One Billion Friends…

Facebook claims to have over one billion users. Every so often I have this thought:

If I asked each of my 300+ Facebook friends to send and accept friend requests to one-another, and also asked if they would make the same request with all their friends and so-on, and if all users were compliant, eventually one billion people would be interconnected.

25442814_571336006544617_3599500953099282041_n

Of course, if this did happen, scrolling through status updates over coffee each morning would take a bit longer.

When I think about this more seriously though, I can’t help but wonder if social media isn’t an evolutionary step toward that universal oneness – a global consciousness in process, which is the direction I believe we are all ultimately headed in anyway.

I don’t mean that in a trite way.

25151853_568051840206367_3018757829771883589_n

Of course, I don’t truly expect to have a billion social media friends anytime soon, or to know what one billion people are thinking at any one time. I have a hard enough time coping with 300 opinions, let alone a billion.

I do think on some level though, that a digital imprint — a collection of all our thoughts is manifesting via social media, and is an actual step toward that universal oneness.

Global consciousness, coming to a server near you… Jchiacb

#siliconeternity

___________________________________________

If you are not already a subscriber, please scroll up and do so. Tell your friends about me — about what happens when I push the STOP button on the blender in my head. Oh, and there’s this little gem from  Royk Erickson. Enjoy…

 

Star Friends…

Star Friends…

Stare at a star, and be in wonder. Stare long enough, and it will disappear, only to reappear – over and over again. Well call this flickering.

There. Gone. There. Gone.

But we’re not always staring right at that star. Our eyes get distracted. They lose focus, or turn their attention to other stars. That distraction or that loss of focus is why they flicker. The star is there all the while. It’s only our attentiveness the star’s presence which accepts its illumination.

I think about many of my social media friends this way. I accept you into my life with wonder. There’s a reason you are my friend. Sometimes you disappear though, often for long periods of time. You disappear because I lost focus or became distracted.

unnamed

Unlike the star though, sometimes you disappear because you got distracted or lost focus. The odds of you flickering have now doubled.

Friends are there all the while. It’s only out attentiveness, or not, to each other’s presence which accepts our illumination.

So, you friend, if I lose my focus or get distracted, forgive me. I still look at you with wonder… Jhciacb

___________________________________________________________

If you are not already a subscriber, please scroll up and do so.  Tell your friends about me — about what happens when I push the STOP button on the blender in my head. Oh, and there’s this from The Trashcan Sinatras.  Enjoy…

Toxicity, people, and how I cope: The nutshell version…

Every morning I wake up and allow myself to be punched right in my psyche, hit by the negativity of some people in my online community.  Not only do I allow this, I set myself up for it.  With each fresh morning I open my 17” LCD window to the world, and allow myself be soiled by people I call friend.

Soon after, I begin asking myself, why do I do this…?  Why do I grant access into my consciousness, to toxic personalities pushing such heavy loads…?  It can sadden me, depress me, influence the direction of my day, and can change my perspective of life – all by 6:00 a.m.  Still, I do it day after day.

Gasses spew, but I am prepared...

Gasses spew, but I am prepared…

I know who I am.  I know who I wish to be.  I try to be who I really am as often as I can, though many times throughout the day I ignore my compass and allow myself to drift.  I find myself led off course by my own fears, and by the influence I allow others to have over those fears.  I work hard though, to stay centered and on track, and I guess I do a fair job of it.

When I attempt to answer my own question, about why I allow the negativity of others into my life, and why I keep those people there, the answers are complicated.  I guess I see it this way:  That the universe has brought those people into my life to begin with, and there is no denying they exist within my life, so they must be there for a reason(s).

They become my external friend first, but in time can become my internal enemy – but that’s on me, not on them.  I do little to dissuade their toxicity and negative energy.  I simply ignore it, and store it.  I do very little online arguing since I have seen nothing good ever come of this.  I have my opinions, others have theirs.

I ask myself: Are these people in my life to test me, to teach me, to hurt me, or to offend me…?  Not sure.  Mostly I think they are in my life to ground me – to remind me of who I am, who I am not, and who I might turn out to be, relative of course, to who I hope to turn out to be.

I think people who exhibit single-mindedness, who spew hatred, who can argue without ever listening, and who use social media as their outlet are speaking from a place of fragility and fear so deep that they themselves may not even know it’s there.  In that sense I feel for them – that they are so damaged they may not even know they are damaged, or why.  At least I know where my damage comes from.

I try hard not to judge people for these behaviors, as I hope I am not judged by others for the simple act of being myself.

