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(no subject) [Nov. 13th, 2016|09:59 am]
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(no subject) [Aug. 4th, 2010|12:33 am]
Things have been pretty nice since coming to San Antonio. I'm much more comfortable here, and my mom's condo's right near Alamo Heights, so it almost feels like the whole city's one big house that I used to live in as a kid. I've been hanging out with Andrew a lot, and Robbie and Emma and Abuelita and Sarah are usually all there at Emma's house too, so we eat together. I'm getting him back into Magic: the Gathering and he built a deck out of some of Alex's old cards, which I think is more nice than depressing. Today was Andrew's birthday, so I got him some Magic boosters, and he's 21 so he went out to Austin to drink, but I stayed behind because I have a low alcohol tolerance and am not really a drinker. Or a bar person. Robbie tried to show me the algorithm for solving a Rubix cube (he can get it in 2 minutes!) and during dinner my dad argued with me that the "documentary" clips in The Fourth Kind were real. I was embarrassed for him.
Also got to see Alan and Rudy briefly for Rudy's going away party (although he's going to be in town for another week) but didn't stay long because I had a cough (I have recently recovered from it.) I don't think I've mentioned either Alan or Rudy on this, but they are a couple of guys Ashley made friends with over WoW who happen to live in San Antonio, and I've kind of co-opted them as my friends too, now. That's actually my best method of making friends. I'm happy about this because it's very rare that I make new friends. Also I got to see Sara for a little bit tonight, and hopefully we'll hang out more. I should really call Don and get together with him. He's not going to be doing therapy for a while, and I actually haven't put any effort into finding myself a new therapist. I may just go it alone or put it off until I'm moved into San Marcos.
Registered my classes at San Marcos (Algebra, Dev. Psych., Spanish, Ritual and Magic [anthro.]) and I have an apartment over there that I can move into on the 23rd. Classes start the 25th.
Hooray for pseudo-independence!
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(no subject) [Jul. 23rd, 2010|07:53 pm]
My car's totally not starting at all anymore. It went through a new battery in a day. I'm gonna see if I can get some salvage yard to buy it off me for parts.
Leaving in about 3 days. Still need to get a big suitcase and pack stuff. Excited, but I don't know if the move has sunk in yet.
I had to pick up a prescription today, so I was acquainted with the joys of public transportation. Had to wait out in the sun for a while. McDonald's smoothies are unurprisingly not that good.
Oregon's a strange, mystical, fairy-tale kinda place. I don't know if I can say it's been good to me, but it's certainly helped me to grow quite a bit. I'm gonna miss Ashley a lot but our romantic relationship was never all that healthy. I've got Alan, Sara, and possibly Andrew to hang out with (also, Don) when I get to San Antonio, and I'm confident that I can make some new friends in San Marcos. Also, Lalique's visiting in August.
I wish to shit my car worked so I could go out and say a proper goodbye to a few places around here, but it is not so. Maybe I'll visit again someday. If I do, I'll make it a point to go camping or something, finally.
Texas is a much more straightforward kind of environment. You can always see the sky and the horizon, and the sun beats down on you continuously until it sets dramatically. I've actually never seen San Marcos before, but I hear it's very scenic. I don't know if that compares with Oregon-scenic, but I bet it's still nice. A river apparently runs through the campus and you can take scuba-diving classes! I hope I can get the classes around the times I want to take them, but I may be scraping the bottom of the curricular barrel here.
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(no subject) [Jul. 17th, 2010|10:18 pm]
Watching The Squid and the Whale, and I like it, but I also think it's one of the most depressing/uncomfortable movies I've ever seen. It's like a Wes Anderson movie drained of all the irony and replaced with realistic consequences.
Also, I wouldn't have been surprised at a Velvet Underground song appearing in, it, but seriously, Street Hassle? AKA the most depressing song in the world?

Ohhhh, it was fucking produced by Wes Anderson. Okay.
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(no subject) [Jun. 12th, 2010|01:33 pm]
My iPod died so I compulsively bought a Dingoo A-320, which not only plays MP3's and movies, but works as a NES, SNES, GBA and GEN emulator. I'm hoping that the act of buying it will soothe emotional trauma.
The time for me to move back to Texas is getting closer and closer and as I start to get things prepared it makes it more real every day for me. Difficult difficult difficult. I'm kind of hoping there will be some problem and I won't be able to enroll at San Marcos and I'll get the opportunity to stay in Oregon and enroll in school next year, but it seems unlikely that it'll happen, and another part of me is excited to make a fresh start and be on my own as soon as possible.
My mom also got me a GPS navigator for my birthday a couple months ago, and it's so extremely useful it's changed my life. I used to get incredibly stressed out because I have a poor sense of direction and got lost frequently, but now I basically have a mini-map for reality. It's almost as good as the Ocarina of Time.
