Rings of Smoke


I have caught myself many times making stories in my head of the origin of those I see.  Chasing characters that passed my car window, that man smoking his cigarette on the bike lost in thought, that child aimlessly walking about with torn clothes and no shoes to protect from the heat that radiates from the road. They all seem like characters with back stories, one with his childhood in the making spent on roads making circles in the wind, one ready to go home to a family he cannot please while slowly smoking his life away. Don’t get me wrong, my characters do not divulge from streets or empty roads, but they formulate from every conversation I have, every individual with a heart, and a story worth telling.

Humans were born for greatness, a kind of superiority we claim at birth, because we were entrusted with the biggest gift, the authority to think for ourselves, to be able to differentiate between choices and pick the right one, always the right one. This act of thinking also forces upon us the sad truth that the biggest flaw in the machinery of a human, is his thought process. It ranges from civility, from human instinct to the instinct of an animal, to be brutal, to not only those present in the arena, but to be able to self destruct completely. We were born that way, to be able to conclude our entire world in one swift motion and then weep at our broken pieces in remorse.

They say wars kill men. I believe hope kills us all. We’re in a darkness and caught in despair when a net of hope catches us, engulfs us. When that hope dies, from deep inside that little hole, we catch a glimpse of a shadow of death, the death of emotion standing in the corner biting its nails, waiting, patiently for its slow end. How ungrateful of man to mistake the light in his heart to be failing, to believe that an obscurity has overtaken  his being and there is no one here to save him.

From my humble observation of individuals, I believe we are all somewhere in between, the journey of our life to the destination, just like a child making rings in the air, barefoot in the heat, unaware of our torn clothes and unaware of what we may be missing out on. Our aimlessness is what drives us, it is our liberty in that moment to be whoever we ever wanted to be with absolutely no plans whatsoever on how we may get there. That is our hope and denial all wrapped up in a thought bubble preserving our dreams and keeping us safe from becoming the man smoking away his life because he is too afraid to go home. The child’s helplessness does not bother him, his inabilities and flaws are bare and open for the world to see, but the man? He is like you and I on a daily basis. Insecure, composed, complex, unable to be justified by an onlookers eyes. He is a mystery, you may not know his inhibitions even if you spoke to him, because he was taught that the world is cruel and people bargain happiness for ambition.

This is not the world that we chose, these are not the people we wanted to be. All of us, part of a race to maybe be up close with the divinity of winning, becoming robots in the making, treating emotion and love as a forlorn forced upon us, to play with, to ditch when its purpose no longer fulfills us. Chaining ourselves to society’s pressure to trade it for higher buildings and material wealth, never to preserve the idea of good and the natural instinct to empathize, like folklore of a time gone by.  A wish that blows in the wind reminding us of the people we were meant to be, but we chose not to because the world thrives on stability and different is deemed appalling and hope, is nothing but a word, while failure is mighty and always in reach. It is the ease with which we regret our misgivings and blame the problems of the world on the ones we feel were ready to hold it together.

The burden of the world lies on all our shoulders combined, we are witness to the fact that the light overshadows the darkness around us, each and every single day. And yet we go on, wanting to conquer the tangible universe around us without conquering that one particle within reach, our very own soul. Let not the hope, kill you, let it reinvent you. Break the shell and emerge, the world needs more heroes; we fall short because we’re waiting for someone else to take the role. It will not be easy, but it will be your only salvation and you will come out of it alive and free.

