Sunday, February 19, 2012

Now

I am finding less and less that it is important to know where I came from or where I will go.  All I want to fully understand is that I am here now and everywhere always.  Identifying what the "push" is that encourages good behavior or locating the "pull" that rewards virtuous thoughts is irrelevant.  "To be or not to be?"--that is NOT the question.  Nikos Kazantzakis said, "I hope for nothing. I fear nothing.  I am free."

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Working short story-I, II, III

ONE

Wisdom is seldom found in a cardboard box.  But such was the package that delivered nourishment for my soul during a crisp autumn afternoon.  Red and yellow maple leaves littered the cement courtyard and a whistling of wind payed little notice to a small yet persistent ”eow”.

As I shut the front door to the inner staircase hallway, the animal wrestled anxiously inside its temporary shelter.  I unlatched the cover and Pandora’s box opened with a flurry of liberation and fear.  The cat scurried to a nearby vase that filled the hallway corner like a reject five-year-old left fielder does on a tea-ball field.

The cat seemed to be adjusting fine.  I walked upstairs to make a sandwich, confident that he would acclimate at a pace he saw fit.  The poor animal had been abandoned by his mother and subsequently stored in prison like conditions at a well meaning but underfinanced and overcrowded animal shelter. 

I would eat my salami and havarti and he could come out and take a self-guided tour of the home when he wished.  I chomped on the creamy cheese and peppery meat regretting the fact that I had only bought cheap wheat bread instead of sourdough. 

Work, study, and the meaning of life were on pause as I scrambled around the apartment scanning for loose change and rubber bands.  I began to question the adoption when at last a bundle of protruding whiskers and an inquisitive nose poked threw the doorframe.

“Hey, welcome!” I said.  With that he ran back down the stairs to the established outpost where it would take another twenty minutes for him to regain his courage.  The second emergence into the upstairs involved a direct slinking course to my bed.  He was quickly claiming territory.

I knew that the only appropriate way to establish a relationship with another species was to let him sniff me.  I sprawled out onto the floor beside my bed and outstretched my hand in a relaxed manner.  Two steps forward, one step back.  This was the name of the game.  Steps for cats are not very large so the game lasted for quite a while until at last we made contact.  Images of Michelangelo’s Sistine chapel, or better yet E.T., flashed through my head as his moist little nose sniffed my index finger.  The bonding was slow but sure and eventually he became trusting enough to purr and sit on my arm for the rest of the night.



TWO

A couple weeks went by as we became familiar with one another’s routines and idiosyncrasies.

I made sure that he always had a good paw massage and back rub and he ensured that I always had company in the bathroom during my morning shower.  The cat would sit upright and attentive on the toilet as I scrubbed and sang “Jesu, Joy of man’s desiring”.

I realized that he was incredibly independent, strong willed and more inquisitive than my family’s dog in the past.  If I spoke to the cat while reading, he would process the statements.  If I made some noise in the kitchen, he would investigate and take notes.  During his second weekend in the apartment he decided to speak without restraint while I toasted hoagies for French dip.

