philosophy

ON SAFETY AND OPPORTUNITY

With freedom comes independence, individuality and self-expression. To ensure that we enjoy this freedom, we protect said freedoms. Safety in our jobs, money, insurance, relationships and more. Despite all this, do we ever feel completely safe or ever insured that the walls we build will withstand the storms of life?  

Great cities of old bear testimony to life’s sorrowful realities. What stood must at a time fall. Your next step could be your biggest mistake, you don’t control the bigger cause and effect realities that surround your life. From the small life threating diseases to the next nuclear bomb, we are left feeling defenseless, fearful and at most filled with unrest.

Life growing up isn’t as promising as it was sold. We never really have enough information to make the right solid decisions over the course of a life time. We can try to hold back all these detrimental forces of life but, soon enough, we are shadowed and engulfed by the chaos and madness. 

All the things we think, feel and have placed our safety are as King Solomon puts it as “chasing the wind” and the weight of living hits us and we see and realise how desperately venerable we all are.

 

Our hold on life should as such and should be loose, grateful and instead of seeking total safety, we must see grandness of opportunity. Being mindful of this is helpful but, being able to live with it is another task.

Deep down, we all feel weak and hurt, mostly when our cheerful expectations go south, but to embrace a hold on the uneasy realities of life and turning them into opportunities of fortune, individuality and societal growth is our truest and greatest stronghold. 

Enduring doesn’t make you strong nor does crying make you weak. How we act and take hold of the opportunities are what makes us conquerors.  As Emerson wrote: “what lies behind us and what lies in front of us pales in comparison to what lies within us.” And that’s life’s greatest opportunity. 

His paper on ‘self-reliance” holds a bitter sweet strong but bright shining message, we can all learn from through life’s unforgiving dark storms. 
Here’s what he says in his essay Self-Reliance;

 “A man should learn to detect and watch that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the lustre of the firmament of bards and sages…
There is a time in every man’s education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance; that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for better, for worse, as his portion; that though the wide universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given to him to till.”
“The virtue in most request is conformity. Self-reliance is hate. It loves not realities and creators, but names and customs. Being a self-reliant man and having strength means one must be a nonconformist. 
He who would gather immortal knowledge and skill must not be hindered by the name of goodness, but must explore if it be goodness. Nothing is at last sacred but the integrity of your own mind. Know yourself, and you shall have the right and power to overcome the world.”

paraphrased

“Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t”

– Rodgers

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ON LEARNING TO MAKE BETTER MISTAKES

Failure is as much a part of life as success. Whether you let it consume you or use it to make a better you. To make “better mistakes” is not just an act in itself but, should be a reflection of a universal attribute we should all have and always cultivate.
“Greek tragedy” is a perfect representation of the reality of failure. Failure does happen to all and it can happen to anyone, good or bad. This should make us not only be calmer to give the proverbial answer of shit happens” when failure comes, but this should make us kinder and loving to everyone despite their shortcomings.
Throughout history, man has greeted failure differently. From death, loss, despair to triumph, growth and lesson. In truth, humanity has had a long history of screwing up. In view of lessons learnt from failure, the general world view isn’t entirely welcoming to the concept of making “better mistakes”.
Failure is seen as detrimental and engulfing one’s value center, one is nothing if they don’t succeed or make something great happen. A common theme in ancient roman was seeing failure as not an option, success is all that matters, it’s here and now and the true signs of success are money, power, strength and respect, which in turn brought a lot of frustration and guilt around failure if not achieved.
Failure was understood as being accompanied by shame, great guilt and depression. The only true way of bearing this shame of failure was to literally kill one’s self. From time passed, the world has a broken definition of success and failure. Nobility and money are equaled to success as failure is equaled to unproductiveness and unintelligence. Despite the misconceptions surrounding the possibility and attitudes around failure, there is a lot to learn from it.
We will all fail at one point in our lives, despite whatever the definition of success or failure is. Failure is part of the journey to success but, how can we take the highway and learn from failure.

