After the rain…

The day out on the island was hot & muggy. Time was spent meeting new scouters & sharing our experiences & woodland skills. Meals were shared as were many stories. A good time was had by all & I think we all walked away with new knowledge.

But as the sun began to lower itself in the sky. My companions all left – one boatload at a time. Until I was left alone with my thoughts & my own woodland lore. My first task was to recce a spot to sleep for the night. Upon studying the map of the island that hangs in the cabin, I picked an area on the north shore – near what is referred to as “Skinny Dip Beach” (because Scouts of old would skinny dip at this spot). And so, I set forth along the trail – watching for poison ivy which riddles some spots on the island – seeking out a spot to bed down for the night. Once selecting a spot with a view of the lake, I returned to the cabin & hiked my gear in. Then I setup my camp, enjoying the solitude & the faith I have in my own skill.

The night was still hot – for as I sat next to my small fire I felt as if I was sitting in a sauna. As I ate my supper, I contemplated the beauty & serenity that surrounded me. The sun was setting, as too was the crescent moon. The silver sickle following in the path of the golden disc… a potent image.

The night was quiet. The lake was calm. Peace, paradise & serenity filled me. A perfect moment.

The next morning the weather turned. The winds blew strong from the south & with it came cooler & wetter air. The rain fell, soaking my tent. It wasn’t much fun striking camp – but something you get used to if you’ve ever spent a lot of time outdoors. I made it back to the cabin & began to plan my solo canoe trip back to the mainland. Listening to the weather on the emergency weather radio in the cabin, I watched through the window as the rain slowed & then stopped. A glimmer of sun poked through the clouds for a moment – an omen foretelling me of my only opportunity to cross the lake without rain.

As quick as I could, I loaded up the canoe & paddled for shore. The wind was with me as I left the dock next to the cabin. However, as I rounded the north point of the island – passing my campsite from the night before – I turned into the wind. I made short sprints from island to island – using the granite shores that rise up out of the water as a windbreak. At last, I reached the landing, unloaded my gear – put the canoe in its berth – & returned home.

The adventure, the moment, now in the past.

Tell me about your own adventures – either in the wild or any other journeys of solitude you might have undertaken.  What did you learn about the world & about yourself?  Please leave me a comment below.

Until next time…

A Quick Thought…

If everyone simply sat back for one moment each day & contemplated life, their Individual place in it & where we would like to be going – if we really took the time to contemplate such important matters – perhaps the world would be in a better place right now.

So take a moment to yourself today & think about existence & your place in it. Think about where you would like to be in a year, five years, ten years, twenty five years & fifty years from now. What is your life going to look like then? Hold those images in your mind & think of them everytime you are faced with a decision.

In My Dark Years…

There is a strange juxtaposition within my memory of the years I spent in University.  They were both some of my happiest times – as well as my darkest.  I was only seventeen in my first year of University & had been the only person from my graduating class to attend the particular school where I would spend five years of my life.  In essence, I was a stranger amongst strangers who was still even a stranger to himself.  For it is around this period in an Individual’s life when they begin to discover who they are & what they want out of life.  In a way, my journey was probably not dissimilar to the experiences of others who have gone through this challenging time.  However, my own journey had its own twists & turns that others might not have experienced.

During these Dark Years (as I have come to call them – though remember some of my happiest memories come from this time) I kept an informal diary of my thoughts & my reactions to events transpiring around me.  By “informal” I mean that I only wrote in my “diary” when the whim struck me & I felt inspired to quickly write down my impressions during a given moment – or when reflecting on recent events.  I suffered a certain social malaise – a hopeless disgust with how the world seemingly operated & the powers that seemed to greedily guide the lives of millions of blissfully ignorant people.  I’m sure there are many who have had similar feelings about the state of the world.  However, this Malaise Sociale lead me into a dark depression that I hid from my family, friends & peers.  I felt powerless to fight against the systems & the powerful people pulling the strings that kept the population enslaved to the false & dangerous ideals espoused by society.

It was a Dark Place that I inhabited.  At least in my own mind.

The memory of these years was sparked today by the simple action of re-reading some of those diary entries.  Reading the words that attempted to capture the thoughts, ideas & emotions I was experiencing at the time.  Like I said earlier, my memories of these Dark Years are mixed – both with the Malaise Sociale that plagued me & the joyous freedom & boundless possibility I felt as a young University student.  I met some of my dearest friends during this time – friends who have been an integral part of my life.  These strange times had a missive influence on the man I have become today.  I still hope for freedom & boundless possibility – but at the same time I still feel a certain malaise – though it is not a deep & troubled as it once had been.  Today I look on the world with hope for the future & with much more realistic & kinder expectations of my fellow humans.