            I think it’s time I received a proper name.
            You can talk?
            Don’t be silly.  Of course I can talk.
            Um…
            No, you aren't crazy.  You’re crazy for talking to an animal that never responds.  And please don’t use a baby voice to address me anymore.  It’s incredibly patronizing.
            Okay.  What’s wrong with your legal name?
            It’s a bit hackneyed, I must admit.
            How about Tanner?  I see you sitting in the sun every day enjoying the rays.
            Cute, but I knew a Tanner in the shelter.  He was a tiny kitten of mellow temperament that was adopted in a manner of minutes after being rescued.  A good kid, but I don’t want to be named Tanner 2.
            I understand.  How about Kai?  That’s a cute name.
            What does that mean?
            It means “ocean” in Japanese.
            We live in Spokane, Washington.  And I’m not Japanese…
            Neither am I, okay.  I think you deserve something historic or academic.
            That sounds fine to me.
            How about Socrates? You seem to lead a contemplative, inquisitive, and truth seeking life from what I have seen of you in the past two weeks.  The name fits you well.  Do you know who Socrates was?
            Of course. I feel honored. But first, do a dirty word rime check.
            What do you mean?
            Do a check to see what people could do with my name if they wanted to make fun of me.  Every parent should do this when they pick out a name for their newborn child.  Future kids on the playground will be relentless so it’s important to be prepared.  For example: Ray is gay, or Tommy has a small salami.
            Um…….Socrates pisses antifreeze.
            I think the name will be fine.  I predict other knick names will inevitably ensue such as Socs, Soxy and Buddy, but such is life.
            Well honestly, I can’t see myself scolding an intellectual heavy weight like Socrates.
            Socs, get down from the counter!—has a more appropriate ring to it.
            I agree.
Socrates nodded in self-approval and tilted his nose up towards the ceiling with questioning eyes as if he was remembering to do something.
            “Well, is that it?” he asked.
            You mean naming you?  Yeah I guess.
            Great.  If you don’t mind, I’m going to take my afternoon nap now.  Your hoagies are burning by the way.
He strolled back into the bedroom to find a patch of sunlit covers where the fifth nap of the day awaited him.

THREE

Socrates was adopted during a time of financial and vocational uncertainty in my life.  In the grand scope of the history of the world, this fact is hardly worth mentioning, however, at that time my job search following graduation from college was deflating my sense of self-worth.  I began to attack the very principles that gave me a solid university education.

One day I climbed the stairs to my apartment after a round of resume handoffs at local hotels.  Few positions were open for hire and if they were, then I was going to take them out of desperation. Socratess greeted me like always with tail up and ears perky as I walked into the living room somber and quiet.