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(no subject) [May. 21st, 2010|04:25 pm]
So, for my cousin Alex's rosary/memorial service his brothers picked out two songs for him. The first is a country song about heaven and the second is The Flaming Lips' "Do You Realize?" I thought The Flaming Lips song was a strange and amusing choice. I wonder how everyone will react.

I'm also supposed to go up and read Psalm 100 which I don't get, because it seems to be a kind of happy, rejoicing psalm. I don't see the relevance, but maybe I'm one of a series of readers and it makes sense in context. Or it's some Catholic thing.
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(no subject) [May. 9th, 2010|12:48 pm]
Every time I doodle on something I know someone else is going to see, and the doodle is an actual representative drawing of something (say, Batman) I have to scratch over it completely when I'm done so no one can see it. I'm not this way about abstract doodles or shapes or whatever; just pictures. It most likely points to some sort of paranoid lack of confidence, but on the plus-side, I'm not in danger of breaking any Sharia laws.
... or at least getting caught for it.
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(no subject) [Apr. 18th, 2010|04:14 pm]
At this point in my life I really think that the essence of maturity, of growing up, of becoming a complete, or even an enlightened, person, can be generalized by the word "acceptance." If you've experienced something you know to be true, or if your rational mind or conscience is uncomfortable with what you're doing on an analytical or moral level, the necessary step is to investigate not what you would prefer to believe, or what best fits with your previous assumptions about the world, but what, objectively, you find to be true. Abraham Maslow called this kind of impartial state of mind "Being-Cognition," and revealed that this state is the foundation not only for an unfiltered experience of reality as it truly is (as opposed to the reality we see most of the time as a gigantic mass of things that may or may not fill our needs/wants) but for genuine and true love as well. He used another term for this state that I thought was really apt; "desireless awareness."
The problems we have with spirituality and religion in the West, I feel, have to do with a lack of Being Cognition. To reject all religion, to reject spirituality entirely, is to reject a facet of the human experience that is essential to growth. It's one of the three great taboo subjects of conversation or thought in Western Culture: God, Sex and Death.
I'm going to outline my personal experience of acceptance here, but I think it's something many many Americans struggle with as well. It has to do, more or less, with Christ. My impression is that talking about Christ makes people really uncomfortable, moreso even than talking about God. The reason, I think, has to do with the idea of the Jungian Shadow, and the prone-ness individuals have to being swallowed by it. Whenever you hear of a die-hard atheist suddenly becoming an evangelical Christian out of nowhere, or a literalist Christian abandoning all his beliefs to be an atheist, or any very drastic and sudden exchange of beliefs like this, I think the Shadow has a large role. The Shadow is an archetype (a resonant image present in every human being's unconscious mind) representing, easily enough, the opposite of who you are; the inverse of your ego or persona, holding all those points of view and opinions that you're so uncomfortable with that you may repress (unconsciously ignoring) or suppress (consciously ignoring). When we repress or suppress a feeling, attitude or idea, because it makes us uncomfortable (possibly because if it were true it would disrupt one's worldview, or even ego in totality) we feed the Shadow. This is especially true if one represses ideas one feels may have something to them. So thereby the lifelong die-hard atheist is in a specific danger of becoming an evangelical literalist Christian, the Christian in danger of abandoning all the dogma of a hierarchical religious system based on an exclusivist theology in change for something less rigid, like Buddhism, the life-long Buddhist in danger of accepting Islam for its more organized, disciplined structure, etc. This is what happens when we don't face or acknowledge our Shadow; it will swallow us whole. The atheist feels uncomfortable because he may intimate that there is something real being expressed in Christianity, so when the Shadow becomes too powerful for him to control, he'll flip to the polar opposite of his belief system, evangelical Christianity. He feels that the parts of religion that resonate unconsciously with him may have to be necessarily accepted within a larger framework. In short, the Shadow is everything we're not. Because the atheist suppresses one or two things he may feel have some truth to them, in the Shadow they become part of a framework for everything else he feels he is not. Therefore, instead of the healthy method of simply allowing one's self to be open to new points of view, regardless of how they conflict with one's worldview (this would be Being-Cognition) and making real objective TRUTH the criteria for what one holds as true, rather than comfort, the Shadow that's grown more and more powerful with each second truths are repressed, swallows him. Since he previously denied Christianity completely, he now has been claimed by Christianity,not a Christianity of truth, but a Christianity defined solely on what he was not. It's obviously not the best solution to trade one's entire belief system for its inverse, but it happens when one sees a few points of truth in a conflicting philosophy. When we don't at least acknowledge them, we run the risk of having our lives radically polarized just because our original worldview lacked something. I really hope I'm getting this point across clearly, here.
