Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swine flu and common sense

I have stopped watching TV around September last year.
One of the best decisions I ever made – I highly recommend it!
But of course if the mountain doesn’t go to Mohamed, Mohamed comes to the mountain anyway.
So like it or not I couldn’t avoid the “swine virus” news craze from forcing itself on my private life.
All the people are talking is the swine flu – Paris Hilton and the Octo Mum must be fuming!

Where is the news?
What is the news?
That we live in a society of dumb down individuals that can not see past the media manipulation and the BS the big money and big government is feeding us daily?
That common sense has being damned unacceptable and the only thing that matter is the expert’s opinion and the so called “scientific evidence”?

I grew up on a farm and although the farmers were uneducated people they knew that smoking cigarettes was bad for you, they knew that drinking alcohol was destroying your liver.
I mean they did not need a scientific study to tell them that putting a foreign substance in your body is bad for your health.
Yet we are consuming industrial quantities of artificial coloring, sweetening and flavoring every day – why?
Because there is no scientific “evidence” that the crap is bad for us.

So let me put it this way:
For decades now we have been raising animals in agro industrial complexes – translation –
We are raising animals in hell holes and in order to keep them from dying we fed them buckets of drugs and antibiotics and pump them up with steroids and growth hormones.

Then I ask you: Why is swine flu or bird flu such a mystery?
I mean after exposing the viruses in those animals to such a bombardment drugs and genetically mutated feeds, what exactly do you expect?
Healthy, delicious, nutritious food?
If you are what you eat, then you are what your animals that you eat, eat too.
Well that pretty much means you are full of shit :)

But have no fear, the government and the scientific community will protect you from the evil viruses.
Of course that is until they will be caught sleeping at the wheel – can you say Katrina?
And trust me if a virus pandemic goes out of control it will make Katrina look like child’s play.

Europe lost half of its population in the great plague.
We should have learned that you don’t shit where you eat.

We should have learned by now that beating nature in submission is a loosing proposition and the only way to survive is by living in harmony with mother nature – which by the way can provide for us all, if we stop being so greedy and looking only to make a profit by exploiting our planet.

So since there is no “scientific evidence” that we are fucking up our environment, forget your common sense and keep on watching that TV for more enlightening and entertaining news!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Advice for a young father

I grew up in a very patriarchal society.
I did not know any better and I thought that was the way things were supposed to be.

Men were supposed to be the bread winners and the women the home makers.
Boys play with swords and cars and girls play with dolls and lace.
Girls were supposed to be soft and gentle and boys were not supposed to cry.
Women were supposed to be romantic and men were supposed to be chivalrous.

I remember coming to the United States in the very beginning of the 80’s.
Feminism was still alive and a very shocking and puzzling thing for me.

If men were such an evil bunch, why the American women were trying to emulate them?
It seemed to me totally backwards.
Women were destroying femininity because masculinity was bad and some how turning women into men would make the world a better place?!?

I was working for a big corporation.
The director was an older woman.
I remember going to a business lunch with all my colleagues.
I walk ahead of the group, being the youngest male, and opened the door for everybody to exit.
To my surprise our young accountant said to me:
- Why are you opening the door for me, do you think I am handicapped?
I was speechless as she exited the company ahead of everybody including our older director, which by the way stopped in front of me and said:
- Thank you, that is vey polite! – I think she wanted to make a point.
And then at the elevator, same thing, the young lady cut in front of everybody.

I was puzzled by the fact that every American woman was waiting for the prince Charming to come and rescue them on a white horse – or a Rolls Royce, but at the same time they called me a male chauvinist pig for calling them the “fair sex” – probable because I lacked the white horse or the RR :)

I still believe the women should be beautiful and soft and feminine and I don’t think that being feminine it is less than being a man – actually I believe that women are much better human beings than men – and I even learn some things from them, like getting in touch with my feelings and not be ashamed to show my emotions.

I am the father of two beautiful daughters and as they grow up and start turning into young ladies I dread the fact they will live in a society where chivalry is dead.
Equality between sexes in the working place is a natural right and as so it should be the legal right of all men and women.

