Tuesday, March 30, 2004

"life is not a problem to solve, but a reality to be desired"

Thursday, March 25, 2004

"i'm new at this writing about 'deep thought' etc....but i'll give it a shot:

i guess i can call your entry on original thoughts a catalyst to what has
been a continuous stream of thoughts of my own--all in one day. One of the more
difficult questions i have asked myself is possibly the hardest and the easiest
question to answer. "Who am i really?" what type of person am i? i have been
observing people lately, and have noticed how many people change according to
who they are surrounded by. my immediate reaction is 'why can't they be
themselves around everyone? they are being fake.'
and then my hypocricy smacks me in the face.
i am the exact same way. i am my own chamelion--changing to fit in wherever i
am. i have tried to counteract this by telling myself that i am going to
start being myself around everyone. i will voice my opinions as i see fit. i am
going to go up to that person who is causing problems for everyone and tell it
like it is (excuse the cliche). i get pumped and excited about the "new me--the
real me" that is emerging, waiting anxiously to just burst out of me. "
then i go to school..."
Things are about to change even more. you are 2 months away from graduating High School, you are going to college soon, realize that your freshman year of college is the biggest change you undergo perhaps in your entire lifetime. you are going to be away from your parents, your current peers (which have taught you that popularity is essential but in all reality it is soon to be pointless since no one cares who you were in high school now that your at college), and the umbrella of safety you had living at home. Everything is going to change, your environment, what you knew as "home", its all going to change. now its you against the world, those beliefs that you held so dear throughout high school are going to change, now they are going to begin to get challenged where they may have been the social norm in your community. not everyone is going to believe how you believe and practice what you have preached in the past. it is easy not to be addicted to heroin when no one is offering it to you. in other words everything is about to be accessible. sex, drugs, drinking, doubt, etc. were probably easy to battle off because your bubble (or circle of friends) were not participating, or even exposed to such things. So what do you do? You have to figure out what you believe and then stand by it. You have to learn, grow, and adapt. you have to become YOU. It is in doubt that we learn faith, it is fear of the unknown that we truly find safety, it is in the acceptance of ignorance that we begin to find a thirst for knowledge, it is in life experiences that you find... YOU. the future is nothing to be scared of, it is beautiful, and full of moments one will never forget. do not be scared of failure, for it is there that we can easily learn from our mistakes, and help others not to stumble in this long journey we call life.

Wednesday, March 24, 2004

'Dear Stephen,

There's been a lot of talk about fated love and even love at first sight on
the Modesty Writer's Guild and that really got me thinking about what love is.
How do you distinguish between infatuation and true love? Both sentiments, you
feel viscerally down to the marrow in your bones, but which is which?

I crush really easily. I remember my very first one being in kindergarten,
however as I got older I started to have these consuming crushes that I easily
mistook for fated love. Those crushes where you can barely function and you
spend you days dreamily lying on your bed thinking of this person, looking at
their pictures, mapping out your future together, and making silly little
connections that deem your infatuation written in the stars. Along with this is that
anxious feeling that drives you insane--this is not love. It's more like mad
cow disease where your brain turns into mush. Oh how I've suffered.

So I'd venture to say that love is when you don't feel anxious and on the
edge of your sanity, but rather love is marked by poise and stability. You can
function and you just have this joy in your heart when you think about that
person, but it doesn't consume you. It doesn't have those extreme highs and lows
of infatuation; instead true love is quite linear because you are confident in
the sentiment. You know it's real and there's no need to map out your future,
constantly look at pictures, and make silly little connections because you
trust that your future together will map itself, no pictures are needed because
there's one in your heart, and you needn't make connections because it's
already there. I guess to conclude it means that once you lose that confidence and
you lose your poise, that love no longer exists and it's time to move on.

Isn't it amazing what wisdom comes with failed relationships? To add to the
fated love discussion, I really thought that I'd found that 2 years ago. The
way I got together with my ex was practically magnetic. Our hands just met
during a car ride back to the cabin after snowboarding, and we seemed to remain
attached at the hip during our summer together. I was born on his parents'
anniversary, he was born on my parents' anniversary. It all seemed so fantastic and
cosmically-aligned during the year and a half we were together, then reality
set in. I was ahead of him in terms of our career paths and he started to blame
me for his academic difficulties. I guess while our love seemed so seamless,
even indestructible at one point, our differences in priorities and even the
perceivably niggling problems I tried to shelf out of existence came back to
haunt me when the relationship fell to pieces. So while I'd like to believe in a
fated love, I realize that there are certain character-based requirements
that one should never ever yield. So for me, choice is the front-runnerâ€∫unless of
course my soulmate turns out to be perfect.'

your initial question is what is the difference between love and infatuation.
well infatuation i believe is all inclusive with some sort of mixture of chemistry and hormones. i believe that there is a stage in a relationship where infatuation is necessary, its the mindset that you can not help yourself but think of that other person, every thought, every feeling/emotion, every future plan, all includes them somewhere in the picture. i think those all consuming feeling can lead to love but do not necessarily include love. i think love is a choice. those butterflies will not always be there, waking up beside that other person will not always be the desired choice. when you are upset, when they hurt you, when they abuse your love, when they aren't there when they need you, when your unconditional love is suddenly tested... that is where love is prevalent. i have always thought of relationships like this;
months 1-3 is the infatuation stage (the other person can do no wrong)
months 4-7 are the breaking down of the walls, starting to see the flaws.
months 8-12 are who the other person really is, if they were putting on a show that entire time you start to see behind the scenes. how genuine is this person?
months 13-? if you do not think you could spend the rest of your life with this person then what are you doing here? if there are still doubts then you are leading that other person on and have some deep seeded issues with co-dependence, or fear of being alone. get some therapy and break up with that other person. please!(for both your sakes!)

