History is the lie commonly agreed upon. Voltaire

The best way to get approval is not to need it.

This is equally true in art and business. And love. And sex. And just about everything else worth having.

Hugh MacLeod

“The most important thing a creative per­son can learn professionally is where to draw the red line that separates what you are willing to do, and what you are not.

Art suffers the moment other people start paying for it. The more you need the money, the more people will tell you what to do. The less control you will have. The more bullshit you will have to swallow. The less joy it will bring. Know this and plan accordingly.” — Hugh MacLeod

“One of the interesting things about success is that we think we know what it means. A lot of the time our ideas about what it would mean to live successfully are not our own. They’re sucked in from other people. And we also suck in messages from everything from the television to advertising to marketing, etcetera.

These are hugely powerful forces that define what we want and how we view ourselves. What I want to argue for is not that we should give up on our ideas of success, but that we should make sure that they are our own. We should focus in on our ideas and make sure that we own them, that we’re truly the authors of our own ambitions. Because it’s bad enough not getting what you want, but it’s even worse to have an idea of what it is you want and find out at the end of the journey that it isn’t, in fact, what you wanted all along.” — Alain de Botton

“What you should not do, I think, is worry about the opinion of anyone beyond your friends. You shouldn’t worry about prestige. Prestige is the opinion of the rest of the world.

Prestige is like a powerful magnet that warps even your beliefs about what you enjoy. It causes you to work not on what you like, but what you’d like to like.

Prestige is just fossilized inspiration. If you do anything well enough, you’ll make it prestigious. Plenty of things we now consider prestigious were anything but at first. Jazz comes to mind—though almost any established art form would do. So just do what you like, and let prestige take care of itself.

Prestige is especially dangerous to the ambitious. If you want to make ambitious people waste their time on errands, the way to do it is to bait the hook with prestige. That’s the recipe for getting people to give talks, write forewords, serve on committees, be department heads, and so on. It might be a good rule simply to avoid any prestigious task. If it didn’t suck, they wouldn’t have had to make it prestigious.” — Paul Graham

you might not see the energies flowing all around and through us, but you can feel it. some feel it naturally without trying, others require focus. either way, for most of us it takes a bit of practice and awareness. personally, at this point at least, it seems sometimes i feel the energies and sometimes i don’t. it seems to depend on my own mental activity / where my head is.

i wonder what we would see and how we would feel if we could literally see the energies all around us, as clear as anything else. our reactions, our perceptions, what we value, how we live, would all change.

if you could see energy, you’d see the true value of everyday things like money, material belongings, friendships, love, your impact on the world, the energies themselves, etc. i have a feeling that the perceived values of everything and everyone in our world would completely change if we could see the energies behind them, between them, inside them, etc.

if you could see energy, you might not think negatively about another. as you’d watch that offensive bolt of psychic lightning travel right to them, and right back again, striking both parties with poison.

if you could see energy, you would see where you give energy and where you take energy, and it might be different from where you personally think you are giving or taking energy, quite possibly different than how you currently would like it. you could see all the energy drains, the energy vacuums, the energy parasites, and also the energy propellors, the energy rejuvenators, the energy magnifiers, and the energy transformers. all these probably come in many living and non-living forms.

if you could see energy, you would probably know why people treat each other the way they do, the “good” and the “bad“ sides of it. and you could see how quickly it boomerangs and how, from a higher perspective, we always get what we deserve, from karmic repercussions to our own personal subconscious beliefs in who we are (or feel we should be.)

if you could see energy, you would probably rarely think you were being taken advantage of, rarely see yourself as a victim, maybe not think that anyone owes you anything or that you owe anyone else anything. and all the debts and obligations in the world probably wouldn’t matter much because you’d see the strings attached to them.

if you could see energy, fear would dissipate as you’d probably see that all energy belonging to every being and every thing in the universe is eternal, constantly transforming and shifting states, never staying one way or another for very long. what matters now, might not matter later, and vice versa.

if you could see energy as clearly as anything else, well, you likely wouldn’t have so many questions. maybe i’m wrong. i’m just pondering here. as usual, i don’t know any more than anyone else.

but i do wonder: if we could see the energies around us and inside us, would we see them as they are in this moment, or would we still be guided (or misguided) by perception? if we could see energy, would there be any trace of what the energy was before this moment? could we decipher it from what it is now?

interesting thing is, we DO see energy. am i wrong? we see energy, but we only see what our minds form the energy into. and our minds form the energy around where we focus our conscious attention, and into what we tend to believe… is. 

If we could look into each other’s hearts, and understand the unique challenges each of us faces, I think we would treat each other much more gently, with more love, patience, tolerance, and care. Marvin J Ashton
I do not particularly like the word ‘work.’ Human beings are the only animals who have to work, and I think that is the most ridiculous thing in the world. Other animals make their livings by living, but people work like crazy, thinking that they have to in order to stay alive. The bigger the job, the greater the challenge, the more wonderful they think it is. It would be good to give up that way of thinking and live an easy, comfortable life with plenty of free time. I think that the way animals live in the tropics, stepping outside to eat, and taking a long nap in the afternoon, must be a wonderful life. For human beings, a life of such simplicity would be possible if one worked to produce directly his daily necessities. In such a life, work is not work as generally people think of it, but simply doing what needs to be done. Masanobu Fukuoka
The secret of genius is to carry the spirit of the child into old age, which means never losing your enthusiasm. Aldous Huxley
What then is truth? A mobile army of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms — in short, a sum of human relations, which have been enhanced, transposed, and embellished poetically and rhetorically, and which after long use seem firm, canonical, and obligatory to a people: truths are illusions about which one has forgotten that is what they are; metaphors which are worn out and without sensuous power; coins which have lost their pictures and now matter only as metal, no longer as coins. We still do not know where the urge for truth comes from; for as yet we have heard only of the obligation imposed by society that it should exist: to be truthful means using the customary metaphors - in moral terms, the obligation to lie according to fixed convention, to lie herd-like in a style obligatory for all… Friedrich Nietzsche
The people who say you are not facing reality actually mean that you are not facing their idea of reality. Margaret Halsey
It has always been a mystery to me how men can feel themselves honoured by the humiliation of their fellow beings. Mahatma Gandhi
Real happiness is not vulnerable, because it does not depend on circumstances. Nisargadatta Maharaj