Seeking Appreciation

I’ve heard it said that “God loves you”. But what does that mean? It seems a bit abstract. Am I supposed to love this being back? How do I love an abstract entity? I can’t hug God or do any favors for him, right? And what if I find this world unpleasant, how do I love a creator of such miserable conditions? Why should I love something that’s only provided me with a piss-poor time?

Okay, some decent questions. Now let me ask you this: is there ANYTHING that you enjoy here on Earth?

Hm, well there are a lot of shows I’ve watched over the years that I’ve really enjoyed. I don’t particularly enjoy living life, but I do like watching it.

Okay, so you’re saying that your status as an embodied-being has at least provided you with an ability to appreciate shows about being human. Otherwise, if you were merely a conscious-cloud-of-gas, you probably couldn’t relate to human comedies or dramas, right? It’d be like watching a fish tank for example, it’d get real-old real-fast — whereas you can watch TV for hours everyday, year after year.

So if some entity created this world just to provide you with a means to enjoy shows about humans, that’s a pretty good gift, right? Maybe some aspects of the world were rushed and are not-so-perfect, but the storytelling-aspect is top-notch. So based on your enjoyment of shows/videos/movies/etc, you’d probably say it’s an impressive gift, correct?

I suppose if you put it that way, with all the shows and movies and stories I’ve enjoyed over the years, this world has been worth the price of admission. It’s like having a life-time pass to a cineplex or Netflix or something. I have to put up with a bunch of inconveniences, but the overall storytelling aspect is pretty great.

So with that in mind, imagine that God is the buddy that put all this together for you. It’s like he built the theater, the movie-projector, put in the seats, stocked the refreshments, wrote all the movies, had the actors do their stuff, and put in the special effects — in other words, he created a planet and everything on it just so you could enjoy an endless supply of entertainment. And all you ever have to do is sit there and enjoy it.

Are you telling me that you can’t find any love in your heart for a buddy like that? Again, maybe the seats are a little uncomfortable, maybe some people talk during the show, and maybe the popcorn could be warmer, but overall this is an impressive setup don’t you think? And correct me if I’m wrong, but you’ve done nothing to deserve this gift, it’s simply been given to you.

I mean yeah, I suppose I didn’t do anything to deserve it. But it’s certainly not perfect.

Well if someone gave you a sweater as a gift, would you wear it in the summer? Probably not — but if you did, you’d get too hot and probably hate the sweater after a few hours. So in other words, if you’re not enjoying a gift, it might be because you’re not using it correctly. Is it possible that the world is better than you think, and you’re just using it incorrectly?

Hm, I suppose that could be true because I find the whole thing kinda confusing. I honestly don’t know what I’m doing, so it’s very possible that I could be doing something wrong.

So let’s get back to your original questions. In terms of God loving you: all this was created for your enjoyment — why else is there a world filled with so much orchestrated drama just sitting in the middle of nowhere? God isn’t abstract if you think of him as the buddy that designed and manufactured all this. And in that sense, everything you interact with is just a piece of God — so yeah you hug God whenever you hug anything within this world. And if you find this place unpleasant, it’s likely that you’re doing something wrong, like wearing a sweater in the summer. At the very least, and as the most simplest set of instructions: just focus on the stuff you do like and your experience on Earth will vastly improve.

Anniversary Apology

I met my friend twenty years ago. We were just talking and I brought up the fact that all the good things I have in life stem from her presence. I paused and reflected on that statement. If true, it means that my gratefulness is woefully under-represented by my actions. In other words, I should be worshipping the ground she walks upon for all that she’s given me. If she did nothing else starting today, I’d still owe her for the last two decades.

She was my first and only girlfriend, my first and only best-friend, she taught me how tasty food could be. And after growing up in such a negative family environment, she showed me that “family” could be a term of endearment. She was the adoring and dutiful mother that our little baby needed. And of course my more cheerful outlook on life is plainly due to her guiding influence. Having been a pessimistic realist, I now believe in the goodness of life and all sorts of fanciful things.

Because of this, I have most certainly taken her presence for granted. She has carefully crafted the majority of meals I’ve eaten. I literally can’t enjoy food without her around. And most importantly, she not only listens to my inane philosophizing, but responds as though she cares. I have never met a better cook, or a more clever person, nor a better listener — she remembers everything. People, including babies and animals, tend to adore her.

