“I’ve got a song
I’ve got a song
And I carry it with me and I sing it loud
If it gets me nowhere, I’ll go there proud” ~ Jim Croce
Often, many of us think results are most important, getting, receiving, things working out in the end, the end result, succeeding the way we intended….and while those things can be important, I realize more and more that the most important thing is our drive, our intention, will, inspiration, motivation itself, not always just the results.
This is something that I think people who have suffered a serious physical illness/pain or severe depression may be able to understand better than people who have never experienced those things. But I think anyone can come to see my point, whether or not you agree.
When we are severely sick or deeply depressed, we can lose our appetite. Not just for food but for life. It’s like there’s nothing. Just nothingness and emptiness and numbness. For some of us, sometimes we don’t even want to win. Often, we don’t want to live or to die. Even wanting to die takes a kind of passion and energy. If you want to die, there’s a spark in you somewhere. Seize that spark and hang onto it like your life depends on it. It does.
Take that little sliver of life still left in you and use it for the better. Apply it to something other than wanting to die. Even when it’s hard. Use that little spark to help others, help the environment, do volunteer work, create something, post words of wisdom to uplift or inspire someone else, keep pushing through the numbness and lifelessness and pain and do something, anything, for the better…
“Always have the highest bar for yourself. Wake up everyday and, no matter how crappy you feel, want to change something for the better. Do something that makes someone happy. Create something that inspires someone. Be someone’s light when they are hopeless.” – Dave Grohl
Just the fact that we have passion, interest is an amazing thing even if everything crumbles to seemingly irreparable pieces in the end. But often, people don’t think of this. We are too focused on the end, not the journey itself.
I thought about this more last week while reading a text about the movie the “Matrix” and philosophy. The “Matrix” movie is deeply philosophical but many people don’t realize or care about that aspect. It’s just a fun, action packed thriller, probably, for the average person. But for those with philosophical minds and especially us philosophy phreaks, we see and love that it runs deeper than that.
In some ways, the story is extremely similar to the story of Socrates, the ancient philosopher who is said to have been put to death for challenging the common beliefs of society, shaking up the status quo. According to the ancient texts, Socrates was constantly nagging people, but with loving intentions, about the nature of things and beliefs that no one else questioned and just accepted as truth.
This led to him being executed, according to the old writings, mostly by Plato.
Check out some of Plato’s writings for free, here if you want:
Socrates is often considered to be arrogant, as he questions and questions until the poor person contradicts himself or makes a mistake, but he is completely humble. He backs people into corners and intimidates them. But only because he believes it’s important to think and question and own up to flaws in our reasoning and belief systems. He believes examination of how we live is more crucial than anything, for living a good life.
Socrates questions and intimidates and puts people in awkward situations where they contradict themselves, yet he admits that he knows absolutely nothing. That he knows nothing more than anyone else.
“Wisest is she who knows she does not know.”
He does this excessive questioning just for the sake of questioning and exploring. The fact that he believes he knows nothing but still badgers people like this knowing that he can’t possibly judge their answers as correct or incorrect since he doesn’t know himself, reveals that his quest is mostly to shed light on the fact that questioning itself, exploration, examination alone is crucial for a good life. (I wouldn’t recommend his way of going about it though, forcing people to stand there and answer when it’s annoying the piss out of them!)
Here’s an example of Socrates’ exasperating method of questioning:
Socrates: What is holy?
Euthyphro: Holiness is what all the gods love and its opposite is what all the gods hate, unholiness.
Socrates: Is what is holy holy because the gods approve it, or do they approve it because it is holy?
And on and on.
What a gadfly Socrates is! Lol But he does have a point, doesn’t he? And the fact that someone loves something is not essential to the thing’s nature. It’s not its nature. It’s accidental. If someone stops loving something, that something still is what it always was. I love Coca Cola, always have, always will but if I stop loving it, it’s still the same substance. Maybe it would be different if I were a goddess as opposed to the mere mortal that I am, and I love it?
In philosophy we have a specific definition for “accidental.” An accidental quality is simply a trait that is part of someone or something but not crucial to its essence or nature. My eye color for example. It doesn’t make me what I am. If it changes or was never what it is but a different color instead, I would still be the me that I now am. (at least I think so) In fact my eyes were always pure blue then when I was a teenager, they turned bright green mixed with blue! (I was freaked out…) But I’m still me. Hair color, size…are other examples of accidental qualities. And think of coffee with a flavor, say, raspberry, the raspberry flavoring is accidental, not essential. Coffee is coffee with or without raspberry flavor. Anyway here I am doing what I do best, getting carried away while writing and going off on a tangent!
