Archive | April 2014

Random thoughts- I needed to vent today-some days the cruelty in the world is overwhelming

Does anyone else get overwrought and ill from the cruelty in the world? Some days it hurts my heart to see the disregard for human life. The horrible way people treat their children and their pets. The abuse of the innocent is horrid such as that perpetrated on children, the elderly, pets and those disabled individuals who have enough to overcome.

It makes me feel so sad to understand that to many people human life means nothing. They are so selfish as to put their desires, no matter how warped, above the basic common caring of their fellow life travelers. Those need not be humans but can be any living thing that requires our kindness to act humanely.

Growing up, we were taught to respect everyone’s feelings and treat them as we would like to be treated. We learned the Ten Commandments as well as the Golden Rule and tried very hard to live by it. Even those less religious among us had a sense of what decency meant and it became an inherent part of our being and our code. Yes, I know, there is nothing new under the sun, but it is splashed across every news outlet and even social media, where many of us first get our news, has no holds barred.

I watch, read and listen to story after story of school shootings and now stabbings. I get a full to overflowing meal of the most unsavory stories about what one person has done to another person. We hear about even parents killing and abusing their own kids. Many women thinking it is okay to abort a baby, not even considering it to be a person as I do.

The world is full of despair and tragedy, both personal and worldwide. We are constantly trying to right wrongs with our often less than adequate justice system. We imprison people who probably would benefit more from therapy than being jailed with the worse examples of humanity you could find. They learn more about crime and hate in prison than anywhere else. To counteract this, we let free some of the worse people in society or just tell them they were naughty and to not do it again, when they need to be looked away from society forever and lose all privileges or worse.

Fortunately, when I feel this way and get on my rant about the bad in life, I also cannot help to remember those good people who do wonderful deeds for others. The pay-it- forward kind of folk who are doing acts of random kindness.

There are people in tiny churches feeding the poor from congregations that barely exist in their own right. There are prayers going out for all those in need and charities to fight abuse and victimization of every living thing. We have people who share their homes, their meals and their lives with those less fortunate as they foster children, handicapped individuals and pets. There are folks whose main mission is to bring up someone’s self-esteem or help them fight a dreadful addiction. Organizations that grant wishes to dying children and people who shave their heads to support cancer victims are good and our heroes. God is truly good and he is not responsible for all the evil. That would be a fallen angel and all of us who do not use our free will correctly, compassionately or completely to help our fellow man.

The pain is there as we view the world in its entirety and the pain brings overwhelming sadness. Before it engulfs you take a moment to consider the good in the world and it will help lessen that pain.

 

Social media keeps writers connected to the real world

Writing can be a very lonely profession, but it almost needs to be in order to provide the correct environment for sustainable production. When you shut yourself away from people, even those you love to be close to, it helps your writing at that moment in time, but is it good for us to become so solitary? Don’t we need human connection to stimulate us and help us feel like we belong to the real world?

For me the best solution is to be active on social media networks like Facebook. In real life, I feel I have very few friends that are close enough to connect with daily. In my online life, I feel surrounded by people who care about me and also want to be part of my current situation. When people comment on your status it feels like they care. When they ask questions of you, it feels like real conversation and they are taking part in an event of some importance to you. Sometimes the advice they offer is golden. Other times a simple ‘like’ indicates a person who has thoughts much as you do or maybe just appreciates the thing you said and that makes us feel awesome.

Getting the news from social media at least alerts me to check more reliable sources and lets me know something important deserves my attention. If everyone is talking about it, I should also know about what happened.

When we post something it opens ourselves up to praise as well as criticism and forms yet another connection with your virtual friends. We feel like we have made a connection with like minds so it is okay to let yourself be vulnerable when this is what could result.
Even when we don’t connect with conversation, but enjoy a photo or joke it tends to produce some kind of emotion in us. We love or hate it, it makes us feel sad or angry; but, whatever it does it is possible to be helpful to us or at least make us feel alive and less alone. Social media is a valuable connection for those who spend solitary hours alone. We need to fell part of the bigger picture. We need to feel like we are with others without taking so much time away from our passion to actually be with others.

I in no way advocate never spending time with family and friends in real life. You must share your life with your loved ones, but those writing in earnest or trying to make a living from it or attempting a book need the type of dedication that eliminates many social encounters. Try to keep involved a little with social media so as to let you feel less lonely and deprived and more in tune with the world.

Every experience should enrich you

Every experience you have in life should enrich you in some way. Even the bad experiences will leave you something- a feeling, an effect on you or maybe a new turn in life. Because of an experience, your life could change, your goals could be reset and your direction re-calculated.

Musicians have always used the everyday experiences both good and bad to draw from for material for their music. Poets and writers tend to do the same, if not, why not?

When an experience is so significant as to make you feel something intensely it is grist for your mill. This type of event leaves its mark which in turn can have you re-examining your whole life. It might make you see that your priorities are wrong. It could result in the knowledge that you have been wasting your life due to past events and this acceptance of that fact could help you move forward.

Experiences such as death of a friend or loved one produce grief and often a re-evaluation of your own mortal life. The grief you may experience can be all encompassing and enrich you even though the feeling is not pleasant.

On the other hand, the joy of a new baby or special holiday celebration will enrich you in quite another way. It will increase your feeling of valuing what you have and all the blessings currently being bestowed upon you. The significance of how lucky you are could produce feeling of euphoria that will enrich your mood and thought process. It seems to me that the happy times result in an appreciation which extends itself to your writing.

Of course, there are many other experiences that do not fall into the sad or happy category, but result in other emotions. An experience such as being angry might help you examine your too quick temper or help you explore ways to slow down the explosion when the fuse is too short.

A learning experience can be very enriching for obvious reasons, but many more subtle changes may result. Besides gaining knowledge, it could help with skills dealing with people and be a lesson in human nature as you work in groups to achieve a goal or create a project.

Worry is another less than pleasant experience which teaches and enriches as you see the complexity of life and try to find ways to solve problems or meet challenges.

Each and every experience creates something that can be used to enrich and teach you more about life. These can be valuable experiences for a writer. When they take the time to really understand what is happening to them, they are the better for it.