HERE ARE SOME LESSONS TO BE LEARNT FROM FAILURE
1. Success isn’t everything, hard work will not betray you.
Edison once said that it was ten thousand failures led him to success in inventing the light bulb. This is mostly quoted in relation to encouragement, not giving up but, it also surprisingly speaks about hard work. In truth, if you work to the best of your ability, do whats required and still fail you really have nothing lost.
We don’t have total control of what happens but, we do have control of how to react to what happens. Choose to have an attitude that treasures the way to your goal, just as much as achieving or not achieving your goal. Shit does happen.
2. What doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger (in this context anyway)
Famously said by Fredrick Nietzsche, reality is failure, in most of modern life that doesn’t mean death or a need for suicide. It may mean that you may not be well because of the failure, but its a new day, new opportunity, and new time to learn from your old ways build and be a better you. It may take you a lot of attempts but keep at it. Many people don’t get to where there are without little or a lot of failure, here and there.

A failure is a project that doesnt work, an initiative that teaches you something at the same time the outcome doesnt move you directly closer to your goal.
A mistake is either a failure repeated, doing something for the second time when you should have known better, or a misguided attempt (because of carelessness, selfishness or hubris) that hindsight reminds you is worth avoiding.
We need a lot more failures, I think. Failures that dont kill us make us bolder, and teach us one more way that wont work, while opening the door to things that might. 

Seth Godin

3. Failure teaches you to never give up, Success doesn’t come cheap.
It’s easy to smile, be glad and very content when you are always winning. Its boring  really… but, when you have adversity and when you do your best and if you lose, the fun can be the chase, really. And when you do succeed after all the fighting it definitely feels worth it.
Success is the ability to go from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm, said Sir Winston Churchill. Success has its roots in believing in one’s self and not deciding to quit, but striving to do better, be better and be wise.
Henry Ford was the inventor of the assembly line and American-made cars, he didn’t have an instant success. His early businesses failed and left him broke five times before he founded the successful Ford Motor Company. So you failed once and want to give up, shame on you.

 Final thought
Life is a journey, life is truly what you make it. You may have to climb mountains, cross deserts, swim through seas to get what you want and as long as you are human, you will have your less than impressive moments, setbacks but, what you decide to do will make a hell of a difference to get to where you are going.

I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I cant accept not trying.

Michael Jordan

Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.

Henry Ford

ON THE PSYCHOLOGY OF SELF 

​”How people experience themselves affects every moment of their existence. Their self-evaluation is the basic context in which they act and react, choose their values, set their goals, meet the challenges of life. Their responses to events are shaped in part by who and what they think they are-how competent and worthy they perceive themselves to be.

 Of all the judgments they pass in life, none is more important than the judgment they pass on themselves. To say that self-esteem is a basic human need is to say that it makes an essential contribution to the life process, that it is indispensable to normal and healthy development, that it has value for survival. 

Without positive self-esteem, psychological growth is stunted. Positive self-esteem operates, in effect, as the immune system of consciousness, providing resistance, strength, and a capacity for regeneration.”

