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Soul Canvas

29 Sep

We begin life like a painters’ canvas. We are blank, but we have a certain texture and color and what we become depends on who is painting, the type of brush that is used, the type of paints that are used and how all of those elements combine with what is already there.

All of the people and experiences we meet in life leaves strokes of color on our canvas. But when we have nothing, when we come to Zero, we are able to see that we, too, can partcipate in the making of our own portait. We can take up our own brush and, for the first time, become the artist. Painting deeply and vibrantly what is most important.

We have forgotten what is most important above all: Love. It is Love that covers all our flaws and shows only perfection. It is Love that pushes us into the best of who we are. It is Love that gives us the strength to endure. Most of our afflictions result from our forgetting one simple fact…Love does conquer all.

There are those people and experiences that we have encountered in lives that will forever be etched upon the canvas that we call our souls. We have to evaluate how we became the mess of colors and brush strokes that we are. What we will find is that eighty percent of who we are has resulted from our desire to love and be loved and our attempts to do so; some have been heavenly and some have been an absolute hell. The point is that no matter what we have been taught, no matter what we have experienced, no matter what has been painted upon us…it really is all about Love

Don’t Forget…

24 Sep

The problem is: we spend most of our lives forgetting who we are. In solitude we meet ourselves, we learn ourselves, and. (if we’re lucky) we come to love ourselves. In silence we come unto ourselves without judgment and we begin to remember.

We remember how brilliant and ambitious we were. We were going to change the world. We were going to laugh, love, and live the rest our lives. Then Life happened: quickly and mercilessly. Life came rushing at us with tricks we’d never seen, truths we never imagined, punches we weren’t prepared to roll with.

It’s no surprise we ended up where we did. Dreams are fragile and shatter when man-handled. Our hopes could only stand so many blows before crumpling at our feet. And there we were alone in the dark without a hope or a dream…and Life was still swinging. We did what we thought had to do to survive. But when nothing is all you have left, you realize there is another way.

Remember that Life is just Life…but we were made to live it. We don’t have to fight it or run from it…but we do have to accept the truth about it and commit to shaping that truth. It is a risk, but what matters most cannot be taken from us.

Our hope, our dreams, our integrity, our ambition are never taken. We lose them, we give up on them, we sacrifice them, but nobody can take them. So there is nothing to fear because we will not give up on them. We will not sacrifice them. If we lose them, we will reclaim them. We will leave this world the way we came into it: kicking, screaming, full of dreams, full of ambition, full of potential, full of hope. We will not forget who we are.

Who We Are

18 Sep

We live in a world with a twisted value system. The things that we value the most are superficial, temporal, and material. We value youth, beauty, and money: things that aren’t meant to last. We struggle to hold onto these things although they are consistently slipping away.

We have allowed the prevailing beliefs of society to warp our vision and our values. We have convinced ourselves that wealth, youth and beauty make us powerful. We have decided to believe that only the youthful, the beautiful, or the wealthy are important. We chase these things relentlessly, never once considering that they are not running away; they are fading away, as all things will.

Who we are is more beautiful, more powerful, more valuable, more lasting than anything we’ve ever owned. Things cannot define us. When all the diatractions are gone, when the facade has faded, when all our superficialities have ceased to anesthetize us from the truth, we find that all those things that once mattered so much really men nothing. We find that our greatest assets cannot be appraised through tangible quantifiers. We find that even if our flaws are discovered, we are still priceless.

Our integrity, our love, and our loyalty can never be taken from us. These are the ideals that make us who we are and, as long as we cling to them we have safeguarded the part of us that it would kill us to lose. That intangible, invisible nothing that we have when all else is lost, is all we need; it’s who we are.

Perfection Unveiled

9 Sep

Reduced to Zero: having lost everything we thought we needed, we are exposed and vulnerable. At Zero all of our defenses are stripped away. There are no walls, no smoke, no mirrors, no facade that we can hide behind.

At Zero we have have to move beyond our personas. We have to let go of that person that we invented to deal with the world for us. The reason we created the persona makes sense; most people we meet are hardly interested enough in us to go beyond the surface. So, we show them what we want them to see and they accept what we show them. It’s a vicious cycle that leaves the truth of who we are neglected, unexplored, and unappreciated.

Underneath the veil of our faultless, contrived perfection lies our tainted truth. The flawed and broken us we long to share with someone but are scared as hell to do so. But I assure you that who we are beneath the veil is more lovable, more courageous, more special than any one dimensional character we can concoct. And what’s even better is that real person at the core of our being is malleable and can be many (maybe not all) of those same things we pretend to be in our personas, but with a foundation of sincerity that will make us all the more attractive and powerful.

Ironic, huh? That at Zero, with nothing, we realize how empty we already were. We really didn’t have a whole lot to lose after all. We actually haven’t lost much besides the shroud that cloaks the light of our soul.

