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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

the whole is greater than the sum of the parts

“The human organism cannot survive as a bundle of neural reflexes...” -- Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi

Friday, January 13, 2006

The Speech Never Given

Tips from a speech never given
For recent graduates - or those who just need a reminder about what's important in life - here are Mary Schmich's words of wisdom.
> Ladies and Gentlemen:
> Wear sunscreen.
> If I could offer only one tip for the future, sunscreen would be it. The long-term benefits of sunscreen have been proven by scientists, whereas the rest of my advice has no basis more reliable than my own meandering experience.
I will dispense this advice now.
Enjoy the power and beauty of your youth. Oh, never mind. You will not understand the power and beauty of your youth until they've faded. But trust me, in 20 years you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall how fabulous you really looked at the time.
You are not as fat as you imagine.
Don't worry about the future. Or worry, but know that worrying is as effective as trying to solve an algebra equation by chewing gum. Real troubles are apt to blindside you at 4 p.m. on an idle Tuesday.
Do one thing daily that scares you.
Don't be reckless with other people's hearts. Don't put up with people who are reckless with yours.
Remember compliments, forget insults.
Keep old love letters.
Throw away old bank statements.
Don't feel guilty if you don't know what to do with your life. Some of the most interesting 40-year-olds I know still don't know what they want to do with theirs.
Be kind to your knees. You'll miss them when they're gone.
Maybe you'll marry, maybe you won't. Maybe you'll divorce at 40, maybe you'll dance the funky chicken on your 75th wedding anniversary. Whatever you do, don't congratulate yourself or berate yourself too much. Your choices are half chance, like everybody else's.
Dance. Read the directions, even if you don't follow them.
Do no read beauty magazines. They will only make you feel ugly.
Get to know your parents. You never know when they'll be gone.
Be nice to your siblings. They're the best link to your past and the people most likely to stick with you.
Understand that friends come and go, but with a precious few you should hold on. The older you get, the more you need the people who knew you when you were young.
Accept these certain truths: Prices will rise. Politicians will philander. You, too, will get old. And then you'll fantasize that when you were young, prices were reasonable, politicians were noble, and children respected their elders.
Respect your elders.
Don't expect anyone else to support you. Maybe you have a trust fund. Maybe you'll have a wealthy spouse. But you never know when either one might run out.
Don't mess too much with your hair, or by the time you're 40, it will look 85.
Be careful whose advice you buy, but be patient with those who supply it. Advice is a form of nostalgia. Dispensing it is a way of fishing the past from the trash, wiping it off and recycling it for more than it's worth.
But trust me on the sunscreen.

Monday, January 02, 2006

to see into my soul

You ask me if I love you,
And I ask myself how to begin
To share with you
The feelings in my heart.

You inspire in me
A love so deep
Words cannot describe it,
So powerful that it
Overwhelms my every thought.

You ask me if I love you,
And I wish there is a way
You could just see into my soul
And find the depth of passion,
Tenderness, and love
That holds you closer
To my heart
Than anyone or anything else.

Monday, December 19, 2005

monsters within

Obsessions are recurrent ideas or thoughts over which the individual has no control, while compulsions are irresistible impulses to carry out certain behavior of a repetitive nature. In Obsessive-compulsive reactions, the patient may recognize that there is no basis for his behavior, and yet feels powerless to do anything about it.

Behavioral Characteristics in Depressive States
General physiologic functions
Food intake: decreased
Fluid intake: decreased
Gastric acidity: low
Elimination: constipated
Sleep pattern: disturbed

Perceptual-motor functions
Reaction time: slowed
Decision time: slowed
Input-output: limited reactivity
Stimulus reproduction: slow and accurate
Pain threshold: high
Tolerance for pain: high
Tolerance for fatigue: high
Perceptual acuity: precise

Environmental contact
Interaction with others: minimal
Expectation from others: rejection, devaluation
Reaction to overtures from others: withdrawal
Expression of feelings: minimal
Evaluation of reality: accurate
Suggestibility: low

Value orientation
Self-evaluation: deprecating
Perceived status: low
Responsibility: frightened by

Subjective feelings
Range: boredom to despair

Being humans, we cannot avoid frustrations and reactions to frustrations are not always task-oriented and aimed directly at removing the source of the frustration. They sometimes involve distortion of reality that are designed not to solve the problem but simply to protect us against anxiety. Such reactions are often reffered to as DEFENSE MECANISMS, and while there are individual differences in extent to which such are used, they are observed in the behavior of every human being. I believe it pays to know what they are and why you feel them from time to time.
Denial of reality – protects self from unpleasant reality by refusal to percieve or face it, often by escapist activities like getting “sick” or being preoccupied with other things.
Compensation – covering up weakness by emphasizing desirable trait.
Identification – increasing feelings of worth by identifying self with person or institution of illustrous standing.
Projection – placing blame for difficulties on others.
Repression – preventing painful thoughts from entering conscoiusness.
Reaction formation – preventing dangerous desires from being expressed by exaggeration of opposite feelings.
Displacement – discharging pent-up feeling on less dangerous objects.
Emotional isolation – withrawal into passivity to protect self from hurt.
Regression – retreating to a lower developmental level, usually a lower level of aspiration.
Undoing – atoning for and thus counteracting immoral desires.

Friday, November 04, 2005

Images of Home

Monday, August 15, 2005


more pictures

Sunday, June 26, 2005

ten years ago

Ten years ago a school year is drawing to an end and, for a group of thirty-four, a period of life is coming to a close.

Of course, they do not recognize it then, but many things, sometimes ridiculously improbable things, are also ending. And no matter how ridiculous these things may be, they are going to miss them in the coming years…

Their going to the restroom in droves; spending more time in the second classroom outside the gates, with food, trees that shade, and a second mother who is not in the payroll of DECS; the long and dusty walk to and from school, undoubtly one of the highlights of the day; the overnight parties which, although tame by modern standards, taught them lessons that cannot be learned merely within the four walls of a classroom (yet these parties took place within the four walls of a classroom).

Within a few months ten years ago, the thirty-four would be “taking off to explore” as their yearbook chapter would phrase, and for some, this would be something more than they’ve expected, even more than they’ve bargained for.

An environment so closed and isolated, relatively, to the rest of the “harsher” realities of life, will soon be left for good.

For these small group, ten years ago, the time came to lose sight of the shore, and the balsa wood of the common raft where this group had stood, and played, and laughed and cried, began to unravel…

and each, with his and her own lonely piece to cling on,

began to drift towards the present.

this has always been enough

I am nothing special; of this I am sure. I am a common man with common thoughts, and I’ve led a common life.

There are no monuments dedicated to me and my name will soon be forgotten, but I’ve loved another with all my heart and soul, and to me, this has always been enough.

from The Notebook