I bent down and gave him a tickle behind the ears.
            Hi buddy.
            Hello sir. 
            What are you doing?
            I was just watching the birds outside.
            I see you do that a lot.  Don’t you ever get bored sitting on the bike handles for hours?
            No, not really.  It’s not like I do this full-time.  Watching the feathered creatures is relaxing for my mind since I spend most of the day reading and thinking.  I normally sit on the table.
            Yeah, I’ve noticed a few times that my computer was warm after I had been away for a while.
            I figured you wouldn’t mind.  All your books are hard to access since you store them up on the top shelf of your bedroom closet.
            I didn’t know you were trying to read them.  From now on just let me know in the morning and I can bring a couple down for you.
            It’s no big deal.  Most of the books are too stiff and heavy for me to read anyway.  It’s difficult to turn the pages.  That’s why I tend to use your Mac—or your girlfriend’s Mac that you have borrowed for the past nine months I mean.
            Do you ever have trouble using the keys or the mouse?
            Mice are not a problem.  Actually, computer mouse plural is “mouses”. But anyway, no.  However, I am running into a lot of trouble when it comes to choosing articles and books to read online.  There is so much information on the net.  You ran into a similar problem when shopping for my cat food and kitty litter for the first time.  Salmon or tuna? Rice or wheat? Scented or non-scented?  The fear of choosing an article that wastes my time is frustrating.  What’s worse is that while I am reading something, I can’t help but think about other great potential pieces that I am missing out on.  This problem of choice is disabling for my psyche.
            Searching for capital “t” truth will do that to you.  Do you ever finish reading a passage and then ask yourself, “what the hell did I just read?”
            Yes, frequently.  It takes practice to forge the mind into a lean and mean processing machine.  My one wish in life is to remember everything I read.  I would be the smartest animal on the planet.  Think about the smartest people you know.  They tend to be people with outstanding memories.
            Is there a way to really increase one’s memory significantly do you think?
            I’m not a neuroscientist, but I do know that the people who intellectually captivate me are individuals who are perpetually engaged in readings, writings, discussions and their work.  Certain brainiacs will have a higher propensity to remember crazy details over others, but the best you can do is read, write, converse, read, write, converse.
            Why is writing so important for memory retention do you think?
            Writing or speaking is necessary to test your analytical skills and gage how well you can process and critique the information you consumed by reading.  Think back to all the facts and arguments you had stored in your head during college.  Now your brain is atrophying even with weekly readings.  You have no one to share new ideas with.  Contemplating on your own is great but you have to write or blog or converse with a coffee shop addict in order to keep your intellect in shape.  Someone else has to check the veracity and logical strength of your arguments. 
            I hate being out of school.  I studied hard for four years only to find a shitty job market and no one who understands my predicament.
            I understand your frustration.
            Why the hell did I study so hard?  I should have majored in business.
            First, I know plenty of business majors who can’t land jobs except the ones with rich uncles or dads.  When you ask someone how they got their job and they can’t give you a solid reason, then most likely it was a hand out.  Second, no degree is immune to the recession.  Maybe engineering, computer science, math, accounting, and education majors were able to get jobs, but you suck at math and you were never meant to take a final in finger painting.  Attempting to interpret Mao Zedong’s political theory is more up your alley.
            You read my paper from junior year?
            If you want to call it a paper…  It’s dog crap.  The kind you step in and can’t get off your foot and then you walk inside your home and it gets on the white carpet and—
            Okay!
            Just please don’t stop reading in your free time.  You don’t need to see the immediate utilitarian effect in reading to know that it is valuable.  Maybe you won’t land a better job after reading Steinbeck or Roth, but you should stimulate your mind and spirit nonetheless.
            That’s what I did at my university for the past four years already.  I thought I was getting an education of mind and heart.  That was the school’s slogan. I believed that my education was going to help me realize my vocation.  I never wanted to make lots of money or be “successful” as the debauched world sees the word.
            Nor should you now, but there is a reason why institutionalized youth groups suck.  A school can’t enlighten you to your vocation, if there is even such a thing.  You are likely capable of doing many great and interesting jobs that you aren’t even aware of yet.  Political science, sociology, psychology--all these B.A.s are just different labels for liberal studies.  Determining your future will be a messy and extremely personal experience that only you can uncover.  YOU have to carve out your own life aggressively.    
            But I promised myself that I would get a solid job right after graduation and that I wouldn’t be working part time in a coffee shop like so many other social studies and humanities students do.  I did the internships, classes, and extra curricular activites.
            Well, you failed didn’t you.
            Excuse me?
            You didn’t complete your expectations.  So all you can do now is move on.  Sure, this is looking to be the most unhappy time in your life, but you will overcome it.  You are treating your job search like a full-time job and are applying to jobs in and out of your comfort zone while looking at positions above, next to and below your level of experience.  You shouldn’t be afraid of failure.  You should only be afraid of mediocrity.  However, you will never be trapped in mediocrity.  It isn’t part of your essence.
            I feel as though I’m going to be in a mediocre position now since I’ve graduated.
            You are only living a mediocre life if you think you are.  Make a plan and transcend your circumstances.  Some people will let the dog poop on their shoe ruin their whole day.  Just see it as shit that happens and know that you were meant for greater things.  This time is a big ass speed bump but it will only help you appreciate good things to a greater extent in the future.  You should keep searching like you should keep reading.  Search out experience.  An insatiable appetite for experiencing new stories and ideas will push your intellect and spirit into new states of being every day.  You can then never be stuck in mediocrity.  I think you spent too much time reading and not enough time watching the birds. 
            Thanks bud.  I think I’m going to go for a run.  I need to relax a bit.
            Sure. When you come back you should join me at the window and I’ll introduce you to my chirping friends.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

iFlake: The idiocy of smart phones

Smart phones are not only establishing themselves as a perceived necessity in the realm of financial transactions, restaurant ratings, and driving directions, but they risk spoiling human relationships as well.

We cannot say that all technology is good.  Much to the bewilderment of youth today, I don’t believe that everyone needs a smart phone.  In fact, I believe most people would do well without them.  These devices bog down the spirit and distract the mind. 

