The Ramblings of the Titanium Don

Explorations of Conscious Reality Creation and Other Matters

Month: July 2013

Pathwalking 83

Trust is a multi-faceted concept many of us find difficult at best.  When a breach of trust is an external issue you are faced with, what to do with the person/entity that did this?  Do you keep them in your life, let them go, move them from inner circles to outer circles?  But when it comes to the self you don’t have the same option.

Of course, one could argue, you DO have that option.  You can take on an alternate persona.  You can try to be someone other than who you are.  You can put on that fake smile and move forward like it was another person in another life who did this.

This is the equivalent of putting a bandaid on the remains of an arm that was torn off.  You might slow the bleeding, but you are not in any way actually treating the wound.  And if you do not treat the wound, you will die.

Yes, that is a harsh view, perhaps.  But that death may be as metaphorical as it could be physical.  And the phrase I died a little inside is frequently associated with a violation of trust.  And it is very likely a part of you DOES die when you violate your own trust.

I can’t believe I took that money.  How could I have been fooled by him?  Why did I sleep with her?  Why didn’t I realize how much I was hurting them?  If you have ever found yourself asking one of these questions, or another like it, I think what you were really wondering was – How can I ever trust myself again?  And that is what I’ve been on about for the past couple of weeks now.  Because when you get right down to it, this is one of the hardest questions we will ever ask ourselves.

Last week we talked about forgiveness.  It is vitally important that I forgive myself the breach of trust, because otherwise I will be incapable of moving forward.  I have to move on, because otherwise I will be overwhelmed by the negative emotions that broken trust generated, and I will lose my joy, my hope, my will to choose.  In other words, it will become impossible for me to walk this, or any other Path.

Analyze the trust issue for the why.  Examine that once you understand it.  Accept that trust was affected.  Forgive yourself for the transgression, choose not to let the negativity and hurt and pain latch a hold of your psyche, and then move on.

While I suggest you need to forgive, you cannot forget.  If you forget, if you deny the terrible negative emotions you have felt, you will not learn from the experience.  If you do not learn from this experience, it can and probably WILL happen again.  And then you have to go through the whole process all over again.

I think a lot of people live their lives in this way.  They are constantly struggling with exactly this.  They build trust, they lose trust, they feel the pain and let it rule them a while…and then they start the cycle ALL OVER AGAIN.  I also think that a lot of this is because rather than learning how to build that trust in YOURSELF, you are constantly seeking outside validation, and putting your trust in other entities.

As I have been working on this idea these past couple weeks, I have begun to develop a new appreciation for this tenet of life.  I also am finding myself starting to believe that it is because we often do not learn to trust ourselves that many of the ills of our world dominate as they do.

Who teaches you to trust yourself?  In theory, this is your parents, this is your teachers, your family, your friends.  But I think it is often much easier to learn from these experiences not trust in yourself, but trust in others.  A transference occurs, and we place the trust we should be learning in the self on other entities, other people and groups and so on.

Trust me is all too often said as a humorous quip, an ironic statement, a sarcastic jibe.  I think we also take almost more comfort in others trusting US than in trusting ourselves.  I don’t have to trust myself, because they trust me.  Trouble is, when that trust gets broken – and I am pretty sure if you do not trust yourself even if others trust you, it will – it becomes harder to rebuild.  This also takes you further from being able to know yourself.

I have, in writing these out, become keenly fascinated by how deeply trust is rooted in Pathwalking.  I am also rather amazed by how multi-faceted and complex a topic trust really is.  As I continue on with this theme, I am realizing that I do not trust myself as much as I need to, and that is part of why my own attempts to walk my path have been fraught with mixed results.

In many respects, I am asking you, my reader, to trust me.  I am asking you to look at what I am telling you, and to trust that I know what I am talking about.  What’s funny about that, to me, is that I accept there are people who will look at this philosophy I share and consider it laughable.  I know some people do not read these because they think it’s all hippy new-age hooky-spooky bullshit.  I trust that you will get something out of these ideas I put forward, and accept that that is not going to be for everyone.

Do you have trust in yourself?

 

This is the eighty-third entry in my series. These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way. Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking is available in print and for your Kindle.

Pathwalking 82

Trust is a multi-faceted concept many of us find difficult at best.  Trust is reliance on something tangible or intangible, holding onto confidence and hope.  That is what trust is.

