Revitalization's Weblog

For the curious, questioning, and wandering soul

Archive for February, 2011

this is why we fight

Come the war
Come the avarice
Come the war
Come hell

Come attrition
Come the reek of bones
Come attrition
Come hell

This is why
Why we fight
Why we lie awake
And this is why
This is why we fight

When we die
We will die
With our arms unbound

And this is why
This is why
Why we fight
Come hell

Bride of quiet
Bride of all unquiet things
Bride of quiet
Bride of hell

Come the archers
Come the infantry
Come the archers
Of hell

This is why
Why we fight
Why we lie awake
This is why
This is why we fight

And when we die
We will die
With our arms unbound
And this is why
This is why we fight
Come hell
Come hell

This is why
Why we fight
Why we lie awake
This is why
This is why we fight

When we die
We will die with our arms unbound
And this is why
This is why we fight

So come to me
Come to me now
Lay your arms around me
And this is why
This is why
We fight
Come hell
Come hell
Come hell
Come hell

-The Decemberists

Entropy

It’s a universal law: all systems will naturally tend towards chaos. The entropy of the universe is constantly increasing,ever since the big bang, everything is getting more and more chaotic. I think this is also true for human life: we begin as children, young and innocent. Bright-eyed and awestruck at everything around us. Life is so simple, pleasant. There’s usually love, there’s usually simplicity. Perhaps I am idealizing this universal notion of a childhood, or perhaps it seems this way looking back, but I can surely say that times were much simpler back then. We were urged to be creative, learn, grow, and run.

But, as we age, things get complicated. It occurs slowly and we start growing up. Responsibility and realization. The grimy truths are revealed and a pessimistic world unravels before our eyes. We begin to notice evils, wrong-doings, war and violence. We begin to recognize negativity and understand that life is terminal, everything is terminal.

I can only imagine that this will continue. As I enter the next decades, life will reveal more and become increasingly chaotic.

I find it difficult to grapple with. I find it difficult to not fall prey to it all. To not lose faith. I find it hard to hold onto the good, to the positive. I find it hard to grasp, with every fiber, onto the tiniest glimmer of hope. I find it hard to not slip into the negativity, the faithlessness, the questioning. It’s a struggle and it’s draining– to keep fighting for what you want in life, to keep pushing towards some unknown aspiration, to keep striving. It’s exhausting and it seems so much easier to give up. To let yourself go, to not care anymore, to just drift through life, coasting and taking whatever comes nonchalantly.

But. I don’t think that’s right. It can’t be right. It’s a struggle, it’s a fight, it’s a boxing match against all them demons. When you run until you can’t anymore, when you push your physicality to the last limit, when you aim higher…. well that’s a feeling that cannot be contained. Achievement, power, strength, will… It’s hard to attain, but perhaps good things are worth struggling for. Work hard and life will be fruitful.

I’m not saying that I know this to be true. But it’s something that I hope is true. The other option seems all too easy, all too worthless. I guess we all must invite the chaos and keep reaching for things just out of our reach.

Thoughts Are Free

Driving down the road, the sun is bright and radiating. It’s shining and rain patters on my windshield. Naked rain. When the traffic light turns red, I slow down and stop. I look to my right and I recognize a man. I have seen this man only once before, perhaps one month ago. I have seen this man at this same spot. He was sitting on the same bench, on the same side, with the same look upon his eyes. Distant.

From appearance, I assume this man is homeless. He is adorned in the same clothing as before, has a bushy beard, and is covered in a film of dirt from head to toe. As I passed him the first time, I became curious. And passing the man again today only reminded me of my initial interest.

I thought about stuff. About how each or most of us have stuff attached to us– a house, clothes, a bed, a television set, an ipod, a laptop. But we also have other things we are attached to– our parents, our friends, our society. We live embedded in a web of stuff, hoarding more and more as we grow old. But this man, this homeless man who sat on the bench, well, he has less stuff.  He has less. But we share one thing. We all share one thing, one stuff, one intangible item: thought. We all hold thoughts, experiences, emotions.

