Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Summit

I have made it no secret that I have changed a lot in the last several years. Growing beyond what I had become in the 25 years prior. Experience and logical reasoning has been my teacher and base. I am again to a point in my life where my knowledge and understanding has shown me how much of myself and this world I still do not know and understand. I have reached the summit of one mountain only to find the next one reaching far out of view in the clouds. I have been in this position several times but this time is different. I find myself faced with two separate mountains in the clouds. The question now is what do I choose? Do have to choose? Can I choose both? I know that not taking another step leaves me where I stand atop a tiny foothill that once looked like the tallest mountain from the bottom. I know because of who I am I will continue up the next challenge no matter what direction I go.

It has taken me a lot of years to realize how lucky and blessed I have been. I have known from a very young age what my work career would be for the rest of my life. Because of this, human nature has taken me up the simple and easy path of focusing on that work. Diving in head long and ignoring nearly everything else in my life. There have been weekends where I hadn't left my computer chair for 48 hours straight. I didn't sleep and I didn't eat during this time. I also ignored the thoughts of what I wanted to do with my LIFE. Who I wanted to be. The idea of starting a family. All of this was easy to ignore and just push it off to thinking about it another day later on. That laziness has started to catch up with me. I am not a kid anymore and I need to start thinking not like a kid. A quote "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I felt as a child, I thought as a child. Now that I have become a man, I have put away childish things." Corinthians 13:11 - Also used in the movie 'Hackers' (I am a geek what would you expect). This calls in to question my adulthood and my level of responsibility. When I sit and look at my life away from work, I see why I am still standing on that little foothill, I see why I haven't reached the clouds. This realization is a blow to my moral. It is a pain that is hard to keep off my face. It is hard to keep it under my disguise and put on the mask I choose show the world. It it like I am dragging myself through this world without direction and without purpose. I keep looking for a reason to take that next step off one summit and start to make the trek up the next. Do I really need a reason?

Life, even as complicated as it has been to this point, looks very simple compared to the paths ahead. Looking back with greater understanding makes the mistakes and falls look like child's play. Maybe it has been so far. My understanding doesn't include to ability to label or describe such things and it is not yet my time or place to do so. My view of my past only strengthens my resolve to push forward, to become more than I am. To look ahead to the future and to get above the clouds ahead and see sunlight from a new perspective.

I have choices to make in my life. I can picture these mountains in my mind with tall shear rock faces. But they don't scare me like the previous mountain did. Like this is the path I was meant to be on and for some reason I feel like it doesn't matter what path I choose at this point. I feel like the two mountains I see are merely two parts of the same mountain and there is only one summit. Now it is time to start walking...


Andrew

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Rain

It rained yesterday evening. That isn't all that surprising this time of year in Arizona but it was the type of rain you could go play around in. A friend and I did just that. We walked out in to the rain and stood and let our selves get completely soaked. It reminded me of when I was younger and the spring rains would create huge puddles in the yard. The little ditches out behind the barn and along the field would over flow with a foot or better of water. The drive way would show signs of washing down in to the road. The smell of that rain and the cold water pelting me is some of my fondest memories.

I remember running around in the yard barefoot splashing in the puddles making them all muddy. Then jumping in them again to have the muddy watter splash up on your legs to make them all muddy. I used to find places where watter was running and build little dams to block the watter and force it to take other routes. Kicking water at my little brother. Just being a kid in the rain. I remember staying out for hours, getting soaked to the bone and dirty. It puts a smile on my face thinking about it. Last night wasn't everything I remember but it made me feel like a kid again. I even kicked at the water a few times. I stood barefoot in the rain and looked up and just let it fall on my face. I got soaked to the bone, even felt a little chilled (it was still 95+ degrees).