who really knows what love is? it is like the wind, or GOD, we have never seen either but we know that they exist. it is the cause for many broken hearts and yet completeness. I think it is amazing that the english language is one of the only language's that has only one word for "love". I also think it is a word that is abused in our society. how can you tell your dad/mom/relative that you love them, and then within the hour say "i love your shoes", "or don't you just love that book?". are we not stating that this thought/feeling can be attributed to both someone we deeply care about and also a nice looking inanimate object? many songs have been written about this experience called love, but in the words of christian winterset "i love you means more if first said tomorrow." in other words don't throw the phrase i love you around haphazardly. wait until you have seen behind the scenes, and they have truly proven that they are not a mere actor/actress. for if "all the world is a stage", then love is the inspiration for each and every individual performance.

Tuesday, March 23, 2004

how amazing to meet new people.
to hear new ideas, new passions, new loves.
sometimes i think im alone in thought. but i wonder now when the day of the last original thought was. every thought that i conjure has probably been thought many centuries before. thoughts of love and war, breaking hearts and getting heartbroken, of philosphys and theologies, etc. the beautiful thing is talking with others and hearing things that they have learned in their lifetimes which is proabably not an original thought but, it is an original thought to me. I just learned that St. Patrick was not from Ireland after all but from Whales, he was taken into slavery and escaped several times. amazing. he converted Whales and Ireland to Christianity, (therefore converting pagans whose symbol was the snake) and that is why it has been said that St. Patrick "drove the snakes out of Ireland." It was a metaphor, but a beautiful symbol.
what are some of your original thoughts, or what have you hypothosized lately?
write me... stephen@stephenchristian.us

i have been dealing alot with materialism lately so im sure that is the subject of an upcoming blog. (also Irmo, a parrot shirt, and a skating rink... i have not forgotten you friends.)
new favorite movie,
endless sunshine of the spotless mind.
i dont know how much to elaborate on since many of you have yet to see it. so in about a month i will post more on this topic but until then. "OK"

Friday, March 12, 2004

Life is so sudden, and then its gone. Sometimes the only one I have to hold on to permanently is not people at all, but memories of those people.

Scott Silcox, 5th grade, Mrs. Adams. He was more hyperactive than I. He was shorter than I, we got along because no one else got along with us, we were always in trouble together. I remember we both liked the digital underground, and he showed me that sitting in the back of the bus was to the advantage for boys like us. I moved to Florida shortly after 5th grade, never heard or saw him again.

David Koontz, we were both 13 years old, he lived outside the city limits, he lived in a trailer, but his home was like an empire of activity. We built forts, burnt He-Men in epic battles, and even swear to this day that skeletor almost came out of the fire at us. We talked of girls as if we knew what we were talking about. We would go camping, and he taught me about the outdoors, and still to this day those were some of my favorite memories. He pursued art, then girls and mind altering substances, we have lost contact altogether. Last I heard he was a trace DJ in Orlando somewhere.

Heath Burgett, 7-10th grade, taught me to sing, or at least harmonize because his voice was so incredible. He was the envy because I never felt I could match up, or even come close. He seemed to have it all. While playing capture the flag we swear to this day that we saw a moving object way up in the sky go very slow... then turn do a 180 quite quickly, then turn back around and soar past us so quick, we believed in UFO's, at least for the next week. He was a good friend, and I had a crush on his older sister. He taught me that life isn't about what you do or look like, its who you are. I didn't believe him. He went on to pursue music getting signed on Interscope, I went off to college. We talk occasionally.

John Beward, 11th grade, He was a certified Polk County, Florida REDNECK, and being punk rock it was never meant to work out we would be friends. Working at Pizza Hut has a way of humbling people and also bringing them together for a common task, spending countless weekends making fast food. We became good friends after he put his dip into my dad's x-boss's barbecue pizza. He was a little more vengeful than I, and he taught me that I shouldn't let people walk on me. He also taught me that there is a whole culture underneath a hood, and there's nothing a little ducktape couldn't fix. He joined the military, got married and we lost contact for several years.

Melissa, Junior-Senior in College. I broke up her engagement to some pansy, sure I thought she was attractive and an amazing artist but even more attractive is the fact that I could make her see that there are better people out there than that loser. Call me a home wrecker but I prefer a quasi-super hero with an overactive savior complex. We dated, it didn't work out on a theological level. She taught me that who oneself is makes all the difference in the world, and that no matter how much we want to change the other person in our romantic lives the essence of human beings should be to stay true to oneself. She was an amazing artist and once drew me a picture of Marilyn Monroe that must have taken HOURS! Last I heard she was engaged to another guy who was "amazing" and treated her "soooo well". She called me James (after the fad of James Dean movies I liked so much at the time.), I called her dizzy in return. I have no idea where in this world she is, and most likely will never see her again.

Its amazing how that we are the composite of everyone we have ever met. You are intertwined with people. The belief system you have... you did not come up with it, someone told you about it. You chose to accept it. Other ideas you have rejected. I believe in nature and nurture, but in some context if we were left alone our entire lives what would we believe? Nurture by parents, peers, mentors, and even people we play teach and speak into our lives more than we may ever admit or think about.

How have you spoken into others lives? Has it positive or negative? Realize that you are not "an island unto yourself" but you effect your immediate surroundings, and everyone you come in contact with... either positive or negative.