“There is a war that makes us adore our conquerors and despise ourselves.”
Arundhati Roy, The God of Small Things

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The Art of Living


Do you know what happens when you light a match and don’t use it? It lights the fire, oh yes, it creates a spark just before the flame, but when you just hold it, not utilizing it, not letting the light engulf something else, the fire? It burns out.
That’s how people are like, that’s how relationships are. You hold on to the fire too long, testing it, teasing it, watching it dance as it creates shadows all around, but eventually, that fire is going to burn out on its own.
I don’t know if I’ve figured out life in all these twenty-two years on earth, there’s a lot yet to figure out, a long way to go, I know.
I’ve seen a lot of pain, a lot of happiness, a lot of deception and a lot of deceit, yet an idealist inside me holds a torch to the idea, that people sometimes find a way to surprise you. In their weakest hours, in their most hurtful of phases, when they hit rock bottom the outer shell cracks, revealing what’s inside. In one’s own vulnerability lies the mere essence of their being. What you say and what you think when you’re that low below, is the only truth in your world, provided you embrace it.
Your life is made up of stepping-stones, there is no final destination, it’s all just from and to, there lies no real plan, if it’s a game, you’ll win either way.
You will win pain, you will win interminable laughter, you will win ecstatic outbursts, you will win love and then, if you’re lucky enough, you will win the loss of that love. All these, just stepping-stones, none of them take you back, they all take you forward. That’s the kind of world we are meant for. Imperfection and flaws, all original in their own aspect, sent down to learn the art of living, of surviving and living yet again.
In a perfect world, we would be sent down to laugh, to stay toddlers, running around in meadows, unaware, innocent. Without knowledge of war, of misery, of freedom and of happiness.
Can you imagine living in a perfect world? Do you want to? Doesn’t it seem absurd that perfection is so imperfect in substance, and scars and wounds hold beauty like nothing else, for they give credit to, for they give justice to and because they make you understand the idea of life being worth it all at the end of it.

Fire

So dream your dreams, hold on to hope and when you tire out, crash. It’s called for. You were not created to be flawless, not created to be unbroken, you were created to fall, crash and burn, to get back up again, to grow even when your roots feel too heavy to let go of. Blossom with the idea, that you were made to live.

When you light a match, it sparkles, just before the flame lights, there is a beautiful color of blue and red, that hues in undertones before the fire stands magnificently, ready to burn. Ready to empower.
All that burns, eventually turns to dust, but remember to be magnificent when you burn so bright, for that is the only way to live.

“I believe the universe wants to be noticed. I think the universe is improbably biased toward the consciousness, that it rewards intelligence in part because the universe enjoys its elegance being observed. And who am I, living in the middle of history, to tell the universe that it-or my observation of it-is temporary?”
The Fault in our Stars
-John Green

Choose happiness today


They say write it all down on paper; pour your thoughts like the remains of a person’s ashes onto the ocean. Let it flow away, so you can start letting them go.
There are dimensions to the words you speak, and the words you write. They are always two different things, contradictions in the back of your mind, but drawing a line there doesn’t help. You need to understand what is inside you, for what resides within, eventually takes over you, clawing its way out to the surface, for caging it up does not fix it. We demand stability so much, we fail to notice that our life has its own purpose to fill, and change is a stability of its own, one we spend so much time chasing away, and we fail to acknowledge it.
God works in mysterious ways; you meet people who pull you in darkness, only to find those who pull you to light, so you understand that both people had a purpose to full-fill for you to learn something. Human beings aren’t angels, but many times you cross paths with people, and you know God is getting through to you, through them. But sometimes, you have to be your own angel because there is a whole new world that exists within, one that requires you to keep up, for it’s got its own time ticking.
Each day when you wake up, it’s to a new life, a life full of possibilities. We think we’re stuck in a limbo, a constant whirlpool of do’s and dont’s, of rights and wrongs, of hopeful and helpless, when the truth is, we choose both those actions. We define those limits, and then we find a place to feel caged in inside of them. Your life is your own, no one controls it best then you do. There is both darkness and light inside of each and every one of us, what matters is not where the world takes you, or where you’re afraid the darkness is going to suck you in. The only thing that matters is that you have a choice, you are not stuck.
Someone once told me, life is a series of unfortunate events, but it’s not the things that happened to you that are most unfortunate, it’s the things you chose not to.
So choose happiness over unhappiness. It’s true; it’s a choice we make in all our sanity, we think all the things that hurt, all the dejected incidents that occurred are the ones that we just happened to walk across to. But when you look inside, you realize, unhappiness does not come from a foreign space, of harm inflicted by another person, unhappiness is a personal choice. So when you wake up each day, when things don’t go according to the plan you made, remember, there is no set path laid out for you, you decide where you want to go, so choose it, don’t settle for it. Choose contentment over discontent, it’s an option we’re all blessed with and no one has the ability to take it from you, but you.