Nathaniel Branden
The book “The psychology of self-esteem” by said author is an exploration into the idea of Self-esteem not just a “feel good concept but, Nathanial Branden also shows instead how self-esteem, rationality, perseverance, self-responsibility, and personal integrity are all intimately related.
Self-esteem calls to light an attention to building an authentic and grounded sense of self, rather than an over-inflated and unrealistic self-perception. Montaigne’s three key ways that people feel inadequate or lack self-esteem are through: discomfort with their bodies, unease at being judged and feeling intellectually inferior.
Now people of course, make a strong distinction between self-esteem and self-confidence. The difference being whether you believe youre worthy of respect from others (self-esteem) and whether you believe in yourself (self-confidence).
In the end, both amount to the same thing,
Now one of the keys to truthfully and authentically being yourself and embracing your being is recognizing that youre a dynamic process, a growing being  not a fixed thing. You are a work in progress or a progressive entity and in order to properly and confidently do so self-esteem is but a must.
It goes without saying but self-esteem hones in important aspects of yourself that makes you – you. One can’t live or enjoy life with his own self approval, self-appreciation and ultimately these all add up to self-esteem.
We live in a world where everyone is a critic, you included. With self-esteem, you embrace yourself and with that comes embracing “the weakness of strength”, which means we acknowledge both the reality of the weakness and strength dwelling within us.
No one’s perfect. People and yourself will talk whether you do good or bad, right? So self-esteem comes into build a wall which makes you live with who you choose to be and be comfortable and confident about it, rather than let the chaos of your mind and others hold you captive.
Self-esteem is the greatest reminder as to why you do what you do. This means as such where the seat of your self-worth dwells.
We all feel scared, we all feel misunderstood and that we just don’t fit in but, self-esteem comes in to both agree and disagree to all these in the greater sense.
Self-esteem says “be yourself, love yourself and you will never know yourself until you just be you, learn and grow. Dont over or under think it. Being the best you can be is all that matters come success or failure.”
Only you can love yourself fully and truly. You have a will and you have that sense of consciousness, the power is indeed in your hands. No one wants to beat themselves up for no reason or for times when they didn’t know better. So instead take time to nurture and appreciate you for the basic fact that you are you.
Never let anyone steal your joy, not even you. Only when you accept yourself are you able to change you, knowing full well one should and is never defined by one’s past actions or thoughts.
Self-esteem improves by changing both your thoughts and behaviors. You must practice new thoughts and behaviors until you begin to turn the tide of your feelings about yourself. And you must continue practicing them to maintain a healthy love for yourself.
Begin making choices and decisions based on what you want, what is sound and good for you, not what you think others want for you is what the psychology of self-esteem is all about.

ON THE MELANCHOLY OF LIFE

​Believe me, every heart has its secret sorrow which the world knows not; and oftentimes we call a man cold, when he is only sad. 

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

The idea behind the word melancholy is that it involves feelings of a degree or genre of sadness inherit to the fact that life is truly unfair and difficult and that suffering, injustice are part of life and the big universal expression and experience. 

Melancholia, in the past was considered one of the four temperaments in pre-modern medicine and proto-psychology, representing a state of low mood or depression. As at now, a person suffering from melancholic depression, life often seems meaningless or without purpose.

It is normal to want to be happy, to encourage happiness and love but, in truth we must admit to ourselves and others that indeed most of life is about grief, pain and loss. It is said that the good life is not one without suffering but one that contributes to our strength and development.

The melancholy expresses the reality that one must not be grim, miserable or alone but grasping without rage, wrath or confusion the facts of life and one must know that its rare to find a solid perpetual inner peace and that its hard to live comfortably with anyone, as well as the person we love – the good may have a hard time, the bad may be as free as a bird.

We see the world, the news – hear, read and know of peoples suffering but as much as we sorrow, sorrow as well at our own lot, we in a way regret that we are powerless to do anything and we are saddened by the mindless hurt, that can be a heartbreaking thought. 

Being betrayed, hurt, abused, misunderstood seem to be what we see and feel mostly. Life is such a shit storm, we may desire to look for answers and its not surprising that in such moments people want to take the pain away through drugs, sex, religion or whatever it is and who can blame them.

Sadness does sometimes makes sense. We learn so late about stuff, wishing to go back, change one’s actions. We feel like we have wasted time and yes we all have. The melancholy attitude makes us regret less, to not let us be held by our small and big screw ups, this is wise as opposed to that of bitterness, pain and misery making home in our hearts.

Having a melancholy mind rests in the idea that your sorrow isn’t felt alone and isn’t all about you. You are not in pain alone, your suffering belongs to humanity as a whole past, present and future. To absorb this breeds an attitude of selflessness, compassion and empathy. 

