Posts Tagged ‘Experience’


When we experience the phenomenon we call ‘change’, is it truly a moving from one reality to the next, or is it simply a continuum of the same reality? Do we really change, or do we simply unlock something that was always in us?

I’m a gamer, i.e. I play video games a lot. There is something in gaming called an “unlockable”. This is an item or option that you “unlock” by completing certain tasks. For example, if you finish a game in under 10 hours, it gives you infinite ammunition the next time you play it through. Or even more simple, you can get a colourful hat for your character’s wardrobe if you beat a certain monster. There’s a million ways to explain this, but basically you get something that was previously unavailable to you once specific conditions are met.

These special items are meant to change the experience of the game in a way that wasn’t an option before. And in some cases, they allow you to do things you couldn’t do before, like jump much further so that you can reach that ledge with a treasure chest you could always see but not reach before.

So, how does this apply to my question about ‘change’? The unlockables do change how the game works or how you experience it, but they were always there in the programming of the game. They aren’t completely new to the people who made the game, but they may be completely new to those who play the game. So did the game change? Or did you just discover something that was always there, and always a part of the game?

We age. We get older. That brings about changes in our bodies and minds. That’s something we can’t escape.

Think of this: at some point you were 70cm tall. Then at another point you were over 100cm tall (I’m trying to pick heights relevant to everyone). Your height changed. But wasn’t it always going to be that way based on your genetics? Is it truly an absolutely new you, or just the same you with a new experience that was already written into your genetic programming?

What about changes in the way we think? Once you were scared of the dark, then you weren’t (I hope that applies to most people reading this). Yes, there’s a change in the way you experience the dark now from how you did before, but was that a true change, or just flicking the switch (pun intended) between feelings you already possess but express at different times?

We could talk about unexpected events that force a change in us. Maybe you broke your leg after falling off a tree. That would be a legitimate change. Or would it?
Our bones have the capacity to mend themselves, and even become thicker and stronger after repeated trauma (as in the case of martial arts experts who can break bricks with their hands without harming themselves). This ability to heal, or strengthen can only be expressed in the event of some damage to the body. And yet, this ability was always there, ready to restore the body to what it should be.

On a purely subjective level, our experience would be enough to prove the reality of ‘change’. How we feel about something can change, and, therefore, we look at it differently to how we did before. We learn new things and gain new abilities through experience (“new abilities through experience”?? RPG anybody?). How we respond can change in a way that was different from before.

However, when we consider that all the feelings and thoughts can only happen within a predetermined spectrum of possible feelings and thought processes that is already written into us, can we still say that there is a legitimate ‘change’, when it is just a different part of the same spectrum?

This could probably be one of the more abstract posts I’ve written, but it’s simply a thought. I’m sure there’s many real changes that exist. Yet, it is compelling when you look at how many of these changes could be something that was already in our coding, as opposed to something that genuinely altered us.

When you think about it, it’s remarkable just how broad the spectrum of possibility is within us as human beings. We can go through traumas, and are able to survive. We can go from lows to highs in life. We can make new decisions about how we will treat certain people. All that, and still be the same person.

It’s an even more fascinating concept when you consider how many times we tell ourselves we can’t do something, but have the ability written in us somewhere. 



Posted: September 25, 2012 in Inspired!
Tags: , , , , ,

As time passes in our lives we get to points of transition. Either something’s coming to an end, or something new is starting; maybe it could be a success or a failure; or it could just simply be a point at which a really serious decision needs to be made. Whatever that point looks like for you, it’s an important one because it plays a role in literally shaping your life or character, and its moments like these where sometimes we have to look back over where we’ve been and who we’ve become. (more…)

In an earlier blog, I talked about how it was important for us to be able to communicate ourselves better to others. Most relationships (friends, family, work, marriage…etc) fail because of misunderstandings, or failures in understanding. I went further to hazard my belief that if we knew how to communicate ourselves better, we’d be a lot further in terms of relational maturity.

I want to take that concept further in this post. It is entirely possible that we fail to speak our hearts effectively, because we don’t even know ourselves that well. People have had this idea for a long time that communication is just from you to another person/people. This post presents the idea that there’s a level of communication that should take place even before you talk to others: It’s communication with YOURSELF! (more…)

Popular Train of Thought

It is interesting to note what people would define ‘life’ as. We even have phrases like “Life happens”, “That’s life”, or the popular “Lessons of life”. It seems that most times, life is what happens around us, or what happens to us. Events take place and are placed in the category of ‘life’; parents treat us a certain way, and that’s ‘life’; the place we grew up in is a segment of ‘life’.

Often I wonder when and why we determined that ‘life’ was everything that happened outside of us. I don’t dispute that our experiences are ingrained within our minds and for the most part motivate our actions. However it just seems a little off that we define this thing called ‘life’ through things that may influence us, but are not us. Think of it this way: a man named Fred has a car accident, a terrible one. He develops a fear of driving because he might be in another accident, so he decides to take public transport and taxis. When people asked him why he doesn’t drive anymore, he says “Because I of the accident, I didn’t want that possibility again. It’s safer this way.” (This is actually a true story for a few people I know)
Something clearly happened to him, that happens a lot around us, and from that event, he chose a way of living that he believed was a good enough response.

