Musings by J.D.Stefanovic


The chronical of Orphan ways 2013

CosmicSo here we are right after the Christmas Holidays. That´s the magical time of the year when all of a sudden people finds their heart and values family time and becomes generous and so forth, happy times basically, now keep in mind that I am speaking in general terms, of course there´s always some that deviates from this pattern and some that feels that this is the absolute worst time of the year, or then again some that actually carries that loving and caring spirit around year. One situation is where some dread this holiday cause that´s when they have to face that they´re alone. What if we actually could keep that happy warm loving feeling towards one another around the year? Now when everyone is somewhat in the Christmas spirit ready for the new-year to kick in I want to share some thoughts about a concept called “true human character”. What does true human character mean? Well let me tell you that it is something that I gather is rather uncommon in our midst. In my previous post I talked about being grateful for the small things we have and what if we stopped complaining for once and actually saw what we do have and started to appreciate those things a bit more. Family and friends etc…

Well what if we took this concept a bit further and started to look at our world and how things look like today. Pretty shitty place we live in right? What is the cause of the misery seen today? Well pretty safe to say that we are behind the chaos around us. What has driven us to this point so that we can find people starving around the world and living under horrible conditions? Well foremost I would say a discontented greed that never ends, as you earn more and get more you just want even more, an endless pit. We have grown into a very egocentric society. It can easily be seen around how some parts of the world is brutally exploited of its wealth, harvesting from the poor in order to feed us in the west while the countries where we take from is left standing there. We move out the factories from our expensive western countries to a poor country like Bangladesh, why? Well of course so that we can earn more money, so that we don´t have to pay too much salary. Instead we can pay next to nothing to the poor people in a third world country, and they´ll be just happy cause that´s more than they used to have anyway so no harm done morally speaking. But while taking abroad every major factory and such will be the downfall of the west. In not a too distant future the scale will slowly but surely even out, the west falls and east rises. Would not surprise me if more incidents like Detroit happened again where a large western city files for bankruptcy. Car industries move their factories to Asia, fashion industries, how far will it be taken? It seems as the only motivator is to earn as much money as possible.  Well anyhow this is not meant to be a political text at all. Just to paint a picture of how the world looks like and how we all by ourselves have managed to do this. Needless to say how much cruelties the human race has suffered throughout the history of mankind. But the source to all suffering has always turned out to be the very same elements, greed or pure evil, insanity and weird fanaticism for some religious or other odd convictions and so forth.

But what if something else than greed motivated us in life? What if compassion, love and respect for one another were the source of inspiration in life? Now here´s a really crazy picture to you to chew on but just imagine if the world looked like this. If I in fact were able to respect my neighbor and actually treat him in a loving way instead of looking at him with jealousy in mind, when he gets a new car or whatever might annoy me. Now this goes into total madness but what if had what´s best for you as my interest. What if I went to work and earned money so that it could bring food on your table and vice versa. I mean this paints a picture where I would have no grudge over the fact that you got something that I don´t have. Of course this is very farfetched. Imagine if there were no hatred and jealousy but love and respect, then I couldn´t find it in my heart to do something that would hurt you but instead everything I did would do good and benefit everyone and not just me, so therefore there could be no ill deeds cause no one would have it in them to hurt anyone else.

But this is an orphan world that lacks a decent father figure, what I mean by orphan ways is that if you picture an orphan. Everything the child gets, he will make sure to never lose ahold of. He has everything to lose, he has no body to count on. He can´t be sure of how and where he gets his next meal, but a child that has good parents doesn’t even have to think about his next meal. He just knows that mom is making dinner soon. He has clothes, he has food and a roof over his head. But if you imagine how an orphan lives. It´s a constant battle for survival with no shelter or protection, no one to defend him or speak for his rights. Quite frankly it seems like the world is acting like an orphan child, who has lost everything and fights for everything by the skin of his teeth to get ahold of as much as possible. Not that interested in how you´re doing as long as I´m ok. Now there is seen a somewhat fake compassion. We speak the words of empathy but when it really comes down to business, then all of a sudden we don´t have the resources or will to help. As long as someone else does the sacrificial part then we can sort of agree with the cause but if it actually would mean that you would have to give away something valuable or that you would lose a big chunk of money, then NO WAY!!! Hey hey hey, hold your horses! Not quite sure if I´m willing to do that! Generosity comes in measures for sure. But a generous person actually gives without measure, he doesn´t look how much he has in his wallet, if he can afford, but if he sees a person that is in need, that really would need this more than you, we´re still incapable of giving, cause we immediately think that we are losing something, now I will be left out or in lack of something. The other person needs food or clothes or whatever. All we can think of is that, shit what about my new computer now, or vacation or whatever. Now I am not speaking about that the right thing would be to neglect ourselves and our wellbeing. Or that we are not allowed to enjoy while others suffer. But you gotta admit that there would be room for a bit more of compassion in us than we have now? Our orphan habits, it´s just there without thinking. The orphan comparison works on so many levels. We are almost by default in a state of mind that if I help too much or care too much, as if I’m losing something or something is taken away from me. It is so subtle but as love fades away a hard crust starts to build up around our hearts and soon we have forgotten what compassion and empathy is. It affects everything around us. An orphan kid gets easily jealous, because he has nothing. But when the person beside me succeeds, why not be happy for him/she? The fact that they got something does not mean that i lost something. Somehow we have developed a society where everything is measured. How much do you earn? What kind of education do you have? As if that determines whether i´m a good person or not. I´m a subject to this thinking behaviour as much as anyone else so i´m no better but i do wish for a change in both me as in our world.  Don´t belive in new years resolutions but maybe i´ll try to keep an extra eye open and pray that i wouldn´t be so ego centered.