One becomes the “bigger man” which sadly is a rare virtue in our time. This idea of suffering in life shouldn’t make us desperate and lost but more forgiving, stronger, kinder and better able to focus on what really matters with the time we have.

“You can’t always go back and change but you can move forward and improve.”

ON LEARNING HOW TO DIE

​”Why should I fear death? If I am, death is not. If death is, I am not. Why should I fear that which can only exist. When I do not?”

Epicurus

The subject of death isn’t exactly a comfortable one to anyone, but this exact fact is true and a shame in itself. The idea of loss and pain be as it many is life as is, we all do have every right to resist and to sweep the issue under the rag is but, a common emotional defense mechanism.
 
The very idea of death has a way of paralyzing and drowning our minds. Death is a reality and despite it being a hard pill to swallow, the best we can do as mortal beings is confront the issue, be of comfort and learn to make the best out of the life that we have now.

Whether you subscribe to an afterlife or not, when the idea of death roams the mind of someone, its common to have thoughts about;

– What one has done so far with their life?

 – What is being done and what is being planned to be done with their life?

– One wonders is it meaningful? 

– That if after I kick the bucket as they say, is it going to matter that I was here?

Of course, all these encompass a plethora of answers but, really do have a core theme about them. Like many people, I sometimes feel uneasy that one day I will die, that my family and friends. All my loved ones will as well and we will all be non-existent but, its reality. 

It is also a petty that the only real time we do give some thought to death is when someone dear to us is gone or almost left, we start thinking about what does it means, and then the thought of our own death ensnares our minds but, to know youre going to die and be prepared for it at any time, thats a better and healthier way to face this reality.

Far too often, we want a world of comfort and peace. We want to distract ourselves from what matters, what needs to be addressed and attended too because, to acknowledge what matters is an acknowledgement that we hardly conceive of it. Having a healthy and mindful approach toward death is important and necessary that way you can be actually be more involved in your life while youre living.

 Every day, that inner voice or dialogue you have with yourself that asks, Am I being the person I need to be? Is today the day? Am I ready to expect the unexpected reality of death? Am I ready to embrace death? Am I being the person I want and need to be before death comes?

Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live. Most of us walk around as if were sleepwalking or on autopilot. Learning how to die means we bond so strongly with every event and moment in our lives. 

We appreciate every sunset, sunrise, every walk, every phone call from our parents, every conversation with our friends, every quiet moment of reflection, every culinary delight, every simple pleasure, every sweet sound, every moment of smile and bliss.

Each instant of life would be laced with urgency and passion, memory and attention, of course we can’t remember every second and moment but, the essence of it is what we should truly grasp. We should remind ourselves of the significance that every human experience can yield and cherish each moment. Loving the good and learning from the bad.

We should pinch ourselves regularly as a reminder to appreciate the moments and people we hold dear before death arrives. We should make all days and events meaningful and memorable, monotonous ones as well and as such we choose to make more meaningful steps to make our lives, people’s lives and our future generations lives better than ours. 
By living each day as if it were our last, we relate to each life experience passionately, powerfully with embracing purpose.
Thinking about the future, we should realize that life isn’t endless and we only get to do it once. This realization is striking and should give us the desire and thought that now is a good time as any to take inventory, introspection and make clarity on things that we want to accomplish and experience in the future, when the time is right as life permits.

Although some days feel like an eternity and its easy to take life’s routine for granted, the reality is that time moves us, and if we aren’t conscious and honest with ourselves about what we want our lives to be and embrace the reality of death in ourselves and others, chances are our lives will be met with confusion, regret and heartbreak.

I don’t know what happens after we die and as far as am concerned nothing, but I do know that we have a responsibility and moral duty to ourselves to take charge, to make the best of our abilities and time as we live on earth. To do otherwise is selling ourselves short and taking the life you have for granted.