Last week I began to explore that trust in the self is in many respects even more vital than trust in any external force or entity.  Without proper trust in who I am, and what I want to do, walking my own Path will be almost impossible.

I concluded by asking this question:  What do you do to regain lost trust?  This is difficult on a lot of levels, which is why I want to explore it further.

A personal note here:  Please bear with me.  I have been working on this self-exploration, specifically Pathwalking, for a while now.  Putting this particular notion into words is new.  It has long been a part of my own character, but expressing it like this is a very different avenue than I am familiar with travelling.

This might be easier to approach from the external first.  When you lose your trust in someone or something you have a few options.  The thing NOT to do is to get angry and hold a grudge.  And as much as people say forgive and forget, I would argue that while it is good to forgive, it is not so useful to forget.  Forgetting allows for repetition, and trust violations are NEVER something anyone wants to repeat.  So, as such, the first and probably most important step:

Forgive.  It is vitally important that you forgive the transgression.  Now it IS necessary to note that forgiving is not acceptance, nor is it permission – it is simply the first step in moving past the trust violation.  You have to forgive so that you do not hold onto the negativity that was generated by the breach of trust.

This is probably a tangent here, but it cannot be helped.  Do you realize how many things in this world would be better if we were more capable of forgiving?  Think about it – how many relationships have been destroyed, how many violent acts, how many wars have been fought because neither party involved could forgive?  And on that same note, how many suicides do you think are the result of the inability to forgive the self?  Forgiveness does NOT come easily to many people, because anger is a very powerful emotion.  It is easier to destroy than to build, and forgiveness requires building a bridge to regain what was lost.

I was so badly hurt.  I was devastated.  I cannot possibly forgive such a mean spirited, unconscionable act!  How many times have you been made to feel this way?  More importantly, when you held onto this, what good came of it?  In time, you likely let it go, but unforgiven it yet remains a festering wound.  Past wounds unhealed make Pathwalking very difficult.

As bad as this can be from an external source, it is even WORSE when it is entirely on the self.  When you have done something to violate your self trust, forgiving yourself can be difficult at best.  And it is largely the inability to forgive the self that leads us to sadness, to depression, to alcohol and drug abuse, and in the worst case scenarios to suicide.

How do I forgive such a terrible thing?  There is no one answer to this question.  Different situations, different problems, different violations of trust are going to make for different actions to forgive.  But I think it is quintessential that forgiveness happens.  I think that some or all of the following elements go into forgiveness.

Analysis.  First you have to examine the what, the who, the how, the where, the when of the breach of trust.  You have to look at it closely, which in and of itself can be difficult.  And you have to figure out these elements in order to understand the why, because without knowing why trust was lost I don’t think further steps to fix the problem can occur.

Examination.  Analysis is about discovering the root.  Examination is about understanding just what actually happened, the nature of the broken trust, and what your next options are.

Acceptance.  This is NOT a denial of the hurt feelings broken trust causes.  This is accepting that trust is lost, broken, violated or what-have-you.  Accept that it happened, that you cannot undo it, and that now you have to move on ultimately to:

FORGIVENESS.  Forgiving is very specifically about acknowledgment of the trust issue.  In this particular instance, it is about LETTING GO of the anger, resentment, and negativity that has come of the loss of trust.  But more importantly, when it comes to the SELF, it is about forgiving yourself for violating your own trust.  This is hard, this is a concept that forces you to really grab a hold of your emotional state, and take control of it.  THAT is what forgiveness is about.

Move on. It is important that you do not forget the trust issue, because if you forget it is very possible it will repeat itself.  It is important that you learn from the experience.  That is what moving on is about.  You have to make a very conscious choice here, and to continue onwards and past this obstacle in your path.

Analyze the trust issue for the why.  Examine that once you understand it.  Accept that trust was affected.  Forgive yourself for the transgression, choose not to let the negativity and hurt and pain latch a hold of your psyche, and then move on.

I will continue to explore trust and its relation to Pathwalking further next week.

 

This is the eighty-second entry in my series. These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way. Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking is available in print and for your Kindle.

Pathwalking 81

Trust is a multi-faceted concept many of us find difficult at best.

Trust takes on a lot of forms, and can have a lot of meanings.  It is not a simple concept or just a word, it is a tenet of human existence.

What does trust mean?  Extracting key elements of its meaning from dictionary.com, we know that trust means:

noun

reliance on the integrity, strength, ability, surety, etc., of a person or thing; confidence;  confident expectation of something; hope.

verb (used without object)

to rely upon or place confidence in someone or something (usually followed by in or to): to trust in another’s honesty, trusting to luck; to have confidence; hope: Things work out if one only trusts.

