The Friendship Paradigm

“I’m tryna learn something new, surround myself with people that inspire me. Or at least inquire similar desires to do what it T-A-K-E-S to reach the T-O-P.”

~ Kendrick Lamar

Friendship is something that has been and always will be very important in my life. For myself, friends are a sort of de-stressing mechanism: a way to relax, unwind, share a laugh, or just ramble about the latest City victory (c’mon CITY). Because of this, I find that I must choose my friends quite carefully. It is important to me to surround myself with people who not only consider me friends, but understand the uniqueness of my own (and everyone’s for that matter) being.

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“At dawn, when you have trouble getting out of bed, tell yourself: ‘I have to go to work — as a human being. What do I have to complain of, if I’m going to do what I was born for — the things I was brought into the world to do? Or is this what I was created for? To huddle under the blankets and stay warm?

— But it’s nicer here….

So you were born to feel ‘nice’? Instead of doing things and experiencing them? Don’t you see the plants, the birds, the ants and spiders and bees going about their individual tasks, putting the world in order, as best they can? And you’re not willing to do your job as a human being? Why aren’t you running to do what your nature demands?

— But we have to sleep sometime….

Agreed. But nature set a limit on that — as it did on eating and drinking. And you’re over the limit. You’ve had more than enough of that. But not of working. There you’re still below your quota.

You don’t love yourself enough. Or you’d love your nature too, and what it demands of you. People who love what they do wear themselves down doing it, they even forget to wash or eat. Do you have less respect for your own nature than the engraver does for engraving, the dancer for the dance, the miser for money or the social climber for status? When they’re really possessed by what they do, they’d rather stop eating and sleeping than give up practicing their arts.

Is helping others less valuable to you? Not worth your effort?”

~ Marcus Aurelius, Meditations 5:1

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Law 25: Re-create Yourself

“I had rather be first in a village than second in Rome.”

~ Julius Caesar

The properties you are born with are not necessarily who you are, outside of the characteristics inherited through your parents, friends, and experiences in life that have shaped your personality. One should see themselves as an artist, a clay that can be continually molded to their liking.

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The Gift of Giving

“Those who are happiest are those who do the most for others.”

~ Booker T. Washington

To be quite honest, sharing was never an easy endeavour for me. Since I was a young lad, I hated it when people borrowed my things and broke them or failed to return them. I like to think I take good care of my belongings, and it annoys me when people fail to do the same. This is something I have definitely worked on in the last few years, and today, as I was shopping downtown, I realized I have made the 180 degree turn I so desired.

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Bophelo: 150mg PO pd

“Never cut a tree down in the wintertime. Never make a negative decision in the low time. Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods. Wait. Be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come.”

~ Robert H. Schuller

It can be difficult to turn over the pages of life, especially those that are happy and contented. Unfortunately, time waits for no man, and if you let it, the world can and will move on without you. Despite the writer’s block that comes with authoring a new chapter of life, each one plants a hope for the next. Whether things are (or aren’t) going well for you does not guarantee tomorrow will be the same; in fact it guarantees the exact opposite.

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Luck of the Draw

“Coincidence is logical.”

~ Johan Cruyff

Today is August 8th – not particularly special for any specific reason, but every day has potential to be special in the eyes of someone. August 8th (or July 26th on the Julian Calendar; if anyone is struggling to think of a gift to get me for my birthday, get me a 2017/18 Julian Calendar) is the 220th day of the year, and is more likely to fall on a Monday, Wednesday or Saturday than any other day of the week (coincidentally, today is a Tuesday). It is the birthday of Louis Van Gaal and Roger Federer, and the commencement day of the “Hundred Days Offensive”, a series of Allied offensives on the Western Front leading to the end of WW1.

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The Prince

“He who believes that new benefits will cause great personages to forget old injuries is deceived.”

~ Niccolò Machiavelli

Considered one of the 6 cardinal virtues of Hinduism, forgiveness is the intentional and voluntary process by which a victim undergoes a change in feelings and attitude regarding an offence, with an increased ability to wish the offender well. Well at least that’s the textbook definition anyways. However, incorporated into the DNA of man is the desire to stay ahead of the competition, to maximize chances of survival. I bought a book yesterday, The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli, which turned on a metaphorical light bulb in my head. The book explains the art of statecraft, of holding and governing principalities, and the virtues and behaviours that a ‘new prince’ (or any leader for that matter) should exhibit to maintain rule over his dominion.

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Newton’s 3rd Law

“The best revenge is to be unlike him who performed the injury.”

~ Marcus Aurelius 

I have always thought vengeance to be the most perfect validation of tabula rasa. When we are born into this world, we know nothing of dissent; yet as we grow, our ideals and values are a reflection of our experiences and the experiences of others. What we see and experience in our journey through life shapes how we perceive people, and how we act when placed in familiar situations.

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“You must trust and believe in people, or life becomes impossible.”

~ Anton Chekhov

Street signs. Guide dogs. A white cane. Guidance is everywhere; it is a vital organ in the system that propels us forward and keep the wheels of life turning in our favour. Without guidance, one is left to traverse his path without a map, leaving every decision to blind fate.

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