But I always wondered as a woman how does it feel to be treated like a man?
Do you think that a man that opens you the door, kisses your hand, offers you a chair or brings you flowers is a chauvinist?
Is chivalry a bad thing or even better; is teaching my daughters to be and act like ladies a bad thing?

I don’t think your opinion will change the way I raise my daughter – my wife is already in charge of that – but I am really curious of knowing how you see this issue.

Friday, April 24, 2009

What would you do?

I am one of those people that had a hundred jobs in his life.
(I’m not that old but at least it feels like that.)
Three times I had the opportunity to be in charge, to be the boss.
I found that dealing with equipment and problems are a breeze compared with managing people, specifically managing their personal relationships.

Here is a little story that happened to me.
I was managing a group of five people and my department got four tickets to a football game – expensive ones – from a satisfied client.

In my department I had one guy that went to high school with me.
Not a big friend in high school but now that he worked together we got closer.
The problem was that he was not a very good worker and everybody knew it.
Now here is my dilemma: Who gets the tickets?

This dilemma – of choosing between my feelings and my reason, between my heart and my brain – has visited me a couple of time in my life and it is one of the things that have made me ponder a great deal.
I’m not going to tell you – yet – what I did because I am curious on how would you deal with a situation like that.

So what would you do if you were in my position?
I thank you all for your comments.
Some very interesting and creative answers!

The way I did it was like the majority of you suggested; I give the tickets to the people that deserve it and kept one for myself :)
The problem was that right after I made my public announcement of the winners my good friend stormed in my office and gave me a piece of his mind.

I thought that he knew that he did not deserve the reward and that wouldn't be a problem but instead he brought up our friendship and how I betray him and that I was a shitty friend and all sorts of nasty reproaches.

I was in shock and did not know what to say.
Fortunately I came up with a good lie. I told him that the ticket I kept was for him not for me and I did it to keep up the moral of the group and avoid the favoritism accusations.
He bought it and everything went smooth.
Fortunately that was the last year for me at that company so I did not have to face that choice again.

The problem still remains unsolved for me.
How do you choose between an undeserving friend or lover and deserving colleague or person?
How do you choose between your heart and your brain, between your feelings and your reason?

The best advice I have for that is to keep your eyes open for that kind of conflict arising and do your best to prevent putting yourself in the choosing position.
Be cause if you have to choose, no matter what you do you will get screwed :)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The secret of success

The secret of success is:

This is a story of a young man in search of enlightenment.
He dropped out of college – after the first semester – to earn money for a pilgrimage to India.
He came back a Buddhist with his head shaved and wearing traditional Indian clothing.
During this time, he experimented with psychedelics, calling his LSD experiences
"One of the two or three most important things he had done in his life.”

On returning from India Steve started assembling computers in his garage and in 1976 with his friend Stephen Wozniak started Apple, the first company to produce a commercially successful small computer with a graphical user interface: The Macintosh.

Fifty of the world’s self made billionaires are high school or college dropouts.
The most famous of them Bill Gates got his honorary degree from Harvard 30 years latter after dropping from the prestigious school to start Microsoft.

What do you think of starting a company in your garage?
Bad idea, right?
I mean, I can think of a half dozen reasons why such an enterprise would fail.
Hey, a really, really intelligent person could come up with even more reasons why that wouldn’t work.

Behind every failure there is a good excuse.
And it looks that the more intelligent you are the more likely to find a really good reasons for failing.
A lot of very intelligent people are frozen in fear of failure, while the ignorant just keep on trying.

Ignorance is bliss.
The more ignorant you are the more unlikely to find a reason for failure, hence you have no reason for quitting, no fear of failure.

There is genius in action and opportunity opens the doors to those who have the courage to knock.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Looking for a purpose

You must know my favorite principle by now:
“I am that I am”
I am the result of my actions and my actions are the result of my thoughts, witch in turn are the results of my beliefs.
Change your belief system and you will change your life.
Keep the same beliefs and you will be stuck in the same karmic wheel.

