Resolution of conflicting interests within each of us-the desire to fulfill a personal purpose versus the desire to forget about it and just go have fun, for example-takes time and focus and application of a lot of qualities, like playing a difficult piece of music with two hands on the piano. Many people are looking for a simple pill to make that apparent dichotomy go away. Once they discover it doesn’t exist, it’s very frustrating.

Of course, the self-righteous demand and expectation for love, and exactly how it should be expressed, is not the most streamlined method for producing it in another for you. That is, it does not compel or create the love itself. You’re neither loving nor producing that which would compel the love toward you. You’re compressed between them both and incapable of accepting either. And rightly so. Which then accelerates the accumulating suffering.

In terms of achieving what I call “being in the right place at the right time,

The purest definition of “religious

Breathing is the fundamental act of being alive. One can go without thoughts, emotions or sensations, sleeping, talking or any other activity for a long time, without food for weeks, without water for days. But if you stop breathing, you’ll be dead before you finish reading this letter. Because it is the essence of life, some focus upon it seems appropriate.

Whether or not one believes in the accelerating dangers of the climate crisis, the end of fossil fuels, or the permanent annihilation of species of plants, insects and animals that essentially cover our ass by maintaining an inconceivably complex environment in which we have the freedom and responsibility to do pretty much whatever we’d like, it’s not too difficult to at least perceive the dangers of heightened tensions between cultures that now, for the first time, have the power to annihilate each other or the entire planet.

There’s surprising relief and regeneration in finding ourselves within a moment of genuine grace, however small or temporary it may be.

Life will give you what you need once you will do something with it. It may not give you what you want so as to be as comfortable as you want, as Nature’s concern is need as it relates to evolution. In my humble opinion, Nature is too kind, but, as I say, the game is big, and the challenges and temptations absolute. And this is a fascinating aspect of the totality of beauty; it gives more than is only necessary. The generosity is mind- and heart boggling.

If your curiosity reaches a breaking point (compelled actually means that you only have the remaining choice to act on it, having tried all the other options before), and becomes fascination with mystery or truth, you find what you need. Maybe it’s a person, maybe it’s a tragedy, maybe it’s an explosive recognition that, “My God, I’m still alive.

Traditional stoicism, indifference to pleasure or pain, is a form of imposing conscience so as to block more immediate desires. The problem is that it eventually collapses on itself because natural emotional and physiological impulses are being ignored or repressed. To pass beyond that dichotomy-

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