You see Zero is the perfect place to plot on change. Zero, nothing, is the beginning of everything. Zero is where we will face ourselves: the liar, the cheater, the manipulator, the insecure, and all those things we couldn’t acknowledge for fear of hating ourselves. We will meet our truth and change the things we cannot accept and accept the things we cannot change. And somewhere in the heat of the struggle we will realize that, in our imperfections, in spite of our imperfections, despite our imperfections, we are perfect and priceless. Of all the things that we risk losing, our self worth has never been at stake.

Zero Comes First

31 Aug

Of all numbers we have come to think of Zero as the most useless, the most worthless. One gets to be top dog, two is almost as great as One, and Three is not that bad. But poor Zero, at the front of the line; yet, it is ignored and discounted. Zero stands alone: a number with no value. Sounds like a chapter from our own biography, right? Strangers brush past us on the street as if we’re not there. Friends abandon us as if we don’t matter. Lovers leave us as if we never existed. We’re present and uncounted: Zero.

But Zero is not worthless. Zero is not useless. Zero is the possibility of all numbers. Do you get that? Zero is where all numbers come from. Zero announces the potential of counting. And they very one everyone is overlooking at this moment (you) is only the potential of who you could be…of who you will be. From nothing comes everything.

Make the most of your Zero moment. Think of it this way: you have no distractions, no facade, no lies to hide the bare truth of who you are. From that shapeless void you can create yourself however you want. You can see whats broken and begin to mend. You can see whats flawed and improve. Your journey may bring you to Zero, maybe more than once, but that’s okay. ‘Cause what appears to be nothing is really everything; Zero comes first.

All or Not at All

26 Aug

Some things happen to us and some things we allow to happen. We gain some things and we lose some things. The inevitable is that nothing lasts forever and we will lose it all one day. When that time comes – and it will come- it will be our choice as to whether it will be taken from us or whether we will let it go.

There is something strangely powerful about a person with nothing to lose…if they realize they have everything to gain. They become bold, willing to take risks, willing to gamble it all (because their all is not amounting to much). And that’s what they do: they give everything.

Our lives are filled with temporal things that are not meant to last and at some time we have to let those things go. If not, we miss opportunities for growth and evolution – all because we are trying to hold on to the false sense of security provided by the familiar and the conventional. The choice to let go and give our all, in an attempt at creating something better, presents itself many times before we are forced to move on. But what if we didn’t have to be forced to move forward? What if we chose to let go?

Our most important choices in life are not the ones with the smallest risk. They are often the ones where the stakes are the highest. These choices do not have quantifiable outcomes. The results cannot be measured with logic or justified with reason. They are choices that demand that we give everything we got.

We have to use our instincts, that quiet inner knowing. That trust in ourselves that is sustained by the belief that if we leap from the highest cliff, we are going to grow wings and fly…and that if we don’t, then we are strong enough to survive the fall. If we are ever going to have a life that matters we are going to have to live life fearlessly. ‘Cause some things in life come all or not at all.

From Nothing Comes Everything

25 Aug

One night my car died at 2 am on a 5 hour drive out of town. I had suspected it would. I had been trying hard to keep that car running. I figured the car wouldn’t last much longer but It just didn’t seem like the right time to get another one. Despite the fact that I had been contemplating getting rid of the thing, I hadn’t wanted the damn thing to breakdown on me.

Losing that car was one part of an entire series of me losing things. I had lost a relationship, an apartment, and a job. In truth, I felt more like they had been taken from me. So to have my car ‘taken,’ on top of all that, was more than I thought I could take.

It took a few days, but I found relief. I gave up and submitted to inevitability. It was sort of peaceful. I knew eventually I would replace all the things I had lost, but not having them had set me free. I was free to be brutally honest with myself about those things that had once been so important. What I realized was that none of those things had been the ideal that I had wanted. So what did it matter that I didnt have them? I think it was then when a seed began to grow inside me: my violet ambition. I decided I didn’t want to replace what I lost, I was going to skip the substitutions and get what I really wanted.

Judgment gets clouded when we are overly attached to people and things. We confuse consistency with quality. Because it’s always there we develop a sense of security from the familiarity. We dont fall in love with them, we fall in trust with them. We trust them to be exactly what we know them to be, no more or less. Regardless, of how unfulfilled we are by them, we begin to depend on them. Soon we forget how to live without them. Our dependence is built on the habits we build around the consistency of having them. And when the time comes to let them go, we can’t. Because we have forgotten (and dare not imagine) how to live without them.

The truth is that we are not just afraid to give up something we cherish, we don’t want to give up the security and comfort. We think there will be some empty void left if we them go. But sometimes peace is waiting in the absence of those people/things and at peace we find the will to reach into the void and create. From nothing comes everything.


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