So I have done some rethinking and rearranging on my belief system and I am about to start some new planning in my life.
Another of my favorite sayings:
“If you're not in control of your life, somebody else will be”
My new plan has to start with a purpose.

Every life has a purpose and so should our endeavors.
There is no purposeless life.
Not only that every person is born with a purpose in life but also every person is born with the talent, intelligence and all the resources he needs to fulfill that purpose.

The cause of human suffering – IMO- is not “desire” but “wrong desire”.
We do what we think we should do; what we think it is good for us and what we think will give us the maximum satisfaction in life, but rarely what we were born to do.
In other words we set out goals that are against our own purpose and nature.

We see ourselves as single individuals rather than a part of a greater existence and our desires are of a lower, personal level rather than of the bigger and complex design of which we are part of.

We also go on achieving these goals alone, not as a part of the group, and instead of creating cooperation we create competition and friction with our fellow man.
No good will ever come out of any enterprise that serves the desire of one single individual no matter how small or big that enterprise is.

A blog is a small enterprise.
What is the purpose of a blog if it serves only the person that writes it?
Of course there are some therapeutic benefits coming out from the venting out of ones frustrations in an open forum – that is the basic mechanism of a confessional – but after that what higher good does it serve?

What is the higher purpose we serve, you and I?
After half of year of blogging I ask myself:
“Where is this road going?”
Do you know where your blogging is going, and if so would you be so kind as to share on your perspective and experience?

Other wise you will have to suffer through another six month of self inquiry and running in circles looking for an answer :)

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Playing for keeps

Nobody wants to be poor or uneducated.
Nobody wants to have a meaningless, unfulfilling miserable existence.
For the most part we all want to be and do good.
Nobody wants to be a loser.

I’ve been looking at life and in particular at my own life trying to understand why with all our extraordinary efforts we fail to materialize our good intentions.
Why is success so important to me?
Well, for one thing I want to be able to offer my children a good life, a good education, a good chance for a fulfilling life.

I never had a problem of becoming successful in whatever I was trying to accomplish but every time my success ended in a crash and burn dive.
It was no problem. If I lost a job, I would find another one.
If I failed my business, I would start another one.
If my relationship did not work out as I planed it, I would find another girl friend.

When I was single I looked at all this like a game.
When disaster struck, I thought of it as bad karma, as paying the dues for my wrong doing.
I just picked up the pieces and started all over again.
But all that has changed the moment I started a family.
Failure for me is not an option anymore.

I can not go through another foreclosure and if I have a fight with my wife divorce is not an option.
The specter and possibility of failure has been a constant companion of mine for the last ten years.
The fear of another disaster has kept me from getting into financial troubles now when a lot of people are in trouble and sheer determination has kept my marriage afloat past all the storms.

Nut even if fear has worked for me keeping me out of the trouble I could not accept fear as the philosophy behind my life.
It just goes against all my beliefs and feelings.
But what else is there?

I have tried almost everything one can think of.
I have read all the how to be successful books.
I have meditated and contemplated for years.
I’ve been dissecting my life on this blog for months now.
What am I doing wrong?

After a lot of thought I think I have found the answer.
The secret of success is not knowing how to win but knowing how to lose.
I don’t have a problem wining, my problem is that I don’t know how to manage my loses.
I am like a football or basketball team with an excellent offensive but with no defense at all.
I am like America in Vietnam; winning all the battles but losing the war.

Now I understand what fear has been doing for me.
Fear has kept me on the defense.
When everybody was borrowing money for a bigger, better, more expensive house and life, I settle for and comfortable and affordable one.
When people droped out of their marriages I did the hard work of keeping mine alive.
I did well and now I understand why.

