Is life worth it living it?

Aristotle said once: “We are what we repeatedly do. Therefore, excellence is not an act, but a habit.” I tend to agree with him, and in fact, I’ve used his citation as my email footer signature for a good amount of time. However, is life what we do to it? Are we in control of the events that build up our own existence under the sun? This humble article will establish that even though we might see life as a burden, it might be our responsibility, or at least part of it, to make it happen the way we desire.

This Aristotle citation, along with my religious believes, helped me to pass thru a very difficult period in my life, and also gave me the strength to believe that I was the one to go after my dreams and make it happen. In 2002, I went to the USA to find out how life could be outside of my hometown world. After a year, I came back. However, something inside of me was moving on to do more. In 2005, I went back (also in 2003 for a church conference, but just for 2 months) to the USA, now to go to College. What College? How come? No money, not enough English, could not have my wife and kid with me, and the list keeps adding up. Maybe most of the people in the world would give up even before trying. My life in college, and how I was able to graduate with high honors after 3 years is subject to another post, but I just wanted to make a point: If you dream it, you can do it.

When I say “At least most of it”, I mean it.  What if an individual has a mental or psychological problem? For instance, that person with unbalanced levels of serotonin, will tend to be depressed, and therefore won’t be able to do the things he or she would like to. Even worse, this person would not be able to know what to think as depression takes the life of a been. Help should come somehow from a family member, the person itself, religious believes, you name it. What should not be acceptable is to live as if life were just a weight to carry on.

So, is life worth it living it? I definitely say: Yes! One must go after the dreams and make whatever it takes, (in time: under the law =) ), to get it done. Build up a life worth living is the magic that surrounds this little time in space that is needed to a person to discover the next greatest idea, or conceive a wonderful melody, or just be able to wake up every day and look at the blue sky and be thankful of just being Alive.

The Power of the Words

Once upon time, a woman said to her husband: “Look! It looks good. Guess what? It tastes good as well.” According to the Jewish and Christian bible, that is how sin came into place and all the bad things started to happen since then. Persuasive words, kind and well-formed ideas, good or bad intentioned environment influence, can definitely shape one’s personality, ideas, and decisions – no matter what.

How can one be persuasive against someone else ideas? One cannot. If one goes contrary to other person’s idea, the brain will trigger a natural defense that will automatically reject the new thought. For instance, if I tell you to leave your job now, you certainly won’t do it because it does not make any sense to your brain. However, if I gather enough information, being it truthful or not, about the advantages of leaving a certain job, your mind will feel that there is a possibility of me being right.

In other cases, people tend to sympathize to kind individuals. It is just natural to be polite to the ones that are polite to yourself, or be offensive to the ones that are rude as well. Being aware of it, saves one from being unnecessarily in trouble and as a bonus will also make your audience agree with you more easily.

Although persuasive words and kind behavior seems to be good things, wrong or out of scope words can do greater damage than a good one would do. It is common knowledge: Do one thousand good things and you are good. Do one bad, and everyone forgets the good things you’ve had done.

So, are we in control of what we think, or are we the result of the experiences with pass thru? Are we influenced by media, people, or even religion, or are we as rational as we think? Philosophers try to answer these questions for thousands of years and I am not in position give a verdict. However, I can say one thing: One word has the power to destroy one’s life as it has the same power to construct a beautiful relationship.

The right to comment

What I am about to post is very sad for us, Brazilians. It is about those comments that go after a given article on major news web sites. What is the reason for them to be there, how people should use it, and what are the differences between the very same articles in Brazil versus USA? There should not be any differences, but this is not what one can perceive.

The reason why comments are allowed in daily news article is to let the user have the feel of having its voice heard – which is the big deal with the internet 2.0. As one could presume, comments about a given article should be what it is to be: A comment about the article. However, that is not what we see around.

Readers should use this marveled tool wisely, adding knowledge to the subject alone or at least having some connection/relevance to it. It gets more obvious when one compares the comments on a Brazilian news article and a USA one. Do not take me wrong – I am Brazilian, but the truth must be said: we mess up the comment’s business.

If one takes a single article from, for instance, globo.com, will notice right away that comments are not always about the subject. Instead, it takes most of the time, a religious and prejudiced connotation. Sad, but true. It all starts with the first point of view: “God has done it or the person did not hear what God said”. Then, the next comment says: “What God? He does not even exist. You are so **** to even think he is a living entity” and that keeps going until someone wrapped it up and gets totally out of subject: “Guys, respect one’s opinion”. What opinion? About religious believe or the article itself?

I was reading a news about this pilot that had a panic attack and the air plane had to be taken down by the other pilots. The comments were very respectful, trying to understand the symptoms and if they match to the given diagnostic. One said: “This can’t be panic attack as the symptoms are very distinct. It must be some other disorder aggravated by the stress caused by several non-stopping working hours”.

Needless to say, the very same article in Brazil had a totally different approach: Guess what? They started to say: “this pilot is nuts. In fact, all people that has panic attacks are just crazy and should not do what normal people does”, and the list keeps on.

What is the solution for this? I don’t know entirely. What I do know is that education must take place teaching the people on how to express themselves not being offensive and being cohesive, keeping the focuses on the subject instead of the religious or cultural backgrounds.

Most countries assure the right to speech and express thoughts. Right to comment be should and will be maintained. However, let’s be more careful with the words and take a smarter step towards better communication so our voice can be heard in an effective way.

Keep it Simple

For my first post in here, I would like to expose myself on how I think about ideas, people, work, and religion. On my very own view, I believe that everything should be treated as simple as possible. For instance, in math, one can break down any long math structure into a simple line of meaningful data. The same can be applied to virtually anything in life (and post life if you will)

Lately I’ve been getting professional medical help where I am trying to understand myself instead of trying to understand the world.

As a math oriented person, I tend to see everything as logic as possible (maybe as impossible as well) and at some aspects of life, it is just unpractical.

I am a multilingual computer programmer, and in my field everything has a reason and must be tested to the unit level. On the other hand, I am also a christian musician responsible to lead the people to worship God. How can that work? It does not. The conflict inside of me is tremendously. Not that I have any problems with the spiritual subject. It is only that some people (not to say must of them) just can’t get it right. I am not saying I know everything, but I am getting back to the subject: Keep it simple.

At church, people tend to believe that every single thing is caused by direct decision of God (predetermined). Although God has the power to do anything, He just can’t go against himself. He lets his creating take decisions, good or bad, and tries to teach them – if they listen to Him is something else.

Think with me: If God had to do everything as He wants since the beginning, He wouldn’t have let Lucifer fall, neither the human kind. Does He has all the power? Yes. But He does not impose it to anyone.

Now, was it the time of God, did he tell you to do so? He could, but I prefer to believe what Salomon said about everyone being under the sun, susceptible to the same problems and finally death.

So, stop trying to understand God. Make it simple: Love your neighbor as yourself, and enjoy life from the smallest to the highest level, each day at the time.