Learn and figure out what is truly important to you and create a plan to accomplish it. Make a difference in the world and engage in fulfilling tasks. Spend time with the people you care about and don’t live in fear of life passing by or let the reality of death keep your life inactive but, be aware that you are alive and be an active participant in it.
 

Chart your course, be your boss and fight the good fight. It’s never too late to alter its direction, as long as there’s life there is hope. The most important fact of all is that life isnt about anything except the meaning given underneath it, as well as to it and death is a reality to be embraced and accepted.

“Its not the days in our life but the life in our days”

“Those who have lived a good life do not fear death, but meet it calmly, and even long for it in the face of great suffering. But those who do not have a peaceful conscience, dread death as though life means nothing but physical torment. The challenge is to live our life so that we will be prepared for death when it comes.”

Anonymous 

BRIDGING THE GAP

​There is little chance of success in your ventures, plans, projects or business without a well thought out executed strategy or well applied action. However, beautiful the strategy you have to look at results drawing toward your goal as this is just as important.

Everyone begins as a rookie or novice. Every Individual, business, empire starts with a vision or goal. No doubt, a vision is a good thing. Like a journeyman or traveller, the vision is your desired outcome and the North Star guides you to your desired point of interest.

Your strategy is your map and involves a designed plan of action. A vision is nothing without execution. Taking action is just as important as the plan made or the success desired. Deliverance is the spotlight moment, the do or die moment as to whether the plan goes as planned.

The execution is vital. Strategy involves a conscious decision to move from your current position to the one you have envisioned. It requires you to take the steps needed in order to achieve the goal.

There are a lot of numerous examples of people who moved from point A to point B. Point plan to point achievement by taking good effective action. Yet there are also more examples of people running out of steam and becoming stagnant or going backward during execution.

Sometimes, the problem isn’t that the strategy is wrong or because it is outdated and circumstances change, of course one can never truly see or determine the consequences of one’s choices. But the most likely cause lies in the failure to properly execute the strategy.

Bridging the gap between the strategy and the goal is the most difficult in any venture. Rudy Giuliani says “Change is not a destination, just as hope is not a strategy”. Anyone can work hard when you feel like it or are feeling super motivated or if life is basically going well for you but, what about when you get bored? The journey feels hard as it usually does.

What separates losers and winners when genetics, talent, luck or resources mean little? Top performers in any act embrace the daily practice that requires mastery of their act and simply deciding not to change course, following the North Star, adopting and never giving up –no matter what. So true execution comes from embracing execution through the daily grind.

So of course, Rome wasn’t built in a day and execution is just as important as the plan and the results you hope to see and in one way or another better than the goal itself. 

Take for instance, mountain climbing, the thrill of it all isn’t reaching the top per se but, battling and overcoming the elements, overcoming the self and embracing the constant zest and zeal of the unknown, no turning back but, being in constant motion. 

For it is true, as with life, goals and desired results only begin out of the comfort zone. To move from strategy to execution in all aspects of one’s life makes “a man worth his word” 

“All men can see the tactics whereby I conquer, but what none can see is the strategy out of which victory is evolved…Strategy without tactics is the slowest route to Victory, tactics with strategy is the noise before defeat”

– Sun Tzu

DAILY LIVING

​How do we listen to our hearts? What kinds of insights or aid is required to be authentic? How do we embrace the daily grind? The monotony of daily living without regrets, managing our despair and other general ailments?

Existentialist Martin Heidegger’s reply is that everyone comes equipped with an existential conscience that calls to them to live authentically. This conscience turns out to be you talking to yourself about yourself.

This conscience is you trying to shake the part of you lost in the crowd, yourself out of its conformity. When you heed the call of your conscience, you take a necessary step toward embracing yourself and living authentically.

Your existential conscience shakes you from the inauthentic life of the crowd by reminding you of your guilt, which in turn, points out to you your responsibility for taking ownership of what you are as a self or as a being. What this means is that your conscience wants you to own up to the fact that as an existing, choosing, self-determining being, you’re incomplete in some key ways.

