Monthly Archives: May 2014

Penultimate

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Sunset over the Eternal City

There hasn’t been a post here for a while because there hasn’t been the reason for one. I’ve finished my London semester, I’m in the thick of a journey across Europe I’ve done many things and seen many places. Most of them quite swell, some total downers, but hey, fun stories in retrospect. Sure, there have been moments of note.  A few along the way that have made me stop for a second, appreciate life and the beauty. Moments of light and exception that are simply there, never to be replicated or replaced, near impossible to express. Causing me to appreciate and love those people around me for what they are. Moments and periods of tinkering with myself, coming to terms with parts of me, are they good? Useful? Worthy? Appreciated? Reflective of what I am and want to be?

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Firenze

I don’t believe there is any more gratifying feeling than those moments in which someone comes to understand you. They know you as you are, as you feel and know yourself to be, at least for that unique moment. Maybe not so much later, maybe more so. But that moment, that brings me such joy and beauty of life. I have been able to express myself as fully as I can, such that another can understand me. And they appreciate me. I am worth appreciation, love, admiration, respect, care, brotherhood. I have put the self forth to cause another to take it in. It may seem a selfish moment, but I do know that if someone knows me in that way, it must be that I know them in the same way. Because if I have been able to communicate and express forth myself to them to the effect of understanding, then I must know them in the same, or this expression and understanding is not possible.

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Cinqueterre, Italy

I’ve been reading A Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A. Heinlein. I’ve always known I love to read, but I’ve found it to be crucial for personal peace and mental stimulation when travelling or when life gets as life does. It’s a fantastic book so far.  But the concept of ‘grok’ is a large part of the story. And its a concept I find very much applicable on this journey, especially as it truly comes to an end in about ten days.

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A stormy day in Venice from under the archways

To grok is to take your time, to meditate, to come to understand to put something in its rightful place. Its the word I did not know was right but is. It’s exactly what I need, its what a large part of this experience has been. To come to understand it all. Maybe right when experienced, maybe filed for later, or still waiting for the right information to put it rightfully into understanding. This is what I have tried to say before and stumbled to phrase. To grok, to understand, to take in, to praise for itself, to see its beauty, its life, its purpose. If you do not grok you are out of balance, off centre, and likely in a pain of sorts, you will feel no peace, not within or without. Take the requisite time to take this thing you encounter, properly see it, understand, place it in rightness, give it praise in itself and purpose.

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Looking out over Vienna

To take the requisite time is an ever so important concept, and one that’s been reinforced on this journey. Take your time when travelling, slow life down, it’s always better, sit, have a drink with a friend, or yourself, or a good book, dangle your feet off the Spanish Steps in Rome as the sun sets over the Vatican, kick it under an archway the Grand Canal in Venice with a bottle of wine, on top of Piazza Michaelangelo on Florence, nap in Stadtpark in Vienna, have a stein of beer with good friends at Fruhlingsfest in Munich, sit on a tree trunk in Lauterbrunnen and enjoy the utter beauty of this world. Take your time in life. As much as you invest yourself into what is you and yours, invest your time. Its a currency we all have in equal measure and is only second in value to yourself and person. These are your most valuable currencies, resources, gifts, and treasures. They are the most essential, irreplaceable, and elementary pieces of life.

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Tulips in Munich

We spend all of ourselves and all of our time to leave an impact, to create something in this world. What impact, what creation, that is a personal choice, make yours. Take a lesson from the glaciers that spent every last bit of  themselves, and centuries carving out the most beautiful places on earth, from the volcanoes expending and spewing themselves to create islands and mountains, from the tectonic plates waging titanic battles to shape our planet, from the stars literally burning themselves up over millennia so as to give this universe light. Take this from them, the greatest accomplishments of life are those we expend ourselves attaining. And they are the only ones worth pursuing. We are meant to use every part of ourselves in the best way. And there is no better way do so than to create beautiful impacts in the same way comets, glaciers, volcanoes, and stars do. With full force, full intent, and every bit of self and time we possess.

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Lauterbrunnen Valley

I should suppose this to be a penultimate post here, maybe one or two more at the end of it all, we’ll see how it goes. And I think a few lines from a song are quite fitting at this point for me.

Well I’ve been down this road before, its been one hell of a ride, the challenge is to balance on that fine line, between the earth and sky, and I will wait for the morning sun till the way is clear as day, okay, hallelujah! – Reflections – bliss n eso

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A view from Jungfraujoch, top of Europe

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