To sum it up, trust is reliance on something tangible or intangible, holding onto confidence and hope.  That is what trust is.

Most often we apply trust to external things. These things include the government, clergy, friends, family, even random strangers.  But it is of far greater importance that we learn to trust internally.  We need to learn how to trust ourselves.

For some people, I am pretty sure that this is an easy concept to grasp.  But for many, like myself, trust does not come readily.  External or internal, I am not quick to trust.  Trust has to be earned, to be built, to be developed.

As important as it is to trust outsiders, trusting yourself is even more necessary.  How many times have you been faced with a situation where your response was I don’t trust myself with that?  This can take a lot of forms – something new you have never encountered before, a dangerous situation, a temptation.  But this is an internal issue, and trusting yourself is key to choosing for yourself.

Which brings us round to the entire notion of Pathwalking.  Part of finding and choosing a path is trusting in yourself when it comes to making that choice.  Trust that you choose correctly, trust that you can and will choose wisely.  Trust that you have the ability to choose at all.

Trust is embodied in a lot of different ways.  It is in many respects a very emotional thing.  Most adults have had their trust broken at one time or another.  It may have been something small – like learning that Santa or the Tooth Fairy are not real.  It may have been more substantial – someone you trusted to take care of something dropped the ball and let you down.  It may have felt far more devastating – a lover cheated, a friend betrayed your confidence, etc.  All of these will produce an emotional response.  And it is, of course, a negative one.

I have stated often that negative emotions are a hindrance to Pathwalking.  It is in negativity that we find the greatest inaction, that we cannot make forward progress.  It is negative emotions that cause us to give up choice for ourselves to avoid more negative emotions.

Trust works this way too.  Trust, once lost, is hard to regain.  And as bad as that is when it is an external force that violates your trust, it is far worse when you yourself break your trust.  Recovering from your own indiscretion is never an easy task.

How does one break trust with yourself?  This takes a lot of forms.  That piece of cake you were avoiding because of your diet.  That kiss that should not have happened.  That little white lie you told to spare someone’s feelings.  That action you took against your better judgment that led to a bad place.  Ignoring your instinct and landing somewhere undesirable.  All of these are examples of breaking trust with yourself.  All of these can lead to negative emotions, and thus lead you away from walking the Path you might choose.

Trust is a surprisingly important part of Pathwalking.  Specifically trust in yourself.

What do you do to regain lost trust?  That is a very good question, and requires further, deeper analysis.  I will explore it further in next week’s post.

 

This is the eighty-first entry in my series. These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way. Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking is available in print and for your Kindle.

Back to the future?

When did 2013 become 1950 all over again?

In history class, when I was in high school back in the very early 1990’s, we studied the civil rights movement and learned about all the progress the country had made since the likes of Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and so on and so forth.

In the year 2008 we elected the first black man to the Presidency of the United States.  Amazing! All that progress, all that forward motion towards a nation of greater equality, and I know I was not alone in hoping maybe we’d have greater prosperity as a result of that.  The dawning of an actual, factual new age!

Here we are, five years later, and I am continually being stunned and amazed by the news.  Women, granted voting suffrage in the USA in 1920, are having to fight for their rights to control their own bodies. They are being denied their basic rights in the name of…well, I can’t rightfully figure out in who’s or what’s name these things are being done for.  In addition to that, homosexuals, transgendered and other non-heterosexuals are fighting for the right to show their affection for one another and marry – and, oh yeah, maybe ALSO get all the financial benefit enjoyed by those who are hetero.  And on top of all of these things, it would appear that certain protections put in place to allow minorities easy access to voting are “unconstitutional”, and multiple legal issues are showing that racism is FAR from dead in this nation.

Are you as outraged as I am that after all these decades of supposed “progress”, we appear to be heading RIGHT BACK into the 1950’s?  We are going back to white elitists denying the vote to those they fear will take them out of power, we are going back to women being second class citizens, and we are seeing black people feeling as if they have to take ludicrous precautions to avoid being shot solely based on the color of their skin.

The travesty of these things are striking on multiple levels.  That they are even taking place in this day and age is inexcusable.  How on earth did these backwards thinking, unthinking people come to power and gain the ability to undo a half century of forward progress?  Why is the press not doing any research anymore, and only working as a propaganda machine for their corporate parents and political interests?  What happened to fact checking, investigative reporting, and unbiased content?