Happy new year 2014 people.



Storm in a cup

Come sernityDo we feel happy with our lives? Have we reached our goals that we once set up for ourselves? Or do we instead nag and complain about our situation? There seems to be this emptiness, a void that needs constant filling. I would guess the most common issue is the complaint of the lack of money. People get burned out because of too much work, stress and what not and our personal issues seem like the biggest problems ever. But when taking a step backwards and looking at the bigger picture we end up realizing that all we have is a tiny storm in a cup. How did the famous expression go? “Hey it could be worse”. When taking this step backwards we realize that most of us here in the western world actually live by very high standards and live a pretty decent life after all.

When you see people from Africa, South-America or Asia where the majority lives under quite poor circumstances, is that although they are missing out on a lot when it comes to stability and safety, what often strikes me is that despite of the circumstances they have something that the western world is lacking. Here in the western cultures it sort of feels like the common motto is “this isn´t enough, I need more”. Whenever I see a documentary with all the kids running after the camera man or you see where kids play Football (European way people) you see kids running around laughing and being joyous, you seem to be able to notice something that we often lack in our modern society. Now of course I realize that this is only one side of the coin because the fact is that many of their life situations are just horrible and majority the kids have to work as hard as their parents to get food. But there is something else. While we have all the materialistic benefits, we have the option to enter a grocery store and buy whatever items we need but there is something we´re missing. Something that is available to all of us but our modern society has driven us into this self-centered species.

I think that I dare to say that the less unfortunate persons in third world countries have a life energy that is somewhat freer than many of us have. It almost seems like they are able to look from a distance at their storm and say “hey it could be worse”. I don´t mean that they are happy with their lives but what comes across is that in the midst of all the misery and the lack in materialistic ways, food and money, they seem to have something we miss and that´s love. They value family and the relationships with one another. I watched this documentary a while ago where the host of the show traveled all around the world to extreme locations. To the absolute worst conditions in Cambodia, visited a gang in São Paulo, Brazil, some nomads in farthest corners of Siberia and many more locations. These people didn´t have much but what united them was the tremendous amount of generosity they had, they shared of the very little they had with this total stranger, took him into their modest homes, fed him with what they had, while the ugly truth were that they could barely feed their own families. 5-7 year olds worked 12 hour days or even longer, don´t remember exactly but in horrible conditions just to get a few pennies worth of salary. These human beings regardless of their location, took this stranger into their homes with open arms.

This made me feel ashamed of myself and our ways and how our society has grown into such a self-centered place, how I am so self-centered. One thing that has driven our modern society into what we see today is a famous quote “Survival of the fittest and strongest”. Everyone has heard this at some point in their lives, right? Humanism and capitalism is what rules our world today. This whole ideology is based on a very ego centric way of thinking. We see it all around us. We can see that there would actually be enough money in this world to give everyone a decent standard but the scale is completely off-balance. There´s people living out on the streets while others drive around in their 50 000 $ cars. Now I want to state this right away, I am not against hard work or against anyone earning money. But I think we can agree on the fact that somewhere along the way something went very wrong, big time. This over exploitation of everything, draining our world empty turns our hearts into stone to a point where we don´t care about our neighbors but rather stare at our own bellybutton. It´s a me – me – me world we live in.