The possibilities available to you for self-definition aren’t limitless; in fact, the options you have are structured by the historical and cultural world you’re born into and you can’t simply make all the possibilities available to you, it’s an inescapable reality.

“Think of the call of conscience like a phone call. On one end, you have the person dialling (the caller). That’s you. But it’s the you who’s always in there, in your life, always capable of authenticity (no matter what you do, unless you magically turn into a stone or an animal, this part of yourself is always present). That self always capable of authenticity is the caller. We call it the “You-Self.””-Greg Gale

The You-Self (person you want to be) is dialling up the you who is presently lost in the crowd. It must: Heidegger says the call can’t be addressed to the They-Self. The They-Self is the self of the everyday — the self within you that represents the voice of the crowd. 

The They-Self is the everyone-self that has no identity of its own, the identity you take on when you become steeped in your conformist routines. The They-Self actually avoids the call. In fact, as Heidegger puts it, in the call of conscience the They-Self “gets passed over in this appeal.”

Just to be clear the existential conscience calls you to recognize your guilt — not moral guilt, the difference between the two is that Moral guilt typically acts as a spotlight of sorts. The former results from performing some shameful action, and the latter points to an absence of something in you. 

When you steal or lie, moral guilt pains you because it makes apparent your lack of honesty. Moral guilt makes clear to you that you’re incomplete or limited in some important way.

In contrast, existential guilt doesn’t point to an action, but to you as a being. Moral guilt points to a lack in you that causes that action, but existential guilt points to an absence that’s a fundamental and an essential part of what you are as an existing being. The lack that moral guilt points to should be filled in; the lack that existential guilt points to should be embraced.

To be completely assured that your choice is right, you need to be able to step outside any context that may influence your way of looking at things. What you want is a timeless, “God’s-eye” view of your situation. 

From this standpoint, you could objectively and dispassionately sort through the possible options and figure out which option is right. Heidegger’s point, however, this is when you truly see what you are, you see that this will never happen. You can never step outside your biased framework to see with assurance what’s objectively right or the one true choice.

Heidegger’s point here is that, as a self-defining being, you have to make choices within an historical and cultural framework — one that structures not only what’s possible for you, but also how you think about those possibilities. 

What’s possible for you, in a given situation? Whatever is in your situation, you don’t share the same world or the same history as everyone else. You would inevitably respond differently even to the same situations.

Being a self-defining being daily requires recognising that one is “thrown” into a certain historical situation, a certain time period, a certain culture, and a context that makes a specific set of lives possible. Heidegger thinks that although this does function as a limit, because your power of self-definition is indeed limited, it isn’t something to complain about. 

Instead, it’s the very ground of your freedom. To want to create yourself from the ground up should be seen as inauthentic, essentially obscuring and refusing to face up to the fact that your human existence is a situational one. All lives have a context in which they should be understood.

One as such makes a resolve to embrace their death and view the seriousness of one’s choice as joined together with one’s past, heritage, and selection of possibilities. This joining involving your past and future, birth and death is now expressed in the way you act in and see the present. 

Your life as a whole is unified and self-driven; your present situation and your action make sense in a story that connects your past, your present and your future. This means you daily are an authentic individual. You have to keep it up and keep marching on. This is in a sense, who we are daily and anything else does mean we are living inauthentically. 

FREDRICK NIETZSCHE ON CHALLENGING ONESELF

​Critics of Nietzsche accuse him of being an elitist who was obsessed with greatness and with the creation of the Übermensch (or superman). He believed great individuals go beyond good and evil to accomplish their ends as such, this fuelled a lot of Nazi ideas of fascism.

The Übermensch is largely misunderstood but, is more of an individual and spiritual goal. Nietzsche calls himself the Übermensch (which means superperson or overman, the person who is beyond the form of current humanity)  has yet to exist on earth.