Many of you will undoubtedly object at this point and say that you have many uses for your device and that you use it with tactful temperance and grace.  I don’t believe you. 

Many people say they need smart phones, but far too often they have simply bought into lies that by tapping and staring at a handheld device during every minute of free time and stolen time, they will advance their self worth.

I support the advances in technology that have allowed for wide spread access and dissemination of human knowledge and creativity throughout the world thanks to the Internet, but do people really need to be plugged in all the time? 

Have you ever had a conversation with someone and failed to capture their undivided attention as they tapped and dragged away with eyes diverted?  It’s worse than trying to teach an ADHD eight-year-old boy his multiplication tables.  At least the boy was born with the condition.  The person across from you is just being rude.  Were you ever that person tapping and swiping away instead of listening to your friend?  How absurd.

If smart phones are so smart, then why are people so horrible at communicating these days?  My former roommate is completely guilty of this, much to my embarrassment. Mobile email allows us to receive and send messages instantaneously. Although, think about that time you sent out an email or text to a friend and didn’t hear back for days or weeks.  Think about that time you received an email or text and didn’t reply for days or weeks.  Just plain silly.

I believe that mobile technology has two influential properties worth noting.  One, it allows people to expand their access to information in a transformative way.  Autodidacts should be coming out of the woodwork now!  However, the negative side of this technology is that humans become worse at communicating through genuine, relationship building avenues. 

Shooting a text to say “hey! ^-^ lol. sorry--I’m not gonna make it tonight.” 40 minutes after you had planned to meet a friend for dinner, is truly pathetic.  In the olden days, if Jimmy told Billy that they were going to meet on the corner of 5th and Market street at noon, then the agreement was expected to be fulfilled.  If Billy didn’t show after 30 minutes, then Jimmy would get worried or cancel the arrangement and flag Billy as a flake.  Now, everyone and their mother get endless freebies.  There is no excuse anymore for so much tardiness or canceled arrangements.

“iFlake” is the new term that defines the younger generation. 

While people have mobile apps for calendars, directions, business directories, traffic information and alarms, proper communication between individuals is becoming more mobile too, but in a damaging way.  Instead of people having longer threads of substantive conversations, mobile devices have forced people to bark out short, trite bits of communication that are void of emotions, body language, and socio-psychological nuances that nurture genuine relationships and build trust.

Sending out a text may be faster than calling your friend, but the time spent distracted from other tasks or conversations means your communication channels and mental focus are fragmented and weakened.  Breadth of communication may have increased, but social efficiency is thrown to the wayside.

Using a touch screen to find a burger joint and check the score of the big game in five seconds is fantastic, but loses any advantage in the scope of a human life if it means that we are becoming seduced into a realm of self-centered, social retardation.

While you are busy checking the weather report on your iPhone, I just opened up the window and decided to put on a sweater.

Monday, January 30, 2012

2011 Film List

My time is limited on this planet.  My memories may fade away like poppies being swept abroad by the wind, but in the mean time, I seek to form a wake of artistic experience.  Maybe the wake forms me.  Experiencing emotions and perspectives vicariously through film are essential to this process.  Here is my film list of 2011.

Name                                           Director                              Year


December 2011
Portlandia: Season 1               Jonathan Krisel                       2010
Monsters                                 Gareth Edwards                     2010
Tucker and Dale vs Evil           Eli Craig                                   2010
Precious                                  Lee Daniels                             2009   
American History X                 Tony Kaye                               1998
Rambo III                                  Peter MacDonald                     1988
Rambo: First Blood Part II        George Cosmatos                   1985
First Blood                               Ted Kotcheff                           1982
Crazy Stupid Love                  Glenn Ficarra                          2011
Cowboys and Aliens              Jon Favreau                            2011
Ghosts of Girlfriends Past      Mark Waters                            2009
The Great Dictator                   Charles Chaplin                       1940
Black Swan                             Darren Aronofsky                   2010
Home Alone                             Chris Columbus                       1990
How the Grinch Stole Christmas   Ron Howard                     2000
The Santa Clause                    John Pasquin                           1994
Fun with Dick and Jane           Dean Parisot                            2005