I like to be in control of my life.
I believe in God and I believe God gives us all great opportunities in life.
But when opportunity knocks at your door you have at least to open it.
Which reminds me; Interest rates are really low now. Time to refinance my house.
I am playing for keeps now!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

A madness to my method

I don’t know if you remember but once upon a time around the60’s, 70’s Japan had an outburst of development that made it into an economical superpower.
From the electronics to car manufacturing they use the same smilingly basic formula:
They would take the best there was on the market at that time (let’s say the best car engine from Mercedes, best suspension from Peugeot, best style from Ferrari etc) change and improve the original designs and make a Japanese car, like the Nissan Z80.

I don’t know if my data is 100% correct but the idea behind it is correct.
I have a Nissan Maxima I bought 13 years ago and a Quest minivan I bought a year ago.
They both have the same V6 engine that Mercedes sport cars had 30 years ago – of course with more improvements.
Which brings me to the next point:

The way they evolve is incremental – Let’s keep the Nissan example.
Every year they change the basic model a little bit.
If the change turns out to be good they keep it but if the change turns out to be bad they drop it and try something else.
But here is the point:
The changes are so minute that the overall quality of the car doesn’t go down the toilet.

Unlike the Japanese, the way we Americans build cars is starting from scratch.
I have a friend that worked for a Ford dealership when Ford created the Ford Taurus.
Ford Taurus became an overnight success, best selling sedan 3 years in a row – beating up Toyota, Honda, Nissan and all the other American sedans.
But then they change the Taurus and the new model was so radically different than the first one, that nobody wanted to buy it.
Ford Taurus lost the market and it never recovered.

That is true for so many other successful cars Detroit built, like Thunderbird, Corvette and Mustang, cars that have become classics but then have lost the market by redesigning to inferior models.

What is car building has to do with Zen, you may ask.
Well, if you look at how nature evolves it looks like the Japanese way.
Nature doesn’t start a new animal from scratch.
Nature improves by small amounts and keeps the successes and discards the failures.
Sounds pretty simple and pretty logical, doesn’t it?

Well, it might be the logical way of life but if you look at my life, (and probable at your life as well) my life looks more like the American way of doing business then the natural way of evolution.
My life it is not a continuous organic growth but rather a hap hazard trial and error enterprise.
Success is fallowed by total disaster followed by starting again from scratch, trying something new and different, followed by another disaster.
And I am not talking only about financial problems; I am talking all aspects of my life, including career and relationships.

My life always seemed to have a plan but now looking in retrospective it never had the right method.
Although my spirituality has changed to Zen Buddhism my life, my actions are left behind to the crash and burn, trial by error philosophy.

Monday, April 13, 2009

The practical enlightenment

The practical enlightenment

There are a lot of stories and metaphors of life.
Here is one I like in particular for its practicality – life as a river.
Imagine life is a river and time is the flow of water.

First you are born.
Your soul, ego or mind, whatever you want to call it is put in this boat – that is your physical body – and we are pushed down the river.

As a child you don’t know much about what is going on.
You just enjoy the ride and if the river hits some rapids you just go - yahoo!
There are others – parents and teachers – that take care of the navigation.

But as you grow up they teach you that the river is dangerous and you have to stay out of the trouble waters.
So they teach you to control the boat and you start to paddle.

Then you become an adult and now you are on your own.
The problem is that many of us have no idea where we are going and so many of us end up paddling against the current and of course many of us don’t manage to stay out of the trouble waters.

Some of us though, get the idea and start taking advantage of life’s opportunities and manage to navigate the river.
But the river some times gets wild – like right now, when it seems we are going over a water fall and we don’t know where the bottom is.
But don’t worry after the waterfall there is a calm and safe pool – if you make it out of the fall alive.

Any way, you get a little bruised, a little wet but you keep on going.
You see, the river of time will carry you no matter what. There is no stopping until you hit the ocean!
Now on the river of life you meet other boats and exchange stories and maybe for a while you go down the river together.
Such is life.

Some people will tell you to stop fighting the current – which is a good advice always.
Some people will tell you to throw away your ores and be like a child, carried by the river of time.
Some people will tell you to study the river and learn how to navigate in harmony with the forces of the water.
Some people will tell you they will sell you the secret of navigation in exchange for your soul.