Why have we let the partisan and paranoid continue to feed on fears?  Why are we not standing up and trying to reclaim the progress of the past 50 years towards greater equality for ALL?

We are spied upon by our own government in the name of “protection from terrorism.”  We keep re-electing the same leeches over and over again to suck up to the wealthy and powerful and their agendas, rather than being of and by US, the people.  We complain and make noise and bitch about how awful this or that is, but we do not do anything substantive about it.

Why not?  Because it will not be easy.  Because we have been lulled by decades of “status quo” into thinking we can coast along without change.  Because we are ALL struggling to balance our barely-sufficient jobs with our family and social lives.  Because we fear that if we DO try to move against the government, the police-state we are so afraid of becoming WILL silence us.  Because most of us are really on the peripheral of ALL of these awful things, and believe that we will continue to be unaffected by them.  I am sure there are many more reasons and excuses than these, both more and less valid.

We cannot remain still, we have to continue to move forward!  We cannot keep letting the paranoid, partisan and phobic continue to dictate the discourse of our nation.  We must end the control of special interests and their money on our politicians.  We need to remind these people whom they work for, and that WE THE PEOPLE deserve proper representation.  We need to rekindle the civil rights movement, and expand it to cover ALL Americans, no matter race, creed, color, gender, religion, sexual orientation, or what-have-you.

This is 2013.  We are well into the 21st century, and we need to continue FORWARD.  We cannot and should not go back to the past.  We need to stop denying rights to ANYONE, we need to get our nation back on track to being progressive and commendable.

Everyone is welcome to their own opinions, we are a nation of free speech and civil liberties and freedoms, but those are meant for EVERYONE.  We have to stop the denial of those rights based on personal morality.  Men cannot continue to deny women their rights, heterosexuals cannot continue to deny homosexual rights, whites cannot continue to deny blacks their rights, etc etc.  We must continue the forward progress of equality for ALL.

This nation has long called itself a beacon of justice, of hope, of progress in the modern world.  We need to live up to that now more than ever.  Let’s each do our part and make it the reality once again.  Let us celebrate our unity, not our divisions.  If we cannot get those in power to work for us, we need to replace them.  We need to stop patronizing those who use their money and power to corrupt and influence the process.

We need to remember and take action in any way we can, not to divide and conquer, but to unite and inspire.  Let us work together to end the false divisions of our nation, and reunite for the greater good.  Only if we strive towards progress together can we show those in power they need to change accordingly…or get out of the way.

Think about it.  Then, working together, let us find ways to act upon it.

Pathwalking 80

It is never in your own best interest to ignore an inspired idea.

Yet often, we do.  And we make all sorts of excuses – It’s too impractical.  There isn’t enough time/money/resources for that.  I am unable to do that.  I can dream, but I cannot make the dream reality.  It’s impossible.

When we fall into this trap, it becomes truth.  Truth is not, as many people believe, a simple notion.  I have long said there are three brands to every truth – mine, yours, and the absolute.  And sometimes they are ALL true, but from a certain point of view.

Denying an inspired idea is often because we just do not see the howI have a great idea for an amazing invention, but I am not an engineer, and I do not have the necessary capital to make it happen, etc, etc.  We are really good at seeing the impossible path from inspiration to reality, and all too often because we accept it as impossible, it gets ignored.

Pathwalking is about choice.  I think I say that every week, but it’s a fundamental point that I don’t believe I can reiterate too many times.  Choosing to accept something as impossible is a choice.  Plain and simple.

I believe that nothing is truly impossible.  Improbable, impractical, difficult and maybe even unreasonable as something may seem, I do not believe it is simply impossible.  But the fear of the unknown and change and uncertainty makes calling it impossible an easy cop out.

I am a writer.  I have been published thus far twice in short story anthologies, and self published the first year of these Pathwalking posts.  I have written a number of press releases and magazine articles and Patch dot com news stories and website content, and I post to at least two blogs per week.  I have four completed novels (one of which has even been professionally edited), and four novelettes written for National Novel Writer’s Month.

I write every day.  Whether it’s for one of my ongoing works of fiction, a blog, a business, or anything in between I am always writing.  Some days I feel less inspired than others, and I feel less accomplishment because my first love in writing, fiction, gets less attention than I should want to give it.  But I am still inspired to write, even if no one has taken a chance on me to publish a novel.

