

To this day I am fascinated by other’s beliefs.  I have read many and disparate books of faith and philosophy.  From each I have learned something… and yet I have remained happy with my own belief structure, tweaking it as I age and learn.

Mary and Peter, A Tale of Love Renewed

In life, love, memories, reflections on February 21, 2013 at 10:46 pm

My father’s favorite first cousin was married  to decent man, a lawyer and, later, state judge, by trade.  They raised a good family and had a good life.  But they drifted apart. The kids had all left for college and/or moved out.  He bought a sports car and gradually became more involved in philanthropic activities.  She started writing.  And they drifted farther apart.

Two active people that shared the same house, but saw little of each other.  He’d stay late at the courthouse or a function.  She’d be out networking and flogging her cookbook.  He took her for granted and would forget they were going out. She would have things that came up and had to postpone planned events. They argued increasingly over inconsequential things. He started sleeping in the guest bedroom and, after a suitable separation, divorced.

A year passed.  He calls her up and asks her out, dinner and the opera.  She agrees, but warns him that if he forgets, he doesn’t get a second chance.  The date goes well.  A two weeks later, they do it again, same terms.  He sends flowers. She’s pleased, to a certain extent.  Third time, they end up at her place, the house she inherited from her mother.  They share a bed. Things go well.

Next morning she laid down the law.  He may ask her out, take her to the theater, symphony, et al.  She has no problem with him sleeping over… for a weekend or vacation period at most.  If he promises to call, or makes a date, or a promises something and fails to follow through, that’s it, story over.

They never moved in with the other, yet shared each other’s beds and homes.  They loved each other yet chose to live apart by a strict set of rules she enforced.

I had many an occasion to dine and visit with them. It was obvious they were deeply in love.

She told me once that they had found that keeping a bit of distance and treating each “date” like they were trying to impress and please each other, never taking the other for granted for fear of losing the other, gave their relationship and love new life.

And so they continued till she passed from this life.

A couple more in love I have rarely met.

And that is today’s tale of love.

Words For a Friend

In inevitabiliy, life, poem, poetry, reflections, time on October 12, 2012 at 10:47 pm

We age, our youth a distant memory.

We grow, becoming more with the years.

We look back and marvel.

We look ahead in wonder.

We age and yet we live.

There is a simple beauty in that.

And yours shows through.

Ray Bradbury

In life, memories, poetry, reflections on June 6, 2012 at 1:33 pm

We come, we go.
We are born, we create, we die.
And the best of us leave something that improves us all.

Ray Bradbury.

He is among the best of us.
He is gone, but left good works behind.
And leaves memories sweet.

So many…

In life, poem, poetry, reflections on May 28, 2012 at 1:42 pm

So many things to think about.

So many things to do.

So many people to love.

What’s a fellow to do?