November 2011
Rudolph’s Shiny New Year     Jules Bass                              1976
Immortals                                 Tarsem Singh                          2011
X-Men: First Class                   Matthew Vaughn                    2011
Horrible Bosses                      Seth Gordon                            2011
X-Men Origins: Wolverine       Gavin Hood                             2009

October 2011
Transcendent Man                  Robert Ptolemy                        2009
Captain America                      Joe Johnston                           2011
Green Zone                             Paul Greengrass                     2010
Money and Honey                   Lee Ching-Hui                          2011
Gypsy                                     Martin Sulik                              2011
Los Viejos                               Martin Boulocq                        2011

July 2011
The Fighter                             
Tron: Legacy                           Joseph Kosinski                      2010
Battle: Los Angeles                 Jonathan Liebesman               2011
Tron                                         Steven Lisberger                    1982
Annie Hall                                Woody Allen                            1977
The Graduate                          Mike Nichols                            1967
True Grit                                  Ethan Coen                              2010
The Essential Charlie Chaplin Vol I                                          1914
Lost In Translation                   Sofia Coppola                          2003
The English Patient                  Anthony Minghella                   1996
Grand Canyon                         Lawrence Kasdan                  1991
The Expendables                    Sylvester Stallone                   2010

June 2011
9                                              Shane Acker                           2009
Monsieur Verdoux                  Charlie Chaplin                        1947
I Love You Man                       John Hamburg             2009
Limelight                                  Charlie Chaplin                        1952
City Lights                               Charlie Chaplin                        1931
Pi                                             Darren Aronofsky                   1998
To Live                                    Zhang Yimou                           1994
The Triplets of Belleville          Sylvian Chomet                       2003
Oldboy                                     Chan Wook Park                      2003
Dead Man Walking                   Tim Robbins                             1995
House of Flying Daggers        Yimou Zhang                           2004

May 2011
The Circus                               Charlie Chaplin                        1928
The Village Barbershop          Chris Ford                               2008
Requiem for a Dream              Darren Aronofsky                   2000
The Kid                                    Charlie Chaplin                        1921
Secretary                                Steven Shainberg                   2002
Kick-Ass                                 Matthew Vaughn                    2010
3:10 to Yuma                           James Mangold                       2007
How to Train Your Dragon      Chris Sanders                         2010

April 2011
The Prestige                            Christopher Nolan                   2006
Win Win                                   Thomas McCarthy                   2011
The Joneses                           Derrick Borte                           2009
Mary and Max                         Adam Elliot                               2008
Hot Tub Time Machine Steve Pink                               2010

March 2011
Serenity                                   Josh Whedon                          2005
Daybreakers                           Michael and Peter Spierig        2009
$9.99                                       Tatia Rosenthal                       2008
Grownups                               Dennis Dugan                          2011

February 2011
Predators                                Nimrod Antal                            2010
2001: A Space Odyssey        Stanley Kubrik                         1968
Amelie                                     Jean-Pierre Jeunet                  2001
The Karate Kid                        Harold Zwart                           2010
Legendary                               Mel Damsky                             2010
The Emperor’s Club                 Michael Hoffman                     2002

January 2011
Wild Wild West                        Bary Sonnenfield                    1999
The Outsiders                         Francis Coppola                      1983
Creation                                   Jon Amiel                                 2009
An Education                           Lone Scherfig                         2009
Dirty, Rotton Scoundrels         Frank Oz                                 1988
Ushpizin                                  Giddi Dar                                 2004
Citizen Kane                            Orson Welles                          1941
Milk                                          Gus Van Sant                         2008
Flipped                         Rob Reiner                              2010
Fracture                                  Gregory Hoblit                         2007
The Hurt Locker                      Kathryn Bigelow                     2008

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Do you like your Kimchi soggy or crispy? – Part II

Here are half tailed yet intuitive attempts to answer some of the most pressing questions of our time (In Korea):

Why do you have to throw dirty toilet paper into a wastebasket instead of flushing it down the toilet?
            Two possible answers: (1) The sewage system is not equipped to handle chili pepper tainted poo paper and will clog. (2) Koreans don’t use toilet paper after going potty because they think the “wiping” process is unclean.

