0302 – Do you love your life?

So I’ve been battling gastroenteritis (a.k.a traveler’s diarrhea) the whole week. It was is pretty bad. Vomits and stuff. But you probably didn’t wanna know that. I just put this in here because my friend told me not to write about my sickness. Heh.

Now… In all seriousness, this is an issue very dear to my heart. Self-love.

Once in a while, you read about lives of fellow beings that make you think hard about your own. Once in a longer while, you actually meet a compelling life force in person who makes you stop and really introspect. That life force can be similar to yours, but often it is vastly different, and unfamiliar. So unfamiliar that you can hardly imagine what would be of you if you’d lived the same way. And I mean that in the most neutral way possible–to me there is no such thing as good life or bad life; it’s just life as it unfolded at that moment.

You get to meet a handful of life forces like these over the course of your life, and I believe every encounter has a reason behind it. This life force that I’ve just met, who’s become a good friend of mine now, he’s quite a character–a free spirit who lets life take him to places, to try new things–sometimes strange, sometimes scary, sometimes wild, sometimes plain absurd. Quite unfamiliar to my own life indeed. Anyhow, the freedom to roam has given him a wealth of experiences and memories that only add to the vibrancy of the life force. He still has dreams, and he has his down moments, but in general–and I quote–he “loves [his] life so much it’s ridiculous.”

That’s what made me pause.

Do you love your life?

It’s not often that you meet someone who’s fully experiencing the joy of life. So whenever I meet one, I rejoice. And smile. It’s a marvelous gift–to love your life. A rarity. A gem. It doesn’t come easy to me at all.

I rarely give myself enough credit. It sucks, but it’s not something I can change overnight. I am one of those who dream of changing the world. Sometimes I dream about becoming famous. Sometimes I dream about being rich. Sometimes I dream about living in my world.

Alas, I wake up. Every time.

But dreams need not be all about the future. Because dreams can sometimes be enabled in the present. One can dream of freedom. One can dream of happiness. One can dream of love. One can dream of these things and grant them to oneself. Because we all do deserve our own love and affection. Life is not always easy. We know our potential and where we can go, but we miss out on all the beauty along the journey if we only just go. In a way, I feel ironic saying this since I haven’t fully convinced myself of this yet, but I believe many of us share the same sentiment.

 

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”-Rumi

 

May we all be wise.

 

For love of the self, and love of the world.

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0297 – The Part of Life We Didn’t Choose

I’m writing to you from the backwaters of Alleppey, Kerala, India. And by that, I mean from this:

It was one of the rare opportunities that I had to escape the chaos of the overpopulated, crowded India. Small wooden boats, traditional homes, coconut trees, and the low rumbling sound of the motor undisturbed by the honking and vrooming combine to provide a very very welcome relief. I was writing this post with a pen and a notepad, with pistachio nuts in my other hand. As I transcribe my posts onto here, I’m wondering why I haven’t done this before. It’s kinda nice to disconnect sometimes.

I haven’t been blogging for a while; I was sucked into the chaos of this country. With my internship, planning my weekend trips, the traffic, the wait and whatnot, I barely have time to  breath. And the air that I breath isn’t that particularly pleasant either. I was thinking about titling this post something like “From India with Love,” but I’d be lying if I say that right now. There’s no love yet. I’m still in culture shock mode I guess. I’ve met some really cool people here, but overall, it’s not been fun with the traffic, the honks, and the people trying to rip you off. It’s just… chaotic all the time. I keep thinking that I can’t live here.

You know… you’re born into an environment that shapes your character–kind of without a choice. But perhaps there is a reason for that. Perhaps there’s a reason for it all. The location/environment at which you’re born into is the part of life you did not really choose, but not long thereafter, we choose our life.

Why was I born in Thailand? Why’re so many people born in India? And why am I here to see this place?

India is such a culturally rich and diverse country that I can’t really do it justice with one blog post. I’m going to try to explore as much as I can, but you can’t really see all that India offers in eight weekends. One thing that’s really nice about India is that diversity is generally well-accepted. Well, they kinda have to; there’s so many of everyone everywhere. I was talking to my taxi driver last week, and he was telling me how he was Hindu, but he loved hearing from the Dalai Lama. “Very good man,” he said. You don’t really find that too often, not in the US.

The trajectory of this country will be interesting to see in the coming years. It can become homogenized as it continues to usher in the Western ways, but if it finds a way to retain its identity and cultural diversity, it can be very fascinating to see how globalization affects this giant.

Simplicity.

I wish scenes like this will be captured over and over.

0295 – Give up and live!

(c) Diane Perry, A PurposeFairy.com Reader

You know.. after my post yesterday, when I saw this Facebook cover photo above I just smiled. No further commentary needed.

The photo is created by Diane Perry, a PurposeFairy.com reader. Earlier I wrote why I love this blog, but I don’t think I did a good job then and just want to reiterate it here again. First of all, her post on 15 things you should give up to be happy remains my favorite blog post of all time. And the way she writes just really make me feel like I’m actually part of this collective spirit, filled with love and understanding. Give it a try.

You know… I didn’t wanna say this then because I might sound like a freak, but who cares. The woman behind this blog is one of the two women in this world that have inspired me enough that I would ask her to marry me without even knowing how she looks like. And that is, to an idealist, romantic fool like me, what love is all about. She connects with her readers so eloquently and compassionately, and has at times moved me beyond the capability of the human language. I feel like my soul resonates with hers. I feel her beautiful heart. I feel like I can communicate with her soul.

… I hope she doesn’t see this. Heh.

Well, I have to go to work soon. But let’s give up and live.