Playing in the rain was an experience I had taken for granted. When I got older I must have forgotten how much fun it was. Every time it rained it felt like it was a nuisance. Running between the house and the car and from the car to the store or school. Made you drive slower and more cautions. Through all of that I never even thought about the fun I had playing in the rain just a short few years before. I still think of myself as a kid a lot and times like these add to the feeling that I truly am. It is a great feeling that I never want to loose. With all the responsibilities, worries, wants, and desires we have as adults we all loose the kid we were. Holding on to some of that kid takes a lot of effort and times like this to remind us to be that kid. We should all find that one thing from childhood that we can hold on to. I now have the rain to add to my collection.


One more thing came to me when we were standing out there in the rain. A connection between all of us that never entered my brain before that moment. I don't even understand the linking between this thought and the time in the rain but it happened. In the moments I was looking up at the sky I realized we aren't all that different from each other in this world. It is an idea I have been thinking a lot about today. We all strive and believe we are completely individual. That there is no one else like us in the world. This idea puts this in to question as I believe we are more alike then we really want to admit.
I need to explain. It may not be easy but I am going to give it a shot. When I try and understand other people I almost always start with something I know about them and build on that to generate ideas about who they are and what they feel. This is an outside perspective of the other person and not who they really are. Somehow in all of this rain, it hit me that we are all the same on the inside. We are all made up of the same parts with just slight changes due to experiences we have but we all basically have the same emotions; joy, love, hate, anger, madness, laughter. We all feel the same way. This idea leads me to believe that I should start with myself as a base to build on to understand others. They don't seem as alien as they were to me before. Now that I write it down I can't explain it how I feel it and it doesn't seem like that outstanding of an idea. But for some reason I never thought of other people like this before. This is an idea that I will be continuing to expand as I go forward in my life and increase my understanding.


It rained on me yesterday and it was fun!!! :)

Andrew

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Faith

The past weekend I visited a church. It was the first time in a decade I had done so voluntarily. Weddings and funerals are about the only reasons I would step on holy ground. Even though I haven't visited a church of religion, it doesn't mean I have left my faith behind. Faith is a hard thing to describe for anyone. Those that have religion as there base have a solid starting point. Having faith without the religion is much harder to maintain. It takes hard work to constantly and actively think about what I believe, to update my own understanding of my beliefs. Religion seems to add to many guidelines to what faith is and means and what the faithful should do. I do not like these restrictive ideas that I remember growing up as a Catholic. My belief is that by even laying out such guidelines religion cuts people out because they don't fit the mold. Even at its simplest effect is creates the divides between people that lead to the destruction of other ways of life and done all in God's name. There have been more wars and death inflicted in this world in His name then any other reason. How can anyone ever have the understanding that God wanted them to kill everyone that doesn't believe like they do. Religion is flawed from its base because we as imperfect humans created it. Faith doesn't suffer from this same imperfection. Faith is not perfect because those that have it are also imperfect. We all make mistakes with the free will we have. We either learn and move on or we let them rule our lives and lose our faith.

So what is my faith, how can I describe it in a way it makes sense. First, I believe in a God. I don't believe he interacts with me on daily life scale. I believe in a God that is a grand schemer... He puts things in to motion only makes adjustments as needed to the scheme. At some point life was created on this planet. Somehow I can't believe it was just a random chance that the right chemicals and conditions were all just there at the right time in the right place. Interaction from something greater had to have occurred. God's interaction with the creation and upkeep of life to create what we are today been the foundation to many religions and it also the base for my own faith. Second, I believe in people and their ability to choose from right and wrong. The freewill to say no and yes and maybe. This freewill is what allows us to have faith. Without it what would the point of having faith.

I have spent a lot of hours thinking about faith this last several weeks. More so than normal at least. I am trying to define my faith further because I feel there is something missing in me and something tells me that this is the subject I need to work on to find it. We are all missing something at times in our lives... if and how quickly you find it is based on the effort you put in. Finding the right balance in your faith is a life long endeavor. I wish everyone luck. We all get to choose our own faith. Weather it be in science, religion, God, or gods. It is an individual thing and no two persons will have the same faith. My faith is mine and mine alone.

Andrew