Now, every time you ask Fred, you’ll hear about the accident, and how terrible it was. Most times you ask people how they ended up in the place they are in, they’ll tell you about what happened to them growing up, or with a friend, you’ll hear about their “accidents”. The events have shaped their lives, and indeed this is true for many of us. However, I’m of the mind that life is not what happens around us or to us… Life IS US!!!

Life is what takes place within  you as you face what happens to you. Life is the decision you make when you hear a certain phrase, or go through a traumatic period. Life is you saying “I will never…” or “I will always…”! Life is your heart’s response to the environment around you. The feelings you have, the thoughts, the inner scripts that play in your mind when you go about your day, these form life. The events are just influencers of life, they are not the entirety of life.

When life becomes about the events, you’ll notice that you take less responsibility for your response.  If you asked Fred why he never drove himself, he’d tell you about the accident, and elaborate on how bad it was…but you’d never hear him talk about the Fear he had and that he couldn’t deal with it. The accident was an influencer, but Fear was his response, and the decision to take public transport was based on the Fear, not the accident. I hope you see what I’m saying. Life is the internal activity that responds to external elements.

Now, if these external elements are just influencers, then they can also damage us. I’ve read many times how the body has this natural ability to heal itself; that it basically does almost all the work of restoring itself after injury. 
When you break a bone and put on a cast, the  cast just keeps the bones in place so that the  body can do what it’s supposed to do. Some medications do the same, by promoting the body’s natural reflex to a disease or instability. I bring this up, because I wonder: if the body can heal itself (albeit sometimes with help), then can the human heart/mind do the same thing? Stuff is happening to us all the time, and some of it brings us to the conclusion that something’s terribly wrong with life, and therefore ourselves.

If our bodies come hard-wired with this ability to restore themselves, do our minds come with it too? If someone has been dealt a bad hand in the way they grew up, what ‘cast’ can we put on their mind that would promote brokenness to be mended, the positive overcoming the negative?

Unfortunately, because of background, or negative influence, we develop scripts that can destroy our lives, and dictate every single decision we make. No longer is it just the external influences, our very own subconscious becomes an enemy, poisoning every experience with that negative script! Leading to a decision that just takes us deeper into pain, breaking us even more.

But what if there were words we could speak over ourselves, exercises we could do to train our minds/hearts to overcome these events, and still make a decision for the good of our lives (and even those around us when we have families). What if Life could heal itself? It’s all over nature, with trees overcoming harsh weather or surviving fires, plants naturally taking in negative carbon dioxide and filling the air with positive oxygen for more life to grow. It’s already happening all around us!

Successful minds, have this knack for beating the equations of brokenness. Some of them coming from destructive backgrounds, and yet achieving so much in their lives that many would look up to. They have a way of seeing the possibilities, more than their past. They can still create dreams when they should be having nightmares! What would it take for you to adopt that kind of thought pattern?

I’ve understood that some people are more aware  of their possibilities than others. Some people, just don’t know they can live better, believe more of themselves, or achieve greatness in any way. The external elements never provided them with those possibilities. Yet, one trick was to find those possibilities in any way shape or form, even if it didn’t come from their own experiences, then learning to believe that those possibilities could be their own. Never an easy task, but it’s just one way.

Can your Heart heal itself?

Can your Heart heal itself?

I’m not going to say I know all the answers, but I’m definitely looking for them. Life is what’s within us. If our bodies, which house this life, can heal themselves, then I truly believe there is a way for Life to heal itself within us as well. Any broken bones need a cast, or else there’s a risk that they set badly. I know another kind of ‘set’, and that is the mind-set! How do we promote its proper setting in the case of brokenness? I’m sure I’ve covered some ideas in this blog before, and I’m positive there are many more ‘heals’ for us to experience within us.

It’s a high-speed chase, to be Hot on the ‘Heals’ of Life! It requires a great ability to be self-aware. Knowing your emotions, and being aware of the decisions you make in a situation, the feelings that go with these processes, and understanding when you’re dealing with either a bad experience, or even worse, a badly set mind!

The journey is immense and requires massive accountability to self, and those we love…but it’s a journey worth taking.

The Maze of life is full of dead-ends. Some stay there and become what the environment dictates, but some choose to turn around and seek a new path and determine life for themselves. To be a success you’ll have to take responsibility for your actions, but when Life is defined by what happens around you, it’s harder to take that responsibility and own the life you live.
However, when Life is what is inside you, your essence, your being…then making great choices – and even dealing with poor ones – becomes something within your grasp!

Live the life you chose, not the one that your past had planned for you!

And even if something has gone wrong, Life has some healing mechanisms in place, but you have to apply the right ‘cast’ for them to work in your favour. Maybe the ‘cast’ could be positive affirmation, the memory of a success you achieved, a picture you’ve kept, or even the words of someone who believed in you. Whatever it is, it will help you ‘heal’.

Are you hot on the ‘heals’ of Life?