Why do Ajushis (old men) always hack up phlegm?
            Visit Seoul for at least a week and you will feel as they do.  Corey had a horrible soar throat and phlegm problem when he first arrived.  One hike in a mountain outside the city and you can feel the difference in air quality.  I may have to send my friend a bottle of clean Pacific Northwest air.

Why is it appropriate to cover one's mouth while laughing but no one cares to do so while sneezing or coughing?
            I have not figured this contradiction out yet. 

Why do Koreans like Spam so much?
            Brands can take on a new form when they are presented in a foreign market.  Dunkin' Donuts in Korea is a nice coffee and pastry establishment that rivals Starbucks.  Last time I saw a Dunkin' Donuts in the states, it was falling apart and struggling to sell old piles of sugar and bitter coffee.  I have learned that American’s have great meat varieties to choose from.  Koreans like to stick with chicken anuses, pork sausage, pig feet, ugly looking fish, and canned meat.  Black boar from Juju Island is delicious though.

Why are Ajummas (old ladies) so mean on the subway?
            Decades of patriarchal post-war reconstruction would turn you into a hardened bitch too.  If they wanna wear socks with sandals, then they are gonna do it.  Too many meals of bibimbab sans vegetables stunted their growth so the least people can do is let them be first on the subway car.  

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookies and Buddhist Monks

Anyone who has spoken to my friend recently about religion will not walk away feeling good about themselves.  Perhaps he has read too much Nietzche recently or perhaps the absence of my warm fur and soothing purs has spiked his blood pressure.  I suspect that his education at Whitworth might have something to do with his jaded worldview.  Four years of faith journeying intertwined with messages about vocation and God and intellectual dedication to higher education led him to a bad job market, unanswered prayers and absolutely no sign or hint into whether his questions were remotely valid.  Simply put, whatever the material, intellectual or spiritual cause, he is not a fan of organized religion or the Christian faith.

However, today was a counterweight for those feelings of animosity and disgust....

For a Sunday break from the 빨리빨리빨리 (quick, quick, quick!!) lifestyle of Seoul, Corey planned on making a short hike up Mt. Umyeonsan in the Gangnam area.  Illogical and inaccurate directions from Korea's tourism website led him to an ominous, prison-esque looking Supreme Court building instead.  


Instead of asking for directions through survival Korean, Corey saw a hill hugging the city about one mile away and walked in the opposite direction in hopes of finding Mt. Umyeonsan.  He did not.  On the way was a McDonalds with a drive thru (the only fast food drive thru that he had seen in the past five months).  What would Koreans think of City USA where any given street has at least 10 fast food establishments within a quarter mile stretch?



The Seoul Arts Center sat at the base of the hill and looked more like a military nuclear research facility rather than a beacon of aesthetic treasures.


Finding a path to ascend up the hill was incredibly easy.  The path was dusty and steep but provided many rest points which came in handy.  Corey forgot his trekking shoes at the gym and relied only on his casual Pumas while families passed bye with gortex pants and hiking sticks.  As always, fitness stations were provided so that one could exercise obscure body parts.  Let's work those nautical muscles!


After finding a path up the hill and climbing for 30 minutes or so, Corey took a short video of what he saw.




At this time, he could sense the presence of a curious onlooker.  This was a common occurrence.  Normally an adorable child would squawk, "Hello! Where you from?" and then gallop away giggling, or an elderly veteran would attempt to practice their indecipherable English that they learned back in the Korean war.  However, today the person was a Buddhist monk named Stone.