Nietzsche says, Live dangerously! Build your cities on the slopes of Vesuvius! Send your ships into uncharted seas! Live at war with your peers and yourselves! He instead challenges us live passionately, to challenge ourselves and to always push the envelope.

Nietzsche doesnt actually mean that you should literally sell your home and rebuild on the slopes of an active volcano but, life is no fun without risk and challenge through self-mastery. Nietzsche thinks of self-mastery as a kind of art. 

He says, Only one thing is needful; to give style to ones character  a great and rare art! In a sense, when you strive to be an individual, you are at the same time the artist and the mound of clay. You fashion yourself into a sculpture. You look at the desires that compose you and decide what goal or aim you want to see for your life. 

This self-formation requires choice. You have to decide that the clay should take on some particular shape as opposed to some other. Self imposes upon desires a sense of style by making them conform to that self-chosen shape. Nietzsche doesnt mean the imposition of some contemporary style but, a notion of style as expressive of ones individual creative and aesthetic nature.

This ability to give style to your own person requires a lot of inner strength. Treating yourself as a work of art isnt easy. Organizing your life in accordance with a purpose or meaning that reflects your own unique individuality. Only in this way can you be said to truly control your own self. Nietzsche thinks of this person as a noble”.

Being a self requires unifying those warring desires under a central purpose or meaning. So being a self requires mastering yourself by giving your desires a common direction. Challenging self requires the activity of mastering your desires and ordering them around a choice that expresses the meaning youve given your life.

True power seeks to develop internal beauty as a result we must embrace challenge. Truly honouring your purpose in life is living it passionately  pushing it to go faster and faster, each time pushing it, and yourself, to the limit.

Embracing change means exposing yourself to new and different perspectives. This is challenging oneself at best.

Greg Gale put it, Read a book on a subject that completely disagrees with the way that youve chosen to live your life. Learn about your history. See whether youre the victim of self-deception.

Seek to unsettle yourself; shake up what you think and believe. When youre in public, seek out the kinds of people who disagree with you passionately, and talk to them. Cultivate friendships with these kinds of people. Surround yourself with the seeds of your own destruction.

 Nietzsche once claimed, I am not a man, I am dynamite! Well, if youre dynamite, surround yourself with matches. Love the ashes that through it you build your empires.

Life will always be an uphill battle, whether you realise now or not and in true fashion, Nietzsche to put it bluntly in a modern sense says Fight the Power. He views a good and excellent life as one thats always put at risk. Thats the only way to truly value and honour life.
Are you ready to be a warrior for your self-created identity and goal? Can you subject your identity to that kind of battle? Do you love yourself enough? Are you willing to be who you are?

“”Who am I?” remains the ultimate question of human existence, and it is a question we are continually challenged to answer anew, as we go on evolving. 

Nathaniel Brande

MARTIN HEIDEGGER ON AUTHENTICITY

​How can we live authentically? Since the dawn of philosophy, many have paused such a question. Also questions, Like how do we know we exist? Does this object exist? How do things exist? But Heidegger, said before asking about existence we must ask what the meaning of being is?

In being and time, he introduces man as “dasein”, the being that stands out from everyday consciousness and recognizes his own being and asks the question “what does it mean to be”. Before this one fact, one realizes this one fact. One is completely absorbed in the world, dasein is in the world.

Living authentically involves dasein’s understanding of itself as a being that exists and that potentially doesn’t exist or eventually will not exist. We do our everyday things but, with everyday monotony, most don’t heavily realize how their acts respond to themselves and others. 

A craftsman has tools and doesn’t see the tools as independent of self but, when the tool breaks the craftsman sees the tool independent of self and this promotes the thought that dasein will in fact be of non-existence or will cease function as does his tools and the craftsman’s self as does his tools are subject to entropy.

