My Week Living Alone

My Mom and her boyfriend have been away on a cruise since Sunday and these are some things I have enjoyed about living alone:

  • I can sing as loud as I want
  • I can go to bed early and the house is quiet
  • The TV has been off all week
  • I can play music as loud as I want
  • The fridge is filled with vegetables
  • I can be naked whenever I want
  • It is quiet
  • I can leave my guitar in the living room
Sometimes it is nice to be alone : )

Carpe Diem Muffins

I had a dream. It was a scary dream.

I was in a plane crash with my Mom. We were flying to India for some odd reason and the plane crashed in the water right near Royal Columbian Hospital. It was a bit of a near death experience. It was very scary because for the past year or so I have lived without fear of death. I came to accept my own impermanence without fear. But when the plane crashed my first thoughts were the things I left unsaid. The conversations I put off…

When I woke up (several hours early) I made “carpe diem muffins” (vegan cherry streusel flavor nix the nuts). I called my Dad. I talked to my Mom. I brought treats to my co-workers and had conversations. I talked to some of my friends.

All of these things I wanted to say to people.. You inspire me! I’m so glad to know you! I’m sorry! I take responsibility! You are amazing!

It was interesting to have this reminder to “clear it up as it comes up” (in the words of love-inspiring tricia) and get everything out. I thought it was a little funny though. From some reading recently I was being informed about how actions can either come from a place of love or fear. I thought it was interesting that my actions of love, were coming out of a place of fear (waking up so scared from my dream). But hey, practice makes perfect right!

After discussing dreams with a few people I had another dream the following evening. I was spinning and I could physically feel the earth moving. I kept trying to go to sleep, but I would just continue to spin on each attempt. Kind of interesting because I recently learned that when in a lucid dream, apparently spinning usually prolongs the dream.

CARPE DIEM EVERYBODY!

US & THEM: the inquiry

 

You’re invited to…

US & THEM: the inquiry.

A THEATRE FOR LIVING WORKSHOP (hosted by Jenni Rempel)

Monday, March 21st at 5:30PM

SFU Burnaby, Room BLU 10021.


WHY DO PEOPLE…

+ Hoard food or money?

+ Over consume with no regard for others or the planet?

+ Racially profile?

+ Witness hardship and even atrocity and not reach out?

+ Plan and carry out the annihilation of cultural or ethnic groups?

+ Pollute someone else’s “back yard”?

+ Drop (so many different kinds of) bombs on people?

+ Turn a blind eye, a deaf ear?


What makes all these, and so many other ways that we compromise the planet’s and humanity’s well-being, possible? The creation, over and over, of “the other”: the creation of the “them” in “us and them”.
If global warming teaches us anything, it must be that on this tiny, fragile blue speck hanging in the middle of a vast nothingness, there is nowhere to go. Inside this reality in which humanity lives, who are “they”? A new revolution is required on the planet. Somehow, we must find a way to let go of our mechanistic need for certainty – our need to know that “we” are right and entitled and therefore “they” must be wrong and not entitled.  We must find a way to relax into the certainty of UNcertainty – to know that in whatever geography, whatever politic, whatever context, there is no certain “them”; there is only an ever-evolving us.


WHAT IS “THEATRE FOR LIVING”?

Theatre for Living has evolved from Augusto Boal’s “Theatre of the Oppressed”. Humans think in metaphor. Theatre is a metaphoric language. Combining this with the immediacy of flesh and blood authentic stories makes theatre a very powerful medium for self-reflection and transformation. Us and Them hopes to live in a territory of what John Paul Lederach calls constructive social change. He defines this in his book The Moral Imagination as:

“…the pursuit of moving relationships from those defined by fear, mutual recrimination, and violence toward those characterized by love, mutual respect, and proactive engagement. Constructive social change seeks to change the flow of human interaction in social conflict from cycles of destructive relational violence toward cycles of relational dignity and respectful engagement.”

In this workshop we will use a technique called The Rainbow of Fear and Desire to explore many impluses present in a single conflict. Workshop participants may be directly involved in the action by performing or may choose to observe and be indirectly involved.

ABOUT THE HOST…

Jenni Rempel is certified by Headlines Theatre, after having completed the Rainbow of Desire Group Workshop Facilitator Training. She comes with a background in leadership, training and over 10 years of theatrical performance and directing experience. She is an SFU Student studying Interactive Art + Technology and Communications.

 

How to live better

http://sunshineson.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/happiness_poster11x17.pdf

So I just came across this post on The Sun Shines On Blog from Yes! Magazine (which I must find out more about!). The past 12 months have been the happiest of my entire life and I really believe that it is a result of learning how to live better.

