Rhythm On A Quiet Walk

On this beautiful yet a bit chilly Saturday, I went out for a stroll, along the lakeside in Toronto. No amount of grandiose concrete jungles could replace the serenity that I felt, being at one with nature.

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I had been here many times before. With each and every shot, taken by my camera, of the familiar ambiance, and wildlife residents by the lake, a never felt before new dimension just emerged out of the invisible.

I am yet able to sing out the rhythm that the beauty of nature tingles on my heartstrings; a deep resonance that can only be heard on a quiet walk in solitude.

What Was Once…Is No Longer The Case

What was once foreign will eventually become familiar, what was once taboo will eventually become normal, what was once intimate will eventually become distant, and what was once stagnant will eventually become active. Things are always changing. Every ticking sound of a clock notifies us the vanishing of the past and the arrival of the future.

The past can turn into the future at a second’s notice. Yet, the aspiration of shedding the old beliefs to make room for the progressive ones usually takes more than a second to be actualized. Quite often, months, years, and even decades are what is needed for the entire metamorphic process to be completed, and its impact to be deeply ingrained in the social fabrics and cultural tapestry.

I remember as a young teenager, I was made aware by the adults in my life that living together before marriage was a no-no. Dating entailed only hand-holding on a romantic outing, and perhaps, just perhaps, if situation allowed, some loving cuddling and gentle kissing. Any additional stimulating physical contact was considered to be taboo and inappropriate. Now, let’s fast forward to this moment, where I am writing this post. Having been living as an adult by myself in a different country for more than a decade, what was once considered by some in my proximity as taboo is no longer the case. In this different environment, people in a romantic relationship are almost, and always encouraged to trial run everything that is involved in a marriage life before officiating their lifelong commitment to their spouses on a piece of paper. People are to do, with their partner, more than just the simple canoodling, sex is also expected on the trial run agenda.

There is nothing wrong, according to some experts, necessary to have basic understanding of our partner’s sexual compatibility, in comparison to ours, in advance. That being said, the hard-to-shed stigma attached to sex still silences many of us from treating this subject apologetically. No matter which society we are in, regardless of our cultural background and how much of an advocate we are for a healthy sexual life, our memories of the old-schooled perception of sex still hold us back from fully celebrating it openly.

Most of us have no trouble discussing violence and being exposed to the gun-shot scenes every other ten minute on our screens; yet we feel uncomfortable, or should I say, ashamed for tackling any sex related subject, and swearing every once in a while. Sex is an integral part of us, but violence is not. Without sex, human cannot survive. Without violence, human can live on and potentially enjoy a long life. Maybe, it is time to let go of the past, by readjusting our viewpoints.

Playing The Comparison Game

Recently, I had a conversation with my mom, during which I let her know the education system and societal environment that I grew up in deprived me a sense of free-spiritedness. It was a difficult yet honest confession that was needed at the time to bring new understandings into our distant relationship. Throughout my growing up years, the constant comparison, initiated mostly by important adults in my life, between others and I often made me feel sorry for being who I was. In addition, the lack of pragmatic methods to help me confront with bullying, deal with body image, and handle the lackluster academic performances in school slowly but surely led me to lose a tremendous amount of pride and confidence in myself.

Now I know that I was not fully responsible for feeling unhappy within my own skin. Low self-esteem, a consequence of my constant comparison with others, had made me suffer in silent.

I do not think that comparison-based thinking and behavioral patterns are conducive to leading a life of balance. Although comparison is not an absolute devil, because without it, it is impossible for any of us to figure out where we are in the grand scheme of things in this world, and to have a clear awareness of our areas of improvement; however, I do urge adults, who have young people in their lives, to be extra careful with the choices of their language, and the methods of their referencing examples and models so as to prevent unseen damages that may be potentially caused in the young ones’ psychic.

I take responsibility to rewire my thinking and to recondition my behavioral habits for the better. As needed as it is, playing the comparison game, this delicate approach, needs to be practiced properly and appropriately.

#OscarsSowhite

Some people do not believe in life after death but practice Feng Shui in their lives. In their opinion, Feng Shui is not about future prediction; rather, serves as a general advisory of the potential bad luck; as well as the careless decision-making that may disturb our peace of mind and cost us dearly on the health, familial, and financial fronts. In shorts, the intention behind the attempt to figure out whether or not there is a life after death or the flow pattern of the so called, Qi, in Feng Shui, is all for the purpose of self-preservation and self-protection.

Why do we feel the need to protect and immortalize ourselves? Because, as vast as the universe is, there is only one of us, though we may share certain cultural values and physical attributes with a number of people, who descend from the same racial lineage as we do. Our individuality makes us uniquely different. In a world, where we are taught the importance of embodying our authentic self and the necessity to speak up for those weak and powerless, who do not have a voice, the innate desire to get our singular voice heard and our hard fought battles recognized is as strong as ever.

There are many spaces, resources and opportunities on this planet earth, but they are not available to all. Our background, social class, and racial privileges, in many ways, have pre-determined our life’s quality, circumstance, influence, and the degree of the abundance. Reality is a sphere, in which dichotomy and contradiction run rampant. Positively forward progression is, at times, more easily achieved in a bed time story, written on the inside pages of a children’s book than within a grown-up system, where deeply ingrained prejudices can hinder the pace of advancement of any kind subtly and efficaciously.

Over the weekend, the topic of #OscarsSowhite was once again heating up the late night radio wave of BBC London, and during which, a counter attack in the name of White Racism was mentioned by some for the purpose of justifying the blinding whiteness among the 2016 Oscars nominees. According to those counter attackers, people, who complained about the lack of racial diversity among the Oscar nominees this year, were using the race card as a tool to discriminate against white people. Some even suggested that there were not any outstanding performances by Black actors and actresses that worth an Oscar nomination, despite the fact that many positive reviews were given by film industry critics to the likes of Idris Elba, Will Smith and Michael B. Jordan.

Racism is a heavy word that is filled with historical sentiments and memories. Having studied and observed human histories of the past and the present, I am not sure that white people are in a position to couple the word, white, with the word, racism, together. In addition, thanks to the global popularity of Western pop culture, white is still perceived and portrayed to be, under majority of the circumstances, the dominant race. For someone white to self-proclaim as the victim of race-based discrimination under this #OscarsSowhite climate, in my opinion, is a little rich.

Perhaps, whoever in the white community feels and thinks being racially discriminated against is due to his or her discomfort of noticing the increasing visibility of the so called, the others, in the mainstream medias, whose presence is previously looked at as exotic, incomprehensible, and foreign. And hence resistance is their natural response to change.