The mental capacity to think, to remember, and to reflect. All humans have it. This man, perhaps he had no job, no home, no family to go back to. But, he has one thing. He has his thoughts. Thoughts that are all to himself, thoughts that he owes to no one. I found that idea so invigorating, so inspiring.

Decartes said “I think, therefore I am.” The act of thinking, of ideas, of questioning one’s existence and the reality around us. Thoughts are free and freeing- it is all that life truly is: thinking and thinking… until our last day… until our last thought

Life. It’s a big word.

Where does my body end and the world begin? There’s 7 billion people. I’m breathing, watching my chest rise and fall, rise and fall. I’m taking in air, inhale and exhale, inhale and exhale deep. There’s 7 billion people breathing, their chests rise and fall, rise and fall. Some for the first time, some for the last time. Breath.

I think we learn from everything we do. I think there’s a inherent and basic thirst to treat every experience as important. Learn from what we do, learn from where we walk, learn from what we see, learn from where we stand. I think by absorbing everything around us and taking in every solitary moment and vision and feeling, we learn. We are learning about this earth, that seems to be a part of us, and us a part of it. It’s where we stemmed from. This gorgeous being, this special place in the universe perfectly place between the stars. And somehow we ended up here. Infinite chances that it wouldn’t be so. Infinite reasons for it not to be so. But, you only need one- one chance to be.

Are we really that special, that unique, that stellar? That we were given the chance- random or not, it does not matter. Out of all the potential people, out of all the potential possibilities, we came here. We started here, in this time and place. We were born from the stars, perhaps from infinite happenings, perhaps from absolutely nothing but chance. One single chance brought life, brought this reality to be. Is that crazy? Perhaps for our simple mammalian minds, but perhaps it’s the truth.

We live with the veil of immortality. An ignorance of where we are, of where we’re going. Speeding through space, our earth, our planet, breeding life endlessly and breathing endlessly.

I think unquenchable curiousity drives us. It’s that underlying question, that inkling, that place that the wandering mind goes. You crave to learn about everything around you because subliminally, in the deepest reaches of the mind, you realize that all that you know and all that you are is completely undefinable. I think we live in awe, and rather than sitting around stupefied by the vastness of the universe and a single atom, we keep moving. Constantly jumping from task to task, relationship to relationship as if that’s all that matters. I’m here to say that THAT is trivial. Can’t you see? This sense of need for accomplishment, need for love, need to be fulfilled, need to work hard and stand up for what’s right. What does it all matter? We’re simply, oh so simply, scurrying across this ball of mud we call home. Forgive me for calling this pristine place, this magical pinpoint in space a ball of mud, but it is. It makes me so furious, and partly ashamed because I partake in it as well, in the fact that we forget. Each and everyday we fall prey to a natural, animalistic need. We fall prey to what we think is right and what we think is good. We subject ourselves to what we know, what society has been saying for centuries. We accept and we go. We search for love, for acceptance, for entertainment. It’s all so so trivial, so small.

Look up, dream big and then bigger than that. Our primary concerns, well they have to be bigger than that. What else is there? Perhaps I’m asking big questions, perhaps the biggest questions. But those are the only questions that count, the only ones that are worth pondering about.

Life. It’s a big word. It attempts to contain a lot. I mean a lot. Perhaps it attempts to contain the uncontainable. Life is everything. No, not just the breathing, it’s everything. Because we came from it all, we came from stardust, from a flicker in space, from chance. Life is just as uncontainable as the universe itself, perhaps more so. And to ask what the meaning of life is, well that’s like asking what the meaning of everything is. And, I think that’s what is what drives underlying curiousity. We all have it, we all know that in the dark corners of the mind, there’s a question unanswered.

I mean is it useless to think about? Is it endless and therefore pointless?

I believe, with every fiber in me, that this is the only thing that matters. The only thing that should and does matter. Truly. Deeply. Life, while we may never know where it began, or how we came to be, or why, that’s the only thing that drives the concious mind. Trying to wrap one’s mind around reality, trying to contain the undeniably uncontainable. It’s exhausting and glorious.