But no matter what you believe or what you do, one morning you wake up and you find yourself in the middle of the ocean.
You have made it, you will always will, because that is where the river ends.
So don’t worry, enjoy your ride.

Row, row, row your boat, merrily down the stream…

Some more questions

About seventeen years ago, when Bush the father was president, America went through a little recession – I don’t know if many of you remember that one – It wasn’t that bad or spectacular as the one right now but I will always remember it because at that time I lost my house to foreclosure, plus a large part of my other investments – stocks in particular.

It was a hard blow for me but fortunately at that time I was a single guy, no family or kids to take care of, so after some painful readjustments to reality, I pulled myself out of the mental depression and started rebuilding my life again.

I have learned a lesson – actually several lessons - about life and vouch never to be caught with my pants down again.

This bad turn of the economy I am faring much better.
I have paid all of my debt – well almost all, I still have my house mortgage but that is the only one – I have saved some money for the eventual loss of income and my investments, which by the way are not doing well at all but at least I can hope one day will go up again.
At this moment I am refinancing my mortgage and God willing it will cut my monthly payments in half, which will further increase my financial stability.

So what is this all has to do with Zen Buddhism?
And that is the problem.
Buddha never had to deal with mortgages, stock market, insurance, credit, interest rates, recessions, subprime crisis and other joys of the modern life.
He lived in an agrarian society where all this complexities of modern life did not exist; hence he never spoke about them.

So the question is: can the wisdom of the ancient be applied to the modern life?
Probable most of you will say “yes” – which by the way is my point of view as well.
So the next question is: How do you do it?

What is the Zen of “credit”, “interest rates” or “stock market”?
Should I renounce all material possessions, shave my head, put on the robe of the ascetic and go begging in the streets?
What if I want a family and children?
Is enlightenment reserved only for monks?
Can I be a father, a husband and a Buddha at the same time?
Do I have to spend the rest of my life on a job I don’t enjoy just to pay my bills?
Can I do what I like instead and enjoy a decent, comfortable life?

Sure I can.
I believe that anything is possible.
I just wish I knew how to turn that thought into reality.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

The practical Buddha

I am not as enlightened as the self title “Buddha of Hollywood” might suggest.
Actually I chose that name for its ironic and funny side rather than for religious significance.
I am merely a student of Zen and life, more than anything else, and my only claim to fame is that I know that I don’t know shit about anything except that everybody else knows at least or less than me.

There is a lot of theory out there about enlightenment, satori, nirvana and getting your soul into heaven but aside my zazen practice nothing else has anything to do with the reality of life.
And reality is far from the Buddhist, Christian or other idealistic propaganda you might subscribe to.

You see for me reality is the ultimate truth.
I know, I know, there is no reality; reality is just an illusion.
But if I have to subscribe to that idea and accept the premise that it is all an illusion then this inexorable conclusion follows:
You are an illusion as well!

You are an illusion – the ego - trapped into another illusion – the world.
There is no escape from that predicament.

Well, you might say; not if you realize the illusion is just an illusion and not the real you.
But there is no real you – the ego is an illusion.
So now you are an illusion – the ego – that has an illusion – the real you – still trapped into another illusion – the world.

You see where this goes?
As an illusion you can only have another illusion.
There is no way out of the illusion until you actually return to the no-thig reality that created the illusion of the world and the ego in the first place.
In other words until you die.

So what all that means?
I don’t know what it means for you but for me it means one thing only.
Since this is my show, I will have to put up the best performance I am capable of and have the best time of my illusion called “life”

Break a leg!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

My Predicament

The reason I am making this inquiry into “life remodeling” is because I would like to make some changes in my life.
You see, abut 13 years ago I got this job in the “Entertainment Industry”
The fact that they call it “Industry” and not “Entertainment Art” should have raised a red flag but at that time it didn’t.

I thought I was getting in a creative, artistic environment where you can meet and mingle with other creative and talented people and I would love what I was doing and doing what I love - like the good book says you should.