I feel many Americans are terrified to admit to the metaphysical reality of Christ they may have experienced because they feel that if they accept it, they're going to lose control of themselves and be sucked into a life of fagbashing Creationist TV-preacher Bible-thumping. Therefore, I think many feel that one must deny religion in totality, just on principle, because many aspects of it are faulty, repulsive, or just incredibly uncomfortable. The problem with this stance, however, is that it has nothing at all to do with what is objectively TRUE. I think anyone who has attended church on a regular basis at any point in their lives cannot deny that they felt something real there. To make this admission more comfortable, the atheist or secularist may rationalize that it was endorphins or childish naivete or the positive emotional energy of the congregation around them that caused such spiritual insight/inspiration. But the truth is, people go to church to experience a mystical state. Even the televangelists, as repulsive as their religious framework may be, are inspired by this state, that being a genuine experience of God, or Christ (although I don't think the literalists let this experience truly guide them, substituting its authority for a set of dogmas and the theology of a Bible stripped down to dead letters.)
So, my point: I personally was repressing the metaphysical reality of Christ ever since I stopped going to church as a kid. I would be okay with saying Jesus was an enlightened teacher, but Jesus is actually not all of what Christ is. What I mean to say is that I think I see the true meaning of the story of Christ. Because, regardless of what really happened historically, what we know about Jesus Christ is just a story now, but the story is still important (if not taken too literally.) Since reading about Quakerism, I feel I can more easily accept and see what is called the Eternal Christ. This is an experience of the Divine filtered through the archetype of man in union with God. The blood of Christ so central to the Atonement means the awareness of the Eternal we can see as human beings. The story of Jesus Christ we have now in the gospels is a reflection of this spiritual concept. Solely by the grace of God are we saved, through Christ. Even now, typing the previous statement makes me a little uncomfortable, because I know it to be true in a sense that I don't think most people see it. This has nothing to do with the idolatry of bowing to a rigid theology with a personal, Zeus-like god at its center. What it's saying is that the awareness we can cultivate in order to experience mystical contact with the True God (this would be Being-Cognition as well) is central to any sort of spiritual growth, and therefore human growth. We are all dependent on an ultimate reality here, and when we accept the archetype of the man in perfect communion with this Divine state, we work towards that ourselves. This all leads up to the torture and sacrifice Jesus suffers on the cross; the breakdown and eventual complete annihilation of the ego, a process that is extremely difficult and painful, but one that will bring us closer to God.
People reject Christ because they feel that if they accepted Christ, they'd have to take all these symbols literally, which would be absurd.
Anyway, my point is, Christ is real, but I feel many Americans are really uncomfortable with it because of the way Christ is presented so often in the more literalist forms of Christianity.I think it's an incredibly important topic to speak about because it is such an uncomfortable topic for so many. If an awareness of what our symbols really mean was brought to America, we may even be able to achieve a religious reform that would counter, or even destroy, this tendency toward literalism we see advancing so rapidly; this poisoned well that is keeping America in a state of spiritual stagnation.
It's also funny how I don't think many people have as much of a problem accepting Buddha or Krishna or the Tao as real and true here in America. Those concepts have less bearing on us, culturally, and their religions aren't as rigidly defined or literalist, so they're safer in many ways to accept than Christ might be. I think Christ is America's blind-spot; this is something we need to address in the light of full consciousness in order to move on spiritually, as a culture, and to rescue the truth from those who would distort and corrupt it.
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(no subject) [Apr. 10th, 2010|03:31 pm]
Okay, so there was that big huge story last year about all the members of the Anglican Church in England converting to Catholicism because they were uncomfortable with homosexual priests. Have they come back now that the Vatican has proven itself basically a den of pedophiles who molest children literally BY THE HUNDREDS and pedophile protectors? I mean, seriously, what the fuck?
Is atheism just Luther's theses for the 2000's then? Because it seems like the Catholic Church has done enough to warrant yet another Protestant Reformation by now. I guess it speaks volumes about the rituals and dogma they produce to understand that it hasn't splintered into a thousand sub-sects by now.
Also, I heard about this big Boy Scouts scandal where leaders of the Boy Scouts of America actually had fucking FILES on KNOWN PEDOPHILES and were taking measures to protect them from media exposure. Can't the government just fucking fire and then jail everyone in the administration who was involved in that? I mean, I was a scout! It makes me sick to think that I could have been fucking molested if I had a different scoutmaster. The scout troop was attached pretty closely to the Episcopal (same thing as Anglican) church I attended as a kid, though. And although they have had at least one pedophilia scandal in the past, they don't seem to have as much of a problem as the Catholic Church.
Or maybe I'm wrong and the world is just filled with secret child molesting psychopaths who purposefully move into positions where they can molest and rape over and over again.
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(no subject) [Apr. 3rd, 2010|11:42 pm]
I wonder if the big question is really when I, or any of us, will finally be mature/wise enough to consciously choose happiness over stimulation. Maybe this is what Jesus and Buddha meant by the whole give away all your possessions and follow me thing. Sometimes, I wish I'd been born Amish.
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