In Korean he referred to himself as 석상 (Seoksang).  To others, he was referred to as Seoksang Sunim (Monk Seoksang).  After Corey informed Stone that his name in English would be Peter, a name having parallel spiritual meaning in Christianity, Stone clarified the translation and stated through humility that Pedro meant a "large rock" that weighed many kilograms whereas Seoksang was a "small rock or pebble" that one could hold in the palm of their hand.  Corey also learned that his name in Korean, 코리 (Kori), was most similar to the word 고리 (Gori) which meant "ring".

Introductory pleasantries like name, age, occupation, country of origin and salary (yes salary) were made at first and Corey learned that the Seoul Arts Center was indeed used for performing arts like opera, plays, and traditional Korean dances. Stone then invited Corey to his home for tea and conversation at the bottom of the hill.  The temple was called Daesung Temple.



Stone gave Corey an introduction to Korean Buddhist practices with a genuine, soothing, and rythmic voice.  Together they took off their shoes and hats and bowed three times in front of three Buddha statues.  Explanations were given of what each statue represented.  Prayers for lost souls in the afterlife, prayers for struggling or hurt souls in this life, and prayers for God's wisdom and love.

Corey and Stone then exited the temple and walked to the adjacent courtyard which can be seen at the right of the photo above.  A friendly, white dog greeted them in the courtyard. It resembled a smaller, less furry husky and had a name which translated into "Working together".  Stone then made up almond tea (with a hot water machine and instant tea packets) using the upmost graceful dexterity.  Extra crispy chocolate chip cookies accompanied the tea drinking as both men discussed religion, philosophy, Jesus, and Buddha.  These were some of the things that Stone said:

I can sense a small but strong, glowing flame inside of you.  That is a good thing.

Buddha said similar things to Jesus Christ.

Buddha taught us that belief is not only important.  How we live is important.

I have read the Good News Bible four times and understood the message better every time.

Jesus Christ was right.

It is important and good to respect other religions.  All belief is holy.  All religions are holy because there is some belief in each of them.

Right now you are like a small green apple.  Your wisdom is not mature.  It will take time to grow but be patient and when you are 30 or 40 or 50 you will understand more.

Meditation will empower your daily life.  Meditate everyday and you will see that your wisdom grows.  Meditating once is like a drop of rain, but meditating every day is like a jar that has collected many rain drops and eventually is full.

Policy and Religion are useful for power.  Leaders use policy and religion together to make people do what they want them to do.

Moving a heavy load is hard with only one wheel on one side of the cart.  Intelligence is like that one wheel.  You need three wheels to move forward in life.  Intelligence, heart-ness, and will-ness.

There is the world's way and there is God's way.  Jesus and Buddha teach us God's way.

The 21st century is so fast and young people only follow the world's way which is not good.

I think you should keep reading to learn more philosophy.  Jesus Christ and Buddha taught us philosophy.  It is hard to understand and takes time.

Intelligence helps you move and change material things but it cannot teach you a good life.

Jesus prayed in the name of God, the son, and the holy spirit.  We should use the spirit to live, but many people do not want that because it is hard to understand.

Jesus did not want to die I think.  He wanted to live because he was human.

Living the life of a monk is a hard life.

Meditation and following the Buddha's teachings can help us see the Kingdom.













Saturday, January 7, 2012

Doodle Me This

Doodles are windows into a world where spiritual ballpoint pens are unrestrained.  Masterpieces require neither a frame and matting nor an artist statement to declare relevance.

My friend frequently encounters young ones marking up their workbooks and desks with sketches of creative exuberance that conquers his mundane lectures.  His frustration is understandable, yet he too was once a doodler. 

Sift through his parent’s attic and you will find a box labeled, “Corey’s drawings.”  Most of these pieces were created out of protest on notebook paper with the use of mechanical pencils and dirty erasers.  Scenes depict spaceships, aliens, geometric shapes and futuristic cityscapes often on the back of homework assignments or class notes.

Here are a few recent additions.  Two of these are based on the simple premise: A human replaces an inanimate object for a day.  The other piece is drawn on Korean receipts taped together.