Well, Hollywood is like that only in the movies.
In real life I ended up doing a job I did not like. I lost interest in what I was doing. I did not keep up with the technological progress, did not climb the corporate ladder and ended up going to work just to pay my bills.
Like most of the people I know.

Since I started dabbling in the spiritual world, I realized that my belief – emotion that propelled me into my career had changed, and my new belief - emotion “I don’t give a shit about my job” will eventually materialize in me getting laid off.

So here is my predicament.
I am dreaming of doing something creative while I am doing a job that I don’t like anymore but I can’t just simply quit my job because I have a family and my kids to support.
So how can I change my career “remodel” my life without going through the crush and burn “remodeling” of my past?

I watched God doing his/her “remodeling” and it looks like magic.
It is beautiful, it is painless, and it is perfect.
God doesn’t destroy everything to the ground each time he wants to do a remodeling.
Gods remodeling is not destruction is evolution!
Why, I can only act when the shit hits the fan, when everything is lost and I have no other way to go but up and start all over again?
Why can’t I effect evolutionary changes in my life and I get stuck in shitty predicaments like this?

Well, because like most of us I learn by trial and error.
We go through life like a broken disk player, doing the same mistakes over and over again, till eventually after years of pain and suffering we get it right.
Sounds familiar?

Well, it has to be a better way to do things and I am going to find it out!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ageneral review

Society is determined by its social groups.
Social groups are determined by their members.
Individuals are determined by their actions.
Your actions are determined by your thoughts.
Your thoughts are determined by your beliefs.
Your beliefs are determined by the society you live in.

If you want to change a society you have to change the way the social groups act.
If you want to change a social group you have to change how its members act.
If you want to change yourself you have to change how you act.
If you want to change how you act you have to change the way you think.
If you want to change the way you think you have to change your beliefs.
To change your beliefs you have to change the way society is conditioning you.

Here is a classical example of social conditioning:

We all have an idea of the ideal man or woman we want to marry.
That ideal was implanted into our subconscious by society in general and by media, your pier group, family, friends, religious leaders, authority figures etc in particular.
The society wants you to marry Mr. or Ms. Right.

Almost 50% of the American population believes in finding Mr. and Ms. Right.
A little bit more than 50% believe in finding Mr. and Ms. Compatible.
In other words they will not marry the person “society” is expecting them to marry but the person that makes them happy and whole.
Almost 50% of marriages in USA end up in divorce and you know why?

Changing, remodeling your life requires challenging and changing your belief system, breaking down your stereotypes, your icons and idols.

Here are some examples:
How do you define success?
Is it money, power, fame or happiness?
How do you define God?
Is it your religion, your church, your holly scriptures, your religious practice, your personal experience, inside you or outside you?
How do you define love, enlightenment, marriage, peace, security, friendship, politics, wealth, knowledge etc?

Change that and your life will change!
Change that and your world will change with you!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The bubbling trouble

It used to be that capitalism was a mirroring image of natural competition and evolution.
That’s why they call it the free market.
You made a product that people needed and wanted – not necessarily in that order – and if your product was good, people would pay good money for it.
That was the “good money for good products” glory time, when Cadillac use to mean the best money can buy.

Then some brilliant ass hole came up with the idea that you can make more money if you make a lot of cheap “disposable” goods.
And that brought us in the “consumer capitalism” phase, where we started to loose “the best in the world” title but we made lots and lots of money.

Then some other brilliant genius came up with the idea that we don’t’ have to make the products in USA anymore we make the junk wherever the labor is cheapest and sell it over here at astronomical profits.
Ant that is when “Made in China” became a national logo.

But making junk in China was not profitable enough so we decided that making nothing over here and selling it for billions was even more profitable.
Thus, we had the dot com bubble and of course the first bubble burst that inevitable followed.

The dot com bubble was gone but the idea of selling nothing was too good to drop so here we go again, this time with the subprime – real estate bubble.
Of course that ended up with a big bang also, and we are still trying to clean up the mess it created.

The interesting thing is the way we are fixing the “irresponsible” actions of the financial community is by “irresponsible” actions of the government.
Here we go again in a bubbling situation.
The money bubble.