At the end of the day I believe in an absolute universal oneness.  I genuinely believe that we are all interconnected — that everyone else is me, and I am them.  Maybe not in this life, but in the life next door, in the life down the road, or in the life I will live three lives from now.

I take it all with a grain.  I meditate to keep myself centered.  I exercise to keep my head clear.  I write to honor my creative gift.  I also listen without judgment because the voice coming my way might be my own voice someday, or may have already been.  Wishing you peace this day…  rc

____________________________________________________________________________________________

Please check back in two weeks to see what happens when I push the “stop” button on the blender in my head.
Oh, and there is this by Sweden’s Hellsingland Underground.    Enjoy…

Day After Day, I Keep Waking Up….

I will be on vacation in Colorado and the wilds of Northern Nebraska until the end of the month, so this is my last column until mid-August. 

___________________________________________________________________

“Humans are just a stage in the emergence of amazing complexity in the universe.” Martin Rees

Destiny, And The Big Picture

I’ve become obsessed with contemplating the increasing complexity and interdependency, in Darwinian terms, of societies and biology, and of how well intermingled they are – yet not necessarily parallel.   That’s a big-picture obsession.  To a lesser degree, I obsess on my own increasing complexity – because it’s a story which could have ended long ago.

And as I see myself grow more complex and increasingly interdependent with others, I still don’t know what I am destined to be within the expanse of my life, but I can say with great clarity at this moment, I am destined to be, and that’s a very little-picture statement.

A Letter To A Friend

I don’t wear a helmet when I ride my bike.  I love the wind through my hair when I ride at high speeds – it’s the rush of pure physical freedom.  Last month a concerned friend saw me riding in Fallbrook without a helmet and sent me an email to call me out on it.   She explained that her husband fell off his bike recently and his helmet probably saved his life.  I told my friend, based on that story, that I would begin wearing a helmet immediately – though I truly did not want to.  A couple of days later I bought a helmet, but never put it on.  Who was she, to tell me how to live my life…?

Below is a letter I sent to my friend this morning:

_________________________________________________________________________

Hi Danielle –

A while back I pledged to you I would begin wearing a bike helmet ASAP, and that I would prove it to you by sending you a picture of the helmet. And then, my life went very dark for a while.  “Fuck-it” was my attitude.  Things weren’t going well for me at all, and seemed to get worse every day.  One thing I could depend on each day though, was the wind through my hair as I rode to and from work – as exhilarating to me as any sensation I have known, and yes, I said ANY.  And deep down Danielle, there is a part of me that would be perfectly ok with being taken out by a truck.

Two nights ago I was riding down Green Canyon Road after work, and riding as fast I have ever been on that road.  On a straight section of the road, a truck passed me then suddenly crossed in front of me, and went off the road and into a tree.  It took less than 3 seconds for me to pass those tire tracks –3 seconds.

Before I left my studio that night, I bobbled my key in my hand for about 3 seconds. Now I know that if I had not bobbled that key, and had left 3 seconds earlier and been between that truck and that tree, I would have been killed, helmet or not.  But if the truck had hit my tire, front or back, and knocked me off my bike, who knows – vegetable soup..?

I’m sorry I did not keep my promise to you, but if you ever see me ride without a helmet again, call me out on it, please.

roy

_________________________________________________________________________________

I have some bad hair days ahead of me...

Destiny, And The Little Picture

The driver of that truck was ok, called a tow truck, and did not want me to stick around.  I was trembling so much I could barely keep my feet on the pedals of my bike as I rode the final miles to my house.  All that evening I kept thinking about bobbling that key.  What, I thought, would have happened if I had left my studio 2, or 3, or 4 seconds earlier…? I would have been right were that truck was. 

One could play a futile head game of destiny that, if I had been in that spot 3 seconds ahead, perhaps the driver would have seen me there, steered away from me, and I would have actually saved him from swerving and hitting the tree.  But a more likely scenario exists where I could have been tenderized, pureed, or both.  There’s just no tellin’…

I don’t know what destiny is anymore.  I have survived a parachute malfunction, a lightning strike, the foolish act of jumping into a class IV rapid after a beer-based breakfast, driving a truck with an unknown rattlesnake under the driver’s seat, being thrown into a jetty by a wave that refused to close out, and a few other self-induced brushes…  Still, I carry on.

Biology expands.  Societies expand.  Time and the universe expand.  And at the end of the day, for some reason, the story of me continues to expand.  It’s not just me who’s lucky to be alive though, it’s you too.   I’m curious, please use the comments section and share your “lucky to still be here” stories.  They may be used in a future essay or series of essays.  Be well.  rc

Oh, and there is this, from Dog Trumpet, the modern day decedants of Mental As Anything.  Enjoy…