What if I took a look at that tiny cup and realized that i´m ok. My things could actually be much worse. What if we actually changed our ways of thinking and started to appreciate what we have and value the small things in life? Everything is not about richness, success, money, fortune and fame. What if we were to change our mindset and instead of complaining and constantly wanting more and more of things that we actually don´t necessarily need? What if our focus became to love one another and value family relations? What if I sat down and looked on what I actually have and to even take one step further, what if I’d actually be thankful for what I have? Could it be that my life would get some balance and become more relaxed?

Stay tuned for more! Happy Thanksgiving folks!


Disconnected heart

SEA WAVESSo after my very first blog post yesterday i thought that i´d continue. Writing is actually something that i have really never done so bear with me if the writing is a bit incoherent and all over the place. But here we go my very first and real topic.

I thought that I’d try to put some of my thoughts around this matter into words perhaps to get some clarification to myself as well.

Have you ever stumbled on this feeling that it feels like you´re disconnected from yourself and your own emotions? If someone asks you how you´re doing you´re not really able to tell. You often say “I´m good” but the fact is that you´re just on autopilot. You are functioning, you´re fully able to complete your tasks at work and you´re awake but still it feels like you´re just moving along with everyone else. Well I’ve felt like this a lot. The more I get swamped with work the more disconnected I become. By disconnected I mean not being able to sense how you´re really doing, what do you feel in your heart? The fact that I can wake up in the morning and make conversation or laugh at work doesn´t really tell anything about how you´re really doing. I have often had to really stop and think for quite a while on how am I REALLY doing? This is a huge subject which would almost be impossible for me to cover and I don´t even have the knowledge enough to do so but what is it that causes us to act like this? As if there´s a switch that gets turned on and off. I would say that my wife is a master on telling the difference whether I am present or not. So far she´s been 100% correct when pointing this out to me. 🙂

One thing that I do know is that whether you´re present or not makes a huge difference on your marriage, friendships and everyday life. Things that I hadn´t thought about before my wife pointed them out was that I could easily come home after a long and busy work day and barely make any contact with my wife, not intentionally, I guess I just felt so tired all the time that I just felt like diving into the couch and just shut down my brains completely. But the fact is that this had a huge impact on how our relationship evolved. When I more frequently started to ask myself, “that hey how are you doing? Paying attention to what was really going on inside of me. This have made a huge impact on my life and a noticeable change in me as a person that I’m actually aware of how I’m doing. But by trying to get in touch with my heart feels like an essential thing today. I don´t claim that I got this but I am aware of the fact that this makes a huge difference in our lives.

So being present what does that mean? I guess a good way is to say it like this. Your mind is yours – Your emotions are yours – Your Will is yours – but Your heart is You! So basically what determines who I am as a person is my heart. How does one live out of your heart then? Well that´s a new journey for me and probably a journey that will last until I die. What i´ve realized is that what I do for a living or whatever my education is, that has actually nothing to do with my true identity. I do my work but that is not where my dreams lie. I might be a musician or a carpenter or whatever but that is not who I am that is something I do. But what I carry in my heart that is me, that is what determines me as a person.  Unfortunately it seems like our world works the opposite way. Your education or occupation determines who and what you are, that becomes your identity and you live your life through that. Now I don´t mean that you can´t carry pride in what you do, many of us have worked really hard to get where we are and that´s admirable. But there´s so much more in this life than career and money. Already written this long so i don´t want to bore you to death. Part two will follow at some point with some elaboration on the subject. Don´t know if any of it made any sense but this is something that has changed me, far from there yet but this is way better than I used to be.

Take care people

Mystery of life unraveled

Guidance on the wayWhat guides your life? What are the guidelines in today’s society? What makes me a good human being? What makes me content in life? Does it make me a good human being if I give money every now and then to a charity organization?

What is the true character of a good person? Does one do good out of guilt or out of the simple fact that it makes you feel good when you can help another person in need? What is true masculinity contra femininity? Do you live out of your own will power, do you sense that you´re in control?

Are you present in the now, or do you dwell in the past or constantly watching ahead of you into the future? What does it mean to live out of your heart instead of your head and reason? Do you get jealous of your neighbors success?

These are a few topics that will be brought up on this blog site. These are not meant to be presented as 100% scientific facts merely as a different opinion and point of view contra what the norms tend to be in today’s society.

Stay tuned for more

Change From Within

Musings by Jamie Utt

Live to Write - Write to Live

We live to write and write to live ... professional writers talk about the craft and business of writing

Wander Woman Thea

Taste, Travel, Tell

Recovering Agnostic

Heckling from the back pew

Megan Kuykendall's Blog

The ramblings of an aspiring author.

Mabry Campbell Photo Blog

Photo-of-the-day ⎟Study Images + Portfolio Images