Love Notes & Mementos

Reminisce in Beauty, Love & Human Desire

A Manifesto for Atheists - Ten Virtues for the Modern Age:

1. Resilience. Keeping going even when things are looking dark; accepting that reversals are normal; remembering that human nature is, in the end, tough. Not frightening others with your fears.

2. Empathy. The capacity to connect imaginatively with the sufferings and unique experiences of another person. The courage to become someone else and look back at yourself with honesty.

3. Patience. We lose our temper because we believe that things should be perfect. We’ve grown so good in some areas (putting men on the moon etc.), we’re ever less able to deal with things that still insist on going wrong; like traffic, government, other people… We should grow calmer and more forgiving by getting more realistic about how things actually tend to go.

4. Sacrifice. We’re hardwired to seek our own advantage but also have a miraculous ability, very occasionally, to forego our own satisfactions in the name of someone or something else. We won’t ever manage to raise a family, love someone else or save the planet if we don’t keep up with the art of sacrifice.

5. Politeness. Politeness has a bad name. We often assume it’s about being ‘fake’ (which is meant to be bad) as opposed to ‘really ourselves’ (which is meant to be good). However, given what we’re really like deep down, we should spare others too much exposure to our deeper selves. We need to learn manners, which aren’t evil - they are the necessary internal rules of civilisation. Politeness is very linked to tolerance, the capacity to live alongside people whom one will never agree with, but at the same time, can’t avoid.

6. Humour. Seeing the funny sides of situations and of oneself doesn’t sound very serious, but it is integral to wisdom, because it’s a sign that one is able to put a benevolent finger on the gap between what we want to happen and what life can actually provide; what we dream of being and what we actually are, what we hope other people will be like and what they are actually like. Like anger, humour springs from disappointment, but it’s disappointment optimally channelled. It’s one of the best things we can do with our sadness.

7. Self-awareness. To know oneself is to try not to blame others for one’s troubles and moods; to have a sense of what’s going on inside oneself, and what actually belongs to the world.

8. Forgiveness. Forgiveness means a long memory of all the times when we wouldn’t have got through life without someone cutting us some slack. It’s recognising that living with others isn’t possible without excusing errors.

9. Hope. The way the world is now is only a pale shadow of what it could one day be. We’re still only at the beginning of history. As you get older, despair becomes far easier, almost reflex (whereas in adolescence, it was still cool and adventurous). Pessimism isn’t necessarily deep, nor optimism shallow.

10. Confidence. The greatest projects and schemes die for no grander reasons than that we don’t dare. Confidence isn’t arrogance, it’s based on a constant awareness of how short life is and how little we ultimately lose from risking everything.

—In response to the discussion surrounding his somewhat controversial Religion for Atheists, Alain de Botton releases Ten Virtues for the Modern Age. (via explore-blog)

(Source: , via explore-blog)

Thirst

Calling into the sunshine I cry for a drop of rain. This dry, desolate desert plain has left me alone. My thirst, my desperation or my loneliness—what will get to me first? A hunger consumes me; my grotesque, guttural scream emerges from the pits of my stomach, my lowly efforts unnoticed. It’s taking over, this desire is taking over. I can’t fathom how this could ever become me. The sting in my eyes, aided by the coarse sand as it blows through me, my fingers, from within my grasp. Writhing in agony—weathered worries fading to dust, simple desires taking over every part of me.

Clarity

Can’t focus. Everything is a blur. Sparks of colour dance around me. Sky and clouds intermingle into beautiful streaks of white and blue.

Dizzy. Spinning in circles; never-ending circles. Thoughts twisting and twirling as the world surrounds me in entropy.

You put your arms around me.

Everything becomes still.

First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win

Gandhi wasn’t perfect, but he was a symbol of freedom and revolution.

When we think about racism, majority of us can instantly acknowledge it is wrong. Yet, before the civil-rights movement, racism ran rampant. Remember slavery? We know it is wrong, but back then the status quo believed it was right. People were subject to cruelty and treated like property because of the color of their skin. It sounds absolutely ludicrous now doesn’t it?

Yes, we have moved on as a society and learned from our past mistakes (hopefully). But… when will we learn that we are not perfect—that we, as human beings, are inherently flawed.

We weren’t perfect then, and we aren’t now. 

How can we continue to instill those same principles and prejudices today? Why are there still penalties for Gay marriage? Why are there still states in the USA that do not allow two people who love each other to get married? If in the late 1960s US law was able to recognize that race was not a hindrance on marriage, why haven’t all the state laws, even laws around the world, accepted the same for same sex marriage? Why can’t we realize that we are all just people? You cannot put a price on a human being, no one is better than the next. We are one species, why are we treating each other this way?