What events in your past influence the way you think & the things that you do today?  Tell me about what challenges you have faced & overcome that have made you a stronger, more focused Individual.  Add your voice in the comments section below & let’s share our experiences.

An Ancient Allegory About Enlightenment…

Over 2000 years ago, Plato described reality in terms of an Allegory.  He was keenly aware of how much of what we Believe is simply illusions we Choose to accept.  This wonderful animation perfectly presents his Allegory Of The Cave.

Are there any other Allegories or Parables that have helped you understand life?  If so, I want to hear about them.  Tell me what stories inspired you to look at the world differently.

Tesla’s Take On Human Energy

 e2bb31e9506d96e53f147697b88c690eThere is much to be said about Nikola Tesla. That he was a man ahead of his time is obvious. In fact, one could argue that his ideas are even ahead of our own times. That there are many who believe that a great conspiracy surrounds his works – supposed stories of the US government confiscating many of his works & writings – is certainly the case. Many believe such stories – whether these stories are True or not. I am not about to make a judgement on this here.

However, what I am going to offer today is some inspired reading of one of Tesla’s works. Originally published in the Century Illustrated Magazine in June of 1900, this article delves into the topic of energy & human potential. It is a fascinating look at how Tesla’s mind worked & a great introduction to some of his ideas regarding energy, vibration & human potential. You can read the entire article at the following link: The Problem Of Increasing Human Energy

Wild stuff, eh? Well, share your thoughts & leave me a comment below. Tell me what you think of Tesla, his ideas & any crazy ideas about energy you might have. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 

 

The Top 5 Philosophy Books That Influenced Me

 

5. The Republic – Plato

As one of the Father’s of Western Philosophy, Plato has had a massive influence
on our civilization and the way people think. The Republic is probably his best
known work. In the dialectic style, Plato attempts to describe a perfect society
while addressing many of the issues any society would face. The sociology &
politics aside, the part that sticks out the most in my mind is The Allegory Of The
Cave
which begins on line 514a of the text. If you are able to see the material
world for what it truly is, it might bear a striking resemblance to Plato’s Cave.
What you can learn from this observation might shock & free you at the same
time.

 

4 Être Et Le Néant (Being & Nothingness) – Jean Paul Satre

Perhaps the greatest existential atheist to have ever lived, Jean Paul Satre was a
man who evoked strong reactions from his readers & from the world as a whole.
His ideas regarding the nature reality and the power of the Individual turned
philosophy on its head. For me, the most important thing I learnt from Satre is
that we are beings who are Free except that we are only constrained by Choice.
It is the understanding of the Power of Choice that will Truly set you Free.

 

3. Meditations – René Descartes

Whenever I think of Descartes, I can’t help but get Monty Python’s The
Philosopher’s Song
stuck in my head. You know the one: “René Descartes was a
drunken old fart//’I drink therefor I am’” But I digress… My own epistemology &
understanding of knowledge starts with Descartes. His famous Cogito (mocked
so well by Python & many others) is for me, the foundation of all Epistemology.
This a priori (or self-evident) Truth proves that at the very least, I exist. And from
there, anything is Truly possible

 

2. The Celestine Prophecy – James Redfield

Though not a Philosophical work, strictly speaking, the life’s philosophy
contained in The Celestine Prophecy will put you on the path of connectedness &
help you reach your goals. The idea of the Celestine is that every day
synchronistic coincidences happen to Individuals. These coincidences are
messages from the universe that, if heeded, will help Individuals along their life’s
path. The trick is, staying connected & following these coincidences to their
ultimate end. This is an endeavour I am still struggling to master.

 

1 Thus Spoke Zarathustra – Friedrich Nietzsche

The great german Nihilist. The often misunderstood philosophical genius &
madman. Nietzsche’s masterpiece is superbly written & complex to its core. The
ideas it presents demand that the reader take up the hammer and strike down
everything – & then run through the forest dancing & singing, living life to its
fullest. It warns of the dangers of the Mob & forces the Individual to reach for
the higher goals in life. As Zarathustra himself says many times: “Man is but a
bridge to the overman.”

 

What are some of the books that have influenced you? Leave me a comment & let me
know. Maybe we can share our Knowledge & help each other cross Zarathustra’s
bridge faster.