I took an acting course last semester at University and I found that many of the things we worked on could apply to life. Things like choosing a focus. One small goal to keep in mind so that what you do has purpose. I find that the days I actively engage in these practices are more fulfilling. I’ve had tons of little goals. Thing like sounding like I mean it more when I say “Thank you” and saying hello to people I pass… each day is a work in progress of a beautiful masterpiece.

The future

“…I’m not talking about a commune, or even an active rejection of modern life. I’m just talking about a way of life that puts having some fun at the center, a way for people who want to garden, to make music, to play games, or to just have a good conversation, and live cheaply enough that we’re not working all our waking hours to pay the bills on a lifestyle that keeps us in our seats, dreaming of a better life. As I contemplate a return to the US, I realize that I don’t want to return to a life of scheduled exercise, paid for entertainment, and constant worry about the rising monthly costs on a life that I’m barely living. I want to live with friends, have fun, and enjoy this midlife crisis I seem to be having.

In short, I want to make a retirement community for people who want to retire from the rat race, but not from their life’s work. I want to find a way for people to make what they really care about the focus of their life. How would we make a living? I’m not sure. I do know I don’t need that much to thrive and I like to move around during the day. What do you think? Am I just dreaming, or can this be done?”

VIA

I think this is what I want for my life. One day, to live in a community, with a garden at the centre. A place where a guitar is never far away. Fireflies and ladybugs call it home as well. People play with theirs kids, use hula hoops, paint pictures and eat together. Someone is always around for company and the garden is the hub of it all. Bicycles are welcome and smiles come free. We sing, we dance, we make things.

The Epiphany of Epiphanies

Currently I am reading John Green and David Levithan’s collab book “Will Grayson, Will Grayson”. It is fantastic and hilarious. Go read it. At one point that characters are discussing epiphanies. This got me thinking…

My own personal epiphany came in the form of the movie ” Titanic”. Ask me about the story sometime, it’s quite entertaining (in my humble opinion hehe). Anyways, I have also been thinking a lot about being the person I want to be. There’s a really good quote that I can’t quite remember… basically you shouldn’t be worried about what people say about you or how they think of you. You should think of the person you want to be and do your best to embody that. I think I want to be the type of person that shows people their epiphany. I could be an epiphany fairy or something… going around with my magic wand… or foghorn… yes definitely foghorn, blaring epiphanies into people’s ears. Then they’ll all realize how important it is to make a difference, to live consciously, to try.

Your individual beliefs will never change the truth, but truth has the power to change your individual beliefs, if you let it.

– Bryce Bushman

I know that we all make a difference everyday but sometimes I have to remind myself that people all have their own limitations. It’s hard when I see someone eating their disposable lunch made with the products of animal torture wearing their sweatshop clothing. Part of me wants their sandwich to get run-over by their gas guzzling SUV but then that wouldn’t have any lasting impact. It wouldn’t make them have their epiphany. Some of the most loving and amazing people I know contribute to world problems. I contribute to world problems. I think the point is that we all have to do enough good to out weigh the bad. And maybe if we put enough love and kindness back into the world people will start having epiphanies. At least, I hope so… (and not the Sweeney Todd kind either).

Being a Weirdo in the Modern World

I sometimes feel that it is rude to force my beliefs on others. Just becasue I belive in certain things and chose to live a certain way doesn’t mean everyone should, right? I wouldn’t like it if a bunch of religious fundamentalists forced their belifes on me… but then I can’t see anything outside of my way of thought. To me there is no reason to not be vegan. There is no reason to buy bottled water. There is no alternative way to live. To someone else though, I am the religious fundamentalist. I am the crazy person. And what separates us really? Deep down we are all human. But just as I can’t see how joining the army is the right thing to do, many people can’t see how living an environmentally friendly life is right.

I’m trying to find a balance. My beliefs dictate that I should be sharing and spreading my knowledge, I suppose that’s what this blog is meant to achieve. After all, if nothing had spoken to me about these alternative lifestyle choices I wouldn’t know they exist. The point of individual change is to inspire and promote societal change. But then, what the best way to do that? Lecturing people about eating meat when out for dinner with friends just becomes a damper on a fun social outing. It’s hard to find the right way to communicate. Seeing someone accept a plastic bag at the store makes me want to scream out at them but of course that wouldn’t be polite or socially acceptable…

Why is this so hard? Because if it was easy it wouldn’t be worthwhile I suppose.

I’m making some more changes this week. With the summer semester starting i’m going to stop using public transit (so travel by bicycle and foot) and buy only local foods. Possibly other things too. It’s late and I need to contemplate what I want to implement in my life. I need to decide what I want to achieve.