This is not self aggrandizing, this is part of my point.  I am inspired to write.  I love to write, writing is my bliss.  Words flow from my mind to my fingers across my keyboard and into sentences and paragraphs conveying ideas and information and even whole worlds for an audience that sometimes is rather limited.  Despite years of submitting my fiction to agents and rejections, I continue.  Despite sometimes tepid support from people I care about, I continue.  I believe in my own ability to write, and I believe that I need to follow this inspiration.

No, it is not entirely paying the bills.  No, it is not yet making me a household name like Stephen King or JK Rowling.  No, I do not get paid for most of the blogs I publish in.  But I have still achieved success in following my inspiration.

Success is a personal measure.  I set the bar.  And I will not deny that the bar for me used to be seeing the spine of a book in Barnes and Noble with MY name on it.  I do not consider my current interpretation of success, however, as any kind of “lowering” of the bar.  Instead, I simply feel successful in how frequently I write.  I feel successful with every weekly blog post, every website text, every press release, every completed chapter in my unpublished works.  I am successful in that I follow my inspiration, and I write.

I did deny my inspiration for a time.  Most of college, and the first few years after I wrote nothing.  And it wasn’t until I began a short piece about a loan character in an impossible situation emerging victorious-but-battered that would eventually blossom into a multiple novel epic that I realized I had been missing something.  I was missing my inspiration.  I was missing my bliss.  I let other concerns replace my inspiration to write.

Thomas Edison said, “Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”  I disagree with his fraction, but the point is still valid.  Inspiration is important, and finding and following it can be difficult and tiring and perspiring, but it is what makes us who we are.  And choosing for ourselves based on what inspires us is what Pathwalking is.

So you’ve thought up an incredible invention or an amazing business model or some other inspired notion.  But you have no idea how to take the inspiration and make it real.  You are not an engineer or scientist or business person or independently wealthy.  But that does not mean you are without options, and without the ability to choose to find some way to follow your bliss.

Choose your path.  It may look impossible, it may be that while you see the start (the inspiration) and the end (the realization of the inspiration) the path between is unclear.  You can still choose to make it.  I believe that it is following inspiration that leads us to find greater satisfaction and ultimately happiness in our existence.

What/whom inspires you to be all that you can be?

 

This is the eightieth entry in my series. These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way. Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking is available in print and for your Kindle.

Independence

Independence Day.  While there will be celebrations and barbecues and fireworks across the nation, I have to ask a question I know I am not alone in pondering.  Have we lost sight of today’s meaning?

On July 4, 1776, 237 years ago, the Continental Congress ratified the Declaration of Independence, separating the United States from the British Empire.  It was a bold, spirited, brave move to win freedom from an oppressive government, and arguably changed the course not only of American history, but the rule of monarchs worldwide and the rise of democratic governance.

The most famous section of the Declaration is probably its preamble.  “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”  This is not the introduction of this historic document, however.  It begins thus:

“The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen United States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.”

Right here, right in the very beginning of our nation’s independence, the separation of church and state is established.  The Continental Congress is basically saying that the people deserve an equal opportunity to make their own way, and to be governed by a body that is concerned largely with helping them experience this.

After the preamble, the declaration continues:  “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

It is this section right here that should be moving us to action in this modern day.  Almost a quarter of a millennium ago, they invoked the right of the people to alter or abolish their government for our own safety and happiness.  In fact, the Constitution of the United States, adopted by this newly created independent nation 13 years after its Declaration of Independence, begins with “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

Do you believe that We the People are represented by our government today?  For the most part I fear the answer is no.  Our governing bodies have become insular, divided by parties with specific agendas and rigidities, and increasingly beholden to corporate entities and their money.  Maybe on the most local level of government We the People still have some empowerment, but overall I cannot see it.

We are being inundated with stories of government inaction.  Our Congress is so deeply divided that compromise has become a dirty word.  In Texas the Governor clearly wants HIS agenda alone, and will manipulate the process however he can to make it happen.  The two parties are so beholden to special interests that they can hardly be seen to do anything useful for the average American – like helping students with educational loan interest rates.  Even our Supreme Court has become so out-of-touch with reality, they have recently set the stage to turn back the clock on voting rights by decades.