Living with the reality of non-existence or that one may die one day is of importance to living authentically. Heidegger brings out the idea of the “own most” which means that by fact, you will experience your own death and you can’t share it with someone, no one but, you has your life and no one but you will have your death.

“We were born into a world of quiet conformity.

Initially everything we do and say, think and believe

Have been done, said, thought and believed before. The activities we regard as worthy of our time and effort, the ultimate values and meanings we pursue

And the particular styles and forms through which we pursue these goals have all been provided by our various human cultures.”

Unless we find ways to wrest control of our own lives from society,

All of our decisions will continue to be made for us by the unnoticed forces of the cultures in which we live.’

They (Other People) even hide the process by which ‘they’ have quietly relieved us of the ‘burden’ of making choices for ourselves. 

It remains a complete mystery who has really done the choosing. We are carried along by the ‘nobody’, without making any real choices, becoming ever more deeply ensnared in inauthenticity.”

[Martin Heidegger Being & Time, Macquarrie p. 312-313; Stambaugh p. 248; paraphrase]

The authentic dasein sees one existence as one’s own, to be defined and made by one’s thoughts and self. The unauthentic dasein is moved and defined by the public and allows one’s self to be socially constructed and one is lost. 

One must not live alone to be authentic but, to be authentic has more to do with your attitude, it involves confronting one’s values, understanding the social, universal reality one exists in, ceasing one’s existence and making it one’s own.

BOOKS & TABLES

​How could youths better learn to live than by at once trying the experiment of living? 

Henry David Thoreau

What is school for? From a young age, we are taught how to think, behave and interact with the world around us. When we do as we are told, its in order that we may mature and grow in our given societies. 

Life is a learning process and experience. Its no surprise, groups and various organisations were brought up to structure this very need in life. These formal places of learning became bigger, better and more prevalently with ideas and concepts which broaden the worldview of anyone willing to listen and learn. 

Education, its root word educare means to bring up or to bring out of.  Education at elementary and university level, in greater detail was meant to teach us how to live. As such, it goes without saying education itself goes beyond the walls of academia.

In the walls of academia, we as such should be met with questions and discoveries pertaining lifes fundamentals like who we are what really matters, where our society is going. 

In the early 19th century with the age of enlightenment, declining of religious doctrine and growing scepticism around god, there was a growing need for a more formal organised institution of higher learning. 

This higher learning would act as an introduction of societal harmony, unity and a greater effectiveness toward living. Education at its roots was meant to aid as well, help us live and create better societies with one equal strong and intellectual voice.

To many educationalists and others scholars of thought, formal education was seen not only to be a key stone in the advancement of thought and development of mankind but, an emergent tool of self-reliance, communal co-dependence and structural information control. 

In one way, rational educative thought wasnt only to replace religious dogma to an extent, but build upon the fundamental intentions of it.
With this in mind, its puzzling to note, that the foundational spirit of educational institutions isnt being met at most places worldwide currently. The common ailments that were spoken topics among religions seem alien and the learning experience is at most as passive as todays newspaper.

Important questions are being answered academically but, it seemed to be just that. Very few times do we see a progressive and healthy blossoming change toward culture and interactions, toward society as a whole from the people that once walked the very important places that are so culturally emphasized.

The big issues, the real issues are but issues. We see specific departments dealing with specific ideas and issues but, mostly in the archaic sense rather than the core principles in the beginning of the studies itself, which was of course, to learn but learning that bridges us to live better. 

Learning that guides us to avoid the mistakes of others past and build upon issues related to a concept that better purifies and grows a better people in a better society.

For the evolution of society and revival of the initial idea of education, a rebranding and redirection toward educational institutions is in need. If its all about money, being often the case, then we doom over selves.

We need courses and information that wont only inform us of our past as humanity or ideas about someone or sometime or something but, that broaden and teach us about ourselves, teach as how to act and why to act. As a place of academia should be a places that should teach us to live, love and die well.

Theres a new tribunal now higher than Gods – the educated man 

Robert Browing