What that initial statement made me realize, is how little gratitude I show toward such a vital component of my life. It’s sheer disrespect on my part, and I’m taken aback by it. I should be demonstrating my appreciation daily — hourly in fact! I asked whether she’d rather have a thank-you or an apology — I think her response is obvious. And so I wholeheartedly apologize, and repent for the horrible way in which I selfishly took her presence for granted.

But mere words are not enough, I must change my ways. In my future dealings with her, I must trust her opinion much more than I already do. What she thinks best, probably is. My patience towards her must be an endless well. When she speaks I must silence my own mind and simply listen. I must recognize the ingredient of love she mixes into every meal. Every bit of criticism that crosses my mind must be checked by the infinite delight she’s infused within my being.

I apologize to you, Michelle, for being so late in my understanding of the totality of your greatness. Happy Anniversary!

Garden 2.0

Upon eating the fruit, the illusion shattered. The act of eating from the tree of knowledge exposed the artificiality of the garden. From then on, it wasn’t enough. Staleness, sameness, suffocating — boredom became their reality.

And so they entered a new realm, an imperfect place. In this world, stressors of all varieties excite their senses. This manufactured habitat dazzles the duo with sights and sounds, thrilling with triumphs and disasters.

Captivated by this daydream, the pair enter in and out of lives, always uniting, yin intertwining yang. Offspring become ancestors become siblings become parents. A dramatic world of themes, a dance-floor of embracing essence, a backdrop of enduring love.

It was always about them, the only two that ever existed. Through their fondness, a world was born, a place to play within an endless playground. Every kiss and every tingle a new experience and a warm rekindling. A chase, a romp, a hide-and-seek, a fairytale for lovers.

Pure Wisdom

Wisdom is not the process of compiling and committing to a set of “correct” ideas. Ideas are just daydreams, figments formed from the mashing of words. Wisdom is the pristine processing of thought, no residue is left behind. When ideology can’t stick, only simple truths remain.

We can plainly observe our apelike nature as we stand upon seemingly solid rock. Underlying our simian structure, resides an awareness of life, a consciousness. There’s no label but that, a creature with a conscience, all else being fanciful fairytale. Faced with that simplicity, we witness others populating our surroundings.

Without categorization, without appraisal, they’re similarly struggling entities. Without imagined circumstances, competition is a concept lacking merit. Hands are for helping, not hurting, as we share this world in childlike delight. Wisdom manifests as the realization of innocence, our own, and that of all others.

Celestial Body

An excerpt from the fictional tales of Existential Romance.

As dawn begins the day, her love began my life.

They say it’s always darkest before the dawn, and so it was. Sitting quietly, arguing, warm blood dripping down my nose. Police at the door, he’s dead they said. Hospitals to funerals. Furious father throwing and yelling in a perpetual tantrum. It was a curious time of chaos — excited molecules smashing together before a big bang — then silence before the shockwave. What’s left are pieces to be picked up. But from these fragments entire worlds are born.

And so it was, a new life sprang from the old. My pieces far flung came to orbit her celestial body. Mere fragments solidified under the power of her pull. Like a baby’s first breath I gasped for life, experiencing the exhilaration of existence. Previously, I didn’t know what the big deal was, life is pain, life is hardship, life is cruelty, life is suffering personified — but no more, now I get it, life is laughter, life is surrender, life is companionship, life is love personified.

White hot with the power to save or destroy, I am ever at the mercy of her might. This world, a love story, spirit made flesh embracing and tasting life’s sweet treats. Through her wisdom I see the fun in living. Upon the altered view, a marriage of opposites springs forth the elixir of love’s first kiss, waking and breaking the spell, a curse coursing through veins once frozen now thawed. Sweet release, relieved of an angst, dark and dreary, weary no more.

Intoxicated by her understanding, now kneeling, I pray my appreciation. Let thy light shine upon my visage, glowing in thy grace. Thou art mine very sustenance. By thy blinding light I witness majesty and wonder. Love’s satisfying embrace, savory and sweet, without lack — in thy presence I know the goodness of life. A man, mere flesh ripped away to reveal the soul of truth: what two, but one. Infinite arithmetic of one plus one is one. Done.