We commit crimes in the name of our “God.” Is this “God”—is religion—just an excuse to treat other people like dirt? Have we, as society, lost our ability to think for ourselves? Have we ever had this ability to begin with?

How can we just look the other way when history says otherwise? The evidence is right there.

We blindly follow the status quo and assume it’s right because “everyone else is doing it.”

Sometimes it feels like we’ve reached an impasse. A state of stagnancy. 

But there is hope yet. Those who rise above and stand against it. They get ridiculed and abused for being “rebels”.

Those rebels become heroes and that rebellion becomes freedom in the future.

I think we all need to remember that just because everyone else is doing it, it does not mean it is the right thing to do. 

If we do not fight for the truth, then who will? It takes a lot of courage to go up against the status quo, but once you are there you become a catalyst for change. And isn’t change worth more than acceptance?

It might be hard to see it when you are surrounded by ignorance, but once your eyes are open, it cannot be unseen.

Cover Up

Sheets soaked with tears; little to be said for pain

Slowly spreading like toxin in our veins

Liven it up

Spray some perfume over the insidious scent of the rotten corpses

They reek of ignorance and self inflicted torture.

Yum.

Yum.

You are Real

Alone in a crowd, crooked feet, fabricated smile. They all throw dirt at you. They all abandon you. Isolate you.

You’re different than the rest—you’re beautiful.

In your endless search for the truth, you walk along this desolate wasteland, captured in a sea of grey. The rare burst of color livens up your monochromatic world.

You compare your infallible memories to the present moment—revel in your unfading darkness.

I admire your unfettering love for the genuine, the honest, the true. You refuse to look at the world through colored lenses. Intricate illusions have a way of deluding the mind. Where do you draw the line between what’s real and what’s fabricated?

You are real.

I’ll be with you every step of the way. I won’t abandon you or judge you. I’m here, love.

Your world is not a delusion. It is real.

And I want to be a part of it.

We pour our hearts into these love addictions, our afflictions, our fear of pain and losing the game. We give in to the pleasure, the highs, because it’s too hard to face the pain. The lies we tell ourselves to push ourselves forward, committing self-deceit in the name of love. A love that whines and cries at any trace of adversity. No one knows who they are. They know who they were, and who they want to be. Since the present is fluid, moving and ever-changing we cannot know what will happen, we can only guess. We become skilled at guessing, masters of predictability. However, we cannot forget the element of surprise. We possess the ability to surprise others, to surprise ourselves. Our guesses are not always correct, but we take the chance. If we never take the chance we won’t get anywhere.

Slaves

We are slaves to the working world. We wake up in the morning, go to another boring day at our office jobs, go home, fuck our spouse without looking them in the eyes, then go to bed unsatisfied and miserable. The next day we wake up and repeat this process. Once a week we treat ourselves to a hyper-consumerist filled day and buy things until we get an artificial high unattainable by the boring sex we have at home. We watch the hip teenagers and 20 somethings as they parade around with their perfect faces and sculpted bodies. Their sculpted bodies… We live in dreams of the past—when we had the future ahead of us—when everything looked so promising. Back when all there was to do was party and get laid. Now it’s all gone. We sit on our perfect, modern leather couches, in our perfect, professionally designed houses and just wait for something interesting to happen. But it never does. We finish the wine in our cellar and go to bed a drunken sob. We repeat this cycle until one day we snap.

How long until you snap?


We are the Living Dead

I’m wandering through life like everyone else, and it’s easy to get lost on the way. But what if we are meant to get lost? What if we weren’t meant to follow the path that was laid out for us, as comfortable as it is. What if we were meant to go through the long winding forests, cross the vast oceans, and face the beasts ourselves. Living in fear won’t ever give us what we want. We all just want to “succeed”—that term is so relative. Happiness is relative. Why are we all striving for happiness when it is impossible to always be happy? As humans we feel. This means we feel happiness, sadness, anger, love, hate and a variety of other things we don’t always have names for. If we let go of our ability to feel, we become numb. I want to make my own path and feel everything there is to feel as a human. This is the only way. Why do we call it life if we aren’t prepared to live? I refuse to be the walking dead. I want to live.

Booty Call

We’ve cuddled, fallen asleep in each others’ arms, declared our love for each other time and time again. We complete each other, make each other happy, yadda yadda, but I’ll be straight with you. Stop wasting time. I don’t want to be wined and dined.

I want you bad and I want you now. 

So what are you waiting for?