Don’t Stop

If, at a certain point in life, you decide that this is your lot in life and that you are happy where you are to let the river flow, pushing you along to where it may lead. STOP! The moment you make that decision, conscientiously or unknowingly, you have effectively stopped living and started aging.

Be grateful for what you have now considering that billions in the world do not even have what you may consider basic rights of life. Be content and enjoy your relationships like you will not have them tomorrow. But never, ever stop striving to be better than what you are now.

There are no blueprints for an average citizen. There is no ideal of a middle class folk. There is no allocated lot nor any man-designed life for you to live. God gave us, at a great cost to His Son, free will. Live it and use it to think, strain that free will to ponder, squeeze your God given life to strive on for the best. For there is no limit set by anyone else except that which you think it is your limit.

For once you stop striving, you stop moving. Once we stop moving, we stop living.

Man with four sons, Part IV

The man, said of this to his fourth son,

“Son, I do not know now what kind of man you will be in the future. Nor do I know who you will meet, what you will do and what decisions you will make that will bring you happiness

This I do know now. You have all you need to achieve whatever you set your mind to. The world is open to your searching mind and heart. Let them search uninhibited by fear or worry. Go out and look for like-minded friends who will join you in your quest but do not be bind down by their dreams. Find out your strength, work it into your livelihood so that you excel in it. Enjoy your work and you never will work another day of your life.”

People Change

One of my favorite duet songs by 周杰伦 (Jay Chou) is 珊瑚海 (Coral Sea). In it, he describes how a sand sculpture, once destroyed, can never be put back to be the same. Even if it is rebuilt and the sand re-used, the sand sculpture, be it a castle, a model or a tower is not the same as it was before. Research have shown that, once every 7 years, every single cell in our skeleton is replaced. Are we, thus the same person, as we were 7 years ago, if every single part of our body has been replaced?

People change over time. However, it is said that “First impressions last forever” and, while not really forever, impressions are hard to modify. Just as a child’s first contact with any issue or subject shapes his or her basis of understanding for that topic, so does first impressions forms the core of our understanding and attitude towards particular persons. Caught in a bad moment, we can dismiss a person easily as shoddy or careless and it may ruin our relationship with him or her for quite a while.

Unknowingly, we put people in boxes like sorted objects and label them for easy reference. “Lazy”, “Troublesome”, “Sexy”, “Workaholic”, etc… In objectifying them, we no longer see them as people. “Leadership and Self-Deception”, a book by the Arbinger Institute has taught me that in objectifying people, we see them as obstacles or resources to be overcome or used. We see them as less relevant, less important and less real than us when in fact, each of them live a full complex life just like me. The worst of these is that my resistant to see them as people forces them to react exactly in the way which only serves to confirm my treatment of them.

People are people and they change. Even in Harry Dresden‘s world where true names have power, people’s true name are hard to master because they change with time as the nature of the person changes with time. So,in looking at these issues, I realize at least two truths. Firstly, I can change and I change no matter I like it or not. The choice is what kind of person do I want to be in 7 years time when all of my cells are replaced one by one. Secondly, the people around me are also changing and they do not stay the same. Essentially, I believe that they all want to do good, excel in their chosen profession and live a good life. While in any human system, as a leader, friend and subordinate, it is in my power to see them as who they want to be and help them realize that dream. It is more often that they are limited by ability than by choice in making mistakes as they do.

Man with four sons, Part III

He said of this to his third,

“My third, my joyful star. The one whom greets me cheerfully every morning with a big smile and bright voice. Ever so sensible, you are usually the first to point out things, even when I would rather they be hidden. You have also shown how quick your mind is from your daily chores as you figure them out, even faster than your elder brothers at times!

“You need to know, that there is a time to speak and there is a time to be still. For though some things are good, they are not good to be done at all times. There is virtue in waiting and timing plays an important role in all that we do. Sometimes, timing alone determines the successes and failures of a man. Thus, wait your turn and bid your time. For you will be rewarded and your efforts will be well received.”

Man with four sons, Part II

Then he said this to his second,

“My dearest second, you make me smile. For you are the most sensible one. You read my mind and obey my will, even when at times when I don’t say them out. Helpfulness and willingness, you reach out to those in need without a thought. First to smile and first to join in the fun, you nevertheless are one who will stay back to clear up.

Still my son, there could be more. You must understand this to be more. That not always fruits come from labour, sometimes God make you wonder. There will be times when things seem unfair. When the whole world seems to be conspiring against you. Take note, my boy, that God IS fair. It is just not His time to be so yet. So let go of it when things seems wrong, for in the end it balances all. Live your life the best you can be, and let Him take care of the rest.

Man with four sons, Part I

There once was a man with four sons. Each of them, he loves differently, and each loves him in their own ways. Nevertheless, loves them he does. Each of them brings him pride and yet, each of them causes him heartache in their time.

To his eldest son, he says,

“Oldest of my pride, you are like my morning sun. When you came into this world, you were my light for you bring joy and wonder into my world again. Each day looks different because of your smile, your cry and your voice. Much as I spend each of my days with you, you seem to grow up without my noticing. Quick in the mind and speech, you never cease to amaze me when you spring a new ideas into my life.

Yet, a focus you lack. Amidst all the intellect and spark, you burst in all direction but yet none at all. One day, I pray you will find the one that holds your purpose in your life. Burn yourself in it and keep at it. With your talent and your strength, you can do much, but you need to keep at it. Focus and plunge on. Be fearless and do not give up.”

 

(I’ve missed out two weeks of posts, but I’m glad to say I have not cease reading. Simply that i need more time to time, instead of just writing.)

Life examined

Not all things written or said are wise, neither are all things wise written or said. Thus, I would rather write more foolish stuff in the hope of hitting something wise.

What is a life not ponder upon? “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect,”- 1 Peter 3:15 Even for faith, we should always seek to understand the truth as we know it and thus be able to explain it clearly. For the ones with no declared faith, Socrates would say, “the greatest good of a man is daily to converse about virtue, and all that concerning which you hear me examining myself and others, and that the life which is unexamined is not worth living

No matter what your beliefs may be, I wish for you to be always curious and open-minded. To be always asking questions of yourselves and others. To listen before you judge and to hear before you speak. To close off one’s mind before the argument is made is to escape into one’s own world and a sign that your world may not be as accurately portrayed as you may believe.

We are all pilgrims in this world of the unknowns. There is no loss in discussing our individual experiences that we may learn from it. The only loss is when one does not participate in the discussion. Join in the discussion and explore, for at the most you will learn where not to go.