“No matter who we are or where we live, deep inside we all feel incomplete. It’s like we have lost something and need to get it back. Just what that something is, most of us never find out. And of those who do, even fewer manage to go out and look for it.”
-Elif Shafak, Forty Rules of Love

Beginnings, endings and the in between


DSC_0378 With every beginning, comes the slow trace of an ending. There it is, subtly moving in the background, when you find, your new found respect of certainty. A part of you considers, or if you are an optimist, you don’t even do that. The veil to and from either of those things, is thin, is even concealed by a large chunk of buoyancy on your part. What it does, it hides the horror, masks the monsters lurking around the corner of your own conscience. It exists, it’s there, but you don’t want to know it. So you never learn to look.

The problem with human imagination is, it expands to far too many corners of the mind, and takes up unknown space, spreading slowly. First it affects your actions. Second it affects your expectations, and third, and most dangerous, it affects your heart.
Hope is not an unknown thing, it isn’t even dangerous, taken in small doses, when the time fits right, but many times, the fragment of a moment that begins your journey, not restricting time and space, can lead to a large amount of hope, for a cause that is not bound to last a long time.
So we fight for it, we even cage ourselves in an obsession to find a way out, even if the way out is the one which makes your crawl for it, makes you hurt, makes you question your own preferences. And what this whole process does is, it eventually leads you to break that wall, the one you built to keep the dark forces out, and once you do, the darkness overtakes you; it sucks up your soul, and fills you with bitterness, with anger, and worst of all, with regret. And you’re faced with two options, to keep on fighting, or to flee from the feeling altogether. If you keep fighting you’ll either win with a heart, that won’t stop bleeding, or the best part of your thoughts, will be overtaken by your demons, which will constantly make you think else wise.
And if you flee, you will only be the saviour in your own eyes, and that too, in the shallow end, and for a while, it will feel alright, it will feel like the burden is finally off your shoulders, and that you’ve dropped it into an ocean, which will carry it far away from you, and so it may end up on a river bank someday, for someone else to sort out.
But what a floating burden like that does is, it finds a way through the tides, back to you.
So what do you do? In a time like this, when the better part of your thoughts, and the bliss you once felt, has forsaken you?
You do both those things. You fight till you know that it’s time to go. It’s time to let it free. Not in the way you dump the contents of a can you decide doesn’t fit your taste anymore. But like you slowly unwrap a candy, and throw away the wrapper, that has kept it safe for you. But now, you don’t need it anymore. Its existence has been forgone.

Sometimes, some things we just don’t have any control over. We like to believe that there is something more that we can do. A little more effort, a tad bit more affection and love, but no. When the flowers lose their bloom, when it’s time for the trees to shed, when the leaves turn dark, when the sun disappears behind a dark cloud, it doesn’t mean that they won’t come back again, in their own spirit, in their own time. It just means that they reached an expiration date, an ending.
So find another beginning if you’ve reached an end, search for the lost light, it’s never too far. With every beginning, comes an ending, but with every ending, also begins the search for, a new start. A start that will lead on to another journey, another adventure, and hopefully bring forth the idea of better times, of lessons that are absolutely necessary to redeem your soul, for the soul is a hungry one, and it thrives on happiness. So feed your soul all the happiness that you desire, for it can be found, it exists, buried underneath someone else’s ending. It could be your beginning.


“Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swaps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won. It exists, it is real, it is possible, it’s yours.”

― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged