Archive for ‘Flashes’

April 3, 2011

Like your iPhone? It won’t make you happier.

by caroanna

I’m hooked on nature.

Not in the sense that I’m addicted to it in a negative way, but I love having living plants around me and walking around trees and grass. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t live in a tent or a little cottage in the woods (I was born and grew up in cities), but there’s a deep desire in me to be out exploring what nature has to offer and breathing some fresh air.

And I think everyone has that desire to some extent because we were born into and evolved in nature for so many years, before we distanced ourselves from it so quickly. But some people decide to ignore that desire.

 

Living in an artificial world

The more advanced technology we got, the more we got sucked into a world we’re not made for. If you look back on how humans have lived in the past thousand years, you’d never thought we would sit in our safe houses, look at a screen, or several, for hours and wash the outside dirt from our clothes as soon as it’s there.

Sure, we’ve evolved before and we’ll perhaps be able to adjust to our new, self-made circumstances. But that is not done in a few years. Until then, we’ll get less and less human and more and more stupid or alienated. Too harsh? Maybe. I’m not advocating a radical turn away from civilization. I’m in favor of technical progress. But what I favor even more is life itself and what we make of it.

What makes us happier?

No technology or clean environment will make us happier and feel more human than seeing the wide ocean in front of us or looking at the skyline of a mountain range.

If you don’t have those in your neighborhood (neither do I), try going to the next meadow or park and observe how the tree moves in the wind. Watch the grass moving when you touch it with your hand. If there’s a pond, look at the little waves the water makes when you throw a stone into it. It’s worth taking that time out of your busy, busy day.

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March 20, 2010

Keeping or not keeping?

by caroanna

Dear diary,

I confided in you my deepest secrets when I was younger, only to realize that it’s a bad idea to give others the chance to know them. Yet, in my teenager folly, I still wrote some passages that I should have kept to myself.

Now, I’m older and wiser (I said wiser, not wise) to not confide in you, especially not in electronic form.

Yet, some writers found a new trend in publishing their diaries, or at least keeping one. Should I trust their wisdom and write down what is better forgotten?

Maybe. But I won’t. My secrets can be veiled in metaphors to make them accessible to me, and only me. Works better than a password.

And when I’m old and interested in how I thought and what I did when I was young, I read my stories and wonder how on earth I could have come up with them.

Goodbye diary,

your faithless writer

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May 1, 2009

Freedom and truth…probably the most discussed topics there are.

by caroanna

   Why is some behavior wrong? – Because people will be hurt.

   Who says that? Do you have proof, have you asked these people? Many people talk about freedom as the ultimate goal in life. But what kind of freedom?

   There is no absolute freedom. Everyone acts under certain restrains and preconditions. The difference is that some people notice them and others don’t.  The latter feel free in their choice, and that’s what finally matters: their subjective view. And what one sees as freedom, the other will perceive as restriction. That’s because people are not equal. They don’t think equal and they don’t feel equal.

   So what is the solution to this problem? Take the risk. You never know how many people you will hurt with your behavior but you can be certain that there will be damages. So stop pretending to act perfectly moral by dressing yourself in values that someone has created and others have claimed as true; follow your own goals first.

   Many claim to know the truth about right and wrong, good and bad. That is the purpose of religion. But the fact is that we haven’t found the truth about life yet and it’s questionable if the truth will ever be found. I don’t think this is necessarily negative; at least it keeps people occupied until they die.

May 1, 2009

Living for living’s sake

by caroanna

   “For what’s the sense of struggling to be virtuous,  denying yourself the pleasant things of life, and deliberately making yourself uncomfortable, of there’s nothing to hope to gain by it? And what can you hope to gain by it, if you receive no compensation after death for a thoroughly unpleasant, that is, a thoroughly miserable life?” (Thomas Morus, Utopia, Penguin Classics, p.72)

   First of all, why do you have to make your life miserable? Why not trying to make the best of it and make your life as pleasant and liveable as possible? If you can’t do that without harming other people, then you shouldn’t follow that advice. That should be known to every man.

   But why do you need someone to tell you how to behave in your life? Isn’t it enough to know that you’ll feel good? I think people are generally able to figure out what’s best for them and the people around them. We are clever enough to protect ourselves against evil without having to ask for help to a God who hasn’t been that helpful in the past few hundred years; provided that he exists.

   I don’t need someone telling me that I have to help people when I can and treat them as I would treat myself. I feel good knowing that a person like me (ok, not exactly like me, I don’t consider myself a genius or something like that) came up, as I believe, with this principle, wrapped it in a nice story to make it easier for common people to digest, and wrote it down in a collection of similar stories now widely called The Bible.

   I feel perfectly confident in making my life worth living for my own sake, and being nice to people because I’m not a hipocrite, and want to be treated equally by them. I like seeing people being happy and that’s sufficient for me to make them happy when I can. That’s my reward, and it’s a reward I receive immediately, not after death.

April 26, 2009

Meta-Blogging

by caroanna

   After being convinced that I won’t add another blog to the thousands or so that already exist and are mostly useless, I decided to start one anyway.

   Not because I think my opinions should be read or because they are right or because I’m a person of considerable importance that people are interested in. I was sceptical of blogging and twittering at the beginning. I thought there’s enough crappy writing around us; we don’t need more trivialities from people who are not the least exciting.

   Well, I guess that’s still true. It is hard to find interesting texts with a certain amount of style, but that’s not the point. Blogs that are not read still have their legitimacy. They are like diaries, only (at least mostly) not about love stories. They are minutes of people’s thoughts and emotions. Beneath every incorrect or boring sentence lies the truth of our society and our people.

   How can we know the story of a societal unit if not through their accounts, their memorabilia, collections and interests? That’s what we do when we want to find out more about the ancient Greeks. Only that for our society today, we have better ways of preservation.

   What about the trustworthiness of the bloggers’ accounts?

   Why should a text in a blog be less true than an entry in a writer’s scrapbook? It’s the same medium, just another channel. We will never know how true a document is. We have to rely on our instincts and try to read between the lines.

   If all this is not convincing try to see blogs as a pastime for people who like writing. They don’t force you to read it, you have to click on them. If you don’t do it, whatever, someone else will.