How long do you think this bubble will grow before it pops?
Because, I am sorry to say it, but any bubble that keeps on growing has to burst at a certain point.
OK, we are going to pay back our debt. The question is how?
We have to make again products that are better and cheaper than what the Chinese are making and sorry folks but the only thing we seem to be good at, is blowing bubbles.

Looking into my crystal bubble, the future doesn’t look vey bright at this point.
It is going to be a very interesting ride, to say the list.

What do you say?

Friday, April 3, 2009

Am I paranoid?

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it”
George Santayana

It is very hard to look at your own life with absolute objectivity but I have notice that my life has a funny way of repeating the same scenario over and over again until I learn my mistakes and then the cycle stops.
I don’t know if your experience is the same or if you have any friends like that but it looks to me that history it’s repeating itself with each individual and with each generation.

That in itself, might not be such a bad thing.
We need to learn some how in order to grow.
But here is my question:
We have made such huge technological advancements as species, to the point that we can destroy or save the whole planet.
Can we afford to repeat the same mistakes our past generations have made?

I use not to think much about the future of the planet – it was always more about me and my life – but since I have become a father some profound change has taking place – I believe at hormonal level – I have become very susceptible to the pledge of others distress. I got that what people call “a maternal instinct”
And I am not talking about people only, but animal, plant and the mineral world as well.
Could it be also my Buddhist meditation practice has become more profound, more attuned about the same time?
I do not know exactly but certainly I have changed.

The reason I ‘m bringing in my meditation is because during my practice I have been receiving this emotional warning of catastrophic change.
I know what you are thinking “here goes another one of those impending doom, end of the world prophecies” but it is not a prophecy, it is just a feeling.
My heart is restless and my soul is troubled, but not for my self.
I am an old fart, I really don’t care if I die or not – I have lost that fear a long time ago!

I have a restless need to search, to learn, to act and to change.
I wish my emotions were clearer in what I have to do, but never the less I have to keep on going wherever my journey takes me.
Am I on a brink of a profound change?
Does anybody else feels the way I feel - that a profound shift in human consciousness is about to happen - or am I just paranoid?

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Who needs spirituality?

What is that you want from spirituality?
Do you want a free pass to heaven?
Do you want to make this world a better place?
Do you want to change yourself into a better person?
I mean, does your spiritual quest has a practical aspect to it or is it purely academic?

Let’s face it:
For the last 2000 years Christianity, Islam and Judaism have ruled the Western world.
(Or at least have been fighting over the rule of it.)
Look around at the hatred and war we are waging against each other in the name of God.
It hasn’t work for the last 2000 years, it is not going to work now.

Love is the way
Agree 100%
But love it is a very hard emotion to manage.
(Not because Jesus’ teachings are not valid but because I am not strong enough to follow the doctrine of love.)
That is my personal reason of choosing Buddhism as my spiritual practice.
(Notice I did not call it religion because I do not adhere to any organized religion practice.)
By practicing right thought and right action I have become more tolerant, less judgmental, I have open up my heart to more love and understanding than ever and in general I am a better Christian now as a Buddhist – if you know what I mean.

I also have a problem with the Buddhist doctrine.
At least with the way it is practiced here in the West.
Buddhism is supposed to be the spirituality of transformation.
Some where on the way we have lost that practicality.
Buddhism now, it is a very academic, dogmatic, empty dialog.
I do not care if this so called reality is temporary and I don’t care if it is an illusion.

I want to better myself; I want to better my life.
I want to laugh, to cry, to win, to loose, to live.
If Buddha had a problem with human suffering that is fine with me.
I do not have that problem.
I love my suffering, I love my struggle and I love my pain.
It means I am alive, for God’s sake.
I’ll have enough time to sit around in eternal bliss when I’m dead.

So are we going to get ourselves up from our meditations buts and do something about it, or are we just going to keep up the same bullshit we’ve been doing for the last 2000 years?
I don’t know about you but I am going for it.
I have nothing to lose :)