(in Philosophy, we speak/write of philosophers as if they are alive even if they haven’t been alive in centuries, it’s just what we do! Lol)
Coincidentally I was thinking about posting this topic on Sunday before the free hugging event and then I experienced something where I was able to apply it!
Sunday, May 3rd, was Global Free Hug Day! I got out of the house and to the park later than I planned and I couldn’t stay long. I decided to try LOVE park first! The famous Philadelphia park with the big LOVE statue that people all around the country or world come to visit and get weddings pics and other pictures and things in front of it! (I get to see it everyday if I want! Lol sorry, just had to brag! ;-D)
And it’s there that I experienced the most love out of the parks I visited! No one really stops to read signs often! I was with my mom and sister who did not want to participate so it was just me hugging and no one was really looking at me. Some people quickly glanced at my sign (which I think turned out beautifully even with my dreadful handwriting!) and looked away not really reading! It can be awkward looking at a stranger and reading something that stranger is holding.
My mom told me i wasn’t going to get any hugs! 😦 Because no one was walking near me and I couldn’t stay very long! Also, I’m not loud or very bold. So I wasn’t going to yell “free hugs!!!” like some people!! It took enough courage just to stand there with the sign! 😀 But I did!
It was disappointing but I was reminded that all that matters is that I have the inspiration and motivation and courage to participate in free hug day!
All we can really do is attempt!
We can appreciate that we have the will, the desire, the motivation and inspiration, the love, the life in us, to do something.
So at least I had the will, passion, and desire. That’s not to say people who don’t want to participate in free hug day don’t have passion, it’s not everyone’s cup of tea but since I do like things like this, it’s great to have the motivation! And this goes for anything we have motivation to do. This is just one example.
As I mentioned in a somewhat recent post, I have been struggling hard with grief. We lost my close friend/coworker, Diane(she was 58 years old), a couple months ago, unexpectedly and I have been grieving since she died and always will but it was really hitting me hard for a while. So hard. The more days that would go by, the more difficult it would get. It’s worse now than when it first happened. For days and days the worst of it wouldn’t let up. It’s not depression, just raw agonizing grief that hurts so much I can hardly stand it. And anxiety and fear, sometimes close to panic. This is the longest I have gone without seeing Diane, in the almost ten years I have known her. It feels extremely confusing. She was very loving, funny, and beautiful.
A couple days before global Free Hug day, I thought I had no strength to do much and while I still wanted to do hug day, I wasn’t sure how I could but I reminded myself it has the potential to help others. And if something can result in even a fraction of good for someone else, it is worth doing no matter how lifeless it feels or in pain I am. I can keep on pushing through it all whether it’s grief and loss, depression, physical pain..even when it seems I have no strength or courage.
But I did have the strength and motivation to do hug day and other things I thought I couldn’t do. And I told myself that’s all that matters!
Anyway, I did get a couple hugs! Yay!! And some beautiful pics of the park! And I will post about Hug Day soon! The pics are on my other memory card and I’m having some problems with my phone and the cards and I want to include the pics! 😀
I am reminded of Nimo Patel’s “Planting Seeds” song about how all
we can do is try then let go and whatever happens, happens and that’s it.
Here are some of his lyrics.
“…but the roots are always growin’ no matter if I’m there or never around…whatever grows will grow, whatever dies will die, whatever works will work, whatever flies will fly, whatever fails will fail, what’s meant to soar will soar, I am planting seeds, nothing more.”
“It’s like your whole life you’ve been training for this moment
And when the time comes you just disown it,
Meaning you just surrender don’t control it…”
“But now we’re learning when we let it go, it overflows
With no credit to take cuz no credit is owned.”
“…but the real gold is joy, when life starts to flow
And when it does, you just smile, cuz now you know!”
Here’s the video:
I wrote about this topic in my super long “Fear & Hunger” post a while ago.
Check it out here if you want:
And I am also reminded of another beautiful song I listened to for as long as I can remember and it often helped me with my depression when I was young, before I learned to cope well, and is still one of my favorite songs! It’s Jim Croce’s “I Got a Name.”
Here is the desktop video version:
If you listen closely to the lyrics, you can hear the message. It’s about living and loving and being inspired in general no matter what happens or doesn’t. It’s about living with a song in our hearts and if it doesn’t work out for us, let’s just be happy we tried. Intention, trying, the will and desire counts for something!
So let’s honor our drive, our motivation, our inspiration and desire. Our will. Let’s cherish it and be mindful of it. It’s good to win and succeed how we planned. But it’s even better to want to win and succeed. Wanting to win is everything, even if we are greatly disappointed in the end. We can still appreciate our desire and will. Let’s find our inner song and embrace it even if it seems to lead us nowhere. Just having a song in us is cause for celebration.
I’m wishing you much love now & always!!