And We the People are disempowered.  We have allowed fear of terrorism to grant the government unbelievable power in spying on us.  If you are a woman you are seeing constant attacks on your rights to mind your own body and health far beyond the scope of human decency in the name of politics.  And soon we will watch certain states where all those currently in power begin taking advantage of the recent Supreme Court decision, and go forward with new and unbelievable means to suppress the voters they fear will remove them from power.

Am I calling for a 2nd American Revolution?  No.  At least, not yet.  But my purpose in writing this today is to remind you of what Independence means.  When you are enjoying your day off from work, and you are spending time celebrating with friends and family and watching the fireworks displays, think on why this is a holiday.  And please consider the imminent danger our disempowerment represents to the future of our way of life, and our ability to make our own way.

I believe, and I hope not wrongly, that the silent majority is reasonable.  The silent majority still holds these truths to be self evident, that ALL are created equal.  Before I and other thinkers like me become enemies of the state, before we allow this government to continue down this dark and dangerous path, it is my hope the silent majority will end its silence.  Let’s break the cycle, demand our government return to accountability, and do right By the People, rather than by their corporate sponsors and various self-interests.

Let us reclaim our independence.

Pathwalking 79

I have stated many times that Pathwalking is about choice.  And part of the reason to make that choice is in order to find happiness.

Why is being happy so important?

What it all boils down to is energy.  Once more, EVERYTHING is energy.  It cannot be created nor destroyed, but it takes on different forms and shapes.  Energy is subject to laws of science and nature in every discipline.  One of these laws is that like attracts like.  Ergo, negative attracts negative, and positive attracts positive.

When you are unhappy, what generally happens?  Do you find that more things crop up to add to your displeasure?  Do you find people around you also complaining about their lack of happiness?  Do you encounter more and more people, situations and events that do not make you happy?

When you are happy, what generally happens?  Do you find that more things crop up to add to your pleasure?  Do you find people around you also expressing things they are happy with?  Do you encounter more and more people, situations and events that make you happy?

I am aware these are generalizations…but for the most part, are they wrong?  In my own experience they are not.  When I am unhappy, unless I actively seek out things to make myself feel otherwise, I will discover added unhappiness.  I will become more and more negative, more and more down, and it will take a great deal of work to turn it around.

Conversely, when I am happy, I can discover more things that will make me happy.  I become more positive, more up, and while there is work to remain in this state, it is easier work than its opposite.  Being happy is a good feeling…and part of the human condition is to seek out things that make us feel good.

I will not deny that it is impossible to ALWAYS be happy.  A part of human nature is that we experience such dualities of emotion, and so we will experience things that do NOT make us happy.  But as with all things Pathwalking, we can choose whether or not to dwell in our unhappiness, or seek a means to move past it.

We all know somebody who likes to be miserable.  We have no doubt that that person appears to take pleasure in constantly complaining, always fussing, never expressing any happiness.  And while on the one hand we might be somewhat amused by that person and his or her antics, on the other hand we feel sorry for them.

Why do we feel sorry for them?  Because we seek things that make us feel good, that make us happy.  We do not dwell in misery or those things opposite happiness.  At least, we do not dwell there all the time.

Yet we do not often enough make choices about how we are feeling, and instead “roll with the punches” or “go with the flow” or “let the chips fall where they may” or just generally let things run their course.  Once again, Pathwalking is about acknowledging our ability to choose.  And one of those choices, constantly, is choosing how we allow ourselves to feel.

I believe that we want to feel good.  We want to feel pleasant things, we want to experience joy and bliss and happiness.  Everything we do is designed to garner those positive feelings.  We go to school to get an education to learn to do things so that we may, after the time we are dependent on our parents for our happiness, know how to find it for ourselves.  We go to work to earn money so that we can have and do the things that we think will bring us happiness.

Why else do we have possessions?  Yes, you can argue that there are things that we buy out of necessity, that we NEED food and shelter and other basics.  But I do not know anyone who ONLY wants the most basic “things” along the way, they want specific things because they think in the having of those things, they will find happiness.

I am not decrying materialism here, it should be noted.  I certainly have my share of toys that DO, in their own way, bring me happiness.  My point is no less valid.  Happiness is the end goal of the things we do in life.  And rather than deny its importance or sweep that under the proverbial rug, we should embrace it.  This is very much what Pathwalking is all about.

Can you see the importance of finding happiness?

 

This is the seventy-ninth entry in my series. These weekly posts are specifically about walking along the path of life, and my desire to make a difference in this world along the way. Thank you for joining me.

The first year of Pathwalking is available in print and for your Kindle.

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